The Emperor


Aries is the first sign of the zodiac, and that’s pretty much how those born under this sign see themselves: first. Aries are the leaders of the pack, first in line to get things going. Whether or not everything gets done is another question altogether, for an Aries prefers to initiate rather than to complete. Do you have a project needing a kick-start? Call an Aries, by all means. The leadership displayed by Aries is most impressive, so don’t be surprised if they can rally the troops against seemingly insurmountable odds — they have that kind of personal magnetism. An Aries won’t shy away from new ground, either. Those born under this sign are often called the pioneers of the zodiac, and it’s their fearless trek into the unknown that often wins the day. Aries is a bundle of energy and dynamism, kind of like a Pied Piper, leading people along with its charm and charisma. The dawning of a new day — and all of its possibilities — is pure bliss to an Aries.
The symbol of Aries is the Ram, and that’s both good and bad news. Impulsive Aries might be tempted to ram their ideas down everyone’s throats without even bothering to ask if they want to know. It’s these times when you may wish Aries’ symbol were a more subdued creature, more lamb than ram perhaps. You’re not likely to convince the Ram to soften up; these folks are blunt and to the point. Along with those qualities comes the sheer force of the Aries nature, a force that can actually accomplish a great deal. Much of Aries’ drive to compete and to win comes from its Cardinal Quality. Cardinal Signs love to get things going, and Aries exemplifies this even better than Cancer, Libra or Capricorn.
Aries is ruled by Mars. Taking a peek at Roman mythology, we find that Mars was the God of War. Our man Mars was unafraid to do battle, and much the same can be said for Aries. These folks are bold, aggressive and courageous. They can summon up the inner strength required to take on most anyone, and they’ll probably win. Aries do not lack energy or vitality, and they can stay in the game longer than most anyone else. Now that’s a winning edge. Rams are also, for the most part, independent and well aware of their own interests in a given situation. This sometimes myopic view may not be for everyone, but it does help Aries get things going. Further, their competitive natures ensure that they will play the game with zeal and vigor. At times, their approach may be construed as arrogant and domineering, but it takes a lot of focus to be a leader (or so an Aries would say). Sadly, Aries won’t usually be around for the final victory (defeat? never). These folks will more than likely have bolted to the next project before the first one is done.
The element associated with Aries is Fire. Think action, enthusiasm and a burning desire to play the game. Aries love physicality, so they won’t sit on the sidelines for long, if at all. They’ll jump into the fray full force and will contribute much in the process. Talk about eager beavers! Sure, some of their decisions may later prove to have been hasty, but you’ll never find an Aries who regretted taking a shot.
Making things happen is what it’s all about to these folks. Aries are also unafraid of stepping onto new terrain. The challenge inherent in taking on the unknown is heaven on Earth for Rams. Sure, they may appear arrogant when they take on the world, but they’ll be quick to tell you it’s the only way to go. While a common Aries refrain might well be ‘me first,’ there’s no point in arguing with them since, in their minds, they are first. Is this unbridled ego? Maybe, but that might be what it takes to blaze a new trail. Oh, and on the subject of arguing, it’s the Ram who will have the last word, so save your breath.
Aries plays as hard as they work. These folks are happiest in a spirited soccer match or engaging in the martial arts. In the game of love, the Ram’s ardor is unquestioned, although Aries can also be playful and romantic with their mate. With Aries ruling the head, face and brain, those born under this sign need to be on the lookout for headaches and are well-served to take the occasional deep breath. The Ram’s color is bright red, a sure sign of the fire that breathes within.
The great strength of the Aries-born is in their initiative, courage and determination. These folks love to get things going and are fearless along the way. Their dynamism and competitive spirit add considerably to any of their endeavors. (Source:

