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The Fool's Journey

From LearnTarot.com

The Fool's Journey is a metaphor for the journey through life. Each major arcana card stands for a stage on that journey - an experience that a person must incorporate to realize his wholeness. These 22 descriptions are based on the keywords for each major arcana card. The keywords are highlighted in the text. A card's number is in parentheses.

The Fool

We begin with the Fool (0), a card of beginnings. The Fool stands for each of us as we begin our journey of life. He is a fool because only a simple soul has the innocent faith to undertake such a journey with all its hazards and pain.

The Fool
At the start of his trip, the Fool is a newborn - fresh, open and spontaneous. The figure on Card 0 has his arms flung wide, and his head held high. He is ready to embrace whatever comes his way, but he is also oblivious to the cliff edge he is about to cross. The Fool is unaware of the hardships he will face as he ventures out to learn the lessons of the world.

The Fool stands somewhat outside the rest of the major arcana. Zero is an unusual number. It rests in the exact middle of the number system - poised between the positive and negative. At birth, the Fool is set in the middle of his own individual universe. He is strangely empty (as is zero), but imbued with a desire to go forth and learn. This undertaking would seem to be folly, but is it?

The Magician and the High Priestess

On setting out, the Fool immediately encounters the Magician (1) and the High Priestess (2) - the great balancing forces that make up the perceived world. It is a feature of the material universe that as soon as we name some aspect of experience, we automatically evoke its opposite.

The Magician is the positive side. He represents the active, masculine power of creative impulse. He is also our conscious awareness. The Magician is the force that allows us to impact the world through a concentration of individual will and power. The High Priestess is the negative side. She is the mysterious unconscious. She provides the fertile ground in which creative events occur. The High Priestess is our unrealized potential waiting for an active principle to bring it to expression.

The terms positive and negative do not imply "good" and "bad." These are human distinctions that do not apply in the tarot. The Magician and the High Priestess are absolutely equal in value and importance. Each is necessary for balance. We may view the negative as our Shadow, but without shadows, we cannot see the light, and without a ground of potential, we cannot create.

C o n t i n u e . . .

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Very much looking forward

I am very much looking forward to more in this series. We did Taro in the 70's but it has been long ago. Thank you.

If I disappear from a discussion please forgive me. My 24-7 business requires me to split mid-sentence to serve them. I am not ducking out, I will be back later to catch up.

Interesting topic.

I studied Tarot many years ago and became quite adept at it. Haven't done a reading in years, though. Sometimes you are better off not knowing something terrible is going to happen to other people you're reading for. I never told them outright. Just gave warning hints or I would just say that I was unable to read the cards at that time, if it was really bad.

The symbolism in the Waite Ryder cards always came through very clearly to me and made learning easy. Now there's an online course, if you're interested: http://www.learntarot.com/rwdesc.htm. Use whatever pack "speaks" to you when you look at the cards. For me, it was the Waite Ryder. Crowley completely creeped me out (I always feel the evil around it when I see it) and most more modern decks seemed too fabricated, devoid of any positive vibrations, for me to make the necessary connection with.

Wonder why this post hasn't been trashed by the Bible Thumpers yet, since they fail to see the great spiritual value in things mystical. Maybe it's because Michael posted it?

Lately it seems we can't have in depth, intelligent conversations about anything that isn't "biblically correct" in their narrow interpretations, according to the King James Version (which God personally dictated to Moses, in the King's English, on Mount Sinai... Sorry, I don't know how to do the purple thing). For a good example of how a post is sabotaged, see my recent post on the secret Fatima letter: http://www.dailypaul.com/299323/frightening-clues-to-the-thi..., which I still think would be of great interest to most of the DP crowd.

“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox

check out this Fool


The amount of symbolism that Crowley packed into this card (as well as all the others) is staggering.

Also, if you want to learn about the Way of the Fool as a spiritual path, some hints are given in this strange book:


“The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants.” — Albert Camus

Michael Nystrom's picture

Looks interesting

I wish I could download books directly into my head.

I wonder if that will be possible one day? Just skip the Kindle - port it into the brain.

No doubt they're working on it. Given enough time - and a stable environment - eventually they could figure it out. The secrets of the universe can all be decoded.

But I think we need to do a better job of understanding that we need to use all of the tools at our disposal, and not discriminate against some.

Human society is a real tricky, finicky thing. Humans are, inherently flawed. Just like everything. Everything is born with its own seeds of destruction. That is why everything is always in flux, forever borning, forever dying.

He's the man.

"There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in."

I always liked that quote by Leonard Cohen. Your comment reminded me of it.

