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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: Hanged Man


Hanged Man: One of the trumps of the Major Arcana of the tarot. Numbered XII. In the system of Eliphas Levi, it corresponds to the Hebrew letter Lamed. In the system of the Golden Dawn, The Hanged Man corresponds to the Hebrew letter Mem and the element of Water.

Hanged Man:

Sometimes called the Drowned Man, it is the 12th Major Arcanum of the Tarot.

Image: Man hanging by one foot with the other crossed behind

Hebrew letter: Mem

Divinatory meaning: suspension, delay, reversal, personal sacrifice

Path on the Tree of Life: The 23rd path connecting Hod to Geburah.

Qabalistic Description. The 12th Key, the 23rd Path. The Spirit of the Mighty Waters. This Path runs between Hod and Geburah, the execution of judgment. It is also the self-sacrifice that leads to resurrection, the shamanic trance that leads to renewal, death that leads to rebirth. Mem means water, life consciousness.

Card Description.  An elusive and profoundly significant symbol. It is sacrifice—the submergence of the higher in the lower in order to sublimate the lower. It is the descent of the Spirit into Matter, the incarnation of God in man, the submission to the bonds of matter that the material may be transcended and transmuted. The colors are deep blue, white and black intermingled but not merged, olive, green and greenish fawn.

Interpretation.  Enforced sacrifice. Punishment, Loss. Fatal and not voluntary. Suffering generally.

Psychological Value. This Arcanum can be used when you seek Divine Guidance and inspiration for some aspect of your life. It can sustain you in your efforts, especially during periods when you feel abandoned and lonely. It gives you a feeling of balance, and opens you up to higher aspirations, by increasing your receptivity to the Divine. Artemis helps you to develop seriousness and purposefulness, as well as increased inner joy. Artemis helps you to understand philosophical and religious issues. (According to the Divine Arcana of the Aurum Solis—Divinity: Artemis;  Greek Letter: Tau.)

source: Llewellyn's Complete Book of Psychic Empowerment, by Carl Llewellyn Weschcke and Joe H. Slate (Llewellyn Publications) - Carl Llewellyn Weschcke

Also See: Le Pendu


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