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The (Im)Practical Magician

by Stephen Stevie Cole 8 months ago in History
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Queer Tarot, pt 2

This is part 2 of a series casting a queer eye over the Tarot cards.

(Part 1 can be found Here - and before I continue, be assured the word "Queer" is for me always a term of pride, never of shame)

For those not in the know, Tarot is a deck of cards that adds a set of symbols to the traditional playing card designs, to represent life's journey, both inner and outer. The oldest decks we know of, came into Europe around the same time as Romani Travellers did, and shared some similarities with Qabalistic teachings - but whether either of those things tells us the Tarot's true origin is anyone's guess. The modern design is mostly due to the biracial, bisexual artist Pamela "Pixie" Colman Smith.

The figure in the cards who stands for the one taking the journey, is The Fool - and the first face he encounters is The Magician. The set of cards following the Magician are gendered pairs - High Priest & High Priestess; Emperor & Empress. Our friend the Magician, by contrast, combines the traits of other cards - including all the symbols of the four suits - Sword, Wand, Cup & Coin.

Cultures across the world, throughout history, have seen those whose gender or sexuality was what we today would call Queer, to be somehow magical - either divine or demonic. Is this part of the meaning the Magician card contains? I asked a variety of queer readers and seekers; what follows is based on their answers.

The Magician is a representation of bringing your will into existence, manifesting the reality you want to see, through resourcefulness and willpower. But it's also about change and transformation; intentionally changing aspects of your life. For a trans person, the Magician can mean so much.

The alchemy of resourcefulness, plus willpower to change, applies to more than just transitioning; it can be used to represent coming out, pursuing physical and/or social transition, and making your truth of who you are into a tangible thing the world can see. Pursuing the type of relationship YOU want and rejecting heteronormativity.

Queerness is within us. We have this beautiful, special, authentic self inside of us, and all the tools we need in order to bring it out into the light and show the world our magic.

One potential teaching offered in Witchcraft is that as Queer people, we have a special role. Being in a space of "other" allows us to transcend more easily an understanding of sexes and genders.

Some also see in the card the Magician choosing to stake their claim, to be the intermediary. We as Queer people may have to do the same thing otherwise someone else may do it for us, as history has demonstrated.

Empowerment of our own reality by first challenging assumptions, then understanding where such ideas come from, then running circles around them. In queer terms, the Magician can be very much a figure who would scream from the hilltops that we should overcome cisheteronormativity.

The Magician is power, having the potential and ability to manifest change, to shape the world around you. It speaks volumes about the power of coming out and being our authentic selves. It is the ultimate beginning, an awakening of power, which can map easily onto claiming our own power in our queerness and living in it.

Creating change in accordance with will, one definition of magic, iswhat gives our Magician their strong connection with gender transition. Bringing the outside form into alignment with inner truth requires power and commitment and also makes a clearer channel for our power to flow. And our authentic self expression changes the world around us.

An old magical maxim is "As above, so below".

So maybe the Magician might also say, it's good to be vers!

~*~

To have an online Tarot reading from this kind of perspective, you can reach me Here

And if you want to join a new and growing LGBTQIA+ Tarot facebook group, you'll find it Here

Enjoy!

History

About the author

Stephen Stevie Cole

Genderfluid

Socialist

Actor/actress

Tarot reader

Attracted to magic both practical & impractical

Writer of short stories and philosophical musings

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