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The knights are unaware of your presence, but the horses look afraid

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The knights are unaware of your presence, but the horses look afraid


All of the Knights are facing in some direction other than outward to the reader of the card. The Horses can see us just fine though. In fact, the only knight where we see his eyes is teh knight of wands.

The horse of teh Knight of Cups looks downright panicked as his rider is presenting the crab crested chalice upward. Maybe not panicked, but depending on the situation of the cards it may be, it just looks very very aware. This knight is leaving his entire backside open to attack, and all the horse can do is buck and kick with limited protection.

The knight of disks looks totally unaware of our presence and has his entire side open for attack, his horse looks more aware than he does, and is willing to make up more than enough to protect the rider. You can barely see his face, let alone his eyes, it doesn't count, the knight does not see you without changing his perspective.

The knight of air is darting across the card, in this snapshot the horse is awre of our presence, but knows that it is a fleeting one. The knight need not be aware like the disk counterpart.
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Very interesting observations, paradoxx, thank you!
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Thanks Paradoxx,

This is my power deck, but I had never considered the directions the Knights were facing - I am still fairly new to the study of Thoth Tarot and fear I may be doing too much reading and not enought card contemplation.

I wonder, since the Knights are the highest authority card of each suit, is the message then that we should be looking in the same direction as the Knight? Following his lead, so to speak. I have some trouble with court cards in general, but have found this deck much easier to get a feel for in that respect.

Thea Lynx
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I have noticed this as well on the passive cards, and I've always taken it to be a bit of a reflection on chronology. The Knight himself is focused on the task at hand, while the steed gazes back from where they came from. Thus, the Knight card is not completely forward sighted, but aware of the past, and where it came from as well, though in a less focused way. That the steed is the one looking backwards is fitting, since to me it represents the vehicle upon which the Knight arrived at its current position, and where it is heading. The character of the horse has much to say about what got the Knight along the path he is on. It also has to do with a matter of internal trust. The horse trusts the rider to steer him in the right direction (though note that direction might not be what we consider right), and meanwhile the rider trusts the horse to be aware of dangerous elements from the past. This sort of divided attention to detail is part of what makes the passive elements passive. The mellow, almost peaceful properties of the Knight of Disks is an exemplary case. The horse is again gazing back, but both are just watching and simply existing. Entirely different mood and intention than any of the other Knights. Incidentally the Knight of Disks is one of my favorite cards; I love the helmet, but the whole feel of the card nails Disks to a T.

The placement in the Fire and Air suit is entirely different though! Both rider and horse are facing determined in the same direction; and both are in an attitude of extreme attention to the goal ahead. I say "ahead" but I think it is important to take into account the direction of their attention. Swords in particular is focusing all of their attention on coming back towards the reading. It is a more retrospective card than most.

A few other contrast and similarities between the four:
  • All four directions on the Tree of Life are addressed. Ascendancy, Descendancy, Expansion and Contraction.
  • The Knight of Cups seems to be the most naive. He is the only one without a helm, and seems so fixed upon the exaltation of the crab and chalice that he wouldn't even pay attention to his horse if something of danger did indeed approach from the rear. He is also completely unarmed.
  • Earth and Fire are caped, Water and Air have some form of idealistic wings.
  • The horse of the Knight of Disks is the only one with all four hooves planted in the ground. Another detail that adds weight and gravity to the card. This sense of peace.
  • The Knight of Wands is the only one who seems to be controlling his horse. The other horses seem to be acting of their own will in accordance with the flow of the card. The Knight of Wands needs control, however. I think the lesser autonomy of the horse on this card is a good indicator of the type of intelligence used by the Wands in general.
  • In the same vein, notice that the Knight of Cups is in fact holding the reigns, but the horse is actually looking in the opposite direction that the Knight is pulling. That is an interesting detail that can bring a twist to any reading.
  • The Knight of Swords is the only one who does not appear to be "fixed" to the environment in any fashion. He is moving through his environment at terrifically high speeds. The horse of Disks has something odd going on with its legs, to me it always seems more like the horse is actually growing out of the ground like a tree. The cape of the Knight of Wands becomes the lake of fire, just as the wing/cape of Cups becomes the waves.
There is a lot more to be found in these cards. This is why I love the Thoth deck so much. There are piles of structural data and deep meanings behinds the cards, but the illustrations are just as festering with divinatory material; most of which are just general enough to bring a host of intricacies to any reading.

