Judgement / High Priestess
Postures — standing, facing upward / seated, facing forward
coffins / pillars and veil
Foreground — the angels and nudes / priestess
Fire (Judgement) — the natural, visible force of light and heat
Loud and Active vs. Quiet and Patient
Judgement and The High Priestess share the energy of beginnings, the beginning of an awakening and the beginning of an initiation. And so they also share the finality of endings, since each marks an irrevocable boundary between levels of awareness. The Priestess guards the gate to the last secrets of self and world. Judgement is the door to the beginnings of the secret knowledge of self and world. On the far side of Judgement everything is sound asleep in the dream of the everyday. On the far side of The Priestess everything is wide awake at the end of the final journey.
Judgement listens to the sound of a call so loud that it cannot be ignored. It emerges from the ordinary, stripped of everything it previously held precious and identified with. It begins a brand new life in a world made new by a new awareness, awakened and motivated by a distant energy it hears and obeys but doesn't understand. It finds itself in a state of constant transformation fueled by a steady and unquenchable inner fire.
The High Priestess is mysterious, self-effacing and self-sufficient. Her silence is ancient and perfect. She says nothing and does nothing, but leaves nothing unsaid or undone. She is cool, serene and complete.
Unintegrated and imperfectly realized, Judgement can be deaf to the inner call and heedless of its potential, remaining steadfastly concerned with everyday matters and ordinary pursuits. Nevertheless, it can still be susceptible to visions, ghosts and all sorts of paranormal experiences, with a strong psychic talent and a readiness to believe stories of the super- and supra-natural.
The stubborn denial of Judgement can join forces with the Priestess' certainty that she knows everything. When this happens, they combine as foolish self-confidence alternating with a fear of the unknown, making personal growth a harrowing experience.
Together, they focus on the transcendent rather than on the commonplace. They combine high energy, and a capacity for radical change and impressive growth, with an intuitive awareness of the vastness of the mystery of things. They can be great explorers, willing to plunge into the fertile and frightening unknown and take their chances with it.
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More Birth Card Notes:
Wheel of Fortune / Magician Justice / High Priestess Hanged Man / Empress Death / Emperor Temperance / Hierophant Devil / Lovers Tower / Chariot Star / Strength Moon / Hermit Sun / Wheel / Magician World / Empress
Birth Card icon by Robert M. Place, Copyright The Tarot School.
Card images are from the Universal Waite Tarot Deck, Copyright US Games Inc.