22. Astro-Numerology of the Tarot
(Deduction of the Color-Cube)
by Tom Gilmore
All graphics by Tom Gilmore
The original name of the Sign Aquarius was Gnosis (for a detailed explanation refer to the Fixed Cross article). Gnosis is Greek for knowledge. Philosophers (those who love knowledge) hid the gnosis that the Christion knowledge-purge attempted to eradicate. The knowledge is only “secret” in that it was disguised so it could be transmitted in the open to the future, when the grip of spiritual suppression eased sufficiently for the disguises to be unmasked. Throughout this web-site many of the articles unmask the secrets for the edification of seekers of gnosis.
The ‘secret’ of the color-cube is revealed through logic. The “astro-logic” is basically a symbolic artifice that makes the ‘astro’ aspect of the logic irrelevant. The symbols used (and their names) are borrowed from astrology, but the logic applies to the geometry of a cube, and to color and number.
Astro-Logic uses the names of the 12 constellations on the Belt of the Zodiac (called Signs), and the names of the 7 astral bodies (Planets), as labels of components of the logic.
Astro-logic uses 5 actual Planets (plus the Sun and Moon). The word Planet is used instead of “astral bodies”. Jupiter is the “master planet”, far and away the most massive actual planet in the solar system. The clue that the 12 Signs are Jupiter’s Zodiac is found on Card 12 of the Tarot, “The Hanging Man”. The arms tied behind the hanging man’s back form a triangle, and his legs form a cross. The ancient symbol for Jupiter (a triangle under a cross) is superimposed over the hanging man in the modern Card 12 below.
The scaffold of the Hanging Man on Card 12 hides the symbol of Gemini (II), and it will be shown further on that the Astro-numerological value of Gemini is 12.
Part I -- Deduction of the Color-Cube
Factors of 12
The astro-logic associated with the Signs has to do with the factoring of 12 into (4x3) and (6x2).
The article on the Fixed Cross discusses the traditional (12=4x3) permutation of “elements” and “polarities”. The elements are Fire, Earth, Air, and Water, and the polarities are positive, negative, and neutral (Cardinal, Fixed, and Mutable). The permutation is shown in the chart below.
The mathematical symmetry of (12=4x3) and (12=6x2) set me looking for the (6x2). I noticed that (12=6x2) matched with the geometry of a cube’s 12 edges, in that each edge joins a pair of the six faces. Since the 12 edges could only be the 12 Signs, I decided that the faces would be associated to the 6 Planets under the master planet Jupiter (the cube itself).
The 6 ‘Planets’ under Jupiter in order of visibility are:
Sun, Moon, Venus, Mars, Mercury, and Saturn.
I noticed a relevant pattern in the astrological tradition of associations between Signs and Planets known as exaltation. Of the various lists of exaltations that I encountered, there were 8 exaltations that were common to most of them, and the first 5 were the same in all the lists (shown in teal below).
Sign element exalted Planet
Aries (1) Fire Mars
Taurus (2) Earth Venus
Gemini (3) Air Mercury
Cancer (4) Water Moon
Leo (5) Fire Sun
Scorpio (8) Water Mars
Capricorn(10) Earth Saturn
Aquarius(11) Air Saturn
The permutation order (see chart above) of the traditional elements is Fire, Earth, Air, and Water, and there is a traditional association of planet-to-element.
There is also a less-known planet-color association of red for the Sun, blue for the Moon, and Yellow for Venus.
The symbol for Mercury combines the symbols for Venus and the Moon (and Yellow + Blue =Green).
In what follows, the planet-color is combined with the planet-name.
Expanded Exaltation List
The permutation of 12=4x3 suggests assigning the 4 element/planet
associations to all 12 Signs in the traditional permutation order (see the
Signs table above).
This permutation serves as the first planet of the planet-pair of each Sign (shown on the list below under the heading “element Planet”).
The 2 Planets (Mars and Saturn) in the traditional exalted list shown above, that are not represented by the element-Planet associations, are shown in brown on the list below, under the heading “extra”.
Sign element Planet extra
Aries Sun Mars
Scorpio Moon Mars
Capricorn Venus Saturn
Aquarius Mercury Saturn
The 4 Signs with a second exalted Planet (in brown above) turn out to be distributed in the 4
Sun (Aries) and
Moon (Scorpio) associated with Mars
Mercury (Aquarius) and
Venus (Capricorn) associated with Saturn.
Assigning the Cube Edge and Face Labels
These expanded exalted associations are sufficient to deduce the locations of Planets on the cube-faces and Signs on the cube-edges.
Each cube-face is a single Planet-color, so the distribution of the 12 Signs
to 4 elements (12=4x3) requires the 3 Signs of each elememt-planet-color
to be on an edge of a single face.
Also, the Mars and Saturn faces had to have common edges with at least 2 of the 4 element-faces.
The only way these conditions could be met is if the 4 element-faces are all centered on a common plane, which meant Mars and Saturn must be on opposite faces.
In orienting the color-cube in space, I arranged the 4 element-faces as the vertical faces of the cube, as shown below.
I placed the active Mars on top and the passive Saturn on the bottom, which seemed intuitively appropriate.
The 4 Signs involved with the “extra” list (in brown above) dictated that the 3 Signs of common color on each of the Planet-faces had to be arranged as shown below. This is highlighted with triangular colored lines connecting the 3 Signs.
Notice the coherent symmetry of the colored triangles, confirming the logic in the astro-logical deduction. The solved color-cube shown above dictates the missing second planetary pairs (shown in black below).
