I. The Magus

The Juggler

The Lord of Illusion

The Wisdom, the Will, the Word, the Logos by whom the worlds were created.Tarot Cover.I

Being the unexpected, he unsettles any established idea.

Being creative, he has no conscience.



  • Unconscious Will
  • Messenger of the Gods
  • Law of Necessity or Chance
  • Fluidic Basis of All Transmission of Activity
  • Continuous Creation
  • Action in All Forms and Phases
  • Interpretation is the root of misinterpretation
  • Fulfillment of Potential
  • Duality



  • Tree of LifeMercury is the Path leading from Kether (the Crown) to Binah (Understanding), thus he is the messenger of the gods, the Word of creation whose speech is Silence.

Treeoflife0Second emanation from the Crown; adult form of the Fool, the Unity. It is the nature of these ideas to flow one into another.


  • The Will: The Son, the manifestation in act of the idea of the Father


  • The Word: Gospel of st. John: in the beginning was the word; and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

The law of reason or of necessity or chance, which is the secret meaning of the Word (the factors, seemingly out of our control – be they subconscious or external – which influence action and come before logical decision)

One arm points up, the other down. As above, so below.

Wand with a knob at both ends reflecting dual polarity of electricity, but also the hallowed wand of Prometheus which brings down fire from Heaven.

“With the Wand createth He.

With the Cup preserveth He.

With the Daggee destroyeth He.

With the Coin redreemeth He.”

Liber Magi vv. 7-10

  • Duality: truth and falsehood, wisdom and folly


  • Hanuman: flying monkey god of Hindu mythology.

Some stories tell him as an incarnation of Shiva, others his son.

Son of the wind.

Prankster as a child

Epitome of wisdom.

Rama’s messenger.

Hanuman Chalisa (translated): monkey god and devotee of Rama, grant us the power of higher life-force (prana) that elevates the mind and increases our devotion.

  • Tahuti or Thoth: Head of the ibis; concentration (meditative spirit, possibly reference to the secret of the Aeon of Osiris; that male intervention is necessary for having children)

Bears a phoenix wand (resurrection through the generative process; multiple incarnations) and Ankh (breath of life)

Alternatively: Style and Papyrus (transmits words of the gods and records their acts)

It was seen from very early times that the use of speech or writing meant the introduction of ambiguity at best, and falsehood at worst; Thoth was therefore followed by an Ape (Cynocephalus, a sacred Egyptian baboon with the face of a dog) whose business was to distort the Word of God; to mock, to simulate, and to decieve.

Other myths suggest that Thoth created himself through the power of language.

Shapeshifter: could turn into a babboon.

The Ogdoad were created from his song.

Thought to have invented writing, medicine, magic, and the Egyptian’s civil and religious practices (shared music with Hathor)

Recorded the verdict of the dead; He Who Balances

Voice of Ra

Author of Every Work on Every Branch of Knowledge, Both Human and Divine

The One Who Made Calculations Concerning the Heavens, the Stars, and the Earth.

Overcame the curse of Ra, allowing Nut to give birth to her five children (a myth regarding a change of calendar), with his skill at games.


  • Astrological MercuryPlanet of connections; everything that links and conveys; synchronicity; the magical crossroads at which the observer stands to see the similarity of meaning in the converging strands of various causes and effects.

Meeting place of Mind and Matter; logic, wit, and reason are brought into play.

The ancestor of every action is thought, and how we say something is often more important than why we say it.

Words trigger attitudes and set up resonances up resonances of their own, continuing to do their work even when the attention is elsewhere.

Bridge between the self and the world.

Shows how one can ‘hijack’ people, places, and situations to our best advantage – the way one can go about getting their way.

  • Hermes: Messenger for Zeus, and his son by Maia of the Pleiadies, and guide to the underworld.

Trickster Child.

God of language, writing, travellers, thieves and cunning, herdsmen, teaching, athletics, astrology and astronomy.

Carried herald’s wand Greek ‘kerykeion’, Latin ‘caduceus’

Origin of Hermetic texts

Inventor of language, guide of the dead, son and messenger of God.

Said to have written the book of Thoth, ‘Hermetic’ text relating to sacred knowledge of the gods.

  • Caduceus: contains a complete symbol of the Gnosis.

Winged sun (phallus) = joy of life on all planes from the lowest to the highest.

Serpents = active and passive = Eagle and Lion

Unites Microcosm and Macrocosm, and the symbol of the Magical operation which accomplishes this.

