The Basilisk

The Basilisk is a truly horrifying beast, reputed to be the most poisonous creature on earth. This giant snake, King of the Serpents, can kill with a single glance. Even its breath causes plants to wither as it passes, while stones crack under the force of its gaze. Born from a toad’s egg hatched by a cockerel, the Basilisk grows to an enormous size, slithering semi-upright through its lair, bringing death to all who encounter it.

It is said that the best way to kill a Basilisk is to carry a mirror, so that the beast is forced to see its own fateful reflection. Encountering the Basilisk is not only terrifying, but confusing and disorienting too, as you must look away from the direction you are heading in order to keep yourself safe.

For this reason, the Basilisk card represents confusion and clouded judgement; this card shows up when the way ahead is not clear and when it is difficult to make an informed decision.

Although the Basilisk can be wounded by weapons like spears and swords, so poisonous is its very essence that the weapon absorbs the poison, sabotaging the attacker’s efforts and ultimately proving fatal. Hence the Basilisk card also appears when someone or something is thwarting our efforts, or deliberately sabotaging our path.

When you draw the Basilisk card, keep your wits about you. You are likely not thinking clearly, so your first conclusions are probably wrong. If you are working hard towards a goal but consistently failing, consider whether someone else might be working against you behind the scenes.

Remember however that the Basilisk is a warning that we can confuse and deceive ourselves just as easily as we can fall prey to someone else’s malice. Your confusion may well be of your own making. Take a step back and try to set aside your emotions for a time so that you can think more clearly.

The Basilisk card shows the King of the Serpents in his lair, surrounded by prey skeletons, withered vegetation and cracked rocks. He rears upwards, about to strike. To save yourself, you must look away – but then, how can you know if you are running away from danger or towards it?

As you contemplate this card, ask yourself the following questions: what is clouding your judgement? Why are you so confused? Is it possible that someone is working against you, or are you simply too close to the issue and unable to see the way ahead clearly?

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