A magican stands behind a table, one arm raised and one lowered. In his raised arm is a wand. Before him on the table are the tools he uses and the suits of the minor arcana – pentacle, sword, wand and cup. An infinity symbol is etched over the magicians head. Strands of ivy or garlands hang over him and flowers grow to the foreground.
After the Fool, the Magician is the awakening we all go through as we embark on the journey that is the Tarot. On the face of it, The Magician is a simple card but within it holds the way to the truth that we all seek.
With one hand pointed skyward and the other pointed down, the phrase “As Above, So Below” will be familiar to many. To understand the gods, heavens, worlds or the reason why, we need only look at what is around us (beneath us). The Magician also serves as a medium between the spirit and earthly worlds, and in the magical arts we walk that thin line between the two. We should be aware of our abilities and recognise that we can channel energy ‘from above’ to ‘below’ in accordance with our intentions.
Dressed in a white robe is symbolic of the innocence and purity of the Magician. We should not approach this journey or the magical arts with impurities in our hearts, nor for self gain. We should always ensure our intentions are noble and serve a higher goal.The red cloak represents our fire and passion in life. These two colours and meanings are again represented in the flowers to the front – white and red which are possible lillies (white) and roses (red).
The infinity sign over the Magician hints at several things – the endless journey we face, that time is endless, that the Magicians quest is never really over. This is again represented by the snake eating its tail which appears as a belt around the magicians waist.
The symbols laid out on the table represent more than just the suits of the Tarot. In our magical work, we use our emotions (cups), mind (swords), creative fire (spirit – wands) and our bodies or earthly belongings (pentacles) in pursuit of our art.
When the Magician appears in readings it is a sign that we have within ourselves the creative ability to achieve our goals. Using all the tools available to us, there is no reason as to why we cannot progress on our journey whether that be in business, relationships or spiritual. This is a time to will things to happen, to believe in the endless possibilities of life.
We should also be aware of deeper meaning to things occurring around us. Just as the Magician is loaded with symbolic meaning, so events seemingly taking place at random in our lives could be screaming at us to pay attention! That passing comment about a job opening, the compliment someone pays us, the full moon we’ve never noticed before or the bird singing overhead – all could be omens or signals from the other world to guide us or awaken us to the magic that takes place all around us.
If we are in pursuit of a specific goal, we should take the lead of the Magician and apply ourselves diligently to attaining it. All our emotions, mind, spirit and body should be focused on the goal. The Magician does not herald success if we apply ourselves only half-heartedly – we must be focused and determined to achieve our goals and apply everything we have at our disposal.
The Magician reversed can signify that we are not applying ourselves with focus and will to our goals. We are only prodding here and there, never sincere in our efforts to progress ourselves on our journey. Success therefore, eludes us. Failure is not the fault of other people nor the circumstances we find ourselves in – this failure is purely our own fault because we have been lazy or hesitant in applying ourselves.
When reversed, the Magician can also warn us to beware of forces that may be underhand or treacherous. These may be from ourselves! Treachery, betrayal, deceit and dishonesty are afoot. If we are engaged in such practices The Magician is a warning to desist and right ourselves to the natural laws of the universe. For all the planning and skill it takes to carry out these negative traits, we would be better served utilising our talents for good!