The Fool leaves the past behind. He carries nothing more then his purity, innocence and trust, symbolized by the white rose in his hand. The pattern on his waistcoat contains the colors of all four elements of the tarot, indicating that he is in harmony with all that surround him. His intuition is functioning at its peak. At this moment the fool has the support of the universe to make this jump into the unknown. Adventures await him in the river of life.
The card indicates that if you trust your intuition right now, your feeling of the 'rightness' of things you cannot go wrong. Your actions may appear 'foolish' to others, or even to yourself, if you try to analyze them with the rational mind. But the 'zero' place occupied by the Fool is the numberless number where trust and innocence are the guides, not skepticism and past experience.
A Fool is one who goes on trusting; a fool is one who goes on trusting against all his experience. You deceive him, and he trusts you; and you deceive him again, and he trust you; and you deceive him again, and he trusts you. Then you will say that he is a fool, he does not learn. His trust is tremendous; his trust is so pure that nobody can corrupt it.
Be a fool in the Taoist sense, in the Zen sense. Don't try to create a wall of knowledge around you. What so ever experience comes to you, let it happen, and then go on dropping it. Go on cleaning your mind continuously; go on dying to the past so you remain in the present, here-now, as if just born, just a babe. In the beginning it is going to be very difficult. The world will start taking advantage of you ... let them. They are poor fellows. Even if you are cheated and deceived and robbed, let it happen, because that which is really yours cannot be robbed from you, that which is really yours nobody can steal from you. And each time you don't allow situations to corrupt you, that opportunity will become an integration inside. Your soul will become more crystallized.
MAJOR ARCANA I
This naked figure sits on the lotus of perfection, gazing at the beauty of the night sky. She knows that 'home' is not a physical place in the outside world, but an inner quality of relaxation and acceptance. The stars, the rocks, the trees the flower, fish and birds - all are our brothers and sisters in this dance of life. We human beings tend to forget this, as we pursue our own private agendas and believe we must fight to get what we need. But ultimately, our sense of separateness is just an illusion, manufactured by the narrow preoccupations of the mind. Now is the time to look at whether you are allowing yourself to receive the extraordinary gift of feeling 'at home' wherever you are. If you are, be sure to take time to savor it so it can deepen and remain with you. If on the other hand you've been feeling like the world is out to get you, it's time to take a break. Go outside tonight and look at the stars.
You are not accidental. Existence needs you. Without you something will be missing in existence and nobody can replace it. That's what gives you dignity, that the whole existence will miss you. The stars and sun and moon, the trees and birds and earth - everything in the universe will feel a small place is vacant which cannot be filled by anybody except you. This gives you a tremendous joy, a fulfillment that you are related to existence, and existence cares for you. Once you are clean and clear, you can see tremendous love falling on you from all dimensions.
MAJOR ARCANA II
The Inner Voice speaks not in words but in the wordless language of the heart. It is like an oracle who only speaks the truth. If it had a face, it would be like the face at the center of this card - alert, watchful, and able to accept both the dark and the light, symbolized by the two hands holding the crystal. The crystal itself represents the clarity that comes from transcending all dualities. The Inner Voice can also be playful, as it dives deep into the emotions and emerges again to soar towards the sky, like two dolphins dancing in the waters of life. It is connected with the cosmos, through the crescent-moon crown, and the earth, as represented by the green leaves on the figure's kimono.
There are times in our lives when too many voices seem to be pulling us this way and that. Our very confusion in such situations is a reminder to seek silence and centering within. Only then are we able to hear our truth.
If you have found your truth within yourself there is nothing more in this whole existence to find. Truth is functioning through you. When you open your eyes, it is truth opening his eyes. When you close your eyes, it is truth who is closing its eyes.
This is a tremendous meditation. If you can simply understand the device, you don't have to do anything; whatever you are doing is being done by truth. You are walking, it is truth; you are sleeping, it is truth resting; you are speaking, it is truth speaking; you are silent, it is truth that is silent.
This is one of the most simple mediation techniques. Slowly, slowly everything settles by this simple formula, and then there is no need for the technique. When you are cured, you throw away the meditation, you throw away the medicine. Then you live as truth - alive, radiant, contented, blissful, a song unto yourself. Your whole life becomes a prayer without any words, or better to say a prayerfulness a grace, a beauty which does not belong to our mundane world, a ray of light coming from the beyond into the darkness of our world.
MAJOR ARCANA IV
The powerful and authoritative figure in this card is clearly the master of his own destiny. On his shoulder is an emblem of the sun, and the torch he holds in his right hand symbolizes the light of his own hard-won truth. Whether he is wealthy or poor, the Rebel is really an emperor because he has broken the chains of society's repressive conditioning and opinions. He has formed himself by embracing all the colors of the rainbow, emerging from the dark and formless roots of his unconscious past and growing wings to fly into the sky. His very way of being is rebellious - not because he is fighting against anybody or anything, but because he has discovered his own true nature and is determined to live in accordance with it. The eagle is his spirit animal, a messenger between earth and sky. The Rebel challenges us to be courageous enough to take responsibility for who we are and to live our truth.
People are afraid, very much afraid of those who know themselves. They have a certain power, a certain aura and a certain magnetism, a charisma that can take out alive, you people from the traditional imprisonment ...
