14/01 The Devil


I was too tired and headachy yesterday to do a card- I'm weaning myself off of caffiene. The deck has been very supportive. I've been pulling a lot of wands cards, like the 5, 2 and 7 for today, that are about having the energy and spirit to overcome obstacles. But the card that has been on my mind has been the Devil, as in, how did I ever get this far down this road, anyway? Now it's a job and a half to try and change direction. So I pulled this card to meditate on today. At first glance this was a somewhat disappointing card. No chained couple, no dance of wild abandon. Small and big eyed, even the accompanying flames hardly made it a menacing sight. Then I was reminded of a story by humorist/outdoorsman Patrick McManus called the "Bear in the Attic". In this story, a logging foreman is brought a baby bear by the loggers (somehow the mother bear was killed), who were too squemish to kill it. The foreman also coundn't bring himself to kill it and brought it home for the night to consider the problem. His wife fell in love with the bear and began raising it in the house. Eventually, the bear leaves home, but comes back to hibernate in the attic that winter. It is ravenous and the couple barely escape with their lives. They buy another house and leave the bear to hibernate in that attic each winter from then on. So it struck me. This could be a baby demon. The kind that says to you, "That isn't a Bad Habit. That's just a little personal quirk." The kind of personal quirk that in someone you are enamoured with could even be considered cute, or kind of sexy- "So he drives too fast, he just loves the thrill of speed!" The kind that in yourself you can ignore until it grows up to be a Big Demon. Now it looks pretty menacing, indeed.

Graham's booklet says: "The curtains have opened upon a dark theatre, a stage of restrictions. In front of us sits a bizarre part- animal figure, who stares directly at us. The Devil is earthbound by clawed feet; her bat wings signify passivity. She yearns to fly but her perception is limited; she remains frustrated.
The Devil has a hold on your emotions, she has chained you down. However, our state of bondage is by choice, and the Devil is an illusion. The chains by which she holds us are created from addictions and negative indulgences, and represent the things we must abandon. Although they initially appear as pleasures, they are simply patterns of the past. On the other hand, the Devil helps us to be more constructive, encouraging us to move beyond our limitations, and confront our restrictions.
Divinitory Meaning: Sexual obsession, matierialism, frustration , greed, perversion, self-punishment.
Reverse Meaning: Overcoming urges of self-gratification, learning to love, develop higher self-esteem."


Hi Galadrial,

I'd been trying to do the cards in order (though I don't think I'll be able to quite catch up to the rest of the group this way...) ... but I had to respond to this post. And, it's not too far off my path, as it IS a major arcana.

I love the perspective you bring to this card. You are right. This lady demon doesn't look very menancing... and that perhaps is the true danger here. Heck, being bad can be very fun. And this devil sure does look impish. If we didn't enjoy our addictions... we wouldn't persist in them.

that's it for now... I'm sure I'll be back to revisit this card again soon.

thanks, joya

(ps. good luck with the caffiene withdrawl. Been there. Done that. Several times! It's tough... but it feels so good once you're over the initial hump of the first several days.)


She looks kind of seductive to me. When i look at her she reminds me how tempting all the bad things for me are.

The clawed foot being blue attracks my attention away from cutish look and shows that she is still monster under the 'cheeky devil' guise of hers. She reminds me of my mother always telling me 'it's the quiet ones you have to watch'.

Our addictions/ways/habits can often be bad for us but there are normally warning signs or something niggling in the backs of our minds that tells us to beware. It's up to ourselves to acknowledge them and face them or let them hold us down forever.

This devil definitely makes me want to look after myself and tread carefully.

She doesn't fool me!

(A good card for me today - i need to diet!!!)