Tarot Cards Meanings - Major Arcana - The Hanged Man - meaning in detail

The Hanged Man (Le Pendu) - tarot card meaning in detail

The Hanged Man The Spirit of the Mighty Waters

Card Number: 12
Key Number: 23
Rulership: Water
Hebrew Letter: Mem
Translation: Water
Numerical Value: 3
Astrological Associations: Pisces

Full Meaning

The Hanged Man at first may appear a card of discomfort or even death as we observe a man suspended upside down. Indeed the man hanging upside down in the card is very much alive and he Is in a contemplative mood. He is actually looking for enlightenment and as he does he is suspended in time as he follows his quest for knowledge and spiritual enlightenment. When the Hanged Man turns up in a spread it symbolizes a need to take calculated inaction to solve any problems or challenges facing you at the moment.

This card warns that now is not the time to swim against the tide, but with it, even though being pushed down stream may take you temporarily away from your destination. Do not worry you will arrive at the place where you want to be. You just need to make tiny adjustments that will set you free from this temporary period of unrest and set you back on the right path so that you can move forward with confidence.

Traditional Symbolism

The gallows from which he is suspended forms a Tau cross, while the figure--from the position of the legs--forms a fylfot cross. There is a nimbus about the head of the seeming martyr. It should be noted (1) that the tree of sacrifice is living wood, with leaves thereon; (2) that the face expresses deep entrancement, not suffering; (3) that the figure, as a whole, suggests life in suspension, but life and not death. It is a card of profound significance, but all the significance is veiled. One of his editors suggests that Éliphas Lévi did not know the meaning, which is unquestionable nor did the editor himself. It has been called falsely a card of martyrdom, a card a of prudence, a card of the Great Work, a card of duty; but we may exhaust all published interpretations and find only vanity.

I will say very simply on my own part that it expresses the relation, in one of its aspects, between the Divine and the Universe. He who can understand that the story of his higher nature is imbedded in this symbolism will receive intimations concerning a great awakening that is possible, and will know that after the sacred Mystery of Death there is a glorious Mystery of Resurrection.

The Hanged Man summary.

The Hanged Man Card illustration.

The Major Arcana suit.