The Hanged Man

The Meaning


Suspension, things being hidden, waiting for something to happen. Mysticism and artistic inspiration.


Going Deeper

The Hanged Man is one of those cards that can throw a spanner into a positive reading. Whilst many connect this card to the spiritual, the reality is - it's no more spiritual than you make it. This card is far more likely to appear if you have an ongoing situation that requires stupid levels of passivity. In The Zodiac Tarot, the image of The Hanged Man is one of people in the cinema watching a film which I think is very descriptive. Many people under the influence of The Hanged Man are just watching life pass them by. Often, there will be a lover that is somehow absent, they may be waiting for their return or just wanting more of a relationship with someone who is unavailable or unreachable. In other situations, the person may be spiritual but hidden under a cloud of delusion because whilst The Hanged Man has an association with the invisible realms, it describes the place of the "yet to be born" and doesn't show how evolved we are. We can see the card representing drug users and alcoholics as often as someone on the path of spiritual enlightenment. This card indicates that nothing is at it seems, and it's highly likely that somebody somewhere is simply putting on a performance, i.e. just playing a part rather than actively participating [this needs to be borne in mind if the situation is about a relationship]. When The Hanged Man appears, something is being gestated, and it could be an idea, a book, a building or anything else for that matter, but there is no guarantee of manifestation into reality. Timing points to a few months away or maybe the end of winter. This card stresses that some things can't be forced, and you have to allow it to become fully functional before bringing it out into the light of day. Elusive, boundaryless and impossible to pinpoint sums this card up quite well. If The Hanged Man appears in response as to whether a relationship will come back together, my answer is that it's highly unlikely or no, not in this lifetime, unless you want to wait an inordinate amount of time.


Astro Insight

Neptune. Because Neptune has such a long transit through the signs, you could be looking at a long-term situation. Check transits to natal Neptune. 


Examples With Other Cards

With the High Priestess and The Moon, it almost certainly indicates a life of service to the Great Mystery. With The Empress: a future pregnancy. If many wand cards are present, a high amount of spiritual energy is around. Cups: The six is an old situation coming back into your life..there may be different players involved, but the game is the same as before. The Seven of Cups is delusion and distraction, nothing is likely to manifest. With the Two of Swords, a need to take the blindfold off and face things head on.


To Help Yourself or Give Advice To Clients

Urgh, I find this card irritating. There can be so much hope flying around, but really? There's just no need for martyrdom. It doesn't get you anywhere, ever.


Common Associations



The element water. The colour sea green. The psychic energy of clairvoyance and oneiromancy. The stones sugilite but also amazonite.