The Legacy of the Divine Magician looks like an intense, focused older man. Somehow I get the sense he is so involved in his magical workings that he has no idea what is going on around him. He may be able to command the elements to do his bidding but can he get his daughter to listen to him? I don’t think so.
Looking at the image on Tarot of the Crone’s Magician I was struck by how frightening it initially appears. One almost gets the sense that the fierce looking creature on the cards is just waiting to devour you. When I look in the creature’s eyes, I am struck by a twinkle there. It almost feels as though this fierce creature is laughing at me – mocking my fear and my arrogance; teasing me. Am I afraid of what lies through the creature’s mouth? Maybe, just maybe, I am.
The common thread to both these cards for me is that sense of getting lost in yourself; becoming so enthralled with your own brilliance and power that you lose sight of the rest of the world. It is one of the things we often seen in scientific research (especially in movies and novels) – the scientific researchers are so enraptured by their quest for knowledge that they give no consideration to how it will be used. Alfred Nobel created the Nobel prizes an in effort to ameliorate the damage caused by his invention – dynamite. I’ve heard tales that J. Robert Oppenheimer, the man who lead the Manhattan Project which developed the first atomic bomb, was, at best, a mixed blessing.
The reason I brought these men up is because that is often how I feel about magical work. Sometimes it can be scary to see your goals and desires manifested in reality. If we are powerful and magical enough to create our own destiny and birth our dreams into life, then why do things go wrong? If I can control the elements and my surroundings, then is it my fault when I do not get the outcome I desire and worked towards? Sometimes it easy to think that way but I think that is the arrogance and ego that I sometimes see reflected in this card – a case of “I’m as powerful as a god” complex. And I suppose it is easy to fall into this trap if you’re not careful. One thing I’m learning in life, as a result of various factors, is that there are things beyond my control and no amount of magical working will change them. So what is probably more useful to me right now is to change the things I can. As the saying goes, I cannot change how someone else behaves, I can only change how I react to their behaviors. Maybe that’s what I need to focus on today.