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The Devil Tarot Card Meaning

The Devil Keywords

UPRIGHT: oppression | addiction | restriction | submission

REVERSED: detachment | liberation | releasing limiting beliefs

The Devil Description

The Devil Tarot card depicts Baphomet, the Horned Goat of Mendes, symbolizing the amalgamation of opposites such as good and evil, and male and female. This figure, often associated with the occult and considered a representation of evil, stands with vampire bat wings, indicating the draining nature of succumbing to base desires. The Devil's hypnotic gaze suggests an ability to ensnare those who fall under his influence, reflecting the theme of control and entrapment.

An inverted pentagram above the figure points to the card's connection with darker magical practices. The Devil's right hand gesture, known as the Vulcan Salute, contrasts its cultural perception with its original meaning as a Jewish blessing. In the card's foreground, a man and a woman stand chained, seemingly trapped, yet the chains are loose, implying that their bondage is self-imposed and escape is possible. The evolving resemblance to the Devil and the presence of tails with symbols of pleasure and lust on the captives highlight the themes of indulgence and the consequences of yielding to one's lower nature.

NOTE: The tarot card meaning description is based on the Rider-Waite deck and Decoding The Cards

Wishing For A Deeper Tarot Connection?

Decoding The Cards goes further than keywords and traditional interprations by providing exercises for each card in the tarot.

The exercises this book are designed to challenge you to delve deeper into the meanings of each card, as well as consider your own personal experiences in relation to the traditional meanings.

The Devil Upright

The Devil card serves as a warning to those who have made foolish or short-sighted decisions. When this card appears, the person has likely placed their own desires and gratification before their long-term well-being — whether through addictions, materialism, bad relationships, or anything else. The Devil reminds us that we all have choices, and it is up to us to make the right ones.


The Devil card encourages you to look closely at your situation, take responsibility, and commit to changing your ways. You can break free from whatever binds you, but only if you are willing to take the steps necessary for lasting change. So if the Devil appears in your Tarot reading, be brave and honest with yourself, and take action today to create a better tomorrow. 

The Devil Reversed

The Devil reversed symbolizes liberation, representing the ability to take back control of our lives and break away from things or situations that have been holding us back. It could indicate giving up addictions, leaving behind a hostile environment, or breaking any other habits that have been preventing us from growing and moving forward. 


Additionally, it can be a reminder to release any limiting beliefs that we may have and instead embrace the power of our own potential. 


Finally, when the Devil card is reversed, it could also suggest that some deep, dark secrets are being kept from others, causing us internal suffering. It is important to acknowledge these secrets so we can move forward in our lives and free ourselves from these inner burdens. 

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