Skill, diplomacy, address, subtlety; sickness, pain, loss, disaster, snares of enemies; self-confidence, will.Previous card
The High Priestess
Tarot card meaning:
Unrevealed future, hidden influences at work. Of special value for artists, poets, composers, mystics. When this card appears in a man’s reading, it represents the perfect woman all men dream of; in a woman’s reading, it may indicate that she can find such virtues in herself or in a friend.
Arthur E. Waite - The Pictorial Key to the Tarot :
She has the lunar crescent at her feet, a horned diadem on her head, with a globe in the middle place, and a large solar cross on her breast. The scroll in her hands is inscribed with the word Tora, signifying the Greater Law, the Secret Law and the second sense of the Word. It is partly covered by her mantle, to shew that some things are implied and some spoken.
She is seated between the white and black pillars - J. and B. - of the mystic Temple, and the veil of the Temple is behind her: it is embroidered with palms and pomegranates. The vestments are flowing and gauzy, and the mantle suggests light - a shimmering radiance.
She has been called occult Science on the threshold of the Sanctuary of Isis, but she is really the Secret Church, the House which is of God and man. She represents also the Second Marriage of the Prince who is no longer of this world; she is the spiritual Bride and Mother, the daughter of the stars and the Higher Garden of Eden.
She is, in fine, the Queen of the borrowed light, but this is the light of all. She is the Moon nourished by the milk of the Supernal Mother.
In a manner, she is also the Supernal Mother herself - that is to say, she is the bright reflection. It is in this sense of reflection that her truest and highest name in bolism is Shekinah - the co-habiting glory.
According to Kabalism, there is a Shekinah both above and below. In the superior world it is called Binah, the Supernal Understanding which reflects to the emanations that are beneath. In the lower world it is MaIkuth - that world being, for this purpose, understood as a blessed Kingdom that with which it is made blessed being the Indwelling Glory.
Mystically speaking, the Shekinah is the Spiritual Bride of the just man, and when he reads the Law she gives the Divine meaning. There are some respects in which this card is the highest and holiest of the Greater Arcana.
The High Priestess card divinatory meanings:
Secrets, mystery, the future as yet unrevealed; silence, tenacity; mystery, wisdom, science.
P. D. Ouspensky – The Symbolism Of The Таrot :
When I lifted the first veil and entered the outer court of the Temple of Initiation, I saw in half darkness the figure of a woman sitting on a high throne between two pillars of the temple, one white, and one black. Mystery emanated from her and was about her. Sacred symbols shone on her green dress; on her head was a golden tiara surmounted by a two-horned moon; on her knees she held two crossed keys and an open book. Between the two pillars behind the woman hung another veil all embroidered with green leaves and fruit of pomegranate.
And a voice said:
"To enter the Temple one must lift the second veil and pass between the two pillars. And to pass thus, one must obtain possession of the keys, read the book and understand the symbols. Are you able to do this?"
"I would like to be able," I said.
Then the woman turned her face to me and looked into my eyes without speaking. And through me passed a thrill, mysterious and penetrating like a golden wave; tones vibrated in my brain, a flame was in my heart, and I understood that she spoke to me, saying without words:
"This is the Hall of Wisdom. No one can reveal it, no one can hide it. Like a flower it must grow and bloom in thy soul. If thou wouldst plant the seed of this flower in thy soul -- learn to discern the real from the false. Listen only to the Voice that is soundless... Look only on that which is invisible, and remember that in thee thyself, is the Temple and the gate to it, and the mystery, and the initiation."
Fruitfulness, action, initiative, length of days; the unknown, clandestine; also difficulty, doubt, ignorance.Next card
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