The 32nd Path
Look at our map again. The first path up into our Tree of Life is the 32nd Path, which connects Malkuth with Yesod. Simultaneously while we are ‘correcting’ the state of our physical bodies through the intelligent selection of sensible foodstuffs, we will be traversing this initial 32nd path inward. We are very concerned with refining the physical sensations of this physical body. This may be accomplished by visualizing the Vedic Tattva shapes and colors while intoning the corresponding sound vibrations. See TATTVAS in the Glossary Section of this site for a full explanation. Exercises with the Tattvas prepare our consciousness with perceiving the etheric vibrations behind physical phenomena. We will eventually become more aware of 4th dimensional vibratory causes.
The Tree of Life diagram itself is actually a fourth dimensional symbol. It is limited visually with its representation in a two dimensional medium. The 32nd Path traverses inward from Malkuth, not upward, though we commonly refer to elements of the Tree as being above or below other elements. Kether, appearing upper-most, is actually inner-most.
“Visita interiora terrae rectificando invenies occultum lapidem.”
“Visit the interior of the Earth, by rectifying you will find the Hidden Stone.”
The Rosicrucian motto points directly into the 32nd Path, inward, away from Malkuth, toward Yesod.
If Malkuth symbolically represents the alchemical laboratory of our conscious physical body, Yesod, the Foundation, is representative of our ‘personal’ mode of the sub-conscious. The two together form Rebis at the most personal level, if you will. Eventually each mode of the lower consciousness will be working harmoniously to complement the other.
To approach our other half of Rebis (Yesod) the only course open to us is this inwardly 32nd Path. Sepher Yetzirah names this path שכל נעבד, Sakel Neobed, the ‘Administrative Intelligence’. Arthur E. Waite’s commentary from the 32 Paths of Wisdom records: “The thirty-second path is called the Administrative (Assisting) Intelligence, because it directs all the operations of the seven planets, with their divisions, and concurs therein.” This is an obscure reference concerning Hebrew letter Tau (ת) being at the center of the Cube of Space, wherein as a symbol of the Central Self that force directs the three dimensions with six faces of infinite height, depth, north, south, east and west, to which the other six planets – the metals of the alchemists and chakras of the Yogis – are assigned. The powers inherent within Yesod, our personal area of the Great Sub-conscious, 'administers' the seven principal force centers affecting the entire physical vehicle.
The Christ, in the physical Master of Jesus, told us at the Sermon on the Mount: “The meek shall inherit the Earth.” The adjective ‘meek, or humble’ in Hebrew is ענו, onow. Its number, 126, is equal to the adjective נעבד, neobed, ‘administrative, assisting’. Due to this gematria ‘meek’ does not suggest any state of weakness or to be a ‘milk toast’. By its Qabalistic affinity to ‘administering’ the meek are all those of us who seek union with the Central Self by administering, assisting or otherwise attending to our own lower natures, to overcoming all those negative qualities and attributes that prevent us from allowing the Christ to reign through us from the Center, the ‘mark’ of the Cross. For the aspirant living the life, preparing his consciousness for the habitation of the Most High, demonstrates a great deal more courage than the countless masses in blind pursuit of appeasing base appetites. “Taking up thy Cross and following Him daily” can be a very lonely endeavor at times for some of us.
The Tarot Trump assigned the 32nd Path is The World. In that trump notice the cherubic symbols of the fixed signs which again hark back to the four elements: light, water, air and food. The physical pose of the Central Dancer describes the triangle over a cross, itself the symbol of alchemical sulfur, which in turn represents Desire, both universal and personal. To approach the 32nd Path calls for Desire toward Union. The sole method by which we may become Masters or Adepts is to desire it. We must be serious toward this endeavor; and not merely temporarily. To take up this Great Work is a way of life. We will slowly be weaning our way out of the old habit patterns that have kept us in bondage to the illusion.
All genuine spiritual disciplines agree. Even with Celtic Runes the first rune, Mannaz, The Self, begins explanation in the first paragraph:
“The starting point is the self. Its essence is water (Yesod, the sub-conscious). Only clarity,
willingness to change (desire), is effective now. A correct relationship to yourself is primary,
for from it flow all possible right relationships with others and with the Divine.”
More information about Hebrew letter Tau can be found under the Glossary Section of this site. May I also suggest reading Paul Foster Case’s elucidation on letter Tau in his Tarot – A Key to the Wisdom of the Ages, Chapter XXV on the World Tarot Trump. The combination shares abundant information, all of which is very relevant here. Please research letter Tau, and meditate upon it.