The Self-Actualization Pyramids Spread
Basically there is the main pyramid in the center, and two smaller pyramids on each side. One is inverted.
Positions 1 – 3 represent where you have come from, or what has made you/shaped you on the various levels. Can be from environment, upbringing, schooling etc. A look at the past, but with more objectivity than is usually given when using tarot cards.
Positions 4 – 5 represent “who you are now.” May or may not make pleasant reading but hey, this is what this is about right?
Position 6 represents “who you could be.” Again it might or might not look good, but you can learn from that and change who you are now accordingly. (This is a bit like how Scrooge did things in "A Christmas Carol")
Positions 7-8 are your strengths. The light you have which can be bought to the forefront. What carries you and should not be hidden or unacknowledged.
Position 9 represents what you should be giving to yourself or creating within.
Position 10 – 11 represent personal areas for development or weaknesses. Again might not make good reading but if you look at your strengths first you will be able to see a balance is there and you can choose to focus on one side or the other… your choice. This is where you could really see how your shadow side comes into play.
Position 12 represents what you should be offering externally, or what you can bring to your world or others who inhabit that world.
Your Self-Actualization Pyramids Reading
|Base (past) #1
||Base (past) #2
||Base (past) #3
1: Base #1
10 of Wands
A man oppressed by the weight of the ten staves which he is carrying.
A card of many significances, and some of the readings cannot be harmonized. I set aside that which connects it with honour and good faith. The chief meaning is oppression simply, but it is also fortune, gain, any kind of success, and then it is the oppression of these things. It is also a card of false-seeming, disguise, perfidy. The place which the figure is approaching may suffer from the rods that he carries. Success is stultified if the Nine of Swords follows, and if it is a question of a lawsuit, there will be certain loss.
2: Base #2
A winged angel, with the sign of the sun upon his forehead and on his breast the square and triangle of the septenary. I speak of him in the masculine sense, but the figure is neither male nor female. It is held to be pouring the essences of life from chalice to chalice. It has one foot upon the earth and one upon waters, thus illustrating the nature of the essences. A direct path goes up to certain heights on the verge of the horizon, and above there is a great light, through which a crown is seen vaguely. Hereof is some part of the Secret of Eternal Life, as it is possible to man in his incarnation. All the conventional emblems are renounced herein.
So also are the conventional meanings, which refer to changes in the seasons, perpetual movement of life and even the combination of ideas. It is, moreover, untrue to say that the figure symbolizes the genius of the sun, though it is the analogy of solar light, realized in the third part of our human triplicity. It is called Temperance fantastically, because, when the rule of it obtains in our consciousness, it tempers, combines and harmonises the psychic and material natures. Under that rule we know in our rational part something of whence we came and whither we are going.
Economy, moderation, frugality, management, accommodation.
3: Base #3
Queen of Cups
Beautiful, fair, dreamy - as one who sees visions in a cup. This is, however, only one of her aspects; she sees, but she also acts, and her activity feeds her dream.
Good, fair woman; honest, devoted woman, who will do service to the Querent; loving intelligence, and hence the gift of vision; success, happiness, pleasure; also wisdom, virtue; a perfect spouse and a good mother.
4: Where you are now #1
10 of Pentacles
A man and woman beneath an archway which gives entrance to a house and domain. They are accompanied by a child, who looks curiously at two dogs accosting an ancient personage seated in the foreground. The child's hand is on one of them.
Gain, riches; family matters, archives, extraction, the abode of a family.
5: Where you are now #2
9 of Wands
The figure leans upon his staff and has an expectant look, as if awaiting an enemy. Behind are eight other staves - erect, in orderly disposition, like a palisade.
Obstacles, adversity, calamity.
6: Your potential
The variation from the conventional models in this card is only that the lamp is not enveloped partially in the mantle of its bearer, who blends the idea of the Ancient of Days with the Light of the World It is a star which shines in the lantern. I have said that this is a card of attainment, and to extend this conception the figure is seen holding up his beacon on an eminence. Therefore the Hermit is not, as Court de Gebelin explained, a wise man in search of truth and justice; nor is he, as a later explanation proposes, an especial example of experience. His beacon intimates that - where I am, you also may be.
It is further a card which is understood quite incorrectly when it is connected with the idea of occult isolation, as the protection of personal magnetism against admixture. This is one of the frivolous renderings which we owe to Eliphas Levi. It has been adopted by the French Order of Martinism and some of us have heard a great deal of the Silent and Unknown Philosophy enveloped by his mantle from the knowledge of the profane. In true Martinism, the significance of the term Philosophe inconnu was of another order. It did not refer to the intended concealment of the Instituted Mysteries, much less of their substitutes, but - like the card itself - to the truth that the Divine Mysteries secure their own protection from those who are unprepared.
