06 The Feeling LOVERS

The opposite of love is power … not hatred.

– Carl Jung


The feeling LOVERS & the conquering CHARIOT

In this post, the Feeling LOVERS arcanum (6) is associated with the power of love. In the next post, the Conquering CHARIOT arcanum (7) will be associated with the love of power.

Lunar cycle and the unconscious arcana

In the post about Yin-Yang, Lunar Cycle and Solar Cycle, we defined the ten-major arcana lunar (unconscious) set (1 to 10) and within it the first five-arcana (1 to 5) subset (yang, incarnation). They were
(1) The Initiating MAGICIAN
(2) The Incubating HIGH PRIESTESS
(3) The Seducing EMPRESS
(4) The Commanding EMPEROR
(5) The Mediating HIGH PRIEST
The latter (5) synthesizes the four previous arcana (1 to 4) and prepares for the second five-arcana (6 to 10) subset (yin, perception) starting with the Feeling LOVERS arcanum (6, this post) and the Conquering CHARIOT arcanum (7, the next post).

900x600-cupidMythologically associated with the High Priest (arcana 5), the Centaur’s bow was aiming to the sky and the arrow was linking earth to heaven. With the Lovers (this arcana 6), it is now the opposite. Cupid’s bow is aiming from the sky and the arrow is linking heaven to the earth.

The Lovers arcana and Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”

Before detailing the “Lovers” symbols in the four previously selected tarot decks, let’s look at its arcanum position in the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. While we selected the Tarot de Marseille (TDM) arcana, the structure works for almost all tarot decks major arcana.


The Lovers represents the link between the Moon (dreams and reflections) and the Heart (love and beauty). The Moon gives the Lovers their unconscious attraction and the Heart their longing to the original celestial unity. Let’s note that the Lovers (6) share the central Heart with the High Priestess (3) and the High Priest (5).

Let’s now observe the four different Lovers arcana.

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)

The TDM Lovers is the first arcanum to show more than one actual persons, with not two but four characters: (1) a young man (inexperience) who is solicited by (2) an older woman (experience) and (3) a younger woman (innocence) (all three terrestrial) while pointed at by an arrow (link sky-earth) aimed by (4) an angelic (celestial) Cupid (love messenger). What is the relationship between them? A young man seeking his mother’s blessing to marry the young woman? A young woman asking her mother to marry the young man? Is there harmony or disagreement between them? Are the three in the middle of a conflict? Is the young woman pregnant? Are they involved in a trio or any other projection? Regardless of their relationships, it looks like being in the middle and aimed by Cupid, the young man is the one who must make a choice.

(1) Cupid is the middle of a white (purity) circle with red (life) and yellow (spiritual) rays (warm cosmic love), (2) all four have yellow hair (spiritual antennas), (3) the younger woman has flowers (nature heart) in her hair while the older wears a laurel crown (winner), (4) the older woman, the young woman and Cupid have some blue sky (celestial divinity) parts while the young man doesn’t have any yet (spiritual immaturity), (5) the older woman has her left (receptivity) hand on his shoulder (authority, protection) and her right (activity) hand index finger directed towards the ground (reason), (6) the young woman has her right (activity) hand on his heart (love), (7) while, not immediately clear, the hand on her belly (baby) belongs to his left (receptivity) hand (shape + identical left and right blue-yellow forearms.)

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM Lovers needs to transform conflicts to peace.

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)

In the RWS Lovers arcana, there are no longer four characters but three: a man (Adam), a woman (Eve) and an overwhelming angel (messenger of God). (1) Irradiated by the huge solar light (divine emanation), (2) the angel (unconscious love feelings) is blessing the couple, (3) with open arms (preaching for their union). (4) In the Garden of Eden, Eve is standing next to the apple tree (knowledge of good and evil), (5) swirled by the serpent (receptive Eve seducer), and (6) Adam is standing next to a tree with leaves of fire (male active principle). (7) Both Adam and Eve are naked (innocence) with both arms wide open down (vulnerability). (8) In her right hand Eve holds an apple (forbidden fruit) and (9) looks at the angel (imploring for its blessing). (10) Adam looks at Eve (ready for her decision). (11) The clouds are darkening the sky (announcing bad news). (12) The lovers will eat the apple and be expelled from heaven (end of their easy life). (13) The garden ground and the mountain are unexpectedly bare (lost Paradise). (14) From there on, the couple and all its successors will have to live with terrestrial hardships.

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS Lovers needs to follow their hearts wisdom.

Mythic Tarot (MT)

This Greek mythology scene shows a beauty contest between the Olympus three most beautiful goddesses: older Hera (goddess of all gods), seductive Aphrodite (goddess of love and sex) and serious Athena (goddess of justice). The contest imposed by Zeus is to be judged (against his will) by young womanizer Prince Paris (son of King Priam of Troy), who will award the winner with the golden apple. The MT arcana shows the following details. To influence his decision, each goddess is promising Paris a different power (bribery): (1) Hera holding an earth globe (world authority) in her left hand (receptive), (2) Aphrodite a golden cup (physical love) with both hands (receptive and active), and (3) Athena a sword (cutting-edge mental abilities) with her left hand (receptive). (4) In his left hand (receptive) Paris holds the golden apple (winner prize) and in his right (active) hand a shepherd staff (primary instinct). (5) The landscape has green fields and mountains (fertile nature), and (6) the sky is blue (love is in the air).

Not ready for a mature choice and listening to his youth sexual impulses, Paris doesn’t think twice and choose Aphrodite as the winner.

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT Lovers needs to listen to their instincts.

More about  “Paris Judgment”

Peter-Paul Rubens - Judgment of Paris
Peter-Paul Rubens – Judgment of Paris

In agreement with her promise, Aphrodite offered Helen of Sparta to Paris. The good news was that she was considered as the world most beautiful woman. The bad news was that she was already married to Greek king Menelaus. Accepting Aphrodite’s gift, Paris awarded her with the golden apple. The two runner ups, Hera and Athena, didn’t hold Paris choice against him, but secretly rejoiced at plotting Troy downfall. The Greeks’ expedition to retrieve Helen from Paris in Troy is the Trojan War mythological basis.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)

375x600-lovers-symbolonThe ST arcana, titled “Eros”, shows three characters: a naked couple holding hands in a physical communion. Their connection is blessed by a little Cupid aiming at them with a bow. The man and the woman are gazing at each other with pure love in their look. An arch (glory) with purple (spirituality) flowers (natural beauty), red and yellow pillows (life and spiritual pleasures), fruits (nature sweet gifts), wine (divine beverage) and lush vegetation (nature gift to the union) symbolize a sensual union harmony. The sky is blue. Physical love is in the air and nature is giving its utmost blessing.

To reach a higher awareness level, the ST Lovers needs to acknowledge their sensuality.

In a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the Lovers needs to (1) transform conflicts to peace, (2) follow their hearts wisdom, (3) listen to their instincts and (4) acknowledge their sensuality.

As a practical simple advice, your inner Lovers recommends that you follow your instincts with your soulmate.

