Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Hanged Man - A Short Interpretation

My morning meditation about Black Goo got me interested in the Hanged Man Tarot card, and wondering what it might signify. Here's the interpretation I found:

Serenely dangling upside-down, the Hanged Man has let go of worldly attachments. He has sacrificed a desire for control over his circumstances in order to gain an understanding of, and communion with, creative energies far greater than his individual self. In letting go, the hero gains a profound perspective accessible only to someone free from everyday conceptual, dualistic reality.

The Hanged Man is often associated with Odin, the primary god of the Norse Pantheon. Odin hung upside down from the world-tree, Yggdrasil, for nine days to attain wisdom and thereby retrieved The Runes from the Well of Wyrd, which the Norse cosmology regarded as the source and end of all Mystery and all knowledge. The moment he glimpsed the runes, he died, but the knowledge of them was so powerful that he immediately returned to life.

This interpretation highlights the necessity of undertaking acts of personal sacrifice in order to achieve one's own higher spiritual good. In short: The Hanged Man is every hero committed enough to the adventure to die for it.

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