The Chakras with the Tarot Keys


41 - Sri Chakra & Vitruvian

This post, concluding my Chakra journey, partners Vishnu, the Covenant and Exodus in my other blog, Aquariel.

(Hence, my new drawing of Vishnu in this one also.)

The Builders of the Adytum Tarot cards are supplied as line drawings, uncoloured.  We  colour them in “by the book”, to take them into our own energy field, as co-creators.  The colour relationships speak louder than words.  In this set of windows into the inner plane,  each colour has its musical tone, Hebrew letter, number and vibration.  Very long ago, when the teaching of the Ageless Wisdom was endangered, it was put into coded picture form, to protect it from abuse and persecution.  Additionally, the subconscious responds to images rather than words:  the pictures as living archetypes were circulated underground, and survived.  In the Middle Ages they surfaced as a deck of playing cards.  In the 19th century, Eliphas Levi and others revived a Kabbalistic Tarot, and re-discovered the key to the Greater Mysteries.

Eliphas Levi (1989)

Eliphas Levi (1989)

Eliphas Levi referred to the Tarot as a divine algebra, and wrote, “A prisoner devoid of books, had he only a Tarot of which he knew how to make use, could in a few years acquire a universal science, and converse with an unequalled doctrine and inexhaustible eloquence.  The oracles of the Tarot give answers as exact as mathematics, and measured as the harmonies of nature.  By the aid of these signs and their infinite combinations, it is possible to arrive at the natural and mathematical revelation of all secrets of nature.


The 22 Tarot Keys are a full Alchemical process, a western Yoga method.  Not only does each one have its special path on the Tree of Life:  pictorially they illustrate the Chakras for westerners.  This illustration shows the sequence from left to right – the root chakra being The World, the sacral chakra The Tower, and so on.


7 Tarot Keys and Temperance

7 Tarot Keys and Temperance


Crown:  Key 1, Magician -Mercury

Crown: Key 1, Magician –Mercury

Each Chakra has its specific planetary vibration.  Of the 22 Tarot Keys/Hebrew letters, 1,2,3,10,16,19 and 21 are traditionally assigned to the alchemical properties of the planets.   If we want to practice the instrument more deeply, this colour scale is equally related to musical tones and frequencies.   Therefore, when we look at those colours in sequence, or study the Tarot Keys together, their picture language messages those centres in our subconscious.

The Indian Yoga system energizes the subtle/physical centres more subjectively.   This science of the nadis is ideal for a culture where a meditative life style apart from life’s muddle is – or has been – supported.

The Western Alchemy system disapproves of this, because it can overload and imbalance the physical
organs and endocrines.

Third eye Chakra, Key 2 The Priestess - Moon

Third eye Chakra, Key 2 The Priestess – Moon

Our system is based on the mutual information of self
conscious and subconscious.  It therefore views the chakras objectively, as pictures to observe and meditate on.

The Indian emphasis is on purification and immediate deliverance from caste restrictions.  The Western emphasis is on acceptance of life’s rough and tumble, and that things take time to ripen.

So with the Builders of the Adytum, we lay out the Tarot Keys for the seven chakras, and contemplate them one by one, and in relationship.  Each one is designed to “message” or illumine its assigned centre.   There is an elder wisdom of subtle anatomy in this.


Throat chakra: Key 3 The Empress - Venus

Throat chakra: Key 3 The Empress – Venus

My rainbow spectrum for instance (discussed in the last 4 posts), is a view of the chakra principle all in one – the white light fountains up through the colours of the rainbow, as Ruach;  as Kether:  the cleft of the seed.   To go into more detail, we need to adopt a system which suits us.   It doesn’t matter which one, for their destiny is the same.   The Indian system for instance, is very elaborate, with gods, colours and Sanskrit intonations for each one, and I have not studied it.

I think the inclusion of gods and prayers helps to protect and guard the physical centre so transposed and energised.   It does not do to gloss over any esoteric system superficially.   Nobody can play certain kinds of music till they have practiced the notes, the keys, the scales and arpeggios.   Those musicians who are natural and brilliant improvisers, inherit the fruit of previous lifetimes’ practice! – built into the cellular and subtle memory.

