Saturday, November 15, 2014

Archangel Michael - The Chariot VII

Mysteries of Mary Tarot Deck
The Chariot VII

Myths are full of famous chariots.  The god Helios
carries the Sun in his golden, brilliant chariot
across the sky every day.

The Egyptian god Ra, steered the boat of the sun
across the sky and back to the gates of dawn down
the Nile every night.

In the Bhagavad Gita, the god Krishna drove Arjuna's
chariot and gave him illumination.

Another name for The Chariot is Victory
or Willpower.

Archangel Michael is the conqueror of the dragon.
He represents Willpower.
He wields the Sword of Righteousness and represents
the seemingly cold blade of detachment.

The traditional image of the Chariot is that of a chariot
drawn by two horses.  A black horse and a white horse.
The opposites of duality and man's nature.
Here we have Michael, he-who-is-like-God
and the dragon : symbolizing the seeming opposites of duality
and of man's nature : both divine and mortal.
The challenge is to unite these two in oneself
and on the journey of spiritual unfoldment.

When we interpret the religious stories metaphorically,
they have so much more depth and meaning.  When seen
metaphorically they really bring home the potential
that we all possess and they remind us that within each
one of us lives a Being which is larger than life itself.

The dragon is a recurring motif in Christianity and other tales.
In Buddhism we see the image of the goddess Quan Yin riding
on the dragon's back.  In the Vatican museum there are many
many images of winged dragons.  The dragon relates to
the image of the serpent and the winged serpent.

Image from

Students of world myth and its symbolism tell us that
great events in the natural history of the world and humanity,
has become part of the collective unconscious.  These
events are stored as living symbols and images and they
are then appropriated by our legends, traditions, stories
and of course religions.

Historical context illuminates the true meaning
of symbols.  When placed in its historical context,
stories and myths can be understood properly.
This does not detract from their importance nor
their profound psychological and spiritual significance.
In fact, it reveals so much more depth and meaning
which is feared or ignored through superstition and ignorance.

The winged serpent has been a symbol for enlightenment
since ancient times.

Jesus said, "The Pharisees and the scribes have taken the keys of knowledge (gnosis) and hidden them.
They themselves have not entered, nor have they allowed to enter those who wish to.
You, however, be as wise as serpents and as innocent as doves" - (Gospel of Thomas)

Monday, October 20, 2014

Divine Love, the High Priest of the deck - Major Arcana V

Divine Love the High Priest

Traditionally known as The Hierophant or the
High Priest in the Tarot deck.

'Divine Love is the High Priest in the Temple;
the Path is in yourself'

In the Mysteries of Mary 
the innocent self, the Child self, undertakes the
journey of the soul on the path of divine love.

In this altar we see the Infant King of Love
in the role of the High Priest, standing between
two pillars, a nimbus of blue light radiating from
his head; dressed in ceremonial dress
and showing the gesture of blessing.

This is where the inner child or the innocent self leaves the security
of the known mother and father behind and enters
the wider world.  Here the seeker is exposed
to the beliefs and traditions of his and her culture.
It is at this stage of one's journey that one
is confronted with other's belief systems and maybe
also a reality that does not match your own
understanding of it.  This means that you will
have a choice.  You can either shut down and
keep with those who agree with you or you
can open up to an adventure beyond
your imagination.

So you can see that this card shows that you
are entering an initiation.

The High Priest is  traditionally a religious figure.  

One who interprets arcane knowledge and mysteries.
This card depicts an initiation into the deeper Mysteries
of the incarnated self.  Life and its High Priest, Divine Love,
is initiating you into another stage of self-understanding
and self-knowledge. The outer world is but a reflection
of the inner world.  In the soul's journey you will meet
many masters of different skills and different areas
of life. The pressure to be accepted for one's views
and values, can be very seductive and it may seem easier
at times to give up the Inner Voice of the Master Within.

