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Eight of Disks: Prudence

ThothRider-Waite

Prudence: Attention to Detail, Caution, and Hard Work

The Eight of Disks. Prudence. Detail. Diligence. Micromanagement. Hard Work. Thrift. Putting a Little Aside. Beginnings of Advancement. Caution. Too much Caution. Being Miserly or Stringy With Resources. Practical Wisdom. The Eight of Disks corresponds to the Sefirot of Hod; Knowledge, Structure, and the Intellectual Weakness of the energy of the Suit. It is the reaction to the degenerate, more emotional weakness of Netzach. When one sees the corruption and lack of success and prosperity, the immediate reaction is to immediately watch what you do more carefully, exercising Caution and Thrift. One will manage their resources better, and Work Hard and be Diligent. They will micromanage everything and pay attention to Detail. They will then Begin to Recover and Advance, and Put a Little Bit Aside. This card represents the logical reaction to Failure: Prudence.

In addition to the Intellectual reaction, this card represents the Intellectual Weakness. This card can also then mean too much prudence; being Stringy with money, not willing to give, having Too Much Caution, and losing yourself in the details and Micromanagement. It can represent the beginnings of success, but only when not taken to extremes.

The Rider-Waite art shows a man working diligently on a series of coins; he is focused and paying attention to the detail of the coins, ignoring even his frayed clothing (hinting at the idea of focusing too much on your task). The Thoth art shows a tree growing strong, with eight Disks as flowers on branches. It looks big and strong, but the branches are somewhat twisted and the sky behind it shows the light of a harsh sun. Despite the heat and drought, the plant will flourish; but this card then also has a slightly ominous tone, and warns that the world is not fair.

In a reading, this card asks you to examine the role that prudence, thrift, caution, and careful use of resources play in your life. It could advise you to consider being thrifty, or warn that you are being miserly and not generous enough. Are you paying too much attention to details? Have you been working hard? Reversed, this card’s energies are hidden or twisted somehow; is your hard work helping you progress or is it just busywork? Are your gifts to others cheap and miserly? Is your hard work and diligence paying off?

 
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Posted by on May 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Seven of Disks: Failure

ThothRider-Waite

Failure: Self-loathing, Corruption, and Loss

The Seven of Disks. Failure. Losing. Being Spoiled. Trickery. Corruption. Theft. Self-loathing. Disappointment. Loss of Work. Not Succeeding. Frustration. The Seven of Disks corresponds to the Sefirot of Netzach; Bliss and the Degenerate Weakness of the Suit of Disks. This card then represents what happens materially when one gives into degenerativity, and that is Failure. When one who has power and wealth – as one who has been successful in the area of Disks has – gives in to degenerate weakness, he becomes Corrupt. One who is successful materially is Spoiled. This card represents what comes after Success if one stops working, and that is Not Succeeding. One might Lose the Work that they strove so hard to accomplish before, it having been Stolen from them. Things might not come to you as they once did, leading to Frustration and Disappointment.

This card, in addition to representing the corruption one often devolves into after Success, also can be seen as the full representation of the second half of the implied dichotomy of the Six of Disks. This card allows you to examine the flipside of Success – Failure – in full, showing the reader the lower – and many would say greater – part of inequality. In this sense, this card also represents Losing, Self-loathing and Disappointment at not being able to succeed, unable to get to where you want to be due to Corruption or Trickery, and Frustration at your Hard Work Failing Accomplish what you desire. The Seven of Disks, then, has two meanings: the failure one has when they can no longer sustain their success, and the failure one has when they never were able to achieve success.

The Rider-Waite art does not at all reflect this meaning of the card, showing a man leaning on a staff and surveying the fruits of his labor. This card in the Rider-Waite tradition merely illustrates the aspect of the Six of Pentacles pertaining to success through hard work. The Thoth art shows seven disks – representing coins and wealth – lying forgotten on a field of black feathers – probably those of the raven, the harbringer of bad news.

In a reading, this card asks you to examine the role of failure in your life or the situation. Did you do all you could to succeed? Did you make a poor decision and lose all you had? Do you beat yourself up for not doing as well as you would like? Reversed, this card’s energies are blocked, hidden, or twisted somehow; perhaps your apparent success is not what it seems to be, or perhaps your failure is undeserved.

 
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Posted by on May 22, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Six of Disks: Success

ThothRider-Waite

Success: Hard-Won Possession of Resources, Knowledge, and Respect

The Six of Disks. Success. Power. Wealth. Resources. Knowledge. Respect. Reward After Work. Inequality. Quiet Triumph. Reassessment. The Six of Disks corresponds to the Sefirot of Tiphareth; the Conscious Harmony of the suit of Disks and the element of Experience. Tiphareth represents the central balance of the Suit, being located at the center of the Tree of Life. This card, then represents the harmonious nature of the Suit of Disks, and that which is achieved through experience, taking both of the meanings of the Sefirot literally (as is in the spirit of Disks). When one with experience goes out into the world to live their life, what do they often manage to do? Achieve Success. This card represents what one might possess after achieving material and practical success; Wealth, Power, Resources, and Respect. It represents also the idea of receiving a Reward After Hard Work. It encompasses many of the previous themes of the Suit of Disks, and represents what one can expect if one works with the element of Earth under the guiding light of Kether. This card represents also a sort of Quiet Triumph; success can certainly be considered a triumph, but is rarely celebrated like a military victory would be. The kind of triumph this card represents is the more common form of triumph in the real world; that of living comfortably after hard work.

