The Magician is a card of personal power. He speaks of those who are determined, resourceful, and relentless in the pursuit of their goals - for better or worse.
The magician is typically shown standing at an altar. All four Tarot symbols (wands, cups, swords, and pentacles) are on the altar before him. One hand, with a wand usually points to the sky and the other to the ground.
This card is highly symbolic in so many ways. The elements on the altar represent having all you need before you. The Tarot symbols are represented by the elements: fire, air, earth and water. It speaks to the sum of the parts, all things being present and available.
The hands pointing to both the sky and ground represent the power of manifesting. The magicians goals/dreams (spirit) and the practical work of making those things come to fruition (the earth and elements).
Magician people are masters of manifesting what they want. This can have both positive and negative connotations depending on the situation. On one hand, it represents someone who is determined, empowered, and resourceful. They come up with all sorts of ideas and schemes to achieve their ends and they will keep trying until they find what works.
The downside is this is someone who will stop at nothing to reach their goal (think hard sales or manipulation for example). When they fixate on what they want, they become unmovable and relentless. Magician people can sometimes appear unscrupulous due to the fact that they are so determined. Often they disregard the opinions or feelings of those around them because of their laser focus.
When you get a magician it can tell you that you need to be more determined and to not let temporary setbacks undermine you. There can be a lesson there to be more innovative or resourceful, to have more faith in your ability to manifest what you want. Perhaps you haven't exhausted all your options yet or need a new approach.
The Magician, when reversed or in a challenge position, can tell you that you may need to really reassess your goal. Have you been so fixated on one thing you can't see all the options? Are you perhaps pursuing a goal that isn't going to meet your expectations ultimately? Time to be honest when this card appears.