The world may ask of you to
conform to traditional beliefs or to betray your own heart.
But not to fear - all experience serves as compost
for the sacred rose garden within.  All sacrifices
made will lead to the Rose. (more about this idea
later in the deck)
We often have to leave something in order to
know and understand whether it is important
to us or not.

The Master of the self lives in the Temple of Love -
the inner sanctum where Love reigns.
Yours is a royal heart that is sanctuary to a King
and Queen.
Your heart's voice is the High Priest of the Divine King
and Queen of Love.

Divine Love, or Love, with a capital L, is not the
same as our limited experience and expression
of love.  We know love in binding relationships;
we know it in romantic love, filial love and sentiment.
All of these can be wondrous and disastrous
and even at the same time.  But these are not
Divine Love.  The Love of the Divine, the Love that
God has for Her creations, cannot be described or
limited.  Our human mind and nature cannot
fathom such unconditionality.

It is not always easy to see the hand of
Divine Love in one's life as a blessing.
At times the High Priest ushers in great
suffering or many challenges.
Then we are tempted to call these 'curses' or
punishments or the withdrawal of Love.

Wisdom is a skill.  It is embodied living
of these philosophical ideas.  In the beginning
stages of our journey we have to focus on acquiring
many skills;  we have to concentrate on learning
faith and we have to teach the doubting mind
that it can trust the Master or Mistress' Voice

The High Priest of Divine Love is dependent on
the High Priestess, the second card in the
Major Arcana in the Tarot tradition.
She symbolises the One who lives in the
inner sanctum.  She is often depicted with the two
pillars from Solomon's Temple, the one black
and the other white : masculine and feminine.
It also displays our mind's perception and
understanding of duality and how we tend to
see things in black and white.
She is our Intuition and her voice whispers
through the actions of Divine Love.
In the beginning we train our minds to
consider and accept that Divine Love is veiled
by our own perceptions and belief systems.
That all actions in our lives, joyful or painful,
are ushered in by the High Priest of Life, Divine Love.

Listen to the Voice within.
You may be called upon to let go of rigid and inflexible
attitudes.  You may be asked to make a 360 degree
turn in your path. 

You are the Temple of Divine Love and ultimately,
at journey's end you will become the Temple of Wisdom.

A shift in attitude is the practical action
embodying Wisdom.
Instead of fear, practice Acceptance;
replace the word sacrifice with detachment
and a new gateway opens.
Instead of what you call love,
practice Peace and see which world
you enter.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Tarot Deck of the Mysteries of Mary - I The Magician

I The Magician - Sacred Heart of Jesus

I The Magician - Sacred Heart of Jesus

My yoke is easy and my burden is light -
                                                      Matthew xi, 30

The Magician is the first card of the Major Arcana,
after the Zero which can either come before the
I or after the last card.

Many tarot readers and interpreters of these
mysterious cards, link the 22 major arcana
cards to the letters in the Kaballah - mainly
because the two numbers correspond.
In the Tarot decks that do use this correspondence,
this card is Aleph and thus invokes the
Biblical statement I Am the Alpha and the Omega.

In the Rider-White tarot deck
the Magician has the leminiscate above his head
and his tools on the table in front of him.
Here Jesus has the leminiscate in his 
wondrous halo, adorned with roses.
Roses symbolise divine love and perfection.
The five petalled rose symbolise the perfect
human being, or the Self or Divine Soul.
The Rose is also the symbol of the flowering gift
which the self receives upon a sacrifice.
Through the cross to the Rose.

The Sacred Heart is the fifth mystical wound of
the Christ.  I will explain more on this later in the deck.

The Magician is the first arcanum and therefore a very
important one.  If one does not understand nor grasp
this arcanum, you will not know what to do with
the rest that follows.

Here the Magician has the rose, the chalice,
the sword and the holy medal, representing
the traditional pentacle.  These four represent
the four suits of the elements, water, air,
fire and earth.
These four elements are also present in ourselves
in the physical, and as importantly, in the
emotional, mental and spiritual aspects of ourselves.

