(i) Thoth Fool YouTube Video
A detailed YouTube video on the Thoth Fool can be viewed by clicking on the image below :
(ii) Thoth Fool Introduction
The Thoth Fool is somewhat different to the Fool in the Rider Waite Deck, the latter perhaps more simply representing the emptiness of the card with a numerical value of Zero.It is a glyph of the INFINITE SPIRITUAL POTENTIAL WITHIN MAN.
What the Thoth Fool imagery aims to do is explore the complexity of the zero turning into a 1 (Aleph) and then back again to zero. This card therefore oscillates between the emptiness of the zero, representing the nothingness and the infinite nature of God containing all of the potential of creation, and the 1 or the newness of spring and starting that spiritual journey of rediscovering that infinite contained within the self (finding the macrocosm inside the microcosm).
Perhaps this point is confusing in that the Fool has to tread the spiritual path even though it is inside him anyway (he just does not recognise it). So we have the relationship between the zero and the 1 to explain in this card.
Green Man = the mysterious energy giving birth to new life in the Spring. New life in its highest sense represents being reborn into your spiritual path.
(iii) Rider Waite Fool
(iv) Thoth Fool & The Tree of Life
The Thoth Fool connects the path from Kether (Spirit) to Chockmah (Wisdom) . So this is a path of the Fool pursuing the Spiritual Path through developing and applying wisdom.
Chockmah is the creative force and drive and is masculine. Binah is feminine and receptive of the force of Chockmah.
The Fool has the infinite potential of Kether for ‘all possibilities’ of expression. Will he tread the spiritual path or wont he ? These 2 paths give the Fool the potential to create anything ( the Fool carries the 12 signs of the zodiac in his bag which reminds us of this). As mentioned above Hercules trials all the signs of the zodiac to achieve fulfilment.
(v) Thoth Fool Hebrew Attribution
Aleph = a silent letter unless paired with another letter and so we have the concept of SOUND-LESS-NESS. The breath is silent and yet it sustains life.
It also means OX or OX PLOUGH, with the letter Aleph looking like the plough that is associated with the Ox :
Ox = a beast of the earth and therefore the fool connects the highest (spirit, Kether) with the lowest (Earth, Malkuth). He contains within him therefore everything, being born out of Spirit, and yet lacking worldly experience and depth.
(vi) Thoth Fool Elemental and Astrological Attribution
Associated with AIR = the breath, silence.
Uranus = freedom loving , rebellious ( spiritual path is a rebellion against the norms of society and material living).
(vii) Thoth Fool Symbolism
The Thoth Fool is ANDROGYNOUS so he is not limited by gender. God transcends gender.
Leap = this is a leap into the world and he does so with enthusiasm. It’s a YES to life and its the beginning of the connection to spirit even though he might only Intuit the connection at this stage.
Diamond Crown = Kether the first Sephira on the Tree of Life and Purest. Spirit flowing through the Crown Chakra.
Rainbow = this is the ‘coloured universe’ of form arising out of the purity and formlessness of Kether. The zero becomes the duality.
Background = Yellow with white diamonds = colour of air (yellow) with reflections of Kether (white diamonds)
Fools skin = yellow representing air
Green Clothing = earth creativity.
Gold Shoes = colour of the Sun and the creative light of life.
The sun also rules Tiphareth on the middle pillar of the tree of life just below Kether, so in the Fool we have a lot of POTENTIAL spirituality.
Sun at Fool’s root chakra = creative potential of the genitals, where human consciousness usually resides. This needs to be raised to the purity of the diamond in Kether at the crown chakra and this process represents the Fool’s Spiritual Journey ahead.
3 spirals = the 3 veils of negative existence that reside above the Tree of Life and they form an umbilical cord to his heart chakra linking him with spirit. The spiritual path is ultimately one of the heart and expressing universal love.
The black circle at the bottom is Kether.