Concealment, disguise, policy, fear, unreasoned caution.
7: Strength #1
3 of Swords
Three swords piercing a heart; cloud and rain behind.
Removal, absence, delay, division, rupture, dispersion, and all that the design signifies naturally, being too simple and obvious to call for specific enumeration.
8: Strength #2
5 of Swords
A disdainful man looks after two retreating and dejected figures. Their swords lie upon the ground. He carries two others on his left shoulder, and a third sword is in his right hand, point to earth. He is the master in possession of the field.
Degradation, destruction, revocation, infamy, dishonour, loss, with the variants and analogues of these.
9: Nurture this
8 of Cups
A man of dejected aspect is deserting the cups of his felicity, enterprise, undertaking or previous concern.
The card speaks for itself on the surface, but other readings are entirely antithetical - giving joy, mildness, timidity, honour, modesty. In practice, it is usually found that the card shews the decline of a matter, or that a matter which has been thought to be important is really of slight consequence - either for good or evil.
10: Weakness #1
8 of Pentacles
An artist in stone at his work, which he exhibits in the form of trophies.
Voided ambition, vanity, cupidity, exaction, usury. It may also signify the possession of skill, in the sense of the ingenious mind turned to cunning and intrigue.
11: Weakness #2
With light step, as if earth and its trammels had little power to restrain him, a young man in gorgeous vestments pauses at the brink of a precipice among the great heights of the world; he surveys the blue distance before him - its expanse of sky rather than the prospect below. His act of eager walking is still indicated, though he is stationary at the given moment; his dog is still bounding. The edge which opens on the depth has no terror; it is as if angels were waiting to uphold him, if it came about that he leaped from the height. His countenance is full of intelligence and expectant dream. He has a rose in one hand and in the other a costly wand, from which depends over his right shoulder a wallet curiously embroidered. He is a prince of the other world on his travels through this one - all amidst the morning glory, in the keen air. The sun, which shines behind him, knows whence he came, whither he is going, and how he will return by another path after many days. He is the spirit in search of experience. Many symbols of the Instituted Mysteries are summarized in this card, which reverses, under high warrants, all the confusions that have preceded it.
In his Manual of Cartomancy, Grand Orient has a curious suggestion of the office of Mystic Fool, as apart of his process in higher divination; but it might call for more than ordinary gifts to put it into operation. We shall see how the card fares according to the common arts of fortune-telling, and it will be an example, to those who can discern, of the fact, otherwise so evident, that the Trumps Major had no place originally in the arts of psychic gambling, when cards are used as the counters and pretexts. Of the circumstances under which this art arose we know, however, very little. The conventional explanations say that the Fool signifies the flesh, the sensitive life, and by a peculiar satire its subsidiary name was at one time the alchemist, as depicting folly at the most insensate stage.
Negligence, absence, distribution, carelessness, apathy, nullity, vanity.
12: Behavior to exhibit
Occult explanations attached to this card are meagre and mostly disconcerting. It is idle to indicate that it depicts min in all its aspects, because it bears this evidence on the surface. It is said further that it contains the first allusion to a material building, but I do not conceive that the Tower is more or less material than the pillars which we have met with in three previous cases. I see nothing to warrant Papus in supposing that it is literally the fall of Adam, but there is more in favour of his alternative - that it signifies the materialization of the spiritual word. The bibliographer Christian imagines that it is the downfall of the mind, seeking to penetrate the mystery of God. I agree rather with Grand Orient that it is the ruin of the House of We, when evil has prevailed therein, and above all that it is the rending of a House of Doctrine. I understand that the reference is, however, to a House of Falsehood. It illustrates also in the most comprehensive way the old truth that - except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it.
There is a sense in which the catastrophe is a reflection from the previous card, but not on the side of the symbolism which I have tried to indicate therein. It is more correctly a question of analogy; one is concerned with the fall into the material and animal state, while the other signifies destruction on the intellectual side. The Tower has been spoken of as the chastisement of pride and the intellect overwhelmed in the attempt to penetrate the Mystery of God; but in neither case do these explanations account for the two persons who are the living sufferers. The one is the literal word made void and the other its false interpretation. In yet a deeper sense, it may signify also the end of a dispensation, but there is no possibility here for the consideration of this involved question.
According to one account, the same in a lesser degree also oppression, imprisonment, tyranny.