The miniature scapular of the Carmelites adorn
the one side of this altar card.  This symbolises
that it is necessary to don the garb of the Magician,
to embody the principles and practises of
The Magician, the magi, in order to become
that which you seek.

The Magician represent the archetype of the
Visionary :  the one who through one-pointed focus
can manifest ideals and dreams into the physical
world and make it a reality.
A necessity for a Visionary and for real success
in the material and spiritual world, is the ability
to focus and concentrate the mind.
Both St John of the Cross and St Teresa of Avila
emphasises the need for concentration
for spiritual prayer.  They state that the
power of concentration comes as a result of
moral purification.  The silenced will, the one that
has been brought into alignment with the Higher Will.
can silence the mind's thoughts and desires
in one-pointed concentration.

Here the vision of the Magician is firmly centred
on the Sacred Heart as the cave of
love of the Christ.
The anatomical drawings of the physical heart
in the background, focuses our vision and
understanding on the fact that the human
heart is the seat of Vision as well as the Christ within.
When you see with the Heart instead of with the
physical eyes, you are privy to the world
of the artist and creator.

The Divine Creator creates with unconditional
love and compassion and it is the journey of the
self to clear the mind and overcome its
conditioning of negative beliefs and fears
until it can see in the mirror clearly.

The Magician is the one that can see into
the unconscious mysteries and bring these back
for others to become aware of.

If you are looking for gnosis, for spiritual growth, for inner
peace, for enlightenment, whichever it is, it is necessary
to become the Magician as your first step.
The Magician is the first and the last step in the circular
journey of the Seeker.  The Magician has the power
to access the divine realms and to manifest in the
physical.  The Magician has the power to work miracles.

In the same way, in the story of Jesus, we are told
that He was a magician.  He transformed the consciousness
of mankind and he worked miracles.
The Christ is present in every human being.  The Christ
is the greatest Love principle and has the power to
work miracles and to liberate minds!

next ......... III The Empress : Notre Dame sur le Terre

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mysteries of Mary Tarot Deck - 0 Innocence, St Bernadette

0 Innocence - Saint Bernadette

traditionally The Fool

The innocent Bernadette lived a life of poverty and struggle
with her family in Lourdes.
  Every day she tended the sheep and collected
sticks for kindle for the fire.

She went to a cave where rubbish had collected and it
is here where she had her first of eighteen visions of
the Lady in White.  At first she did not tell anyone,
but when she did tell her mother, she forbade her to
return to the cave.  However, the usually obedient
Bernadette, disobeyed her mother and returned to the

She said the Lady in White shimmered with a great 
light and she had a rosary and yellow roses on her feet.
The Lady asked her to return to the cave for the next fortnight.

Bernadette faced much criticism and even persecution
about her visions.  She was taken in for questioning
by the police many times and great pressure was put on
her to not return to the grotto.

Many felt the power of the Presence of the Lady, but
many others were disbelieving and openly scornful.
However, Bernadette retained a childlike innocence
and implacable faith in her visions and the messages
that she received.

In this card we see the purity and innocent open-heartedness
of the child.  We see someone who sets off on a journey
without consideration of or without any expectation of
hardship and obstacles or even any sense of danger.

Bernadette, like the traditional Fool, is accompanied by
her sheep who represents the herd mentality of human nature :
that part in us that will not break with tradition or set out alone;
the obedient self.  She is surrounded by flowers and greenery
of the forest and ahead of her are magical golden branches
and leaves, indicating that magic and miracles are ahead.

Behind Bernadette is the dark cave in which
she received her many visions.  
She really steps out from the safety
of the world that she had known, into the unknown.
Like the traditional Fool of the tarot deck, she
steps off the cliff without regard for what is below.
 She kneels into the
light that comes from the vision of the Lady in White
in front of her, thus stepping into the light
of a new adventure, a new beginning and indeed
a miraculous new era for humanity and
the message from the Divine Feminine appearing
as the Blessed Mary, the Immaculate Conception.

