The Magician

The Magician/The Magus

For some 15 years now I’ve often considered the possibilities contained in the Tarot as important psychological tools. It has a depth and quality about it that has not been made available to our modern times. So lately, the Magician card keeps flashing into my brain in connection with Design Thinking (and I ain’t talking about your Las Vegas variety magician).

Almost invariably, the Magician’s greatest influence, or power, is considered to be the power of Will. But he has two opposite sides to his personality. “This being so,” says one writer, “and especially because he is duality, he represents both truth and falsehood, wisdom and folly. Being the unexpected, he unsettles any established idea, and therefore appears tricky.”

Still, it is told that “no true image is possible at all” when considering the Magician, so anything we can say, will be incomplete at best.

So then, even though he has two sides to him (for example: good/evil, mercy/judgment, night/day, male/female, etc.) the Magician has the ability to harmonize or balance the two through sheer Will.

I’ve been thinking about this image especially because I’ve been plunging head first into Design Thinking, especially as it relates to business, art, and general thinking models. I find Design Thinking to be the latest incarnation of Dialectic, and for me, no image embodies this dialectic more than the Magician. Well, there’s the Holy Trinity of the Christians, but that’s another matter entirely, and I’m hungry right now.