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The Hierophant

Traditional Meanings

Keywords: Tradition, education, conformity, religious doctrines, search for inner meaning, orthodoxy, obedience to tradition, religious dogma, hypocrisy

The Hierophant represents orthodoxy and ‘doing things by the book’. It can represent the ceremony of marriage as well as organised religion. The key ideas are tradition and guidance and this can also come in the form of formal knowledge and education in academic establishments. 

In a reading this can signify the need to conform to traditional and conventional ideas and orthodox approaches. It is about teaching others what you have learned and the giving or receiving of advice. Obedience to a set of external rules is indicated and learning how to ‘play the game’. As mundane as this sounds, sometimes it’s a good idea to play by the rules and not ‘re-invent the wheel’ and this can assist you. Conventional morality may figure in your situation either as a hindrance or a help and you may be following the internalised rules of your culture and feel that your free thinking is being repressed causing you to want to rebel.

 You might also be feeling oppressed by the ‘shoulds’ and ‘oughts’ of life. This is very much the card of assertion of moral laws and the notion of ‘good’ and ‘evil’ and the judgemental experience that follows from this. You will do well to seek out an authority in your field for guidance. It can also mean following your conscience.  

Soul Guidance

 In the ancient Mystery Schools, the Hierophant was the master of ceremonies who guided people from their mundane experience and initiated them into the spiritual realms. They were exceptionally gifted and could induce an ecstatic trance in thousands of people at a time.  

This card can represent the desire to develop spiritual knowing. Align with the eternal truths, spiritual teachings and principles that are of value to you and have a daily practice that expresses your own personal spiritual philosophy. Be aware that traditional approaches and spiritual regimens will bring you benefit.

You can trust guidance from your Inner Guide and you will gain benefit from consulting trusted teachers, healers and counsellors. Develop your ‘in-tuition’ by practising ‘inner hearing’. This type of ‘in-tuition’ is above reason but never contradicts it and will never guide you to do anything unethical or selfish. 

Reversed: Unusual, unconventional and exploratory experiences. It can also mean not listening to your intuition or synchronistic messages. There is also a danger of hubris, materialism and superficiality which in turn can block access to spiritual resources.

Soul Prompts

  • What motivates you to connect to your spiritual source?
  • What will support you in developing and maintaining a consistent spiritual practice?
  • What rules or laws do you feel you have transgressed?
  • What traditions do you uphold and what traditions do you rebel against?
  • What are you learning

Soul Message

Many people have trodden the spiritual path before you. Seek out guidance and learn from what has gone before whilst maintaining your own inner authority.