The Fool is awash in symbolism. The description of the card and its interpretation found in the Book of Thoth has the capacity to make parts of your brain or the entire thing, explode. As with many things Crowley, The Book of Thoth is obtuse and I believe, willfully so; he did love to play the intellectual superiority card whenever and wherever possible. As mentioned in a previous blog – he was an asshat.
The symbolism can be studied and debated until the offspring of Hathor come home. I am going to try to boil it all down to a palatable amount and consistency.
The Fool is nothing but can be everything. Nice convoluted way to start, don’t you think?
The Fool is the space before the plan has been laid out, a glimmer of a direction but not quite clear. He is the unformed thought. Ideas, actions and personality yet to be formed. The Fool has the world, the universe, the alter-universe laid out in front of him and so, as a result – he is everything, the starting point but he can also be the end as well. We can see why this is, a little further down.
You will note that The Fool is referred to as being masculine. I am not being a smartass or femi-nazi – The Fool was interpreted, by Crowley, as phallic in symbolism, therefore, The Fool is masculine in aspect.
The Fool can be indecisiveness, with a present danger of having that indecisiveness turn into stagnation BECAUSE no direction, no goal is being set. He may also be headed off in all sorts of directions with no real plan or he can be standing in place, a whirlwind of unspecific thought patterns. He can be a spiritual willy-nilly or unable to make a life choice in the material world. He is all things, unformed – unplanned, unexecuted. He can appear at any time, in any situation. He is procrastination. He is indecision. He is cowardice. He is fear but he can also be the mover and shaker, the leader, the hero – he has only to take that first step forward.
In a reading, it is paramount to look at the cards in an overall sort of manner; establish the character or tone of the spread. Where is The Fool placed and what sort of influence does his undirected flow, his indecisiveness impart to the situation or reading, overall?
What are the cards showing you? Do you see a majority of Major Arcana cards? If so, what are their commonalities? Is there a common theme are do they seem totally random? Are there more of the Minor Arcana? Again what is overall mood to these cards?
The Fool can be you or I as we try to sort out our lives, as we find our way through the twists and turns of our own realities. Our OWN realities because no two realities are the same. We all interpret every moment of every day, every word, thought and action through our own frames of reference. No one, not even a parent, a spouse or a child sees our reality in the same way as do we. Remember, we are each and every one of us, stars in our own right.
The Fool is, currently, directionless and frustrating – an esoteric dumb blonde but the potential for greatness is there, the possibility of progress is right in front of the individual, they have only to take their heads out of their butts or sand, to move forward.