Ayin - eye - bondage
15. The Devil
Sphere 6 - 8 (Tiphareth to Hod)
So here I sit trying to think of what to write. Next up for me is key 15, other wise known as the Devil, or in the deck I use, Temptation. Somehow, deep down in our being, we know we have a spark of that divine energy, that comes from the creator, or source, of all life. That which makes us alive. But are we really alive? Or are we just having a dream of being in a human body, with our eyes as the projector.
For if this is the case, then everything changes, and the Devil is really our savior in disguise. For it will show us, through what we see, that which keeps us separated from this truth. The truth that we are sparks of divine light having a human experience. For what we actually see isn't necessarily even what is there, it is what our "mind" chooses to see, and focus on.
Not only that, there are the rules of the game. Who wrote the game? Well, on some level, we did. But most are not ready to own that possibility. For it is indeed a conundrum. If we are eternal beings who already exist in a perfected state, then what could possibly be going on here, this dream where there are predators and prey, where everything we see, or think we see, may not be what it seems. How could we be experiencing such extremes, where the good of heart seem to get punished, and those driven by greed, lust, and a need for some imagined sense of control, seem to get rewarded with the top spots on the totem pole of life?
But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves. The Hebrew letter, Ayin, means eye, as well as indicating "foundation". According to Paul Foster Case, in The Tarot: A Key to the Wisdom of the Ages, the eye is "the organ of sight", and though an orb, "vision is limited by the circle of the horizon; through the eye we see appearances only" and therefore "the eye represents the limitation of the visible, and the bondage of ignorance resulting from the acceptance of these limitations and appearances as being all there is."
So, how does an eye relate to foundation? It is interesting to think about. From even before we are born we have more than just what we see with our physical eyes to receive information from and about the reality we are experiencing. But it is also true that once we enter the physical world after being born, our primary source for determining what is going on in our world is through the windows of perception, our eyes. But it is not just with our eyes alone. For the moment we draw breath, we have an unconscious recorder going, and outside authorities telling us how to interpret what we see. Our reality, hence, becomes separated from the rest of our senses, in almost imperceptible ways, and becomes more and more shaped by our expectations and by how we have been taught to interpret our experience.
It becomes subtly hijacked, in many cases, to where our other senses, such as how does a situation feel, smell, taste, and sound, becomes secondary, or completely ignored. Thus, our eyes, when seen in this way, can lie to us. But, like anything not built on firm foundations, that reality can come crashing down on us, when the tower of lies becomes too unstable to hold us up anymore. But that is for the next key to ponder.
We have seen over and over again the limitations of basing our understanding of experience on only what we have been programmed to see. And we each of us participate in that programming along the way. Therefore, it becomes imperative, to learn to see with eyes anew. To question everything we think we know, and learn once again to activate all our senses, so as to ferret out a fuller picture of what is truth, as opposed to remaining bound to outside authorities, who, in truth, have their own agenda. And this agenda, under closer scrutiny, may not really lead us to the path of liberation. True freedom can never really be granted by an outside authority. This is the lesson I have taken away from meditating on this keys deeper meaning.
Unfortunately, life often has to become an almost unbearable challenge, for most to embrace change, and move into a state of self reflection. I have noticed that many who seem to have an easy ride this time around seem to feed their egos, their little eye, to the point where their ability to tune in to the bigger eye of perception that remains hidden under the surface, becomes the enemy to avoid at all costs. It becomes so buried that when any truth of a more expanded nature threatens to surface, it is immediately pushed away. So accustomed have they become to a life of ease, that they simply cannot release their rigid, though in actuality very tentative, hold on reality.
The hold of D' evil becomes almost absolute. But even this too is an illusion. The scale will always tip in the other direction, when the weight of the imbalance becomes too great.