danica wrote:- There are 8 nails above his head! … suggesting penetration to the sphere of thought, intellect, linking it to that of intuition; it's the Higher that penetrates, that is active, but the lower has to be susceptible to it, or nothing happens (the Word falling on deaf ear); hence - the need for the training, Systems of Initiation.
Not to denigrate your thoughts or understanding of the card in the least, but Crowley writes in the Book of Thoth that there are nine nails, and this number is representative of the fact that the Moon is Exalted in the sign of Taurus. This doesn't invalidate your experience I just thought you might like clarification about the Atu.
Some notes from my meditations today:
Tarot Meditation: 1.21.14 8:09-8:29 A.M.
"Perseverance brings sublime success." [From the I Ching. First thing that came to mind.] The Hierophant wears a look of bliss: the serene rapture of the Bull. The Bull is strong, determined--Taurus is the House of Venus, and the Moon is exalted therein. Love and austerity combine to form the basis of Initiation. A secret smile; bearer of Mystery. The triple wand: revolution of the Aeons. Also the triune God IAO. Taurus: only through labor, work, and industry is Initiation to be accomplished. "Let the woman be girt with a sword..." The Hierophant understands the modes of operation of the Elements. Chokmah to Chesed: the Will of Heaven transmitted to the Manifest King--the Hierophant intercedes for the King and makes known to man the Will of the Gods.
Tarot Meditation: 1.21.14 9:31-9:48 P.M.
The Hierophant forms the compliment to the High Priestess (the card might as well be called the High Priest; the paths run parallel.) Nail: a tool by which something is fixed. The nail pierces; runs through. There is a woman at the bottom of the card: the Scarlet Woman, Babalon. She holds a sword: in the present Aeon no longer is woman a mere plaything for man: the Feminine element will balance itself to the Masculine over the course of this Aeon. This may, paradoxically, occur through militant means (obviously there will be more bloodshed as the course of history advances, as the Mascluline, Paternal current of the Dying God expends itself in a fury of bloodshed [I see a correlation to the preceding card, Aries.]--at any rate, these are mere speculations.)
The four Kerubs: the High Priest sits enthroned upon a Bull. There is a definite Phallic influence, i.e. the Legends of Apis--but yet Venus and Luna rule/are exalted in the sign of Taurus. The Hierophant represents material authority in a Paternal sense, yet this Paternal energy is balanced by the pure love of Venus and the austere devotion of Luna. Crowley notes, "There is a distinctly sadistic aspect to this card..."
Crowley notes himself that it has to be seen how the Aeon progresses in order to comprehend the significance of the symbols he incorportated in this card. Here's the quote:
"It is impossible at the present time to explain this card thoroughly, for only the course of events can show how the new current of initiation will work out."
So I can't help but speculate...
My mind is a mess at the moment with preoccupations, so I'll leave it at that ; see below.