Thoughts and desires

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The Fool Tarot card

The Fool represents true innocence, a kind of perfect state of joy and freedom, a feeling of being one with the spirit of life at all times; in other words, the ‘immortal’ self we feel became entrapped in the confusions and compromises of the ordinary world. Perhaps such a radiant self never really existed. Somehow we experience our intuition of it as something lost. Virtually every culture has developed a myth of a Fall from a primeval paradise.

‘Innocence’ is a word often misunderstood. It does not mean without guilt’ but rather a freedom and a total openness to life, a complete lack of fear that comes through a total faith in living and in your own instinctive self. Innocence does not mean ‘asexual’ as some people think. It is sexuality expressed without fear, without guilt, without connivance and dishonesty. It is sexuality expressed spontaneously and freely, as the expression of love and the ecstasy of life.

The Fool bears the number 0 because all things are possible to the person who is always ready to go in any direction. He does not belong in any specific place; he is not fixed like the other cards. His innocence makes him a person with no past, and therefore an infinite future. Every moment is a new starting point. In Arabic numerals the number 0 bears the shape of an egg, to indicate that all things emerge from it. Originally the zero was written as a dot; in Hermetic and Qabalistic tradition the universe emerged from a single point of light. And God in the Qabalah is often described as ‘nothingness’ because to describe God as any thing would be to limit him to some finite fixed state. Those Tarot commentators who argue whether the Fool belongs before, after, or somewhere between the other cards seem to be missing the point. The Fool is movement, change, the constant leap through life.

For the Fool no difference exists between possibility and reality. Fool means a total emptiness of hopes and fears, and the Fool expects nothing, plans nothing. He responds instantly to the immediate situation. Other people will receive his complete spontaneity. Nothing calculated, nothing held back. He does not do this deliberately, like someone consciously deciding to be wholly honest with a friend or a lover. The Fool gives his honesty and love naturally, to everyone, without ever thinking about it.