With most systems of the Tarot, the interpretations given by most Decks are similar; this meaning that readings are usually quite straightforward. The Lovecraft version, however, gives interpretations which, due to their strange meanings within the context of what is often called the ‘Lovecraftian’, are totally different from any resemblance of any more ‘normal’ interpretation. This is to say that the interpretations in the HP Lovecraft Tarot are totally aside from any interpretation given by any other system; and this is because the context in which the Lovecraft Tarot stands, is quite strange and bizarre; in this sense being unique in the study of a God system which diverges from any sane perspective usually taken by humanity. The Tarot forecasts the future, but the Lovecraft system interprets the Tarot from the perspective and understanding of madness.
This idea concerning the interpretation given by the HP Lovecraft Tarot is an appropriate idea when we talk of Card 9, then, as The Hermit in traditional Tarot is concerned with ideas of spiritual meaning spelled out, and with ideas of guidance in terms of the occult and learning in regard to worship as relevant to everyday life. This idea of the definition of the Great Race of Yith, and the meaning of the Hermit as a part of the Tarot, are both considered when we quote our reference to the system:
“The Hermit is wise and all knowing and is sometimes referred to as the Ancient of Days… [H]e is… a guide for those spiritual travellers who are climbing the mystic mountain… His lantern provides… inspiration… guiding them ever closer to their goal of union with the divine… [H]is final goal of mystical union… is firmly in his mind… the lamp he holds aloft illuminating the pathway for all spiritual seekers… This Card is associated with solitude and contemplation – the spiritual journey is all-important in your life at this time… [T]his card signifies that you may meet someone who will become your spiritual guide… It also signifies a willingness… to accept help when it is offered… [T]he spiritual path is long and arduous and there are no easy solutions. Use your powers of discrimination and discernment in moving forward, and trust the light and wisdom of your own inner guidance.” (The Tarot Workbook, Neville Drury)*.
If that explains the definition of The Hermit then, the Lovecraft Tarot considers its own definition – though – putting the same precept in terms of things much more weird.
In talking about the Great Race of Yith as the ‘mind parasite’, the Tarot describes a fantastic and beautiful concept to be part of the literature of the Lovecraftian, and as relates to our religious perception as Their worship. And as part of our system of the Tarot, the concept behind the Great Race of Yith as any sort of existence that can be interpreted through any definition of Tarot, set aside our interpretation of the Lovecraft Deck, is more obvious as they accord to Card 9 as a bizarre form of logic and organization. “Unbound by time, unfettered by physical form, comes [the] Great Mind, always working towards the survival of the species”. This may have some meaning in terms of forecasting future situations, but is hardly something that would be obvious as seen as being The Hermit.
If this is to be the case, then, our interpretation of Card 9 should not attempt to repeat the ideas that repeat through so many systems of Tarot. The Hermit in the HP Lovecraft Tarot speaks of a system of the cosmos that exists within our religious belief, rather then that definition of The Hermit which stands as the same in every previous definition. Whether or not it is a good thing that the Lovecraft Tarot should go as far as to define a meaning in this context is one thing, but this book is written to expand on the Lovecraftian ideas in occult systems and the Tarot, so it should be right for me to go on to define this Card as accords to this specific study.
Again this study is bizarre in the points here explained, and what, exactly, the Tarot means when it defines the ‘Great Mind’; we are not exactly sure (although the mentality of the Great Race of Yith as being insect might well come into the picture). But if the ideas of Aliestair Crowley and the mind are to be considered (as is discussed more in Part II), then we should make this as a point, and consider the term as relating more to psychick training as involved with the practice of ceremonial magick. This statement should therefore be taken into account by the examples of Necronomicon magick when using this system of worship.
The Great Mind of the Yith and the mentality of the worshipper can be united as one issue with this statement, though. “This ‘Great Mind’ sees from a vantage point which is simultaneously in the distant past and the far future.” If the Magus is to use his or her mind correctly, it becomes at one with the practicioner eventually, and the ideas of the Lovecraftian become issues to accept from the higher spheres. Speaking of the frame of mind entered into by followers of these spheres of magick as discussed in this book, the Tarot tells us that “[T]his concept… is one which is not bound by the normal limits of perception… it exists… to provide a mental state of freedom from these limitations*.”