Aries, The Ram. Aries is mythologically represented as a ram and the symbol describes most accurately those born under its influence; a pointed and protruding sheep like nose, wide forehead, pointed chin and the resultant triangular face noted in many people, are unmistakable indications of their rising sign. Light brown or reddish tint of the hair is a pronounced characteristic of the Arian,; the body is slender and well formed; if the first part of the sign is rising the body is shorter, and the complexion darker than given by the latter degrees.
Planets in the rising sign will modify the description however, and the student must use his knowledge of the character of the planets in conjunction with the description of the Sign. The Sun and Mars make the complexion more florid, the Moon and Saturn make it paler and darker, Jupiter and Venus make the body more portly. Saturn shortens. Uranus and Mercury lengthens. This applies to all the signs, but is especially marked when a planet rises in the sign it rules. Mars in Aries rising would give fiery red hair and a face full of freckles. The Sun rising in Leo would give a florid complexion with flaxen hair, but if Saturn were there, instead it would shorten the body and darken the hair.
Aries people are bold, self-confident and impulsive; they aim to lead, dislike to follow, are always ready to take the initiative in any movement that appeals to them, but often lack persistence to carry their projects to a conclusion over serious obstacles.
The Sun, and Mars the Ruler, rising in Aries would intensify the above, but as a thorough explanation will be given under the heading “The Intrinsic Nature of the Planets,” the student is referred thereto. We may mention it here, however, as a peculiarity that Aries people live through fevers to which others succumb. We have known their hair to fall out, and the temperature to remain four degrees above the usual maximum for many hours without fatal result. (Source:

Mars is the action planet of the zodiac. The ‘Red Planet,’ after all, should be pretty fiery, and Mars does not disappoint. Energy, passion, drive and determination are all right up Mars’s alley. This planet commands you (and yes, Mars does rule the military) to stand up, be noticed and get things done — sitting on the sidelines belongs somewhere else in the heavens. Simply put, Mars speaks to the power and confident expression of the individual.
Ambition and competition are also within Mars’s realm. Whether it’s at work or on the field of play, Mars encourages us to face challenges and to be our best — or better. Aggression is part of the plan here, although Mars also values courage and honor. Assertion and a daring, fearless nature please this planet.
It’s important to note that Mars’s energy can be constructive or destructive. The God of War in ancient times, Mars could be brutally violent. While this energy still emanates from the planet, it also asks us to harness this force for good. Stamina, ambition and achievement are all part of Mars’ mantra.
Mars rules our sexuality and sexual energy, and governs weapons, accidents and surgery (the last two illustrating the yin and yang nature of this planet). In the end, however, the energy of Mars can be quite useful if used properly.
It takes nearly two years for Mars to complete its orbit through the zodiac. It is masculine energy and rules Aries and the First House. (Source:

1st House, House of Self (Life). Ego. Beginnings and initiatives.Physical appearance, traits and characteristics. First impressions. General outlook into the world.
First House rules the physical body and its constitution and appearance; it determines conditions in the childhood home while the person is under control of the parents.

The Jester (Fool) archetype urges us to enjoy the process of our lives. Although the Jester can be prone to laziness and dissipation, the positive Jester invites us all out to play, showing us how to turn our work, our interactions with others, and even the most mundane tasks into FUN. The goal of the Jester is perhaps the wisest goal of all, which is just to enjoy life as it is, with all its paradoxes and dilemmas.
What causes most dread in the Jester is a lack of stimulation and being ‘not alive’. They must seek to ‘be’, perhaps as the Sage, but may not understand this. (Source

The number 2 – Mars, Reactive/Intuitive (Fire)
Positive traits:
– Cooperative, reactive, adaptability, energetic, quick thinking, sensitive to the needs of others, enthusiastic, open-minded, honest, strong instincts.
Negative traits:
– Furious or depressive, stubborn, hesitating, swinging, yielding, irresolute, drown in detail, irrational, impulsive, impatience, moody, short tempered, self-involved, outspoken.

