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Alchemy and Kabbalah in the Tarot: Arcanum 21

Arcanum 21


Let us now study the Twenty-first Arcanum of the Tarot. The hieroglyphic of this Arcanum is the Fool.

When examining this Arcanum, we perceive a wretched Fool with a shoulder bag on a stick (within which he carries all of his absurdities and vices) and who as a rootless wanderer goes wandering aimlessly with no course or objective. His clothes in disarray leave his sexual organs exposed and a tiger cat, which is following him, bites him incessantly and he does not try to defend himself. So, sensitivity is found represented in this Arcanum: the flesh, the material life.

We can also represent this Arcanum with the inverted flaming star. Every initiate that allows himself to fall is indeed the Fool of the Tarot. As a matter of fact, when the alchemist spills the cup of Hermes, he is converted into the Fool of the Tarot.

It is necessary to annihilate desire if we want to avoid the danger of falling. Many Masters who swallowed soil (many Resurrected Masters) fell and converted themselves into the Fool of the Twenty-first Arcanum of the Tarot. It is enough to remember Zanoni during the French Revolution; he was a Resurrected Master, and nonetheless he allowed himself to fall by falling in love with a female chorister from Naples. Zanoni died by the guillotine after having lived with the same physical body for thousands of years.

Whosoever wants to annihilate desire must discover its causes. The causes of desire are found in sensations. We live in a world of sensations and we need to comprehend them.

There are five types of sensations:

  1. Visual sensations
  2. Auditory sensations
  3. Smell sensations
  4. Taste sensations
  5. Touch sensations

The five special types of sensations transform themselves into desire. Therefore, the causes of desire are found within sensations.

We must not condemn sensations, nor must we justify them. We need to profoundly comprehend them.

A pornographic image strikes the senses and then passes to the mind. The outcome of this perception is a sexual sensation that is soon transformed into animal desire. After passing through the sense of hearing and through the cerebral center of sensations, a vulgar morbid type of song is converted into sexual desire. We see a luxurious car, we sense it and thereafter we desire it.

We taste a delicious cup of liqueur, we perceive its odor with our sense of smell and feel its delicious sensations, and thereafter we desire to drink more and more until we become inebriated. Thus, smell and taste turn us into gluttons and drunkards.

The sense of touch places itself under the service of all of our desires; thus this is how the “I” receives pleasure from amidst the vices and wanders like the Fool of the Tarot from life to life with his bag (within which he carries all of his vices and absurdities) on his shoulders.

Whosoever wants to annihilate desire, first of all, needs to intellectually analyze the sensations and thereafter profoundly comprehend them. It is impossible to profoundly comprehend the contextual concept enclosed within a sensation with the mere intellect, since the intellect is just a small fraction of the mind.

Therefore, if we want to comprehend the entire substantial context of a certain sensation (of any type) we then indispensably need the technique of internal meditation, because it is urgent to profoundly comprehend the “I” in all of the levels of the mind.

The mind has many layers, subconscious and unconscious levels which are normally unknown to humans. Many individuals, who have achieved absolute chastity here in the physical world, become terrible fornicators in other levels and profundities of the mind when they are submitted to difficult ordeals in the internal worlds. Great anchorites and hermit saints discovered with horror that the Fool of the Tarot continued alive in other more profound levels of their understanding. Indeed, only by comprehending the sensations in all the creases of the mind can we annihilate desire and kill the Fool of the Tarot (who hides himself within all of those creases of our mind).

It is necessary for our students to learn how to see and hear without translating.

When a man perceives the beautiful figure of a woman and commits the error of translating that perception into the language of his sexual desires, then the outcome is sexual desire; this type of desire, even when it is forgotten, continues living internally in other unconscious levels of the mind. Thus, this is how the “I” incessantly fornicates in the internal worlds. Therefore, it is important to learn how to see without translating, to see without judging. It is indispensable to see, hear, taste, smell, and touch with creative comprehension. Thus, just like this, we can annihilate the causes of desire. Indeed the tree of desire has roots that we must study and profoundly comprehend.

Upright perception and creative comprehension annihilate the causes of desire; this is how the mind escapes from the bottle of desire and is elevated unto the superior worlds, then the awakening of the consciousness arrives.

Normally, the mind is found bottled up within the bottle of desire; thus, it is indispensable to take the mind out of the bottle if indeed what we want is the awakening of the consciousness. To awaken the consciousness is impossible without taking the mind out of its bottled up condition.

We constantly hear complaints from many students who suffer because during the slumber of their physical bodies they live unconscious within the superior worlds. Many of them have performed esoteric practices in order to achieve Astral projection, yet they do not succeed. When we study the life of these whiners, we discover within them the Fool of the Tarot; these people are full of desires.

