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VI. La Temperanza - Temperance

fire cat pickles

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fire cat pickles

Minchiate card deck - Florence - 1860-1890 - Trumps - 06 - La Temperanza
A. Baragioli (editor) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


The sixth card in the sequence, La Temperanza, occurs earlier on in the Minchiate Majors sequence than in the Golden Dawn's or OTO's, and it is one of the four Pagan (Cardinal) Virtues. Other systems don't have all four virtues as part of their systems, at least not literally. Where did Wisdom go with GD and OTO? Are we to assume that Hermit was once Wisdom or Prudence? What about Minchiate's Time in that case, then? And what happened to the Theological (Ecclesiastical) Virtues? Did GD and OTO lump these into the Hermit or spread them out into other cards, as well?


If we are to assume that these virtues did become deeply embedded within those other card system's meanings over time time; which most scholars agree precisely did happen;  conversely, with Minchiate the virtues are provided straightforward in its system, thankfully. As such they can be approached more in a more honest fashion in readings. This is part of the allure of the Minchiate for me, but it also poses a challenge. One way we can face this challenge is by grouping the Five Popes into subgroups by using a numbering system. 


Referring to the chart, we note that Temperance aligns with Il BagattoIn other words, Temperance is the 2nd Papa uno. Bagatto (the Magician, the Trickster, the Juggler) has developed into the figure of Temperance.  With Temperance, the character is no longer "juggling" physical items. In her hands is the stuff of the metaphysical realm, not the material. Where the Magician deals with the material world, now she has the immaterial in her hands. These are not the tools of a trickster, as the Magician seems only to playing with the children at his table.Temperance's tools are those of a professional.


The Magician has matured from dilettante mentalist into expert alchemist. We are ready to face the world! This card follows Love. Recall that Love was the step where we reevaluated where we were in life. (V. Amore could have just as well have been named "Life and Love"!) The decisions in Life were at a stopping point and were crucial for our future development. It signified where we were to go from here: life, love, happiness, future prospects including career, children, etc. With Love we reevaluated our creature comforts and home life.


Temperance is the second stage, where we continue to reevaluate, but on a spiritual level and higher plane. This is the first of Seven Virtues. We begin to ask probing questions of ourselves: Are we really able to go this alone?  Is that all there is? Are we alone? 




Edited by fire cat pickles
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I remember Williams calling the five highest trumps as the Arie. I like how you correlated them to Aristotle's five intellectual virtues though @fire cat pickles.


I find the correspondence satisfying, and if it were up to me I'd also relate them the same way. At first I was curious why you assigned Intuition to The Star, when it intuitively (heh) seems to be more apt for The Moon. But brushing up on Book VI of Aristotle's Ethics, it makes sense.


Intuition is Nous, which may also be worded as Understanding or Intelligence. Mental Brilliance: that does seem to be the province of La Stella. Sophia or Wisdom (more accurately Theoretical Wisdom) is for La Luna. In a way this is also apt. Sophia also covers how you process what you learned and the new knowledge that you thereby gain, much like The Moon reflects the light of The Sun. I guess in this case, The Sun is Episteme (Science or Scientific Knowledge), which nicely rounds up the three speculative intellectual virtues.


The final two trumps stand for the two practical intellectual virtues. The World is Phronesis: Practical Wisdom and yes, even Prudence. And finally we have Fame as Techne, or Expert Craftsmanship. 


I will be including these in my notes.

Edited by Akhilleus
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