“The Chariot” – A Tarot Interpretation


The Chariot (7) – Crowley’s Thoth Tarot


• “The Chariot” (7) is ruled by the Moon (feminine), the water element and cardinal sign of Cancer. Body parts governed are the breast, chest, and stomach. Color influences are silver, sea green, light blue, pearl white. These colors enhance the aspects of the water and moon energies. 

 •  “7” (Numerology)  represents intuition, creativity, willpower, spirituality, ambition, and success. Those who have “7” as their birth number tend to be spiritually influenced. There’s an inner desire for spiritual knowledge and the use of Self intuition in their lifetime. The connection of the “spirit” is essential for those with a “7” life path influence. The secular side of “7” is that it shows an ambitious drive towards success, and having a keen sense of perception.

•  The High Priestess (2) is ruled by the receptive influence of the Moon. The planet which governs the emotions and intuition. The High Priestess is the divine guide when it comes to bridging the realms of reason and intuition.

The Chariot and the High Priestess complement each other through the balance of willpower and knowledge. The Chariot archetype shows that inner strength is essential for success and taking control of challenging situations, while The High Priestess is the conduit to manifest balanced intuitive decisions during times of conflict.

THOTH TAROT (top left), GILDED TAROT (top right), LUMINA TAROT (bottom left)                    RIDER WAITE SMITH (bottom right)




Aleister Crowley’s Thoth Tarot


Crowley’s Thoth Tarot:

The Thoth Tarot defines the major and minor Arcana through esoteric representation.
As the Thoth tarot is rich in detail and meaning, I will give a brief overview of The Chariot with a primary focus on the symbology of this card.

Here we see the Charioteer in full armor and a Crab atop his helmet. His armor and the Crab are symbolic of the astrological sign of Cancer. The Chariot, also known as “Cheth” and the “Lord of the Triumph of Light, is the protective vehicle of the Charioteer’s soul and body. The Chariot is without reigns and is guided through the intuitive actions of the Charioteer.

Notice that the Charioteer is in a seated meditative pose and holding the Holy Grail, which contains the essence of life. According to Crowley, the Holy Grail holds the life-creating elixir of male and female energies through sexual alchemy. It is the merging of these dualities that create balance within the Self.

There are ten stars on the Charioteer’s suit of armor that represent the ten sephira from the Four Worlds of the Kabbalah. By elements, Assiah is manifestation through earth/pentacles, Yetzirah is formation through air/swords, Briah is creativity through water/cups, and Atziluth is the archetype through fire/wands. The four actions of manifestation, formation, creativity, and the final archetype (the outcome) are what’s needed to successfully accomplish one’s goals in life.


Four Worlds of the Kabbalah


At the base of the Chariot are the four Kerubic beasts: The Lion (Leo/Fire), The Eagle (Scorpio/Water), The Bull (Taurus/Earth), and the Archangel/ Man (Aquarius/Air). Each fixed astrological sign and its natural elements represent the various states of transformational energies. These entities are part of the Charioteer’s guiding forces transcending through the physical and mystical realms of the Self (I AM)

The Chariot begins a journey on the release of the ego’s internal and external conflicts starting at Binah (Saturn = determination). It is through this purpose and fierce willpower that one can let go of old thoughts and actions, and Geburah (Mars = force) is the active force to move the Chariot through this path.


“Tree of Life and the Thoth Tarot”

As you can see, the journey of The Chariot is one that is very complex. It has the individual Self peeling away old layers of it’s past to expose the true essence of who we are. The Thoth Tarot and the Kabbalah interpretations are specifically in depth to break down the various levels of these microcosm and macrocosm worlds. Deciphering the Thoth’s Chariot is barely scraping the surface with it’s myriad of symbolic representations.




The Gilded Tarot:  

In the Gilded Tarot, I feel the Chariot is more worldly in its interpretation. Our charioteer is a woman dressed in purple with the Sun beaming above her. Her status could be either of royalty or of material wealth. The Sun symbol indicates her steadfast willpower for the pursuit of achievements. The sphinxes at the base of the Chariot are of silver and gold representing the duality of the material and spiritual realms, in contrast to the Thoth’s tarot duality of female and male energies.

Our female charioteer has a sense of self-confidence in her accomplishments as she looks away, but has yet to comprehend the influence of these successes. It is this lack of understanding that could cause the Chariot to be misguided on its journey. By retaining Self-focus and Willpower, the Chariot can regain direction to achieve many personal achievements.







• Rider-Waite Smith: 

The RWS tarot shows a more traditional interpretation of The Chariot. The Charioteer’s armor is emblazoned with two crescent moons one on each shoulder side, he is crowned with the symbol of the sun, the sphinxes are black and white, and the Chariot’s canopy is covered in stars.

The RWS Charioteer is leaving his citadel (material success) behind to pursue another victorious accomplishment(s). The crowning Sun gives him the strength and willpower for endurance on his journey, while the starred canopy and crescent moons indicate his connection to the spiritual Self. 

The two sphinxes are the focus on the RWS Chariot card. The union of these conflicting forces becomes the challenge for the Charioteer when maintaining control and direction on his journey. By overcoming any self-doubt or inner conflict, “Self” confidence and motivation will inspire the Chariot to gain momentum towards success. It is not the victory of achievement itself, but the means of how it was accomplished that is of importance for the Charioteer.





Lumina Tarot: 

The Chariot represented in the Lumina deck is focussed on harnessing and aligning the internal energies of the Self. These include building inner strength, self-confidence, and willpower to inspire a movement towards personal attainment.

Through discipline and determination, one can control the untamed horses (representing challenges and disorder) of the Chariot towards the completion of your goals. Remain steadfast and unwavering on this journey.

Take a moment to ask, “what are the core values in completing one’s personal goals?” Will these values be ones that you can gain knowledge from?

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