The Tower Tarot Card Meanings

The Tower’s Upright & Reversed Meanings

The Tower tarot card image
The Tower (Reversed, Lacking)

Ideas: Old system, shelter, tradition

Traits: Complacent, conservative, fixed, ignorant, predictable

Emotions: Contentment, hope, relief, satisfaction

  • Actions:
    • Calming your inner storm
    • Clinging to traditions
    • Doing things the same way
    • Sheltering yourself from getting hurt
    • Starting from scratch
    • Sticking with old system
The Tower (Upright, Balanced)

Ideas: Deconstruction, demolition, destruction, disaster, upheaval

Traits: Abrupt, blunt, disconcerting, disorderly, disruptive, dramatic, unpredictable

Emotions: Alarm, astonishment, frustration, panic, shock, surprise

  • Actions:
    • Breaking out of old, confining habits and mindsets
    • Clearing the way for new growth
    • Dispelling the influence of an inflated ego
    • Getting back to basics
    • Making radical changes to the structure of a system
    • Stripping away harmful illusions
The Tower (Upright, Excessive)

Ideas: Infliction, troll, violent criticism

Traits: Dissonant, emotional, fiery, frightening, hostile

Emotions: Anger, defeat, dislike, hopelessness, hurt

  • Actions:
    • Criticizing others violently
    • Engaging in destructive behavior maliciously
    • Forcing an unwelcome decision on others
    • Picking a fight or quarrel
    • Tearing something or someone apart
    • Trolling

The Tower’s Advice

Personal Growth

Identify what holds you back and attack it. Embrace bold change. Criticism may come; if so, search each barbed word for a kernel of much-needed truth. Some of life’s greatest lessons are tough ones! With time, a bruised ego can become fertile ground for personal growth and maturity.

Relationship

Extinguish old flames before they have an opportunity to dampen promising new relationships. Despite the pain involved, a clean break is healthier than a lingering, drawn-out departure. Break down the walls and communicate honestly about what’s really happening.

Career

Sacrifice some sacred cows. Harsh criticism from above can clear ground for a new breakthrough. Something is blocking progress; identify it and boldly sweep it aside. Document everything; should the climate suddenly change, you want your ducks in a row.

Spirituality

Loss clears away the debris of the past, opening up new ground for new growth. As your heart opens, let old scar tissue fall away. Rather than live in fear of sudden loss, recognize that none of us owns anything. Practice detachment.

The Tower’s Symbols & Insights

The Lightning Bolt

Many old traditions interpret disasters as divine commentary. A bolt from the blue might not be God knocking at the door, but a sudden change in circumstance may call your attention to a pattern you’ve overlooked.

Darkness

With the exception of early decks (like the Marseilles), many Tower cards depict darkened skies. The moment of disaster is our lowest point. In what ways have you hit bottom?

The Toppled Crown

The crown in some illustrations represents the ego, or the self. Disasters and sudden challenges often clear the way for us to see ourselves in a new and unexpected light.

Plummeting Bodies

Universally, humans fear falling from great heights. Significantly, we fall from grace; exposed criminals “take the fall.” The scapegoat may be called the “fall guy.” How might your situation be impacted by someone’s metaphorical fear of falling?

More About The Tower Tarot Card

Prediction
Impending disaster.
Cancel plans and reverse decisions.
Someone wants to take you down a notch or two.
Don’t hold back; say what you really mean.
Timing
Within 23 months
Archetype
The shattered ego
Hebrew Alphabet
Pe[as] / Open Mouth / 80
Numerology Number
16 = 1 + 6 = 7
(the motive: imagination, inner work, psychology)
Classical Element
Fire
Astrological Planet
Mars
Myth/Spirit
The Tower of Babel
The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah
Shiva’s destructive dance
The lightning of Zeus and Thor
Story Character
In a moment of intense crisis, the main character apparently loses all. Alternatively, the utter setback at the end of act 2.
Questions to Ask
How might the current situation dramatically alter my perspective?
How might this loss open the door for new growth?
What attitudes need to be struck down before I proceed?
Other Tarot Card Meanings