THE 14TH PATH
“On the horizontal path ‘The Empress,’ also known as the ‘Path of Daleth,’ you find the first great polarity of transcendent forces on the Tree of Life, and at the heart of that creative polarity is love. Contained within this path above the abyss are the seeds of manifestation, which are reflected down the Tree, especially in the seventh and tenth sephiras, Netzach and Malkuth. In fact, Venus, the astrological association, and YHVH Tzaboath, the God-name for this path, are exactly the same in Netzach, the seventh sephira. Below the abyss and the veil, in Netzach we find the true origin of multiplicity that manifests in Malkuth, the Kingdom, otherwise known as the physical plane, where all of the forces of the Tree ultimately manifest. In Tiphareth, the sphere above Netzach, the essential individual mind reflects the unity of Kether, the crown of creation. But suddenly in Netzach, we find multiplicity, as if a hand has held up a prism in front of the sun of Tiphareth, revealing the colors of creation.”
“So this path is where we find the first suggestion of sex and gender, right?”
“Yes, and much more. The Hebrew letter Daleth associated with this path reveals a paradox within polarity, suggesting unity within multiplicity, the One within the many. Daleth means ‘door,’ and a door creates both a sense of division and unity. When closed, the door suggests an opposition, an otherness that exists on the other side, which implies separateness. When open, the door allows a movement into that otherness into a sense of unity. The path of Daleth connects Chokmah, the sphere of dynamic, masculine life-force, with Binah, the sphere of feminine form that divides and limits that force. This path certainly suggests sex and gender, but it also contains the first suggestions of all the polarities within the Tree of Life. This path suggests unity within multiplicity, the one and the many, which manifests in different ways below the veil.”
“You mean in our plane, we see the multiplicity but don’t necessarily notice the underlying unity?”
“That’s one way to look at it. Above the veil and the abyss in the transcendent supernal spheres, we find the unity which eventually manifests as multiplicity.”
“Isn’t the first polarity really between Chokmah and Kether, though?”
“Good point. But the ancient literature suggests that Chokmah is like a mirror image of Kether where God first sees Itself. In the literature known as the Yetziric text, Chokmah equals Kether, and the division suggests not polarity and opposition but a Self-awareness. Remember that the intense force in Chokmah emanates Binah, and that the life-force continues in a lightning flash down the Tree, filling all spheres and all levels of being. The life-force changes vibration, setting up polarities as it flows from the spiritual to the physical, but it remains essentially one thing. The sexual act is a manifestation of the life-force, and it does often provide a sense of unity. But a person can be potent on all levels of being, not just the physical level.”
“Is that sense of unity what you mean by ‘love?’ Because I know many people who certainly don’t feel it that often here in this realm.”
“Yes, and that is often the case until you reach the higher consciousness that knows the underlying unity. But love is also a kind of power and illumination. Venus, remember, is married to Mars, and the Martian power and energy flows through Tiphareth, the sphere of equilibrium, before it reaches Netzach. The power of the life-force on this plane is related to sexual energy, but it is also the power to feel and know the illumination of the underlying unity which determines a person’s inner potency. Spiritual, mental, and emotional connections and manifestations of the life-force are no less important than the physical side of things. The more powerful the vibration on all levels and the more intense the sense of unity, the greater the sense of love.”
“Isn’t Venus also associated with beauty?”
“Oh yes, beauty in a special sense. We see the beauty of the blue sky because of all the dust particles in the air, just as we know the beauty of God in all of Its manifestations, which implies that without all of the incredible multiplicity of life, we couldn’t be as aware of the beauty of God within Its unity, and I hate to say it, but humanity has gotten so proficient at destroying the beauty of nature that many people might not even understand that simple idea. That is why it is so important to go out into nature as often as possible. Much of nature has been destroyed, but what is left can still ravish the soul.”
“So Venus symbolizes the natural world?”
“Venus symbolizes the love and beauty that manifests in the natural world and in our individual natures. Venus, or Hathor in Egyptian mythology, is Isis, the great mother, on a lower arc. All Goddesses are one Goddess, and all Gods are one God, operating at different levels. Over thousands of years, our culture has tried to kill the Goddess, which is essentially blaspheme because the feminine is half of the One Source, and humanity consequently has ended up nearly killing the planet. Harming the Earth in that sense is like blaspheming the Source of all life.”
Cashing bowed his head. “Notice how the symbol of Venus can encompass the entire Tree of Life. The circle at the top can include Kether, Chokmah, and Binah, as well as Chesed, Geburah and Tiphareth, the higher spheres. The equal-armed cross at the bottom of the symbol can include Netzach, Hod, Yesod, and Malkuth. All of life is united in that symbol.
“In the card you see a beautiful woman holding up a scepter as she reclines on a cushioned throne, which suggests that she as Isis or Venus rules all of life. On her head is a crown with twelve stars, which suggests the zodiac, and on her neck is a necklace containing seven visible pearls, suggesting the seven planets. Around her is the abundance of nature manifested by the four elements. The yellow sky suggests the element of air, the creek suggests the element of water, the flourishing grain suggests the element of earth, and the bright orange cushion suggests the element of fire and the intensity of sexual energy. The empress suggests the fertility of life in all its forms, at all levels of the cosmos. She is a great, joyful, loving Goddess.”
Atziluth: Emerald green.
Briah: Sky blue.
Yetzirah: Pale spring green.
Assiah: Bright rose, rayed with pale green.
Take the next path.
Cards associated with Venus:
Four of Wands.
Five of Pentacles.
Five of Swords.
Nine of Pentacles.
Cards associated with the third sphere, Binah:
Three of Wands.
Three of Cups.
Three of Swords.
Three of Pentacles.
Cards associated with the second sphere, Chokmah:
Two of Wands.
Two of Cups.
Two of Swords.
Two of Pentacles.