Monday, May 20, 2013

Carpe Diem #201, The Devil (XV) Tarot

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

The last few episodes weren't easy to write, but this episode will be tougher. Why? I ppersonally don't believe in the excistence of The Devil as an equivalent of Evil. In my opinion The Devil is an imagenary creature to give Evil a face, but the next step in our journey (and quest) through the Tarot is the card of The Devil (XV) depicted as a horned and winged creature, with a dragon's tail and goat's legs. This image looks more like Pan, the flute playing god of nature, so it's in my opinion more an image which tells us that we are bound to earth, as an equivalent of matter and materialism. The Devil is more a physical creature than a spiritual creature, but on the other hand, The Devil is very spiritual. Why? I will try to explain that through the ancient mystical knowledge of numerology. First I will share the RW-Tarot deck card The Devil (XV) with you, so you have an idea of it.

As you maybe know our body has seven chakra's, seven energy points, in some scriptures even more some say 13 some say a lot, but that isn't of importance for this episode. As we look at the seperate numbers of The Devil (XV), 10 + 5 = 15 = 1 +5 = 6. In Numerology we can take the sum of the digits together. Fifteen becomes so 6. Six refers to the 6th chakra, there were the Third Eye is located, in the middle of the forehead. It's the chakra of wisdom and ancient knowledge. This is the place in which you can start an astral trip through all times. (I have done that once and I can say it was awesome). In sanskrit it's called: Agnya.

the Inner Eye
to beat the devil

"The sixth chakra is the chakra of forgiveness and compassion. Forgiveness is the power to let go of anger, hatred and resentment and to discover, in humility, the nobility and generosity of the Spirit. It is the one that dissolves all our conditionings, ego, habits, false ideas of racialism, and all our misidentifications. It is the narrow gate which opens the way for our consciousness to ascend to its final destination, which is the seventh center."

Agnya is the last stage before the life-energy, the Chi, reaches the Crown-chakra upon the middle of your head, your skull. To reach that chakra we need to gather all ancient knowledge and wisdom and become free of all anger, hatred and so on, say in one word "all Evil", but ... we have free will. So you can decide if you will go on or not. That is also the meaning of The Devil (XV). The Devil "asks" you to choose between Good and Evil action. As is said of the Snake in the Garden of Eden whom seduced Eve to eat from the Tree of Good and Evil, hoping that she became as wise as God. (Genesis 3: 1-24, NIV).

looking around in the jewelry-shop -
the devil's laugh

He, The Devil, did ask that also of Jesus Christ when He (Jesus) was tempted in the desert (Luke 4: 1-13 NIV). He, Jesus, had also free will and He choose to be Good and Righteous.
Before I go on I have to share something different. In the Old Testament (of the Hebrew Bible) there is never spoken about the Devil, not until the Babylonian Exile before that exile their was only God (the agent) as we can read in the books of Samuel. When the Israelites returned to their land, which is written in the books of Chronicles, than The Devil is named. Why? Well ... in Babylon the religion was different and was called Zoroastrianism. Zoroastrian was a prophet, who sought for God.  Around the year 580 B.C., he came to a revelation that everything that happens in the world that is good is the act of God, and everything that is bad is the result of a single controlling underlord, the evil mind, Anya Maynu.  This is the evil one; this is Satan. Through the Babylonian exile, the Jews encountered Zoroastrianism, and became familiar with the idea of the Devil.  When they came back, the Devil was intimately a part of their religion. After the Babylonian exile the scribes of the Hebrew Bible started to use this Devil (or Satan) to describe Evil and deeds of Evil.

OK ... back to the Temptation of Christ. The temptation of Jesus by the Devil is astoundingly illustrative.  Regrettably so few seem to recognize what these temptations are.  Temptations are not simply Jesus being able to prove that he is really the Son of God.  There are three temptations, and each one represents a very specific danger on the pathway of spiritual existence.  As we learn, as we grow, as we are able to harness strength and manifest the divine will, and as we begin to overcome the temptations of ego, there are three definite temptations which the Devil gives to us. To overcome these temptations that's the true meaning of this Tarot-card. Which three temptations uses The Devil to tempt us? Let us take a closer look at those temptaions as The Devil used to tempt Jesus.

