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What is in cups of 7 of cups?

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Gofannon  Gofannon is offline
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From: http://www.biddytarot.com/tarot-card...seven-of-cups/

"These cups each have a single item rising from them – a snake, representing wisdom and knowledge; a shrouded figure, representing the need for illumination; a human head, representing a companion for the conjurer; a tower, representing stability and power; treasure, representing abundance and wealth; a laurel wreath, representing victory or honour, and status; and a dragon, representing supernatural forces."

If a shrouded figure represents the need for illumination, it still fits with the concept of hallucinogens. They're a shortcut for those who don't want to do hours of meditation and yoga.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abrac View Post
At the very least he was aware of the magical properties of mushrooms.
We know that both Yeats and Crowley were well aware of these things.
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Teheuti  Teheuti is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gofannon View Post
From: http://www.biddytarot.com/tarot-card...seven-of-cups/

"These cups each have a single item rising from them – a snake, representing wisdom and knowledge; a shrouded figure, representing the need for illumination; a human head, representing a companion for the conjurer; a tower, representing stability and power; treasure, representing abundance and wealth; a laurel wreath, representing victory or honour, and status; and a dragon, representing supernatural forces."
What I find of greatest value are the things the querent sees in each cup and which one they most desire and/or which they fear. It's always very enlightening.
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Abrac  Abrac is offline
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I was looking at the Book-T description of this card and noticed something interesting. Several of the meanings seem to correspond exactly to the Waite-Smith image. I made a diagram that illustrates how they might match up.

7 of Cups

There are so many similarities between these two it's hard not to conclude Waite used the GD as his pattern on this one.

The only one I can't find a good match for is the female face. There seem to be several possibilities but nothing that seems to fit very well. Anyone have any thoughts on it or the others?

From Book-T:
"A hand as usual holds the lotus stems which arise from the central lower cup. The hand is above this cup and below the middle one. With the exception of the central lower cup, each is overhung by a lotus flower, but no water falls from them into cups which are quite empty. Above and below are the symbols of the Decanate, Venus and Scorpio.

Possibly victory, but neutralized by the supineness [lack of motivation] of the person. Illusionary success. Deception in the moment of apparent victory. Lying error, promises unfulfilled. Drunkenness, wrath, vanity, lust, fornication, violence against women. Selfish dissipation. Deception in love and friendship. Often success gained, but not followed up. Modified by dignity.

Netzach of Heh. (Lying. Promises unfulfilled. Illusion. Error. Deception, slight success at outset, but want of energy to retain it.) Therein rules Melchel and Chahaviah."
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from Waite, The Works of Thomas Vaughn: Thomas Vaughn, Lumen et Lumine:

“Strange chimaeras signify the innumerous conceited whimsies and airy, roving imaginations of man. For before we attain to the truth we are subject to a thousand fancies, fictions and apprehensions, which we falsely suppose and many times publicly propose for the truth itself . . . all which are false and fabulous suppositions. . . . Whence proceeded the present heresies and schisms but from the different erroneous apprehensions of men? Indeed whiles we follow our own fancies and build on bottomless, unsettled imaginations we must needs wander and grope in the dark, like those that are blindfolded [see 8 of Swords]. . . . It is true that no man enters the Magical School but he wanders first in this region of chimaeras, for the inquiries which we make before we attain to experimental truths are most of them erroneous.”
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Hey, I totally forgot about this thread!��

It's been a year and I still do not believe this is all dillusional card. Well unless it is badly aspected. I think the cups are what we all desire and they are represented by the seven sins:
1. pride - the cup with lorel
2.*greed - the cup with treasure
3.*lust - the cup wit shrouded figure as we lust over things that we don't understand and think will make us better or more powerful. I wish I was you but take off the veil and do you really want to be that?
4. envy - the cup with beautiful face as we all wish to be young.
5. gluttony - the cup with a snake, eats it's own tail!
6.*wrath - the cup with a dragon cannot supersede the strength of this beast.
7.*sloth - the cup with tower as it leads to power and laziness