Click on 2 for the LOVERS Practical Exercises

05 The Mediating HIGH PRIEST

600x600-alejandro-jodorowskyLet the inner god that is in each one of us speak. The temple is your body, and the priest is your heart: it is from here that every awareness must begin.
– Alejandro Jodorowsky


980x1200-yin-yang-tarot-lunarThe High Priest arcanum wraps up the first of four major arcana subsets (lunar-yang, incarnation). In the post about Yin-Yang, Lunar Cycle and Solar Cycle, we defined the ten-major arcana lunar (unconscious) set (1 to 10) and the first five-arcana (1 to 5) subset (yang, incarnation). They are (1) The Initiating MAGICIAN, (2) The Incubating HIGH PRIESTESS, (3) The Seducing EMPRESS, (4) The Commanding EMPEROR and (5) The Mediating HIGH PRIEST (this post). The High Priest synthesizes the four previous arcana (1 to 4) and prepares for the second five-arcana (6 to 10) subset (lunar-yin, perception).

1024x1024-centaurWith hoofs in the ground and a bow aiming towards the sky, there is no better myth than the half human half horse Centaur to symbolize the High Priest role. The arrow is the link connecting terrestrial humans to celestial divinities. As will be described further, astrological Sagittarius (Centaur) and mythological Chiron (the eldest Centaur) are associated with the High Priest symbolism. The highest religious authority has received different arcana names: Pope, Hierophant, Preacher and High Priest. Since we are analyzing four separate tarot decks, we will use “HIGH PRIEST” that embrace all four designations. The High Priest role is the same in all cases, it is to receive divine wisdom and give it to humans. The High Priest acts as a mediator between the material earth and the spiritual sky. This is why Astro Tarology named him the “Mediating HIGH PRIEST”.

The High Priest arcana and Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”

Before detailing the High Priest symbols in the four previously selected tarot decks, let’s look at the Fool (#0), the Magician (#1), the High Priestess (#2), the Empress (#3), the Emperor (#4) and the High Priest (#5) positions in the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. That structure works for almost all tarot decks major arcana. We selected the Tarot de Marseille (TDM) where the Traveling Fool is called “Le Mat”,  the Initiating Magician “Le Bateleur”, the Incubating High Priestess “La Papesse”, the Seducing Empress “L’Impératrice”, the Commanding Emperor “L’Empereur” and the Mediating High Priest “Le Pape”. All six can be seen in the following image bottom.


The High Priest represents the link between Jupiter (abundance and success) and the Heart (love and beauty). Jupiter gives the High Priest his leading authority and the Heart his divine love. Let’s note that the High Priest shares the central Heart with the High Priestess.

Let’s now observe the four different High Priest arcana.

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)

320x600-the-hight-priest-jodoThe TDM High Priest (“Le Pape” – The Pope) sits on a throne (high authority) whose back is like a ladder between two columns of blue sky color (moving up to and down from spiritual heights), held together by a red (life) connector (bridging physical life and spirit). The ladder works in both directions: from above to below (the High Priest receives the celestial divine message) and from the earth to the sky (the High Priest gives the divine message to earthy followers). On the bottom, we see two disciples with red (life) tonsures (religious), dressed with partly sky blue robes (already on some spiritual level) listening to the master teachings (his right hand two joint fingers indicate unity and blessing).

(1) In his left (receptive) blue sky (spiritual) hand he hold a gold (authority) vertical (up and down) crozier with a triple cross (holy trinity), (2) Both his flesh color (human life) right (active) hand and his sky blue (spiritual) left (receptive) hand are showing a Templar cross (equal branch length = union of horizontal matter and vertical spirit), (3) His yellow-orange-red (life intelligence) four-tier (physical, emotional, creative and intellectual worlds) tiara (spiritual crown) ends with a small orange circle (top spirituality) on the card’s edge (at the visible world’s end), (4) His white hair (purity) have red (life) barrettes (bridges), (5) His beard (wisdom) is white (purity) and sky blue (spirituality), (6) The yellow (intelligence) edges of his red (life) cape are held together with an orange (intellectual) and green (existential) circular (eternal) clip (unity).

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM High Priest needs to bridge material and spiritual worlds.

The High Priest and High Priestess couple

Each arcana is a letter of the tarot alphabet. By combining two letters we will get a syllable. Let’s now look at the couple High Priest and High Priestess.


Unlike the Empress and the Emperor facing each other in the natural sequence (III-IIII), the High Priestess and the High Priest are now back to back (II-V). The Empress needs the Emperor to ground her idealism and the Emperor needs the Empress to loosen up his realism. Both the High Priestess and the High Priest are equally pure hearts with a powerful sense of devotion to others. The High Priestess (receptive) incubates the spiritual knowledge for the High Priest (active) to transmit it to the world. Their missions are to serve others and the last thing they should have is an individual attraction to each other that would deviate their energy from their natural life missions.

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)

360x600-the-hight-priest-waite(1) Like the TDM High Priest, the RWS High Priest (“The Hierophant”) sits on a throne (high authority), (2) With a triple cross (holy trinity) crozier in his left (receptive) hand, (3) And his right (active) hand showing two joint fingers (blessing, unity), (4) The RWS High Priest blessing right hand is at his head level (intelligence of the head) while for the TDM High Priest it is at the heart level (intelligence of the heart), (5) The RWS High Priest wears a three-layer (holy trinity) papal tiara (spiritual crown) on his head, (6) The two columns are now massive (tangible) pillars (paralleling the RWS High Priestess two pillars) and growing outside the arcana (link earth-sky), (7) The two tonsured disciples wear differentiated flowery robes: the left includes red roses (love) and the right white lilies (purity), (8) The RWS High Priest wears a red cloak (life, energy, action) with white borders (virginity), (9) Showing three crosses (holy trinity), (10) He wears white shoes (pure standing) also with crosses (Christianity), (11) His feet stand on a red carpet (material life) on which lie two crossed golden keys (spiritual unity of opposites: earth-sky, matter-spirit, known-unknown).

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS High Priest needs to mediate opposites such as known and unknown.

Mythic Tarot (MT)

357x600-the-hight-priest-mythicRepresented by Chiron, the Greek mythology Centaurs leader, the MT High Priest arcana differs completely from the previous TDM and RWS papal association. We now see a mythic half horse (matter) half human (spirit) united in one creature (unity earth and heaven). Chiron mediation between matter and spirit, though, coincides with the TDM and RWS High Priest teaching message.

The MT arcana shows the following details. (1) Chiron lives in a dark cave (material home) with light coming from the roof (spiritual temple), (2) In his left (receptive) hand he holds a paper scroll (divine laws), (3) And his right (active) hand shows his index and pinky fingers up (ancient blessing sign, when also raising the thumb up the three fingers would mean “I love you” is sign language), (4) The cave (temple) entrance is made of two natural rocky (not man-made) pillars (knowledge), (5) Chiron has a beard (wisdom teacher) and wears a crown (supreme ruler) over his head.

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT High Priest needs to be seriously committed to seek the meaning of life.

