In-depth meaning: The Devil is an inward looking card. It points to those things the Subject might be ashamed of and would be reluctant to share with, or exhibit, to the outside world. The Devil can represent many different internal facets of behaviour, and they range widely with the hold they can have over the Subject. The most recognisable might be certain sexual fantasies and desires, different kinds of addictions and, of course, abuse. The Devil can also represent restrictive lifestyles, relationships, and issues with boundaries. Whatever it is, it brings about feelings of shame, fear and anxiety within the Subject.
It is time to deal with the situation rather than continue be controlled by it. If it is self-destructive or addictive behaviour, it is time to open up and be honest – seek support and guidance where appropriate. Likewise, if the Subject feels bound by a long held secret, maybe it is time to bring it into the open, so they can be free of the burden. The message in this card is to admit to these binds, and make effort to overcome them, in order to be able to move on to a lighter way of life.
Notes on the image: In the picture, the Devil appears to have some control over the woman who is kneeling on the ground with her face in her hands, and she is clearly distressed. She is surrounded by hell fire and appears to be trapped and doomed. However, she is not chained or bound, in any way, and could make a bid for freedom if she chose to.
Here The Devil represents situations, addictions, behaviours, or relationships, that have become overwhelming and constricting. The subject is encouraged to find out where they can regain control of their life by facing their demons rather than succumbing to them, so they can create a better reality.