26 - The Book
Astrological Symbol Significance
Mercury in the Virgin makes for a tightly wound intellectual spring that focuses on details but often loses sight of the big picture. Virgo bridles Mercury's imagination and cleverness, for better or worse, leading to solutions that are often more complicated than the problems they address. Restrained, dependable perfectionism that courts repression. The kind of orderly, intelligent caution that has sent legions of trusting, doomed governesses upstairs with a candle in the wee hours to see what's making "that noise" at "this hour."
Playing Card Symbol Interpretation
Ten of Diamonds
The ten diamonds indicate perfectionism. Empty success; accomplishment that never quite satisfies. Respect for routine that doesn't seem to provide any release, but eternally hints at a light at the end of the tedious tunnel. Working towards a tomorrow that never arrives.
Artists Personal Symbol
Secret Seal of Solomon
This is a symbol from the Lemegeton which is representative of Solomon's wisdom and his dominion over spirits, holy and un-. I've used it here to indicate the potency and peril of hidden knowledge. It is one thing to uncover hidden information, another to understand, and something else to wield its power. Knowledge requires a mind open enough and strong enough to contain it.
...The Book called to her. After moonrise it woke her, beckoning her down the back staircase to the master's library. In inky darkness, she groped along the shelves tracing the rows of leathery ridges until her fingertips brushed the spine that hummed with uncanny meaning. She tugged the Book's weight free: bronze fretwork gripped the leather, hasps protected the handcut pages within and a carved medallion gleamed in warning. From the hall, a creak: the clock's hands or his? Glancing warily towards the door, she placed the Book where the night glow fell upon the great table. Under her hands, the cover's tracery winked and groaned an invitation, but the clasps held firm as the minutes slipped past. How could she open the Book so that it could speak freely to her?
The Book represents a powerful secret affecting the querent or a mystery in the querent's life. This card indicates that information has gained power in the querent's life by being withheld, by them or from them. Revealing that information could alter the course of events drastically. The scale and scope of impact is indicated by the proximity to the significator. This card indicates the danger and potency of knowledge that's shrouded from sight, held in check or waiting to be tapped. Ignorance is the greatest shadow and the hardest cover to open.
To determine the nature of the secret, look to the surrounding cards. Examples: Next to the Scythe, hidden danger lurks. Next to the Fox, false friends may wish the querent ill. Near to the Key, expect the secret to be revealed, whether or not the revelation is desired.
Secrecy. Mystery. Private information. The unknown. Unspoken words. Strategic silence. Keeping your mouth shut. Untapped knowledge. Hidden depths. The need to dig deeper and pay attention. "Look sharp!". Traditional Keyword: Wishing for greater meaning and importance.
Digital rendering in PhotoImpact based on personal photos and drawings. The book cover is a filtered and repainted snapshot taken when I was living in Vienna and took a daytrip to see a monastic library. The metal fixtures are partially original and partially from a photograph of a monstrance in the same monastery, filtered to match. The woman is based on a scanned drawing from a costume project I completed in college many moons ago. The medallion on book and woman is taken from the Lemegeton, re-rendered as brass and "carved" via PhotoImpact... as were the various symbols.
“Scion” is the Aeclectic handle of an award-winning playwright who has been working with Tarot since he was 13 and in commercial theatre since he was 8. His degree in Religion/Philosophy from Columbia included work towards a Masters… before he came to his senses and entered the loving, respectful, wildly remunerative world of the professional writer. Recently, he’s drunk the KoolAid and begun writing for film companies. He also teaches classes in playwriting and Magick (no, really) at a private school for gifted kids in NYC.
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