The enlightened man cannot be enslaved - that is the difficulty - and he cannot be imprisoned ... Every genius who has known something of the inner is bound to be a little difficult to be absorbed; he is going to be an upsetting force. The masses don't want to be disturbed, even thought they may be in misery; they are in misery, but they are accustomed to the misery. And anybody who is not miserable looks like a stranger.
The enlightened man is the greatest stranger in the world; he does not seem to belong to anybody. No organization confines him, no community no society, no nation.
MAJOR ARCANA V
Being 'in the gap' can be disorienting and even scary. Nothing to hold on to, no sense of direction, not even a hint of what choices and possibilities might lie ahead. But it was just this state of pure potential that existed before the universe was created. All you can do now is to relax into this nothingness ... fall into this silence between the words ... watch this gap between the outgoing and incoming breath. And treasure each empty moment of the experience. Something sacred is about to be born.
Buddha has chosen one of the really very potential words - shunyata. The English word, the English equivalent, 'nothingness', is not such a beautiful word. That's why I would like to make it 'no-thingness' - because the nothing is not just nothing, it is all. It is vibrant with all possibilities. It is potential, absolute potential. It is unmanifest yet, but it contains all. In the beginning is nature, in the end it nature, so why in the middle do you make so much fuss? Why, in the middle, becoming so worried, so anxious, so ambitious - why create such despair?
Nothingness to nothingness is the whole journey.
MAJOR ARCANA VI
What we call love is really a whole spectrum of relating, reaching from the earth to the sky. At the most earthy level, love is sexual attraction. Many of us remain stuck there, because our conditioning has burdened our sexuality with all kinds of expectations and repressions. Actually the biggest 'problem' with sexual love is that it never lasts. Only if we accept this fact can we then really celebrate it for what it is - welcome its happening, and say good-bye with gratitude when it's not. Then as we mature, we can begin to experience the love that exists beyond sexuality and honors the unique individuality of the other. We begin to understand that our partner often functions as a mirror, reflecting unseen aspects of our deeper self and supporting us to become whole. This love is based in freedom, not expectation or need. It's wings take us higher and higher towards the universal love that experiences all as one.
MAJOR ARCANA VII
The veil of illusion, or maya, that has been keeping you from perceiving reality as it is, is starting to burn away. The fire is not the heated fire of passion, but the cool flames of awareness. As it burns the veil, the face of a very delicate and childlike buddha becomes visible.
The awareness that is growing in you now is not the result of any conscious 'doing', nor do you need to struggle to make something happen. Any sense you might have had that you've been groping in the dark is dissolving now, or will be dissolving soon. Let yourself settle, and remember that deep inside you are just a witness, eternally silent, aware and unchanged. A channel is now opening from the circumference of activity to that center of witnessing. It will help you to become detached, an a new awareness will lift the veil from your eyes.
Mind can never be intelligent - only no-mind is intelligent. Only no-mind is original and radical. Only no-mind is revolutionary - revolution is action. This mind gives you a sort of stupor. Burdened by the memories of the past, burdened by the projections of the future, you go on living - at the minimum. You don't live at the maximum. Your flame remains very dim. Once you start dropping thoughts, the dust that you have collected in the past, the flame arises - clean, clear, alive, young. Your whole life becomes a flame, and a flame without any smoke. That is what awareness is.
MAJOR ARCANA IX
When there is no 'significant other' in our lives we can either be lonely, or enjoy the freedom that solitude brings. When we find no support among others for our deeply felt truths, we can either feel isolated and bitter, or celebrate the fact that our vision is strong enough even to survive the powerful human need for the approval of family, friends or colleagues. If you are facing such a situation now, be aware of how you are choosing to view your 'aloneness' and take responsibility for the choice you have made.
The humble figure in this card glows with a light that emanates from within. One of Gautam Buddha's most significant contributions to the spiritual life of humankind was to insist to his disciples, "Be a light unto yourself." Ultimately, each of us must develop within ourselves the capacity to make our way through the darkness without any companions, maps or guide.
When you are alone you are not alone, you are simply lonely - and there is a tremendous difference between loneliness and aloneness. When you are lonely you are thinking of the other, you are missing the other. Loneliness is a negative state. You are feeling that it would have been fetter if the other was there - your friend, your wife, your mother, your beloved, your husband. It would have been good if the other was there, but the other is not.
Loneliness is absence of the other. Aloneness is the presence of oneself. Aloneness is very positive. It is a presence, overflowing presence. You are so full of presence that you can fill the whole universe with your presence and there is no need for anybody.
MAJOR ARCANA X
The symbol in this card is an enormous wheel representing time, fate, karma. Galaxies spin around this constantly moving circle, and the twelve signs of the zodiac appear on the circumference. Just inside the circumference are the eight trigrams of the I Ching, and even closer to the center are the four directions, each illuminated by the energy of lightning. The spinning triangle is at this moment pointed upward, toward the divine, and the Chinese symbol of yin and yang, male and female, creative and receptive, lies at the center.
It has often been said that the only unchanging thing in the world is change itself. Life is continuously changing, evolving, dying and being reborn. All opposites play a part in this vast circular pattern. If you cling to the edge of the wheel you can get dizzy! Move toward the center of the cyclone and relax, knowing that this too will pass.
Back to top