High Priestess

Gimel – the 3rd letter of the Hebrew alphabet is associated with key 2 The High Priestess.  It means ‘camel’.  Camels are the means of transportation through the desert.  When exploring our subconscious world we need  reliable transportation or we will lose our way.

I enjoy getting this Major in a reading or as a one card draw.  She always reminds me that the answer is within my grasp if I stop and listen to my own Inner voice.  Much can be written about the traditional meaning of the symbols found in the High Priestess card.

Many people are not interested in knowing such a vast amount of knowledge as it can become quite complex and difficult to understand.  I think some of the core meanings are good to study so that your insights have a focal point in which to begin.

I’ve studied Qaballah to quite an extensive degree but only in relation to the Tarot cards.  I prefer to keep the learning process as simple as possible.  There needs to be adequate information but not to the point of being mind boggling which you will discover if you ever study the Qaballistic Tree of Life. 

The High Priestess has been making her appearance on a regular basis in some of my own readings.  You know how it is.  Some weeks the same Major keeps coming up.  This means the message or lesson associated with the card needs to studied and understood.

As you may know the Moon rules the High Priestess and from this we get a relationship with the water sign Cancer (ruler-ship).  In the image you can see the moon at the foot of the High Priestess.  It sits in the watery part of her gown.  She holds the partial hidden Torah in her right side with her left hand of receptivity on it. Tradition teaches all that needs to known in written in the Torah teachings.  Memory is linked to this card as it is with the Moon.  All memory is in the subconscious. The Torah is a visual symbol of the subconscious.

So what does all this mean?  I’m sure many of you don’t even think about some of these traditional associations when you see the High Priestess.  You probably connect her to the ‘unknown, or future to be revealed’ key words.

If the High Priestess is the outcome card she isn’t telling you much directly.  It’s not a cut and dry answer.  It could be yes and it could be no.  In cases like this, I like to draw a clarification card in the hopes of receiving further clues.  Sometimes I will just meditate on her and let her speak to me.  In this process,  she is reflecting what I already know but have not recognized consciously or blocked out.

The High Priestess is sending a telepathic message that when the time is right the answer will be acknowledged.


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2 thoughts on “High Priestess

  1. Hi Seaqueen,
    sorry I haven’t responded – Christmas break followed immediately by computer hard drive failure. [BTW I’m not crazy about Facebook. I have other blogs here and there but I rarely post on them.]

    I’m not sure how I feel about the Rider-Waite images, starting with the fact that their author is not even mentioned in the name of the pack, obviously. They seem very Victorian to me, which is to say rather ‘mumbo-jumbo’ish – even the word mumbo-jumbo is Victorian, I think. You know how the Victorians were into table turning, ectoplasm…. And I agree that studying the Qaballah and so on might be considered just as much an act of going deeper into confusion as one of going deeper into clarity. As you would expect, my question would always be: what does the high-priestess represent psychologically?
    Perhaps she represents the assertion that the female side of the psyche also contains wisdom – and this must then be explored as being a characteristically female wisdom, not something which merely copies the male side. In Jung’s Man and his Symbols, there is a discussion, complete with pictures, of the four stages of the female anima, of which the highest is Sapientia. Marie-Louise Von Franz, the author of this section of the book, writes that ‘In the psychic development of modern man, this stage is rarely reached. The Mona Lisa comes nearest to such a wisdom anima.’ Leonardo’s painting is one of the images presented to illustrate this fourth phase, the other being a bust of the Greek goddess of wisdom, Athena (which I can’t find on Google). The high priestess is another attempt to illustrate this wisdom anima, but the portrayal, it seems to me, is largely conceived in terms of what accompanies her, rather than – as in the two images I have just referred to – in terms of what she is. Even the name ‘high priestess’ seems to imply membership of a ritual organization – as if she derives her authority from position, rather than being.
    So all this rather leaves open the question: what does the wisdom anima really represent? I guess the first element is connectedness with the Unconscious. The shaman, as portrayed in Lynn Andrews’ ‘Medicine Woman’ for example, would fit into that category. But for me, this corresponds to ‘The Seer’ in Rainring, and is only one of a number of attributes of the feminine, not the summit of self-realisation as a woman. The nearest we come to this wisdom anima in Rainring is Psyche, who is not in the web version of the cards, but can be seen at http://94stranger.wordpress.com/introduction-to-the-blog/rainring-index/rainring-post-tarot-psychological-cards/. As it happens, I am actually working with the cards themselves on the meaning of this card at the moment. If you’re interested, I’ll let you know what emerges from that, if I ever get finished !
    I seem to have run out of steam! Sorry I haven’t really added anything much, SQ. Anyhow, hope you are well!

  2. Hello 94,

    Good to hear from you. I like what you said about the High Priestess implying membership of a ritual organization. I never viewed her representation in that way, well not consciously, lol. It is a very interesting observation. I know her associations with the Torah fits in perfectly to what you stated.

    The Rainring Seer is an aspect of the High Priestess. The unicorn in the background has various religious connotations and ties in quite nicely with the Torah. The Hebrew translation of ‘unicorn’ is unknown animal and the ‘Torah’ is to some degree the unknown world of the subconscious which can be like an untamed animal if not guided by the ego. Just a thought.

    Regards to Hacina.


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