High Priestess – Symbolic Analysis

Posted on April 8, 2011


“…each mind/body/spirit complex shall and should and, indeed, must perceive each archetype, if you use this convenient term, in its own way. Therefore, you may see that precision is not the goal; rather the quality of general concept complex perception is the goal.”- Ra, Session 77



Arcanum 2

Key Observations

  • Female energy, unconscious and intuitive.
  • The main figure sits between the two poles, on what appears to be a more reflective or lighter version of the cubic stone (square shape) of the magician. Remember the cubic stone represents the material world.
  • The veil represents the separation of the conscious mind and the unconscious mind or unmanifested mind.
  • The pillars, black & white are said to represent the poles. I think of the hidden third. Notice that the Priestess sits within a structure in which polarity is an integral and necessary part. The unfed mind has no polarity just as intelligent infinity has none. The nature of the sub-sub-sub-Logos which offers the third-density experience is one of polarity, not by choice but by careful design. 2 You will note also, from the symbol denoting spirit in manifestation upon each pillar, that the One Infinite Creator is no respecter of polarity but offers Itself in full to all.3
    • This figure is immanent, near at hand within all manifestation. The opportunities for the reaching to the Potentiator are numerous. However, of itself the Potentiator does not enter manifestation.
  • The crescent moon is again repeated
  • The crux ansata indicates the sign of life as the spirit enlivening matter.Moreover, it illuminates a concept which is a portion of the archetype which has to do with the continuation of the consciousness which is being potentiated, in incarnation, beyond incarnation.· The robe, in this case, indicating the outer garments of custom,shielding principles of the unconscious mind from the conscious mind.The grapes on the cloth indicating the fertility of the subconscious but also the great protection given by the very character of potentiation. To bear fruit is a protected activity. The protection here depicted as being on the right-hand side but not the left indicating that there is protection for the positive path but not for the negative. An inborn bias exists offering to the seeing eye and listing ear information concerning the choice of the more efficient polarity.

Deeper Meanings: suggestions have been embedded within every image pointing to perspective, functions and relationships each archetype has with polarity, the material world and the other archetypes. Observing the left or right hand or the position of the figure (forward or side facing) are two examples of another layer of symbolism that can be considered. Ex. the right hand may be considered to represent the right-handed path or the “service-to-others” path, while the left hand may be considered the left handed path or “service-to-self”. Facing to the left may suggest that this archetype is naturally focused in the direction of self.

  • The high priestess is the part of our mind that is always watching, observing and reinforcing. From the perspective of the High Priestess, both polarities are equal and structural.
  • The right side of her body is covered, while the left side is bare. Consider how the higher mind might be perceived to the individuals traveling either the path of light or it’s opposite.  How those on the right handed path would feel protected, safe and warm from with the idea that there is a positive force overseeing their conscious efforts, while those on the left handed path might feel a pull to control or dominate their higher-mind, like other things, it would be a powerful force to consider under the submission of the conscious mind or perhaps an egoist mind, as the case may be.
  • The lines in the cubic stone of the magician have changed from diagonal to vertical now, in the dress of the High Priestess and her feet are obscured. Perhaps this points to the definitive nature. The idea of polarity only works because of the veils ability to create the appearance of two where one truly exits. In the light of day it is easier to distinguish the man from his shadow, but in the dark of night, neither can be seen, you must feel them out to know the difference. But in reality there is only the man, the shadow is an illusion and a direct result of the light. It is unavoidable and nothing fear; it need only to be recognized for what it is… a consequence of the veiling process.

“Consider, if you will, the path your life-experience complex has taken. Consider the coincidences and odd circumstances by which one thing flowed to the next. Consider this well. Each entity will receive the opportunity that each needs. This information source-beingness does not have uses in the life-experience complex of each of those among your peoples who seek. Thus the advertisement is general and not designed to indicate the searching out of any particular material, but only to suggest the noumenal aspect of the illusion.” -Ra, Session 8


“Each student may see some other nuance. We, as we have said, did not offer these images with boundaries but only as guidelines intending to aid the adept and to establish the architecture of the deep, or archetypical, portion of the deep mind.”- Ra, Session 91

Modern keywords for the high priestess:

Knowingness – Love – Relationships

Wisdom – Sound judgment – Serenity

Common sense – Intuition

Mystical vision – introspection – otherworldliness