The Hero/Fool's Journey: Part 2 (The Fool, the Magician & the High Priestess)
Welcome to Part 2 of "The Hero/Fool's Journey"! To recap, I will focus on the MAJOR ARCANA of the Tarot deck, which are the cards that outline the greater energy and Soul's Journey of the querent in a reading, and help to guide a Tarot reader understand the greater energies and themes at play in a person's life. However, when you put them all together, they form a story all their own, the story of the Hero or Fool's Journey.
One note on the Fool card that I want to say right away: This card is not meant to insult anyone that gets it in a reading, and it is not the Divine's way of calling someone a "fool". On the contrary, a fool is rather wise, in their child-like innocence and sense of wonder, their willingness to go where no one else would dare, say what no one else would say, and to trust blindly that whatever choice they make will be for their greater good. In fact, they are courageous in their trust. The other interesting thing to note about the Fool is that he is based on the archetype of the court jester, or literally the one called "the fool" in a medieval court. The thing about the Fool in a royal court was, he was the only one who was allowed to speak his mind to the king without fearing for his life. The Fool was not taken seriously enough to ever be considered a threat, and yet their council was often considered. They had maintained a sweet spot of being a wise sage in the guise of a young, silly clown whose only job was to "entertain".
This makes me think of so many elderly people I know who, having lived full lives full of challenges and gained so much wisdom, they have in fact grown sillier in their old age, not more stoic. In some ways, I feel this is the goal for all of us, to remain child-like in our wisdom years, innocent and joyful despite having experienced a lifetime of grief and suffering, loving and happy despite heartache. Which is probably why the Fool is numbered 0 in the Tarot. He is not only at the beginning of the Journey, he is also at the END, and it cycles round and round.Those who age into diamonds after being refined so harshly and meticulously over their lives all seem to have one understanding in common:
Life is hard, and will always be hard, so why not laugh as much as possible?
If you have ever heard the Dalai Lama speak, you will hear how often he laughs when giving his messages. I imagine Jesus laughed a lot, too.
Before I say anything more about the Fool, I will talk about the decks I'm using for my pictures. The card pictured on the left of all the cards in this blog series are from "The Good Tarot" by Colette Baron-Reid. This is a little different take on the traditional Tarot, as she uses earth elements (Air, Water, Earth, Fire) instead of the traditional suits (Swords, Cups, Pentacles, Wands), and has also incorporated animals, mystical elements like fairies and unicorns, and different ethnicities of people, which I like. The images, however, are quite different from the traditional Rider-Waite Tarot, which is the middle card in every picture. That is one of the oldest styles of Tarot, with the original deck being created in 1910, and has been recreated and re-visioned by many different artists with similar imagery in the cards. The third card in every picture is from "In Between Tarot" by Janine Worthington. This deck is fascinating, because it takes the perspective that every suit in the Minor Arcana, and the Major Arcana tells a story, and that each card should be connected, but that most decks don't show an obvious connection. Her deck shows a consecutive story told from card to card, with her cards acting as a bridge between those 2 cards, and her deck goes beautifully hand-in-hand with the Rider-Waite imagery, and that was intentional. So what I ended up doing when I studied the Hero/Fool's Journey was to combine both decks, with the Rider-Waite cards acting as the more firm definition of that card, and the "In Between" cards acting as the bridge between each Rider-Waite cards, signifying movement and upcoming change. I feel this gave me a much clearer picture of where the stories were going and how they are all connected.
What I will be sharing with you are my stream-of-consciousness thoughts, along with knowledge I already had from studying Tarot, and the combining of the 3 decks, like sweet, sweet alchemy of turning base metals into gold. The reason I am showing you 3 different versions of the Tarot is so that you can go on your own personal journey, see which pictures speak to you, draw you in, and see how you perceive them intuitively. What do the pictures tell you? I will end my personal thoughts in each section based on the "In Between" concept, as presented in the In Between guidebook, that bridges each card together, to show how each card connects to the next. And now......let the Journey begin!
0. The Fool
What does the Fool have to tell us? What does it mean to be the Fool?
Leaving everything behind that you know to pursue spiritual truth. Throwing caution to the wind. Putting complete trust in your intuition. Releasing all cares and worries, not questioning or doubting what you believe. Trusting that you will be safe and guided, that the destination will be better than where you came from. Recognizing that life is cyclical and you will reach that cliff again someday and need to make another leap. Making yourself a clean slate to become a channel for co-creation/manifestation. Being committed. Taking the leap means you already made the decision and you are sticking to it, for better or for worse, which makes manifestation possible.
IN BETWEEN CONCEPT THAT CONNECTS THE FOOL TO THE MAGICIAN: The Hero/Fool takes a leap of faith into the unknown!
1. The Magician
What does the Magician have to tell us? What does it mean to be the Magician?
Once you have made the decision to leap, you must maintain a balance at all times between heaven/earth, mind/heart, thought/intuition. You must use your intuition to decide what tool (cup, sword, wand, pentacle) you need for each situation in life. While you must hone your own intuition, you are under the guidance of the High Priestess. She trains you to become your own Creator, the magician of your own life. The magician is about finding inner balance to create reality (inner world vs. outer world), but we must be careful how we use that power! Look to the High Priestess' teaching for guidance (as she represents the Divine Feminine/Ancient Wisdom) for how to manifest. Sometimes she will tell us to wait or meditate more on an idea or desire to create before actually doing it.
IN BETWEEN CONCEPT THAT CONNECTS THE MAGICIAN TO THE HIGH PRIESTESS: The Hero/Fool contemplates ritual, how to work with ideas and imagine them as real.
2. The High Priestess
What does the High Priestess have to tell us? What does it mean to be the High Priestess?
Moving from darkness into light (black pillar-white pillar). Finding answers from within. Tapping into your intuition. The understanding that there is a time for everything; a time for answers and a time for mystery (hence the Torah being half covered, half seen, in the middle card), and being open and receptive for whatever time is Divine Time. The Pomegranates in the background have deep symbolism. They have a thick outer shell and are really hard to open, but once you do the work to open them, there is a wealth of fruit inside. An over-abundance of fruit. Things need to ripen in their own time; Fruit, people, lessons, situations, skills, experience, etc. Be open and patient for what you are allowed to know, what you are ready to receive and when. When the time is right you can bring your idea into reality.
IN BETWEEN CONCEPT THAT CONNECTS THE HIGH PRIESTESS TO THE EMPRESS: The Hero/Fool is on the brink of emergence and growth, ready to be creative and to create.