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The Magician Tarot Card Meaning - Claim Your Power

The first numbered card in the Major Arcana - The Magician, calls on us to claim our power and realize our unique inner magic. It is the card of Manifestation energy and reminds us that the Universe itself is conspiring with us so that we might reach our fullest unbridled potential.

The Magician archetype has inspired humanity throughout ancient and modern history. In almost every culture on earth, we can see this archetype manifest itself. The wise Magician can create magic out of anything. They use their meager resources to create epic magic wherever they go.

Gandalf, Merlin, Yoda, and Dumbledoor are all expressions of The Magician archetype that you may be familiar with. They are the holders of secret knowledge and live by a unique vision, often remaining somewhat separated. The Magician may go by other names depending on where you are in the world - like the Shaman, Sage, Prophet, or Alchemist.

When actualized, The Magician is wise, healing, creative, and transformative. When imbalanced it can point towards a master manipulator more along the lines of the trickery one might expect from A Magician on the Las Vegas strip, or a snake oil salesman. The Magician reminds us to use our power for our highest and best, and the good of the entire Universe. When The Magician shows up in your life, prosperity and power are present with you. Use it wisely.

The Magician in Tarot Through the Ages

We can trace The Magician card back to some of the earliest known Tarot decks, dating all the way back to the 1700’s where he can be found in De Mellet and Levi as more of the trickster than the Wiseman.

The modern interpretation of The Magician as the Magus began to solidify with the Golden Dawn in 1896. This school of thought birthed the well known Rider-Waite (Smith) Tarot Deck that most readers are familiar with today. A majority of our modern tarot decks are based on the basic format of Rider-Waite. The Magician’s secret esoteric name is The Magus of Power, which alludes to the powerful energy of manifestation and transformation that are present with this card.

The Symbolism in The Magician Card

In the classic Rider-Waite (Smith) Tarot Deck we see The Magician pictured as masculine. He stands tall and confidently behind a table holding his sacred tools. He wears a red cloak with white robes and is pictured performing a ritual. The white symbolizes purity and wisdom and the red symbolizes power.

The posture of the Magician is an ancient one that dates back to the beginnings of Astrology. He stands with one hand pointing towards the sky and the other pointing towards the earth. It represents, “as above, so below.” The right hand reaches for the power of the universe, while the left hand grounds down to the earth, so that that power might be made manifest.

Above the head of The Magician is the figure 8 or infinity symbol - also known as the Lemniscate. As in mathematics, this symbolizes infinite cycles present in our lives and within the universe. It represents creation and destruction and the link to the infinite power of Spirit.

In the Magician’s hand is a double pointed wand. The two points represent duality and the balance between opposites. It is a symbol of power and manifestation. It also represents the union between Masculine and Feminine energies.

Moving down the card, we see the snake eating itself at The Magician’s waist. This is called the Ouroboros and it is a symbol that comes from ancient Egyptian times that represents wholeness, wisdom, knowledge, and infinity.

On the table in front of The Magician we see the items representing the four suits of the Minor Arcana - Pentacles, Swords, Cups, and Wands. These represent the four elements - The Magician has mastered all of them. These symbols of the elements are also carved into the table itself. They point to the western alchemical knowledge of the elements Earth, Air, Fire, and Water.

  • Pentacles (coins) = Earth

  • Swords = Air

  • Wands = Fire

  • Cups (chalices) = Water

Around the card we see beautiful flowers, red roses and white lilies surrounded by greenery. The red roses symbolize passion, love, and emotion whereas the white lilies represent truth and purity of purpose. White is also the color of new beginnings and endings and carries the energy of infinity that is shown throughout the card.

Considerations when The Magician Card is Pulled in a Tarot Reading

When The Magician card comes up, powerful forces are at play. First ask yourself if you feel balanced and comfortable with the energy of this card. If it makes you feel anxious or uncomfortable or if you are feeling contraction around it, perhaps it may be pointing towards unrealized potential or untapped power that you have within your soul. It could also be a sign that there is some manipulation happening, whether from you, or someone in your life.

If this card feels good, then you’re on the right track towards manifesting your deepest desires. Consider all the tools that you have at your disposal to make your dreams come true. Like The Magician, you are a master of your Universe, and you have everything you need at your disposal. Take a step back and try to look at the abundance of opportunity available to you.

When this card comes up, consider setting some new intentions and manifestations. Be as specific as possible, and really consider what it is that your soul most desires, then get creative in reaching those goals. You are powerful, you are capable, and you can make your dreams come true.

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