But I'm going to point out that nothing is handed, one must work for it so it doesn't turn into a fantasy ��
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I think the figure under the shroud probably is a disembodied spirit. I don't think this because I want it to be but for several good reasons. First, there's Waite's belief that necromancy, or calling up departed spirits, was possible. In his 1891 book, The Occult Sciences, p. 74, he says:
"As a fact, the evocation of the souls of the departed is one of the most important branches of practical mysticism; it is one of the test experiments by which the mystic gospel may be said to stand or fall. If it be possible, after following for a certain prescribed period a certain method of life, calculated to exalt the intellectual faculties, to quicken spiritual perceptions, and to germinate what may be called a new sense in man; if it be possible to enter into actual and undeceived communication with beings who have departed from this our plane of subsistence; if we can see them as they were; if we can, to some extent, know them as they are; and if, at the time, we are in conscious possession of our common senses, then the mystic gospel must be the truth itself."
In other words Spiritualism and necromancy prove the existence of a reality beyond the material, which is important if mysticism is to be believed. He goes on to quote Paul Christian who says a person might be "Prompted by a sentiment of profound tenderness," to call up a departed loved one. This is of interest because Waite lists "sentiment" as one of the divinatory meanings for the 7 of Cups.

In 1891, Waite speaks quite favorably of "lawful" necromancy:
"It must be clear from the above ceremonial that there is nothing repellent to the most cultivated spiritual sense in the rites of lawful necromancy. It is otherwise, however, with the evocations of the infernal art, with the unhallowed necromantic practices of Black Magic, which violate the sanctity of the sepulchre, and endeavour to establish a vicious communion with the souls of evil men." p. 81.
But by 1893, in Azoth, or, The Star in the East, his opinion is beginning to shift. In Appendix 5 he says:
"It is a criticism which may seem to be severe, and we wish that we could regard it as unjust, but there can be little doubt, from our own philosophical standpoint, that a large portion of the active spiritual movement, and a still larger portion of its literature, are only a sublimed materialism. We do not here speak of what is admittedly coarse and crass in its constituent elements; we regard it even in its refined presentation as at heart material, and in nothing so much as in its demonstration of the after-life. Its furthest vistas do not bring us appreciably nearer to that which the Mystics understand by the inner life."
He still sees it as a demonstration of the after-life, but of not much use beyond that. He mentions the "active spiritual movement" but his criticism seems to go to the very heart of spiritualism.

Levi's account of necromancy in Transcendental Magic is also of interest. Waite was aware of it and comments on it in The Occult Sciences, p. 74. Levi's views are interesting on several fronts. One is the Astral Light which is seen in the 7 of Cups:
"We have said that the images of persons and things are preserved in the Astral Light. Therein also can be evoked the forms of those who are in our world no longer, and by this means are accomplished those mysteries of Necromancy which are so contested and at the same time so real."—Levi
Another is Levi's description of his evocation of Apollonius:
"Three times, and with closed eyes, I invoked Apollonius. When I again looked forth there was a man in front of me, wrapped from head to foot in a species of shroud, which seemed more grey than white."
Notice the shroud in the 7 of Cups is also more grey than white.

And finally is Levi's description of the apparition as shrouded. I believe the figure in the 7 of Cups is also shrouded. I can't think of any other good explanation for what else it could be, especially with the profusion of astral light coming from beneath it. The first thing a person usually thinks of when they think of a ghost is a sheet or burial shroud.

