Exploring The Tower

Welcome to Tarot Thursdays! This week we will be exploring The Tower and how it can be used as a prompt or brainstorming in our writing.

Tarot is an interesting thing. It’s based upon symbolism and metaphors through imagery. With these images the subconscious mind is tapped into through the story provided. Not everyone gets the same thing from a piece of art. Each piece will influence each person in a slightly different way.


Introduction of the Card

16

The Tower is card number 16 in the deck and the seventeenth card in the Major Arcana of the Tarot.

Let’s take a look at the following examples of this card below.


Card Examples

L-16Notice the similarities between them and take note of their differences. Do any of these move you more than the others? Take your time and allow these cards to tell you their story.


My Analysis of These Cards

Oddly enough, I do like seeing this card. Most people don’t. I’ll get to more on why later down in the post.

In the Mythic Tarot card, we Poseidon just wrecking a tower on a tiny island in the middle of no where out in the ocean. There are no defenses and it’s just coming down. If you ask me, this tower is looking kind of old and and abandoned too.

We have a similar situation in the Dragon Tarot card. Big, giant dragon is wrapping himself around an empty, lone tower and is just crushing it with a tight squeeze. There doesn’t seem to be anyone around to care about all this. Business as usual for this dragon I guess.

This get more dramatic with the Universal Tarot card. The king and queen have been tossed out of the tower and they’re falling upside down as the tower is being destroyed with lightening and fire. Now we have people that care. Now we have someone that’s upset. I can’t see how the king or the queen could possibly be happy about all this.

Finally we have the Tarot of Dreams card. I don’t see any people in the image, but the tower here doesn’t look like it’s an abandoned tower. It looks like it has been taken care of and it’s been lived in. I imagine someone in there isn’t happy that lightening has struck it the way it has.


Themes of the Card

Each card has a set of keywords associated with it that serve as themes for its image. These keywords will vary somewhat depending on who you ask.

According to the Learning the Tarot website, the keywords associated with the card are:

  • SUDDEN CHANGE
  • RELEASE
  • DOWNFALL
  • REVELATION

You can learn more about what this site has to say about this card here.

According to the Biddy Tarot website, the keywords associated with the card are:

  • DISASTER
  • UPHEAVAL
  • SUDDEN CHANGE
  • REVELATION

You can learn more about what this site has to say about this card here.


What this Card Means to Me

I mentioned that I like seeing this card. Why is that? I’m seldom ever surprised to this card because I tend to get myself into ruts, so when I see it I know I’m long overdue to shake myself out of one. It’s time for me to reevaluate what I’m really doing with myself and why I’m doing it. This does mean it’s an easy thing to do.

Most recent example? I had this old, beat up car rusting on my parents’ lawn. The frame on this vehicle was beyond shot. I couldn’t bring myself to part with it even though I couldn’t afford to fix it because it was the first car I had ever purchased completely in my own name and paid off all by myself. No help from anyone. And I did it all as a single parent before meeting my ex.

Somehow my ego had gotten wrapped up into this car and I had falsely believed that it represented my independence. But it was the old me. Not the new me. It was the old me before my ex. Before the postpartum psychosis. Before the PTSD. All before the point of no return. I had changed and this car was all part of the life I can’t go back to.

When I had realized this, that I was holding onto garbage for the sake of my ego, I decided to get rid of the car. Suddenly, it was an emotional crisis even though this was something my parents had wanted me to do for years. It took me a week to process these feelings. This included crying about it and talking to my therapist.

She told me that it was natural for me to feel like this shift within me was a sudden change because it was a revelation on my part. It was normal for my emotions to be in an upheaval as a result. I needed to give myself permission to mourn the old me so that I could then clear away for the new me. Until I could that, I wasn’t going to be able to grow. So I did that. I allowed myself to cry and by the next week, I felt ready to get rid of this junky car.

I had to clean it out and make sure I kept everything important in it that we wanted to keep. You know, toys and CDs. Stuff like that. I found so much rot. Animals had been in it. They had torn up the seats. Torn up the insides of the walls of the car. The smell was awful to say the least. There was next to nothing worth saving.

As I was cleaning out the garbage from this car, I felt this weight lifting from me. Like I was finally letting go an old part of myself. This part of me is really gone. And I realized that by trying to hold on to it, I was rotting in places. I realized I can’t do that anymore.

So as I watched this junk car get towed away, I felt released. Until then, I had no idea how trapped I had been in this rut of the past. Yes, it had been upsetting and it hurt but I’m glad that I finally got rid of it. I’m glad that I now have the space for new growth.

The keyword I choose for this card is: REVELATION.


Music Playlist

In this spirit of all this, these are the songs I have picked out for this card.


The Writing Exercise

This exercise is a free write. Permit yourself to write whatever comes to mind based upon the theme of this card. Choose a keyword or key phrase and run with it to see what you come up with.


I would love it if you linked or pinged back what you wrote so I could see where you went with this.

Happy writing!


Mythic Tarot by Liz Greene (Author), Juliet Sharman-Burke (Author), Tricia Newell (Illustrator) © 1989
Dragon Tarot by Terry Donaldson (Author), Peter Pracownik (Author) © 1996
Universal Tarot by Lo Scarabeo (Author), R. De Angelis (Illustrator), A. E. Waite (Designer) © 2001
Tarot of Dreams by Ciro Marchetti (Author), Lee Bursten (Author) © 2015

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