Thursday, April 23, 2015

Cosmological Map In T-Shirt Formation

Is it April 23? I guess it is, but from the temperature in my apartment you would never know it. It's frikkin freezing.

Anyway that aside, I have been toiling away here on another small leg of the project (mostly because I'm so chilled I can't really work on anything that requires deep thinking or analytic computations) ...

Yup... you guessed it.

The Elthos T-Shirt Store!

Now suppose you are curious what your Zodiac Sign relates to in terms of Tarot Cards ... well, until now, that's actually been something of a difficult question to answer. But for Elthos, after many years of plodding along and thinking about it, drawing correspondences and thinking about it some more, and then doing more research and ... ok, you get the idea... finally there is a Correspondence between the two.

Why was this so hard, you ask? Because (and yes, I'm so glad you asked!) it's not as straight forward a question as it might seem.

For example, you'd think that because there is a Traditional Tarot card for the Sun, and the Moon, and all the 12 Zodiac Signs, that there's be a nice and neat correspondence between Tarot Cards and Planets and Zodiac Signs... right? Well, not so fast, there padre. It ain't quite that simple. Let's take a quick look.

Lets do the obvious ones:
MOON --- Moon
SUN --- Sun

Right. Those are the only two really really obvious ones. Now lets do the ones that are kind of clear, if you think about it a bit.

VIRGO --- High Priestess
JUPITER --- Emperor
LIBRA --- Justice
LEO --- Strength
SCORPIO --- Death
GEMINI --- Lovers

Ok after that it starts getting a little dodgy. Ok, quick quiz for you. Which of these remaining cards go with which Zodiac Signs and Planets?

Magician ...?
Empress ...?
Hierophant ...?
Chariot ...?
Hermit ...?
Fortune ...?
Hanged Man ...?
Temperance ...?
Devil ...?
Tower ...?
Star ...?
Judgment ...?
World ...?

Not as easy as you thought, eh?

For those of you keeping count, you might notice that the number of Planets and Zodiac Signs may not match the number of Tarot Cards. Lets count.

Tarot Cards in the Major Arcana - 22. That was easy.

Zodiac Signs - 12. That was easy.

Planets - 5 or 7 or 9 depending on your cultural references. Lets look at Planets for a moment. At this point things get pretty confusing. If you hunt around for any kind of official Table of Correspondences for Planets, Zodiac Signs and Tarot Cards you're going to notice pretty quickly that there is no consensus on the subject. This is because the number of planets doesn't quite match the Tarot Cards, unless you decide to go with 10 planets. In which case yup, then they match. But still... what planets go with what cards? There's some agreement on some of the slightly more intuitive ones...

MERCURY --- Magician
VENUS --- Empress
PLUTO --- Hanged Man
CAPRICORN --- Devil
MARS --- Tower
SATURN --- Judgment

Beyond that, it's pretty much been a guessing game, and there's not even firm agreement on all of the ones I just listed. In some cases, the game wasn't even quite fair... for example one I found from the middle ages that only used 5 planets and so had Venus and Saturn used twice, among other incongruities.

At any rate, for the Elthos RPG I needed (or wanted, rather) to have a clear and concise system that I could use as the basis for a rational Alignment System, something I'd been working on since the 1970's. In the end, after much hemming and hawing and hobbnobbing and reading and pulling of hairs and so forth, I settled on this configuration:

MERCURY --- Magician
VENUS --- Empress
TAURUS --- Hierophant
AQUARIUS --- Chariot
NEPTUNE --- Hermit
ARIES --- Fortune
PLUTO --- Hanged Man
CANCER --- Temperance
CAPRICORN --- Devil
MARS --- Tower
URANUS --- Star
SATURN --- Judgment
SAGITTARIUS --- World
EARTH --- Unicorn *
ELKOR --- Dragon *

You'll notice that there are 12 Planets. That's because I added the Earth (which most astrologers never counted as a planet, but of course it very much IS a planet), and I also added Elkor, otherwise known as Planet X, the World of the Elkron. This gave me 12, which I needed. Why? Because I wanted 12 Planets to go neatly with 12 Constellations of the Zodiac, of course.

But wait! There's only 22 Tarot Cards in the Major Arcana, and there's no way that 22 Major Arcana are going to match with 12 Zodiac Signs and 12 Planets. So if my premise was I wanted one Planet per Zodiac Sign (and of course, who wouldn't?), then I would have to have 24 Celestials (what I refer to as the collective body of Zodiac Signs and Planets). After all most Zodiac Signs have a corresponding Planet... but not all of them... which is why the whole thing has been a mess for centuries.

Ok, so how to solve? Naturally, in my infinite wisdom as Gamemaster of Elthos, I took the only logical expedient. I created two new Tarot Cards The Dragon and the Unicorn.

And NOW I have 12 Planets that correspond with the 12 Constellations, and all of those corresponding with one, and only one Tarot Card.

And to make things even spiffier, I embodied the entire system on a Tarot Deck created for me by Jason Moser... and put it all on T-Shirts.

Please don't ask why they are on T-Shirts. The answer is just too painfully obvious.

So here you are... enjoy!

PISCES --- Fool
MERCURY --- Magician
VIRGO --- High Priestess
VENUS --- Empress
JUPITER --- Emperor
TAURUS --- Hierophant
GEMINI --- Lovers
AQUARIUS --- Chariot
LIBRA --- Justice
NEPTUNE --- Hermit
ARIES --- Fortune
LEO --- Strength
PLUTO --- Hanged Man
SCORPIO --- Death
CANCER --- Temperance
CAPRICORN --- Devil
MARS --- Tower
URANUS --- Star
MOON --- Moon
SUN --- Sun
SATURN --- Judgment
SAGITTARIUS --- World
EARTH --- Unicorn *
ELKOR --- Dragon *

The Elthos RPG T-Shirt Store!

:) 
























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