Nine of Wands

October 2, 2009

A call for perserverence, hardships, stubbornness, distrust – visually, those are my responses to this card.

In readings, I depend on the context and position to help give this card fuller meaning, and have always felt the picture is strangely negative

Nine of Wands, Waite-Smith

Nine of Wands, Waite-Smith

as compared the the number/element combination I envision.

In the Crowley-Harris deck, the Sagittarian aspect is directly on the card at the base of an upward thrusting arrow. The arrow is fletched with the Moon and headed by the Sun, which I understand as a movement from an intuitive, subconscious act of will resulting in manifestation, expression, and conscious wisdom. Astride the central arrow are the other 8, headed by the moon and falling downward.

The BotA deck shows three triangles composed of wands, two upwards and the lowest downward; The material, as expected, assigns all Nines to Yesod on the trestleboard.

My personal response was to first imagine Sagittarius, bolstered by being both a nine and the ninth sign of the zodiac. Yesod is associated with the moon, so to balance that emanating, Jupiter presence in the card is a powerfully subconscious aspect speaking to hidden wisdom and intuition.

Ultimately, I’ve felt a little closer to this card. The bandage on his head can be seen as the consciousness being inadequate, his posture of defensiveness comes from an instinctual reaction. The wands in the background can represent the powerful, wealthy Jupiter, either as spiritual wealth gained by physical/mental travel or as the weight of huge potential – another contributer to his withdrawn, defensive stance. The wand he clutches is the final act of will he must allow to manifest to complete a cycle; He must put it into action, light that fire and move into the Ten in order to proceed. It is the arrow of sagittarius, crafted carefully and loved by it’s maker; It must be loosed in order to fulfill its purpose.

Let go of a project, allow it to manifest as it is, perservere in the face of doubt or ridicule. Don’t let the conscious mind control you, but let your intuition guide the arrow of your will, its ready!

Curious card, but I feel like I’ve had some crystallization of understanding. Fantastic!

2 Responses to “Nine of Wands”

  1. Karinjenny said

    Lionel – your thoughts on the Nine of Wands really intrigue me! The association with Sag/Jupiter makes excellent sense, and also your notes on the consciousness not yet being ready to accept that. I always think of this card as challenging us to let go of what we have accomplished – to finish it by giving it over to the collective, to the world at large, rather than holding on to the final piece. That would also mean to understand Jupiter fully – it is after all the planet of higher Wisdom and Learning as well as expansion. Jupiter used to rule Pisces (the collective) as well as Sagittarius – and the nine of Wands challenges us to not only embrace the Jupiter of Sagittarius, but also that energy that co-rules Pisces. Nowadays we think of Neptune as the only Ruler of Pisces but the older rulership of Jupiter in this sign underlies the meaning of the Nine of Wands: make our accomplishments available to the collective as well, not hold on to them individually. Remember, the Tarot was devised before Neptune was discovered… The reference to Yesod makes so much sense then as well- Yesod is a place of Neptunian “ocean-like” subconscious activity. It also os the place where the lightning of creation anchors itself before taking final form, and that is the Jupiterian idea – to make resources available, to give and provide magnanimously and abundantly. That is the very consciousness of abundance and empowerment which the 9 of Wands challenges us to accept as the final step in that 3×3 cycle of will and achievement (Wands). Thank s for a most enlightening and stimulating sharing!!! enlightening sharing!!!!

  2. […] Wands displays a defensive, injured figure. The pattern of creation applied to fire is considered a journey in the 3. In the nine, there is a weary feel; He clutches the last wand as though it defines him. He consciously seems rebellious, but his posture betrays self consciousness, that he intuitively knows that he must let go.  By clinging with the ego to his personal accomplishment, he can’t properly give to the greater work behind him. (I explored this card separately on this blog in my first post – Nine of Wands) […]

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