A Female Pope: The Tarot’s answer to the Catholic Church’s sex scandals

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tarot-popeThe Catholic Church is in deep trouble with its priests’ sex scandals. It appears some church authorities tried to cover up clergy pedophilia to protect the church’s reputation, and the cover-up has reached the highest ranks of the Catholic Church. Which begs the question…why does the Church have this problem to begin with? How did this happen? Protestant churches have their share of sex scandals, but these usually involve pastors cheating on their wives, not molesting children.

high-priestess

Modern version of the Popess

The Tarot actually has something to say about the Catholic Church’s problem with sex. The Tarot of Marseilles is one of the oldest versions of the tarot, and it existed from at least the fifteenth century when the Catholic Church was both an overwhelming political and religious power. The imagery on the tarot clearly reflected their times, which included the Catholic world.

The Tarot of Marseilles’ viewpoint of the church is quite heretical. And it appears to have an opinion about sex and the Catholic Church. This is apparent from the infamous card number 2, the female Pope. Later versions of the tarot removed explicit Catholic imagery and transformed the Popess into the High Priestess. This is an appropriate reworking of the essence of the card’s meaning; the Popess/High Priestess represents alternative, nontraditional spirituality.

What does a tarot card about a female Pope suggest? It would be considered sacrilege, blasphemy, and heresy, anti-God. And exactly why is the idea of a female pope (or priest) so awful? That is a good question. I can’t think of a good reason. Sort of like the logic behind denying women the right to vote a century ago. What were they thinking back then?

tarot-viewpointLining up the first six cards of the tarot in numerical order, we notice something interesting. Watch the eyes of the characters in the cards. Who is looking at whom? Compare card #1, the Juggler and card #2, the Lady Pope. The female Pope is looking intently, directly at the Juggler, who seems preoccupied at playing with his juggling. She is offering her Juggler the book she holds, the key to knowledge. Instead of learning to juggle, learn to read, and begin the journey towards enlightenment.

The next two cards are the Empress and the Emperor. The Empress gives a sly glance at the Emperor, but the Emperor’s full attention is directly focused on his Empress. This is the path of life, woman and man, wife and husband, the reason for our existence…the continuation of the human species. It is the natural order and cannot be denied.

The following two cards are card #5 the Pope, and card #6 the Lovers. Now this is an odd pair. The Pope is looking directly at the Lovers card, not at the pair of cardinals before him. What is up with that? I’d suggest that a celibate priesthood’s internal, subconscious focus would be on that which they don’t have…love, sex, and a relationship. The medieval Pope was the master of the Western world, above all kings and queens. But without love, what did it matter? The Pope gazes longingly at that which even he is denied. Or was he really denied? Hmmm.

This might explain something of the Catholic Church’s problem. Is it a surprise an institution that requires a celibate priesthood would have priests with sexual issues? Has any institution that denied human nature done so without consequences?

popess-and-popeIf we place the Popess and the Pope side by side, what do we see? One thing is obvious; they are NOT looking at each other, but are determinedly looking away from each other. They are not on the same page. The Popess is reading a book, and being an outcast her knowledge is self-learned. She does not depend on other’s interpretation of scripture, but decides for herself. She exists outside the traditional religious power structure. The Pope in the card is telling his bishops kneeling before him what to think.  Maybe what the Catholic Church needs is a woman’s touch, with women sharing leadership.  We need a woman pope.  Life requires balance, and the Church is unbalanced.  A female Pope is the Tarot’s answer to the church’s problems.

7 Responses to “A Female Pope: The Tarot’s answer to the Catholic Church’s sex scandals”

  1. Stephanie Says:

    Interesting line of reasoning. I think you might be on to something there.

  2. David Says:

    Hi Stephanie,
    I think the Catholic Church needs a woman’s touch. I can’t imagine a woman pope would tolerate a child molesting clergy. I say if a woman can vote, they can be pope!
    Dave

  3. Jim Says:

    There are quite a few sick women in the world as well, though!

    The Church has always been a haven for gays, pedophiles, the perverted and in some cases the downright wicked (I have absolutely nothing against gays, by the way). If the Church still had control of the World, like it did for over 1000 years, then we would still be ignorant peasants living in the dark ages.

    After the renaissance when people became more educated, the Church’s popularity declined, and hopefully this will continue. All that Religion has ever brought to this World is problems, anyway.

    We lost out on over 1000 years of education because of this corrupt organisation. But they who have the power control the World, and its destiny!

  4. Zera Says:

    I believe priests should have been allowed to be married and have families, just like other religions. It makes them more balanced in todays world. Alot of problems might have been prevented if they had families of their own. Proven fact the apostles had wives and were dedicated.

  5. Linda Says:

    There has supposedly been a female pope who reigned for a few years sometime in the Middle Ages. She was known as Pope Joan. The story first appeared in the writing of 13th century chroniclers and spread throughout Europe. She apparently disguised herself as a man during her reign but gave the game away when she gave birth to a child!

    It was believed for centuries but modern day historians tend to disbelieve it.

  6. Christian Vendor Space Says:

    Every religion has basic rules that makes either an advantage or disadvantage to their members. As for changes in how a religion is already set, we’re too far from reaching it.

  7. Quotes About Life Says:

    BRAVO! Brilliant Insight. I know so many people who have become disillusioned because of the Catholic Church and all this scandal. I cannot wait to show this post to my wife, she will get a kick out of this since she studies all kinds of religions.

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