THE 21ST PATH
“‘The Wheel of Fortune’ connects Netzach, the sphere of Venus, with Chesed, the sphere of Jupiter. This path, also associated with Jupiter, is on the pillar of Mercy, the column on the Tree of Life representing force, and this path is all about the dance of life-force within creation and within you. Jupiter, as you recall, is the great benefic in astrology, and symbolizes the up-building creative power of the Source. Life issues forth in abundance and thrills through all of creation in forms too numerous to measure, but remember that the life-force flows through every level of your being as well, from your divine spark to your bones, or, in other words, from the highest spiritual vibration to the densest physical matter. In the four corners of the card, we see again the symbols of the elements, which are essentially symbols, not of the elements that science currently recognizes, but of the states of manifestation, the spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical levels. Chesed emanates from Binah just as Jupiter was born of Saturn, and it might prove beneficial to compare ‘The World,’ the card of the 32nd path associated with Saturn, with ‘The Wheel of Fortune,’ associated with Jupiter.
“The most obvious similarity is that each card contains the same symbols in each corner, but in ‘The Wheel of Fortune,’ each elemental figure is golden and each one is reading a book. Gold is associated with spirit because it is incorruptible, so this card is showing the beginnings of concrete manifestation, whereas above, the spheres are primarily archetypal or abstract, at least to our way of thinking. As far as the books are concerned, everything that happens on every level is recorded in what might be called ‘The Book of Life,’ or the memory of God, the Akashic Records.
“Another thing is that the dancing woman in ‘The World’ is inside of a round figure, an oval. An oval is an elongated circle, essentially one line that goes around forever. The circle in ‘The Wheel of Fortune,’ though, to me symbolizes transformation, the innumerable transformations within eternity.
“The whole notion of the wheel of fortune, popularized in the middle ages, is important here. In a common version of the image, a king sits at the top and the destitute are at the bottom, but of course the wheel keeps turning, so the symbol suggests inevitable changes of fortune, the vicissitudes of life. You can be a king one moment and a beggar the next, and the wheel just keeps on turning. In esoteric terms, the wheel is suggesting something deeper: each soul throughout its evolution has an abundance of experiences, some good, some bad, and slowly develops until achieving the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel, who is really the daemon or higher self. The symbols on the Wheel evoke the alchemical process of dissolution and regeneration. The symbols of the snake, the God Anubis, and the sphinx also suggest the process of death and rebirth. The snake is associated with the God Set, who murdered Osiris; Anubis is the God of the Dead who helps souls transition to the spirit world; and the Sphinx is associated with Horus, the symbol of the higher self manifested on the material plane, a God conceived by Isis after Osiris was resurrected. Associated also with Jupiter, The Wheel of Fortune, the Sphinx, and the golden symbols of the four elements reveal integration of the psyche, the spiritual harmony, abundance, and magnificence of the higher self.
“There is always the sense, as we move up the Tree, of evolution, of improving until the realization of the Great Work. But there is also a very deep lesson about attachment and desire here. There is nothing wrong with desire because it is an essential aspect of the life-force, but remember that the wheel keeps revolving. You keep realizing one goal and moving on to another, but if you become too attached to any particular result or outcome, you might end up disappointed. In a sense, lusting for a particular result is the worst thing you can do. It is a secret of magick that you should create a thought-form of what you desire, fill it with emotion, and release it into the universe--and then forget about it. If you lust for a result, you will inevitably focus on the lack of what you have, instead of the fulfillment of your desire. Because the universe is always saying ‘yes,’ in other words, if you focus eight hours on what you don’t have, on whatever it is you’re lacking, and only fifteen minutes on what you want, the universe will just continue to give you the lack of what you want, not what you want.
“At the center of the wheel is a symbol of the spirit containing alchemical symbols of transformation. In magick, whatever you desire is ideally based in spiritual principle and manifests down the planes as action or form of some kind in the physical world. At some point, the higher self becomes completely detached from the outcome of desire, becoming an open channel that allows the forces of the Source to manifest for the highest good. More and more, the self becomes refined, until the higher self desires the gold of spiritual principle, instead of the forms of illusion. The higher self knows that spirit will manifest in the most appropriate ways and simply becomes a co-creator with the Source.”
“In the card, you see the wheel revolving around and around and feel the innumerable changes of the world and the soul. The life-force pours down through the planes, manifesting in uncountable ways, from bacteria to angels, the good and the bad helping us to expand and grow larger and more knowledgeable, until we feel the harmony and perfection of the wheel itself. We are like the golden snake of regeneration on the way down the wheel. We are like Anubis, moving from the subconscious to super consciousness. We are like the sphinx at the top of the wheel, containing all of the elements within us. The higher self knows harmony and balance on all levels, the pure, incorruptible gold of spiritual principle.”
Yetzirah: Rich purple.
Assiah: Bright blue, rayed with yellow.
Take the next path.
Cards associated with Jupiter:
Two of Pentacles.
Four of Swords.
Eight of Swords.
Nine of Cups.
Cards associated with the seventh sphere, Netzach:
Seven of Wands.
Seven of Cups.
Seven of Swords.
Seven of Pentacles.
Cards associated with the fourth sphere, Chesed:
Four of Wands.
Four of Cups.
Four of Pentacles.