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Join Date: 21 Sep 2007
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Tarot Tree


Okay, here’s a rundown of the Tarot Tree, from Alexandra Genetti’s companion book to the Wheel of Change Tarot. I think (from my admittedly now rather skewed perspective ) that you could work with this layout with any deck. I look forward to hearing about others’ thoughts.

It’s laid out like . . . a tree! I’m going to place the cards using their traditional RWS numbers (Strength as VIII, Justice as XI) using Roman numerals to avoid it looking like a “spread”.

………….………………………………I………………………………………….....

…………………………………….VI…..XIV……………………………………...

.…………………………….XVII…XXI……XVIII………………………………..

………………………..XIX……..IV……XII…….XV…………………………..

……………………XX……VIII…….III……...II….XIII……………………….

………………..XI……IX………VII…….X……..V……XVI…………………..

……………..……………………………0…………………………………………....

As one follows the levels downwards, a progression of increasing applicability to everyday life becomes apparent. Where the upper cards are more archetypal (as we traditionally see the Majors), the lower cards are more obviously effective in teaching us about our everyday life.

The Fool floats about the outside, for, as we all know, he is all and none at once. He is potential, pregnant but meaningless without definition. He is the “shadow” of the Magician.

The first line, comprising the Magician, is the realm of the awakening consciousness. It is the ego and the realisation of individuality, as well as the power of one person to act alone without influence from others. It is the power of the idea and the word. As the numeral 1, it contains all within it.

The Lovers and Temperance reflect the first realisation of Self as opposed to Other. This is where the Self begins to define its relationship to Other, and know its boundaries. Though it looks simple, this line is complex and very very dynamic. Two represents the initial split of the One into two beings.

Three is associated with the Goddess, and so third line is the cosmic Triple Goddess, where the Star is the Maiden goddess, the World the Mother, and the Moon stands for the Crone. As the centre of the line, the World sits right below the Magician, and they represent two distinct ways (male and female) of creating.

Four, as the number of the God, represents the phases of the year and the Horned God dying and rising as his Mother’s consort and his own opponent. The Sun is the newly born God (or twin Gods, Night and Day as depicted in my Sun card), the Emperor is the God at the peak of his power, the Hanged Man represents him waning into the dark of the year, and the Devil represents the death of the old God at the hands of his son who is his brother and himself.

Five represents Genetti’s “five stages of womanhood”, which, with some tweaking, should be able to represent 100% of the population LOL rather than just 50%! Judgment is here represented as the beginning of life, rather than its end, and as rebirth or awakening. Strength shows a young woman at the onset of menses, seizing her birthright and claiming her own personal power. The Empress, closely related to the World which she sits below, represents motherhood and fecundity, the time of life when a person brings forth his or her best work. The High Priestess shows a person in the waning years, when the noontime of their life is behind them and their experience has led to wisdom. Finally, Death claims all to return them across the river in a glorious sunset, to be reborn in the Judgment card again.

The sixth line is my favourite, so far. Working outwards from the centre, it shows two life paths, reflecting the numerical theme of choice and decision around the Sixes in this deck. The Wheel of Fortune represents a person who reacts to life and believes him or herself to be a victim of circumstance. In this case, the Hierophant represents their externalisation of authority and willingness to blame others and outside influences for misfortune or lack of good fortune. The end result of this life pattern is The Tower, an unfortunate end (many times over, perhaps) where the person does not learn (“build”) anything. The alternative path starts with the Chariot, in this deck representing awareness of connections and effects of one element to another of a person’s life and relationships. The authority figure in this instance is the Hermit, the inner light of knowledge and wisdom. The end result is Justice, here shown as an ideal of balance and awareness of the interconnectedness of the whole world.

\m/ Kat
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