On a slightly darker note, this card also represents Inequality. Not everyone succeeds; many fail. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction; for everyone who succeeds, there is someone who fails. In many cases, in our hypercapitalist world, success is achieved at the expense of another. It is important to keep this thought in mind; while this card indicates worldy (not heavenly or spiritually, mind) success, it also points out the existence of the next card in the Suit; Failure. It points out that a dichotomy does exist, and advises us to be wary of it.

The Rider-Waite art best illustrates the concept of inequality; a wealthy man (with the appearance of a merchant, who worked for his wealth) stands above two less fortunate men who are kneeling, giving each of them gold, while also carrying a scale; the wealthy and successful man has obtained material resources and power over those who have been less successful in life’s endeavors. The presence of the two poor men also directly points out the inequality inherent in life, and the existence of the complement of Success. The Thoth art shows Six Disks arranged in a stable hexagonal pattern surrounding a flower blooming (plants grow only after hard work in caring for them) at the center of a cross (representing dedication and sacrifice to get to where you are). These six Disks, in turn, rest upon six larger, more stable Disks, indicating a degree of stability and a sense of power. The idea of Success is also here directly, as there are in fact twelve Disks on this card, rather than six.

In a reading, this card suggests that you examine the role of success, respect, justly earned reward, power, knowledge, and wealth in your life. It asks you to look at your life and think about why you have been successful (or not successful). It advises you to work hard to obtain your reward; lounging around won’t get you anywhere. Are you respected? Do you have any power? Knowledge? Reversed, this card’s energies are twisted, blocked, or hidden somehow. This card could indicate that you need to Reassess your current life-path or situation, or stop and consider if you are where you want to be. When reversed, this card also can emphasize the nature of inequality, and bring your attention to the idea of failure in terms of the opposite of success.

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Five of Disks: Worry

ThothRider-Waite

Worry: Instability, Despair, and Helplessness

The Five of Disks. Worry. Rejection. Hard Times. Ill Health. Instability. Strain. Inaction. Helplessness. Despair. The Five of Disks corresponds to the Sefirot of Gebyuah: Motion that upsets the balance. Geburah as a Sefirot represents instability, and the Suit of Disks at its best represents stability. As such, the Five of Disks is the unstable aspect of stability; essentially, it represents the effects of one’s stability being taken away from them. It is the energy associated with being thrown out of the Fortress of the Four of Disks; a physical movement with dire consequences. Without the protection and defense of Power, one is Helpless; they have fallen on Hard Times and may be suffering from some form of Ill Health. After being Rejected by the Fortress, your life becomes Unstable, and a lot of Strain is put on your life. You may be paralyzed by Inaction. This card, essentially, represents one’s life without any support and stability; this is the card of the lame beggar.

Indeed, the Rider-Waite art depicts a lame man and old woman out in the snow, outside the lighted windows of the Church; they have been Rejected and are clearly suffering from Ill Health and Hard Times. The Thoth illustration shows five large, heavy, dark Disks bound together by strings in the shape of an inverted pentacle, indicating Instability, which is the primary emphasis of this card. The arrangement of Disks seems to be precariously dangling over a pool of lava, giving a sense of constant danger and therefore Strain.

In a reading, the Five of Disks asks you to examine the roles that helplessness, rejection, and rough times may have in your life. Have you been down on your luck lately? Felt powerless? Were rejected by friends or family? Given in to a sense of despair? Reversed, this card’s energies are blocked, hidden, or twisted somehow; maybe you are not as helpless as you appear, or your powerful position masks the inability to make choices (such as Londo Mollari’s comment in Babylon 5: “And now I have all the power I could ever want and no choices at all”).

 
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Posted by on May 13, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Four of Disks: Power

ThothRider-Waite

Power: Control, Impenetrability, and Stubborness

The Four of Disks. Power. Authority. Law. Order. Defense. Stubborness. Impenetrability.  Blocked Change. Immobility. Display of Strength. Control. Possessiveness. The Four of Disks corresponds to the Sefirot of Chesed: Growth, condensation, stability, and matter. The Four of Disks is the spot where the energy of the Suit of Disks – having been given birth to in Binah – condenses and materializes into its first recognizable form – that of Power. The Works of Three have finally been created, and the result of this potential was the Four of Disks. This card represents what most people think of as “Earth” – Stubborness, Impenetrability, Defense, and Immobility. This card is extremely Solid, and is a good basis for Authority; it is extremely Ordered and can also represent the inflexible rule of the Law. This card also represents the Visible Strength of the Earth, and its inability to give in or yield. This card’s stable nature is reinforced by its association with the Sefirot corresponding to Stability; this card is the stable part of Earth, which is quite sturdy, immovable, and powerful indeed.

