XII. The Hanged Man



A rock climber with medium skin tone takes a break on a steep cliff face to survey the surrounding lands. The person has brown hair tied in a ponytail, hairy arms and legs, and an amazed expression on their face. They hang from the cliff on a single rope tied around their waist. They wear a white tank top, purple pants, and blue shoes. In the background is a starry night sky, an ocean, mountains, a city, and lush greenery.

Key words

Upright: grace, patience, letting go, new perspective

Reversed: arrogance, stagnation, procrastination

Reflection questions

  • How can I find peace and acceptance in situations where I have little or no control over the outcome?
  • Where in life am I feeling blocked or stuck? What advice would I give someone else in my situation?
  • In which areas of my life do I exercise the most control? What would happen if I gave up that control?

The Hanged Man Upright

You may be going through a time of creative or spiritual growth. If you are feeling blocked it’s likely that you need a new perspective. Ask a friend or mentor to be a sounding board or second set of eyes. You will be pleasantly surprised if you open yourself up to other spiritual views and aesthetic tastes. Rather than trying to control everything around you, see what happens if you let go. Breaking your routine every so often will keep things interesting and prevent you from feeling stuck.

The Hanged Man Reversed

Your way of doing things is not the only answer— open yourself up to other people, experiences, and viewpoints. You may be avoiding an unpleasant task or difficult conversation, and a shift in perspective could be what you need to get started. You may be ignoring the full potential of the resources at your disposal. Remember that not everything has to be utilitarian: food can bring pleasure as well as sustenance. Small talk may lead you to learn something surprising about your conversation partner. Clothing can be a form of self-expression as well as a way to stay warm. Make sure to challenge your assumptions regularly and be open to others’ approaches to solving problems and moving through the world.