The Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot – Tarot de Marseille
I. Overview of the Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot
The Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot, the Major card XII, corresponding to the second level in the second decimal period and to the High Priestess in the first cycle. Like her, he pointed to the state of accumulation, imprisonment, and seclusion. He has hidden from the human world, the only link left is a rope that ties him up with a red horizontal pillar between two trees which he hanged in. We can see that starting with the Major card XI, all numbers are completing the process towards the original source of energy below the abyss of the subconscious. Hanged Man followed this attraction and headed to the abyss, and through his accumulated nature (no. 2), he expressed it with a complete postponement, he hung himself upside down, his hair was down to the deep roots of the matter.
If High Priestess is hatching, Hanged Man is being hatched: he has entered pregnancy to create a new life. Once again, we will see the symbol of the egg described in the Major card number II. If High Priestess is a mother, Hanged Man is a son. We can imagine that Hanged Man is a fetus inside card number II. He hung himself in a suspended way between the Sky and the Earth, waiting to be born. His foot posture is quite similar to the Emperor: one leg stretched out and the other crossed. But the Emperor crossed his legs in dynamism, with one leg pushed forward, ready to act. The Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot, on the other hand, he pulled one leg behind the other to keep himself more fixed. Even his hand, symbolizing his ability to function flexibly, was also crossing behind him. He did nothing nor made any choices.
II. History and Evolution of Le Pendu tarot Card
1. Origins of the Hanged Man Tarot Card
The origins of the Hanged Man tarot card are somewhat shrouded in mystery, as the precise history of the tarot is not well-documented. However, it is generally believed that the tarot originated in Italy in the 15th century as a card game, before later being adapted for divinatory purposes.
Some historians have speculated that the Hanged Man card may have originally been inspired by the figure of Odin, the Norse god of wisdom and magic, who was said to have hung from the World Tree for nine days in order to gain knowledge and insight. Others have suggested that the card may have been influenced by the Christian tradition of crucifixion, or by the practice of hanging criminals as a form of punishment.
Regardless of its precise origins, the symbolism of the Hanged Man tarot card has come to represent themes of sacrifice, surrender, and letting go. The figure depicted on the card is often shown hanging upside down from a tree or other object, with one leg crossed over the other in a position that suggests a deliberate choice to be in this position. The Hanged Man is often depicted as calm and serene, suggesting a willingness to accept his fate and a faith in the ultimate outcome of his sacrifice.
The origins of the Hanged Man tarot card remain somewhat mysterious, but its symbolism has come to hold great significance in the world of tarot and beyond. Whether viewed as a symbol of spiritual transformation, a reminder to surrender control, or something else entirely, the Hanged Man continues to captivate and inspire those who encounter it.
2. Changes in the Symbolism of the Hanged Man Tarot Card
The symbolism of the Hanged Man tarot card has evolved over time, reflecting changes in cultural attitudes and interpretations of its meaning. In early tarot decks, the Hanged Man was often depicted as a criminal, hanging upside down as a form of punishment. This interpretation emphasized the idea of sacrifice and suffering, with the Hanged Man being seen as a martyr figure who was willing to endure pain in order to achieve a higher purpose.
In later tarot decks, the emphasis shifted away from the idea of punishment and toward a more spiritual interpretation of the card. The Hanged Man came to be seen as a symbol of surrender, indicating a willingness to let go of control and trust in the universe to guide one’s path. The crossed legs of the Hanged Man also came to be interpreted as a sign of balance and harmony, suggesting that the act of surrendering oneself could lead to a greater sense of peace and equilibrium.
More recently, some modern interpretations of the Hanged Man tarot card have emphasized the idea of transformation and rebirth. In these interpretations, the Hanged Man is seen as undergoing a process of inner transformation, letting go of old patterns and beliefs in order to make way for new growth and change.
The development of the Hanged Man tarot card demonstrates the capacity of symbols to develop and adapt to change cultural attitudes and beliefs as well as a changing understanding of the function of sacrifice and submission in spiritual practice.
III. Keywords of the Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot
Sacrifice – Delay – No choice – Pregnancy – Fetus – Meditation – Gift from Self – Depth – Reversal – Waiting – Suspension – Rest.
