That Ol’ Devil…True Tarot Tales.
Well, Valentine’s Day…get lost. (I say this though I am happily married, except for when I want to kill him)
Once upon a time you were a fertility festival called The Lupercal. Men in wolf masks ran about the streets of Rome, in honour of the fertility god Lupercus, and in memory of ther she-wolf who suckled Romulus and Remus, symbolically thrashing (ie, lightly touching) any women they met who seemed of child bearing age. Any woman not wanting to be fertile had better have stayed indoors. Then Christianity claimed the festival, originally held on February 15th.
Valentine’s day, you’re a fabricated commercial-fest, but, still, you serve as a reminder of magical eyernal of the human condition – ‘that ol’ Devil called Love’.
The Devil speaks of passions and powerlessness. It betokens entrapment, frustration, a need to break free, even if the wish is not there.
Look at the picture below. The man and the woman are being held in bondage to one another and to ‘the Devil’…by the power of their animal nature; their physical passions (food, sex, drugs, alcohol, daily habits etc) to which they are ‘addicted’. In terms of human body chemistry, sexual passion might as well be regarded as an addiction.
I’ve only once encountered what you might call a vampire, in my professional reading work. One reading that left me so drained I had to go straight to bed afterwards, where I slept like a stone all night. My client was a very nice person to read for, but she was in the grip of ‘the Devil’ all right. She was married, with a passion for another man, also married. She was a good looking and glamorous lady. I could tell from the cards that the man had powerful charisma. In fact I had a ‘psychic’ moment and guessed who it was. He worked in the entertainment industry. She was shocked that I guessed his identity (but no more than I was!) All at once I seemed to ‘see’ him, looking out over her shoulder from the cards. I felt she might get a taste of what she was hoping for, but if she did, I could see no ‘happy ending.’
It was like being in a negative vortex. I hope she got free of her wish in time.
The Rider-Waite’s Devil card: U.S Games Systems
The Devil’s appeared in 3 readings recently, and each time drawn coupled with the Moon card, which signifies ‘hunting,’ fantasy, and emotional extremes. In each case, someone was having a hard time struggling to let go of a romantic relationship but it was now time they must. They were no longer welcome. In fact, one was now in danger of behaving like a stalker, although on none of these occasions did I personally feel anything like the negative physical impact of the ‘show biz’ lovers. But show biz is ‘ego, ego’ and a powerful aura, positive or negative is perhaps to be anticipated in such readings.
William Blake’s lllustration ‘A Whirlwind of Lovers’…from Dante’s Divine Comedy. where obsession Has Consigned the Lovers To A ‘Circle Of Hell’…meaning in Tarot…an unfree state of mind.
The Devil card drawn upside down, or in Tarot-speak Reversed or Ill-Dignified, is usually better for being drawn upside-down, as it often denotes clarity and liberation. So if you’re trying to give up a habit that’s proving harmful or restrictive to you it’s a sign you’re going to be able to kick that habit, whether it’s physical or behavioural.
The Devil’s a card known, with justice, for its powerful negative aspects. It speaks of fear, frustration, anger, unhealthy habits, obsession and addiction, and the evil that can ensue from these things. Usually, the situation that it’s referring to could do with overturning. The tough news is that it’s going to have to be you that overturns it, and maybe too, there is no real solution and the situation meantime must just be endured.
But The Devil isn’t all bad. As an image of Pan, god of all wild creatures, rather than in its guise as Christianity’s Devil, this beastly card is still strong stuff requiring careful handling but it signifies desire, animal magnetism, focus and passion…
It is charisma. It is a drive and passion to create. It is our connecetion to our roots in earth and our general animal vitality – (steady tiger!) – a strong glue for keeping relationships together over the long haul. As they say, a little of what you fancy does you good.
The anger of The Devil also comes in handy just now and then, should you be unfortunate enough to find yourself dealing with any bullies or tin pot gods. Let that Devil look out of your eyes, as you politely say ‘I beg your pardon?’
If a glimpse of your inner Devil wins you a bit of respite, and pushes cr*p out of your space, there’s not much the matter with that either.
No. The Devil’s not always bad. The challenge is to keep him in his place and not feed him too often, letting him get too powerful.
Just make sure it’s your naughty devil, or cheeky imp, that’s under control and inside the cage. Not you.
Imp: Public Domain via Clipart.