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The Magical Tarot – The Star

September 13, 2013

One Star or Seven?

by Madeline Montalban

Though No. 17 of the Tarot Trumps has many occult mysteries and ceremonies associated with it, this time I want to deal with one of its lesser-known facets, in which it stands for the transference of Life Force.

The name of this Trump, The Star, does not reveal much. In most packs it shows water, or essence, being poured from one vessel into another, while above shines a silver star.

health 2Once it was called the Seven Stars, and had seven small stars, surmounted by a large star over the head of the pourer. Lines from the small stars converged into the rays of the big star, signifying that the forces of all seven stars had been “poured into the one“.

Unfortunately, I haven’t a card from one of the ancient packs to illustrate this article. Instead, I have chosen one of my privately designed cards to illustrate the particular facet of No. 17 which I am going to deal with now.

If the strength of seven stars is poured into one, and the essence of that one transferred from one vial to another, then it must represent the power of transferred knowledge, on the one hand, and of transferred strength on the other.

Transferred knowledge is what happens between teacher and pupil. Transferred strength is what happens between the true healer and the patient.

Which is why the Caduceus of Hermes, ancient symbol of medicine and healing, is used for illustration, since, in No. 17’s fifth mystery, one learns something about the transference of bodily strength through occult means.

Before going further, I must stress that I am not a healer myself, nor can I tell anybody how to become a healer. On balance, very few people indeed are natural healers, and they, according to the occult law, are but channels of a force outside themselves. They act as a transmitting station.

Such healers are born so. Desire to heal cannot give the power, but a little learning can give another ability, which I am about to describe.

First, though, let us put aside any misunderstanding about healing. I am not, in this article, dealing with the subject as such, nor with the born, gifted transmitters I have mentioned before. Rather, I write for that vast army of people who think that because somebody has told them they are healers, then all they have to do is to learn how to do it.

Occultism says of the subject: “The virtue is in the healer from birth”, and that “Transfer of the power by others must lead to transfer of their own bodily strength into the body of the patient.”

That is just what is signified by the pouring of the water from one vessel to another in Trump No. 17. The transference of one’s own essence, or life force, into the body of another.

In the New Testament, when the sick woman touched the garments of Christ, he “felt that virtue had gone from him”, and turned round and saw her.

The word “virtue” in this context, means “power-essence-life force”, and He felt it go from Him. He was the kind of healer who gave His own bodily strength to heal others, and that is why, comparatively speaking, he healed very few people indeed, compared with the number he taught. He was on earth in that incarnation as a teacher and example. He was to die for humanity, not to live for them as a working healer.

So He was of the second line of healers, those who heal others by giving of their own strength, which means, in effect, by taking into themselves the ills and weaknesses of others and replacing it by their own strength.

Occultism is a philosophy with a basis of extreme practicality, and it says of physical ills that “everybody must have their share, and learn to overcome them, or otherwise learn from them”. It did not ever contribute to the idea that illness was useless. It knew far too well that as the body develops, it can only do so by overcoming weaknesses. Also that, in old age, when the life force wanes gradually, the body has to experience weaknesses of all kinds.

These things were called “natural and necessary”, because, in the first place, overcoming illness builds up resistance, and in the second, nobody can live for ever, but must gradually succumb to the wearing out of their physical body.

So they did not teach healing to all and sundry, but reserved it for the “born transmitters”, the very few who draw their power not out of their own bodies, but from a source above.

So the “born and destined healer” was represented by the One Big Star on the old No. 17 Tarot Trumps, while the secondary healers, those who “did it on their own strength by transferring their own life force”, were represented by the Seven Stars which, in turn, stood for the seven planets known to the ancients.

Concerning this, there is a rather frightening bit of arcana which says: “Where seven stars are clustered together there is misfortune for men.” One can translate that as seven planets all eclipsing each other or, more occultly, as seven different powers battling with each other.

Which accounts, I think, for those devoted nurses, doctors and healers who “fall ill” because they have done it on their own strength. They have poured out sevenfold, and not been able to replace. Unless one is a “born transmitter”, and can replace the force taken out, then the healer, or anybody else who gives his strength to the sick, must become in turn the victim.

One cannot take out from oneself physically, mentally or even spiritually for ever without replacement. This is one of the lessons No. 17 has to teach. That to transfer the vital essence from one vessel to another must mean replacement.

The replacement comes from a spiritual-mental force which for want of a better name is known as love. One must really love humanity to be able to replace the transferred essence. More important still, one must love the patients, and they the healer, for this subtle force to work.

Now, I ask you, is that always possible? Of course it is not. Which is why one encounters those sick people who have devoted themselves to ministering to the sick in one form or another. If healing, or medically treating, somebody out of duty or compassion also “brought blessings” this would not happen.

Can it be that sometimes, by giving of this Life Force, it happens that one takes from another a lesson that must be learned? That one interferes with the patient’s development?

Occultism says so. “Live your own life, and help others to help themselves, but do not rob them of their necessary experiences. Neither rob them of their right to petition the Godhead for relief and mercy, instead of man.”

The sentimentalists may regard that as a hard dictum; but think it over, and you will find it has its points. In the last analysis, we all have our life to live, our lessons to learn from it, and, most important of all, we must learn to cope.
[Prediction, December 1963]

From → tarot

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