The rosary draped over Bernadette's hands
symbolize her faith in the words that
she received directly from the Divine.
At the end of the rosary hangs a Lourdes Rose
with an image of the Lady of Lourdes
appearing to Bernadette in the Grotto.
We may not all have visions, but we all do
receive the direct voice of the Divine in our hearts,
and like Bernadette, we are called to leave the
safety and darkness of the grotto behind
and to step into the light of consciousness
and awareness into a journey of self-responsibility
and self-knowledge.

She has a small picnic lunch wrapped in sack
and cloth with her which contains her
simple lunch of an apple and bread and hidden in the packet
is the fragmented porcelain doll.  These dolls are hidden in
many of the cards and they symbolize the imprisoned Self,
the divine Child Within, who is mostly unconscious or bound
by belief systems, traditions, culture and personal fears and
thus kept out of sight.  Here the Divine Child of the Self,
that innocent part that has complete and utter faith in the
goodness of the world that we live in, has a rose perched
on her/his head, similarly to the apple placed on the head
of the boy in the story of William Tell.

As the self moves through the archetypal journey of growth
and liberation, the imprisoned Self is gradually untied and set free
until the very last card of the Major Arcana, XXI Liberation!

Bernadette has a beautiful shimmering nimbus of gold petals
around her head, symbolizing her steadfast faith in her
own direct experience and vision.  Although she is only
at the beginning stage of her journey, she already emanates
strength and commitment, a pre-cursor of what is still
to follow.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Tarot Deck of the Mysteries of Mary

Hettienne Grobler Art - Cloister of the Heart - Rose Queen and Rose Child - Sacred Altars of the Mysteries Tarot Deck -
The Rose Queen

A re-telling of old stories; 
an imagining of sacred stories
transcending religion, dogma and
politics; a re-weaving of tales of wonder and
a new sacred thread is formed as the
Goddess and the Gospel of Love 
merge to tell a most wondrous tale 
of the Kingdom of the Honey Bee within,
of magical gardens filled with the fragrance
of garlands of roses and where
Knights and Princesses come back to life
as we collectively dream of a new mythos,
a new world of possibilities and healing.

The magical tarot deck of the
Mysteries of Mary is being born.

The tarot deck of the Mysteries of Mary 
contains 22 Major Arcana cards
and five suits, based on the five-petalled rose,
symbol of Mary.

I include the four suits based on the 
Mysteries of the Rosary.

The Joyful Mysteries is the
suit of Chalices,
traditionally Cups.

The Glorious Mysteries is
the suit of the Rose, 
traditionally Wands.

The Mysteries of Light
is the suit of Bread and Wine,
traditionally Pentacles.

The Sorrowful Mysteries
is the suit of the Bee,
traditionally Swords

and the fifth suit, which is not
traditionally part of the Tarot,
is the suit of Spirit, the Ether
or Akasha and symbolised
by the Swan.

XX The Sun

King of Roses

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Altar to the Golden Child Within

This graceful little shrine is the Altar of the Divine Inner Child! Your authentic self, beyond all masks and personas. That part of yourself that is true to his/her feelings, express joy and sadness alike, without feeling shame, creative, spontaneous and free from the critical self!

The inner child is the golden, magical child of the Soul. It is the perfect child of the Divine that lives within you : innocent and pure. 

Within ourselves, behind our masks and acquired personalities, we have an authentic
self, the Golden Inner Child.  It is that part of ourselves that feel alive, energetic, creative, free, 
joyful and fulfilled. Through the conditioning process of life, most of us learn to stifle, suppress, 
repress or deny our inner child. When this vital part of us is not nurtured and allowed 
freedom of expression, a false or co-dependent self emerges. 

