THE 12TH PATH

   “Legend has it that The Book of Thoth, a book containing powerful spells and wisdom, was hidden in many boxes, the keys to which were spread throughout ancient Egypt, and legend has it that the mysteries in this lost book found their way into the Tarot, which is now sometimes itself referred to as the ‘Book of Thoth.’ Thoth, the great God of wisdom and magic, as you recall, is associated with the Greek Hermes and the Roman Mercury, so you find Mercury as the planet associated with this path. Thoth, as the heart and tongue of Ra, is a magus associated with the Logos, the Word that begins the process of creation, which is suggested in the image of ‘The Magician,’ the doorway to the twelfth path. The letter Beth, associated with this path, is also the first letter of the bible, suggesting, since it is the second letter of the Hebrew alphabet, that a first cause or prime mover exists before the primal act of creation. Beth means ‘house,’ which suggests form enclosing force, and the twelfth path connects Kether, the source of manifestation, with Binah, the sphere of form, so in this card you see, in one sense, the first act of creation, which is echoed in all other acts of creation, with Kether as the actual source of all creative acts.”
   “So whenever we create, we are like Thoth.”
   “In one sense, yes. The transpersonal spiritual source of your being is the catalyst for all true creation, and the energy of creation is brought down through the planes into the Kingdom through a conscious act of will. Notice that the magician holds up a wand with one hand and points toward the earth with the other, signifying his intention to bring spiritual energy into manifestation. On the table in front of him are the symbols of the four elements, Earth, Water, Air, and Fire, which are reflected in the triplicities of the zodiac. In other words, three astrological signs of the zodiac are Earth signs, three are Water signs, three are Air signs, and three are Fire signs, suggesting that, like Thoth, the magus uses all elemental energies within creation.”
   “So, like Thoth, we begin with an inspiration, come up with a basic idea associated with emotion, and then refine it until we create a concrete form.”
   “Remember the elemental symbols are also associated with the planes of individual being: the spiritual, mental, astral, and physical levels. The mental and physical planes are planes of form. The spiritual and astral planes are planes of force. Thoth combines force with form in all creative endeavors. A created form without inspiration or emotion is inevitably abortive. Powerful ideas and creations spring from inspiration and are manifested through emotion. In other words, all planes are involved in effective acts of creation, as suggested by the four elemental symbols in the card.”
   “Why is the act of creation emphasized so much in this card?”
   “The card reveals the first cosmic act of creation which continues every second, day or night. In other words, on the macrocosmic level, the Source is always creating. On the microcosmic level, the personal level, we are also always creating, whether we want to believe it or not. We are involved in that first, primal act of creation because we carry it on every second with our inspirations, thoughts, emotions, and actions. The trick is to use the power of the will, the power of intention, to align the spirit with the other levels of being in order to create effectively for the highest good. In that way we become co-creators with the Source. If your head battles with your heart, you’re going to have problems. You must become clear about what you want to create, then align all aspects of your being so that your spirit, intellect, and emotions lead to effective action.”
   “What if your actions are effective but they harm people.”
   “That is where karma comes in. We can create a perfect cathedral or a perfect concentration camp. When I say ‘effective action,’ I mean action inspired by the higher knowledge that everything is connected, that we are all part of One thing. If you harm another person, you harm yourself. If you harm the planet, you harm yourself. So you should strive to create for the highest good, as I mentioned.”
   “Is that why the figure eight floats above the magician’s head?”
   “Very good. The lemniscate suggests the knowledge of the infinitude within, which includes the recognition that the infinite energy is all part of One Source.”
   “In the card you see a great magician in control of all energies within himself, like Thoth in control of all of the energies within the cosmos, and he knows that those energies all come from One Source. Like a God, The Magician aligns the creative energies so that there is no conflict within himself or with the Source, bringing the energies down through the planes into manifestation. He wears a headband to suggest that there is sweat involved, and his belt is a snake biting its tail to suggest that he operates with knowledge from the perspective of eternity. Lilies and roses mingle in his garden, suggesting both the purity and beauty of his creations. He is an inspired soul who carries on the first, primal creative act within his own sphere.”

CORRESPONDING COLORS
Atziluth: Yellow.
Briah: Purple.
Yetzirah: Gray.
Assiah: Indigo, flecked with violet.

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Cards associated with Mercury:
Three of Cups (Binah).
Five of Pentacles.
Six of Swords.
Eight of Wands.
Ten of Pentacles.
Cards associated with the third sphere, Binah:
Three of Wands.
Three of Swords.
Three of Pentacles.
Cards associated with the first sphere, Kether:
Ace of Wands.
Ace of Cups.
Ace of Swords.
Ace of Pentacles.