The Hermit Tarot Card Meaning - Upright, Reversed & More

The hermit upright

The Hermit At A Glance

Keywords: Independence, Lone Ranger, own journey, off the beaten track, sacred solitude, loneliness, pushing others away
Seasons: Winter
Zodiac/Planet: Virgo

The Hermit Card Description

The Hermit is the tenth card within the major arcana of tarot and is often numbered as 9. In the original RWS (Rider Waite Smith) system which most modern day tarot cards are based on The Hermit card shows a wise elder man holding a brightly lit gold lantern and a gold staff.

His head is turned down and to the side, focusing on shedding light onto his path as he picks his way through the night. He is focused on where his feet are stepping as he tracks new foot prints in the freshly fallen snow.

His feet maybe the first to walk in this exact direction because the snow has covered the paths that others would usually tread. He is a trail blazer, creating his own path using only his past experiences and desires to guide him instead of the paths and directions of those whom have come before him.

The Hermit Upright Meaning

When The Hermit card is turned over in a card reading and is in its upright position (the art work is right side up) it means that the reader will soon need to take make their own way in their quest (with their goals.) Often there is a nice and simple path written out for us and we can follow in the footsteps of those who have completed our goals before us.

But in this case this information if it exists is not available to us. We must make our own way completely from scratch. It can feel scary but The Hermit reminds us to trust in our past experiences and ourselves and take that first step. He carries his staff and lantern which are all the tools he needs for his adventure. We too, carry all we need within us.

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” - Oscar Wilde

The Hermit Reversed Meaning

The hermit reversed

If The Hermit card appears reversed (the artwork is upside down) then it has a different meaning. The Hermit card, reversed, is still about being independent but unfortunately its darker side: dependence.

We can become overly dependent on others sometimes and feel like we need them in order to survive. It is lovely to receive support from others but it is not essential.

The Hermit reversed says if we find that we have no one in our corner cheering us on, then we must be that person and cheer ourselves on. It can also refer to being overly independent and never accepting the help from others out of stubbornness or pride.

If people are willing to help we should allow them in and enjoy their company. Either extreme is not good for us and we should strive to find a balance which is optimum for our development.

“In A Society That Profits From Your Self Doubt, Liking Yourself Is A Rebellious Act” - Amy Pence Brown

The Hermit: Yes or No

The Hermit is most likely a no if the situation in question relates to a group or crowd of people. For example: should I join this new social club? -no. However if the situation refers to one of breaking away from the crowd and doing something independently then the answer is yes.

For example: Should I leave this social club so I have more free time to pursue a new hobby I want to try? - yes. This same formula of The Hermit: yes or no applies whether it is upright or reversed because it depends on the situation being discussed and how it makes the reader feel to be dependent/independent.  

Let’s Break Down The Hermit In Our Lives

How The Hermit card applies to the different facets of our lives.

The Hermit In Love

If the reader has asked a question about love either romantic or platonic and The Hermit card appears then it can suggest right now the reader needs to be more independent of their partner/loved ones. It’s not that there is anything wrong with anyone in our life, we just need to focus on finding ourselves and we can’t do that in a crowd of people.

Reversed The Hermit in love can mean codependency issues within romantic or platonic relationships. The feeling that we need a person/these people in order to survive. It’s very negative for us a long term because we lose our autonomy.

We must spend time disentangling these feelings and find balance where we appreciate others but don’t feel our survival is tethered to them.

The Hermit With Money

If The Hermit card appears when a question about money has been asked it is suggesting we think outside of the box and explore a new way that has never been tried before. It is a high risk high reward situation so we shouldn’t invest anything we are unable to live without if we were to lose it. (Don’t bet our rent money it.)

Reversed The Hermit with money means our experiment has failed and we need to go back to the tried and true way of earning. We may choose to continue this new way we have created but we need to understand it may be a hobby which costs us a little each month instead of a profitable new means of income as we first desired.

The Hermit At Work

When asking a question about a situation at work or about our careers The Hermit card can mean that it’s time to strike out on our own with self-employment, freelance or part time work. The office setting may not for us so it could be as simple as working from home in our own tailored environments or adventuring somewhere new altogether.

Reversed The Hermit at work suggests coming from a place of working alone (like freelance work) to entering a space of team work. We can do a lot on our own but we can do so much more as a team.

It suggests our pride is holding us back and we should let it go. Then we are able to share and gain so much more by working with others than we ever would have been able to by working solo.

The Hermit With Others

If we are asking about our external world, either our immediate world of people we know or the world at large and we get The Hermit card as an answer it means we are entering a phase of our lives called sacred solitude. The universe has purposefully made our social setting quieter so that we can hear and find ourselves during this time. This is often after a recent stressful period so that we can process it and heal.

Reversed The Hermit with others can signify we are feeling overwhelming loneliness caused by us removing ourselves from social settings. We need to spend time with people to remedy this.

This may make us anxious to do at first and we may feel a lot=t of social fatigue at first. It is important to remember that this is vital to our well being and in time we will feel so much happier.

The Hermit With Self

The Hermit card relates to our internal world by asking us to trust in ourselves over the words of others at this time. There can be great wisdom given to us by those we love but about this current situation we are being asked to trust in ourselves. Using our intuition, past experiences, skills and talents we will unlock the answer.

Reversed The Hermit card with self can symbolize that we have lost our way. This can mean literally in life like not knowing what we want to do in life but also mentally like the self-limiting thoughts we have learned to believe over time.

When we are so confused we can’t solve this alone. We need to seek guidance from an expert or someone we trust. This situation is only temporary and in time we will receive clarity.

The Hermit As Feelings

The Hermit feels like moving out of the family home, venturing out to parts of our town we haven’t visited before, exploring a new city and having the bravery to do all of the above alone. Maybe we don’t have anyone in our lives that shares this love of adventure with but that’s okay, because The Hermit tells us “feel the fear and do it anyway.”

It feels like an unshakeable trust in ourselves, that no matter where we go and even in unfamiliar terrain we have ourselves and thats’s all we need to get through any situation. There can be fear of being alone here but this card is the moment that we overcome the fear and take the first step away from the conventional to live a life that is more authentic to us. In short it feels like wanderlust and freedom.