Heart Chakra: Key 19 The Sun - Sun

Heart Chakra: Key 19 The Sun – Sun

So called spirituality is a detailed map of anatomy, physiology and psychology rolled into one.  Coming to us from the ageless wisdom, it not only instructs:  it creatively inspires, and kindles the secret of health, vigour and love.

The proper description of a Chakra is “vibration”.   Without the primal vibratory wave or concentricity, no organ, no physical function can come into being, or operate, or be coherent with the rest.   When we are awake to our chakral centres, we move a little upstream, into their potency.   We reflect on the potency rather than on the visible area or physique.

This is a homeopathic practice.   We move upstream from the molecules to the atoms.   (The atoms clump together in numerical patterns to form binaries and thus the molecular lattice.)

Solar Plexus chakra - bota Key 10, The Wheel

Solar Plexus chakra – Tarot Key 10, The Wheel – Jupiter

As mind and body are interwoven through the organic capillary of Daat, the Tarot Keys as archetypal pictures of each centre, bring clarity to the way we think and live.

The Tarot Keys are codes.  They are cylinder locks, whose numbers open the inner room.

It is a waste of time and energy to try to resolve the different Chakra systems and “prove” their different colour notations together.  It is best to work with whichever one you respond to best, and to respect the way other systems – according to culture – teach the Word, with a different spelling.



Sacral Chakra - Tarot Key 16 The Tower - Mars

Sacral Chakra – Tarot Key 16 The Tower – Mars

rainbow spectrum sketch 1

rainbow spectrum sketch 1



Root Chakra: Tarot Key 21, The World - Saturn

Root Chakra: Tarot Key 21, The World – Saturn

rainbow spectrum sketch2

rainbow spectrum sketch2




Fontanel - Chakras/Tarot Keys/Tree of Life

Fontanel – Chakras/Tarot Keys/Tree of Life – new today



He displaced his passionate mind.
His quest into the nadis churned
from nadir’s night, the nectar; then turned
to embrace undying spark, refined.

Reversing dark to light, the dross to burn,
he suffered his painful insistence.
In Self, the Self is all existence
consuming resistance:  in Atma born.

Within and without, the same lamp shines.
He saw as One the world,
so broke the nexus, knot of nadis furled.

In my dwelling, light enshrines
my bond of body, Self empearled:
the churning is the Sun itself, pure gold.

From 55 Sonnets on the Ramana Gita, 2011



Notes from a Group Discussion, 21 April 2013

In Key 14 Temperance or Probation,  the Archangel appears like a white Fountain, shining through the rainbow spectrum and the worlds.

Key 7 the Chariot, is a stepped-down voltage of Key 1 the Magician:  to form an enclosure or vessel for the seed of light.

bota key 7 The Chariot

bota key 14 Temperance


NOTES ON KEY 14:  Why are the sky, crown and seven point star coloured gold?   To prove the Work of the Sun.  Yellow, and thus also gold, are the Eagle’s beak (speech) and feet (walkers of the Path) and the lion’s eyes (sight). Eagle and Lion are otherwise earth-brown, the mixture of the primary colours as solid clod.   Gold gleams through life’s clouds, like it does through Earth’s mineral veins.  Gold within our bodies and within the planet, is “petrified sunlight”.

The path just visible behind the lion, is also gold.   In the distance, this golden path reaches the twin peaks Binah and Hokhmah.  Above and between them shines the Crown of the Sun – Kether on the Tree.

Clearly, we can study each Tarot Key from Malkuth subjectively, as a map of the Tree looking upward into the living Sefiroth.

The Archangel who pours the fire which flows and the water which burns, is clad in shining white. Over him is a rainbow corona.  The whiteness fountains up through the apparent rainbow spectrum.  The Archangel’s wings are designated red, but I have coloured this redness to contain the shine of the rainbow itself, through it.   Light plays and dances this way, everywhere.

The seven point Star on the Archangel’s breast cannot be exactly measured by our earthly geometry.  7 does not divide exactly into 360 degrees.  Each angle of arc from centre to two points of the star, is just over 51 degrees.   This is the same angle of inclination in the Great Pyramid.  The correct figure can be found by tying knots in a druid’s string.

