THE FOOL - EL MATTO
Hebrew Letters - Houses of the Holy
The eternal traveller, ready for the lesson. Mind open and free, bounding into the unknown.
People who devote their energies to spirituality are called "fools" in our time; this could be a modern interpretation of the message contained in this card. If a reverent approach to life is considered foolish, perhaps society needs to rethink its premises. People waste massive amounts of energy on "Not Looking Foolish." The Fool defeats the Cold-Eyed Rationalist. The Fool is credulous, but his credo is in the Abstract Mystery.
The Fool's face looks up in awe - this is one of the most important impulses to cultivate. Awe implies gratitude, another important impulse to practice and develop. The Fool is amazed and ready to partake of the universe that has been handed to him.
AWE is the Hallmark of a Religious Experience
The Fool is "ingenuous" - that is, innocent, trusting, un-manipulating, un-cynical. He is without guile. This characteristic, combined with awe and gratitude, produces a Healing Elixir, a nectar that dissolves negative emotions. Hatred, rage, resentment, envy, jealousy, hopelessness, vengefulness, bitterness, cynicism, and self-loathing dissolve in the presence of True, Innocent Gratitude, with no ulterior motive. Being truly grateful for every breath, for our bodies, our food, and all of the other small miracles of life is enough to melt, or "sweeten" negative emotions of any stripe.
"Luck is being
The Fool's innocence and openness make him ready for opportunity. His cheerfulness is a vital ingredient in attracting people who can help; just as a resentful or pouting attitude seems to drive them away. He is not carrying a lot a baggage - this is another way of saying he has forgiven, and is free from entanglements, resentment, and cynicism. There is no chip on his shoulder.
Il Matto, the Fool, embodies what humanist
psychologist Carl Rogers calls "unconditional positive regard," the non-judgemental,
totally accepting warmth we feel for puppies or kittens or babies. This is the state of
mind that is cultivated on Shabbat, when we practice the "positive eye." Instead of picking
the bones from the fish, we take the fish from the bones.
This unconditional positive regard is appropriate and vital, in fact, for the thriving
of a child, especially from birth into the third and fourth years. As adults we learn to
hide our vulnerabilty except when appropriate. Many people were not provided this essential
ingredient, and suffer needlessly with unresolved pain their entire lives.
The name of the card: "Fool," employs the very criticism aimed at the innocent, making
innocence foolish. This is a blind, a deflection, because often the greatest Jedis
play the fool, to trick their enemies.
This unconditional positive regard is appropriate and vital, in fact, for the thriving of a child, especially from birth into the third and fourth years. As adults we learn to hide our vulnerabilty except when appropriate. Many people were not provided this essential ingredient, and suffer needlessly with unresolved pain their entire lives.
The name of the card: "Fool," employs the very criticism aimed at the innocent, making innocence foolish. This is a blind, a deflection, because often the greatest Jedis play the fool, to trick their enemies.
The Fool lives in the Here and Now. His connection with the life force is immediate. He sees richness and depth in every detail; appreciates each moment.
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the Palm of Your Hand
And Eternity in an Hour.
The Fool travels light, and he has a slight build. Because he is grateful, he wastes nothing, is frugal, and treasures simplicity.
Waste Betrays Gratitude
An obvious question is "Gratitude to Who? Or to What?" The fact that we cannot describe "God-ess" is not what is important here. The point is to engender "gratefulness" within ourselves; and to only make metaphors for the object of our feelings. Metaphor is our only tool for describing the Eternal - it is a boundary between Chochma and Binah, where undifferentiated wisdom becomes word.
The Fool's androgynous appearance shows another compulsion dropped - he (or she?) has reached a harmony with the Male/Female halves and is either self contained, or has perhaps transcended the entire issue of sex. From this perspective, the Fool has a kinship with the Hermit, and the Lovers, both ruled by androgynous Mercury.
The Fool's dog shows unconditional loyalty, affection, vitality, enthusiasm and vital force.
People may think you're a fool, but maybe you're fooling them. So what of the opinions of fools? ... Just don't fool yourself. The basis of theft is pretending we can fool ourselves, or the All Seeing Eye of the Creator.