We kill desire only by comprehending sensations. Only by annihilating desire can the mind that is normally bottled up within desire be liberated. The awakening of the consciousness is produced only by liberating the mind from desire.

The Fool of the Tarot is the psychological “I”, “the myself,” the reincorporating ego.

If we want to end the causes of desire, then we need to live in a state of constant vigilance. It is urgent to live in a state of alert perception, alert novelty. The “I” is a great book, a book of many volumes and only by means of the technique of internal meditation can we study this book.

When we discover and profoundly comprehend a defect in all of the levels of the mind, then it is completely disintegrated. Each time a defect is disintegrated, something new occupies its place: an esoteric password, a mantra, a cosmic initiation, an esoteric degree, a secret power, etc. Thus, this is how, little by little, we fill ourselves with true wisdom.

The Kabbalistic addition of this Arcanum gives us the following outcome: 2 + 1 = 3. One is the Father (Kether), Two is the Son (Chokmah), Three is the Holy Spirit (Binah): they are the resplendent Dragon of Wisdom within any human being that comes into the world. Anyone who achieves the dissolution of the psychological “I” (the Fool of the Tarot) incarnates his resplendent Dragon of Wisdom. Whosoever incarnates his resplendent Dragon of Wisdom becomes a Spirit of Wisdom.

Speak not in the ears of a fool: for he will despise the wisdom of thy words. - Proverbs 23:9


It is not by isolating ourselves from our fellowmen that we will discover our defects. It is only by means of coexistence that we self-discover ourselves; thus by means of coexisting with others, we surprisingly discover our defects because they flourish and spring forth from within and emerge to the external world by means of our human personality. Thus, in social coexistence, Self-discovery and Self-revelation exist.

When we discover a defect, we must first intellectually analyze it and thereafter comprehend it in all of the inner layers of the mind, by means of the technique of meditation.

It is necessary to focus on the discovered defect and meditate on it with the intention of comprehending it profoundly.

Meditation must be combined with the slumber state; thus, this is how, by means of profound vision, we become cognizant of the defect that we are trying to comprehend. Thus once the defect is dissolved, “something new” arrives to us. It is necessary to be in a state of alert perception and alert novelty during internal meditation.

In order to receive that “something new,” a defect must be replaced by it; a defect must be substituted for it. Thus, this is how the human being becomes truly wise; this is the path of wisdom.


While we are dissolving the Fool of the Twenty-first Arcanum of the Tarot, intuition is being developed within; intuition is the flower of intelligence. Intuition and comprehension replace reasoning and desire, since these are attributes of the “I.” Intuition allows us to penetrate into the past, into the present and into the future. Intuition allows us to penetrate into the deep meaning of all things.

Intuition grants us entrance into the world of the ineffable Gods; any intuitive initiate converts himself into a true prophet.

tarot 21

Practice for the Development of Intuition

It is urgent for the devotee of the Path of the Razor’s Edge to intensify the development of intuition. This faculty resides in the coronary chakra; this chakra shines upon the pineal gland, which is the seat of the soul, the third eye. Modern scientists believe that they know more than the ancient sages from the ancient school of mysteries; thus, they deny all of these esoteric matters related with the pineal gland and take it only to the purely physiological side (with this, pretending to strike the faces of the great hierophants with a white glove). Notwithstanding, the ancient sages from old times never ignore that the pineal gland is a small, reddish-gray cone-shaped tissue located in the posterior part of the brain. The old sages knew very well that the hormone that is secreted by this gland is intimately related with the development of the sexual organs and that after maturity, this gland degenerates into fibered tissues that no longer secrete such a hormone, and then impotence arrives. An exception exists in this process and this is known only by the Gnostics.

Gnostics preserve the activity of their pineal gland and its sexual, functional secretion remains active by means of Sexual Magic throughout their entire life. The pineal gland is the center of the intuitive polyvoyance. Intuition manifests within the heart as presentments; yet, in the pineal gland such presentments are converted into intuitive images.

It is urgent for our devotees to practice the powerful mantra of intuition; this mantra is the following: Triiiinnnnn… prolong the sound of the vowel “I” and of the consonant “N,” it sounds like a bell. [Editor: pronounced as the “ee” in “tree.”]

The student submerged within a perfect meditation with his/her mind in blank, must be inundated by the silence, and then must mentally vocalize the former sacred mantra. This mantra can be chanted as many times as one wishes to do so. After about ten minutes of vocalization, the student must cease vocalizing the mantra and continue with the mind in blank for an indefinite period of time. When the great Silence is inundating us, then the experience of the great Reality comes to us.