The Sage is the first of the final pairing of the Self Archetypes; the archetypes of the Return. We can think of the Sage as the wise owl or the professor. It is the part of us that wants to understand what is going on; that wants to make sense of the world and needs learning and knowledge to feel that life is worthwhile. The Sage is on a quest for truth. Whereas the seeker is look to experience more, the sage is looking to learn / understand more. We can see the Sage at play with endless purchases of books, courses, attending seminars, as the next piece of learning may hold the "key," the answer. The sage is also very apparent in academia where knowledge and learning is of top value.
The gifts of the Sage are: wisdom; non-attachment, knowledge and healthy scepticism.
The goal of the Sage is: to find the truth.
The fear of the Sage is: deception.
The task of the Sage is: the attainment of enlightenment.
As with all the archetypes the we can embody the stage at various levels. At the lowest or shadow level, the sage can be critical, judgemental and pompous...(I.e. I am right, you are wrong and intellectual snobbery).
The sage on an early level is on a quest for truth and objectivity but as he or she evolves they accept the truth can be subjective and has an awareness of the complexity and multiplicity of truth. At the highest level of evolution the sage attains the highest truth - i.e. wisdom.
If we compare to the magician; the magician is living in a metaphysical universe and believes in perception is projection but the sage needs proof and has an relentless search for that objective truth exists. The sage is the person who will be asking - why? How do you know? Show me the evidence? or when presented with a new idea, will want to learn about it, understand it and study it, rather than risk experiencing it to see if it is true!
We can see the sage in the life long academic, someones always studying, learning, analysing but perhaps not being apply to apply the knowledge for practical use. The sage could KNOW lots......and be the oracle to ask.....but not actually have achieved anything tangible - not have any results to show for all of their learning.
Next we meet the Jester and the Jester is the archetype that helps the Sage to fully develop.