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On the Basic Nature of the Earth Element

by Lee Duane FitzSimmons

The terrain of Terra. The great matriarch of nature casts her bewitching enchantments for all of the cosmos to behold in spectacular wonder and delight. Her vital essence is the dense form of motherly matter. In the yin and yang of the Eastern realms, she is the pure nature of the darkness of yin and considered to be the densest aspect of this nocturnal essence. Her turquoise tears flood her terrestrial terraces.

Earth is represented in the Tarot by many different circular notions. These iconic symbols include pentacles, coins, rings, and jingle bells. The traditional deck of playing cards uses the suit of diamonds; this shape can be taken and expanded it into an octahedron. This three dimensional shape not only maintains the shape of the diamond but also forms a perfect double pyramid that is connected at the bases. By encompassing this three-dimensional geometric shape within a sphere (where all of the corners of the octahedron intersect perfectly with the surface of a spherical globe), one now has an iconic spherical representation for this elemental expression that encompasses a three-dimensional diamond. This iconic representation would seem to be a more complete expression of the element of earth because it provides direct geometric and poetic corollaries to the shape and essence of carbon.

Höhle am Abend by Joseph Wright of Derby (1774)

The element of earth is the densest form of energy with which the human species is familiar. It is known in modern day science as the solid state of matter. It is this form of energy that is associated with the accumulation of wealth and riches; thus, there is an association of the suit of diamonds with wealth. When one examines the etymology of the triliteral stem that is composed of the letters Mem/M, Tav/T, and Resh/R, it is possible to connect it to the words matter, matriarch, mature, menstrual, material, and mother.

When examined more thoroughly, this stem can be broken down into its component parts. The first part of this stem is the letter Mem/M, and the second part is the biliteral root that is created from the letters Tav/T and Resh/R. The meaning of this biliteral root has the basic connotations of “abundance” and “wealth.” From these meanings, the words treasure, trove, and treat have been formed as well as the earthly sense of the words terra and terrain.

There is also another meaning found with this biliteral root, and it is expressed by the concepts of “order,” “row,” and “turn.” The etymological relationship in the word turn is quite apparent. From this basic meaning, the words Tarot, Torah, teacher, term, and train are formed. These terms express basic underlying concepts such as “nurture” and “motherly instruction.” Thus, when the etymologies of these words are examined, it is easy to see why the concept of "Mother Earth" is so common.

The words of humanity express this notion.

The notions of humanity express these words.

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Copyright 2014 by Lee Fitzsimmons