Chosing a significator card with the sidereal zodiac

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Chosing a significator card with the sidereal zodiac

Postby HA 86 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 11:46 am

Are the degrees of the zodiac given for the court cards in The Book of Thoth exclusive to the context of the tropical zodiac? If they are, I am having trouble wrapping my mind around adjusting the degrees Crowley gave in TBoT to the sidereal zodiac. If I am not mistaken April 10th would put me as the Queen of Wands by my tropical sun sign, but my sidereal sun sign would put me as Knight of Cups. In the past I have just used Prince of Cups for myself being a young man with a watery sun sign.
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Re: Chosing a significator card with the sidereal zodiac

Postby Gnosomai Emauton » Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:23 pm

FWIW, I've never used the zodiacal decanates to choose a significator. When I was first introduced to them and given the explanation for why they're rotated 10º (which basically boiled down to: "in order to shake things up a bit"), I found the whole thing a bit suspect. Perhaps there's some deep and intricate secret mathematical reason for them but, if so, I guess I haven't reached that degree yet. After further discovering the historical evidence pointing to ancient use of pentads rather than decanates, I felt even more comfortable in ignoring them.

For me personally, I use your method... suit that is harmonious with the subject's sun sign (or natal chart overall if you happen to know it) and card that suits their maturity and gender (which is not always equal to their age and sex).

At the end of the day, if it's going to work at all, the Tarot must engage in conversation with the mind of the reader. So, as long as your mind is in tune with the reasons behind your choice, you should be fine.
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Re: Chosing a significator card with the sidereal zodiac

Postby Hermitas » Thu Apr 17, 2014 1:36 pm

Hruodberht wrote:Are the degrees of the zodiac given for the court cards in The Book of Thoth exclusive to the context of the tropical zodiac? If they are, I am having trouble wrapping my mind around adjusting the degrees Crowley gave in TBoT to the sidereal zodiac. If I am not mistaken April 10th would put me as the Queen of Wands by my tropical sun sign, but my sidereal sun sign would put me as Knight of Cups. In the past I have just used Prince of Cups for myself being a young man with a watery sun sign.


I'm not familiar with the dates used in The Book of Thoth.

But, just from the construction of the tarot itself,

If you want to use the sidereal dates for the signs, then April 10 would place you in the last decan of Pisces, which is the first decan associated with the Queen of Wands.

If you want to use the tropical dates for the signs, then April 10 would actually just barely place you in the last decan of Aries*, which is the first decan associated with the Prince of Disks.

*Everything over 19 degrees, 59 minutes, and 59 seconds would technically count for the next decan starting at 20, just like the first decan starts at 0 degrees, and there is no such thing as the 30th degree of a sign.

The court cards are shifted 10 degrees from the signs. If they weren't, you'd just have a simple repetition of the signs themselves. Instead, the shift attempts to communicate the idea that the court member is mostly one sign with an almost hidden, unconscious, or "shadowed" element left over from the transition from the previous sign. It makes the characters more complex than the pure intelligences of the signs. It attempts to communicate something of an inner dynamic of the sign-transition personified by them.
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Re: Chosing a significator card with the sidereal zodiac

Postby Gnosomai Emauton » Thu Apr 17, 2014 3:25 pm

Book of Thoth wrote:Choose a card to represent the Querent, using your knowledge or judgment of his character rather than dwelling on his physical characteristics.

I'd say Legis' point about bringing in a bit of the shadow element from the previous sign is good to consider when the card comes up in a reading but, as representations of the querant, one should determine it by nature rather than by specific birthdate. i.e. use the astrology to help interpret the card rather than the other way around. The sidereal zodiac especially doesn't recognize any bleed between the signs at their cusps and 10º is well beyond what even the Tropical would allow.
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