These are components of the story that I see as having potential for "real life" occult practice - e.g. for chaos magicians or similar interested parties.
This is the Tenebrae equivalent of tarot, runes, etc., which I have developed from a combination of those systems. I envision the Tenebrae oracle as consisting in runic sigils, painted on wooden chips or small flat stones or cards or etc. For the purposes of the topic at hand, I will use the term "rune" to refer to the symbols illustrated below, and refer to the combination of those symbols that appears on a single card/chip/stone as a "stone."
Each stone in the Tenebrae oracle displays one or more runes. Tenebrae runes can be classified as three types: Archetypes, Paths and Roles.
- Archetypes (appear on a stone by themselves)
- These are equivalent to the major arcana in the tarot, but there are 28 of them (conventionally numbered 0 to 27) instead of 22. (The Thrones of the Archons diagram illustrates how this number is derived.) Archetypes are generally indicative of major, spiritually-significant events.
- Paths (appear on a stone together with either a number from 1 to 10, or a Role rune)
- Paths refer to four trajectories that an individual's earthly life can take. In Necroknosticism, it is thought that which Path one is on affects what will happen to one's soul after death: reincarnation (mercy or matter paths), ascent to the upper worlds (spirit path) or an unfortunate fate as a ghost or gaki (severity path). Every individual is on a particular Path by default, but it is possible to change this, with Archetypes sometimes being taken as formative situations that can cause a change from one Path to another. When a Path appears on a stone, it will usually be accompanied by a number from 1 to 10, indicating a situation that is a typical component of that path. (The exception is when a Path rune appears as part of a Role, as discussed in the next section.) Paths are thus equivalent to the minor arcana in the tarot.
- Roles (appear on a stone together with a Path rune)
- Roles refer to specific individuals, and are thus similar to the court cards in tarot. Most simplistically, Roles can be used to indicate someone known to the person consulting the oracle, e.g. "Adult" (Role) + "Spirit" (Path) = An adult who is on the path of spirit. But each Role + Path combination also has additional attributes, providing some degree of flexibility in interpretation.
As with other divination systems, there are many different methods by which the oracle can be consulted, ranging from drawing a single stone, to drawing several and arranging them in a pattern.
- Qolith (Unmanifest) - Origin
- Pure potentiality.
+ All doors are open.
- Too little information to make useful predictions.
- Antl (Grass) - sorcerer
- Childlike wonder and intuitive insight.
+ Clear perception via lack of preconceptions.
- Naivety and idealism.
- Byrk (Plough) - Wizard
- Self-empowerment through discipline and vision.
+ Strong will and ability to take constructive action.
- Overestimation of self. Mind over heart.
- Gral (Flower) - Witch
- Inner complexity. Connection to others.
+ Intuitive wisdom. Benefiting from passivity.
- Losing oneself in others. Heart over mind.
- Dolth (Door) - Mother / Goddess
- Nurturing and abundance.
+ Mercy, compassion, respect, flourishing.
- Demands that are threatening to the individual ego.
- Isll (Wall) - Daemon
- Distinguishing self from others, but with constructive intent.
+ Balance between cooperation & individuality.
- Others perceive oneself as a threat.
- Helg (Roof) - Father / God
- Benevolent but firm leadership.
+ Good decision-making and effective management.
- Risk of self-aggrandizement.
- Vow (Dagger) - Priest
- Tradition, upholding a legacy.
+ Fitting in to a group.
- Conformity, blind faith.
- Xin (Weed) - Heretic
- Rejecting the old & embracing the new.
+ Exploration of fresh ideas.
- Chaotic lack of structure, pointless rebellion.
- Zalg (Bannner) - Lovers
- A call for commitment.
+ Respect for diversity, good compromise.
- Threats to independence, emotionally-fraught decisions.
- Chet (Heat) - Evocatrix / Messenger
- Enthusiasm, energy, inspiring others.
+ A phase of intense progress.
- Pressure to succeed, fleeting time.
- Fehl (Monument) - Aristocrat
- Material stability and social prestige.
+ Winning, staying on top, being recognized.
- Fear of change, spiritual shallowness, feeling haunted.
- Tharu (Hurricane) - Monster
- Purposeful destruction that achieves its aim
+ Drastic but necessary action.
- Uncontrolled malice, nihilism, sabotage.
- Ngia (Stone) - Parasite
- Concealing vulnerabilities and manipulating others.
+ Intrigue, drama, successful scheming.
- Co-dependence, a sick soul.
- Teir (Spear) - Strength
- Determination, power without ostentation.
+ Drawing on inner reserves, being the "bigger person."
- Stubbornness, wasted energy.
- Ywaz (Sacrament) - Wisdom
- Purification through asceticism.
+ Withdrawal leading to better self-understanding.
- Burning bridges, losing touch.
- Kean (Hand) - Fortune
- Novelty without obvious advantage or disadvantage.
+ Improved luck, change for the better.
- Diminished luck, change for the worse.
- Lamu (River) - Justice
- Washing away useless debris from the past.
+ Satisfactory conclusion, new resolution.
- A warning against the desire to cling.
- Maniph (Gate) - Initiation
- Death/rebirth, learning from adversity.
+ Gaining secret knowledge, becoming more responsible.
- Tribulation, suffering due to non-acceptance.
- Nuth (Tomb) - Death
- Things coming to their natural conclusion.
