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Quantum Tarot; High Priestess

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Quantum Tarot; High Priestess


I was sitting in a meeting tonight, wondering which person would say something that I could relate to the High Priestess. Le Fanu had suggested her as a card to work with, and I wanted to find something to write about.
I didn't pick up on anything, then understood that probably, the people who chose not to speak were closest to the mindset which this powerful card represents.

In Quantum she is the weak force, a subtler power, ruling the realm of decay, and nurturing sideways whacked weird birth and growth within decay's processes. As particles dissipate and greet oblivion, new, smaller
particles are born, as is kinetic energy.

She is linked to this force which we are invited to explore the very bare surface of, through reflection and introspection.

Sometimes when we meditate, we achieve clarity which can only come from stillness. Brushing away the busy juicy "bigger" thoughts allows for the quieter thought realms to momentarily appear. As our day to day thoughts dissipate, they can create a way for thoughts of a different color.
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Wnat I love about this card is the Nebula image Kay chose as the starting point for the artwork. The shape suggests the head and shoulders of a female figure as seen from behind so all I had to do was to add the hand then superimpose the spheres/pillars and the symbol of radioctive decay that she's holding. (See image attached).

If you look at this symbol, it's swathed in a spiral containing the letters TARO. This was intended to be an abstract view of the Traditional High Priestess's scroll seen on end. The letters float out of it and the whole seems to emerge from the radioactive decay symbol, suggesting the hidden mystery of change and decay.

What I love most of all about her is that you can't see her face - she's turned away from you yet her head is semi transparent, revealing newly created stars within. What better visual symbol could there be of her power? This made it very easy for me as the artist anyway! For me, I was reminded that even as something/someone is born, it is already in a state of decay in the most positive sense. The Universe, though great, remains finite and the more you look at it, the more birth and death become difficult to segregate.

Chris. xx
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Great descriptions guys

I always think of the weak force as something that works its power subtly, as Karl suggests, over long periods of time. The passage of time is a key factor for me with this card. The HP represents the slow, mysterious, evolutionary changes that take place within us as we live our lives. These processes often take place beneath the surface of consciousness and it's only occasionally that we come to an awareness of how far we have come, and how long we have been travelling (without even realising it).

I always think of the HP as representing the mystery of time and the Magician as the mystery of "the moment".
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How valuable it is for me to have both of your perspectives on this card.

Chris, I can't imagine ever forgetting the decaying process linked to the HP now that you've led me into your thoughts behind the scroll and symbol. My having missed the "TARO" completely is a reminder for me to, as Frida Kahlo said "Look Again!" Her head turned away to allow a viewing of the birth of new stars is just about RICH in metaphore. Seeing the work through the artist's eyes is a true gift.

Kay, I like your take on the HP, and bringing in the barely discernible changes happening over long periods of time. The vantage point access which this way of seeing the card offers has obvious value for sitters.
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Never notice, that there is the shape of a woman from behind.
Thnk you for pointing this out, it's interesting.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightgarden
Never notice, that there is the shape of a woman from behind.
Thnk you for pointing this out, it's interesting.
For me, The High Priestess was one of the strangest yet loveliest images to come out of this project. The fact that the suggested female figure is so vague in the Nebula image makes her remote and somehow inaccessible. She's definitely the 'virgin oracle', particularly when you see her next to the Empress who by contrast is so realistically human looking.

The Empress is also a nebula but seen from a different perspective - here we see the ghosts of life yet to be; trees, flowers and indeed the face of a woman. All these are born as the radiant heat of a star fuels complex reactions within the matter of her circling planetary child. Before this however, stars themselves are born within the womb of a nebula.

I think the difference between the Empress and the High Priestess for me lies in perspective. The Empress shows a view of change and growth from within the nebula, hence birth, fertility and evolution are clearer to see. By contrast, you're on the outside looking in with the High Priestess. You view the nebula from thousands of light years distance and also across a wider span of time. From this perspective, the workings of the universe become more of a mystery.

One final thing. We usually associate the colour blue with the High Priestess yet I always loved the fact that Kay chose a red nebula as the foundation for this image. It's just another unexplainable facet of her character.

Chris. xx
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Looking at the red field, I am reminded of stage curtains.
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Ive looked long and hard and I just cannot see the "hidden" woman. Where on earth is she?

Anyway, if I canīt see it, then itīs not meant to be. One of these days Iīll be doing a reading and it will spring out!!

I love the nuclear reactor symbol in the TORA spiral. Or am I completely wide of the mark, lol?


(ETA; just seen 78th Fools comment; it IS a nuclear symbol.. Change and decay...)

This card is magnificent. For me, it is as if the figure is about to materialise - like ectoplasm - in the same way that the Hermit card also shows a figure which appears to have already materialised out of a column of cosmic gases.

But this High Priestess. I think it is one of the most innovative tarot portrayals I can think of. How to give a well-known symbol a very new lease of life..
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le Fanu
Ive looked long and hard and I just cannot see the "hidden" woman. Where on earth is she?
The area of darkness, between red-lit interstellar gases, is her body. There are almost stage-curtains to either side of her in the verticalsm, making her Important. The hand to the right, tossing in the Tora symbol, also seems to be supplicating her. BTW, read the letters from right to left, against the spiral, starting and ending with the T.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Le Fanu
This card is magnificent. For me, it is as if the figure is about to materialise - like ectoplasm - in the same way that the Hermit card also shows a figure which appears to have already materialised out of a column of cosmic gases.
Traditionally speaking of our inner wisdom, the HPS could well be "about to materialise". Usually she is in the world but not of the world: in a nebula, she is not in the world and not of the world. But in her head, new stars are born, and around them new planets are born, and on them are a host of possible worlds. She is not in the world - the world is in her.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nisaba
She is not in the world - the world is in her.
What a lovely idea. I wish I'd thought of that!
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