The Hermit: The Hermaphroditic Source
The first and natural inclination in contemplating this Atus is to say that the Hermit is one who moves within. Of course, if you ruminate even further and have a mystical bend to your thoughts, you would recognize that the source of being is a movement from within to without. For this alone would you have obtained a rudimentary understanding of this Major Arcana card.
But let’s examine the two attributions that apply themselves to a deeper understanding. The first is the Hebrew letter Yod which translates as hand; the human hand and one that our race has employed quite brilliantly in fostering our evolution. Note that many traditions use the laying on of hands in healing. This is movement of energy from within the healer towards the diseased postulant.
Yod is the first letter of the Tetragrammaton and represents the highest world (Atziluth) in the Holy Qabalah. This is the archetypal realm of pure spirit wherein resides the sephira Kether–the ‘All Father’ which is hermaphroditic in composition and separates into its’ masculine and feminine components in the next two sephiroth. These three sephiroth denote the supernal triad above the Abyss on the Tree-of-Life.
Kether is the highest form of Mercury and in this form is the Logos or creator of all worlds. Yod being the first letter of the Tetragrammaton is the secret fire from whom all life originates. Also take note of the fact that all the letters of the Hebrew alphabet are formed by various combinations of Yod. Meditate on this and you will gain a better understanding of why the Hebrew alphabet is so important to Qabalists.
In the physical world, the Logos is the spermatozoon. Which alchemically, is recognized as the fluidic essence of light–the life of the universe. The Logos is the seed of life and the sperm is referred to in alchemy as the Red Dragon. It is the complete essence of life nurtured by the vaginal gluten.
And as the Hermit is Hermaphroditic, this Atu also has its feminine attribution. This is the attributing of Virgo an astrological earth sign represented in Greek mythology as Persephone. Attributed to Virgo are wheat and corn demarking this sign as a sign of fertility. And note also that Mercury is the planet the both rules Virgo and is exalted in that sign as well.
Conjointly these two attributions delineates the dual nature of that inner fire from which we come to understand ourselves. The Logos impregnates the earth and life swells to fruition. It is that hidden inner mystery which propels us forward into life and living that life. Contemplation upon this establishes the resolve that guides us in pursuit of establishing our individual destinies.