+ Release from old patterns, closure.
- Loss looms larger than new opportunities.
- Saol (Lightning) - Alchemy
- Moderation, self-discipline, balance.
+ A time of awakened insight & meaningful coincidence.
- A demand to pay attention to spiritual matters.
- Eyin (Trap) - Decadence
- Self-indulgence, luxury, doing the easy thing.
+ Short-term enjoyment.
- Weak and/or useless behavior.
- Perh (Earthquake) - Catastrophe
- Crisis; sudden and unexpected collapse.
+ Unanticipated relief from imposition.
- Anxiety, despair, total upheaval.
- Waji (Wand) - Inspiration
- New hope, a sign from the heavens.
+ Clarifying realizations, a life-changing project.
- Possibility of major disappointment.
- Uruq (Darkness) - Dream
- Mystery and imagination.
+ Encounters with the sublime.
- Deception, delusion, hidden danger.
- Rais (Light) - Awakening
- Return to a sober, conscious, rational state.
+ Simplicity, being rewarded for good decisions.
- Lack of excitement, stuck in the mundane.
- Jhir (Soul) - Revelation
- Enlightenment, an urgent call, a reckoning.
+ Reward of good and punishment of evil.
- Fanatical behavior, victim-blaming.
- Olith (Manifest) - World
- Full manifestation of the divine, destiny fulfilled.
+ Unity, completion, success.
- Anxiety about the significance of one's life.
- Path of Spirit
- Associated with growth, self-evolution, skill, progress, success, sorcery.
- Adventure: An opportunity for new experiences.
- Resolution: Bold steps forward; a new partnership.
- Challenge: Success against an obstacle, acquisition of new skills.
- Goal: Peace and prosperity, enjoying results of one's efforts.
- Conflict: Competition and disagreement, but with potentially constructive results.
- Success: Recognition and respect from others.
- Courage: A bold risk that pays off.
- Haste: Excessive eagerness that harms one's own interests; arrogance.
- Liberation: Rejecting conformity and inspiring others.
- Oppression: Abusing the power or success one has obtained.
- Path of Matter
- Associated with stability, material loss and gain, objects, wizardry.
- Abundance: Receiving something new such as an object or gift.
- Duality: Having to balance two elements without rejecting either.
- Artistry: Demonstrated competence, hard work paying off.
- Lack: Dissatisfaction despite apparent success.
- Distress: Sudden hard times; fear and insecurity.
- Reward: Receiving help because of a previous good deed.
- Progress: Gradual improvement in fortune; a call for patience.
- Completion: Finishing a project and moving on confidently.
- Acceptance: Making peace with impermanence; absence of envy.
- Happiness: Total satisfaction with material matters.
- Path of Mercy
- Associated with desire, emotional loss and gain, relationships, witchcraft.
- Pleasure: A new, positive emotional experience.
- Love: A new or reinforced relationship or friendship.
- Comfort: Support from loved ones, healing of wounds.
- Weariness: Past baggage, inability to appreciate the present.
- Regret: Disappointment with others, self-blame.
- Boon: An unexpected or undeserved gift.
- Delusion: Self-deception, over-analysis.
- Loss: Closure re: the end of a relationship.
- Joy: A sense that all of one's wishes have come true.
- Bliss: A deep and lasting emotional commitment.
- Path of Severity
- Associated with obstacles, suffering, challenge, difficult lessons, necromancy.
- Insight: A new idea or new perspective on a situation.
- Indecision: Having to decide between two mutually-exclusive things.
- Cruelty: Betrayal, cold-heartedness, disregard for others.
- Release: Respite from a stressful or difficult situation.
- Defeat: Loss and humiliation; inability to defend oneself.
- Journey: Strong action to overcome obstacles.
- Risk: Doing a thing that one already knows is a mistake.
- Trap: Lack of options, paralyzing indecision.
- Torment: Feeling ostracized; self-defeating behavior.
- Ruin: Realization of worst-case scenario.
- Sceptre - Elders
- Represents mature figures whose behavior is oriented toward leadership.
- Spirit: Someone creative, honest and compassionate, but also impulsive.
- Matter: An experienced and reliable leader, tending toward conservatism.
- Mercy: A well-rounded person that others can easily ask too much of.
- Severity: Authoritarian figure with black-and-white view of the world.
- Mirror - Adults
- Represents mature figures whose behavior is oriented toward cooperation.
- Spirit: Someone who inspires by example but may expect too much of others.
- Matter: Someone both nurturing and practical, but occasionally complacent.
- Mercy: A person who gives totally in love, but thus easily hurt.
- Severity: Intensely independent person, intelligent but harshly judgmental.
- Key - Initiates
- Represents youthful individuals who are active and/or dynamic.
- Spirit: An idealist who is energetic and well-meaning, but hard on themselves.
- Matter: A responsible person who is patient, but somewhat dull.
- Mercy: Someone artistically inclined, but overprotective of their own freedom.
- Severity: Someone bold and capable, but quick to assume the worst about others.
- Lock - Children
- Represents youthful individuals who are passive and/or receptive.
- Spirit: Someone eager to succeed, but therefore lacking in caution.
- Matter: A curious, open-minded individual who is perhaps too tolerant.
- Mercy: Someone imaginative and receptive, but occasionally gossipy.
- Severity: A clever person who loves drama and attention.
Last update: December 31, 2012
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