The Hermit Tarot Card Meanings (Upright & Reversed)
Last Updated: June 14, 2022
The Hermit is the ninth card (IX) in the major arcana of the Tarot. The Hermit is the archetype of solitude as a choice in order to find oneself. This card traditionally represents the Hermit as an old man, cloaked and holding a lantern and a staff, representing wisdom that illuminates the way forward and knowledge that one can lean on.
Being associated with the Earth sign Virgo, The Hermit also has strong ties to reclusion in nature, where one might be alone, away from humans, but where one is surrounded by connection to all the other forms of life in our world.
In this article, we will explore the different meanings of the Hermit Tarot card in various reading contexts as well as the different advice it can offer.
Table of content
- Traditional depiction
- Key correspondences
- The upright Hermit meaning
- Upright meaning for love
- Upright meaning for career
- Upright meaning for health
- The Hermit as feelings
- The Hermit as a person
- The Hermit as advice
- The Hermit Zodiac sign
- Is the Hermit a yes or no card?
- The reversed Hermit meaning
- Reversed meaning for love
- Reversed meaning for career
- Reversed meaning for health
- How to use the Hermit in spellwork
- How to use the Hermit in dreamwork
The Hermit tarot card key correspondences
searching, solitude, introspection, inner journey, learning
loneliness, isolation, exile, withdrawal, need for connection
|Yes or No|
What does the upright Hermit (tarot card IX) mean?
When The Hermit appears in a reading, it’s advising you to take some time alone to connect with your inner voice and to seek the answers you hold within. It could mean embodying that figure of wisdom yourself, or someone in your life as a mentor figure. This card represents needing both physical and mental space; the physical solitude necessary to find mental clarity.
The Hermit is the card of searching, solitude, introspection, inner journey, and learning.
What does the upright Hermit mean in a love reading?
When The Hermit appears in a love and relationships reading, it speaks to a need to take some time. Maybe you’ve just come out of a relationship and you’re being advised to not jump straight back into the next one. To truly take the time to integrate the lessons that experience revealed to you, and to spend time getting to know yourself more deeply, your desires and needs.
If you’re already in a relationship, then maybe you need to spend time exploring these questions together, through honest and vulnerable communication, potentially with the help of a couples or family therapist.
What does the upright Hermit mean in a career reading?
When The Hermit appears in a Career reading, it could be an indication that your desire for meaningful work is starting to outweigh your desire for work that brings you social recognition or financial ease.
Similarly, in regards to a Prosperity reading, you may be experiencing realisations around the fact that material things don’t bring the kind of true happiness you can find from the immaterial experiences in life. Maybe redirect your financial flow to reflect that in a way that feels aligned to you.
What does the upright Hermit mean in a health reading?
Health wise, The Hermit is a card that very much focuses on mental and spiritual health. To draw this card in a health reading is an indication that you need to engage in activities that involve tuning into your individual spiritual health, like meditation, walking, gong baths, working with crystals, etc.
The Hermit is associated with the sign Virgo, that rules the guts, so maybe look out for gastrointestinal issues, or be proactive in supporting that aspect of your health with some probiotics.
The Hermit tarot card as feelings/emotions
If you are asking the tarot how someone feels about you, pulling the hermit means that they are not entirely sure. They may be thinking about you often, but they are not ready to share their feelings just yet. This person may need some time alone to figure things out before they can let you in.
When it comes to you personally, this card makes you feel like there’s a nudging in your gut to take time out from others, that you are potentially more physically tired around others and need some alone time with books, meditation, and other self-nourishing mental tasks.
The Hermit as an emotion fuels intuition, vulnerability, fragility, and isolation. To feed your inspiration, your interests, and your curiosity, balance out your emotional wellbeing with some meditation, journaling, and brain dumping.
The Hermit tarot card as a person
As a personality archetype, the Hermit represents someone who is introspective, independent, and often misunderstood. This is someone who prefers their own company to that of others, and who likes to take their time when making decisions.
Someone who doesn’t speak up as often, but when they do the wisdom is always spot on. It is someone who is quite mindful not just of themselves, but of others and nature too. They are typically someone who is happier with a book, big on meditation, and find ways to fuel their intellect.
The Hermit tarot card as advice
If you are asking the tarot for advice regarding a specific situation in your life, pulling the Hermit means that you should take some time for yourself. This is a period of introspection where you will do your best thinking and problem-solving. Go for walks, read books, and spend time alone in nature.
This is not the time to seek advice from others, as you are fully capable of figuring things out on your own. Take some time for yourself, see what aligns with you spiritually, and if it sparks your curiosity – follow this joy.
What zodiac sign is associated with the Hermit tarot card?
The Hermit is linked with the zodiac sign Virgo, and the planet Mercury. What Mercury corresponds with The Hermit is that they both have the qualities of being analytical, rational, and wise. Virgo is known for being hard-working and detail-oriented, which are both qualities that The Hermit possesses.
Virgo is an earth sign, which means that those who identify with this zodiac tend to be grounded and practical. They like to live in the moment and focus on what they can control. This is similar to The Hermit, who also lives in the present moment and values their independence.
Is the Hermit a yes or no card?
Typically depending on the question, it sides more with “No”. Do not go out when staying in can be more beneficial for you, do not jump from relationship to relationship, and do not ignore signs of poor mental health or declining spiritual wellbeing.
It’s the “taking time out for yourself” card that is most needed to hear sometimes, and if we are uncomfortable giving ourselves permission to say no, The Hermit tarot card can do so for us.