Crowley: The Emperor XVII (Tzadi – 17, Aries). This card is attributed to the letter Tzaddi, and it refers to the sign of Aries in the Zodiac. This sign is ruled by Mars, and therein the Sun is exalted. The sign is thus a combination of energy in its most material form with the idea of authority. The sign TZ or TS implies this in the original, onomatopoetic form of language. It is derived from Sanskrit roots meaning Head and Age, and is found to-day in words like Cæsar, Tsar, Sirdar, Senate, Senior, Signor, Sefior, Seigneur.
The card represents a crowned male figure, with imperial vestments and regalia. He is seated upon the throne whose capitals are the heads of the Himalayan wild ram, since Aries means a Ram. At his feet, couchant, is the Lamb and Flag, to confirm this attribution on the lower plane; for the ram, by nature, is a wild and courageous animal, lonely in lonely places, whereas when tamed and made to lie down in green pastures, nothing is left but the docile, cowardly, gregarious and succulent beast. This is the theory of government.
The Emperor is also one of the more important alchemical cards; with Atu II and III, he makes up the triad: Sulphur, Mercury, Salt. His arms and head form an upright triangle; below, crossed legs represent the Cross. This figure is the alichemical symbol of Sulphur (see Atu X). Sulphur is the male fiery energy of the Universe, the Rajas of Hindu philosophy. This is the swift creative energy, the initiative of all Being. The power of the Emperor is a generalization of the paternal power; hence such symbols as the Bee and the FleurdeAys, which are shown on this card. With regard to the quality of this power, it must be noted that it represents sudden, violent, but impermanent activity. If it persists too long, it burns and destroys. Distinguish from the Creative Energy of Aleph and Beth: this card is below the Abyss.
The Emperor bears a sceptre (surmounted by a ram’s head for the reasons given above) and an orb surmounted by a Maltese cross, which signifies that his energy has reached a successful issue, that his government has been established.
There is one further symbol of importance. His shield represents the two-headed eagle crowned with a crimson disk. This represents the red tincture of the alchemist, of the nature of gold, as the white eagle shown in Atu III pertains to his consort, the Empress, and is lunar, of silver.
It is finally to be observed that the white light which descends upon him indicates the position of this card in the Tree of Life. His authority is derived from Chokmah, the creative Wisdom, the Word, and is exerted upon Tiphareth, the organized man.

Waite: The Emperor IV (4). He has a form of the Crux ansata for his sceptre and a globe in his left hand. He is a crowned monarch – commanding, stately, seated on a throne, the arms of which axe fronted by rams’ heads. He is executive and realization, the power of this world, here clothed with the highest of its natural attributes. He is occasionally represented as seated on a cubic stone, which, however, confuses some of the issues. He is the virile power, to which the Empress responds, and in this sense is he who seeks to remove the Veil of Isis; yet she remains virgo intacta.
It should be understood that this card and that of the Empress do not precisely represent the condition of married life, though this state is implied. On the surface, as I have indicated, they
stand for mundane royalty, uplifted on the seats of the mighty; but above this there is the suggestion of another presence. They signify also–and the male figure especially–the higher
kingship, occupying the intellectual throne. Hereof is the lordship of thought rather than of the animal world. Both personalities, after their own manner, are “full of strange experience,” but theirs is not consciously the wisdom which draws from a higher world. The Emperor has been described as (a) will in its embodied form, but this is only one of its applications, and (b) as an expression of virtualities contained in the Absolute Being–but this is fantasy.

Eliphas Lévi: IV (4) The Emperor – L’Empereur. The clothing of a Magician should be new, clean, and woven by a virgin; magical implements should be new, and consecrated by prayers and incense.
The Magician needs to be abstinent, chaste, and devoted to the Work. His spirit and heart must be free from other claims upon them, and his will power devoted wholly, perseveringly, and with intelligent faith to the success of any great work, and to the results of his scientific occult performances. Magical operations should commence with Exorcisms of air, earth, and water, and end by Consecrations with fire.
The Exorcisms of Air is performed by breathing forth toward the four cardinal points, by the Word, and by repeating this invocation:

“The Spirit of God brooded over the waters, and God breathed into Man the breath of life.
The Spirit of God filled the universe; in it all things exist, and in it is the Word of Power.
May the Word be in my spirit, and so may all things be subservient to me.
Be ye exorcised then, ye beings of Air, in the Name of Him whose breath first filled all things with the Holy Spirit. Amen.”

