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High Priestess Question

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DPJ  DPJ is offline
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High Priestess Question


Hi,

Newbie here. Sorry if this is a repeat question. For some reason my computer won't let me perform a search within this topic. Does anyone know the significance of the letters on the pillars in this card (B and J)?

Also, can anyone share their study method with me? What is the best way to become fluent at reading the Rider-Waite deck? Book recommendations are welcome as well.

Thanks!

DPJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DPJ View Post
Hi,

Newbie here. Sorry if this is a repeat question. For some reason my computer won't let me perform a search within this topic. Does anyone know the significance of the letters on the pillars in this card (B and J)?

Also, can anyone share their study method with me? What is the best way to become fluent at reading the Rider-Waite deck? Book recommendations are welcome as well.

Thanks!

DPJ
Boaz and Jachin were the names of the two pillars at the front of Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem. I don't know how to help anyone become a good Rider-Waite reader. Just practice a lot, I suppose. Mary K. Greer has written some good books.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DPJ View Post
Hi,

Newbie here. Sorry if this is a repeat question. For some reason my computer won't let me perform a search within this topic. Does anyone know the significance of the letters on the pillars in this card (B and J)?

Also, can anyone share their study method with me? What is the best way to become fluent at reading the Rider-Waite deck? Book recommendations are welcome as well.

Thanks!

DPJ
B and J stand for Boaz and Jachin, the two pillars at either side of the entrance to the Holy of Holies in Solomon's Temple.

I'm afraid that anything I say abuot the significance of the HP sitting between them, in front of the Holy of Holies (protecting it? not allowed to enter it? mediating between us and it?) will be taken apart by people who've studied the deck more than I have. I just know the Bible really well!
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Only the High Priest (I.e., the highest initiate) was allowed to enter the Holy of Holies, as that was where, in essence, God made his earthly home. The Priestess represents the wisdom behind and above all written rituals, and indeed, above consciousness itself. Behind (above) her on the Tree of Life is Keter, the sum of all potentialities (God). On the Tree she is between the Hierophant and the Chariot, and is the balance between feminine and masculine, and paves the way for ultimate annihilation of all separations.

My main advice is to study Qabalah for a few months, enough to understand its basics. It is the backbone of the deck, its essence. Once you have a familiarity with it, the RWS and all other Golden Dawn decks will open up to you in ways you didn't think possible.
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Here is a diagram of Solomon's Temple.
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DPJ  DPJ is offline
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Thanks for these interpretations and suggestions!! I will look into the Kabbalah!

DPJ
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I suggest that you have a really good look at the card .

Let me point out a couple of things that may send your natural intelligence into HUNT mode.

Firstly there's a Veil behind the HP.

It's decoration is pomegranate fruit. (lots of seeds)

I seems the person pictured is a female.

then there's the glimpses of a landscape behind that veil .

Check out the TORA scroll ,folded. Not yet opened.

The crescent moon is underfoot.( that usually meant understood)




My suggestion is to consider the birthing process and to consider the type of world awaiting an entrance.


I also suggest you come to your own conclusions ....

There's an interesting book available by Russell Sturgess titled, Metanoia. It goes through the Majors and is one of the best I could suggest to the inquiring mind.

The roads less travelled tend to be the most interesting .
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The fact the pillars are labeled gives significant clues to the orientation of The High Priestess. We know Solomon's Temple faced east:

"Then he brought me back to the door of the temple, and behold, water was issuing from below the threshold of the temple toward the east (for the temple faced east). The water was flowing down from below the south end of the threshold of the temple, south of the altar." Ezekiel 47:1

The only question that remains is whether Jachin was to the north and Boaz to the south, or vice versa. 1 Kings 7:21 of the King James Version says Jachin was set up on the right and Boaz on the left. Whether right was north and left was south depends on the orientation of the viewer, inside the Temple looking out or outside looking in. Just a few verses later in1 Kings 7:39, it says the "sea" was on the right side, toward the southeast:

"And he set the sea on the right side of the house eastward over against the south."

Josephus confirms this orientation (Antiquities Bk. Vlll, 3). This shows the right/left orientation was from inside. That would make Jachin to the south and Boaz to the north.

What does all of this have to do with The High Priestess card? If Waite's orientation is Jachin south and Boaz north, that would put The High Priestess inside the Temple. It's interesting to note that if that's the case, the water that flows from her robe flows south and toward the east to join the river behind her (east), as described above in Ezekiel 47. The image linked to below shows how it would look.

It's hard to say if all of this was intentional by Waite or Smith, but it does make me wonder.

Temple
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DPJ  DPJ is offline
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Wow! So much great information, thank you! I'm going book shopping this weekend

DPJ
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Does the location of the HP inside the temple suggest an error with the illustration of the card?
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