That's an interesting idea, porting books straight into the brain. But is it the destination, or the journey? What is more rewarding, possessing the knowledge, or feeling that understanding dawn as you discover a new perspective? After all, why do we hate spoilers so much?
May be it depends on the book. A book on how to build a greenhouse - port it into my brain. A book on philosophy - let me enjoy each sentence as it unfolds. Although, even reading a greenhouse building book, I can see myself thinking "that's a cool idea!" and enjoying that discovery.

“The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants.” — Albert Camus

I'm of the opinion Crowley is a Negative

A good collection of sources & references can be found at The Alchemy Web Site: http://www.levity.com/alchemy/

Crowley is a mixed bag,

but his Tarot deck is excellent. I am not a big fan of Thelema in general, since it has become more a religion than a mystery school.

The Alchemy Web Site is pretty cool. Adam McLean is a very dedicated guy, though he does not have much lab experience from what I remember. When I was on that path, I was visiting that site daily.

“The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants.” — Albert Camus

Think Positive + and Negative - on a Battery

I like using Pos/Neg references in place of moral or religious overtones.

Michael Nystrom's picture

Good tip

Or Yin and Yang and how they exist together on the YinYang. And how they could never exist independent of each other.

He's the man.

But are the forces ever equal?

Are we at that equilibrium right now?

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Michael Nystrom's picture

We are always in equilibrium

But that equilibrium is dynamic. It is always moving, but always in equilibrium.

Just like the sky: Always changing, always perfect.

Or as the boys from Liverpool put it:

It really doesn't matter if I'm wrong I'm right/where I belong I'm right/where I belong

He's the man.
deacon's picture

where does the power of fear fit in?

it is fed to everyone 24/7,those who feed from it,become weaker,the ones
who fed it to them get stronger
seems more of a pendulum stuck on the fear cycle

If we deny truth before your very eyes,then the rest of what we have to say,is of little consequence

Michael Nystrom's picture

Yeah, its kind of like Monsters, Inc. before their transformatio


They scared the kids to get power. What a metaphor! It is exactly what the media does to us, Scares us to take our power.

But we're not kids. We're adults, and as adults we should realize by now that they can't take it without us giving it. And we can't blame other people. There is only one person we have control over, and that is ourselves. And by taking care of yourself, you give the universe the biggest gift.

There is a conscious campaign of fear being waged against us. It comes from everywhere, like it is just seeming in through the cracks in the wall! How do you combat that? That is a question we all have to answer.

So - how do you stop giving your power away?

I stopped watching TV. I only watch the NFL on Sundays. I also find the commercials during football games particularly amusing.

Beer is advertised a lot, and cars, and phones. And the tablet war between Microsoft and Apple. Microsoft is coming on strong with their fake iPad, but I'll tell you what. Apple, you better be nervous. Microsoft is relentless. They bite, and hold on and dig in until they muscle everyone out.

This ad. Wow. The last line in this ad cuts right to the bone:


[What the hell is wrong with Apple? Can you make the iPhone bigger? Like the Galaxy? How about turn the mini into a phone? Do something daring. Everything is so damn safe and conservative now that Steve is gone.]

And I saw this commercial while watching the NFL.

Commercials are interesting cultural phenomena

He's the man.
deacon's picture

and that,my friend

is what i was talking about
fear,as pointed out below is an effective tool
fear keeps people from seeing the big picture.
I remember being told (when the siren sounds,hide under the desk !)
i also remember feeling stupid for doing so
Most on this planet feed from the trough of fear,fed to the masses
through every conceivable manner,it is the greatest tool ever invented
and most buy into it
Your yin and yang seems a bit odd,seeing it looks equal,if everything remains equal,then nothing can get done,equal love to equal hate
equal fear to equally being not
I see it as more of an energy,and it can be manipulated,it has for as long as i can remember,so it can be swung back to where the good things
are drawn from instead of the bad
Now,one would think with the governments.msm's low approval ratings,that people would see,or at least look into the lies they have been told,and maybe,just maybe realize they are the biggest culprits,then question what they have been fed
as for me,i never really had that problem,never watched/read the news,and never learned a thing in school(it bored me),so i was more of an empty canvass waiting for the complete picture to develop

If we deny truth before your very eyes,then the rest of what we have to say,is of little consequence

Fear, Doubt, and Superstition...

Powerful marketing tools.

deacon's picture

totally agree

and thank you
These tools are used on the masses to keep them confused.It can lead
to stress and stress can lead to death
The one using these techniques know what they are doing and why.
But what really gets me is this,when these facts are pointed out to some of them,instead of getting mad at the ones doing it to them,they take it out on
the messenger,and most do not get past that
Fear keeps people from looking into why they have gotten that way.
Fear keeps some looking within instead of without.

If we deny truth before your very eyes,then the rest of what we have to say,is of little consequence