(9) Seven Branch Star


In other words, the attempts to measure things exactly by our geometry, do not adequately reflect the Cosmic pattern.  If we force the issue, the result is discordant.   If piano keys are tuned logically, each at an exact interval from its neighbours, the result is discord – it clangs.   A piano tuner works concentrically from centre or middle C, adjusting the relationships of octaves, intervals and chords till they “chime”.   Each key has three strings:  the adjustment of the resonance, to ring.   Every occult and esoteric system through our history is based on the triad – the primary circuit of electric power.

The tetrahedron is a circuitry – with its new cycle emerging from the “produced” fourth point, whichever way it turns.

Tuning a part in relation to all its surroundings is a way of Mandala – the way a keyboard tuner checks the chords around and fore and aft, to harmonise.   Such are our individual lives in relation to all the other parts being played.  It is the Sri Chakra web, constantly being tuned.

40 deer Sri Yantra

How do we tread the path?   Start walking into Nature’s mirror!   What is the Great Work?  We keep plodding.  Our subconscious and selfconscious learn to converse, rather than to collide.


Yehudi Menuhin was born with an old Talent or passion.   As a child, he played without practice, and could perform anything.  It was all embedded in his cellular subconscious.  As a teenager, he became self-conscious and the faculty disintegrated.   He became a notoriously unreliable musician, because his tutelary subconscious was not yet working consciously.  The levels were in disharmony.  He played wrong notes, he fell out of rhythm, he was Out of Tune!   So he had to re-tune.  Yehudi’s autobiography about his re-tooling process, is very moving.   Falling off the adult pedestal of Prodigy, he had to learn like a child, the scales, fingering and arpeggios.  Gradually, the fully in-formed musician emerged.  Kabbalistically, we have to balance the right and left pillars in our Ground.

This calamity and the dark valley it took him through, led him to study Yoga and be a messenger for Iyengar in the west.   Similarly – like Barenboim – Yehudi became an ambassador for Israeli cultural consciousness, and the healing of the holocaust.   He took world citizenship;  he spoke out about ecology;  he expanded his musical horizon to India and to jazz;  he experimented and played his fiddle with Ravi Shankar and with Grapelli – not very well, some think:  how could he keep up with these Masters?  His enthusiasm was contagious.


Stephane Grapelli in 1973

Stephane Grapelli in 1973

Ravi Shankar & tabla, circa 1967

Ravi Shankar & tabla, circa 1967



Galactic Core and 2012

Key 14 – the Arcanum of Probation, the testing of the spirit – is assigned to Sagittarius.  Viewed from Earth, the Sagittarian constellation is superimposed on Galactic centre.   Sagittarius is called Mula in Indian astrology.   “Mula” means the root, and Muladhara (root hari …) is the name of the base chakra in the Indian system.

“Mula” is likewise darkness and death, according to our projection – the unseen black hole of an Unimaginable Light behind billions and billions of stars and years of light.   Great sages perceive, in the core of our galaxy, the root of the multitude whirlings (gilgalem),  a Sun so vast our physical eyes cannot see it.   The American seer, Robert Adams spoke often of it.

robert sketch empty

Now, at the end of the Mayan calendar, 21 December 2012, our Sun transitted this degree of Mula forming an exact alignment with it.   At all other times – as the galaxy is not a disk but three-dimensional and moving as a spiral – this transit rocked above or below the point.

This time, on that day, there was a kind of eclipse, rather like in our microcosmic scale, the biannual alignment of earth, sun and moon.

We all were aware subconsciously, of the gathering moment of the dark crossing, and each culture projected its own tensions upon it:  there was a concerted belief, deeper than usual -(due to the transit and to long projections onto the telescoping of time) – in the Worlds’ End.

This tension had built up over several decades, and is now released in the way tidal waves travel through the cosmos as unseen ripples.   Only with many decades’ hindsight will we be able to discern the effect.   We are still inside its “eye”.   We are affirmed to drop some of our bundles which bind, and look through a window to a simpler way of life.   It is as if what bothered us so much before, gets unknotted and drops away.   What we seem to agree on, is a new and multi-dimensioned perception of Time.  Time is not a line, but a sphere – a flower of spheres.

the tree in flower of life ja


The shift is timeless, but in our terms it doesn’t happen overnight.   More likely, we enter a process of facing each of our restrictions and working through them: conflict resolution.

