THE LOVER BECOMES UNITY
Through the Book of Unity, the Hanging Man is freed of his predicament. Male and female natures no longer function as the divergent actions of attraction and repulsion – and they no longer need redemption. They are no longer bound. Instead, holding each other’s symbol, they move in the same direction – and they both face up.
Unity signifies Completion, or completeness. Completeness is Completeness of Being, the working together as One. This is not a tale of “soul mates”, but rather a Book expressing the zenith of unification in the seeming opposites.
Two do not become one, but each is half of the One, the completed whole, and they function in unison or accord; thus “they go the same direction in all things”.
The Moon is all important in this Book. For it is by working with the “pull of the Moon” rather than battling it that Unity is founded. The war within a man is based upon the two sides of his nature battling. It is futile for the conscious to attempt to subjugate the unconscious, for the unconscious – like the Moon – draws out the emotions and instincts despite all efforts. Only in working with the unconscious consciously can the Victorious One be realized. And this is the statement made in the Book of Unity.
The background of the Book is blood red. Blood is the exemplification of man’s state of being. Such phrases as “he is hot blooded”, “she is cold blooded”, are based on instinctual truths. And blood is deeply connected with the phases of the Moon. As the Moon draws the tides, it also affects the blood. It is not without significance that a woman’s menstrual cycle is linked with the lunar cycle, each measuring 28 or 29 days.
At the top of the Book of Unity the four phases of the Moon are pictured: full moon, dark of moon, first quarter moon, last quarter moon in succession. They zig-zag. Those at the top stimulate a man’s consciousness; those at the bottom stimulate the unconscious. Half-moon – the moment in which the conscious is most in harmony with the unconscious – is diagrammed as that very circle divided by a horizon which the male and female figures circumscribe. The female form is the lighted half, the male the darkened. This is another indicator of reversal. But, moving in the same direction, their mutual goal is simply response – response to what the Nameless One reads at each given moment. The movement is forever forward in accord with the words of the scribe. There is no final termination or ultimate goal.
“The lover is never sated, his object ever eludes, his fulfillment is not known, and this is the way of things. From world to world the lover loves onward creating futures. Such a grand creation!” Thus it was written in the notes of the Tarot message.
The former trump was called the Lover. A youth stood in the center of this card with his arms folded protectively across his chest. On either side of him two women tempted him. A dark woman was on his left, a light woman was on his right. The former was profane and sexual; the latter professed sanctity. Above the Lover from the middle of a sun was a blind-folded Eros, or Cupid, with ready bow aimed at his heart. These three surrounding figures revealed that whichever way he turned, the Lover was trapped by his need for an outer experience of Love. Eros would shoot and he would be caught by either one of the opposites, in his own nature and without.
Now the Moon is the ruler of the Book. Man has seemingly arrived at a stage in which he can comprehend and experience both male and female natures residing within himself. Like a fisherman, he can fish from the seas of the unconscious or he can be the fish he hooked on the line of the conscious. By this understanding or alignment, there exists only constant merging and emerging in a single reality.
Within the circle that the two figures surround in the Book of Unity, a horizon is seen, separating ocean and sky. Again these are symbols of the unconscious – the ocean and the conscious – the sky. Bridging ocean and sky are two sea-creatures. These, too, are symbols for the resolved male and female natures, winged fish that live in either domain.
The two ladders on either side of the circle reiterate a parallel concept. They signify that the unconscious can move up into consciousness and that the conscious can equally well descend into unconsciousness.
At the base of the Book are five pictographs.
The sword pointed downwards: One’s constant contact with matter, or the objective world. The letter T.
The five pointed star: perfected man. The letter A.
The ear of corn: the seed which perfected man plants in the depth of the earth. The letter R.
The bird on the back of the turtle: the wedding of that which lives in the air – the conscious – and that which lives in the sea – the unconscious (an actual marriage symbol given to the bride to this day in Japan). The letter O.
Finally, the tree in full flower and fruit: that which grows from moving in the same direction, or Unity. This tree has fruit and flowers simultaneously since the flowers need not be fecunded for the fruit to be born. This is the final T. As the sword moved down, the Tree moves upward and completes a cycle as well as being the first T of a new cycle.
These five symbols spell the word T A R O T, the first four Books and the fifth incorporating the rest.
The signature, T A R O T, on this Book signifies that Unity is the foundation of the Tarot.
And Unity is what the Mother was busy producing. Unity – rather than union – is what produces a new cycle of Being, born as Virgin. And the woman holds the male symbol, the thunder bolt or black wand in her hand, and the male holds the female symbol, the white flower, in his hand. Their hands do not touch, neither do the symbols, but they are very, very close to touching. What the Mother held apart closes in but never forms a complete circle.
This Book exemplifies the commencement of the opening of the circle, the commencement of a new way.