Card Profile: Devil (15)

The Devil is the first card of the last phase of the Major Arcana. Reminding both the Lovers and the Hierophant cards, he represents that the old systems of belief and mounted wisdom; albeit reassuring and comfortable, are not enough and limiting now; shaking these off is required to ascend on the Journey.

the-devil

Description

The prominent figure in the Devil card is satyr-like figure; he has the upper body of a human with the lover body of an animal; he is depicted with goat’s horns and an inverted pentagram between these horns. He also has bat-like wings, and in his lowered right hand he holds a torch whereas his right hand is raised. He crouches on a plinth, to which two red-haired and nude human-like figures, a man and a woman. Both of them have horns on their heads, and both of them have tails: The male figure’s tail is made of flames, whereas that of the female figure reminds a fruit-bud.
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The Devil card does not feature the Evil; but a mighty, yet minacious power; that of fervor. This power he represents is capable of both enslavement and liberation. If one becomes addicted to the comfort provided by the limits and does not realize and does not flare up the spark of the Infinite Oneness he is; then the spark is chained down by the delusion of absolute individuity, and cannot forgather with the spectrum of the Infinite Oneness. On the other hand; if one recognizes that his individuity is an offset of the Infinite Oneness, which is all there is and yearns to unite this offset with the paramount light; the fervor provides the stimulus to ascend.
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The male and female figures represent the duality exists on all levels of existence; the duality represented by masculine and feminine characterizations; kindling and fire, the soil and flower, potential and action, receiving and giving, nurturing and consuming and so on. These two complete and embrace each other, and they provide the sustenance of the circle of life. The Fool would derive the energy to ascend from this sustenance if he goes for liberation, he cannot get too far unless he embraces this duality. The chain on the neck of male and female figures are loose, they can easily slip away, but they have to go together, and for that, the action needs to be taken to move away from the bonds of fervent addiction to the comfort of the individuity. It does not signify a need of reclusion from this comfort or pleasures; it only denotes that this they are just a facet of all there is: The Fool needs not to give these up, but has to abandon his hold of them. The delusion is not individuity itself; it is blindness to the tapestry which the individuity is a pattern of.
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The inverted pentagram and the naming of the Card represent that the fervor is not housed in the Infinite Oneness; as well the guidance. They are tools designed to facilitate the Journey; but at the level of complete union, they are of no use; and as one gets closer to the Infinite Oneness, they seem alien and beastial.

Annotation

The Devil represents the fears and addictions that restrain one, as such it might imply negative patterns of behavior such as overly instinctive or obsessive behavior and acting without thinking. A person represented by the Devil would be leaning to addiction and would be a foreigner to moderation; he would be driven by his urges. This person might be highly ambitious, though it would be superficial. In a relationship context, this card implies raw and sexual attraction between two parties, rather than a deep connection. That being said, it might also represent that the relationship is starting to feel restricting for them. Career-wise, this card can be considered to account for the feeling of being locked in a job which does not satisfy one personally but has a bountiful return or presents a gleaming prospect. It might also denote over-indulgence in work against the work-play balance.
.An over-indulgence of anything, even something as pure as water, can intoxicate.
-Criss Jami, Venus In Arms
All in all, the Devil suggest that both the labor and pleasures are the tools that sustain and enables one to maintain, express and realize himself; but inordinateness in those might be disruptive to their very purpose.
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