The Hanged Man Tarot Card Meaning – Upright and Reversed

The next card in our Major Arcana tarot card meaning series is The Hanged Man. Keep reading to learn what it means when The Hanged Man appears in your tarot spread.

XII – The Hanged Man

Ruler: Neptune

In the Hanged Man we see a man hanging by his foot from a tree. The man does not appear to be suffering but is in a position where he cannot move freely. This is a card of limitations which seem beyond our immediate control, but like the Hanged Man, we are forced to accept this position. There is a temporary suspension of progress which is represented by the Hanged Man’s suspension from a tree.

XII - The Hanged Man - Major Arcana

The Hanged Man Tarot Card Meaning

The Hanged Man Upright

The Hanged man is a card of self sacrifice. It can take the form of either material or emotional self sacrifice. This person may be in a state of limbo or experiencing a pause in life until someone or something is given up for greater gain.

This card represents a trial of passage which is where the self sacrifice comes in. This card also has spiritual overtones in relation to one and self sacrificing themselves.

The Hanged Man is also a card of adapting to changing circumstances. In that regard, it can mean transition, flexibility, rebirth, deliverance and release. It indicates there is devotion to a worthy cause.

The Hanged Man can also imply flexibility of the mind and a willingness to make or adapt to changes.  It indicates that there is a sacrifice being made now in order to reap benefits later.

This card signals that there is a period of waiting for this person. When we see this card in a spread it indicates a sacrifice of one thing in order to gain something else. It is also a card of transformation. The Hanged Man may indicate illness as well as stress and anxiety. This card indicates this is a time for patience and not to worry. 

The Hanged Man Reversed

When we see the Hanged Man in reverse in a spread it is suggesting the person is selfish or is using emotional blackmail by playing the martyr. It also indicates there is a weakness with this person. Their weaknesses can lead them in the wrong direction both materially and emotionally resulting in missed opportunities otherwise.

There is a lack of commitment to something, generally because the person is preoccupied with material and selfish needs. Despite drawbacks they still prefer the status quo. It can indicate oppression depending on where it is in the spread as well as apathetic pursuit of goals.

This person has the mentality “Better the Devil You Know.” There is a failure to act with an inability to move forward or progress. There is a stagnancy with this person.

Click here to learn the meanings of all the cards in the Major Arcana.

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About Ash

I'm a lifelong spiritual seeker who has spent over 25 years studying numerology, spirituality, the Law of Attraction and the secrets of the universe. One of my greatest passions is helping people awaken their spirit, connect to their higher self and learn how to co-create with the universe. I also love spending time in nature, swimming in the ocean, reading and being with my family.

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