On two side of the Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot, we see branches that have been cut and sacrificed. In the preparation for this physical and spiritual birth, a pause is essential. This is a stop caused by disease as well as a stop that is totally agreed to allow for a state of meditation. On the spiritual side, Hanged Man stopped the homogeneous comedy of the world with his spiritual theater; he dedicated himself to the concerns of the self as a sacrifice for his inner work. In this sense, his fall was a bounce.
We can also see, in the opposite direction of vision and perspective, the hanged state of his body: wisdom has been thrown down and reason has stopped controlling behavior while the mind is more receptive to the inner intellect, this can be seen through his dark blond hair. Our perspective of life has changed. We disconnect from the views of the world that inherited from childhood, with its illusionary army, to enter its unique core truth. Looking from this perspective when reading, the Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot will often bring us back to understanding the bond between the reader and his/her family genealogy.
The posture of this character, heading down, reminiscent of the image of the fetus in the uterus of the mother, and it can cause Tarot readers to ask questions to whom the cards are talking about their pregnancy or childbirth, or about any injury from pregnancy that this person has experienced in the past. Two trees with truncated branches can be interpreted as two “trees” or fathers and maternal lineages, whose habits of abuse or their neurological state has caused us to be suspended as a sacrifice in helplessness, concealing behind our backs – just like this hanged man with his hidden hands – the secrets of shame. This card sometimes shows sin and virtual crimes that symbolized by 12 bleeding wounds on the tree and punishment being implemented, or a certain sacrifice is forced to do so. The traditional story about money is falling out of Hanged Man’s pocket, and he is losing his wealth. The more symbolic way of reading is to sacrifice the “virtual wealth” of the ego.
The Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot can also take the image of Jesus, and thereby, shows the theme of the gift from a person himself. Then, the 12 branches will represent the 12 apostles, who are sometimes seen as the 12 the direction of the self around the Lord representing the duality of the universe. There are a lot of bisexual signs here: Hanged Man’s bag is in the shape of a crescent moon, but one is to get and the other one is to give away, one is active and the other one is passive. The rope tied and hung him up was a double rope: a rope with a tail bears the shape of a penis while the other one, on our right side, bears the shape of female genital organs. Moreover, at the column point of the rope with the Hanged Man’s heel, there is a triangle placed inside a circle indicating that he is connected to the soul, and that is a bisexual soul. And this alludes to him from head to toe, as we can see dark blond curls lying around a light yellow sun and a moon of the same color.
However, if it is understood that Tarot imbued with the influence of the three major religions, we will also see an allusion to Jewish tradition and 10 Sephirot of the Tree of Life in 10 buttons on the Hanged Man’s shirt. The first button, starting from the neck, has a black dot, which is the origin of creation. The next four buttons will alternate between a positive element and a comprehensible element. The sixth button, corresponding to Sephirah Tipheret, takes on the shape of a sun with eight sun rays, which is the perfection of the beauty that unites all other elements. Next is the alternation between a positive element and a comprehensible element, followed by the ninth button bearing the moon and the tenth is a square, the symbol of the Earth, which is engraved. Hanged Man’s meditation helps him to step up to the knowledge of the universe which exists within him.
- Figure 1: Branches around the character refer to sacrifice and the journey to find the essence;
- Figure 2: At the column point of the rope and the heel, the triangle represents the mind and the soul;
- Figure 3: There are a sun and a moon in his hair;
- Figure 4: Buttons on his shirt may represent Sephirot in the Jewish tradition.
IV. Interpreting Le Pendu Tarot Card: Traditional and Modern Symbolism
1. Traditional Symbolism of the Hanged Man Tarot Card
Postponing – Waiting – Immobility – It is not time to act – Hide something – Punish yourself – Fetus in the uterus – Secrecy – Reversal perspectives – See another point – No choice – Rest – Diseases – Pregnancy – Pregnancy status of the reader – Attachment to family genealogy – Prayer – Sacrifice – Gift from the self – Deep meditation – Do nothing – Internal forces gained from praying.
The traditional symbolism of the Hanged Man tarot card is deeply rooted in themes of sacrifice, surrender, and spiritual transformation. The card typically depicts a figure hanging upside down, often from a tree, with one leg crossed over the other. The image evokes the idea of suspension, as if the Hanged Man has chosen to put himself in this position in order to gain a different perspective on the world.
In traditional interpretations of the card, the Hanged Man is seen as a martyr figure, willingly sacrificing himself in order to achieve a higher purpose. This can be seen as a symbol of spiritual surrender, with the Hanged Man representing a willingness to let go of one’s own desires and attachments in order to align oneself with a higher power or purpose.
