Musing on the Fool’s Journey: The Fool Meets the Magician and the High Priestess

I am a storyteller by nature. I write as part of the writing team of Marilu Mann with my best friend, Cai Smith. Together we have three novels currently under contract with Ellora’s Cave Publishing. You can find out more about that here if you like. I also write a column for Tarot World magazine. (UPDATE: This magazine suffered a dismal death.) That column is called Fool’s Corner which is geared towards offering information to help anyone beginning their journey with Tarot.

I wanted to tell a story about the Fool as he went about his travels through the other Major Arcana. Most Tarot decks start with 0, Zero, Void, the Fool. The Fool is so fluid as he dances through the other 21 Majors. Here is his first encounter with something other than his own brash impulsive nature. Consider how his first impulsive step hurtles him into the path of the other cards.

The day dawned sunny and bright. Our hero, known to everyone as The Fool, decided that such a lovely day deserved a journey. So he grabbed a cloth and put a few things he found important in it then twisted it up on a stick. Whistling for his companion, The Fool headed out the door.

Coming to a split in the road, The Fool had to make a decision. As he never worried too much about these things, The Fool closed his eyes and twirled about three times. Then he took the the fork in front of him.

As he sauntered down the path, he hummed a merry tune. Those notes died in his throat when he saw a strange sight. A man in robes stood before a stone table.

The Fool, never one to keep silent, blurted out, “What are all these things about you, sir? Why do you need them? I only have my dog and my bag on my stick. I trust that the Universe will provide for me as I go throught my journey. Do you?”

“Ah, young one, you have just begun and I am only the beginning. The objects you see are the Wand of Movement, the Sword of Inspiration, the Cup of Love and the Coin of Prosperity. Once I was as you were. Then I found that I could create what I wanted if I had the tools and the key.”

“The key?” The Fool perked his ears like a dog might when they sight a cat.”What is the key? Can you give me this key?”

“I can give you the name of the key, young one, but you must find it within yourself. The name is Will. You must find it for yourself or it means nothing. And all the tools in the world are nothing without it.”

The Magician turned back to his tools and focused once again. He called energy from the Earth and Sky into himself to be forged into his own Intent.

And the Fool journeyed on wondering where he might find this Will that the Magician spoke of.

As the Fool wandered down his path looking for Will. He asked a butterfly he passed if it had seen Will?

“No, but the Lady might know! Follow me!”

So the Fool followed the butterfly to a clearing. There sat a lady in blue robes upon a stone throne. She wore a veil over her face. To either side of her stood two pillars. One was marked with a B and the other a J.

“Hello!” The Fool ran up to the Lady.

The Lady did not respond. She merely gazed at him and smiled enigmatically. The Fool cocked his head so that the bells on his jester hat rang merrily.

“Hello? Do you not speak my language?” He offered again.

The Lady smiled still. She pointed first to the black pillar and then to the white one. Then she held out a scroll to the Fool. He took it and unrolled it.

“Lady? There is nothing here! It’s blank. Is this a joke? Are you mocking a poor Fool on a journey to somewhere?” The Fool’s mouth pulled down at the corners as a frown threatened to take over.

Finally she spoke to him. Her voice, low and melodious, sounded as if it came from somewhere deep within.

“Fool, if thou can not find what thou seekest within, then thou shalt never find it.”

She paused. “What I mean to say is… look inside for Will, not outside. Will is within you. The scroll is so that you can write down what you learn on your journey. I have looked at the oracles and all I can tell you is that your journey will be long. There will be perils and trials and challenges that you will have to face and overcome. ”

The Fool bowed to the Lady and tucked the scroll into his belt.

“Lady? May I ask who you are?”

She nodded. “I am the High Priestess. I am She who holds the Sacred Mysteries. To learn more you must pass through my pillars into the realms of Mystery and Beauty. Will you come this way?”

She swept her robes aside to reveal a path to the East.

The Fool looked down the path he was on. Then he looked at the Path she offered.

“Yes Lady, I will. I will travel the path to the Mysteries.” He moved towards the path she revealed, but suddenly it was gone.

“Lady? What is this? Do you tease me with knowledge?”

“Fool, you are already on the right path. Set your nose forward and meet the next One on your journey. Seek you the Empress. ”

The Fool nodded and thanked the Lady again. Then he set out towards the forest he could see far ahead of him.

To be continued (all rights reserved) (c) Stephanie Arwen Lynch