More about Chiron in Greek mythology

1200x1200-centaurusChiron was born from the sun (King Ixion, Ares son) and a raincloud, which Zeus created to look like his wife Hera (thus preventing Ixion to sleep directly with the Goddess). Unlike the other Centaurs, Chiron was intelligent and peaceful, as he was taught by Apollo and Artemis in his younger years. Chiron was a teacher, priest and healer. One day, his friend Heracles wounded him accidentally with a poisonous arrow from which he could never heal himself. Then, immortal Chiron continued to live in pain, renouncing to worldly enjoyments and dedicating his time to spiritual teaching. To put an end to his endless suffering, Zeus mercifully let Chiron die and gave him a place among the stars known as the Centaurus Constellation.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)

374x600-the-hight-priest-symbolonVery rare in human nature, the ST High Priest card image is totally symmetrical (accessing priesthood perfection requires discipline). He is a non-denominational preacher. His two hands are up (blessing a congregation, linking material earth and spiritual sky), and has a big cross (Christianity) on his heart (love), two seven-branch menorahs (sacred candelabrum used in the Temple of Jerusalem) fronting two stars of David (symbol associated with the Jewish people) on the altar cover (Judaism) and a circle-centered stain-glass Buddha (Buddhism, wisdom) over his head. The two pillars (knowledge) are now inside the temple and hold an ogival vault (religious architectural support).

In the top corner, we see the astrological sign of Sagittarius (symbolized by the Centaur myth uniting earth and heaven), its glyph as an upwards arrow (link between matter and spirit) and its ruling planet Jupiter (abundance and success) in the bottom corner.

Chiron is also the name of a comet orbiting between Jupiter and Uranus. It symbolizes the wounded healer and teacher. Astrologically, Chiron position would indicate where our healing powers are, more specifically those resulting from our spiritual wounds.


To reach a higher awareness level, the ST High Priest needs to be the inner therapist searching the soul with an open heart.


In a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the High Priest needs to (1) bridge material and spiritual worlds, (2) mediate opposites such as known and unknown, (3) be seriously committed to seek the meaning of life and (4) be the inner therapist searching the soul with an open heart.

As a practical simple advice, your inner High Priest recommends that you mediate the material and the spiritual.


Click on 2 for the HIGH PRIEST Practical Exercises

04 The Commanding EMPEROR


If I had to choose a religion, the sun as the universal giver of life would be my god.
– Napoleon Bonaparte


800x1200-napoleon-bonaparte-crowningIn 1804, Napoleon crowned himself Emperor of the French by grabbing the crown out of the Pope’s hands, signifying his power over the Catholic Church. Soon after, he crowned his wife Josephine as Empress as well.

The Emperor archetype is always associated with a strong ego. As we will see further, the Emperor is marked by the zodiac sign of Leo (the lion is the animals king) of which the Sun is the ruler. For Napoleon Bonaparte, whose sun sign is Leo (he was born on August 15, 1769), the Sun is above all humans and religions. His quote above says it all about the Emperor archetype.

While showing little resemblance with Napoleon himself, Ingres painting above shows his crowning with abundant imperial symbols. (1) The Emperor is seated in a sumptuous, elevated, wide throne (stable and maximum power), (2) Of which each armrest ends with an ivory (purity) ball (courage, “to have the balls”), (3) He holds Charles V (Emperor) scepter (regal authority) with his right (active) hand, (4) And the hand of justice (legal power, code Napoleon) with his left (receptive) hand, (5) Charlemagne (Emperor) coronation sword (warrior, conquests) stands on his left side, (6) A laurel wreath (Caesar Emperor) covers his head, (7) He wears the great collar of the “Legion d’Honneur” (highest French merit award), (8) Over an ermine hood (royal attribute), (9) He wears a gold-embroidered satin tunic and an ermine-lined purple velvet cloak decorated with gold bees (kings pageantry), (10) He also wears white (purity) shoes (materiality) embroidered in gold (royal color) resting on a cushion (comfortable connection with the material world), (11) The carpet under the throne displays a huge imperial eagle (the birds king) (12) And some zodiac signs (cosmic power).

The Emperor arcana and Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”

Before detailing the Emperor symbols in the four previously selected tarot decks, let’s look at the Fool (#0), the Magician (#1), the High Priestess (#2), the Empress (#3) and the Emperor positions in the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. That structure works for almost all tarot decks major arcana. We selected the Tarot de Marseille (TDM) where the Traveling Fool is called “Le Mat”,  the Initiating Magician “Le Bateleur”, the Incubating High Priestess “La Papesse”, the Seducing Empress “L’Impératrice” and the Commanding Emperor “L’Empereur”. All five can be seen at the image bottom.


The Emperor represents the link between Jupiter (abundance and success) and the Moon (imaginary world). Jupiter gives the Emperor his imperial aura and the Moon the illusion of invincibility.

Let’s now observe the four different Emperor arcana

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)

320x660-emperor-jodoUnlike the static Napoleon comfortably seated on his overwhelmingly consecrated authority, the TDM Emperor has a more dynamic demeanor. He is half seated (established authority) half standing (ready to move), seen side-on (not seeking any viewer’s ego validation, self-confidence, like the kings in a standard playing deck of cards) holding firmly (determination) his scepter (ready to act) with his right (active) hand in the air (no need for body support, secured strength). His seat is more an armchair than a throne (ready for grounded activities). The TDM Emperor represents a powerful father figure, that in some cases could be associated with a deity.

(1) The Emperor is marked by the number four (IIII), which in numerology symbolizes stability (like a table four legs), (2) Attached to his yellow (gold) laurel necklace (winner), the yellow oval pendant (his own ruled world) is divided in four quadrants (the four life functions: material, emotional, creative and intellectual) meaning that he is in full authority of his own universe, (3) The number four appears also in the square shape (material grounding) between his legs, (4) His head is crowned with a yellow helmet (intelligence) bordered with red (life) triangles (sun rays) and surmounted by a compass (the four cardinal directions, stability, order), (5) A red curvy shape (life flow) links his yellow helmet (intellectual knowledge) with his sky blue hair and beard (spiritual wisdom), (6) His left (receptive) hand is smaller than his right (active).

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM Emperor needs to be ready to act in the world with strength, authority and self-confidence.

Empresses are from Venus and Emperors are from Mars

Each arcana is a letter of the tarot alphabet. By combining two letters we will get a syllable. Let’s illustrate with the couple Empress – Emperor.


(1) While the TDM Empress holds her scepter leaning on her pubis with her left (receptive) hand, the TDM Emperor holds his in the air with his right (active) hand, (2) The cross at her scepter’s end is orange (intellectual) while his is red (life), (3) While the eagle in her shield is unfinished (see its right wing), his eagle is completed, (4) His eagle sits on a  white egg indicating that it is a female (the small receptive yin part in a strongly active yang personality = Jung anima) and her Adam’s apple symbolizes the reverse (a male eagle = small yang part in a strongly yin personality = Jung animus). More about Astro Tarology and Yin-Yang.

In the above sequence III-IIII (as opposed to IIII-III), the couple looks at each other offering them a greater completeness. While the Empress without Emperor would be very active and idealist, the Emperor without Empress would become too realist and might lack actions. Combining her receptivity (yin, Venus) and his activity (yang, Mars) will complement each other and help them reach a higher level of united consciousness.

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)

350x600-emperor-waiteSitting on a square (four) stone (stability) throne, the RWS Emperor is also a symbol of the father archetype. His beard shows his mature wisdom while the armor (strength) under his red  (life, energy, action) robe indicates his physical vitality ready to fight to protect his realm. Astrologically, the Emperor in his palace is marked by the glorious sign of Leo (ruled by the Sun), but when he is outside battling the warrior is marked by the sign of Aries (ruled by planet Mars, the Roman god of war = Greek Ares). The RWS Emperor arcanum shows four (again) ram’s heads (like Khnum an aspect of Ra, the Egyptian Sun god).