But the trained mind of the Magus is one thing, whilst the collective mind of the masses is now brought into the equation as the Introductory Book to our Deck brings psychoanalysis into the picture. The works of Jung are now brought into the scene as it continues in discussing the Great Mind in its own terms*. “While Jung spoke of a Collective Unconscious, the Great Mind is a Collective Consciousness, a place of… perception of the multiverse which is not restricted by boundaries of perception.” The singular mind of the Queen as the centre of insect intelligence around which all congregates is compared to human society, here, and whilst the mind of man is still as singular as any insect, on these terms the Tarot tells us that our thought can be seen as being collected into one singular mass. In this sense the Collective Unconsciousness is “unconstrained by the views of Time or Space particular to the physical senses of a specific biological organism.” So, whilst the individual has a perception of these issues, the ‘Great Mind’ which is the united thought force of humanity, has no perception of this. It is one static mass.
What this means in terms relevant to the study of The Necronomicon in magick is that we should be in tune with the ‘Great Mind’ as the higher force of our thought as it relates to the occult. “Too many people… have let… their identities or self images… [be] defined by the limited perception of a Lesser Mind.” To us as a religious Temple, then, a proper understanding of our own higher self is very important, and we accept this from the Lovecraft Tarot, that studies of psychick thought forces are valuable as part of our system of ritual magick. If “churches, governments, etc. – have usually been able to assimilate such abstract concepts into their philosophies”, it should not be too difficult to demonstrate to them the justification behind our beliefs, and then challenge the dogmatic views of authority.
POSITIVE READING: Making this equation between The Great Race of Yith and The Hermit of other Decks has not been easy, but hopefully the above will put the above into a better perspective. How this Card works in the particular context of the Lovecraftian system does not seem immediately to be any more straightforward, and with this system being very unique in the Tarot as a system of magick, terms should be defined regarding this Card in our particular system that regards the worship of the Great Old Ones in space and time. But despite the nature as this as the fact involved with a study of a Tarot such as this, the authors of the HP Lovecraft Deck have done a good job in equating such a bizarre system as represented by The Necronomicon, and the more traditional system of the Cards.
So if that says enough as regards how this Card should be read to define The Hermit in terms as we discuss here, the meaning of this Card to the Magus fits in with the greater system, defining The Great Race of Yith when drawn in a Reading, as representing “Identification of the personal Will with the shared ideals of a particular social group; participation in social works.” Perhaps this statement says something about how the Yith are interpreted in this context as well as with the relevance that this statement has in obvious terms of our own lives?
If this should be the place to describe the Great Race of Yith as relates to The Hermit, as an intercosmological Race, the mind of the Yith is quite vastly removed from the thinking of the human mind. The Yith are a highly developed entity within the cosmos, and despite the travel of space and time which is to them something that is taken quite for granted; Their minds work more like the intelligence owned by the insects; although those races of insects which inhabit our world do not have nearly the intelligence of that owned by the Yith. This needs to be understood as the equation is made with the Lovecraft system, as to how The Hermit and the Great Race of Yith combine as to the concept behind that of the tenth Card.
The insect mind of the Great Race of Yith becomes more defined, now, as the Tarot predicts a situation of “humility, submission to the Will of others for the sake of a common objective [and] negation of self for a particular end”. When races of insects are studied, comparison can often be made with humanity and the failing of our own social structures. This statement does not concern the thinking of humanity, then, as the Yith are hereby defined as The Hermit as a thinking above the mentality of our race. So if this statement points to what could be an event within our own lives, this is stated as being the situation as regards the social organization of a Race which perceive reality and the Cosmos in absolute different terms.
This idea of the instinctive cycles of insects as opposed to the organization of mankind is continued as the Lovecraft Tarot defines a “natural emergence into a leadership role within a fluid group dynamic; the ability to relinquish the same at the proper time”. As the insects follow a natural cycle of birth, reproduction and death, the Great Race of Yith stand to represent this as a foreign form of mentality. The thinking of the Yith is above that, though, being massively far advanced beyond the insects that dominate our planet. So when this ‘natural emergence’ is something quite solid as regards the cycles of insects, with this Card it is more concerned with the cycles of Earth that we as people take for granted. With Card 9 we see it that the Lovecraft system is unique and more advanced. The HP Lovecraft Tarot is infinitely more bizarre than any other system; and in writing this book to define it on its own terms, complex definitions such as this do have to be thought about sometimes, if a proper study of the Lovecraft Deck is the intention.
