The Devil — Tarot of the Absurd

Friday, December 7th, 2012

“Tell me,” said the Young Man, “tell me.”

“Tell me of the Devil.”

“Oh, the Devil,”

spoke the Poet. “Of him I speak with foul mouth

and forked tongue. For when it comes to Devils,

who can speak the truth?”

 

*   *   *

 

A lone man alone, remote in his perversion,

honed in upon his own self-pleasure,

self-centered on the center of his own self,

this Devil has snagged his soul in a noose.

Hooped over in a loop, twisted and bent,

his mind and mouth deformed, reformed to form

a conjoined single-purpose pleasure apparatus

body contorted, diverged from human form,

cloistered in self-worship, his cracked mind

wanders on a twisted pleasure path,

sequestered in mad obsession of

self-consuming passion or rabid addiction

to hedonistic compulsion.

Forsaken and forsaking all society,

this Devil has found Devil’s work

for idle hands and idle mouth to do.

Chained in shackles to the conceit of his desire,

the Devil plays the Devil with himself.

 

 

15. The Devil — The Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Yuri ShakovArtist: Yuri Shakov

[I was shuffling this deck & out fluttered the devil.]

Right-side-up: “Ravage, Bondage, Malevolence. Subservience. Downfall. Weird experience. Bad outside influence or advice. Black magic. Unexpected failure. Inability to realize goals. Violence. Shock. Fatality. Self-punishment. Temptation to evil. Self-destruction.”
Up-side-down: “Release from bondage. Throwing off shackles. Divorce. Recognition of one’s needs by another person. Overcoming severe handicaps. The beginning of spiritual understanding.”

 

“The Devil’s face resembles Josef Stalin, who ruled the U.S.S.R. for thirty years. His powerful body symbolized the intensity of his power, tattoos represent his power’s criminal nature, and bat wings symbolize its extent. The marshall’s star above him is the symbol of his victories, the horns show the devilish cunning with which he holds his winnings. The two eyes on his chest are the vigilance of the secret police. The Devil’s chains trap a man and a woman, deprived of civil rights.”

 

Ultimately, the Devil takes on a great amount of responsibility. It is those who have taken on the responsibility of excessive power who have the greatest tendency to be devil-like.

 

“With great power comes great responsibility,” said Uncle Ben to Peter Parker via Francois-Marie Arouet aka Voltaire, who was disturbed by the sickening abuse of authority and privilege by those in power whilst the poor and deprived starved and suffered around him. Not much has changed.

 

Voltaire wrote a lot in days when not as many people write when they do now (there were no bloggers in the 18th century) so it is quite possible someone else said it first and Voltaire was the first to write it down, ableit in French. He also wrote “The multitude of books is making us ignorant” somewhere in one of his over 20,000 letters and over 2,000 books and pamphlets.

 

I believe I have spent enough time reading. It is time, once again, to go outside the book and learn something on my own.

Three of Swords — La Corte dei Tarocchi

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

 

Artist: Anna Maria D’Onofrio

 

[I didn’t really want to draw this card. I wanted the one above it, but this one fell out of the deck so I felt obliged to take it.]

 

The three of swords is
that normal-sort of heartbreak—
when you live and things hurt
because you are willing to feel them.

 

If you aren’t willing to feel
nothing hurts
but that is not living.

 

It is very difficult to stay not-living
while walking on this earth.
Not even people-hating people are non-living.
People-hating people hurt and hate
and maybe live in heartache more
than you or I with broken hearts.

 

Zombie-people are the sort
who never draw the three of swords.
I do not know what sort of cards they draw—
they have no future and no past because
they are not present.

 

Maybe, soul-less, they draw the devil every time
and devils only devils.
Maybe I am wrong— perhaps
they draw threes of swords one after another—
threes and threes of swords that scream—
feel something! feel something!— but—
they cannot hear because
they are not present. Silence.

 

Zombie is a state of deep, near-death addiction
where times of lucidity are so few or never that
no light comes in and then there is no point
and then there is no living— real death—
beyond which there cannot be feeling like we feel—
feeling that makes us alive.
Feeling makes us alive. Be thankful and
be thankful for the three of swords.