Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
View your shopping cart Shopping Cart | My Account | Help | Become a Fan on Facebook Become a Fan | Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us | Watch Us on YouTube Watch Us | Subscribe to our RSS Feeds Subscribe
Browse ProductsAuthorsArticlesBlogsEncyclopediaNewslettersAffiliate ProgramContact UsBooksellers
Advanced Search
Article Topics
List of Articles
RSS Data Feeds
Mission Statement
Use of Our Articles
Writers' Guidelines

Email Exclusives
Sign up to receive special offers and promotions from Llewellyn.

Get the Latest Issue of New Worlds

November/December Gift Guide 2015 Issue

New Worlds Catalog

Get the FREE app for your tablet and mobile device. Now available in the iTunes Store†and the Google Play Store

Also available as a PDF File.

Click for more information about New Worlds or to receive issues via mail.

The Llewellyn Journal
Print this Article Print this Article

The World

This article was written on July 30, 2009 posted under Tarot

Le Monde (The World). Corresponding to the number Twenty-One, also to the Hebrew letter Tav.

[Note: Waiteís deck places The Fool here (though this card is still numbered Twenty-one, and The Fool is still numbered Zero). In terms of correspondence to the Hebrew alphabet, inserting The Fool here is correct; Tav is the last letter of the alphabet, and Shin (the letter corresponding to The Fool) second to the last. However, most decks do not interrupt the progress of the Arcana; they place The Fool at either the beginning or the end.]

Perfection, attainment. Your goals have been reached, your development or learning (in this area) is completed.

In almost all decks, the central figure is a young, nude woman, draped modestly with a long flowing scarf. She is surrounded by a wreath, made of either leaves, or leaves and flowers. In some decks, she is holding wands or staffs in both hands. The position of her hands varies; but a few decks show her gesturing in the same manner as The Magician: one hand upward, the other pointing down.

At the four corners of the card there are four different figures: upper left, a winged human or angel; upper right a hawk or eagle; lower left a bull; lower right a lion. Some decks show only the faces of these four figures; others show enough of the figures so that you can see that all four have wings. Note that the positioning of these four figures is similar to those sometimes found in Arcanum Ten (The Wheel of Fortune).

This is the last numbered card of the Major Arcana. In this representation, you are the adept you have tried to become throughout your journey. Your transmutation (shown in the previous card, Judgment) is complete, and you have achieved the perfect synthesis of body (material), mind (intelligence), soul (self-awareness), and spirit (subconscious).

The World symbolizes complete mastery and understanding of your own inner nature and of the forces surrounding you. You know what is good and right in the universe and understand its intended order. And you can trust your judgment regarding what actions to take in the circumstances currently surrounding you. You have attained the status of a full adept.

This card is the reverse of the Falling Tower. In Arcanum Sixteen, destruction resulted from misuse of power; the failed adept assumed an authority that he or she did not in fact have, and reached for a goal to which he or she had no right.

But here, you attain an even greater goal than anything you could have wished for, or even imagined, at that earlier level.

There is no possibility of destruction, because it is no longer possible for you to make wrong choices. Everything you do is right. And you have a right to everything you have. You know who and what you are; you know why you are; and you know the reason for existence. And all of these answers serve to prove your own individual worth. This is the reward for your efforts.

In the Reading
Upright (or Positive): Completion, perfection, synthesis, ultimate change. Honesty and truth; assured success, harmony, attainment. Graduation; completion of a cycle. Recognition, reward, acclaim.

Reversed (or Negative): Negation, sacrifice of love or goals. Flight. Stagnation, inertia. Payback for evil deeds.

You have learned the lessons required for this incarnation (or situation, if the question involves mundane things). You are what you need to be; you know all you need to know; you have accomplished all you need to accomplish. You can now go on to other things, knowing that this task has been completed to perfection.

If this card represents the querent, you have achieved the ultimate success in your endeavor, and without any of the drawbacks that lesser successes so often bring. Everything you do, everything that happens, will only serve to prove your worth in this area.

But there is one caution. At this level of attainment, there is no place or need for further development in this area. But someone who has accomplished what you have accomplished cannot just sit back and do nothing with it. If you sit on your laurels, rather than finding another area to grow in, the result will be stagnation. As above, the job is done; itís time to move on.

From Tarot for Beginners, by P. Scott Hollander


Easy Tarot
Over 200,000 sold!
Easy Tarot
Learn to Read the Cards Once and For All!
Josephine Ellershaw, Ciro Marchetti
$19.95 US,  $21.95 CAN | Add to Cart
Tarot for Beginners
Tarot for Beginners
A Practical Guide to Reading the Cards
Barbara Moore
$15.95 US,  $18.50 CAN | Add to Cart

Please note that the use of Llewellyn Journal articles
is subject to certain Terms and Conditions

A few years ago, my youngest son was arguing with his friend about the age of Honey, our wild golden retriever. His friend insisted that Honey was five, because the dog had been alive that many years. Said Gabe, "Sometimes Honey is really one, like when he chews our shoes; sometimes he's 89, like when he pretends he's too old to listen when you... read this article
How to Successfully Navigate a Mercury Retrograde
Psychic Vision: 3 Easy Ways
An Accessible Guide to the Thoth Tarot
How Strengthening My Spirituality Helped Me With My Cancer Diagnosis
5 Ways to Embrace Your Home as an Archetype of the Divine Feminine

Most recent posts:
A Fresh View of Judgement
In my opinion, the Judgement card needs a rename as much as the Hierophant. It is such an important card and so many people seem to misunderstand it....

Wishing On a Falling Star: My Favorite Chakra
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Cyndi Dale, author of a number of books, including The Complete Book of Chakra Healing and the new...

Thank you, Carl
Letís start by saying I canít believe Iím writing another remembrance on this blog. Iíve lost too many authors in the 10 years Iíve worked for...

Love in the Stars Love in the Stars
Find Your Perfect Match With Astrology

By: Brad Kronen
Price: $21.99 US,  $25.50 CAN
Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Datebook Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Datebook
By: Llewellyn
Price: $11.99 US,  $14.99 CAN
$9.59 US,  $11.99 CAN On Sale!
Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Calendar Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Calendar
By: Llewellyn
Price: $13.99 US,  $16.99 CAN
$11.19 US,  $13.59 CAN On Sale!
Wicca Wicca
A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner

By: Scott Cunningham
Price: $14.95 US,  $16.95 CAN
Llewellyn's 2016 Astrological Calendar Llewellyn's 2016 Astrological Calendar
83rd Edition of the World's Best Known, Most Trusted Astrology Calendar

By: Llewellyn
Price: $14.99 US,  $17.99 CAN
$11.99 US,  $14.39 CAN On Sale!