Tuesday, May 23, 2006


The Emperor (IV) in the Xultun (Mayan) Tarot by Peter Balin

Below is a transcipt of a meditation I did several years ago, that I think illustrates the power of symbols to move and teach us. I always recommend meditating on a deck’s cards in order to develop a personal relationship to the deck's symbols, above and beyond the meanings assigned to them by any accompanying literature.

I should mention that in the Xultun Tarot, the Major Arcana can be laid out to make one large picture, as at one point I talk about it in relationship to the High Priest card. The Resource link at the bottom is to Aeclectic Tarot where you can see more of the cards from this beautiful and unusual deck.


I chose The Emperor card to meditate on tonight because he gives me trouble, this archetypal patriarch with all his stuff hanging around him. Whereas the High Priest seems to have his possessions in proportion, The Emperor is weighed down by them. He almost looks immobilized, imprisoned. His hands look as if hand-cuffed and his feet as if manacled: a prisoner of his materiality. Yet I yearn to redeem him! The jaguar cloud of the High Priest's speech seems to reach him, and he appears to listen to and even look toward the High Priest. This is hopeful. But he needs much softening and lightening up in order to be approachable, at least by me.

On a whim, I turn The Emperor card upside down. The green feathers on his head-dress appear to strain upward now, strain to grow, to be heard or seen. He appears more to hold a necessary heavy burden in the crook of his arms: a load of firewood for the house, or a bunch of toys for his kids, or a wonderful new tree for his wife's garden. He is pausing to catch his breath. It's been a long hard day of building, and at the same time, of trying to keep those green feathers from growing too obvious. They disturb him. Tenderness is not something he is comfortable with. Hard work, logic, deep thinking, yes; but not this tickling at the base of his skull, where he can't quite get a grasp on it. Maybe the wife will give him a good neck rub when he gets home. “

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Please see the top of the sidebar for my background with the Tarot and a recommendation to beginners.

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P.S. The post for today on Roswila’s Dream & Poetry Realm is also about Tarot (link at bottomof this post).

Resource: Sample Cards from Xultun Deck on Aeclectic.Net; overall, this is one of the best Tarot sites I’ve found on the web.

‘til next time, keep seeing things from new angles and enjoying The Tarot,


[aka: Patricia Kelly]

****If you wish to copy or use any of my writing, please email me for permission (under “View my complete profile”)**** SEE ALSO: Roswila’s Dream & Poetry Realm for some articles about Tarot.****



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