Question regarding Payne-Towler's kabbalah


I'm not thoroughly familiar with Payne-Towler's beliefs regarding tarot and kabbalah, and I was reading page 124 in her Underground Stream book where she states "The only unmatching correspondence between the Astrological Wheel and the Tifareth wheel is the fact that Kircher placed Saturn upon Binah in the Supernal Triangle instead of on the Middle Pillar, where it would complete the pattern." So she moves Saturn from Binah to Da'ath as what she states to be an adjustment to Kircher.

However, I read the article "The Demise of the Golden Dawn" by Richard Collet which states that it's his belief that Mathers moved Saturn to Binah after moving the Moon from Malkuth to Yesod and so forth. He displays a 1652 chart of Kircher's version with the Moon clearly at Malkuth.

So, in effect, Payne-Towler's kabbalah charts would be a minor adjustment to Mathers rather than Kircher, which I find odd considering her distance from the Golden Dawn. I'm somewhat confused about this and would appreciate if anyone could help me with this, especially a reply from Payne-Towler if available. :) Thank you.


"The demise of the Golden Dawn" is full of errors (at least the version of it that appeared online at one time, but seems to have been taken down now). Christine's essays also tend to be full of errors, in one essay of hers I counted an average of three errors per paragraph. No wonder you're confused!

The GD attributions follow those in Agrippa (Three books of Occult Philosophy, vol. 2). The attribution of Saturn to Binah can be found in pre-Lurianic kabbalistic sources from at least the 13th century -- it is not a GD 'innovation'. The French or 'continental' schools (Levi, et al) followed the same attributions. For example, see 'The Qabalah' by Papus and others. So Christine is not following the GD here, but keeping to those also extent among the continental schools, who also used the design of the pre-Lurianic Cordovero/Kircher tree (the layout of Kircher, is as one of two described in Cordovero's 'Garden of Pomegranates', the other he described and in most editions is the only one of the two that is illustrated, is the Lurianic tree more common in modern Jewish kabbalah), but with attributions of a different school, such as those to be found in Agrippa. So Richard Collet is mistaken, Mathers did not 'move' Saturn to Binah, the GD here is following a pre-Lurianic kabbalistic tradition, one that is common to continental schools too, albeit one that is variant to that of modern Jewish kabbalah (and indeed to Kircher, who used different planet to sephiroth attributions). Also, the GD source for these attribution is the 'cipher manuscript', which was not written by Mathers.

Christine is mistaken too, if as you state she wrote that Kircher placed Saturn with Binah, Kircher attributed the 7 planets to the lowest 7 sephiroth as follows:

Jupiter - Chesed
Saturn - Pechad (Gevurah)
Sun - Tiphareth
Mars - Netzach
Venus - Hod
Mercury - Yesod
Moon - Malkuth

Here is a form of the Tree of Life in the GD cipher manuscript, in which one might fit the planetary hexagram (in this one the dragon head and tail is attributed to Malkuth):


In this pattern the Sphere of Saturn/Binah is grouped with the other two supernals. This grouping of the three supernals the GD called " the Supernals of the First Palace" and symbolizes "the sphere of Binah reflected through Daath", so there is no need for Christine's 'adjustment'.

Crowley refers to this grouping of the three supernals, the Supernals of the First Palace (there are seven palaces*), in the Book of Thoth: ""Saturn is in the position of the non-existent Sephira, Daath, but it resumes the characteristics of the three Sephiroth above the Abyss."


* "The Tablet before you represents the 10 Sephiroth combined in seven palaces. The first Palace contains Kether, Chokmah and Binah, the 2nd Chesed, the 3rd Geburah, the 4th Tiphareth, the 5th Netzach, the 6th Hod, the 7th Yesod and Malkuth." GD paper.


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Thanks, kwaw! Good to know. I was about to lose my sanity trying to wrap my mind around that one. :joke: Her diagrams make more sense now that I know her source.