Crowley to Margarete Petersen -Eight of Coins : the whole world in a single leaf



  • Prudence
    Working together
    A single leaf can show you the tree to which it belongs. (Belongingness and working together serve eachother).

    It tells about the roots of the tree which from below to above nurture it, just as the leaf, the leaves, nurture the tree with light-food (photosynthesis) from above to below.

    The juice from the womb of the Earth and the Light from the universe nurture the whole system: roots-stem-branches-leaf.

    The leaf tells us about the workings of the Cosmos (Cold, heat, light, dark, and about the Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter).

    It testifies to the interdependence of Plants, Animals and Mankind.

    There is no hierarchy, only an interdepence.

    Through careful observation of one leaf, entire worlds are opened. The leaf is an octave, where the number four limits space, the number 8 brings a cosmic dimension into the works.

I keep drawing this card: Wow! What a card! Crowley calls it "Prudence",
-The Sun in Virgo
-The turn of the tide
-Virgin Earth awaiting the phallic flow
-Intelligence, lovingly applied to material matters.

Margarete Peterson has painted to illustrate this card, a single, but amazingly intricate golden leaf and finds a way to tie these ideas together.

<<Through the careful observation of one leaf, entire worlds are opened.>> -- perhaps this is the kind of prudence that is meant.

Any reactions? Thoughts to share? Add?

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I have thoughts to share! My best friend pulled this card a day or two after conceiving a baby. She and her husband had been having trouble getting pregnant for a few months and she came to me three months in a row to see if they'd been successful "this time". When I saw that card in the "recently come to pass" position I new that the seed had been planted, so to speak. Furthermore, the eight of pentacles reflects the need for patience and careful nurturance. I always think of the saying "you can't pull on flowers to make them grow faster." LoL!


How well expressed, Belladonna: 'the eight of pentacles reflects the need for patience and careful nurturance'... as to prudence, it is worth remembering that it is but another name for wisdom - one may well imagine how a single pearl of wisdom reveals, like the leaf, the whole being through patient observation.

Goethe was certainly another one who said as much in his botanical studies, and considered that each aspect or part of the plant was but leaf metamorphosised (Cf his Die Metamorphose der Pflanze - translated as The Metamorphosis of Plants, a little booklet well worth reading). More than this, Goethe wrote to Herder (1787)
  • 'that in the organ of the plant which we ordinarily designate as leaf, the true Proteus lay hidden, who can conceal and reveal himself in all forms. Forward and backward, the plant is always only leaf, so inseparably united with the future germ that we cannot imagine one without the other.'
It is through such contemplations that Goethe came to see not only the Ürpflanze, but even the Urorganismus... even, to return to the earlier image, as a single pearl may reveal the whole of wisdom through the dark sea of Binah (Binah is translated as either 'understanding'/'Verstand' or 'Intelligence').


Lovely, lovely! I had not fully understood this quote from Goethe at first. It has taken some time to really plant itself in m mind.

It still needs to be nurtured to keep growing in my mind, so I can fully understand it.

This may very likely be the inspiration for Petersen's thoughts on this. (I'll have to ask her...If I ever get the courage to call!!)

Might you say more, jmd about what is the Urorganismus?


The Swedish Witch deck shows an Eve like woman in front of a tree with 8 golden apples on it. One of the apples has reached full ripeness and is falling into her hands. I felt that Angeles Arrien's book "The Tarot Handbook",written for the Thoth deck, reflected this scene beautifully: "The Eight of Disks is prudence, wisdom, or the Harvest Tree. This symbol represents the Harvest Tree that manifests as a result of utilizing prudence and wisdom. The astrological aspect represented on this card is Sun in Virgo. Virgo, the astrological sign, reminds us that harvest can be generated by attending to details, or utilizing our organizational skills. Harvest follows order, it does not follow chaos, and harvest follows trust, it does not follow control. Prudence and wisdom are those qualities of not pushing to make things happen, or resisting or holding back."


I am moving this thread to MP study group.