The Prayer of the Sylphs should then be recited.
The Exorcism of Earth is performed by the sprinkling of consecrated water, by the breath, by the Word, and by the burning of incense suitable to the day of the ceremony. Then recite the Prayer of the Gnomes.
The Exorcism of Water is performed by the laying on of hands, by the breath, by the Word, and by sprinkling upon it consecrated salt mixed with a little of the ash taken from the censer, and duly consecrated. The Water is to be sprinkled around by a brush composed of sprays of vervain, periwinkle, sage, mint, valerian, and basil; these are to be tied with a thread taken from a virgin’s distaff, to a handle of the wood of a nut−tree which has not yet borne fruit. Upon this handle you must engrave, with the magical dagger, the characters of the Seven Spirits.
The Salt is consecrated by reciting over it the following Latin prayer:

“In isto Sale sit sapientia, et ab omni corruptione servet mentes nostras et corpora nostra, per Chokmah, et in virtute Ruach Chokmael; recedant ab isto phantasmata hylae ut sit Sal celestis, Sal terrae et Terra salis, ut nutrietur bos triturans, et addat spei nostrae cornua tauri volantis. Amen.”

Then this Latin prayer over the ashes from the censer:

“Revertatur cinis ad fontem aquarum viventium, et fiat terra fructificans et germinat arborem jucunditatis, et incensum suavitatis, per tria nomina Binah, Chokmah et Kether, in principio et in fine, per Alpha et Omega, qui sunt in Spiritu Azoth. Amen.”

While you sprinkle the mixed salt and ashes into the water, recite:

“Emittes Spiritum O Tiphereth, et creabuntur omnia nova in his ergo sit semen venturi saeculi. Amen.”

The Magical Ritual of the Sanctum Regnum “All powerful Father, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, whose voice is heard in the great waters, who didst cleave the waters of the Red Sea to make a passage for the children of Israel, and then didst cause the sea to swallow up the Egyptians who were pursuing them, Mi Kamako Baalim Jehovah, thou whose altar, composed of the Twelve Jewels, is beneath the waters of the sacred river, deign to bless this water and to banish from it all baneful influences, Shaddai, Shaddai, Shaddai (breathe three times over the water). By the great names, Araritha, Eloah va Daath, Elohim Tzabaoth and Elohim Gibur, may this water be consecrated for the service of those who are about to invoke the Divine Powers for the benefit of their souls. Amen.”

Then the Prayer of the Undines should be recited.

To perform the Exorcism of Fire, cast upon it salt, incense, and sulphur, while you pronounce the names of Anael, Michael, and Samael; the prayer of the Salamanders should then be recited.
You must thoroughly understand that elemental beings are souls of an imperfect type, not yet raised in the scale up to human existence, and that they can only manifest power when called into action by the adept as auxiliaries to his will, by means of that universal astral fluid in which they live. The kingdom of the Gnomes is assigned to the North, the Salamanders to the South, the Sylphs to the East, and the Undines to the West.
These Elemental beings are related to, and bear an influence over persons, according as they are of one or other of the four Temperaments. The Gnomes are related to the Melancholic type, Salamanders to the Sanguine, Undines to the Phlegmatic, and Sylphs to the Bilious Temperament. Their symbols are those of Taurus the Bull for Gnomes; Leo the Lion for Salamanders; the Eagle for Sylphs; and the sign of Aquarius for Undines.
Their Rulers are respectively Ghob, Djin, Paralda, and Nicsa.
The combination of these four types of face and being represents the Created Universe, a complete and eternal entity, Man in fact, the Microcosm; and this is the first formula of the mystical explanation of the enigma of the Sphynx.


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