With all of the tools at his disposal, The Magician opens up to the magic of life. He harnesses his alchemical powers to make his dreams a reality. Following The Fool, The Magician is numbered one and symbolises the first of the trump cards of the Major Arcana. The following article describes The Magician Tarot card meaning.
“… in practice, the magic art may be employed for the benefit either of individuals or of the whole community… the public magician occupies a position of great influence, from which, if he is a prudent and able man, he may advance step by step to the rank of chief or king.’The Golden Bough, Sir James Frazer
The Magician Tarot card upright keywords
- Inspired action
The Magician Tarot card reversed keywords
- Wasted talent
- Blocked communication
- Out of balance
- Negative intentions
- Lack of energy
The Magician Tarot card description
A card of wonder and mystery, The Magician stands before a table with an assortment of objects before him. Each object is symbolic to the Tarot as it is representative of the suites of the Minor Arcana. The objects include:
- a sword,
- a pentacle or coin
- a wand, and
- a cup.
The Magician is adorned in robes or is wearing a cloak. He holds one hand to the sky, sometimes with an object in hand, while the other points to the ground.
In every depiction of the card, a lemniscate or infinity symbol ∞ is present. Sometimes the infinity symbol floats directly above The Magician’s head, other times it hides within the rim of his hat.
The Magician is pictured outdoors in a natural setting or surrounded by trees or flowers or similar. In the Robin Wood deck, The Magician’s cloak includes floral decoration.
Key points of The Magician Tarot card
- Planet: Mercury
- Element: Air
- Number: 1
- Hebrew letter: Beit
Symbolism and mythology of The Magician Tarot card
The Magician gets to work. Aware that he is not alone, guided by a higher power, The Magician uses all of the alchemical tools at hand to transform his reality and manifest his desires.
Read more to understand the meaning of The Magician Tarot card in relation to mythology and symbolism in the card.
Cultural significance of magicians
Shamans, wizards and witches, The Magician played a significant role in all societies throughout the history of the world. These deeply spiritually connected beings were well aware that there was a higher power governing operations. Disregarding ego, they opened themselves to the magic of life
From conversing with spirits, counselling with ancestors, gazing into the future and protecting others from negative forces, The Magicians were specially-chosen figures that could communicate between the worlds.
In the Tarot, The Magician’s hands are positioned with one hand raised skyward and the pointing down toward the earth. This indicates his connection between both the spiritual realms and the worldly planes.
In some descriptions, The Magician relates to the Greek goddess of Fate, Nemesis. Also in possession of magical objects – a wand, a wheel, a cup and a sword – Nemesis was able to control these elements to produce any desired outcome she saw fit.
In other depictions, he links to the Greek god Hermes (as he is associated with the planet Mercury) or the Egyptian god Thoth. Both Hermes and Thoth were revered gods of magic with ties to the mysteries of the afterlife.
The Magician Tarot card setting
The Magician is often placed outdoors, in nature, or surrounded by trees or natural elements. Alternately, such as in the Robin Wood deck, the lapels of his cloak are adorned with white roses in bloom.
This presence of trees or flowers hints at the notion of blossoming and growth; that his potential will bloom and his ideas will come to fruition. The presence of the infinity symbol or lemniscate within the card indicates a message of unlimited potential.
The alchemical elements
Scattered on the desk before him lie the four significant tools of the Tarot: the wand, sword, cup and pentacle or coin.
In relation to the Minor Arcana, the four objects or tools represent:
- Pentacles (or coins): Material possessions, finances, work or career
- Swords: Mental activity, thoughts actions
- Wands: Philosophical or spiritual energy, motivations and passions
- Cups: Communication, feelings or emotions
These objects also relate to the four elements:
- Fire and
They further interconnect again as elements:
- Spiritual (fire),
- Emotional (water),
- Physical (earth) and
- Mental (air).
With these objects, The Magician has all of the alchemical tools to create anything he wants.
The Magician Tarot Card Meaning
With the resources at hand, together with powerful psychic abilities, hard work and attentive training, The Magician is able to achieve just about anything he imagines. The ultimate pro-manifestor, by harnessing the creative forces around, The Magician masters his fate and commands his destiny.
Learn about The Magician Tarot card meaning below.
You can manifest your desires
A strong message about manifestation, when you draw The Magician card or are drawn to it, it is a signal that you are equipped for the task at hand. Like the table scattered with magical objects, you have all the tools at your disposal to make your dreams a reality.
From cups, pentacles, swords to wands, to earth, air, fire, water, you have the exact physical, mental, emotional and spiritual resources readily available to you to help you achieve your dreams. If you’re able to bring these elements together and use them along with your positive energy, you’ll be making magic, baby.
The start of a project
Typically, The Magician signals the start of a project or the realisation of a goal. The card gives a sense of destiny and one having control over their future.
When the Magician appears, there’s a strong sense that you can make your creative ideas are worth pursuing. If you’ve had an idea or desire, The Magician appearing in a reading tells you that now is the perfect time to set your plans into motion. The Magician asks you to have a clear vision, to take action, to reach out for the resources readily available to you and to use them intuitively and creatively.
As The Magician is linked with Mercury, there is also a strong element of communication. The winged messenger of the Gods, Mercury could whisper between worlds and converse with both gods and mortals. Like Mercury, The Magician also possesses an incredible gift of communication.
In this respect, drawing The Magician card is a sign that you either are an effective communicator or that your channels of communication and creative expression are and should stay open. You may have a flair for languages, writing or be fantastic at public speaking. It could also mean that your intuitive abilities are activating, or will be.
Learning, training and education
There is also an element of disciplined learning and hard work ascribed to The Magician. If this is relevant to your situation and question, The Magician appearing in a reading may indicate that you are about to learn something from a period of disciplined training.
Perhaps you are working on an intense project or are busy with a course of study. If you are about to begin a project, course or qualification, The Magician is reassuring you and letting you know that you’ve got the unique skills, gifts and talents for success.
Other Names of The Magician
- Le Bateleur
- Der Magier
- Il Mago
- El Mago
The Fool’s journey through the Major Arcana
The first card of the Tarot, The Magician is the first being that The Fool encounters on his journey.
As The Fool sets out on his path, his plans are vague, and he is very consumed with living in the moment. When he meets The Magician, he observes this skilled and very talented communicator. He realises that If he can use the tools at his disposal, he’ll materialise the wishy-washy plans through discipline and action.
Featured image available from Viva Luna Studios.