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Fairytale Tarot (MRP) -- The Devil

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Master_Margarita  Master_Margarita is offline
Join Date: 01 Oct 2007
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Fairytale Tarot (MRP) -- The Devil

The Devil is brilliantly illustrated in this deck by the Hans Christian Andersen tale of "The Red Shoes," which can be read in full here.

I frankly think the ending of this tale is a little lame (no pun intended)--why does the girl Karen die so quickly? It seems like the author finished her off to make the story end neatly (and the ending of this tale really isn't what this card is about).

To those of us in modern times who have many pairs of shoes, it can be hard for us to assume the mindset of someone who is too poor to own even a single pair of shoes, and to understand the shocking extravagance of picking a pair of red shoes as your primary pair if someone else is footing the bill (also no pun intended). It's also hard to relieve a time when wearing red shoes to church would be considered wicked.

The Devil in this card is very much a card about evil in a social context. Karen is obsessed with her red shoes because she is emulating a princess. She is preoccupied with the shoes (vain earthly concerns) when she is in church and supposed to be directing her attention to spiritual matters.

She is unable to cure her obsession even by cutting off her feet. The shoes haunt her, and bar her way to the church.

The hint of the story is that the old soldier with the red beard is the Devil, yet Karen's obsession with the shoes predates his entry into the story.

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