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A new Tree - The Star Tower

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aeon418 View Post
Do I detect a note of sarcasm? Or are you suddenly in favour of dreaming up theoretical maps of undiscovered countries?
Indeed, a touch of verbal irony can speak volumes. Even so, my post may benefit from a touch of clarification.

I'm sure that devising new attributions for the Ari and Gra trees can be interesting and illuminating for those who are interested in such things. I do not, however, consider this to constitute a challenge to 'established orthodoxy,' whatever that may be. In particular, considering the fashionable trend to trash anything pertaining to Golden Dawn, it may require more 'balls' to advocate its Kircher-tarot configuration than to challenge it.
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I dont know about my balls (they have a mind of their own) ... but MY mind wants to advocate it as well.

New versions of the Tree may make a great miss. This may not apply to anyone here or anyone who has developed a new system for ToL as, I am assuming, before they started work on a new one, they understood the old one first ... well, one hopes so.

I would be happier with someone who understood the trad versions of the Tree and then made a new one as opposed to someone that changed it as they thought it was wrong.

If the ToL was a schemata of a current paradigm relating to creation, the cosmos, manifestation, etc. it speaks volumes about the mind set of the time. And considering THAT one is sure to find a few 'bumps' in it - in the way modern minds think about such things. It is NOT a model then, and isnt now, of the cosmos but a model of how we 'saw' the cosmos.

Minds worked different back during the days of the early G.D. ... how much more so at the time of Kircher and other Kabbalists. Kircher lived around 1600 a time of great change in the world, the Church (which was a BIG influence back then) and human consciousness. previous to him (by a couple of hundred years) Pico della Mirandola had a variant view again and Mirandola's teacher Marsilio Ficino, probably demonstrated the classic outlook of Hermetic Christianity - especially his doctrine of 'star beings' that give the starts and celestial bodies specific influences ... an idea that has even passed (although much corrupted) into some types of modern astrology. (All this took a vast blow when the Corpus Hemeticum was re-dated to a more contemporary source and the Christian Church moved away from the 'Pagan' gnosis it had been previously incorporating .... this was one of the great significant moments in Hermeticism and needs to be understood as a background influence all the way through ... especially on Cornelius Agrippa { and perhaps explains the seemingly major disparity between two of his greatest works} ).

One simple example of how these people thought can be shown in their reversals (to us) in how they thought about that age old question; 'Why does stuff move around the way it does?' Nowadays, we know that if something has motion, and there is no other force to stop it, it just keeps going, conversely, if it is at rest it will stay that way until a force moves it. Not so in the ancient world ... things needed force to KEEP them moving and nothing could be 'at rest' as everything was being drawn into the centre of the Universe, which was inside the earth. Everything had to have a constant mover ... or deflector from it's trajectory to the centre of the earth. This had massive implications on how people thought about things and the construction of the cosmos ... its just one example of many.

By changing the Tree away from these ancient concepts we are adapting it to the way we think NOW ... which is fine and maybe even necessary - I have done it myself; now I have a Tree that is wonderfully relevant to me and my modern psychology (and the problems I have and modern psychological paradigm has - which are different from the older paradigms), a series of Trees as an insight into the old hermetic mind set ... and, of course, one for my Thoth cards - since I developed this I have pretty much lost interest in 'how to fix up' the Tree of Life.

I guess the point of this rambling post is to bring attention to the fact, for those that may have not realised, new students, whatever; that 'right and wrong' Trees are relative constructions and 'old versions' are part and parcel of studying the hermetic tradition and understanding changes and developments in human consciousness and evolution .

Dont throw the baby out with the bath water ... you might want to examine that 'baby' ... it is what grew into you.

" Behind the figures of the Beast and his Bride are ten luminous rayed circles; they are the Sephiroth latent and not yet in order, for every new Aeon demands a new system of classification of the Universe."
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There is a mindset that believes that Jean-Baptiste Alliette and Alphonse Louis Constant were on the right track. Mathers, Waite, and Crowley stole their ideas but didn't understand them correctly, and therefore messed everything up. Among other things they presumably got the Hebrew letter attibutions of the trumps wrong, and consequently associated almost all the trumps with the wrong paths. Many people working on new trees are convinced that the Golden Dawn got it wrong, so they want to fix the mess.
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The real issue is not really which version of the Tree and Hebrew letter attributions is "correct," but whether it does what the individual user wants it to do. The Golden Dawn version of the Tree and its Thelemic variant work very well for many of those who have studied it intensively, so for them, if it ain't broke, why fix it?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRichard View Post
The real issue is not really which version of the Tree and Hebrew letter attributions is "correct," but whether it does what the individual user wants it to do. The Golden Dawn version of the Tree and its Thelemic variant work very well for many of those who have studied it intensively, so for them, if it ain't broke, why fix it?
Everyone's a sinner anyhow. No one should be studying Kabbalah anyway unless they're Jewish, over forty, married with at least one boy and one girl, and have spent their entire lives studying the Torah. Unless someone here or from the original GD can claim those qualifications, it stands to reason no one is correct or incorrect. It's all personal opinion, with nobody being able to claim "true" attributions simply because they don't exist, or if they do, no one has the qualifications to either uphold or deny them. I mean, as with anything else, if you go back to the purest of the purists, you'll often find they don't want you.

