Exploring The World

Welcome to Tarot Thursdays! This week we will be exploring The World 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


The World is card number 21 in the deck and the twenty-second card in the Major Arcana of the Tarot.

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

Card Examples

L-21Notice 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

The Mythic Tarot depicts the Greek god, Hermaphroditus, surrounded by the world snake, Ophion. Around this snake are the symbols of each suit of the tarot. And take note of Hermaphroditus’s legs here. The legs are posed exactly the same as The Hanged Man‘s. The same is true for the Universal Tarot card here.

It’s mentioned on the Biddy Tarot site’s description of this card that the reason for this is because The Hanged Man is about looking inward while The World is about looking outward. I’m not sure if this is the case, so much as The Hanged Man’s goal is to see things differently from the rest of the world. I honestly thought the entire point of that card was to seek a different perspective.

In the Dragon Tarot card, the dragon is wrapped around the world. This suggests to me that this dragon is the world serpent here. I think the best known is Jörmungandr from Norse mythology. So perhaps this deck does borrow from a wide variety of myths and legends rather than just one.

The final card in the set is the Tarot of Dreams, which I think took a rather interesting spin on the card. Here we have a compass looking object in the center with the elements surrounding it, but inside this compass is none other than The Fool against the backdrop of the world map. It does indeed give me the impression he is well traveled and knows what he’s doing.

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:


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:


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

What this Card Means to Me

This card is about completion, coming full circle, and beginning anew. It’s a much grander scale than what Death is.

The Death card suggests something coming to an end by means of transformation. The World card suggests something coming to an end by means of integration. So instead of cutting away, and losing something, we are growing into something here. We are becoming more than what we were before. We are gaining something here.

And with that gain, we now have a new foundation from which to embark upon a new Fool’s Journey if we so choose. Naturally, we can enjoy our “happily ever after” for a bit and share our experiences with others first. After all, what’s a good story without a grand finale?

The keyword I choose for this card is: COMPLETION.

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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