(1) In his right (active and giving) hand, the RWS Emperor holds a solid yellow (gold power) Ankh scepter (Egyptian symbol of virility), (2) And in his left (receptive and receiving) hand a golden apple (feminine goodness), (3) His multi-faceted crown (power) is associated with self-reliance and higher self, (4) The rocky mountainous background symbolizes security, (5) His throne is higher than the mountains (domination), (6) A small river in the bottom indicates that there is life and room for growth under his leadership and (7) the sky is color orange and yellow (fire and spiritual quest).

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS Emperor needs to be a leader who provides his realm with protection, stability and security.

Mythic Tarot (MT)

358x600-emperor-mythicThe MT Emperor is associated with no other than Zeus, the Greek god of all gods and humans. Zeus was born from Titans Rhea and Cronos. After a prophet had told Cronos that one of his children would overthrown him, he decided to kill all his offsprings at birth. And so he did by swallowing the first five children. When she was bearing her sixth child, Rhea fled secretly to a cave and gave birth to Zeus. She then tricked Cronos by wrapping a stone in lieu of the baby, which he swallowed like the others. Zeus now a grownup tricked his father to drink a sickening potion which made him throw up the five unharmed children and the stone. Zeus then lead his siblings to overthrow Cronos, fulfilling the initial prophecy and establishing his unconditional power on Mount Olympus.


(1) The MT Emperor sits on and fills a squared (stable number four) golden throne (regal) on the top of a mountain (material and spiritual heights), (2) The background shows snow-topped mountains (aloneness at the top) emerging above a soft blue (light of the day) sky itself over a navy blue (darkness of the night) sky, (3) His right (active) hand holds thunderbolts (power, sudden light, vision), (4) And his left (receptive) hand a world globe (imperial ruling), (5) An eagle stands on his left (receptive) shoulder (neck level = link between physical body and intellectual head) looks to the right (future). Because it can fly higher than all other birds and is the only animal able to look at the sun, the eagle rules the flying birds (air) as the lion the mammals (earth). Both are emblems of ultimate leadership.

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT Emperor needs to embody the father figure of legal, moral, ethical and spiritual integrity.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)


(1) The ST Emperor sits on a stable square-shaped (number four) gold throne (regal), (2) In front of a huge sun (power, ideal, ego), (3) backed by a yellow sky (consciousness). (4) His right (active) hand holds a golden scepter (regal power), (5) And his left (receptive) hand holds a blue sphere (sky) with golden ornaments (spirituality) surmounted by a cross (deity), (6) He receives his power from above (sky, left hand) and gives the benefits to below (earth, right hand), (7) The arcanum left side (past) shows a community living in tents (transient and temporary homes), the right (future) is showing a solidly build village (stable and permanent homes), (8) The throne legs (stability) are made of sphinx-like faces (Egyptian sphinx is a solar symbol, body = lion, strength, protection), (9) A red and orange (solar fire) carpet leads to the elevated throne (superpower).

In the corners we see the astrological symbols of the Leo (king, sex, ego) zodiac sign and its ruling Sun (power, creativity, ideal). Those celestial analogies appeared all along from Napoleon to each of the four tarot Emperor arcanum.

To reach a higher awareness level, the ST Emperor needs to express his identity and live his own life regardless of others’ opinion.


In a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the Emperor needs to (1) be ready to act in the world with strength, authority and self-confidence, (2) be a leader who provides his realm with protection, stability and security, (3) embody the father figure of legal, moral, ethical and spiritual integrity and (4) express his identity and live his own life regardless of others’ opinion.

As a practical simple advice, your inner Emperor recommends that you show strength and integrity in your commanding leadership.



Click on 2 for the EMPEROR Practical Exercises

03 The Seducing EMPRESS

330x330-george-bernard-shawWhen I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.
– George Bernard Shaw


570x713-empress-emily-balivetThe knowledge acquired from the High Priestess is now brought to life by the Empress. Like a newborn, she is full of vital energy ready to be converted into actions. She is impatient to implement her new limitless source of enthusiasm but she has no experience yet. Now is the time for her to develop her innate charm abilities, gain confidence in her strength and consolidate her seduction power.

The above Empress rendering was designed by Emily Balivet, an amazingly talented symbolic painter. We will see further below some symbolic similarity with the Symbolon Empress arcanum.

983x619-birth-of-venusEmily´s Empress emerging nakedness and long red hair reminds Sandro Botticelli “Birth of Venus”. Birth, love and beauty are exactly what the Empress symbols are all about. In her painting, Emily represented the Empress naked (newborn pure innocence) but partially covered (minimal decency protection) with a red (life) shawl draped loosely (freedom) around her body. She holds a scepter (regal power) with her left (receptive) hand and wears a floating (emergence) starry diadem (cosmic power) over her head (intellectual and spiritual abilities). She sits on solid rock (stability) with her right (active) foot touching the water (feelings) of a flowing river (real life). The decor is made of abundant vegetation and palatial ornaments (wealthy empire). With the next arcanum we will meet her consort the Emperor.

The tarot arcana and the Chinese five elements

The following design shows that there is a perfect sequential match between the first 5 tarot arcana and the Chinese 5 elements.


(1) The Magician = beginning = mercury = METAL = Fall (to plant)
(2) The High Priestess = seed gestation = WATER = Winter (to germinate)
(3) The Empress = newborn burst to life = WOOD = Spring (to emerge)
(4) The Emperor = sun at high noon = FIRE = Summer (to crop)
(5) The High Priest = material spirit = EARTH = Indian Summer (to wrap up)

The tarot arcana and Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”

Before detailing the Empress symbols in the four previously selected tarot decks, let’s look at the Fool (#0), the Magician (#1), the High Priestess (#2) and the Empress (#3) positions in the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. That structure works for almost all tarot decks major arcana. We selected the Tarot de Marseille (TDM) where the Fool is called “Le Mat”,  the Magician “Le Bateleur”, the High Priestess “La Papesse” and the Empress “L’Impératrice” (this is the first arcanum with the similar wording in English and French). All four can be seen at the image bottom.


 The Empress represents the link between Venus (love and beauty) and Jupiter (abundance and success). Venus gives the Empress her seductive power and Jupiter her imperial aura.

Let’s now observe the four different Empress arcana

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)

320x600-empress-jodoThe seed planted with the Magician germinated with the High Priestess is now hatching with the Empress. It’s springtime now and the young shoot is exploding to life. The TDM Empress is like an inexperienced teenager with plentiful life energy ready to change the world. Looking at the TDM Empress symbols, we see (1) a young (newly born) woman sitting firmly (stability) on a throne (power), (2) holding a scepter (high power) in her left (receptive) hand and (3) a shield (nobility) in her right (active) hand, (4) the shield represents a yellow (intellectual) unfinished eagle (imperial power in progress), (5) she wears an ornate orange, yellow and red tiara (rich life and mental power), (6) the throne back is sky blue (divine power), there is a white (pure and virgin) snake (sexuality) on the floor (material), (7) the floor is tiled (palace) with a green plant (nature), (8) under her left elbow is a baptism jar (purification).

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM Empress needs to experience her seduction power and build self-confidence.

