Interpreting the Death Tarot Card

An introduction to the meaning of the Death tarot card

Death Tarot Card The Death tarot card, much like the Hanged Man tarot card, elicits an initial response of fear and impending doom, for popular culture has perpetuated the negative qualities of the Death tarot card beyond what is truly implied. Although physical death can be inferred from the Death tarot card, it is in fact a rare and highly circumstantial interpretation, usually arising only when there is an obvious and direct correlation drawn during the discussion to individuals in poor health or of considerably old age; the surrounding cards must also support this interpretation.

The Death tarot card most often represents change, transformation, and the end of a particular cycle of which one has become increasingly familiar with. Every end can be said to result in a new beginning, for all that exists in the universe is never destroyed, but is simply altered in form and cast in a different direction then where it held residence before. We continually undergo physical and spiritual transformation throughout our lifetimes, and the Death tarot card symbolizes the collective force of these changes, all turning points which allow us to re-shape our current model of the world, of ourselves, and of each other. To exist in a constant state of complacency, fixed in thought and behaviour, closed off and fearful of change, is to ignore the opportunity to grow and flourish under new conditions, or to remain in the same environment but with a different perspective, approach, or understanding of our experience within existence.

The Death tarot card is a strong indicator of a dramatic change about to take place, whether this is a physical or spiritual relocation, or even the act of giving up old habits, something new and meaningful is in the works.

It's meaning in a Tarot Card Spread

The meaning of the Death tarot card is influenced by the position of the card as it is drawn from the deck, the position it occupies in the card layout, and by the cards that are positioned before and after it.

The Death tarot card - upright meaning:
When the Death card lands in the upright position it foretells an end to a situation followed by a significant, and usually positive, life change.

The Death tarot card - reversed meaning:
When the Death card is in the upside-down/reversed position it usually reveals an inability to let go and move forward. There may be overwhelming grief or a refusal to accept change. On the other hand it may reveal a fear of death itself.

Keywords/phrases associated with the Death tarot card:

Upright - endings, change, moving forward, renewal, transformation

Reversed - blockage, grief, stagnation, decay, fear

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Meaning in a Tarot Spread

Meaning Upright

Meaning Reversed