The High Priestess

Key 2

The lack of sleep may be catching up to me. 

Sleep is an interesting thing. The body requires it. There are certain processes that only occur during sleep. The liver triggers a toxin flush. Certain hormones trigger recuperative processes. The every day waking state, is a state of hyperactivity. 

There is an saying, “The Magician never sleeps.” Although on the surface this sounds like practitioners of the Western Mystery Traditions are all a bunch of raving insomniacs (only at times!) the deeper meaning behind the saying is that the Magician is always conscious.

Years of practice yield the ability to remain aware in multiple states of consciousness — even deep sleep. Of course, many peope would say that is crazy, but it occurs. Cognitive neuroscientists have been running tests on people who practice meditation. One case in particular was run on long term practitioners of Tibetan Buddhism. The study showed that the long term practioners could enter into and maintain a prolonged state of Gamma brainwave activity. There is also the practice of Yoga Nidra, or “Union with Sleep.” In Yoga Nidra practitioners slowly trains themselves to remain conscious during progressively deeper levels of sleep.

What does all this have to do with the High Priestess card? She represents the transition between two very deep states of consciousness that everyday people only experience in very deep sleep. Think of her as the gateway between theta and delta consciousness — she’s the gatekeeper of deep sleep.

Here’s the rough version of the 2009 High Priestess, and her counterpart from the Ra Horakhty Tarot.


Key 2 of the Tarot

Key 2 of the Tarot



As always, feedback is welcome.



~ by Jonathan Pierce on April 4, 2009.

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