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)

350x600-empress-waiteThe outdoor RWS Empress symbolism is of a higher level than that of the indoor TDM Empress. All in her and in her surrounding evokes nature abundance and fertility. She is Mother Earth, Mother nature, radiating from earth center. Let’s explore the arcanum symbols in detail. (1) Her heart shape (love on earth) shield (authority) on her side (more universal, she is not holding the shield like in the TDM Empress) is marked by the Venus glyph (Roman goddess of universal love and relationship = Greek Aphrodite) with a yellow-filled circle (solar light beauty) over a cross (earthy incarnation), (2) A field of ripe corn (abundant fertility) is growing at her feet (material world), (3) Luxuriant trees (wealth of foliage = abundance) are in the background, (4) Through the trees, a river meanders (flow of life) to a cascade of endless water falling (renewal) into a pond (life pool) at her legs level (fertility), (5) Abundant pomegranate fruits (Persephone seasonal death and rebirth) ornate her dress (Empress = Demeter as seen below in MT = Mother nature = mother of Persephone the High Priestess), (6) She sits on a red (life) casual seat (she is outside) made of a set of cushion and bolster (material comfort), (7) Her legs are open (like the TDM Empress she may be pregnant of a new life = fertility, femininity, sexuality), (8) In her right (active) hand she holds a short scepter (ruling earth) at her head level (spiritual), (9) A laurel wreath (peace) covers her hair, (10) She wears a 12-star (the 12 tribes of Israel or the 12 zodiac signs) diadem (high power) over her head (spiritual), (11) her neck is covered with a 7-pearl (7 planets visible with the naked eye = septenary) necklace (separating the spiritual head from the material body), (12) The sky is yellow (intellectual-spiritual consciousness).

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS Empress needs to be inspired by nature abundance of love, beauty and fertility.

Mythic Tarot (MT)

356x600-empress-mythicWhile in the above TDM and RWS arcana, uncertainty remains about the Empress pregnancy, in the MT arcanum there is no more doubt. All three, though, are perfect symbols of fertility. The Empress symbolizes motherhood and is associated with Demeter, Mother Earth of the Greek mythology. As in the RWS Empress, the MT Empress shares rich fields and a flowing river as symbols of abundant nature. However, the riverside trees are now shorter and the mountains are treeless. This duality evokes the seasons alternations associated with Demeter’s daughter Persephone (the High Priestess).

Spiritually blessed by heaven, Demeter was the Greek goddess of the harvest, grain and fertility. She also presided over seasonal nature cycles of life, death and rebirth resulting from her daughter Persephone yearly returns from the underground to earth with each new Spring. As the earth mother, Demeter also brought agriculture to mankind, more specifically the cereals. She also taught women how to make the bread from the grains. Before anything else, the MT Empress represents the Mother Earth experience.

Here are the arcanum details. (1) Earthy Demeter is surrounded by a rich wheat field with red flowers and in her left arm she carries a wheat sheaf (ruling over nature and production of vegetation, fruits, food), (2) Her dress is richly covered with flowers and leaves (Mother Earth), (3) She wears a 12-stone necklace (the 12 zodiac signs correlating cosmic laws with the seasons cycles), (4) Her abundant brown (the earth color) floating hair (free open receptivity) is covered with a crown (ruler) shaped with castles (home peace, safety and security), (5) A river flows from the mountains valley (life fertility) to an elongated body of water (reunited water parts associated with family love, relationships, unions, marriages and children), (6) Treeless mountains are agricultural fields (nature attribute), (7) the sky is blue (sweet Spring time) with some clouds (a reminder of Persephone abduction).

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT Empress needs to connect with nature and enjoy its simple pleasures.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)

372x600-empress-symbolonThe ST Empress is associated with the Lover archetype. The ST arcana looks like a symbolic composite of the previous ones. Like Mother Earth in the MT, the ST arcana shows an abundance of trees, flowers and fruits. Like the RSW and MT, the ST Empress is set outside closer to nature values. Like in the TDM and Emily’s painting, the ST Empress evokes the power of seduction.

With one breast exposed, a more voluptuous demeanor, a semi-transparent shawl and her right foot touching loosely the pool water, the ST Empress expresses her sexual power of seduction. The fruits basket and the jar of wine evoke earthy pleasure. A dove flying in a blue sky represents peace in this Garden of Eden. Crown and diadems are gone and replaced by flowers. The power of love is ruling all over. She looks at herself in a mirror which indicates that she needs self-confidence validation in her newly discovered seduction power.

In the corners, the astrologic symbols indicate the zodiac earth sign of Taurus and its ruling Venus the planet of love and beauty. There are 12 zodiac signs and four elements (fire, earth, air and water). Each element is thus present in three zodiac signs. In this case, let’s look at the triplicity of the element earth. While all three are denominated “earth”, their materiality is different. There is the Capricorn mountain rock, the Virgo beach sand and the Taurus fertile soil. In total symbiosis, Mother Earth and the Taurus zodiac sign are sharing nature, agriculture and fertility symbols.

To reach a higher awareness level, the ST Empress needs to enjoy the power of seduction, love and beauty in earthy pleasures.

1450x700-the-empress-four-arcanaIn a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the Empress needs to (1) experience her seduction power and build self-confidence, (2) be inspired by nature abundance of love, beauty and fertility, (3) connect with nature and enjoy its simple pleasures and (4) enjoy the power of seduction, love and beauty in earthy pleasures.

As a practical simple advice, your inner Empress recommends that you manifest freely your natural power of seduction with love and beauty.

The mother and the lover archetypes

Adam had a wife before Eve. Her name was Lilith


Below is a description of the earthy Taurus psychological meanings.


Click on 2 for the EMPRESS Practical Exercises

01 The Initiating MAGICIAN


It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.
– Walt Disney


For Mickey Mouse –the Apprentice Sorcerer in Disney Fantasia– as well as for the Initiating Magician everything is possible.

600x400-fantasiaThe Magician is actually the first arcana of the tarot deck, the first step in the initiation journey. The Fool was in fact the arcana zero who, like the familiar Joker, can travel anywhere at any time to enhance any other card. In Fantasia, when Mickey the apprentice Magician loses control of his new magical powers, the Master Sorcerer (the Fool) comes to his rescue.

The image above shows the symbols of the four elements/life powers: (1) water/emotional (the bucket), (2) fire/creative (the erected phallic broom handle), (3) air/intellectual (the stars) and (4) earth/material (the stone wall). We will see that the Magician in tarot arcana is offered the same four symbolic tools to initiate his initiation journey.

Before detailing the Magician symbols in the four previously selected tarot decks, let’s look at the Fool and the Magician positions in the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. That structure works for almost all tarot decks major arcana. We selected the Tarot de Marseille (TDM) where the Fool is called “Le Mat” and the Magician “Le Bateleur”. They can be seen at the image bottom.


The Fool was a link between Planet Earth (tangible sphere) and the Moon (imaginary sphere). The Magician is a link between the Moon (imaginary sphere) and the planet Venus (emotional sphere). As he performs, an experienced Magician tricks emotionally his audience to divert its attention from the real tangible world to the illusionary fantasy world.

A word about the arcana characters gender

The Fool and the Magician are male figures and the coming Empress and High Priestess are female. When it comes to symbolic meaning each arcanum character is gender-blind. So the bearded Fool´s symbolic meaning may very well apply to a woman animus (masculine unconscious) and the seductive Empress’ symbolic meaning to a man anima (feminine unconscious).