HOUSES OF THE HOLY
The letters are each a "garment" of the Light. Each one is an atom of Creation Energy, with a unique signature resonating out of the timeless infinite. These elemental sparks of creation energy are clothed in garments for our benefit, so that we can begin to understand them.
from Gutman Locks:
"The individual letters of the Torah and their combinations are not subjective, conventional symbols, they are objective. Hebrew letters are the means through which physical reality comes into being and manifestation."
This belief is not confined to Hebrew. Sanskrit, to the Yogis, is the sacred language. Prayer and meditation in these languages brings the mind into more perfect harmony with the life force. Mixing awe, gratitude, respect, and a bundle of other emotions, ones who pray enhance the exchange between the Creator and the Created.
The Sepher Yetzirah says that the Infinite Being began creation by Engraving the 22 letters out of emptiness.
Then at Chapter 2:
"Twenty-two letters: engrave them, carve them, weigh them, permute them, and transform them, and with them depict the soul of all that was formed and all that will be formed in the future." "Twenty-two foundation letters: They are set in a circle as 231 Gates. The circle rotates back and forth."
The image is of the letters arranged around the horizon. The lines connect every letter to every other letter. [Poster Versions]
Betzalel, the architect of the Mishkan (Tabernacle), was the first Kabbalist, "expert in permuting the letters of Torah/Creation." [midrash] He was filled with "Kochma, and Binah, and Daat." [Ex. 31:3]
Betzalel (in the shadow of G-d), is the son of Uri (my light), son of Hur (made visible or evident). [Ex. 35:30] His genealogy could be the sentence: "G-d's light made evident in the shadow of G-d," a provocative concept.
Gematria (also gimatriya), the comparison of different words by numerical value, is another way to permute the letters, and can reveal deeper meaning in the words of Torah. For example, the Divine Name, Elohim = 86, is the same as hakisse (the Throne), and koss (cup).
from Sepher Yetzirah (2:1):
"Make Alef king over breath. Make Mem king over water. Make Shin king over fire. The head is created from fire, the belly is created from water, and the chest, created from breath, decides between them."
for a chart of:
32 Acts of God in Genesis
The letters jumped from the crown of the Creator, starting with Tav, pleading to be the first letter said.
Every letter has a shortcoming, disqualifying it, until Bet, the first letter of "BeRESHeet," (in the beginning), the first word in the Bible.
Aleph was left behind, so God compensated by making Aleph the first letter of the alphabet, and of the 10 commandments.
Seven letters are called Doubles because at one time they could be pronounced two different ways. Some still are, but the other's alternate soundings are not usually used.
The chart above shows the Hebrew alphabet arranged left to right, with the numerical equivalents. The "sophit" letters are the last five on the bottom right.
Five letters take a different form when they are at the end of a word. Sof, as in Ayn Sof Aur (no-end-light) means "end," so the letters that change form are called "sophit." ("so-FEET")
Another view of the Creation: TZIMTZUM
The Fool's rucksack hangs on a rod; little is he aware of its power. Rods (or wands) appear in Key 0, Key 1, Key 7, Key 9, and Key 21.
Aleph, the symbol of infinite unity, is actually composed of three letters, a Vav and two Yods. One hand points out, and one points in; this is also the "Coagula/Solve" symbol meaning "coagulate (or join) - and "dissolve." The "coagulation" is a drawing-in of energy. The "solve" is the use of the energy to dissolve, or cut like a laser. Keys 1, 3, 4, 11, & 15 share this symbolism.
This is where the infinitely large meets the infinitely small; it is "center everywhere, circumference nowhere -" we are the center of the universe, because it is infinite. And we are also an insignificant speck, a bubble on the cosmic oceans. This is where the transcendant and immanent meet, the Yin and Yang, the hidden essence, and the obvious essence. The Aleph calls us to feel deeply within, and to feel deeply without, and to see the radiance of life force in both places.
Aleph means several things, "OX" being only one of them. The root "AL" symbolizes power and extensive movement. The ideas which it develops are those of elevation, force, power, extent. Jews and Muslims have drawn from it the name of the deity, as in Allah, Elohim or El Shaddai. Combined with the "Pe or Fe" root (meaning mouth), "Aleph" can be seen to refer to the "mouth" of The Eternal One. Indeed, as the first holy utterance, Aleph refers to the source of life.
