Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tarot Tuesday: The Magician

Can there be any other candidate than Batman for the role of Magician?

1. The Magician (Batman)
Sure, I guess there could be - actual magic users like Zatanna or Dr. Fate being the prime alternative candidates - but for a card that represents skill, willpower, dedication, and a good deal of self-improvement, I think Batman's the one. Maybe it's just me, but The Magician has always been an aspirational card in the tarot deck. That is, when you get your first deck and you're just shuffling through looking at the pictures, The Magician is the dude you want to be.

Same thing with Batman. Given his Just A Guy status, he's certainly the most identifiable of the classic DC heroes. In the twisted logic of not-real realism, people think, "Hey, with an unlimited budget and total dedication, I could be Batman too." Of course, we can't and being Batman is just not a practical way to fight crime in the absence of comic book villainy, but still, we dream.

Just as we dream of being granted access to the mysteries of the universe via a deck of cards we picked up at a Border's going out of business sale. Step 1: Pledge Self. Step 2: ?????? Step 3: Become Batman and/or Magician.

Batman is the Magician because he worked for his abilities. Sometimes he had to be a bit cunning in obtaining the training he desired, but he built himself from the ground up, something that gives him a unique inward looking perspective on himself and his role in the world. Contrast that to Zatanna, who is a Homo Magi (ie, born with her powers) or Fate whose powers stem from his magic helmet.

So we go with Batman, sitting alone at his computer, hidden away in the sanctum sanctorum that is the Batcave. The keyboard is his altar, the tap tap tapping of keys his sacred litany, and the display on screen his revelation.

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