The crossed legs of the Hanged Man are often interpreted as a sign of balance and harmony, suggesting that the act of surrendering oneself can lead to a greater sense of peace and equilibrium. The card can also be seen as a symbol of initiation or rebirth, with the Hanged Man undergoing a process of inner transformation in order to achieve a higher level of spiritual awareness.
By willingly putting oneself in a position of vulnerability and relinquishing control, one can open oneself up to new insights and perspectives, and ultimately achieve a greater sense of harmony and peace.
2. Modern Interpretations of the Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot Card
Modern interpretations of the Hanged Man tarot card have evolved beyond the traditional symbolism of sacrifice and spiritual surrender, reflecting changing cultural attitudes and interpretations of the card’s meaning. One modern interpretation of the card emphasizes the idea of surrendering to the present moment and letting go of control in order to fully embrace the present. In this context, the Hanged Man can be seen as a symbol of mindfulness and meditation, encouraging the seeker to cultivate a sense of presence and awareness in their daily life.
Another modern interpretation of the card emphasizes the theme of personal transformation and growth. The Hanged Man can be seen as a symbol of rebirth and regeneration, with the act of surrendering oneself representing a willingness to let go of old patterns and beliefs in order to make way for new growth and change. In this context, the Hanged Man can be a powerful symbol for those seeking to overcome personal challenges or obstacles, encouraging them to have faith in their ability to transform and grow.
Modern interpretations of the Hanged Man tarot card emphasize the importance of letting go of control and embracing the unknown in order to fully engage with life and achieve personal growth. The card’s symbolism has evolved to reflect changing cultural attitudes and interpretations of spirituality, highlighting the adaptability and power of symbols to resonate with different generations and worldviews.
V. When the Hanged Man – Le Pendu Tarot speaks up
“I hang myself in that position because I want to. I was the one who cut the branches. I have freed my hands from the desire to catch, to possess, to hold. I did not leave the world, I just temporarily shunned it. Going with me, you will enter a state where willpower no longer exists, where words, emotions, relationships, longings, needs no longer bind you. To separate myself, I severed the whole connection between the person who joined me and the consciousness”.
“I have the ability to feel myself constantly falling into the bottom of my heart. I was looking for myself through the labyrinth of words. I am a reflector and a thinker. I am not my own feelings; I watched them from an invisible celestial sphere where only peacefulness reigned. From an infinite distance from the river of longing, I only knew indifference. I am not my own body but just a resident in it. To reach myself, I am a hunter willing to sacrifice my prey. I find flaming actions inside eternal immobility”.
“I overcome pain to discover the power of sacrifice. Step by step, I erase everything in me that is called “self”. I kept coming back to myself like returning to a charming forest. I do not own anything, I do not hold anything, I do not know anything, I do not want anything, I cannot do anything”.
“However, the whole universe went through me, coming to fill me with its swirling winds before leaving me again. I am the endless sky, so the clouds fly over. So, what is left in me? A gaze which is not directed at anything, aware of itself, turning it into the ultimate basic reality. Then, I will explode into pure light. The “self” becomes the pole for a dance, the holy water for the thirsty people to drink”.
“It was at this moment that I was fresh air to purify the polluted atmosphere. At this very moment, my restricted body will become the power of the deluge for eternal life”.
“I am simply the beat of the heart to help bring beauty to the boundaries of creation. I became a gentle peace in all the relentless pain, gratitude, and the door that led the victims to happiness, the slope where we slipped to the highest points, is the light of life circulating in the darkness of blood”.
VI. Le Pendu in a Tarot Reading: Context and Meaning
1. The Hanged Man in Relation to Other Tarot Cards
When interpreting the Hanged Man tarot card in a reading, it is important to consider the other cards present in the spread and the relationships between them. The position of the Hanged Man in the spread can also offer insights into its meaning and significance.
One common placement for the Hanged Man in a tarot spread is as the central card of a three-card reading, with one card representing the past, one representing the present, and one representing the future. In this context, the Hanged Man can represent a period of transition or suspension, with the seeker being called to surrender and let go in order to move forward into the future.
When the Hanged Man appears in a spread with other Major Arcana cards, it can signal a major turning point or transformation in the seeker’s life, with the card’s themes of surrender and sacrifice being particularly relevant. In contrast, when the Hanged Man appears in a spread with predominantly Minor Arcana cards, it can suggest a more everyday struggle or challenge that the seeker is facing, with the card offering guidance on how to approach the situation with a sense of surrender and acceptance.
