Alchemy, Hermeticism & Tarot?

blackroseivy

Yeah, BIG thanx definitlely!
 

venicebard

blackroseivy said:
I have a project underway involving Tarot imagery & Alchemical associations.

. . .

Oh! - I also need the astrological associations of each of the 22 keys.

Can anyone help me out? :)
I can't help with links, only with ideas. Modern Hermetic theories surrounding tarot lack solid ground. My bardic theory of Tarot-of-Marseilles origin, however, not only rests on solid ground (medieval Keltic bardic tradition) but has broken through to the deepest levels of Hermetic Science and tarot imagery, but of course the proof is in the pudding (since I have no degrees, thank G-d).

I will give you briefly how the bardic tree-calendar distributes tree-letters/trumps to the zodiac, though I would not classify the zodiac as astrological but rather astrology as 'zodiacal'. Let's see:

B-birch-capricorn is V LePape,
L-rowan-aquarius is XIIII Temperance,
N-ash-pisces is XIII,
F-alder-aries is VIII LaJustice
S-willow-taurus is XVI LaMaisonDieu,
H-hawthorn-gemini is LeMat,
D-oak-cancer is XII LePendu,
T-holly-leo is XI LaForce,
K-hazel-virgo is VIIII L'Hermite,
M-vine-libra is VI L'Amoureux,
G-ivy-scorpio is X LaRoue deFortune,
P-whitten-sagittary is VII LeChariot,
and R-elder, the 13th month that encloses no sign (signs being points, not months) and thus is banished to the center in the 12-month zodiacal calendar, is XV LeDiable.

The sequence of the waning year (summer-fall, the underside of the wheel) is 12-11-9-6-10-7-5 (skipping the 15 that was banished to the center): when we add 6 again onto the end (a return to the middle, the first 6 being mem and the second one mem-sofit, in Hebrew), the sequence of differences is 1-2-3-4-3-2-1, identifying the four layers or levels of the Cauldron or bottom half of the zodiac with the elements in their natural order, fire-air-water-earth. The subject of the triads and how their assignment in astrology relates to their primordial assignment, confirmable by the Zohar (a medieval Kabbalistic work), in which the elements above are, on the summer or outer (nature) side, each the manifestation of the preceding element's triad is somewhat involved, but primordially fire (flame) points up (towards aries the head), air back (since it blows in one's face when moving forward), water down towards libra (direction it flows), and earth forward (towards cancer, the way the earthly body itself faces or points). All but air have been twirled one.

Anyway, one last thing: in the Judaic (and probably originally bardic as well) way of reckoning, the above manifested signs are grouped together as doubles and placed on the Cauldron of the surroundings (from cancer's horizon without to capricorn's horizon within), with R in M's place -- R's proper station, where omnipresent M (intermediate mem) sounds in R's absence (it is the base of the tongue or zodiacal Egg, and R's absence therefrom in Keltic lore indicates it is rolled, rather, on the tip (aries), whereas R is guttural (and thus at libra) in Hebrew.

This leaves the vowels to occupy the 7 bottommost signs in the order U-O-A-AA-E-I-II but with A, pulled out to be a mother letter (one of three, along with M and S), replaced by Q at virgo-the-womb (Q being KK and K being virgo) and S (a mother) replaced by SS or St (ogham 'Z') at taurus. Oh, and at aries, F, which is the Corn Spirit extending beyond the seed or tongue, is replaced by an S sound, samekh, since F is, technically, not on the tongue (zodiacal Egg), the vowels belonging there only because as the bottom half they represent the tongue-root. [Edited to add: The Cualdron of surroundings, then, represents the mouth in which the this tongue sits, opened to the sky (as if in prayer to a higher power).] When translated to their (mostly consonantized) Hebrew equivalents, the 12 simples are, thus:

