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William G. Gray's Qabalah

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SlyR  SlyR is offline
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That is impressive. Gray was quite the scholar. All the expertise of Crowley without the wanton blasphemy.

Unfortunately, I'm still struggling with my adamant resistance to change.
Top   #11
Ophiel  Ophiel is offline
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The Gray Paths


I'm just surveying the paths superficially, and was hoping to provide an attachment for those without access to the Gray material, a chart of his assignments. But I don't have the proper format, and a full page document would be a rather large file.

Here is a discussion of the paths by Donald Tyson. For what it's worth...I think his conclusion is the different path assignments are each right, and wrong at the same time. I'm not familiar with Tyson's writing but am guessing he supports the GD assignments.

http://www.dontyson.150m.com/answer9.html

Superficially at least the Gray assignments lay down nicely. Going up the Middle Pillar we have THE MOON between Malkuth and Yesod, THE SUN between Yesod and Tiphareth, and THE STAR between Tiph and Kether. That's a nice, neat package, all celestial in order from the Moon to the Stars. This is a synopsis of our sources of light, the reflected light of the moon first, then our central source, the sun, and then beyond, the stars. The stars are even more important to us for light on a new moon.

The left pillar is THE FOOL between Malkuth and Hod, THE DEVIL bewteen Hod and Geburah, DEATH between Geburah and Binah, and THE HERMIT between Binah and Kether.

The right pillar is THE WORLD from Malkuth to Netzach, EMPRESS from Netzach to Chesed, EMPEROR from Chesed to Chokmah, and HIEROPHANT between Chokmah and Kether.

They do seem more balanced up the pillars, or at least in more logical pairs, not that it matters. I always found it odd with the GD assignments that since there is so much balance in the Tree, that the cards did not maintain that same sense of balance.

I won't complete the chart at this time, but will see if I can find that chart somewhere online so others can see, in the event we actually discuss the paths, the logic or absence of, etc.
Top   #12
lelandra  lelandra is offline
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Page about Gray's Qabalah


The Don Tyson page can no longer be found.

But I have made a page on this topic at my site.
http://www.lelandra.com/tarotbook/englishqabalah.htm
The English Qabalah of W.G. Gray

Lelandra
(Joan Cole)
Top   #13
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fyreflye  fyreflye is offline
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R J Stewart was a student of Gray's and both of his tarots are based on Gray's system. If you can find either of Stewart's OP trade paperback companion books to the Merlin Tarot (The Merlin Tarot or, better The Complete Merlin Tarot) you'll have a key to the only practical application of Gray's Qabalistic concepts to the tarot that I know of.
Top   #14
lelandra  lelandra is offline
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Merlin Tarot


I also have completed a page on how the Merlin Tarot implements this Qabalah

http://www.lelandra.com/tarotbook/rjspart1.htm

Joan Cole
Top   #15
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fyreflye  fyreflye is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lelandra
I also have completed a page on how the Merlin Tarot implements this Qabalah
http://www.lelandra.com/tarotbook/rjspart1.htm

Thanks for this! I've had your site bookmarked for ages but never looked closely enough to notice this page Now I'll have to see what other goodies I've missed.
I also ran across the Merlin early in my resurgence of interest in tarot and learned the Gray system before the standard one. Since I've never found the evidence for a Tree of Life/tarot connection particularly compelling I've never felt any need to choose between the systems. But I do agree with your comments about the gravity of R J's work; seriousness of any kind is rare in the commercial product that tarot has become. The Merlin is never discussed here and the Dreampower only rarely. R J's reluctance to produce a tarot with fully illustrated pips has cost him dearly. I do wish more AT members appreciated his work the way you do.
Top   #16
lelandra  lelandra is offline
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Well, I just did the Merlin page this weekend. I've had the notes in pen and paper form for ages, but decided they needed to be webbed now. I didn't mention it until I had run it by RJS and got the form of credits that he wanted on the page (he's pretty sensitive to copyright due to a nasty plagiarism incident that happened to him.)

I go back and forth as to whether a tree is needed. I'm pretty much sold on the historical authenticity argument that the correspondence was only added since the 18th century (though as a model agnostic, I'm happy to change my mind should actual evidence to the contrary emerge). I do think that memorizing the GD or Levi tree makes things much too complicated, because they have too many logical conflicts with the kind of energy that the two sephiroth are supposed to be mediating. Chariot as Cancer? Way too much rationalization to make that work for me... But a tree whose logic complements traditional iconology ... that might work.