2. Interpreting the Meaning of the Hanged Man in a Tarot Reading
Interpreting the meaning of the Hanged Man in a tarot reading requires a deep understanding of the card’s symbolism and its relevance to the seeker’s question or situation. The Hanged Man is often seen as a card of suspension, sacrifice, and surrender, and its appearance in a spread can indicate a need for the seeker to let go of control and trust in the natural flow of things.
One key aspect of interpreting the Hanged Man in a tarot reading is to understand the difference between surrender and passivity. While surrender involves a conscious choice to let go of control and allow things to unfold naturally, passivity involves a sense of giving up or resignation. When the Hanged Man appears in a reading, it is important to consider whether the seeker is being called to surrender to the situation at hand, or whether they are at risk of slipping into a state of passivity.
Another important aspect of interpreting the Hanged Man in a tarot reading is to consider the seeker’s own relationship to surrender and sacrifice. Does the seeker have a tendency to hold tightly onto control, or are they comfortable with letting go and trusting in the universe? By understanding the seeker’s own tendencies and patterns, a tarot reader can offer guidance and support to help them navigate the situation at hand.
Ultimately, the meaning of the Hanged Man in a tarot reading will depend on the individual situation and the other cards present in the spread. However, by paying close attention to the symbolism of the card and the seeker’s own tendencies, a tarot reader can offer deep insights and guidance to help the seeker navigate their path with grace and wisdom.
VII. Meditation with the Le Pendu tarot Card: Surrender and Reflection
Meditating with the Hanged Man tarot card can be a powerful tool for surrender, reflection, and inner growth. As one of the most enigmatic cards in the tarot deck, the Hanged Man invites us to let go of control and trust in the flow of life. Through meditation, we can deepen our understanding of this powerful archetype and connect more fully with its transformative energy.
To begin a meditation with the Hanged Man, find a quiet and comfortable space where you can sit or lie down. Close your eyes and take several deep breaths, allowing your body and mind to relax and release tension. When you feel calm and centered, visualize the image of the Hanged Man in your mind’s eye. See the figure suspended upside down from the tree, his hands bound behind his back and his foot crossed over the other. Allow the image to come into focus, noticing the details of the card and the feelings that arise within you.
As you meditate on the Hanged Man, consider what it means to surrender and let go of control. Reflect on areas of your life where you may be holding on too tightly or trying to force outcomes. Notice any resistance or discomfort that arises within you as you contemplate the idea of surrendering to the flow of life. Remember that surrender is not about giving up or resigning yourself to a situation, but rather about letting go of attachment and trusting in the unfolding of things.
As you deepen your meditation with the Hanged Man, consider what it means to sacrifice and release. Reflect on areas of your life where you may need to let go of something in order to move forward. Notice any fears or doubts that arise within you as you contemplate the idea of sacrifice. Remember that sacrifice is not about losing something valuable, but rather about releasing something that no longer serves you in order to make space for something better.
Throughout your meditation with the Hanged Man, allow yourself to sink deeper into the feeling of surrender and release. Notice any insights or messages that come to you as you connect with this powerful archetype. When you feel complete with your meditation, take a few deep breaths and open your eyes, allowing yourself to return fully to the present moment.
By meditating with the Hanged Man tarot card, we can deepen our understanding of surrender, sacrifice, and letting go. Through this process of reflection and connection, we can release old patterns and beliefs that no longer serve us and open ourselves to new possibilities and opportunities for growth.
More The Hanged Man Cards from Famous Tarot Decks
1. The Hanged Man Rider Waite Tarot Deck
The Hanged Man Rider Waite Tarot card is one of the most mysterious cards in the deck, simple yet complicated, and inconsistent in many ways. As you can see, the character in this card turns upside down, symbolizing paradoxical actions (but true ones) in life.
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2. The Mirror Wildwood Tarot Deck
The Mirror Wildwood Tarot is located at the autumn equinox, September 21, at the gate that leads to the sunrise. The element of the card is Water. The dark sea at midnight takes the soul on a journey to the mysterious island of healing.
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3. The Hanged Man Linestrider Tarot Deck
The Hanged Man Linestrider is a mysterious card that often appears at transitions when you pause to assess a situation or find a new way of seeing and approaching life.
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