The Devil in Me

There’s no short of anxiety when this card shows up in a reading. Most people I read for are either Christian, formerly Christian, or feel the impact of Abrahamic religions in their lives, so the Devil strikes a chord of fear and confusion. It’s not Satan represented here, but Pan or Dionysis, the horned gods of nature, wildness. The ruling sign here is Capricorn, my Sun sign, and I’ve always been a little bitter that I have such an ugly card associated with my birthday.

Nonetheless, the Devil can teach us important lessons when reflecting on our lives and relationships.If we are everything and no-thing, we release boundaries and labels and preconceived value judgments on our existence. We are wild and amorphous and free, but sometimes confused or blinded by temptation that keeps us from understanding true reality. See the chains around the necks of Adam and Eve in the above picture? They aren’t tight over their necks, and can be lifted off if focus were redirected to the self. One of my favorite Tarot thinkers, Rachel Pollack, describes the Devil as the comfort of the physical body and manifestation, that which holds us in naive comfort before we are ready to confront our own light and joy.

The Devil describes illusion, which I think is the first step toward true vision. Having the objective distance to name and describe illusion puts it in its place. The Devil can also mean obsession, addiction, and temptation, but can more simply mean a roadblock to unlocking your true potential. The Devil may expose some evil and painful things within us, but ignorance of those things won’t get anyone anywhere. Then you’ll need the next card, the Tower, to rock your foundations and produce chaos to really get you to wake up and change.

The Devil is opportunity, it is a mirror, it is your first wake-up call. Heed it.

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~ by cuteredhood on May 29, 2010.

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