VIII Justice or samekh/aries (shaped like head)
XX Judgement or tzaddi/taurus (throat in breathing and swallowing)
The Fool or cheyt/gemini (shaped like shoulders)
XVII Star or vav/cancer (breast-pouring-forth-milk in Phoenician)
IIII Emperor or ayin/leo
XVIII Moon or qof/virgo (shaped like womb/navel/birth-canal)
XXI World or teyt/libra (shaped like legs folded beneath one)
II Papess or heh/scorpio (8th sign, 8th day, Covenant, Abraham)
III Empress or zayin/sagittary (terminal filament of spine, or thigh)
XVIIII Sun or yod/capricorn (mid-spine, or knee)
XIIII Temperance or lamedh/aquarius (arms swinging, seen from above)
XIII or nun/pisces (last sign, waving-goodbye in Phoenician)

As for deeper layers of Hermetic Science 'n all that, here is a tidbit. With aries-libra as central vertical axis and thus the middle of seven Pillars of Wisdom, the months to right and left form the floors and ceilings of the other six. Each is assigned (by numerical considerations involving valence, among other things!) a planet/metal -- left (cancer) to right (capricorn), they are luna-mercury-copper-[none, or gold]-iron-tin-lead, with the proviso that sol occupies the bottom half of silver's column, as if representing the alchemist outside the Egg or vessel reflected in silver's (luna's) mirror. Then, it is simply that the planetary metal that rules a sign is that whose column the round has just traversed in arriving at that sign.

The reason I know this last is that there is a further (numerical) consideration that extends mercury's (poisonous) vapors throughout the upper half of the outer vessel, and so on, but this is a history thread and the above is considered ahistorical around here, so that's all for now.


Ross G Caldwell said:
You might also try Adam McLean - he is on aeclectic and is a world authority on alchemy. See his speculative article on tarot and alchemy at
http://www.levity.com/alchemy/mantegna.html
Tarocchi of Montegna is hardly tarot, I should think. His 2nd-to-last sentence reads: "So could it not be that our present day tarot cards should perhaps be seen as arising out of the hermetic ideas at the foundation of the Renaissance, rather then from the Jewish Kaballah?" I find this puzzling, in that Kabbalah and Hermetic Science are the same thing as seen from slightly different perspectives, and Alchemy's most ancient revered sage is Maria the Jewess.
 

Bat Chicken

venicebard said:
My bardic theory of Tarot-of-Marseilles origin, however, not only rests on solid ground (medieval Keltic bardic tradition) but has broken through to the deepest levels of Hermetic Science and tarot imagery, but of course the proof is in the pudding (since I have no degrees, thank G-d).

I will give you briefly how the bardic tree-calendar distributes tree-letters/trumps to the zodiac, though I would not classify the zodiac as astrological but rather astrology as 'zodiacal'. Let's see:

B-birch-capricorn is V LePape,
L-rowan-aquarius is XIIII Temperance,
N-ash-pisces is XIII,
F-alder-aries is VIII LaJustice
S-willow-taurus is XVI LaMaisonDieu,
H-hawthorn-gemini is LeMat,
D-oak-cancer is XII LePendu,
T-holly-leo is XI LaForce,
K-hazel-virgo is VIIII L'Hermite,
M-vine-libra is VI L'Amoureux,
G-ivy-scorpio is X LaRoue deFortune,
P-whitten-sagittary is VII LeChariot,
and R-elder, the 13th month that encloses no sign (signs being points, not months) and thus is banished to the center in the 12-month zodiacal calendar, is XV LeDiable.
I get the sense that you are using Robert Graves as 'solid ground' in terms of the 'tree calendar'? Perhaps buying into his theory that the Tuatha de Danaan were displaced Greeks and Hebrews? I don't buy it - and even the most fanciful archaeologist might take issue with that one...
 

venicebard

Bat Chicken said:
I get the sense that you are using Robert Graves as 'solid ground' in terms of the 'tree calendar'? Perhaps buying into his theory that the Tuatha de Danaan were displaced Greeks and Hebrews? I don't buy it - and even the most fanciful archaeologist might take issue with that one...
No, the solid ground is what appears when careful logic is applied to the notion there might be ancient kinship between Keltic and Judaic traditions, using what evidence we have of each. (The epigraphic evidence, of which Graves was unaware, is particularly compelling.) Some of 'what is known' is layed out in Graves, along with much speculation . . . and if we must exclude everything that great scholar said just because some of his readers are unable to distinguish what he was presenting as evidence and what as his own fancy, then no, what is deducible -- the larger picture, in other words -- is not for you. But I, for one, will continue, following Isaac Newton (another oft unjustly maligned fellow), to seek and flesh out that prisca sapientia of which man's current knowledge is but a faint echo, for that is where the heart of Hermetic Science pulses, I (I hope) humbly maintain.
 

