Death Reversed Tarot Card


Stagnation and delay are the rules of the day when Death reversed shows up in a tarot card spread. The key here is determining when and where these delays occur and who is responsible. Identify those, and you’ll have the keys to opening up a new path.

No, Not THAT Death

Let’s get this out of the way for those who’ve just tuned in to tarot cards: The Death card and its reversed form are not really about physical death. Sure, they can be, but this is the Endings and Beginnings card of the Major Arcana. Just as upright Death does not automatically mean you’re going to physically die, the reversed Death card does not mean that someone’s going to die a protracted death where relief is delayed.

What Death is about is change, endings, beginnings, and the whole cycle created by those events. The tarot has a few cards dealing with changes, but Death is one of the big ones (the Tower is the other), where a situation ends and another takes its place. This can refer to anything from a location to a state of mind. Whatever it is, the change is key to your growth. It’s not just your everyday ups and downs.

Everything That Interferes With Change

So, if Death is change associated with endings and beginnings, Death reversed is a straightforward message of delayed or blocked change. It’s not really unexpected change or wild-energy, hard-to-control change; Death can be unexpected, but this card evokes more of a gradual or planned transition. The Tower is the one with the really unexpected, surprising changes.

But when Death reversed shows up, that change is delayed, blocked, dragged out, opposed, you name it. Were you expecting to start your own company and leave your current job? Maybe it takes longer to get the new company to the point where you can afford to leave the old job, so you’re there for months longer than you planned. Maybe you want to move to another state for cheaper rent, but every city you look at suddenly goes through a growth spurt, resulting in increased rents. The circumstances change, resulting in a delayed ending and beginning.

Or, maybe you want to take that sweet new job or go off on that dream adventure, but your spouse suddenly objects. He or she can’t really command you not to change, but going ahead will certainly create issues; muddling through that and figuring out which decision is best for you can block change for a while.

Where the card shows up in the spread is crucial. If Death reversed shows up in a past position, there could have been a delay that was more pertinent to your current situation than you realized, but you’re generally past that influence now. Death in a present-influence position or overall-influence spot could mean the delay or opposition is something you need to deal with now – not necessarily through confrontation, but you must investigate the cause now and work with it or around it.

Death reversed in positions indicating other people, such as the second-from-the-bottom card in the staff/vertical part of the Celtic Cross spread, indicate someone else is getting into the mix. Look around you at the people and organizations you deal with, and at society in general. Maybe you’re on track, but others might not be, and their actions (or lack thereof) could affect you. Be patient in dealing with others in this situation as not everyone reacts well to change. But if you know the change is best for you, look at ways to get around this person, society, the economy, or whatever outside influence is blocking your change. (Please do this in legal ways.)

Two more positions in the spread are the most important here. Death reversed in a spot that indicates your feelings or actions can reveal some inner turmoil. Do you really want to make this change? Are you self-sabotaging? (Look for the Seven of Swords for confirmation.) Is this a change you have to make but are resisting to the point of making things more complicated for yourself? You’ve got to work on this. If this is a voluntary change but you truly don’t feel good about it, you can’t ignore the problem and hope you adjust. If it’s an involuntary change, figure out ways to ease your transition so that it’s at least gentle on your life.

Finally, there’s the outcome of the spread. Many spreads, like the Celtic Cross, have outcome cards that answer the question. For short-term outcomes, you have a chance to adjust the situation and head toward a more successful long-term outcome. But if Death reversed appears in a final outcome spot, you need to re-evaluate what you’re planning. Something about your current way of doing things could result in a massive delay or even failure to accomplish what you’d hoped with the change. This is wide open. Look at yourself, the timing, and more. You can always do another spread to zero in on what is standing in your way and leading you to that result.

Death reversed does not mean you’ll never accomplish or get through the change to your new beginning. It does mean that you have to investigate how you are doing things, who you are relying on, what you hope the change brings about, and how reliant you are on that change to make you happier than you are now.

So, don’t worry when Death reversed shows up. This is your chance to revamp your plans so that your journey through a change ends up being much better and more successful.

Situations like this can be difficult to interpret because you are so close to them. It helps to have an independent reader take a look at your cards and read for you. Professional tarot readings can also give you new information that you might not have considered before. Get an online tarot reading on Keen today!

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