In my view it is easy to quibble over these planets or that, this or that order or what have you, but it really is immaterial. The "spirit" of the Tree is far more important, and this is where the GD shines, even outdoing the celebrated Gra Tree in many ways (do I have to add "in my own, personal opinion" or is that a given?).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRichard View Post
To hell with established orthodoxy! So what if a certain Tree of Life (Kircher) already models both the lightning bolt of creation and the serpent path of return? Why not invent a new Tree of Life which works better, and also an entirely new tarot deck to go along with it? Originality should be the motto of postmodernism. Two plus three equals five? Forget it! Rigid orthodoxy deserves to be tossed into the pit!
Dwtw

Unless I missed something, the Kircher Tree that I studied for many years does not model the Lightning Flash, since there is no path from Binah to Chesed. And any Tree could include the Serpent of Return, since that is, by definition, all of the paths NOT on the Lightning Flash. Nevertheless, I find the Kircher arrangement useful for certain purposes.

There have been some interesting posts in this thread, but in the event some of the opinions are concerned with the Star Tower in particular, perhaps I should clarify.

The point of this new(er) Tree is to attempt a correlation with the Hebrew planetary letters, and the two overtly planetary trumps: the Sun and Moon. There really is only one way to do that and be consistent with the Sefer Yetzirah - the alef-bet has to start at the World trump and work backwards. The rest of the details are derived from a search for symmetry, as it relates to the Tarot.

The reason I posted this idea for a Tree diagram on this site instead of somewhere else is because it is focused on the Tarot, rather than a number of other characteristics that can be derived from the Tree of Life (no matter which version you use).

But of course, any arrangement of the Tree and Tarot is just something a person or persons came up with and thought was useful. Tradition is great until it is counterproductive. The Star Tower is no more 'correct' than any other formulation of a Tree. It has very specific goals, and very specific steps were taken to arrive at them, all of which are based in one traditional viewpoint or another. The same was done for every other Tree in history; Kircher, ARI, Gra, what have you. They're just frameworks. I have personally worked the 'Golden Dawn' version for many years before branching out into a new realm of qabalah based on Trigrammaton. I have also studied Lurianic Kabbalah, (though illegitimately - I am not Jewish but my son is). The Gra is less familiar to me - I have not worked within that system to any great extent.

The catalyst for even trying such an exercise was the recent discussion of the Gra Tree, and the lure of discovering whether one could actually align the Tarot and Alef-bet in a way that made sense, without the completely arbitrary reassignments made by the Golden Dawn. But it's not that the G.D. was 'wrong' - because there is no 'right'. My own arrangement is arbitrary in some respects also. Nevertheless, I find it interesting, and useful in terms of Tarot, and perhaps someone else will also. If not, then I've only used up a few precious hours of life creating a tree structure. I've used up far more of that valuable commodity on things that are far less interesting :-)


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Quote:
Originally Posted by RLG View Post
......Unless I missed something, the Kircher Tree that I studied for many years does not model the Lightning Flash, since there is no path from Binah to Chesed......
What do you mean? What paths? There's NOTHING. Then ZAP! There are the Sephirot! The lightning bolt is a theoretical polygonal line joining the Sephirot in numerical order. You seem to be supposing that the Tree was there before the Sephirot.

Daath, the Abyss, and the Serpent are implicit also, but like the lightning bolt, they are not usually superimposed on the model because they are not components of the Tree.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRichard View Post
What do you mean? What paths? There's NOTHING. Then ZAP! There are the Sephirot! The lightning bolt is a theoretical polygonal line joining the Sephirot in numerical order. You seem to be supposing that the Tree was there before the Sephirot.
Dwtw

I understand the Lightning Flash as the set of actual paths that traverse the Tree from sefira 1 to sefira 10. You are explaining it as a theoretical construct, presumably because any group of 10 entities would have relationships at least in potentia. Surely those relationships would eventually be manifested as the paths, and still be a lightning flash?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RLG View Post
Dwtw

I understand the Lightning Flash as the set of actual paths that traverse the Tree from sefira 1 to sefira 10. You are explaining it as a theoretical construct, presumably because any group of 10 entities would have relationships at least in potentia. Surely those relationships would eventually be manifested as the paths, and still be a lightning flash?
.....
...Why...?
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The Lightning Flash has to be 'implicit' in any number system IMO ... numbers just aren't values of 'how many things there are' they generate from .... .

The 3 / 4 'jump' is probably the most important aspect on the Tree and the concepts behind single digit numbers ... ie 'generation'... each number 'must' form from the previous. This 'implicitness' or 'impelling' is IMO the idea behind the lightning flash. One might be even able to demonstrate it mathematically ... with implicit differentiation or something like that ... ?

The paths I see as relationships between the numbers , not necessarily as above (although they may at places in the Tree coincide { but not 'co-inside' as in the lightning flash} ) but as one to another, and IMO a totally different kettle of fish, obviously the 22 paths are only some of the possibilities of connections ... why this particular selection and arrangement on the Tree of Life is something I have pondered ... but ....

.
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