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Sunday, 28 June 2015

Earth of Earth - Princess of Disks

Thoth Tarot
Today I've drawn the Princess of Disks from Aleister Crowley's Thoth Tarot. It's one of my favourite cards from this deck, and apparently I am not alone. In his book Understanding Aleister Crowley's Thoth Tarot, Lon Milo DuQuette writes, 'To be embarrassingly honest, I am most profoundly (and most hopelessly) in love with her. Enlargements of this card adorn the living room walls of many of my colleagues, and it is one of the most frequently reproduced cards of the deck.' DuQuette calls her the ultimate princess -- being earth of earth, she represents the 'highest high and the lowest  low (and everything in between) of all the suits. The 'Malkuth of Malkuths', the 'potential of all possible possibilities, and the key to perpetuating the life of the universe.'

This is just one of the curiosities of the Thoth Tarot, that a low-ranked court card from the minor arcana can be the ultimate of the universe.

She wears a rather Wagnerian head dress with her hair in long braids, and a massive fur cloak that winds from her shoulders and twists into the foreground like an out of control bit of costuming from the Stark section of the 'Game of Thrones' wardrobe barn. She holds a staff or spear in one hand and a disk or shield in the other, which makes her seem even more Wagnerian. For someone who is 'earth of earth', she is decidedly unearthly, apparently floating there amidst trees whose roots hang in mid-air. Whatever she is looking down at is a source of brilliant light, for both she and the trees are lit from below --or is she the source of the light? We can see golden light emanating from the diamond tip of her staff, beaming down into whatever abyss she is peering into.

Let's listen to Paul Hughs-Barlow's thoughts on the Princess of Disks:

Change, change, change -- the cards are always about change. To be honest, I don't know that anything is going to change today. I am going to work today -- yes on a Sunday -- BOO HISS! -- and I have no plans to change anything today or do anything of the apparent magnitude implied by this card!

So we'll just look at it from the point of a view of a lowly tarot card reader. Perhaps this card encourages me to connect deeply with the physical and mundane aspects of life today, earthly life. It is not a day to float disconnected and unaware of my breath as I breathe it, my life as I live it. Today is a day to notice the tactile and the beautiful, the senses and the physical reality of my life and the comforts of home. I'll only be at work for four hours. The rest of the day is mine.


  1. This is also my favorite Thoth card. I bought the Rosetta Tarot based solely on seeing that card. I believe the creator of that deck associates her with Freya, another favorite of mine.

    Thanks for reminding me to spend some time with this compellingly lovely 'ultimate princess'!

  2. I prefer the lowly tarot reader's view, much more practical and grounded, which is what this card is about for me. I often see practising yoga in this card, too :)