The Horseman of Wands

The number of this card is 33.  All of the Horsemen are fiery in nature, and as the suit of Wands is the fire suit, this is the most fiery card of the Minor Arcana.  It’s strange to consider that 33 is 3 X 11, and that 3 + 11 = 14, because 14 is the Alchemist and is ruled by Taurus which is maybe the most stable sign of the zodiac.  The truth hidden in this is that alchemy is all about working with fire, it’s about the containing, harnessing, guiding and directing of the fire energy without repressing or dampening it to the point of putting it out.

    This card happens with lightning swiftness, like fire.  It is beyond rationality.  It can seem crazy.  It can burn through things, which can be very good, if they are the right things.  Timewise it means “very soon., immediately, in the blink of an eye.”  It can also mean a fire that rages and then burns out, which is why in alchemy they always talk of keeping the fire steady.  Fire needs to be steadily fed if you want to keep it going.  On the other hand if you’re using it for fireworks maybe you’re ok with a big and short show and then it’s all over.

    Note that 3 is the number of connection or linking (Arcanum 3 = Libra), so 33 is connections that lead to more connection which lead to more connections.  This card can mean making all sorts of creative connections, and as 32, the number of the Ten of Wands also signifies the Tree of Life, 33 can signify the abundant creativity that comes forth from the Tree of Life.  33 adds up to 6 and is the 4th manifestation of 6, the sequence being 6-15-24-33.  6 is love, and here it is on the 4th level, which is the level of Scorpio, or creativity.  That means love manifesting in a creative manner – love that transforms, that carries us beyond the threshold of death.  The best art is born forth of love, art created by an artist who loves his or her subject matter.

    In the Major Arcana, the number for the element fire, according to the Sepher Yetzira, is 21, which in my reading of the rulers of the cards is the Sun.  Note how the difference between 21 and 33 is 12, the number of Pisces which signifies letting go, giving in submitting – becoming submissive to the fire.  The way to manifest our creative (Fire) energy is to let go, to give in to it, to have faith (12, Pisces) that its fiery wisdom will take us where we need to go.

    And just as fire can get out of hand, sometimes the energy of this card will get out of hand too, and canl take us to scary, terrifying places, or burn something away we may have thought we wanted to hold on to.  But if we can find in ourselves the trust and faith that our intuitive understanding can give us, we can benefit greatly from the energy of this card, for its light bears great, irresistible power.


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