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The Golden Dawn or Thoth Method

Golden Dawn Spread

 

 

Difficulty: Complicated

Note: Decks that use reversed cards such as the Rider-Waite do not work well with this spread, which was designed to be read using elemental dignities.

The Golden Dawn spread is best suited for use with the bifrost Tarot and especially the Book of Thoth, as these decks are meant to be read a certain way with the Court cards. Princes and Queens represent actual men and women connected with the matter, while Princesses generally represent ideas; thoughts or opinions, and Knights represent arrival or departure of a matter depending on the direction faced.

In this spread, particular attention should be payed to a card’s exact position in relation to its neighbors. Whether the neighbor cards bear the same energy (suit) determines whether a card is considered well- or ill-dignified. Opposite suits ill-dignify each other, while other suits are considered friendly. Cards of the same suit strengthen each other.

As with other spreads, it is important to count the cards’ tendencies, such as whether there is a lot of one particular suit or number pattern. The patterns will reveal special messages. Lots of Majors indicates higher forces at work, lots of cups suggest strong emotions, etc.

Card #1 represents the querent and the nature of the topic at hand.

Cards #2 & #3 are used in conjunction with #1 to further comprehend the nature of the topic.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your Golden Dawn Reading

 


The Alternate Path
(or Extension of Current Path)
  Your Current Path
 

Queen of Wands

9 of Wands

5 of Wands
 
3 of Disks

3 of Wands

The Aeon
         
    The Querent    
   
8 of Swords

The Sun                 

8 of Cups
   
             
The Psychological Basis   Karma

The Empress

The Hermit

2 of Swords
 
Prince of Cups

4 of Disks

6 of Wands

 

 

This spread is set up to read a certain way with the Court cards. Princes and Queens represent actual men and women connected with the matter, while Princesses generally represent ideas; thoughts or opinions, and Knights represent arrival or departure of a matter depending on the direction faced.

In this spread particular attention should be payed to a card's exact position in relation to its neighbors. Whether the neighbor cards bear the same energy (suit) determines whether a card is considered well- or ill-dignified. Opposite suits ill-dignify each other, while other suits are considered friendly. Cards of the same suit strengthen each other.

Also it is important to count the cards' tendencies, such as whether there is a lot of one particular suit or number pattern. Patterns reveal special messages. Lots of trumps means higher forces at work, lots of cups means strong emotions, etc.

 

 

 

The Querent

Cards represent the querent and the nature of the topic at hand. The first card (in the center of the spread) represents the very core of the matter, and the other 2 cards around it are added to it in order to further comprehend the nature of the topic.

 

 

The Sun

The Sun

Give forth thy light to all without doubt; the clouds and shadows are no matter for thee. Make Speech and Silence, Energy and Stillness, twin forms of thy play.

Glory, gain, riches, triumph, pleasure, frankness, truth, shame-lessness, arrogance, vanity, manifestation, recovery from sickness, but sometimes sudden death.

 

 

 

8 of Swords

Jupiter in Gemini - Interference

The number Eight, Hod, here signifies lack of persistence in matters of the intellect and of contest. Good fortune, however, attends even these weakened efforts, thanks to the influence of Jupiter in Gemini, ruling the Decan. Yet the Will is constantly thwarted by accidental interference.

The centre of the card is occupied by two long Swords pointed downward. These are crossed by six small swords, three on each side. They remind one of weapons peculiar to their countries or their cults; we see here the Kriss, the Kukri, the Scramasax, the Dagger, the Machete and the Yataghan.

 

 

 

8 of Cups

Saturn in Pisces - Indolence

Lotuses droop for lack of sun and rain, and the soil is poison to them; only two of the stems show blossoms at all. The cups are shallow, old and broken. They are arranged in three rows; of these the upper row of three is quite empty. Water trickles from the two flowers into the two central cups, and they drip into the two lowest without filling them. The background of the card shows pools, or lagoons, in very extensive country, incapable of cultivation; only disease and miasmatic poison can flourish in those vast Bad Lands. The water is dark and muddy. On the horizon is a pallid, yellowish light, weighed down by leaden clouds of indigo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your Current Path

Cards represent your current path as it would unfold naturally. These cards are read in chronological order from left to right.