Aleph's meaning as "Ox" is given in Jeremiah 11:19, as a choice lamb or ox being led to slaughter. This reminds us of the innocence of this Key, as well as its deep mystical significance. The Sacrifice Concept, from the Binding of Isaac on Mount Moriah to Jesus on Mount Golgotha, or even the Buddha's "sacrifice of attachment," has a profound resonance with people.
P. F. Case points out that the ox symbolizes wealth, because of its importance as an agricultural implement. Our word "pecuniary" is from the Latin pecus: cattle. Everywhere, oxen and bulls symbolize vitality, creative force, and life-power.
Aleph is "King over Breath" in the Book of Formation (Sepher Yetzirah). Breath is life; it is our constant reminder of our incredible opportunity to have a body, and of how rare that is. Prana is translated as "breath," but the word means much more than just "breath." It is the vital energetic force; it is the "electricity" that runs our bodies and everything around us.
from Prasna Upanishad:
"Prana is the fire that burns and is the sun that gives light. Prana is the wind and the rain and the thunder in the sky. Prana is matter and is earth, what is and what is not, and what is beyond in eternity."
"The cosmic Life-Breath is forever young, forever in the morning of its power, forever on the verge of the abyss of manifestation. It is neither male nor female, hence this gay young traveler's figure might be either a lad, or a girl disguised, like Rosalind. Actually it is the Heavenly Androgyne."
Paul Foster Case
The yogic discipline built around Prana is called Pranayama.
Western Mystery Tradition assigns to Aleph "Zero," while Hebrew tradition calls it "One." In addition, forms of "aleph" are used for "thousands," and "millions." Either way, it is identified with the No-Thing from which all creation proceeds.
ONE & ZERO = TEN
The juxtaposition of one and zero suggests computer language, which is ALL ones and zeros, or on-off switches. Laurie Anderson points out that everyone wants to be number one, but no one wants to be a zero. "The problem is that they are too close together, leaving no wiggle room."
The Babylonians had a place-number system, but only late in their history. Around 400 BC, they devised a form of zero, really just a punctuation mark. The first generally agreed upon appearance of a proper zero is in India, in 876 AD. The Mayans also used zero between 250 and 900 AD. The Arabic mathematician Ibn Ezra wrote treatises in the 1100's discussing and utilizing the Indian system, and introduced zero to the western world. Fibonacci, around 1200, further helped to affix zero as a component of western mathematics. (see Tipharet for more about Fibonacci.)
The sun in the upper corner of the card is at 45� - symbolizing the working aspect, ever developing, ever progressing. The sun at it's zenith can only descend; this card shows sustained potential - strong and with room to grow. The Fool faces north-west, in the direction which, to the Masons, refers to the unknown, and the state just prior to the initiation of the creative process.
In the familiar tableau above, the Fool is at the top of a column with three Keys below, which have interesting properties. The top letter (Hey) of the three, and the bottom letter, (Qoph) are the only two letters formed with two separate parts. This differentiation is connected to Binah, and shows understanding and discernment, with the imagery further affirmed by the presence of Lamed, or Justice, who decides between. As the archetypal discoverer, the Fool has a special concern with these issues of understanding and clear judgement.
The clear thinking of the Emperor and the illusions of the Moon are above and below Justice - with the Fool initiating the process from the top.
(More to come)
Uranus' placement at birth influences the person's genius, the person's ability to recieve inspiration, or to break free from obsolete notions.
Uranus is an adaptation of a Greek word meaning: "sky."
Uranus takes 84 years to complete its orbit through the zodiac.
Uranus is the 'higher octave' of Mercury, shows inner perceptive ability, insight, and prescient ability. Afflictions to Uranus create eccentricity, accident-prone-ness, dangerous situations. Uranus is the source of sudden insight, or sudden other things. Mars transits with this planet should be watched carefully.
Uranus is Exalted in Scorpio, and Rules Aquarius. Uranus' detriment is Leo and its fall is Taurus.