Let’s now observe the four different Magician arcana

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)


The TDM major arcana are numbered from 1 to 21 on the top (except the numberless Fool “Le Mat”) and have their names on the bottom (except the nameless arcana 13). In the TDM deck, the Magician is called “Le Bateleur” which could be translated as a street showman. In the arcana there is no audience and the table is covered with a lot of varied objects, which indicates that the show is in the preparation stage. The Magician is standing at the very beginning of his journey with an immense untapped potentiality at his disposal. He looks like rehearsing facing an invisible audience. When ready, he will have to move into action.

For now let’s observe the objects in his hands (moving symbols) and on the table (stable symbols). Again we see the four life spheres but this time associated with the minor arcana four suits (to be detailed in a future post). (1) Material: the gold coin (need to earn a living) in his right (active) hand = Coins Suit, (2) Emotional: the cups (receptive object) on the table = Cup Suit, (3) Creative: the double-ended (earth-sky) magic wand (used to integrate the 4 life spheres into a spiritual 5th) in his left (receptive) hand = Wand Suit, and (4) Intellectual: the knife (cutting-edge analytical mind) on the table = Sword Suit.

More objects can be identified on the table. (a) The distillation retort (transformation) glassware (transparency) used by alchemists (magicians), (b) three dices (chance, “rolling the dices”), (c) more coins (good luck, alchemical capacity to transform lead into gold) and a big bag (endless reserve of life tools). His hat is shaped in a lemniscate (infinite mental abilities).

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM Magician needs to prepare his initiation journey by tapping energy from his infinite reserve.

 Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)


Similarly to the TDM Magician, the RWS Magician has the same 4 symbolic vital objects on the table (coin, cup, wand and sword) and a lemniscate (infinite energy) over his head. Both hold a double-ended magic wand, but the TDM Magician holds it in his left (receptive) hand in a 45-degree direction (not vertical yet) and the RWS vertically (as above so below = human inner life mirrors the cosmos) in his right (active) hand.

The RWS Magician shows the earth with his left hand and the sky with his right indicating his ability to link material energy from the earth to the spiritual energy in the sky. The red roses symbolize love, the white lilies purity and the yellow background consciousness.

His red cloak symbolizes life energy ready for practical action and his white  headband his mental aspiration to truth and spirituality. His serpent-like belt (Ouroboros eating its own tail = eternal renewal) around the waist reminds of mythological Hermes (see the MT and ST Magician below) caduceus.

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS Magician needs to always direct his life journey with a spiritual objective in mind.

Mythic Tarot (MT)


Such as in both images above, one of the MT Magician’s hand shows the sky and the other the earth and the 4 suits symbols appear again. While they represent very explicitly the 4 minor arcana suits (coin, cup, wand and sword), they are now oriented in 4 directions (the crossing of life roads). The coin (physical body) and the cup (emotional heart) are opposite. The sword (intellectual mind) crosses the wand (creative instincts) indicating two roads directions.

The MT Magician’s magic wand is now a caduceus (more about Hermes in the ST Magician). The two snakes symbolize pairs of opposites (male/female, light/darkness, peace/war, etc…) including the 2 life paths now being offered. Facing the stone, the 2 road directions and the 4 objects, the Magician needs to choose a life path direction. His table is a flat rock laying directly on the ground (very tangible). There is no air under the table as before (no more time for preparation). It is time to make a choice.

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT Magician needs to make the  choice of his life direction.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)


This card is all about Hermes, his wings (mobility of head and feet) and holding a roll (intellectual magic wand) in his hand. The urban landscape is circled by a river and accessible from a flowery road (happiness) by a bridge (linking nature with manmade village). In the arcana corners, we see the astrological symbols of Gemini (mobility) zodiacal sign and its ruling planet Mercury (Roman God equivalent of Greek Hermes).

Hermes is born from Zeus extramarital affair with the nymph Maia. This affair was the only one that his jealous wife Hera was unaware of and could not use her tricks to break it of. Thus Hermes was born of trickery.

When he was only one day old, Hermes sneaked out of his home where he found a tortoise which he converted into a lyre. Looking for more excitement, he then stole his brother Apollo’s cattle and covered the theft up. After this episode, Hermes went back home and entered through the keyhole, climbed back into his cradle with his lyre and slept like an innocent baby.

Besides being the Messenger of Gods, the God of Merchants, Thieves and other Tricksters, Hermes was also the Magician. We saw how the Magician could change himself into air and enter the keyhole. As another example of his magical skills, Hermes charmed Cerberus to sleep so that he could slip in the Underworld unnoticed and escort Persephone back to earth.

Psychologically Hermes the Magician symbolizes the power to make things invisible and to master the magic of thoughts, images, and words. Regardless of how difficult the road may be, Hermes wings will manage to circumvent the obstacle by uniting the earth (material part) with the sky (intellectual part).

To reach a higher awareness level, the ST Magician needs to find his way by holding opposites.



In a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the Magician needs to (1) prepare his initiation journey by tapping energy from his infinite reserve, (2) always direct his life journey with a spiritual objective in mind, (3) make the  choice of his life direction and (4) find his way by holding opposites.

As a practical simple advice, your inner Magician recommends that you make a choice of your life direction and build a new reality.

Click on 2 for the MAGICIAN Practical Exercises

02 The Incubating HIGH PRIESTESS


Disguised as a man, Pope Joan aka John Angelicus aka John VIII was a female Pontiff during the medieval times. Her identity was exposed when she gave birth to a child during a procession.

617x951-pope-joanLegend or reality? Reality skeptics note that the first references to Pope Joan only appear hundreds of years after her supposed reign. Reality supporters however argue that the Church may have attempted to first hide and later erase all evidence of her existence from historical records. While today’s scholars are inkling towards the legend thesis, even as of today this story remains an unsolved mystery. Pope Joan imposture has been a controversial topic in books, movies, songs, videos, TV stories and debates.

There are countless articles about this fascinating story to be found online, such as in Wikipedia. Just Google “Pope Joan” and you will be comforted by the legend option if you are Catholic and puzzled if you are not. An interesting ABC-TV story titled “Looking For Pope Joan” aired ten years ago. Click here to download the ABC News Press Release.

The tarot arcanum number 2 is named “La Papesse” (The Popess) in the French TDM, which was created during the Renaissance when Pope Joan story was believed to be true. Five centuries later, an English tarot school chose to name that arcanum “The High Priestess” when the legend credibility started to fade.

From a symbolic perspective, it doesn’t matter whether the story really happened or is a legend. For the narrative though, the premise of a woman disguised as a man is more acceptable than a man becoming pregnant. On the early stage of the initiation, Joan symbolizes a pregnant mother (incubating an embryo), who happened to be a Pope (universal love) and delivering a child (giving birth to a new living heart).

This post will establish that the symbolism of the pregnant High Priestess “La Papesse” (arcanum #2) will fit perfectly between the androgyne Magician (arcanum #1) and the seductive Empress (arcanum #3). Before detailing the High Priestess symbols in the four previously selected tarot decks, let’s look at the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. That structure works for almost all tarot decks major arcana. We selected the Tarot de Marseille (TDM) where the Fool is called “Le Mat”, the Magician “Le Bateleur” and the High Priestess “La Papesse”. They can be seen at the image bottom.