A great deal of time and effort has been put into creating an acceptable and powerful 
ego and persona.  Indeed, this is necessary for your primary survival and as a way of 
functioning effectively in the world. We need to protect our vulnerable self,
at times hide our true feelings and build up a thick skin.
To communicate skilfully and masterfully; to be part of a community
and to negotiate our way through the many layers of society and its
rules and expectations.

But this sense of power is not authentic, and it will not hold up to stress and stressful situations. 
As long as this acquired ego is based on fear, it does more harm than good.
In fact, the safe place that you have created for yourself, becomes your jail. 
For instance, as you defend against being hurt, you cut yourself 
off from your vulnerability and your real heart feelings. 
Eventually, you cannot feel sadness and pain, but you also cannot feel ecstatic joy either.

The human psyche thus experiences the onslaught of these two powerful opposing forces at all times. 
On the one hand you have your authentic self, whom has only your highest good as a focus. 
The True Self, however, does not adhere to the laws of this world, 
but it adheres to the Divine Law of One.

The ego or projected self, on the other hand, understands that it is the vehicle 
and the instrument to keep your body and mind safe.
It serves your ideas of yourself, your perceived identity, your
personal goals and desires.
So yes, it is not the enemy, but without
the loving and compassionate guidance of the authentic self,
without the unconditional love which is your deepest
Essence, the ego will stifle you and stop the flow of the living waters
of the Soul.

In order to discover what it is that you, as personality, want and expect from life, 
you need to uncover your personal unconscious. This is often termed as shadow work as you uncover all your hidden and suppressed aspects of self. Once you have uncovered your personal unconscious you are able to deal with it. You have the power of choice and free will as to whether you want to keep or discard these suppressed values and feelings. You learn to grow this process using discernment as opposed to judgement and the challenge is to live with the tension of the known as well as the unknown at all times. You cannot eradicate certain aspects of your being and you have to learn to use these to their highest potential. In this part of the journey you decide what it is that you value and you build a strong sense of self which will serve as a powerful and healthy vehicle for the True Self. This work is done on all levels of being, spiritual, mental, emotional and physical. 

As you access aspects of yourself from the personal unconscious, you will access aspects of the collective unconscious. You will uncover the beliefs of your culture, your ancestry, your gender, your faith, and so on. Often we live symbolic sacrificial lives because of keeping an archetype alive in the collective unconscious. Once again, you have the power and choice of freeing yourself from the collective unconscious to the degree that you need or should choose to. At this part of growth, spirit and matter meets. It is to discover what it is that I want (ego as masculine self) and what it is that I want (soul as feminine self). This is where you will truly feel the power of the opposing forces and it is your challenge to find a sense of balance and integration. 

The True Self does not judge. It acts from the premise that all is innocent. It is free of hostility and defensive attitudes and behaviour based on negative experiences of the past. 

The False Self, comprising of the various voices of authority and conditioning, judges everything. The False Self believes in the premise of separation (divide and conquer). 

As the True Self develops through the different stages of the personality and physical self, it becomes stunted at specific ages. Our Inner Child therefore never matures and heals. Unless you become conscious and aware of your own actions and behaviour, you will not realize that you are nursing a wounded inner child. 

The ego will rationalize and justify the behaviour of its wounded inner child, and in fact, many childish behaviour are quite acceptable and, in fact, part of the norm of our society. 

The Real Self feels vibrantly alive – it does not matter whether the feelings are those of guilt, anger, irritation or joy, but it FEELS. When you are in your true self, you are present and aware and you are in the moment. 

One does not have to do anything in order to connect with your Self – it is to allow your true self to emerge and show itself and not to contrive or act in a way of should, ought to or must. 

The journey of wholeness entails entering the dragon’s lair, getting to know its darkness and fears; making friends with the dark feelings and pain. Eventually you will be able to seduce the dragon into becoming tame enough for you to kill it and to retrieve your treasure : your golden magical child.