 

 

 

3 of Disks

Mars in Capricorn - Works

The influence of Binah in the sphere of Earth shows the material establishment of the idea of the Universe, the determination of its basic form. It is ruled by Mars in Capricornus; he is exalted in that Sign, and therefore at his best. His energy is constructive, like that of the builder or engineer. The card represents a pyramid viewed from above the apex.

This pyramid is situated in the great Sea of Binah in the Night of Time, but the sea is solidified; hence the colours of the background are mottled, a cold thin dark grey with a pattern of indigo and green. The sides of the pyramid have a strong reddish tint, showing the influence of Mars.

 

 

 

3 of Wands

Sun in Aries - Virtue

This card refers to Binah in the suit of Fire, and so represents the establishment of primeval Energy. The Will has been trans mitted to the Mother, who conceives, prepares, and gives birth to, its manifestation. It refers to the Sun in Aries, the Sign in which he is exalted.

The meaning is harmonious, for this is the beginning of Spring. For this reason one sees the wand taking the form of the Lotus in blossom. The Sun has enkindled the Great Mother.

 

 

 

The Aeon

Fire

Be every Act an Act of Love and Worship. Be every Act the Fiat of a God. Be every Act a Source of radiant Glory.

Final decision in respect of the past, new current in respect of the future; always represents the taking of a definite step.

 

 

 

The Alternate Path

Cards represent the alternate path that you could choose to take in lieu of the Current Path. However, if the cards that come up seem to indicate that they go along with the Current Path, these 3 cards should be interpretted not as an Alternate Path, but as a chronological extension of the Current Path (also read from left to right).

 

 

 

Queen of Wands

Aries

The Queen of Wands represents the watery part of Fire, its fluidity and colour. Also, she rules in the Zodiac from the 21st degree of Pisces to the 20th degree of Aries. Her crown is topped with the winged globe and rayed with flame. She is seated upon a throne of flame, ordered into geometrical light by her material power. Beneath the throne the surging flames are steady. She bears a~wand in her left hand; but it is topped with a cone suggestive of the mysteries of Bacchus. She is attended by a couchant leopard upon whose head she lays her hand. Her face expresses the ecstasy of one whose mind is well in-drawn to the mystery borne beneath her bosom.

The characteristics of the Queen are adaptability, persistent energy, calm authority which she knows how to use to enhance her attractiveness. She is kindly and generous, but impatient of opposi tion. She has immense capacity for friendship and for love, but always on her own initiative.

 

 

 

9 of Wands

Moon in Saggitarius - Strength

This card is referred to Yesod, the Foundation; this brings the Energy back into balance. The Nine represents always the fullest development of the Force in its relation with the Forces above it. The Nine may be considered as the best that can be obtained from the type involved, regarded from a practical and material standpoint. This card is also governed by the Moon in Sagittarius; so here is a double influence of the Moon on the Tree of Life. Hence the aphorism "Change is Stability".

The Wands have now become arrows. There are eight of them in the background, and in front of them one master arrow. This has the Moon for its point, and the Sun for the driving Force above it; for the path of Sagittarius on the Tree of Life joins the Sun and Moon. The flames in the card are tenfold, implying that the Energy is directed downwards.

 

 

 

5 of Wands

Saturn in Leo - Strife

This card is referred to Geburah of the suit of Fire. Geburah itself being fiery, it is a purely active force. It is ruled also by Saturn and Leo. Leo shows the element of Fire at its strongest and most balanced. Saturn tends to weigh it down and to embitter it. There is no limit to the scope of this volcanic energy.

The symbol represents the wand of the Chief Adept, showing that the authority is derived from the superiors; were it not so, this card would be thoroughly disastrous. Moreover, there are also two wands of the Second, or Major Adept. They have the head of the Phoenix, which gives the idea of destruction (or rather purgation) through fire, and the resurrection of the energy from its ashes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Psychological Basis

Cards shed light upon the psychological undertones of the current problem.