1563x2023-flower-high-priestessThe High Priestess “La Papesse” links the circle of “Venus” (human love and beauty) with the circle of the “Heart” (divine love and beauty), symbolizing the unified love of mother-deity in the pregnancy.

Let’s now observe the four different High Priestess arcana.

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)

320x600-priestess-jodoThe TDM tarot deck we are showing here is the Jodorowsky/Camoin digitally renovated version of the original 1790 Conver cards. During those days, the story of Pope Joan was considered as true and the second TDM arcanum was named “La Papesse” (The Popess) after her. Lots of symbols can be seen on this arcanum: (1) Her white (virgin purity) face and hands (her only visible body parts remind us of the five senses), (2) The skin-colored (human life) book (study and accumulation of knowledge), (3) the white egg (embryo) under her left (receptive) elbow (incubation), (4) the blue sky (spiritual) bands (including three small crosses) crossing (Christianity) her chest (heart), (5) the yellow (intellectual), orange (spiritual) and red (life) tiara (divine ruler), (6) the sky blue curtain behind her head (spiritual enclosure), (7) the abundant clothing (spiritual protection from physical world).

The Magician made his first step on his initiation path, but like the Apprentice Sorcerer he doesn’t master his magical power right away. He has to meet the Higher Priestess first in order to learn and accumulate the knowledge needed for his journey. This will require patience for his gestation period length. There are no shortcuts. Even a smart woman cannot shorten the 9-month pregnancy duration. The Magician embryo (arcanum #1) needs the High Priestess for his spiritual gestation (arcanum #2) that takes time until finally the Empress (arcanum #3) will hatch and radiate.

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM High Priestess “La Papesse” needs to take the time to accumulate inner knowledge before acting in the world.

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)

350x600-priestess-waiteThe RWS tarot deck was created in 1909. By then Pope Joan story had entered the legend theory acceptance and the “High Priestess” replaced “La Papesse”. She could no longer have the Christian Pontiff attributes. Her head would no longer be covered with a tiara. She now wears a horned moon shape headdress, associated with the Egyptian goddess Hathor (switching the two syllables makes “thor-ha”). Her book contains the letters “T O R A” implying also the Jewish Torah. The two pillars marked with the letters B and J, which refer to the names of Boaz and Jachin as found on the Old Testament Temple of Solomon two entrance columns. The veil (spiritual world inside the temple) behind the High Priestess contain pomegranates (613 seeds = 613 Torah commandments).  These four references to Jewish wisdom symbolize spiritual knowledge.

This arcanum evokes the Greek invasion of Israel by Alexander the Great who forbade the study of the Torah during the fourth century BC. Some Kabbalah scholars indicate that to circumvent the interdiction, the Jewish people created the first tarot decks whose symbols would cover the entire Torah esoteric content. Playing tarot cards would then enable the Torah study without detection. The ruse lasted until the Maccabees expelled the Greeks from Israel. After that, the tarot decks were forgotten until being revived during the fifteen century.

Among the remaining symbols, we see a yellow (spiritual) moon (unconscious) at her feet (mother earth). The High Priestess robe is white (purity) and blue (truth) with a cross (incarnation in time and space) on her heart (love and beauty).

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS High Priestess needs to set love, beauty and truth as key priorities.

Mythic Tarot (MT)

356x600-priestess-mythicThe MT High Priestess share the two pillars with the two arcana above as well as Astro Tarology “Flower of Life” reminding Kabbalah pillars of severity and mercy. The dark column represents the pillar of will and the light column the pillar of pleasure, the two unconscious conflicting energies. The MT High Priestess shows in her right hand the seeds of an opened pomegranate, which religious symbolism was mentioned above and which mythologic symbolic meaning will be described in the myth of Persephone below.

The mythological Greek character associated with the High Priestess is Persephone. She is the daughter of earth mother Demeter (who is associated with the Empress arcanum that will be next in our study) and Zeus. Hades, Zeus brother and lord of the underworld, was in love with Persephone. He abducted her while she was picking narcissus, brought her to the underworld and marry her. Protesting such abuse, Demeter prevented all vegetation to grow on earth turning the land more and more sterile. Zeus then decide to send Hermes to the underground to bring Persephone back to earth. The problem Hermes faced was that Persephone had eaten pomegranate seeds (both the food of the dead and conjugal love) making her bound forever in the underground. A compromise was finally found. Persephone would share her time between the underground and earth, where she would return at each Spring beginning.

More symbols can be found in the MT High Priestess arcanum. (1) Unlike the two arcana above, she wear a golden crown on her head (she became the queen of the underworld), (2) her skin is pale (there is no light in the underworld) but not white (she comes back to earth every Spring), (3) her dress is all white (pure virginity), (4) there are narcissus (dead flower during winter that emerges to light in Spring) on the floor as well as in her left (receptive) hand (reminder of her abduction), (5) behind her we see the long road from darkness to the terrestrial light on her annual return.

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT High Priestess needs to hold both light and darkness unconscious energies.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)

371x600-priestess-symbolonThe Symbolon Tarot is based on astrology and mythology. There are no more pillars, but the symbolism remain the same. The image left side shows the night (dark convoluted path, house, mountains, moon) while the right shows the daylight (fertile ground, river, tree, dragonfly, sun). In the middle the Priestess is dressed in white (purity) and blue (truth). Above her head is a yellow star (cosmic spirituality). Her yellowish face (spiritual mental abilities) is the only visible body part (protection from the physical world). She wear a religious necklace (separating her head from her body).

In the four card corners, we see the ST High Priestess astrologic analogies with the Cancer and Sagittarius signs as well as the Moon and Jupiter, their respective planetary rulers. The Symbolon cards associations with astrologic symbols differ from those in the Astro Tarology “Flower of Life”. Because of its exclusive structure, the “Flower of Life” mandala will always be different than any other astrological affinities with tarot cards.

To confuse the reader a little more about Greek mythology correlations, the ST High Priestess is associated with Mnemosyne, different than MT High Priestess Persephone. Both relate to Hades underground and represent valid analogies. What was Mnemosyne story?

Daughter of Uranus and Gaia, Titaness Mnemosyne (name related to the word “mnemonic”) was the mother of the nine Muses (epic and lyric poetry, history, music, tragedy, hymns, dance, comedy, astronomy) all conceived during nine consecutive nights by Zeus. In Hades underground water to dead souls was available from two sources: (1) the Lethe river and (2) a pool presided by Mnemosyne. When drinking from the Lethe, the dead would not remember their past lives, but from Mnemosyne pool they would. Thus Mnemosyne symbolizes past memories, personal truth and soulful insights accessible through introspection or therapy.

To reach a higher awareness level, the TS High Priestess needs to be open to past memories, personal truth and soulful insights.


1450x700-the-high-priestess-four-arcanaIn a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the High Priestess needs to (1) take the time to accumulate inner knowledge before acting in the world, (2) set love, beauty and truth as key priorities, (3) hold both light and darkness unconscious energies and (4) be open to past memories, personal truth and soulful insights.

As a practical simple advice, your inner High Priestess recommends that you plan any new action and prepare patiently before implementation.

