Lucifer 3: What is the Third Side?

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A challenge that comes with being a fortune-teller is providing a novel and useful perspective. Even though fortune-telling is as unreasonable a practice as any that exists, you who read this book (and I who write it!) will attempt to squeeze answers out of Tarot cards in response to every-day problems. We expect to find something grand, but I think in our hearts we know that what we'll get is going to be little better (and maybe worse) than what we'd hear from an Agony Aunt in the newspaper. Therefore, if you're going to make the most of the Tarot, you must capture the third side.

Suppose you have a relationship question: "I love him and want to be with him—will he leave his wife to start a family with me?" The first side of this conversation might say that you're wrong to cheat with him and you should leave a man who's almost certain to break your heart.

The second side of this conversation might say that you should persist in winning his affection and convince him to make ever greater displays of his love until the day that he breaks down and gives you all that you desire. 

And then, the third side would be to accept that you've got a prime opportunity to simply enjoy yourself and give him as much commitment as he's giving you—which is to say, none, so you're naturally free to keep another boy-toy on the side. 

Is the third-side what you really want? I’m of the opinion that it doesn’t matter, because a startling third-side perspective can polarize you into identifying what you don't want and then use that mirror image to identify what you do want.

This third-side perspective might shock you if you're unable to conceive of a reality in which you can claim this kind of power for yourself. You must never forget fortune-telling is a confidence game at worst and self-transformative contemplation at best! Many fruitful consequences may emerge from the temporary application of self-deceit, so embrace your Satanic third-side and use fortune-telling to capture the hidden perspective of rational self-preservation, will-to-power, pleasure, and dignity.

Remember, too, that it's not enough to know that a third side exists. The knowledge of it may be enough to purge anxiety and at least temporarily make you feel better about yourself, but resigning yourself to the fantasy of what you could have is no better than the Christian who impotently prays for an imaginary friend to magically repair his or her life. Don't make the mistake of selectively disregarding anything that disagrees with your desired is-to-be. If you like what you see, then work to achieve it because it's worthy of your name and deserving of your possession. If you don't like what you see, then have a good laugh at your expense and resolve yourself to change your fate. If you take no action to create your life according or in opposition to fortune, then for better and for worse you deserve everything Lady Fortuna throws at you.