Aries Sun Mars
Taurus Venus Moon
Gemini Mercury Mars
Cancer Moon Sun
Leo Sun Mercury
Virgo Venus Mars
Libra Mercury Venus
Scorpio Moon Mars
Sagittarius Sun Saturn
Capricorn Venus Saturn
Aquarius Mercury Saturn
Pisces Moon Saturn
For detail on the relationship between the Color-Cube, The Journeys of Gilgamesh and Electron Spin, refer to the article on the Fixed Cross.
Part II -- Deduction of the Color-Number-Cube
The Astro-Numeric Tarot Clues
As shown earlier, the symbol for Mercury combines the symbols for Venus and the Moon.
Card 4 (below) hides the symbol of Mercury (the + in the crossed legs, the O
in the held sphere, and the crescent in the horns adorning the throne. In this modern version of Card 4, the symbol
for Mercury is also perched on the wand.
(The bands on the globe held by
‘The Emperor’ are lines of latitude and longitude, not representing a plus(+).
Mercury = 4
The horns on the throne of Card 4
reveal that Taurus also has a value of 4, and this matches with the prior
deduction that Taurus = Venus + Moon.
Taurus = Venus + Moon = 4
The following Tarot cards provide Astro-numeric values used in the deduction.
The traditional Card 11 shows a maiden holding open the mouth of a lion
(Leo), revealing that the Astro-numeric value of Leo is 11.
(The scaffold of the Hanging Man on Card 12 hides the symbol of Gemini ( II ), but although correct, this is not needed for the deduction.)
Card 13 shows a fish, the icon of Pisces, revealing that the Astro-numeric
value of Pisces
(In addition, the card hides the symbol of the Moon in the blade of the scythe, and the concept of Saturn in the skeleton, which matches with the prior deduction that Pisces=Moon+Saturn.)
Card 14 shows a maiden passing water between jugs. The Water Bearer is the modern icon of Aquarius, revealing that the Astro-numeric value of Aquarius is 14.
Card 15 shows Pan (a hoofed man with horns and bat wings). The Ram horns of Pan signify Aries, revealing that the Astro-numeric value of Aries is 15.
All 22 cards are shown in the Kabalah article.
The Color-Number Deduction
To reiterate, the planet-pairs and Tarot-clue Astro-numeric values are
Aries = Mars + Sun = 15
Leo = Mercury + Sun = 11
Aquarius = Saturn + Mercury = 14
Pisces = Saturn + Moon = 13
Venus + Moon = 4
Mercury = 4
The Logic/Math follows:
Aries =15 =Mars
Leo = 11 =Mercury + Sun The Sun is common, so eliminating the Sun,
(15-11) = (Mars – Mercury), or (Mars = 15-11 + Mercury)
Mars = (15-11=4) + Mercury(4) = Mars(8)
Aries(15) = Mars(8) + Sun, so Sun=7
Leo = 11 = Mercury + Sun=7
Aquarius = 14 = Mercury + Saturn Mercury is common, so eliminating Mercury,
(14-11) = Saturn – Sun(7) , or (Saturn = 14-11 + Sun)
Saturn = (14-11=3) + Sun(7) = Saturn(10)
Pisces(13) = Moon + Saturn(10), so Moon=3
Taurus(4) = Moon(3) + Venus, so Venus=1
For the colors of Mars(8) and Saturn(10), since 8 and 10 must combine using only 1, 3, 4 and 7, it follows that 8 must equal 7+1, and 10 must equal 7+3.
Mars(8)=7+1 =Red + Yellow,
so Mars(8) is Orange
Saturn(10)=7+3 =Red + Blue, so Saturn(10) is Purple
The deduced Color-Cube is shown above. (It is rotated laterally counter-clockwise by one face from the color-cube depictions above, in order to clearly separate 3 paired faces).
The deduced numerical values of the Planets are:
Venus=1 -- Moon(3) -- Mercury(4) -- Sun(7) -- Mars(8) -- Saturn(10)
The additive pigment colors, and associated number additions, correspond as follows:
Green = Blue + Yellow (4=3+1)
Orange = Red + Yellow (8=7+1)
Purple = Red + Blue (10=7+3)
Notice the 3 connected face pairs each add to 11 (they are Leo(7+4), Scorpio(8+3), and Capricorn(10+1).
It turned out that these color and number associations to the faces of the 3 paired-faces of the color-cube are symbolic of the Quark components of atomic particles.
The Astro-Numeric Pairs
Now the full Astro-numeric values and planet-colors can be listed.
Aries(15) Sun(7) + Mars(8)
Taurus(4) Venus=1 + Moon(3)
Gemini(12) Mercury(4) + Mars(8)
Cancer(10) Moon(3) + Sun(7)
Leo(11) Sun(7) + Mercury(4)
Virgo(9) Venus=1 + Mars(8)
Libra(5) Mercury(4) + Venus(1)
Scorpio(11) Moon(3) + Mars(8)
Sagittarius(17) Sun(7) + Saturn(10)
Capricorn(11) Venus=1 + Saturn(10)
Aquarius(14) Mercury(4) + Saturn(10)
Pisces(13) Moon(3) + Saturn(10)
Notice that the 12 Sign-values add to 132, and (132/12 =11) which is the value of the 3 Signs Leo/Scorpio/Capricorn that comprise the full cube (see graphic above).
The color pairs are displayed below on a wheel based on the Horoscope pie-chart.
(The wheel is from an oil painting by Tom Gilmore, “Jupiter’s Zodiac”.)