The Hanged Man is suspended upside down from living wood in the form of a t-cross. The position of his body forms an inverted triangle, which we see right-side up on Key 21, The World. His tied foot reminds us that we are earth-bound and have not yet attained the freedom found in Key 21. Once again, Tarot urges us to seek balance in our lives.
The numerology of The Hanged Man is significant, in that Key 12 resonates to 3, which, of course, are the numbers in the sides of a triangle. Again, we see the balance of mind-body-spirit, maiden-mother-crone, son-father-holy ghost. Twelve also is significant in terms of the houses of the Zodiac, the tribes of Israel, the steps to recovery….. and many, many more!
The symbol of Key 12, the cross over the triangle, is the alchemist’s code for transmutation of base metal into gold. Here the symbol speaks to us of the process through which we must go in order to transform our personality and our spiritual being.
The Hanged Man tells us that, if we are to become The World, we must face the challenges before us, honor our path, and find balance in our lives.