The overall theme or lesson of DEATH lunar cycle of full moon in Taurus is immortality. It takes seriously the premise of the survival of the personality after death a premise supported by established institutions of knowledge from stagnant religious dogmas to scientific theories relating to energies' indestructible properties. Everyone I have ever known regardless of philosophy has had some weird unexplainable story of contact with the dead.
Hathor is sometimes called "Gate of the Tomb" and as the Full Moon in Taurus she is a doorway to the dark months of winter. Hathor is the celestial cow bearing the moon between her horns.
She is spangled with stars and her legs are the four pillars of heaven. Kings of later dynasties were often portrayed standing between her forelegs, as if within a gate, above which the moon-disk is raised upon her horns.
This Goddess is sometimes portrayed as a pillar with a capital of a horned head. She is also depicted between cleft mountains, as the horned gate dividing mountains, as death/sleep, and the awakening sun. She is the mountain enclosing the cave-tomb. (See “Awakening Osiris: A New Translation of the Egyptian Book of the Dead” by Normandie Ellis, 1988, Phanes Press)
At Çatal Hüyük, Turkey the goddess Cybele is depicted seated between two felines, her throne the high mountain peak where heaven meets earth. The "All-Begetting Mother, who beats a drum to mark the rhythm of life." Her most important symbol is her frame drum, representing the moon, and the primordial egg of Creation. The beat of her drum is the pulse of life, the heartbeat of the Earth Mother. Cybele holds her red frame drum in her left hand, and from her right hand she pours forth libation from her lotus bowl. The Lotus bowl, called a patera, was the great cosmic vulva that poured forth the waters of life, symbolized by honey, milk, wine, or blood. (See “When the Drummers were Woman”, by Layne Redmond, 1997,Three Rivers Press)
In MAAT Tarot the mourning goddess beats her drum with the rhythm of life. She sits in the temple found in Çatal Hüyük. Temples and burial sites, found from Malta to Scotland, were designed to look like the head of the bull and one of the finest examples is at Çatal Hüyük. Contrary to the patriarchal interpretation- which is that these bull figures symbolize male fertility- these "bull heads" may have been fashioned after the shape of the uterus. (See Habitations of the Great Goddess Cristina Biaggi, Ph.D., 1994) The dead of Çatal Hüyük were left to be eaten by vultures. This method of funeral ceremonies would have allowed these ancient people to view the internal organs of their dead. One of the organs viewed would have been the uterus which during pregnancy, can swell to the size of a Bull/Cow's head. The uterus, the fallopian tubes, and ovaries look surprisingly similar to the star-horned bull’s head depicted during this time. Consequently the symbol of the bull's head could have been an important feminine symbol of rebirth and not just a male virility symbol as early male bias archeologists had assumed. The ritual killing of bulls by the slitting their throats comes to mind as an imitation of the female menstrual cycle one contemplates this symbol with new eyes. These rituals were prominent in early human societies and these rites were performed for the sake of power and fertility.
One relief sculpture found in Egypt is this same bull head symbol is surrounded by five stars. These stars may be the same stars found in the constellation of Taurus. The Aegean counterpart to Salma, another Moon Goddess like Selene, is Tar, meaning ‘the West’ or ‘dying Sun.’ Tartara is also given as the name of the Land of the Dead and may come from tar-tar, meaning Far, Far West. Homer mentions Tartar in his Iliad ‘as far below earth as Heaven is above it.’ In Greek mythology, Tartarus is also known as the Land of the Dead and means ‘Far West.’ Semele was worshipped during Lenaea, the Festival of the Wild Woman, when a young bull, representing Dionysis, was cut into nine pieces and sacrificed to her. One piece of the bull was burned, and the rest was eaten by worshippers. Semele is yet another form of Selene, which is the Moon. Nine (Triple Goddess multiplied by three) was a sacred number of the orgiastic Moon-Priestesses who took part in these feasts. Nine priestesses dancing around the sacred King is depicted in a cave painting in Cogul. Taranis is a Gaulish deity associated with Scythian Diana, (Taurian Artemis) who practiced human sacrifice. These sacrifices probably were originally meant to be symbolic and associated with plants, vegetation, and the hunt. The ritual of dismemberment is found in the stories of Gods from many different cultures where they are torn apart and scattered or eaten. An interesting story incorporating bulls and dismemberment is that of the Greek Pentheus (King of Thebes). He apparently did not like Dionysus and had him arrested along with all of Dionysus' Maenads. Pentheus went mad and instead of capturing Dionysus, shackled a bull. The Maenads escaped and raged through the mountains, tearing calves apart in their anger. Dionysus, like the Roman Bacchus, is the deity of wine and vintage festivals. Grapes are crushed and the juice fermented into wine. Wine is often a symbol for blood and is part of the ritual sacrifice. The uterus is the bowl or cup that holds the wine.
It is proposed from all these clues that the bull head symbols were meant to symbolize the womb. The sacred place where the spirits of the dead were thought to reside. The souls of the dead taking on the symbol of the sun as it sinks in the west or buried in the earth mother, promises rebirth in the east each morning. The sacred blood of the womb and its fertility brings all this about.
Other names: Tar-Anis; Annis of the West; Death Goddess; Salma; Semele; Kali; Cybele; Hathor; Hecate
Symbols: Bull’s horns; womb; tomb gateway; bull sacrifice; drum; bowl
Attributes: Radical transformation; the Harvest; abundance; strong; hibernation; Rest and ease; Bull/Cow
In a Reading:The Death card represents the promise of renewal. It is complete and total change, transformation, and transmutation. When seeking information about timing this card would represent the end of something followed by a new beginning.
New Moon in Scorpio-Tells the story of how appearances can be deceiving.
Do a self check to see where appearances have been deceiving, where you may have misjudged a situation or where you may have been misjudged or where you were surprised by unscrupulous or uncharacteristic behavior. Review where you could have brought clarity, been more prepared or where you should have seen a situation with clearer vision. Take action to rectify this misunderstanding if possible. Otherwise if this is not possible do mental correction of this situation realizing that the universe is constantly correcting imbalances. Review what you have learned from your deeper shadow self brought on by this situation.
In a Reading: This card puts you on notice that mischief is afoot. There is some kind of deception taking place. Something is not what it seems to be. When seeking information about timing this card would represent just when you think something is over it is not or just when you think you have just begun something you will find you are done with it.
Traditional tarot meaning: defeat, loss, failure, and dishonor