4. The Emperor

Our second-tier Tarot resources weigh in on the Emperor as follows:

Stephan Hoeller writes:


“Commanding and regal, the Emperor sits on his rock-hewn throne . . . he rules over the world of matter and has mastered the strength to rise above it” (The Fool’s Pilgrimage 104).

Amber Jayanti weighs in as follows:

“The emperor is the part of you that’s observant, reasonable, organize, and disciplined, intimating that without these qualities, creativity is short circuited and doesn’t bear fruit” (Tarot for Dummies 80).

Joan Bunning adds:

“The Emperor represents structure, order and regulation – forces to balance the free-flowing, lavish abundance of the Empress” (Learning the Tarot 121).

A.E. Waite suggests the following are the characteristics of The Emperor: 

“Stability, power, protection, realization; a great person; aid, reason, conviction; also authority and will” and indicates that the Emperor has been described as “will in its embodied form” (The Pictorial Key to the Tarot).

This brings us closer to our Anonymous Author’s understanding, but P.D. Ouspensky comes closer still:

Card IV. — “The Emperor.”
“Tetragrammaton. The law of four. Latent energy of Nature. Logos in the full aspect with all possibilities of the new Logos. Hermetic philosophy” (  ).

“I am The Great Law,” the Emperor said. “I am the name of God. The four letters of his name are in me and I am in all.
“I am the Logos in the full aspect and the beginning of a new Logos.”

And while the Emperor spoke, his helmet shone brighter and brighter, and his golden armour gleamed beneath his mantle. I could not bear his glory and I lowered my eyes.

When I tried to lift them again a vivid light of radiant fire was before me, and I prostrated myself and made obeisance to the Fiery Word (Symbolism of the Tarot).

Additional second and third tier materials may be added from time to time…  Click here for the primary study guide on the Emperor…

preview 04. The Emperor

small5.2 The  Pope


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