Tyldwick - Pope


What I notice in the Pope card:

a stone statue of a pope
a golden throne with cherubs and a crown on top
a basilica-like room

That the pope's statue is made of stone speaks to the importance of tradition - "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed." (Galations 1:8). What you get from the Pope is knowledge and doctrine, as well as a sense of belonging (you're a part of the group). But you must "drink the kool-aide" and not question what has been taught. This could apply to more than just religion. I've had professors who held just as tightly to their theories.
Look how close he holds his hand to his chest; most popes when giving a blessing hold their hand high or wide. Not everyone is going to get his blessing; you must fit into his mold first.

The golden throne with the crown on top gives two messages: I have authority/power and the ability to reward (knowledge, belonging, heaven, etc.) or punish.

The basilica-like room is a bit imposing. Its arched ceiling reminds me of the inside of a crown. Catholic Basilicas are pilgrimage sites, implying there is something to honor here. There are no soft cushions or tapestries and no greenery of any kind. It seems to be all metal and stone. For me this speaks of a knowledge that does not grow or adapt to change, and a dogma that is not meant to comfort but challenge you.


Hi! Thank you so much for beginning these study threads. I'll jump in when I have something useful to say.

And for the Pope: My eyes are drawn to the two small windows high up in the dome. They are partially boarded up, some panes open, some closed.

That makes me think that religion (or dogma of any kind) can be either a help or hinderance in letting the light of heaven shine into ones mind or life.

Are the open panes open because of or spite of the imposing, daunting statue in the middle of the room? Am I too in awe of the Pope to try to climb up there and open the others?


Hi Rachelcat, thanks for pointing out the windows! It makes me think of letting in some fresh air. :D I suppose there have always been popes/teachers who were more open-minded than others. Some live in a closed box and others let some light in as you said. I look forward to hearing more of your thoughts about other Tyldwick cards.


Stone vs Gold.

Hi! Thanks so much for participating and creating this threads on the Tyldwick, it has become such an important deck for me and I have a bit of insights myself. Following your first idea of The statue of the pope made of stone vs the cherubs in gold I was thinking about how Chrsitianity started. In the Roman Empire, Christianity started out as an esoteric practice rather than an exoteric religion. And Jesus christ told Peter that He was going to be "the rock of the church" (which was more of a playword) making him the first Pope. So, christianity in the western world started as humble, hidden, secret, underneath the cities. (The stone) To later become a symbol of power and domination (The gold) so my idea is this: Could this represent that spirituality within ourselves starts as humble, secret intimate, something we need to discover and bring to light given the right direction? (or being the pope: the righteous direction) and after doing so feel empowered to show it to the world? Also that while the teachings of men are solid, useful, strong they are not as grand and precious as the light of the divine? (stone vs gold).

I would love any feedback or observations, I am 20 years old looking to gain more experience! Thank you.


Just to mention that the Statue is of the Pope Boniface VIII (Museo dell'Opera del Duomo in Florence) . I will continue reading about this Pope, but I believe the symbolism resides in his authoritative disputes with the King Philip IV of France and Dante Alighieri, showing that his dogmas could surpass the knowledge of the King and the Arts


Here is a photograph of the statue that Seph7989 kindly identified. The statue's left arm is broken off at the elbow. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_...i_cambio,_Bonifacio_VIII_,_1298_circa,_03.JPG

Boniface VIII declared the first Catholic Jubilee year in 1300, a tradition that continues to this day. In his Divine Comedy, Dante condemned him to the Eighth Circle of Hell for simony, the sin of selling church offices. And as Seph mentioned, he did declare that all spiritual and temporal power were under his jurisdiction. Somewhat of a controversial character!

An interesting choice of Pope for this card. I always wonder how deeply the artist intended to read into these historical figures: was the statue chosen to reflect the life of this Pope, or merely intended to represent the concept of a Pope? Either way I enjoy digging into the source material and taking what insights I can find from it.


Thank you!

I'm a little late to the Tyldwick party, but am so grateful for these amazing threads. Thanks so much for the insights and historical associations. I'm just just JUST getting my feet wet in the River Tyldwick, but when I have something to add, I'll be back. For now, my deep appreciation to BodhiSeed and all who have added to the discussions.