Great stuff.
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Welcome, Aloft!! I like that you jump right in and you jump in so well!! wow, great observations!!

I was thinking that the Knight of cups (which is actually the King) is VULNERABLE, which is an incredibly powerful way to be..... I know from practicing Akido, that being fully relaxed enables chi to flow abundantly, giving me greater strength than any physical strength I could muster up. also, I am learning that vulnerability is actually an emotionally powerful space to be in, for it enables intimacy.... It, truthfully, enables one to be REAL!!!

So, for me, the Knight of Cups has to be Vulnerable, as that is the complete and full way of emoting and being emotional!!
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Great post Aloft! Welcome to the forum. Yeah, the knights are incredible.

I am so glad, paradoxx, that you pointed out how the horses are looking at the viewer. I did a whole thread on faces a while back: Faceless Art -- spawned in slime? meant to explore Frieda Harris's unwillingness to paint faces, which seemed to anger Crowley. Faceless art was alienating to him. At the time of that thread I went through the deck to see which cards had faces, and noted that they were very few indeed, however I totally missed the knights horses!!

I'd never noticed them before, its like a little wink from the artist, funny how the animals on this deck are more human than the people.

My favorite is the knight of cups with his blue angel wings and billowing blue waves surrounding him made of peacocks!!

Bye the way, the Cups horse doesn't look afraid to me, he looks aware and friendly, curious even. The Wands horse looks like he's having a great time charging, the swords horse looks annoyed, or bored, (ROFL), the Disks horse looks a bit wary maybe, or is it he is hungry?
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Quote:
Originally posted by skytwig
So, for me, the Knight of Cups has to be Vulnerable, as that is the complete and full way of emoting and being emotional!!
This is more philosophical, but I would suggest that being vulnerable is not so positive, but forms when some positive attributes exist. Real strength and balance would be having those positive attributes, without feeling vulnerable. The feeling of vulnerability is a weakness because it is only fear blooming out from the qualities, which are themselves, strong. One who is strong will not fear being taking advantage of, since those who are truly strong have nothing to take because they give everything they are. You cannot steal from one who is handing it to you.

In relation to the card, we see this very thing happening. The Knight is giving, or handing the very symbol of its being, to some unseen ideal out of the painting.
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Quote:
Originally posted by firemaiden
...or is it he is hungry? :laugh:
Then he'd be quite daft! Surrounded by a field of ripe grain. :)
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zodiac connections


Like most traditional decks, there is a zodiac sign to each of the higher courts, the page/princess is the element itself. This system varies from deck to deck, artist to artist but nonethe less it is there.

Knight of wands, Aries. The king/knight of fire has always made it difficult to interpret the symbols, but this one is rather simple. The knight has authority over the horse, and the predominance of red and orange gives a feeling of a warm herat and a heated mind. This knight is the only one with chainmail armor, and of course the saddle has its own feeling to it.

Knight of cups, Cancer. Is the knight turning away from the viewer? The horse knows what we are doing and while the knight may be telepathic, he has his attention on his "gift." The peacock and featherd wings are a nice touch of freedom, but the peacock does not fly. I like the green armor.

Knight of Disks. Capricorn. The crest on the helmut rings of germanic influence, as does the cape. The waves of energy emmitign from the shield is the focus of the knight (who does not seem to have any face). And that is one big horse. Considering that the armor that this knight is wearing is heavy, the horse would have to be heavily built.

Knight of swords, Libra, Darting through the sky thsi dragonfly like knight is preped and ready for battle, whatever it may bring. I assume the ability to fly would require the lightest armor of all the knights. Iguessthe only thing that is amisi s that the wings are coming from the knights helmut, representing freedom of thought but make for a strange image to behold.

All the knights have spurs on the boots, even teh knight of swords, its hard to see, but it is there. (I think)

Thats all for now folks.
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The Thoth Deck has intimidated me since I purchased it last fall. However, I decided to make a concentrated effort to study it (kind of a delayed New Year's Resolution) so I will probably be more active in this board soon as I attempt to learn.

I have a question though. Thea Lynx, you mentioned that this is your "power deck". I was just curious what you mean by that. I think I know, but just want to know what the official take is on what constitutes a power deck.

Thanks,
Dan
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