In summary, it represents sentimentalism taken to the extreme, or a preoccupation with occult phenomena to the neglect of the inner life.
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I ran across this in Waite's Azoth, or, The Star in the East where he contrasts fantasy with imagination. It seems to clarify a little more where he was coming from.
"Imagination is to fantasy what the aureoline [gold] side of the Magnum Opus was to the argentine [silver] phase. The fancy plays and pleases; the imagination commands, compels. Imagination creates, fancy combines only. We are charmed by a tale of the fairies; we are enthralled by a romance of magic. The Countess D’Aulnoy is delightful, but we are overwhelmed by Tieck. Fancy changes for a moment the withered leaf into the precious metal; imagination institutes a permanent alchemical conversion. So also, what is fantastic in religious departures may shortly divert the soul, but it requires the deep things of consecrated imagining to accomplish a real regeneration. Fancy changes the manner; imagination transfigures the motive. Imagination is then everything; in its own order it is supreme."
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Wow, I've been thinking of this for a while. Thanks for posting so long ago bluelagune. I will read this thread when I have much more time and concentration for the 7 of cups - probably when I get it again.

I agree with most of this and thanks for posting, laurence

Quote:
Originally Posted by laurence View Post
The figure with Its back turned symbolizes human consciousness, which prefers to look inside rather than facing reality.
Seven golden chalices contain seven different images generated by the human psyche.
the castle on the top of the hill represents a dream of greatness and enviable social status.
The jewels represent wealth.
the laurel crown represents success.
the woman's face represents the search for beauty and pleasure.
the veiled figure is the attraction towards the unknown.
The dragon and the snake represent 2 different ways of understanding the monsters of the unconscious, as symbols of either ignorance and fear or wisdom and regeneration.

From Roberto De Angelis.
but I see maybe
the dragon as signifying sex/lust

the snake as a certain level of spiritual wisdom

AND the shrouded cup as containing the only thing that I don't see in the other cups: Love of the pure emotional variety. I think that is why it is shrouded. All of the other things are attainable through worldly application and dedication but Love is the "mysterious thing" that cannot be worked toward in the "conventional" way and must be attained/sustained ultimately by seeking & following the internal.
That's why it comes after the six of cups: he had a taste of pure emotion in childhood but as he grew up he was encouraged to find satisfaction in all of the other worldly pursuits. Now he has them but realizes that there is that other cup, the contents of which he can't quite see anymore, so then he 8-of-cups-it and starts following the desires of his heart (again).

I will definitely be reading this entire thread soon
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Abrac  Abrac is offline
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I ran across a very good clue as to the identity of the being in the center; it's in Waite's Azoth, or, The Star in the East, 1893. Contrasting true and false light he says:
"It [true light] is not the material projection of a phantasmal radiance for the creation of a curious illusion;"
I believe this is a reference to illusionists who made a living tricking people at seances into thinking they had actually seen a departed loved one.
"it is the opening of an intellectual faculty which enables one to perceive what is, even as it really is; it does not read meanings into Nature, but it interprets her sure sense. It is not like the Veiled Son of the Starbeam, which, if you can once lay it loosely about the floor, will permeate space generally. It enables you indeed on the authority of George Macdonald, to 'behold the same thing everywhere,' but that is the one substance infinitely differentiated and permutating throughout the chromatic scale of creation."
Here's where it gets wild. The "Veiled Son of the Starbeam" is a reference to a work by Francis Bret Harte, Condensed Novels, 1867. One of his short stories, The Dweller of the Threshold is based on Bulwer-Lytton's Zanoni, 1842. Bulwer-Lytton refers to astral beings as "Starbeam," but in Harte is found Waite's reference practically verbatim:
"And the veiled Son of the Starbeam laid himself loosely about the room, and permeated Space generally."
It only stands to reason that (1) in Azoth Waite is referring to an astral being and says it is not a true source of light; (2) the being in the card is an astral and represents a false light or false hope, at least this new evidence makes me lean harder that way.

It's probably not a coincidence either that one of Waite's other works is entitled Prince Starbeam: A Tale of Fairyland, written in 1879 and first published in 1889. I haven't read it but I found a review in The Unknown World, September 15, 1894:
"A book collected from 'most ancient and true commentaries,' astral and fairy chronicles, and other rare documents."
The Truth Is Out There.
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