On the whole, and in planetary fashion, there is a reduction of general tension, a slowing of the breath.  We passed through the centre of the hourglass.


Netzach Hod Temperance

Netzach Hod Temperance

Key 14, Temperance, illustrates the fact that “the Sun, the Crown is coming to find you.”: “equilibrium is the royal road to gnosis”.  To the left is the cool current (water on lion) – inhale;  to the right, the warm current (fire on eagle) – exhale.

The teaching advises:  if we want to achieve something, try focusing on its complementary or polar opposite, to allow it to grow.  Our wishes often overload and incapacitate the desired object.   Cushion the billiard shot!   Most esoteric methods are cunning billiard shots.   The cue hits the ball into the pocket by bouncing another one to it, from off the edge.

The Great Work is:

the way of an Eagle in the air,
the way of a Serpent on a rock,
the way of a Ship on the sea,
the way of a Man with a maid.

As all the medieval Alchemists agreed:  when our eyes are open to the Inner Gold, or work of the Sun – unbrokenly aligned to the whole galaxy –  we shall never more know poverty of means or spirit.

This fact, engendering awe, love, freedom and reverence – the sacred Yod, Heh, Vav, Heh –  is Brahman, the Tathagata, the Buddha Nature, Yeshua, the Arc of the Covenant.


Vishnu at rest

Vishnu at rest


As the Age of Aquarius matures, the Arc is delivered from priesthoods, into our hearts’ response-ability;  into these feet which do walk the Road, into these hands which touch, this heart which speaks openly.   Thus, there are more born on Earth at present, than ever before;  containing by homeopathic proportion, a larger number of the Awakened incarnates.

We who awake traverse a valley of great shadow where the Sun is rising over the mountains.  We sow glow-worms in the abyss …  seeds of gold.


The Great Dream - 1969

A Great Dream – 1969





My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address

7 thoughts on “The Chakras with the Tarot Keys

    • Tom, this is a deck based on the Rider-Waite, and Paul Foster Case developed it during the 1920s and 30s without some of the “blinds” which are in the Rider-Waite. It is the BOTA deck (Builders of the Adytum). You can order it from them (see link in my blog), it is also available in bookstores, etc. The deck comes uncoloured. You colour it yourself, following the instructions in the booklet. BOTA offer a superb correspondence course, covering every aspect of working and living with these Keys, and Kabbalah and Alchemy. They are based in L A. I have been doing it for 10 years.

  1. Brilliant ! Beautifully illustrated and explained ,so that even the novice will immediately grasp and integrate the intricacies of this” elder wisdom “.I love the comparison to musical notation and to the colours of the rainbow .!

    • Thank you Bridget, lovely to hear from you … Whoops ! I forgot to put in the solar-plexus-chakra Tarot Key The Wheel/Jupiter ! Thought something was missing. Now rectified.

      Yes, the sound and colour relation is ancient, and is taught by bota – it really wakes up the way we experience our world. Sound is the base of our physical universe, and the corresponding colours are the basis of the more subtle electro-magnetic wavelength. Their octaves sort of work together. I am just in early stage of studying this.

  2. Good evening, Jane! I have been admiring your blog for some weeks now…I’m doing online radio on Tarot and Qabalah, and tired of all the sociopoitical sword-rattling and fear-mongering, I’m talking about the spiritual necessity to become the “place of safety.” I’d really enjoy having you on as a guest, I think. Currently detailing the Tree of Life via the Rosicrucian Grades of Initiation, but I’m currently talking Philosophus, and you’re an expression of that which has come–been brought–to my attention. I’ve been at this for a little over a year now, weekly. Interested?

    • I emailed you a while ago. Thank you so much for mentioning Philosophus in your comment here. It was timely. After reading it, I opened Paul Foster Case’s book again on the Rosicrucean Order, to tune into Philosophus on the Tree, and … things fell into place.

  3. Pingback: The Chakras with the Tarot Keys | Hype Gnosis

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