NEGATIVE READING: The Great Race of Yith are a super – intelligent, albeit not entirely supernatural, race of creatures who posses mass technology, as in the normal sense, but also with the ability to travel time. This is the thinking of the Great Race of Yith, with their minds being as different from humanity, as we are to the insects, that everything they posses should be sent back to themselves five million years ago, as everything they aquire in such terms is in turn sent forward to that point. This, in terms of the Tarot, then, makes the situation more straightforward. Not much is about to change if we see the Great Race of Yith in these terms. If this entire Mythos of which we speak, can be considered as representing ‘evil’, then the Great Race of Yith should be considered the same, even if with them it is more in terms of Their perception as an alien mentality*.
In having so far related the Great Race of Yith to the ‘insect mind’, the representation here defined can also relate to the breakdown of social structures. The mind of this Race is no more logical than any other entity in the Lovecraft system of Tarot. “Loss of self and / or personal identity to the will of the group; identity based entirely on social standing or recognitions” is defined. Whilst the laws of the insects represent order, the concept defined as the Great Race of Yith can also destroy a persons place in society, and with this system it can also be without warning.
With the mentality of the insects, but with a mind more developed than that of human kind, Mythos literature describes the sociology of the Great Race as being a highly organized system close to that of socialism, but with a system of production closer to that of the insects than any other society. Their social organization is therefore quite alien to human understanding, but the Great Old Ones still govern the Cosmos, and Their way of understanding is also this strange.
But with these terms set out, we can see the Lovecraft Tarot as comparing the ideas of insect communities to the eccentric social behaviour of mankind. The cultures of the insects may be one thing, but with the Great race of Yith we confront this as a vastly more developed thing. The statement “Withdrawl or retreat from greatness” compares social standing as an issue of day – to – day life, but if an insect were to withdraw from its position as part of the hive, it could only be because it were no longer able to uphold its purpose to the greater community. The Yith work more like this, but – as has been pointed out – Their technology puts them as being far further evolved than regards the resources that we have on this Planet as humanity.
The comparison with the Tarot and the insect mind stops here, however, and the Lovecraft system carries on with statements of forecast that cannot really be compared with this way of thinking as is held by the Yith. This Negative Reading continues to define the meaning here as relates to The Hermit. It should be taken as a general rule, then, that if drawing on the Tarot for predictions with this Card, that these statements reflect the situation from quite a bizarre perspective, as has now been discussed.
All of these points should be held into account when the Tarot defines itself in more straightforward human terms, now, as “false humility, fear of success; fear of selfhood [and] self sabotage” are defined as issues we could come across in the context of a Reading. It is probably more relevant to the mind of the Great Race of Yith, then, as this entry to the Tarot ends in speaking in such terms as discussed here, predicting a possible situation of “Selfishness, self absorbtion; megolamania, unhealthy assumption of power, coup; inability to let go of power”. Obviously, looking at a society such as the Great Race of Yith, social standing is assumed as being as important to survival, as is the reason for the worship of such occult systems by humanity.
* This statement from Neville Drury’s ‘The Tarot Workbook’ is the longest statement from the book to be used in this reference. In using it we define the nature of The Hermit in every other Deck, as the system used is more closely representing the former more traditional versions of the Tarot.
* At this point it should be made clear that the author is using the concept of the HP Lovecraft system to put forward a system of ritual magick. Many of the points made in this book do not directly equate with the HP Lovecraft system as it stands on its own; it is our intention to use the Tarot as an initiatory statement for those who take it upon themselves to study The Necronomicon and Its system of magick.
* The ideas of the Psychiatrist CG Jung come very much into our interpretation of the Tarot.
* The entire Mythos of which we speak of here, is of course alien as well, but we see the Great Race of Yith as being specific within this meaning as They are more related to the mind of man, than that of the Great Old Ones, being more esoteric parts of the Cosmos. The idea of the ‘insect mind’ is here appropriate, then.