 

 

 

The Empress

Venus

This is the Harmony of the Universe, that Love unites the Will to create with the Understanding of that Creation: understand thou thine own Will. Love and let love. Rejoice in every shape of love, and get thy rapture and thy nourishment thereof.

Love, beauty, happiness, pleasure, success, completion, good fortune, graciousness, elegance, luxury, idleness, dissipation debauchery, friendship, gentleness, delight.

 

 

 

The Hermit

Virgo

Wander alone; bearing the Light and thy Staff. And be the Light so bright that no man seeth thee. Be not moved by aught without or within: keep Silence in all ways.

Illumination from within, secret impulse from within; practical plans derived accordingly. Retirement from participation in current events.

 

 

2 of Swords

Moon in Libra - Peace

The Moon is change, but Nature is peaceful; moreover, Libra represents balance; between them, they regulate the energy of the Swords.

In the card appear two swords crossed; they are united by a blue rose with five petals. This rose represents the influence of the Mother, whose harmonizing influence compounds the latent antagonism native to the suit. The Rose emits white rays, producing a geometrical pattern that emphasizes the equilibrium of the symbol.

 

 

 

Karma

- These cards represent the influences of karma and destiny that are beyond your control. They suggest adapting to this fate.

 

 

 

Prince of Cups

Scorpio

The Prince of Cups represents the airy part of Water. On the one hand, elasticity, volatility, hydrostatic equilibrium; on the other hand, the catalytic faculty and the energy of steam. He is a warrior partly clad in armour, which seems, however, rather a growth than a covering. His helmet is surmounted by an eagle, and his chariot, which resembles a shell, is also drawn by an eagle. His wings are tenuous, almost of gas. This is a reference to his power of volatilization understood in the spiritual sense. The whole symbolism of this card is exceedingly complicated, for Scorpio is the most mysterious of the Signs, and the manifested portion of it symbolized by the eagle is in reality the least important part of his nature.

The moral characteristics of the person pictured in this card are subtlety, secret violence, and craft. He is intensely secret, an artist in all his ways. On the surface he appears calm and imperturbable, but this is a mask of the most intense passion. He is on the surface susceptible to external influences, but he accepts them only to transmute them to the advantage of his secret designs. He is thus completely without conscience in the ordinary sense of the word, and is therefore usually distrusted by his neighbours. They feel they do not, and can never, understand him. Thus he inspires unreasonable fear. He is in fact perfectly ruthless. He cares intensely for power, wisdom, and his own aims.

 

 

 

4 of Disks

Sun in Capricorn - Power

The Four, Chesed, shows the establishment of the Universe in three dimensions, that is, below the Abyss. The generating idea is exhibited in its full material sense. The card is ruled by the Sun in Capricornus, the Sign in which he is reborn. The disks are very large and solid; the suggestion of the card is that of a fortress. This represents Law and Order, maintained by constant authority and vigilance. The disks themselves are square; revolution is very opposite to the card; and they contain the signs of the Four Ele ments. For all that, they revolve; defence is valid only when violently active.

So far as it appears stationary, it is the "dead centre" of the engineer; and Capricornus is the point at which the Sun "turns again Northward". The background is of deep azure, flecked yellow, suggesting a moat; but beyond this is a pattern of green and indigo to represent the guarded fields whose security is assured by the fortress.

 

 

 

6 of Wands

Jupiter in Leo - Victory

This card represents Tiphareth of the suit of Fire. This shows Energy in completely balanced manifestation. The Five has broken up the closed forces of the Four with revolutionary ardour, but a marriage has taken place between them; and the result is the Son, and the Sun.

The reference is also to Jupiter and Leo, which seems to imply a benediction on the harmony and beauty of this arrangement. It Will be seen that the Three Wands of the Three Adepts are now orderly arranged; and the flames themselves, instead of shooting out in all directions, burn steadily as in lamps. They are nine in number, in reference to Yesod and the Moon. This shows the stabiliza tion of the Energy, and its reception and reflection by the Feminine.

There is no circle to enclose the system. It is self-supporting, like the Sun.