The Martyr- Symbolic Analysis

Posted on July 17, 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

The Martyr


Arcanum 14

Key Observations

  • The male character represents the conscious and creative use of intelligent energy.
  • His body is bent in the shape of a crux ansata.
  • The coins spill out from above him through his bound hands. Perhaps the coins represent the work accomplished in life through incarnations in a body. They could also relate to the talents from the parable of talents. He surrenders them effortlessly.
  • The world is upside down for the significator of the body. He is suspended in mid air, bound only by his left foot which is tethered to the beam. Both feet point to the left corner.  He is caged in three dimensional reality, a living box.
  • The beam connects the two trunks of the living tree
  • Grapevines (from the cloak of the high priestess?)  wind around the trunks of the living tree and hang suspended from either side.

“The Twelfth Arcanum of the Tarot represents the Great Work. On this card, we see a man that hangs from one foot. The hands of this man are tied in such a way that they form an apex of an inverted triangle; with his legs, he forms a cross that is over the triangle (over the rest of his body). The objective of the entire work is to acquire the soul, in other words, to attain the amalgamation of the cross with the triangle. This is the Great Work. The Twelfth Card of the Tarot is Sexual Alchemy. The Cross-Man must join the Triangle-Spirit by means of the sexual fire.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              –


The parable of talents

The parable in Matthew 25:14-30 tells of a master who was leaving his home to travel, and before going entrusted his property to his servants (property worth 8 talents, where a talent was a large unit of money, as discussed below). One servant receives five talents, the second two talents, and the third one talent, according to their respective ability

Returning after a long absence, the master asks his servants for an accounting. The first two servants explain that they have each put their money to work and doubled the value of the property they were entrusted with, and so they are each rewarded:

His lord said to him, “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a few things, I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.”– Matthew 25:23,World English Bible

The third servant, however, has merely hidden his talent in a hole in the ground, and is punished for laziness:

He also who had received the one talent came and said, “Lord, I knew you that you are a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter. I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the earth. Behold, you have what is yours.”

But his lord answered him, “You wicked and slothful servant. You knew that I reap where I didn’t sow, and gather where I didn’t scatter. You ought therefore to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received back my own with interest. Take away therefore the talent from him, and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has will be given, and he will have abundance, but from him who doesn’t have, even that which he has will be taken away. Throw out the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

– Matthew 25:24–30, World English Bible

From the Esoteric Course of Kabbalah by Samael Aun Weor

We must now study the Twelfth Arcanum of the Tarot. Chinese tradition mentions the Ten Trunks (Shikan) and the twelve branches. It is necessary to know that the seven chakras and the five senses are the Twelve Faculties. The universe emerged from the Chinese Hoel-Tun; this is the primordial chaos. The Ten Trunks and the Twelve Branches emerged from the chaos, which in Alchemy is the Ens Seminis, the Lapis Philosophorum or the Philosophical Stone.

The entire Misterium Mágnum is found enclosed within this Sum Matter.

The Alchemist must extract the Potable Gold from within this Menstrum Universale in order to achieve the blending of the Cross with the Triangle. Before achieving this amalgamation, we do not have a true existence. The four bodies of sin (Physical, Vital, Astral and Mental) are controlled by the Ego.

The Ego, the “I” is not the Divine Being of the Human Being. Indeed, the “I” is the total sum of successive “I”s, for instance: John the drunkard, John the tenor, John the intellectual, John the religious one, John the merchant, John the youth, John the mature one, John the elder, etc… all are a succession of “I”s, a succession of phantoms that inevitably are condemned to death. The “I” does not constitute the whole of what the human being is. John fought in the tavern, John is now a religious one, John is now a bandit; to that end, every person is a dance of Johns, so who is the true John? Therefore, if we do not escape from the fallacy of all of these multiple “I”s, we cannot asseverate that we have a true existence.

Present humans have not incarnated their Immortal Soul (their Divine Being) yet. Thus, from this point of view we can asseverate that present humans have no true existence yet. The annihilation of all of those false and mistakenly called centers of consciousness is only possible by denying oneself.

We are astonished when seeing how so many students of occultism (as if they were Great Masters) attire themselves with tunics and disclose beautiful and sounding names upon themselves, when indeed they do not even have true existence.

It is necessary to annihilate the “I” in order to attain true existence. Do you want to drink? Then do not drink; do you what to smoke? Then do not smoke. Did they strike you right cheek? Then present your left cheek to them. The supreme negation of oneself is found in the coitus. Not to ejaculate the Ens Seminis in the supreme moment is an absolute sacrifice of the “I”; the outcome of such a negation of oneself is the awakening of the Kundalini. The fire burns the evil scoria and in the end it absolutely dissolves the “I”. The fire is the Potable Gold.

Modern key words for the hanged man:

Sacrifice —– Letting go —– Surrendering —– Passivity

Suspension —– Acceptance —– Renunciation —– Patience

New point of view —– Contemplation —– Inner harmony

Conformism —– Nonaction —– Waiting —– Giving up