Click on 2 for the HIGH PRIESTESS Practical Exercises

00 – The Traveling FOOL

953x946-tree-pirogueEvery person is torn between two needs. (1) The need of the Pirogue which symbolizes the travel, the tearing from one’s inner self and (2) The need of the Tree which is that of the roots, of the identity. Thus people are constantly wandering between these two needs, yielding sometimes to one and sometimes to the other … until they understand that it is with the Tree that one produces the Pirogue.
– Melanesian myth from the island of Vanuatu


With his unlimited amount of energy and freedom, the Fool is ready to travel anywhere on the spur-of-the-moment.

The 78 arcana (cards) of a Tarot deck represent our life journey from our incarnation on earth to our spiritualization in the sky. The ubiquitous Fool mirrors all life potentials inside each of us. Let’s expand on the Fool’s four different arcana mentioned in the post about the Tarot cards introduction (there is also a navigation bar on the bottom if needed.)

Tarot de Marseille (TDM)


We indicated previously that to each of the Fool’s four body parts corresponds one of the four human life spheres. Now, to each sphere let’s also attach an element and a color. (1) Material: earth/green, (2) Emotional: water/blue, (3) Creative: fire/red and (4) Intellectual: air/yellow. Note that the water element is celestial like the clouds and fire is terrestrial like the volcanoes.

The entire TDM Tarot deck contains 11 different colors, each with its own symbolic meaning. Number of those colors appear in the Fool arcana, but for now we will focus on the blue sky color. Blue refers to our emotional life (receptivity) and the blue sky –its more subtle version– symbolizes our receptive emotions at the celestial (sky) level.

The Fool arcana shows that the blue sky color is present in each of his four body parts and appears only once in each. (1) Head/intellectual: shoulder stick that separates the head from his body (humans are only intellectual animals), (2) Heart/emotional: wide open sleeves (“he wears his heart on his sleeve”), (3) Guts/creative: a dog pushes a “fig leave”, implying the Fool’s artistic-sexual creations and (4) Feet/material: the soil color changes to blue sky (conscious awakening) as he walks.

To reach a higher awareness level, the TDM Fool needs to open his heart to the celestial level in all four life spheres (material, emotional, creative, intellectual).

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS)


With his head looking up in the sky, the RWS Fool appears more like a careless dreamer. Both the TDM and the RWS Fools carry a small bag (representing all their belongings as they are detached from material goods and don’t need much to travel) on a stick on their shoulder.

While the TDM Fool walks on solid ground (realist), holds the stick with his left hand (receptive) and looks to our right (the future), the RWS Fool walks on the edge of a cliff (idealist), holds the stick with his right hand (active) and looks to our left (the past).

Both costumes are very different too, with colorful accessories (rich potentials) in the TDM and flowers (innocence) in the RSW. The dog symbolizes our animal instincts. While the TDM dog pushes the Fool to move ahead (future), the RWS dog warns the Fool not to (imminent danger.)

The white rose in the Fool’s hand is a symbol of purity and the red feather on his cap represents his vitality. The white sun (pure consciousness) in the yellow (intelligence) sky (spiritual) is in the top right corner (the beacon is the farther possible in the arcana = long journey).

To reach a higher awareness level, the RWS Fool needs to rely on his purity and innocence in order to trade security for freedom.

Mythic Tarot (MT)


In the MT, the Fool looks like an irresponsible young boy wearing animal skins (primitive instincts) coming out of a cave (the past) and about to jump over a cliff (the unknown). The rising sun (consciousness) on the horizon is far away (at the end of a very long path). The stones on the ground indicate that he his about to leave the material world (security) behind him while jumping in the air (freedom).

In the MT mythological deck, the Fool correlates to Dionysos whose existence was complicated even before he was born. His mother Semele was a mortal princess who got pregnant by none other than Zeus, the god of gods himself. Hera, Zeus’ wife was furious of her husband infidelity and planned to kill the pregnant mother and her baby. Hera succeeded in killing Semele, but the unborn child was saved by Zeus who pursued the pregnancy by having the fetus implanted in his thigh. The magic surgeon was non other than Hermes, another son of Zeus born out of wedlock. Finally Dionysos was born, which did not stop Hera’s anger who still wanted him dead. She almost succeeded but again Zeus saved Dionysos heart that was used to revived him in Hades (Zeus brother) underground where his wife Persephone became a surrogate mother delivering Dionysos with a second birth (the Twice-Born, Dionysos became the god of light and ecstasy.) Hera was still mad and forced him to wander endlessly in the world, but Zeus got the last word by inducting Dionysos as a full fledged god sitting in the Olympus at the right hand of his father.


Dionysos brought the gift wine to mankind as well as the spiritual redemption for those willing to renounce to their power and material possessions. Dionysos symbolic wine always implies the danger of the unknown. With the deity protection, his altered state of mind will lead him to a higher consciousness level. However, without protection he could have fallen into foolishness. Taking a chance to live a more fuller life is uncertain but well worth taking the risk.

The eagle (royal bird) in the MT Fool arcana refers to Zeus protection. The horns symbolize Dionysos animal instincts while the flower crown his divine vineyard.

To reach a higher awareness level, the MT Fool needs to trust his animal instincts and follow his intuitive impulses.

Symbolon Tarot (ST)


The ST card now shows a colorful Jester walking happily on his initiation path towards a yellow thunderbolt (consciousness) far away in the mountains.  Like in the TDM and RWS, the ST Fool carries a stick on his shoulder with a bag at its end, though with a puppet of a king (his deflated ego) hanging out. The path is bordered with rocks (“rocky road”) and flowers (pleasure). Like the TDM Fool he walks with a cane (support) to strengthen his determination and self-confidence.

In the ST astrologic deck, the Fool is associated with the zodiac sign of Aquarius (freedom and humanism) and its ruling planet Uranus (originality and revolution). Both astrological glyphs appear on the Arcana corners. Both Uranus and Aquarius require impulse and determination to act in order to embark in a new beginning on the journey of life. The path leads to a small isolated village which can be interpreted as the emerging Age of Aquarius (unity of science and art as well as a more humane life paradigm).

990x510-aquariusA preview of the Age of Aquarius new paradigm can be illustrated by Michael Tellinger idealist Ubuntu Planet project. He sees a world where people do not live divided in fear of each other but rather live in united communities that thrive in abundance on all levels. He travels the world evangelizing his vision. Click to purchase his book.

To reach a higher awareness level, the ST Fool needs to free itself from habits in order to tap in its limitless potentials.


Though the ST deck of contains also 78 illustrated cards, it is more an oracle deck of cards than a Tarot deck. We included those ST cards in this presentation because of their psycho-astrologic roots. The celestial bodies in the Astro Tarology original mandala “The Flower Of Life” also follow astrological connections, but is in a completely unique structure. Details are developed in a post about Kabbalah, Astrology and Tarot.

In Astro Tarology mandala the “Flower Of Life” the Fool act as an astrological mediator between the planet Earth (terrestrial body) and the Moon (celestial mind) paralleling Dionysos material-spiritual ambiguity (cave and eagle).


In a summary, we can say that to reach a higher awareness level, the Fool needs to (1) open his heart to the celestial level in all four life spheres (material, emotional, creative, intellectual), (2) rely on his purity and innocence in order to trade security for freedom, (3) trust his animal instincts and follow his intuitive impulses and (4) free itself from habits in order to tap in its limitless potentials.

As a practical simple advice, your inner Fool recommends that you follow your instincts and move on with a fresh beginning.

Click on 2 for the FOOL Practical Exercises