Bat Chicken

venicebard said:
No, the solid ground is what appears when careful logic is applied to the notion there might be ancient kinship between Keltic and Judaic traditions, using what evidence we have of each. (The epigraphic evidence, of which Graves was unaware, is particularly compelling.) Some of 'what is known' is layed out in Graves, along with much speculation . . . and if we must exclude everything that great scholar said just because some of his readers are unable to distinguish what he was presenting as evidence and what as his own fancy, then no, what is deducible -- the larger picture, in other words -- is not for you. But I, for one, will continue, following Isaac Newton (another oft unjustly maligned fellow), to seek and flesh out that prisca sapientia of which man's current knowledge is but a faint echo, for that is where the heart of Hermetic Science pulses, I (I hope) humbly maintain.
Compelling epigraphic evidence? If you are referring to the Ogham, there is little evidence to substantiate any claim previous to the first century CE. If the contact with the Judaic people was ancient - why does the Ogham only trace back to a time that is post Rome?

I am truly curious to know what your sources are so that I may follow you here. I am not suggesting we toss everything, however, any study of myth as source will be controversial as it is dependent on how metaphors are interpreted and in what context. I agree that it is a good place to start, but not an end in itself. I get the sense you are seeking a 'unifying theory of culture'. (I am also familiar with Fell)

I like the idea that the Ogham was symbols representing an old knowledge. The concept is not only appealing but I would agree that it is 'logical'. I also like the idea that the Ogham was a memory aid. In my talk with friends in the 'shamanic' world, this kind of thing was and is a common practice among people from oral traditions - even today. So again - I struggle to see the Hebrew connection.... are you suggesting that Hebrew was only used for 'mystic writing'? And if so - what's the connection to the Celts? Why go through the Greeks? When does that contact with the Hebrews supposedly take place? We're getting murky again...

I am not saying his theories are outright wrong, but I fail to see any evidence that really supports them. If you have some, please share it. I am not, as you imply, closed minded, but insinuation is not proof or even a theory. If you have something to offer, please do!

I take no issue with Newton or the idea of 'prisca sapientia'. I also agree that some knowledge is only experiential - however - if it is presented as logic - then it must follow through with logic. What I don't see is your evidence of the connection between the Celt and the Judaic traditions. There is no advantage to casting veils on top of veils. Perhaps it's not your ideas that are flawed, but your presentation here is too murky. It's like saying that Egyptians built pyramids and Mayans built pyramids, therefore, the Egyptians must be the same as the Mayans.

Wisdom takes may forms and as we examine cultures from around the world, many may share the same wisdom - but that does not mean that it automatically follows that those cultures are in fact connected by anything more than the SOURCE, God (the Goddess), the Universe, the Akashic field, any level of reality that trance or theoretical physics labors to reveal or whatever belief system you want to apply. In a sense it makes the method less relevant - if you want a unifying theory. We already have it.
 

Debra

I will just say that I consider the distortion and expropriation of Jewish history for purposes totally outside the tradition to be, ah, wrong. I don't "own" my people's history, but it is a FACTUAL history, not an imaginary one, and I've got a stake in it. So yes, facts--real facts, about real people doing real things, no imagined or fantisized or "deduced" people, that's what I want to hear about. Otherwise, you might as well attribute it all to Atlantis and leave my people alone.
 

blackroseivy

Thank you, everyone - I have a lot to think about, & I know where I'm going & where I don't need to go. ;)
 

Bat Chicken

blackroseivy said:
Thank you, everyone - I have a lot to think about, & I know where I'm going & where I don't need to go. ;)
LOL! Sorry for hijacking your thread....!:D
 

blackroseivy

Harhar - most informative though! :D