The Rider-Waite art shows a man standing in the way of the reader, blocking them. He also has his hands around one of the disks, holding it possessively. He stands atop two more disks, and doesn’t look like he’s going anywhere soon. The Thoth art shows a fortress made of four square disks, with high walls and only one entrance. It is very well-defended, and is a symbol and visual Display of Strength, as well as an Impenetrable fortress and definitely an Immobile and Immovable object. It will stand its ground no matter what.

In a reading, this card asks you to examine the role that stubborness, immobility, inflexibility, resistance to change, displays of strength, and ideas of possession and control play in your life. Have you been stubborn lately? Felt as if you were in control? Felt a need to show others how powerful you were? Reversed, this card’s energies are blocked or twisted somehow; the displays of strength might just be a facade, or perhaps you are not as immobile as you would believe yourself to be. Maybe, though, you have inner reserves to allow you to hold your ground that you didn’t know were there before.

 
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Posted by on May 12, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Three of Disks: Works

ThothRider-Waite

Works:

The Three of Disks. Constructivity. Building. Designing. Planning. Accomplishment. Competence. Teamwork. Cooperation. The Three of Disks corresponds to the Sefirot of Binah; understanding, the birthing ground, and the plane. The Three of Disks is where the energy of the Suit begins to come into itself and realize some of its potential; it is where the groundwork for the subsequent numbered cards in the suit, and provides a base for them to build off of. In the case of Disks, this card is Works; it represents great accomplishments finished through Teamwork and Cooperation, as well as Competent Planning and Design, resulting in something being Built. This card represents the practical wisdom of working together with others, reflecting the duality seen in the Sefirot of Binah, and the subsequent material benefits of this action.

The Rider-Waite art shows three men in discussion, one of whom is holding what appears to be some sort of blueprint or plan. They stand beneath ornate architecture, emphasizing this card’s emphasis on Teamwork and Building. The Thoth art shows an aerial view of a pyramid amidst the desert sands; one of the greatest collaborative works ever achieved.

In a reading, this card asks you to examine the role that working with others to achieve a common goal has played in your life. Are you part of a team? Have you been working together well? Have you planned things out to accomplish your task? Reversed, this card’s energies are twisted or blocked somehow; perhaps your team is not as competent as you would have liked, or you need to rethink your plan.

 
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Posted by on May 11, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Two of Disks: Change

ThothRider-Waite

Change: Flexibility, Balance, and Stability Through Motion

The Two of Disks. Change. Stability Through Motion. The Infinite. Whirling. Motion. Balance. Flexibility. Juggling. Steadiness Through Readjustment. Change representing the Two of Disks – at the Sefirot of Chokmah, representing the original harmony and power of creation of the element of Earth – might seem to some an odd association at first glance. Earth’s common association is with immobility and solidity, which is not an entirely accurate association. The Earth does, in fact, move, but at exceedingly slow paces; the drift of continents and the bursting of volcanoes are all aspects of the element of Earth. There is, then, motion present, but this motion is not violent; it is slow, and steady, and helps to keep the Earth in balance. It is this motion that the Two of Disks represents. The fiery energy of creation associated with Chokmah is also manifested through the idea of change, but it’s quick qualities are reduced by the influence of the Suit of Disks. The harmony of the Suit of Disks is achieved through slow change to maintain the balance and harmony; anything that is unable to move will not endure, and as Earth endures, movement is necessary to its survival.

The Two of Disks, then, represents the idea of Stability Through Motion, and a constant Steadiness Through Readjustment. It represents the small adjustments one makes to achieve Balance, as well as the Infinite character of the world and its motion. It represents Adaptability and Change in order to survive and endure. It also is tied to the idea of Juggling in order to maintain stability and make sure nothing happens to disrupt the order. It is the Flexiblity needed for us all to survive.

The Rider-Waite illustration shows a young man juggling two pentacles, with rope around them making the symbol of infinity. Behind him are rolling waves. The entire scene is reminiscent of the idea of steady motion and balance. The Thoth art shows a crowned snake biting its own tail, looped into the symbol of infinity around to disks, both symbols representing the concept of the infinite. The snake is also a symbol of motion of a kind that cannot be unbalanced. The crown also signifies the stability of the snake’s power and control. The two Disks on the card are Yin-Yangs, which also serve as symbols of balance and harmony.

In a reading, the Two of Disks asks you to examine the role that small adjustments to your course in life may play in said life. It advises you to be flexible and willing to yield sometimes in order to keep things going; motion is necessary to keep things from falling. It also advises you to keep moving and not stay in one place for too long, lest you become stagnant and fall into ruin and decay. Reversed, this card’s energy is blocked or twisted somehow; perhaps your needed motion is being blocked by something, or your apparent motion is not accomplishing what needs to be done.

 
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Posted by on May 10, 2011 in Uncategorized