Life itself, and is of universal application.

Wings added in 2nd century CE, but did not become popular until 15th century.

Not to be confused with staff of Asklepios (one snake on a wooden staff), which is a symbol of healers.

  • Loki: Originally a chaotic neutral symbol, was changed to an evil chaotic one by Christian invaders.

Shapeshifter. Androgyne (takes on both male and female forms/roles). Magician.

Trickster; beyond concepts of “good” and “evil”. Works his will at all costs.

Pre-viking myths point to an earlier version of Loki as a creator god. The Poetic Edda also references Odin, Lodur (associated with Loki), and Hoenir as those who gave life to the first humans, with Lodur providing them with Life Fire.

In Santeria, is the most important of the Orisha. Without his blessing, nothing can proceed. Allows prayers to reach the Orisha. Facilitates divination.

The first to test our integrity and our word. “Because of this quality many followers of Santeria consider Elegba to be a trickster or a troublemaker. At our church we prefer to think of him as the great experimenter, always testing humanity to see what will happen next.”

  • In the Vision of the Universal Mercury, Hermes is seen descending upon the sea, which refers to Mary. (The path of Beth on the Tree of Life shows him descending from Kether, the Crown, upon Binah, the Great Sea)

To continue the identification, compare Christ’s descent into hell with the function of Hermes as guide of the dead.

It may be noted here that Mercury and Venus are the planets between us and the Sun, as if the son and mother were mediators between the Earth and the father.

3 days for Mercury to become visible after separating from the orb of the sun, compared to Christ’s resurrection after 3 days

  • The Lord of Illusion: Vi Veri Vniversum Vivus Vici = By the power of truth, I, while living, have conquered the universe


  • Universal Solvent: water & blood. sperm & amniotic fluid & menstrual blood


  • Alkahest: hypothetical universal solvent. Paracelcius’ philosophers’s Stone. Dissolve anything into it’s elements.

Sal alkali: caustic potash in alcohol. Caustic lime, alcohol, and carbonate of potash.

  • Azoth: started as hypothetical universal solvent, later became term for element Mercury.

Symbol was caduceus

Name is medieval Latin, an alteration of Azoc, derived from Arabic al-zā’būq, “the mercury”

As the Universal Life Force, the Azoth is the animating energy of the body and the inspiration and enthusiasm that move the mind.

“light of nature”, or “mind of God”

Philosopher’s Stone: Ignis et Azoth fibi sufficiunt

Azoth is related to Ain Soph

“Azoth, or Universal Medicine, is, for the soul, supreme reason and absolute justice; for the mind, it is mathematical and practical truth; for the body it´s the quintessence, which is a combination of gold and light. In the spiritual world, it is the First Matter of the Great Work, the source of the enthusiasm and activity of the alchemist. In the mental world, it is intelligence and industry. In the material world, it is physical labor.

Sulfur, Murcury, and Salt, which, volatized and fixed alternatively, compose the Azoth of the sages. Sulfur corresponds to Fire, Mercury to Air and Water, Salt to Earth.” – Eliphas Levi, Transcendental Magic

Believed by Aleister Crowley to represent a unity of beginnings and endings by tying together the first and last letters of ancient alphabets (A, Aleph & Alpha) (Z, final in Latin) (O, final in Greek) (Th, final in Hebrew). Universal synthesis of opposites as a ´cancellation’ (i.e. solvent) or cohesion (i.e. medicine)

  • Schamayin: “(hebrew for ‘heaven’) who is Androgyne, who is Divine Fiery Water, the first outflow of the Word of God, the flaming river pouring from the presence of the eternal mind.

Universal Mercury or Azoth – the measureless spirit of life.

This original spiritual fiery water comes through Edem (”vapor” in Hebrew) and pours itself into the four main rivers of the four Elements.

In this Edem (vaporous essence or mist) is the first, or spiritual Earth, the incomprehensible and intangible dust out of which God formed Afam Kadmom, the spiritual body of man” – Manly P. Hall, The Secret Teachings of All Ages

Divinatory Interpretations:

Skill, wisdom, adroitness, elasticity, craft, cunning, deceit, theft.

Sometimes occult wisdom or power, sometimes a quick impulse, a “brain-wave”.

It may imply messages, business transactions, the interference of learning or intelligence with the matter in hand.



Want to explore more of the trickster archetype? Check out this article by Mat Auryn

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