Dove, Vulture & Butterfly = all fly towards the Fools Heart:
(a) Dove = descent of spirit into matter 20 rays of light emanate from the dove and 20 = the gematria value of YOD, the same value for the Hebrew root for the word ‘vision’. The dove also represents the hermaphrodite as it is both feminine (representing Venus) and masculine with the rays of Yod emanating forth.
(b) Vulture = represents the Egyptian Mother Goddess MUT :
The name means ‘mother’ and again she is thought to be a hermaphrodite, having the power of both male and female reproduction and therefore a Goddess as she a CREATOR OF ALL THINGS. This had its basis in the notion that there were no male vultures and the female vultures were impregnated by the winds (air).
(c) Butterfly = represents the soul entering the body of the Fool as he takes up his Spiritual Quest. The job of the butterfly is to transform and likewise this is also the quest of the Fool to transform himself, to evolve into a higher state of consciousness as he progresses through the major arcana.
Caduceus crowned with Pine Cone = has a sword blade as a shaft and both are symbols of AIR. The caduceus is associated with MERCURY (thought and communication), sword = suit of swords of the minor arcana also representing air.
Pine Cone = also called a THYRSUS. A thyrsus or thyrsos (Ancient Greek: θύρσος) was a wand or staff of giant fennel (Ferula communis) covered with ivy vines and leaves, sometimes wound with taeniae and always topped with a pine cone:
Pine Cone on top of Staff =
associated with Dionysus (adjacent) as are the grapes. The vine of the grapes wraps around him making a circle around his heart. This represents divine intoxication in spirit. Now we have a vision of the universe of pure joy, love and perfection rather than sorrow and separation.The grapes are associated with the sweetness of this state of bliss.
In this card Crowley suggests that the Fool is more closely associated with Bacchus representing the magical rather than the mystical.
Horns = also associated with Dionysus.
Sack of coins = these are suspended from the grapevine and have astrological symbols inscribed on them. The sun is surrounded by the 6 ancient planets:
Mercury , Moon, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn ?
These are all circled by the 12 signs of the zodiac and so this sack contains all of the LABORS OF HERCULES, or the potential for anything and everything within him. For more on the Labors of Hercules click on the icon adjacent which was written by Alice Bailey.
Flaming Pine Cone = in his left hand and a symbol of his creativity.
Tiger = a symbol of fear and the Fool is ignoring it as he leaps forward on his path.
Cup = in his right hand with the contents pouring forth below. The base of the cup is a pyramid (masculine) and the bowl is receiving and womb like representing the feminine.
The creative fire unites with the cup thus they represent the spark and creation of life. The Fool represents the Spring and the creation of new life. This is a recurring theme as new life = born again spiritually.
FLOWER ARRANGEMENT BELOW FOOL
Rose (Uppermost) = Rose a symbol of Air, white links it to Kether.
Lily (Lower Right) = linked to Saturn which rules Binah, Malkuth and Virgo = all symbolise the purity of Earth.
3 smaller lilies (lower left) = the 3 smaller lilies have 4 petals each, one lily has 5 petals
3 x 4 = 12 + 5 = 17 petals in total. This represents the 16 sub-elements of the court cards + spirit which governs them :
The 4 letters of the tetragrammaton are represented in this card symbolically by :
Yod = the flaming pine cone, rays issuing forth from the Dove
He Primal = the cups
Vav = Rose
He Final = Lilies
Thoth Fool and The Crocodile
The Crocodile is associated with Saturn and KRONOS who devoured his own children as he feared they would overthrow him as king of the gods.
The importance of the croc lies in the Egyptian idea of PARTHENOGENESIS which represents virgin birth similar to MUT and the vulture. It is a type of asexual reproduction in which the offspring develops from unfertilised eggs. It is particularly common in arthropods and rotifers and can be found in some species of fish and amphibians, birds, reptiles, but not mammals.
This is explained in a YouTube video by Paul Hughes Barlow:
Devouring = the mystic would say that his soul is devoured by God.