Below are some of my interpretations based on different types of questions:
- “Will I get the job?” The Hermit suggests that this isn’t the right fit for you work-wise even if you did get the role, and to reassess what would be more fulfilling intellectually and spiritually for yourself.
- “Is this new person in my life good for me?” The Hermit indicates that you should probably be focusing more on yourself, and what is good for you, rather than what others can offer you.
- “Will I achieve my current goals?” The Hermit suggests here that yes you might achieve your goals if you plan to study, keep yourself interested and make it meaningful.
- “Should I make that investment?” The Hermit suggests that you need to check in with yourself and ask yourself if the investment actually aligns with you, and what you care about in the long term.
- “Should I start my own business?” The Hermit would indicate here that if you really wanted to start your business, you need to spend the time to reflect on all the aspects involved before making a decision. It’s a deep commitment that may be taxing on you mentally and spiritually, so be wary of that type of impact.
What does the reversed Hermit card mean in the Tarot?
When The Hermit is reversed, if you feel like you’ve been applying this archetype’s energy, then it’s time to leave isolation and return to interaction with society, newly wise from the lessons you’ve learned in introspection. Thus it can speak to a level of solitude that’s excluding you from a connection.
However, reversed, it can also mean that you have been ignoring this call to step away from the noise of the crowd – what aspect of facing yourself alone do you find difficult?
The reversed Hermit is the card of loneliness, isolation, exile, withdrawal, and a need for connection.
What does the reversed Hermit mean in a love reading?
In the context of a relationship reading, if you are in a relationship, then The Hermit reversed could mean that you’re feeling lonely and distanced from your partner. This can be on a physical or emotional level.
What could you implement to recreate some connection? If you’re not currently in a relationship, The Hermit reversed can be an advice that it’s time to return to dating, or at least to a state of mind where you’re open to meeting someone.
What does the reversed Hermit mean in a career reading?
In regards to your career, The Hermit reversed could mean a certain sense of solitude in the workplace, not necessarily of your own choosing. Maybe you feel unsupported by your colleagues or an outcast from workplace dynamics and relations.
It could also mean you’ve been working on a specific project alone for a certain amount of time, and now is a great moment to turn to others to ask for input or support.
Prosperity wise now could also be a good time to get some outside advice and to bring your individual reflections on what money means to you into a more communal context.
What does the reversed Hermit mean in a health reading?
As we’ve mentioned, The Hermit is associated with the zodiac sign of Virgo, who in turn rules the 6th house in Astrology – the house of daily routines and rituals. How are your habits supporting your health?
If The Hermit appears in reverse in a health reading, this could be an advice to take a closer look at your daily routine and the ways in which it’s supporting, or not supporting, your physical, mental and spiritual health. What do you need? How can you implement that for yourself?
How to use the Hermit card in your Spellwork
The Hermit is an amazing card to work with if you want to perform a ritual to enhance your comfort levels around being alone. No one wants to be lonely, but learning how to genuinely enjoy spending quality time with yourself is a valuable skill to master in order to build your emotional and spiritual autonomy.
With The Hermit being linked to Virgo and the 6th house of routines in astrology, use it as a signifier card to help you build a ritual moment of self-connection in your day. This can be in the morning when you get up or before you go to bed, whichever feels best to you.
Choose a quiet, comfortable spot in your home where you can focus and not be disturbed. Make yourself a herbal tea with some Virgo herbs like Vervain, Lavender, Thyme, Peppermint or Chamomile. Place The Hermit card where you can see it, with a Virgo crystal like Amazonite, Moss Agate or Unakite.
Practise deep breathing for a few minutes, focusing on calling your inner Hermit out to guide you. As you sip your tea, get your journal and connect with The Hermit through journal prompts like :
- What does solitude feel like to me ? Where does that come from ?
- How is my relationship with myself doing ? How could I support deepening it further ?
- When do I feel connected to nature ? Do I prioritise that relationship currently ?
- Do others come to me for advice ? How does that make me feel ?
Go from a prompt, and then let your writing take you on a journey into yourself. Virgo rules both the digestive system and the intellect through Mercury, and sometimes your brain just needs to… have a brain dump.
When you’ve written enough, take The Hermit card in one hand and your crystal in the other, take a few more deep, thoughtful breaths and say an affirmation inspired by this cards energy, such as “All of the answers lie within me”, or “I am meeting myself in solitude and greeting myself on this journey”.
Now you’re ready to start your day – or go to bed.
Card symbolism with archetype psychology
The archetype of The Hermit is that of the wonderer/wanderer. They’re on a physical journey away from others and a spiritual journey towards themselves.
Their need to withdraw from the outside world stems from a need for peace and quiet in order to have the space to examine their thoughts.
Indeed, The Hermit is a seeker of a deeper understanding of the world around them, starting with themselves.
Through this journey, The Hermit can blossom into a wise advisor who can use their experience to help others seek out their inner truths.
If you want to know more about the different tarot cards, feel free to check out our complete list of all 78 tarot cards and their meanings.
Written By Daisy Forrest
Daisy Forrest is a queer, neurodivergant witch, astrologer and writer based in France. She is a qualified workshop organizer and space holder, who’s currently merging her passion for IFS therapy and astrology into her signature coaching offering called Selves. She’s on a journey to heal generational trauma through astrology, tarot, witchcraft, therapy and manifestation. You can find her writing about these themes on Instagram @Daisy Forrest, or on her website daisyforrest.com