Temptation #1:  If you are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.  The temptation here is to use the spiritual powers which the adept acquires for the purpose of satisfying his own flesh and his own needs and wants. (Luke 4: 3 NIV)

Temptation #2:  The devil took Jesus to a very high mountain and showed him all of the kingdoms of the world and all of their glory.  He said to Jesus, "All these things I will give you if you fall down and worship me."  This temptation is the final and most difficult.  This is, in some respects, the last dying gasp of the ego.  As the ego becomes cleansed and spiritual abilities are granted, and as the soul begins to recognize that it is a manifestation of God, the temptation is to harness those energies to control the entire world. (Luke 4: 6 NIV)

Temptation #3:  If you are the Son of God, stand upon this high pinnacle of the temple and throw yourself down.  The temptation here is, as one overcomes the limits of normal humanity and begins to glow with the celestial light of God, to make a spectacle of one's self and point to one's self as an object of worship and adoration. (Luke 4: 9-11 NIV)

Can we overcome these temptations? How can we overcome these temptations?
To overcome temptation #1, we must always seek to serve others and recognize that we are all one. 
For temptation #2, we must recognize that we are, in fact, nothing more then a conduit of the divine light and a channel of God's presence in this world.  
And for temptation #3, we must recognize that the totality of manifest creation, as glorious as it is, is simply the dancing of shadows upon the face of God.  We are to live not by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.  We shall not tempt the Lord our God, and we shall worship the Lord our God and serve Him only. All this we know is part of the Lord's Prayer ( Matthew 6: 9-15 NIV) and of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20: 1-17 NIV).
The Devil must be overcome, and these temptations must be overcome as we return on the pathway.
Jesus, through his passion and his death on the cross, states quite clearly, "It is finished."  The struggle between good and evil, God and man, the spirit and the flesh, is over.  The bonds of sin and death have been broken.  The chains which ensnare the human race have been cast aside.  We are now free to worship God and no longer be cast about and plagued by the Devil, yet the Devil is still alive and still well.     
This is the symbolism of card #15.

Credits: temptation

So what is this saying? The Devil (XV) is the turning point on our spiritual, Christian, path to Eternity. We have to conquer the temptations we all see around us in the world e.g. alcohol, drugs and so on. We have to learn from eachother, love eachother unconditionally and we have to learn from the ancient knowledge and wisdom to reach our final goal ... the Heavenly City.

Where do we find The Devil (XV) on the Tree of Life, the Kabbalistic glyph? We find him on the Path 25, which is the path between Yesod (the 9th sephira) and Tipharet (the 6th sephira). And the meaning of that is:

Yesod is the water of the Moon and magic of belief. It is also the beginning and the end as symbolised by the number 9. The beginning of a spiritual journey and the end of your material ties. (The choice we have to make as The Devil is tempting us.)
Tiphareth is the heart centre of the "Tree of Life". It is the Sun which all the planets revolved around. It is the Buddha, Krishna Mohammed, Christ Child within us all. With Tiphareth we all have the power to heal ourselves.
Tiphareth is the love we have for ourselves, not the passionate love of Geburah ( Mars ) nor the romantic love of Netzach ( Venus ) it is the self love we have for our own God within us. It is our Faith. It is our own understanding of ourselves and such is the centre of our universe, as the Sun is the centre of astrological universe.

through the Devil
love will lead us towards Heaven -
spiritual growth

In this we see how important The Devil (XV) is as depicted in the Tarot. We could look a bit further into this card and than we will see Adam and Eve, after The Fall, chained to the throne/altar of the Devil, but as we look closer the rings around their necks are big enough to pull them over their head, but they don't do that. It's another image for 'free will', will they (Adam and Eve) choose to free them self or not? As we now know The Fall was the fall of Ego and The Fall of our Lord Jesus, His Crucifixion, is The Fall of the physical and the step to spiritual growth.

I wonder what will The Tower (XVI) the next card of the Tarot bring us? We will see it in our next episode.I hope you enjoyed the read and I hope it inspired you to compose haiku. Namaste.

This prompt will stay on 'til May 23th 11.59 AM (CET) and I will post our next episode, The Tower (XVI), later on today around 10.00 PM (CET).


  1. I put in my haiku now.. Had not the time yet to read all the entries from yesterday. But I will be coming back to read them.

  2. Wow, another detailed and well researched post you ever sleep?

  3. Well we appreciate all your thorough research but wed love to know you slept too

  4. That was very interesing indeed - especially, and uniquely for me the new concept of Zoroastrian influence of the devil on Christianity. Personally I think Zoroaster is older than mentioned dates but what you wrote is fascinating. Thank you very much.

  5. I appreciate your hard work...
    and I appreciate that I still get very stressed reading anything
    about the subject, including Scott Peck's People of the Lie.

    But I did not skip it...