Interpreting the Tower Tarot Card
An introduction to the meaning of the Tower tarot card
The Tower tarot card represents sudden change, a complete shift in thought-processes and values, shaking the pillars of perceived identity, and burning away all falsities which cling to the human character like a spiritual plague. The Tower exists as the material and psychological dependencies we construct and hide within in an attempt to form some sort of a living foundation, based entirely on old knowledge and social defences, strong, safe, and carefully built, but also restrictive and stagnant when held in residence for too long. In order to grow spiritually and emotionally the Tower must be destroyed, re-built with fresh, new ideas about the world around us, and upheld with a further experienced and strengthened moral fibre.
The image of the Tower tarot card is powerful and for some, even frightening, depicting a solid tower being struck by lightning, and fire crawling out from the small windows at its top. The lightning represents the intense and unexpected change we experience when truth seems to strike out at us, violently, appearing as an explosion of light which is so bright as to make it impossible to miss.
We have been held up in the Tower fearing change and the possibility of self-doubt, but the lightning, the truth which has danced around us always, but without notice, finally reaches out in a dramatic show of light and power, forcing us out from the confines of the ego, back into a state of self-discovery. Not only has the lightning exposed all the lies and false notions of the self, but it has actually burned them up completely, revealing absolute truth while also releasing the soul. The Tower tarot card symbolizes the need to and the inevitability of change, for the safe nature of complacency must be sacrificed if growth and progress is to take place.
The meaning of the Tower 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 Tower card meaning is similar to the wisdom of Proverbs 16:18, warning that "Pride goeth before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall."
The Tower tarot card - upright meaning:
When the Tower card lands in the upright position it forewarns of a sudden crisis, critical event or unseen danger. A destructive or catastrophic influence is at play here. See surrounding cards for clarification.
The Tower tarot card - reversed meaning:
When the Tower card is in the upside-down/reversed position it predicts the sudden awareness of an unpleasant fact. A shocking truth could be revealed or there may be a serious falling out with someone near and dear.
Keywords/phrases associated with the Tower tarot card:
Upright - unexpected events, crisis, destruction, danger
Reversed - rude awakening, unpleasant surprise, discord, strife, insight, revelation
Return from the Tower tarot card back to Reading Tarot Cards - The Major Arcana
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