Th, Tau, ת


       TAU or TAV, ת, transcribed as 'Th' and sometimes 'T,' with numeration 400, means 'mark' or 'cross'. The numeration of the whole letter-name תו is 406, and spelled out in plenitude, תו וו, ThV VV, equals 418. Qabalists assign TAU to the World Tarot Key, and on the Tree Of Life to the thirty-second path connecting the ninth sphere, Yesod (Vital Soul or Automatic Consciousness) to the tenth sphere, Malkuth, the Kingdom (Sensation or Body). The thirty-second path is titled שכל נעבד, Saykel Neobed, the 'Administrative Intelligence' in Sepher Yetzirah because it “directs and associates in all their operations the seven planets, even all of them in their own due courses,” so Dr. A.E. Waite comments on the 32nd Path.


       Two attributions, planet Saturn and Earth (Lead), are assigned to this path. Earth here is understood as the physical body in which the Saturn Chakra is the primary and lowermost force center. Saturn, and its association with the third sphere, Binah, is the power within Neshamah (the Divine Oversoul) which makes bodies by shakti power. The power finitizes, compacts and makes concrete the energy 'stuff,' Limitless Light. It is also the center in which Kundalini Power lay coiled, ready to awaken and liberate the entrapped soul. In many ways this path is the most important for any aspirant seeking liberation from dense matter, and striving for reunion with the Christ Consciousness (Tiphareth).

       The 'mark' is the 'cross' we take up daily and hang from the Central Self. Where do we find the cross and the Self? It is clearly displayed on the chest of the High Priestess, herself being the pictorial symbol of sub-consciousness. We go directly inward. This is also illustrated on the Tree of Life where the 32nd Path and Tau separates the lower self in Malkuth with subconsciousness in Yesod. "Take up Thy Cross and follow Me."


       Since TAU is assigned the last, 32nd path on the Tree, it is the first traversed upward and inward on the Return Road. That road is inward via meditation. When aspiration matures into desirous return, the first chakra to be stimulated is the Muladhara Chakra (the Saturn Center and the metal Lead). The centers following are then stimulated from here, as hinted by the quotation from Sepher Yetzirah; “directs and associates in all their operations the seven planets," each in its own time as purified subconsciousness releases the Serpent Fire. In the Cube of Space Saturn and TAU are placed at the center-point, perpendicular to the six planetary faces and directions. Coordinates of fire, water and air (modes of Prima Materia) form axes outward from this central point of 'administration.' The Center Cross of TAU is the Cross we take up daily and the True Cross upon which the man, Jesus, ultimately surrendered. At length, when the 'seek' is over, it is from this point within where the King rules from His Throne. The separative, imbecilic, child personality that has hindered our growth all along the path of return is finally absorbed by Him, 'Saturn devouring His children.' Figure XIII in The Book Of Lambspring accompanies this short text:

"My Son, I was dead without thee, and lived in great danger of my life. I revive at thy return, and it fills my breast with joy. But when the Son entered the Father's house, the Father took him into his heart, and swallowed him out of excessive joy, and that with his own mouth."1


       That mouth is PEH, פ, the Tower Tarot Key, for enlightenment is a Lightning Flash of Consuming Fire from the mouth of God; thus the poet's lamentation in Cant. 1:2: “Let Him kiss me with kisses from His Mouth.”

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1 Delphinas, Nicholas Barnaud, The Book Of Lambspring. Edmonds, WA: Alchemical Press, 1986, pg. 30.