Temperance and The Devil

The next two cards – Temperance and The Devil – see two of the four angels in the major arcana spurring us once more to look inwards before we can move on.

Temperance tells us that we need to bring balance into our lives and The Devil makes an entrance when we’re wobbling over our own personal pit of powerlessness.

We can all recognise the need for balance, but just the thought of dealing with The Devil can paralyse us with fear.

The very fact that he’s in the major arcana means that, sooner or later, we’re going to meet him, but when we do it’s just as much as sign that we’re ready to delve deep and release ourselves from whatever is tightening his grip on us as it is a warning that we’ve given way to excess.

So be willing to suspend any judgements you might have about him, and read on!


One foot in water and the other on land, an Angel achieves the impossible by pouring liquid diagonally from one chalice to another.

Especially relevant as we often feel pulled in many different directions and slaves to many diverse roles we play in our lives, Temperance tells us it’s time to put the balance back.

Strength has already illustrated the importance of using feminine energies to contain masculine power and The Chariot showed us that we can use our mind to hold together forces that otherwise might blow us apart, so how is Temperance different?

Temperance says we’re working too much at the expense of our personal lives, or partying so hard that we’re neglecting our health.  We’re out of whack.

But the inclusion of the angel is a promise of a little divine help offered to add to our human efforts if we’re willing to restore harmony to our existence.

Connect with the card

Take a piece of paper and draw a spoked wheel.  Each spoke represents a different aspect of your life.  Label one spoke work, another health, a third personal relationships, the fourth goals and ambitions.

Add as as many spokes as are relevant to you.  Now mark each spoke with numbers at equal spaces from one to ten radiating out from the centre.

When you’ve done that, go around and give a score for each part of your life.  For example, you might score your work eight and your health three.

Take your pen again and draw a line, joining up the scores around the spokes of your wheel.  If you’ve still got a perfectly round wheel, congratulations!  Your life is in balance.

If you’re left with a jagged line that zig-zags between extremes on your scores, it’s hardly surprising that your life isn’t turning as smoothly as it could, so get to work and re-energise those areas that need your attention!


I deserve harmony and balance in my life.

The Devil

Welcome to the world of the master showman!  According to some, the Devil was an angel who turned against God.

Driven out of heaven, he appointed himself as ruler of the material world.  As Tsar of the Tangible, he is a fabulous illusionist and can trick you into seeing things that just aren’t there to pull you into your own personal hell.

Classic interpretations of this card talk about addictions, control and manipulation and he is usually associated with sex and all kinds of intoxicants, from obsessive love to the pursuit of power for its own sake.

He turns up in a spread when you’ve fallen for his arch-magician trickery and the whole of your life collapses in the unhealthy pursuit of something.

Dealing with the Devil doesn’t mean living like a monk.  It means taking notice when something turns from fun to compulsion, or when something that brings us pleasure becomes an addiction.

Deeper esoteric doctrine says that the Devil has accepted his role so that we can experience ourselves as truly powerful by our realisation that we have placed ourselves in bondage and have the keys to our freedom at any point we want to use them.

Maybe his bad reputation is just another aspect of his clever trickery after all and, rather than being against God, he is just part of an overall divine plan in that conquering the Devil takes us one step closer to realising the infinite power in us all.

Connect with the card

The crystal amethyst releases us from addictions.  Place one in your bath and soak in its liberating essence, or put one in a bottle of water overnight, remove the stone and drink in its goodness.

Carry one with you – tuck one in your bra if necessary!  Be willing to soften must haves to maybes, and then only if it’s actually good for me.

Connecting with The Devil doesn’t mean an encounter with Old Nick, it means looking within and shining the light of consciousness on your compulsions and seeing them for what they really are.

We’ve all had those moments of moving from obsession to ‘what was I thinking?’.  Know that as you release yourself you shrink the big bad boy to the harmless little goat he is.


I am willing to see beyond all illusions to realise the divine power within me.

Just when you thought it was time to take a rest – next we face the ultimate trial on our soul’s journey as we encounter the drama and disruption of The Tower, followed by the quiet promise of The Star.

Article written by Michele Knight, first published in Spirit and Destiny Magazine

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