As to prophets being unappreciated in their own time I think that the Tarot market (which is miniscule in itself) does reward cosmic foo-foo and other assorted kinds of fluffiness. But that is just a reflection of the overall culture we live in.

Lelandra
(Joan Cole)
Top   #17
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fyreflye  fyreflye is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lelandra
I do think that memorizing the GD or Levi tree makes things much too complicated, because they have too many logical conflicts with the kind of energy that the two sephiroth are supposed to be mediating. Chariot as Cancer? Way too much rationalization to make that work for me...
To a Cancer like myself the absurdity of that particular association is all too evident
Top   #18
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In terms of placing the Atouts on the various so-called 'paths', it may indeed be very likely that it arises from the 19th century.

If, however, there is any more intrinsic connection between the Atouts and the letters of the Hebrew alphabet (as I tend to think Mark Filipas's work indicates), then we have a very early correlation indeed - though not one which makes it to the Tree: earlier versions of the Tree did not have 22 'paths', but none, or sixteen (as examples).

Likewise, though I do not accept the GD version for myself, the correlations which results (such as Cancer and the Chariot) can be worked with in different ways. The first, a memorisation of what appears rationalisations of misfits, certainly makes things complicated - and a very Da'at like experience.

The second, however, is to develop an understanding of the various suggested correlations. In that case, sense - light - emerges as to what is correlated and why.

As I said, however, I personally do not favour this particular system that has, for some quirks of historical impulse, become the dominant view in published books.
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Cool


hi my 1st post here....I use the dreampower and merlin (though am very much a beginner with both) ...I also do Stewart's "magic"....and have attended workshops with the man....

SO Gray uses a new attribution ..well if I might mention a few things that havent been mentioned......

firstly the usual attributions (pretty much all but Gray's) are due to numbers.....take the classic Golden dawn one....the fool goes upon path 11...as it is card0....thus we take card=11+number of card....thus we can see Devil goes upon path 24.....etc etc....lets quote Gray himself on this:

"All the mystic muddle of tentative tarot and other uneccssary attributions came from the conclusions of those who failed to grasp, or deliberatly sought to obscure the significance of the paths. They are simply circuit for the energies arising from or through the sephiroth concerned. The only purpose for their numbers is to indicate the type and location of the enrgy in question. The real importance of the paths is their functiion and nature. If accuratre symbology can be found for this, well and good. Otherwise the issue becomes hopeless and confused" ---william G Gray (the ladder of the lights)

Stewart asserts that the Golden dawn system was given to beginners.....as aprt of their policy to root out the stupid(as was the way of doing things among the 19th century occult community)...later on they were given an alternative......

Now Gray's isnt "rigth" per se....there is no fixed attribution.....it as has been said just makes more "sense"...it relies upon meanings and not numbers....

Grays books (the previous mentioned) form the basis of Gray's "Occult" worldwide school...a school of like minded folk....called "Sangreal Solidality"...its not a rigid school...Gray merely created sign posts...its upto the school to lay the road and drive the car......So on a practical level...we can see Gray's attributioion has indeed NOT been universally accepted.....but it IS used..world wide.....Gray's book "Magical rhythm mehtods" is a classic in ceremonial magic..and uses gray's attribution.....

On another note...yes indeed he was an interesting man..... http://www.ignotuspress.com/practical.html Ignotus Press publish the well worth reading Biography of Bill Gray......well worth reading for any user of magic....be you a pagan or a magician or whatever......

wonderful website on the dreampower deck/merlin deck btw......I plan to do somewthing like this myself...but on a larger scale.....I shall read through this with glee and make comments if thats ok.......I think I spotted a mistake already..ha....

must start work though
on another note Caitlin and John matthews' book "walkers between worlds" list Gray's attributes within its pages

Gray's attributres are not universally known or accepted...but thsi is mainly due toALesteir Crowley...many still seem him as the fount of all knowledge.....ha so untrue...too many books merely copy other books as well...

"the height of knowledge is to know nothing" ----CRC
Top   #20




 


 


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