Nodens, a water God, represents the boundaries of, and the transcendence through, matter and the material walls of existence. Where the element is Wind, Nodens stands between the Wind and the calm state of the Earth. Where the boundary is stone, Nodens stands between the stone and the freedom of the open sky. He is, therefore, the mediation between stone, which cannot be passed through, and the sky, to which there is no boundary. Therefore Nodens can be seen as the axis between the mundane acceptance of our reality, and the reality of humanity and that which we create. The occult is a much greater part of our lives than any of us realise, and Nodens represents this as a Gateway for the occultist.
In interpreting this Card, the issue of boundaries has come to me as being obviously the main issue. Nodens, however, is the Card of the Tarot that equates to The Star in other Decks, and therefore this must be considered to be a misinterpretation in the context of the Lovecraftian. I wrote a long definition as to how Nodens represents barriers and issues in life that cannot be taken further. The definition here is, however, wrong. Nodens, as a Card of the Tarot (except in its Negative sense, described below), can only indicate good, so I have had to come back to this after some study, with a different definition of Card 17. The problem came from the idea that the HP Lovecraft Tarot is more sinister than certain other Decks, although the Tarot as a complete system does still have to follow tradition.
“Amidst the deepest darkness, a ray of hope will… be present for those who seek it” states our system. In the Worship of the Gods of this Mythos, our religion is involved far more with the acceptance of the Great Old Ones as the astral forces of infinite insanity, and (in turn) Their involvement with the evil of mankind. To draw Card 17, therefore, is to equate that there may be a diversion from our fixation with darkness; and that this may be an omen of luck in a time where it may be needed. In this sense this Card continues as with interpretations of all other Tarot systems. “[L]ight will shine for all with an honest Will to Receive it”, continues the Introductory Book to the Lovecraft system. “[I]t is amidst the Saturnine depths of human action that… the greatest light shines.” To define this Card, therefore, Nodens in a Positive Reading here is entirely good, and indicates the very real possibility that we will receive some form of divine inspiration as reward for our dedicated worship of the Cosmic Forces.
From this statement that defines the point of the Card directly, the Tarot continues to define its terms, saying that “it is the purest light which turns the Lead of Saturn into Lunar Silver and Solar Gold.” It is my interpretation that this statement is in relation to the users of magick through the ages of Man, and their construction of ritual items of magick through worship. The Great Old Ones have infinite faces, and it is through such Lunar Silver and Solar Gold that They have been summoned throughout the existence of our race. “Only when the Darkness draws Nyarlathotep out… can Nodens vanquish him…” Whilst Nyarlathotep is our God of communication, the evil of the Old Ones must always be considered, and we now have Nodens entering the stage as an esoteric form of protection. This continues to equate with all other interpretations of the Tarot, as this Deck equates specifically to our religion.
As this paragraph ends the Introduction to this Card, we have a statement as concerns the seasons of the year. This may not be in line with the religion of the R’Lyeh, but hints that maybe the Card of Nodens has had thought from the Cults of the Druids; as the Star is good. “As the constellations turn, and the seasons change… not all is Winter.” The Star, as represented by Nodens, then, tells of good things that result from the course of worship.
POSITIVE READING: Despite the fact that the worship of the Lovecraftian Gods is directly Satanic and oriented around the power of insanity, Card 17 can still have an equation with every other traditional Deck. Therefore – as with every other Deck – a Positive Reading with this Card can be nothing bad, and pulling it from the Deck here represents that good things are forecast. The statement “Hope, promise [and] faith” is an example of such things when this Card is drawn, and the Lovecraft Tarot continues that it represents “confidence [and] security amidst apparent hardship.”
As the Introduction continues in this manner, Card 17 may be representative of ourselves and of our attitude to life as positive things come into our lives, as ultimately they sometimes do. This may be the issue to consider as the Introductory Book continues that “harvest, reward; profit realised after work & investment; gain & advantage” is defined. In my own opinion, something that occurs to me at this point is that the HP Lovecraft Tarot continues in respect that what we take from the occult is directly related to what we put in. I suppose the point here would be that each person must gain from the worship we put in, or otherwise what would be the purpose of continuing to worship?
In regard to the line that Card 17 is as much about our attitude to what is happening in our own lives, the Lovecraft Tarot justifies this when it defines a Positive Reading as signifying “laughter in the face of threats; endurance [and] tolerance.” As with all aspects of the occult, it is our attitude to the games that the occult challenges us with, that is really the most important issue.
NEGATIVE READING: Whilst Card 17, Nodens, equates with the Tarot system of the Star, this is a Card that is most properly equated with good. However, it is always possible that any Card can appear as Negative in a spread, and this is also defined in the Lovecraft Deck of the Tarot. But in the context of a Negative Reading here, Nodens is as much about attitude in this sense, as with the Positive. “Insecurity, lack of faith; surrender to fears, hopelessness; despair despite stability” are all symptoms here, as defined by the HP Lovecraft Tarot; but it should be remembered that if this is symbolised by Nodens, it may be more due to our lack of balance and earthing in the occult that is the reason. Our Tarot continues to say that “disadvantage, weakness; loss of position, loss of confidence; loss of illusionary advantage and / or loss of power” is indicated. Again, this can often be down to the same thing – problems with spiritual balance and earthing – although the issue here is probably more to do with our image and perception of ourselves.
It is in terms of our self-image, as thereby defined, then, that the Negative interpretation of this Card is continued. It is in terms of attitude that we should consider the explanation in the Introductory Book that comes with this Deck, as defining “submission to doubts; worries, complaints, qualms, hesitance, uncertainty [and] indescision.” Again we find the Tarot telling us that it is our perspective that is the important issue, and we should look to our attitude if we are worshiping the Cthulhu Mythos, as we must look inwardly if we are to understand the mysteries of Cosmic Space.