“Devouring is the equivalent of Initiation.. To initiates the crocodile helps to determine the spiritual meaning of the card as a return to the original characteristic of ZERO. The He final which can revert into the Yod” (p.62-63: Book of Thoth).
Moon Above Crocodile = the moon is a feminine energy, the sun a male energy, Between the two the twins are present representing CREATION and fertility which are associated with the Fool as we have seen above as a recurring theme.
The Twins = represent the Vau and He final which mature to become RAA HOOR KHUIT and HARPOCRATES. These are the same twins that recur in the Lovers and Sun card as we will see later. They mirror the twin serpents in the caduceus.
(viii) Thoth Fool & Universe Tarot Cards
This is the relationship between the everything (Universe) and the nothing (Fool). The Fool contains limitless possibilities and the infinite nature of spirit within. If he completes the spiritual path then he realises that the universe is within him and yet at the same time his essential nature is formless and limitless.
(ix) Thoth Fool & The Spiritual Path
The Fool represents the new initiate and they stand out from the sequence of the other 21 cards of the major arcana.
The Fool has not acted on the path before him yet and has NOT engaged in the spiritual process.
Will the Fool proceed to follow the experiences contained within the 12 signs of the zodiac in his bag and engage in the 21 cards ?
Will he stop along the way or fall back into the world ?
(x) Fool to Magus Transition
The Fool, being associated with the breath, activates the ‘word’ in the Magus. Out of the breath (Fool) comes sound (Magus), and the Magus, ruled by Mercury, is associated with communication and application of the ‘Will’.
The Fool represents the new Spiritual Seeker or a rebirth/renewal of someone taking up their spiritual journey once more or seeing their present path from a fresh open perspective. As can be seen in the diagram of all the Thoth Major Arcana above, the Fool it stands outside the sequence of the other twenty-one cards. They have not yet acted upon the path before them.
The Rider Waite Card shows the person carrying a bag over their shoulder which contains the qualities they need to sort out in their self as well as the tools they need to use on the journey. The person has not worked on these things within their self yet .Similar to what the essence of the card stands for; they represent just their ‘potential’ and as yet remain undeveloped. Will The Fool follow the path ? Will The Fool fall back into the world ? Will The Fool remain immobile at this start point and neither progress nor return into the world ? Or will the Fool engage the Will of the Magus ?
(xi) Thoth Fool Divinatory Meanings
(a) Thoth Fool Upright
Material/practical matters = not very knowledgeable.
Spiritually = not evolved but has potential. An innocence and emptiness to allow spirit to flow through them.
Start of something new/spontaneous.
The beginning of a journey into the unknown which is full of potential for you.
The need to take a leap, not of faith but connected with an inner purpose that the universe will support you in what you need to do.
Open up your life and have faith that you can create what you want.
look upon life as the Fool does and be empty once again as a child.
Wanting to break free of the usual routine of life.
(b) Thoth Fool Reversed
Acting recklessly and not caring about the consequences of ones actions.
Wanting to break free of social norms and routines but you are doing it in a harmful way to you and or others.
Not fulfilling your potential
Lack of seriousness about an issue/life which is harming you.
(xii) Thoth Fool & The Celtic Cross
1 : Heart of the Situation = the need to trust in the process of life and take a leap into something that you care passionately about but with an open mind
2 : Possible obstacle = not trusting in life/yourself/ reckless actions
3 : Unknown influence = need to tap into your intuition more
4 : Past = reckless actions, not living in the moment
5 : Hopes and goals = freedom to express yourself and walk your spiritual path
6 : Future = life may throw up an unexpected chance to fulfil your potential
7 : Self image = carefree, dislike rules, norms (Uranus influence).
8 : How others see you = carefree, dislike rules, norms (Uranus influence).
9 : Guidance & warning = need to engage in life and mature from the fool into something where you can apply your learning.
10 : Overall Outcome = life throws up an unexpected adventure and you have all you need to move with it and fulfill your potential
(xiii) Recommended Videos on the Fool