The Hanged Man - Meanings, Symbols.....
The Hanged Man is the 12th card of the major arcana. We see a male figure hanging by a rope upside down. Images of torture come to mind. As described in Yoav Ben Doav's book, The Marseille Tarot Revealed, hanging someone upside down was a form of torture. This was used in ancient times to humiliate and inflict pain on those with unconventional beliefs of the times - Romans would hang Christians and in other places, Jews and Muslims would be hung upside down. When you look at this card, the theme of punishment, backing away from a situation, pausing to reflect, and sacrifice comes to mind.
What the card can represent:
A pause to gain a moment of steadiness after a turbulent time
Sacrifice in order to maintain one's principles or faith
Reflection of oneself, situation/environment before going forward
Warning of sacrificing yourself so much that you are putting yourself at risk
Warning of martyr syndrome/complex
Warning of victim complex in the way that a person is not coping in healthy ways
The Hanged Man can remind us:
We have choices. We don't have to do everything all at once. We can choose our activities
We can take a break. If we are feeling that we are taking on too much; we may allow ourselves a break.
Making no decision is actually a decision, We have made the choice not to act
The top branch used as a beam indicates balancing two opposing choice