The Thoth Tarot-key 15 (ATU-15) is named the Devil while the same key is called Temptation in the Tarot of the Old Path. Both show ancient symbols of the Devil, the Goat in the Thoth Deck and the Fox , a medieval symbol, in the Tarot of the Old Path. Crowley's Goat represents the old Goat headed god and the Sign Capricorn as well, which is only appropriate since this is the sign attributed to this card. Capricorn is a sign attributed to the element earth, thus the mysterious woodland theme of the Temptation card.
The young lovers on the Temptation Card, are represented here as a very sensuous young woman displaying her charms, and a smitten young man kissing her hand. The language of flowers is used extensively in this card as she holds a king cup in her right hand, implying a yearning for riches, which is shown also as a bag of coins at the young man's feet. He is leaning against a tree unaware of the serpent coiling around both it and his leg; the serpent representing temptation, mystery and destruction, as it is often the symbol of the Lord of Life and Death. ( Zeus, the Devil etc.)
The dog-rose clambering by the tree, warns of pleasure and pain cautioning of the empty promises received by those who seek earthly pleasures.
Near the fox is a maidenhair fern urging discretion and burdock that says, "touch me not". Also near the burdock is a cracked stone representing destruction and infinity where All things began, must end, and begin again, as the infinite cycle of change. In the distance, beyond the trees, lightning flashes a danger warning adding to the signs of disaster all around the young couple who are besotted with their own ideas of pleasure and unaware of the obvious. Their vulnerability and greed is a perfect playground for the Trickster-Devil who will lead them to destruction, who is represented as the Fox. The Tarot of the Old Path- key 17- seems to be a dire card, whose danger is hidden in the disguise of pleasure.
The human brain, is the Trickster, the tempter and the all around pain in the etheric-butt, to the etheric Soul. The animal survival mind is the Devil inside, it's whole life is based on fear of death, which in disguise is often, fear of rejection and/or fear of discomfort and/or pain; always feeling vulnerable in its fear of being prey. Thus, the brain often does unto others before they can do unto it, creating an ever continuing cycle of violence. The immortal, we call Soul, must pay close attention to this tricky "artificial intelligence", for it is artificial to the True Intelligence of the Supreme Spiritual Self, who doesn't fear death, nor needs materialist values, that are short lived and not the Real Life of I AM. Spiritual Truth is I AM...... materialist values are "I Fear", which could be fear of loss, fear of poverty (man-made invention) fear of pain, fear of rejection etc which are all disguises of fear of death. We find that those who have fallen to the temptation of the "lizard brain", are predatory cowards, who will only prey on the most vulnerable and innocent; that way they seemingly avoid hurt.
However, you look at it, the Devil is the trickster in our heads, that causes worry, fear, cowardliness and all the character traits of the low material mind. You may note, that when the brain hasn't an answer during a debate of topics, and fears looking the fool, it immediately practices character assassination on the opposing party, trying to draw attention away from its lunacy.; hoping by besmirching the other with "name calling" it will win the argument and thus survive the whip-lash of peer pressure; a totally imagined pain generated by fear of vulnerability. The Spirit knows the advantages of an immortal self, that can finally feel vulnerable, as vulnerability give us all the great character traits, of generosity, empathy, charity, loyalty, love, tactfulness, supportive, etc.. Vulnerability gives us discernment, which is what any creator of life needs.
THE THOTH DECK KEY 15- THE DEVIL:
is attributed to the Hebrew letter Ayin, meaning "Eye", and is shown as the eye in the forehead of the Goat persona which is the reference to Capricorn in the zodiac. This is a very magic symbol, completely misunderstood by the cloistered, fear ridden, Christian monks of the middle ages but somewhat researched by Eliphaz Levi, who identified the Goat Headed God, as Baphomet, the ass-headed idol of the Knights Templar ( an early Christian idol...see Browning, THE RING AND THE BOOK) but not fully understanding this idol symbol, Eliphaz identified it with the Old God Pan. Thus, the Crowley card represents Pan-Pangenetor, the All-begetter. Since Capricorn is at its zenith here, and it is ruled by Saturn who makes for self-hood, perpetuity, and exalts Mars, whose fiery material energy of Creation is represented as the creative madness of Spring a leaping; As if as a goat, it leaps across the mountains and shakes off the winter death by uncontrolled fertility. Thus, the abstract phallic Tree of Life behind the Goat, has transparent roots, showing the leaping of sap; before the phallic tree stands the Goat God Pan with eye in the forehead his creative energy (phallus) is veiled in the symbol of Wand of the Chief Adept crowned with the winged globe and the twin serpents of Osiris and Horus. This image of fierce creativity is carried on by the fact that Capricorn is a harsh, rough, dark and even blind sign where the impulse to create takes no account of reason, custom or foresight. Capricorn is often unscrupulous and sublimely careless of result. As Crowley states in his Book of Thoth,(Page 106) ," thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that an no other shall say nay. For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is every way perfect".
On the Thoth Goat, there is a message of Mirth in the smirk on the goats face, for we are the creator's of our own "bogeyman". Also there is something silly in the crown of forget-me-nots, tilted on its head. Evil which is Live spelled backwards, isn't real, as all is illusion, in the realm of mater. The Divine Creative never creates what it doesn't want.
The blue for-get-me-nots also point out that the foundation of all mammalian survival thought is , "forget me not" and/or fear of rejection. So our serious thoughts of fear, are to be dispelled by "laughing at our selves" ,as our mere presence proves we are accepted by the Divine Creative. Even the concept of a "living material being" surviving is a joke, for all life dies, to evolve. Enjoy yourself now, your are going to die, be mirthful.
Any fool who thinks that Spirit--Spiral Energy, became human by accident, and hates the body, is just not paying attention and is denying the Intelligence of God. If it exists, it is supposed to, pure and simple. It is time to laugh at ourselves for fearing a body, whose breath is of Us; the Soul. The Soul being the true Psyche of the body (soma) and not the lizard brain who thinks in all the vastness of stupidity, that it will survive by destroying everything it doesn't understand. Learn to Laugh at your seriousness, and go out an play, for that body is how the Spirit dances in Sensation! Therefore, the goal of becoming Spiritual Self and/or I AM, in the most condensed way has been reached! The human form, is the last Spiritual Body on the Tree of Life. Therefore, making us "Wholly Spirit" only when we can operate a Human form as the sensual form of the I AM. The Devil (Devi-Lingam) is the master of manifested animal mind and/or the master of manifested form and must be faced and conquered, before one can implant the Higher states of conscious. After all, laughter conquers the seriously superstitious every time.
WHEN THE TEMPTATION OR THOTH DECK DEVIL CARD:
- It implies:: Mirth keeping us stable
- Warning, that even with the best of intentions, one may be wrong.
- The world of the dark subconscious where one struggles to make real what is seeming contradictions,, incomplete information, which show glimpses of light.
- A materialistic view of life
- Inhibitions and/or blocks that must be surmounted to continue growth.
- " Out of apparent evil, good can come"
- Denying your spirit by listening only to the materialistic brain.
- Recognition of greed
- an unfortunate liaison, or relationship.
- Judging a situation by its surface value.
- Extraordinary efforts, force, violence, fatality, because it is predestined phenomena, is not necessarily evil.
- Live spelled backwards, meaning you are not progressing due to your lack of mirth. Taking life too seriously.
Thank you for your interest and comments. May you live long and prosper.