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Friday, April 21, 2006

Comments

Michael

I've long thought that it is very possible to see the serpent as the real hero of the Eden myth, bringing knowledge of good and evil to the humans whereas God wanted them to remain in a state of perpetual childlike innocence, unable to do anything wrong but also unable to really act as adult beings. Juxtaposed with the symbol of a Magician, one able to manipulate nature -- whether by using tools and technologies or through real magic -- to accomplish an end, the card could be taken to suggest the importance of wielding power tempered by awareness. Use power to do good or, if using it for evil, at least be aware that that is what you're doing and that it can bring consequences you must be willing to accept.

Lynda

oh yea, I think you're dead-on right here. I believe that the snake features in that story precisely because it *was* a sacred symbol of rival religions in the local area, so it was made the bad guy - that is, the esoteric knowledge of the opposing faction was twisted into being regarded as a source of evil (just as the Tower of Babel story is a put down of a babylonian temple / observatory - 'attempting to talk to the gods' via reading the stars).

But in the context of the magician who is using knowledge to manifest will, the snake as a guardian of knowledge makes perfect sense.

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