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two of air: *shock* Tell me about this! (Michael & the Devil)

Thread originally posted on the Aeclectic Tarot Forum on 07 Oct 2002, and now archived in the Forum Library.

aeonx  07 Oct 2002 
OK, first, check out this link: Tarot de Paris, and look at the "Two of Air". The card with one angel that obviously has defeated another one.

Two years ago in Thailand, I bought a wooden statue of almost the same depiction. However, my 'conquering' angel has his wings up. His sword is pointing downwards, from his raised hand, towards his 'enemy'. He also looks down at him. Contrary, too, to the card, the defeated one is cramped under him in the position of an embryo, resting his head on his arms. His wings are curled on his back, not flung out as in the card. Also, in the card, the 'fallen' angel has his feet kinda kicking, my doesn't.

It was just an interesting discovery, but, I wonder if any of you know the story of one of these depictions? Since the day I bought my angels I've felt that they have a story to tell me. The statue is incredibly fascinating, and I've spent a few minutes admiring it. :)

If anybody knows anything about this, you would make me very happy!


Marie  07 Oct 2002 
Hi Aeonx:)

This is a classic depiction of the archangel Michael defeating the devil.


aeonx  08 Oct 2002 
Thank you, Marie. :)
Does anybody know the exact story, or where I can read it?


Indigo  08 Oct 2002 
I looked up Michael in the index of my Bible. He isn't mentioned by name very often, but the most significant of these is in Revelations, 12:7-9 "And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down -- that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan..."

The only other time the Archangel Michael is mentioned in the text of the Bible is in Jude, where he is said to have argued with Satan over the disposition of Moses' corpse.

These religious texts are simply to explain the theme of some works of art, and should not be construed as an endorsement of any religion. :) 

Marie  08 Oct 2002

Check out that link for a lot of good information.

It should be noted that Michael, while he is a catholic saint etc. he is also believed in by a lot of people regardless of faith.


aeonx  08 Oct 2002 
Thanks you guys! This was very helpful, and I'm off to read the link and the Bible! :D


Laurel  08 Oct 2002 also describes good places in scripture to read about Michael's battles.

In tarot, when I think of "fiery swords" as opposed to "fiery wands", I think of the archangel Michael. Of the four Kerubic angels, he seems to be the most 'masculine' and aggressive- but I don't see this in a negative way. On the contrary, I imagine Michael as extraordinarily beautiful, but he is the Warrior Archetype in one of its purest and spiritual and imo powerful forms.

Here's some images with a similar theme as that tarot: lists the websites all these pictures were borrowed from.


aeonx  09 Oct 2002 
Laurel: Thank you for providing these links. The number four looks most like the one I have, except for the libra in his hand. :)


jmd  10 Oct 2002 
The scales which the Archangel Michael sometimes holds is for two reasons. On the one hand, St Michael's day is on the 29th of September, clearly on the 'octave' of the (Northern hemisphere) Vernal Equinox - thus in Libra. On the other, it serves to depict the weighing of the Souls - very much reminiscent of Egyptian iconography and its weighing of the heart against (the feather of) Maat (Truth/Justice).

I haven't the time to look at those links yet, Laurel, but thanks for providing the resources! 

aeonx  11 Oct 2002 
Thanks, jmd, for clearing that up. :) The depiction of Michael fighting the devil is truly fascinating, and I didn't even know of the story when I bought my statues. *s*


jmd  11 Oct 2002 
Just to add to the pictures provided, attached is a painting from one of the Swiss churches, and certainly quite reminiscent of VIII - Justice depictions. 

Zhritza  11 Oct 2002 
so the Devil is sometimes depicted as a crocodile-dragon thingy? (this reminds me of St. George) 

Laurel  14 Oct 2002 
Yes, the devil is- and the similarities between these images of Michael and fallen Satan and those of Saint George and the Dragon are no coincidence.


aeonx  14 Oct 2002 
Laurel: why isn't this any coincidence? :) *curious me*


Laurel  16 Oct 2002 
The archetypal symbolism, the basic "myth" underlying both is one and the same. Both stories share the same cultural roots as well and developed more or less around the same time and were popular as topics in art and poetry during the same era. In one way, it can be said that St. George and his dragon were really just a retelling of the same mythic story.


aeonx  16 Oct 2002 
Laurel, thank you for clarifying! :) I will have to dedicate some time to read up on these events.


Zhritza  16 Oct 2002 
This is such a neat connection... I keep meaning to read the New Testament (at least parts of it), and to look into Christian saint stories such as these, as well. Hopefully this will push me a bit more toward doing that :) 

Keslynn  16 Oct 2002 
If anyone wants to know almost anything about the saints and their legends/stories, PM me. I have tons and tons of information because this is something I'm really interested in. I can recommend some great books. I just don't want to clog up the boards if no one else is interested. *lol* Because once you get me started....

:) Kes 

aeonx  17 Oct 2002 
Keslynn: *lol* That sounds wonderful! I'll certainly PM you if I have any questions about saints I'm interested in. Thank you for offering! :*


renard  23 Oct 2002 
Cool thread! BTW, there's a sappy 96 movie, Michael, in which John Travolta plays the angel-come-to-earth. A lot of it (the love story -- ack!) is dopey, but the portrayal of the angel as an ecstatic, pure-hearted fighter -- there's a fabulous scene in which he takes on a bull -- in some ways rings true.

My son went to an episcopal school called St. Michael and All Angels, and I always loved the feeling of valor and protection in just the name itself.

Namaste, renard 

aeonx  23 Oct 2002 
Hi renard.
You're right, I've seen that movie ages ago! :D Funny! I haven't thought about that one for a long time, maybe I have to go rent it. *s*


The two of air: *shock* Tell me about this! (Michael & the Devil) thread was originally posted on 07 Oct 2002 in the Using Tarot Cards board, and is now archived in the Forum Library. Read the threads in Using Tarot Cards, or read more archived threads.

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