The Hanged Man (XII) Tarot Card

The Hanged Man (XII) Tarot Card
Tarot Card Meanings: Tarot Reading and Understanding The Hanged Man Tarot Card

If there is one card in the deck that represented the ultimate act of faith, it would be the Hanged Man. In a Tarot reading, The Hanged Man signifies the awakening of a new consciousness. In this stage of the journey, The Hanged Man accepts the ultimate spiritual law that he is not just a singular being. He is part of the greater whole. He must tap into the collective unconscious and learn to let go of his self. This is a process that leads to enlightenment.

The Hanged Man’s correlating number is 12. According to numerology, this has the same significance as the number 3. In this case, three represents the interaction of unity with duality. With the partnerships of the number two, comes a new birth. This birth creates a new, third dimension. One that is associated with the elements of completion and growth.

In a Tarot reading, The Hanged Man tarot card meanings usually inform us that we can not go back to earlier states of consciousness, such as those from youth or early adulthood. At the same time, we can not yield to our darker shadow selves, the impulsive drives of our unconscious. Our goal is to free ourselves from both the desire for the safety of our past and from the demands of our unconscious, a difficult duality we all face. Once again, we must strike a balance between the two. However, The Hanged Man does not require an action. It requires the relinquishment of a need to control our own universe. Instead, we now hand our lives over to something greater than ourselves. In order to do this, we must be willing to let go of all the things we have learned. We no longer can depend on our intellect alone. This is an act of faith.

In many ways, The Hanged Man represents the existential dilemma. Are we alone or are we part of something greater? This is the trial of this phase of development. The Hanged Man’s Tarot card meanings typically reflect the need to abandon our practical ideas for the universal wisdom that is within each of us. Our self-seeking quests for what we desire are of no significance. We must believe in a higher self that can transcend mundane awareness and tangible, immediate gratifications. When the Hanged Man appears upright in a Tarot spread, there is a strong suggestion that fulfillment and happiness can come from aligning oneself to the laws of the universe. This requires courage, strength, and most importantly, faith. For those of us who wrestle with our existential doubts and make it to the other side, there is great serenity and peace that awaits us.

The negative aspect to The Hanged Man is the dreamer lost in his own dream. This is the individual who thinks only of himself and cannot see the value and beauty of the connectedness we all share. He chooses to live in a fantasy rather than in a world shared by all.

Upright Hanged Man Tarot Card Meanings In A Tarot Reading

When The Hanged Man appears upright in your Tarot spread, it may be likely that you need to take a moment to pause. You may have to re-examine your priorities and establish if they conform to the spiritual principals you choose to live by. Sometimes, The Hanged Man indicates that a lesson needs to be learned. You may feel tested by outside influences. In a Tarot reading, The Hanged Man can suggest a transitional period. Perhaps you feel suspended between old and new beliefs. You may be forced to  sacrifice something you feel attached to. You may need to look beyond your self interests and perceptions. The Hanged Man also informs you that you are quite capable of selfless endeavors. Perhaps, you can explore some projects that you can dedicate some free time to, which will serve others besides yourself.

The Hanged Man urges us to let go and relinquish our perception of control. Trust your higher self. You may need to reconnect to the spiritual elements of your life in order to draw wisdom from your higher consciousness. In a relationship reading, The Hanged Man can indicate that you may give up a selfish ambition out of love for another person. It can also indicate that a relationship will dissolve due to the awareness that it is damaging and will most likely not meet your needs.

  • Selflessness
  • A new perspective
  • Feeling suspended
  • Sacrifice
  • Surrender

Reversed Hanged Man Tarot Card Meanings In A Tarot Reading

In a reversed position, The Hanged Man warns that you are not being true to yourself. Perhaps you are sacrificing too much of yourself in order to keep the people closest to you happy. Are you denying yourself the right to meet your own needs? In contrast, The Hanged Man reversed reflects an unwillingness to surrender for the higher good. Selfishness and dissatisfaction have become a central theme to your perceptions and motivations. You may be lingering in the past or you are too consumed with controlling the outcomes of your decisions.

On a more positive note, The Hanged Man reversed can indicate new movement that can transform in your life. In money readings, the Hanged Man reversed advises you that a financial investment could turn out to be disadvantageous. This is not a time to make financial risks.

  • Feelings of Frustration
  • Delays
  • Materialism
  • Not being true to yourself

For more information about The Hanged Man tarot card meanings in relationship readings, visit our Love Tarot section. Also, you can learn more about the Hanged Man and the sign of Scorpio in the Tarot Astrology section.

© 2010 All Rights Reserved. Images of individual tarot cards are from the Aquatic Tarot Deck created by Andreas Schröter and are used for example purposes only with his permission.


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