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The reversed hierophant: Broken trust

Rider Waite Hierophant reversed
rider waite

In its upright position, we think of the hierophant as representing traditional wisdom and the traditional way of doing things. The hierophant is somebody who is respected. This is somebody we look to for answers when we need answers. This is somebody whose word means everything. If we can’t trust them, who can we trust? In society, we need some things to sacred. We need the comfort of knowing that no matter what, we can fall back on the infallible words and wisdom of our wise ones. In the upright position, the hierophant is that infallible wise one. What happens though, when the hierophant turns up in the reversed position?

In the reversed position, the words and the inspirations of the hierophant are no longer perfect. There is something wrong here. Here, there is a degree of dishonesty. A trust has been broken. Is nothing scared? Is there nothing left to believe in? Did we, perhaps, put too much faith in this entity?

In the upright position, the hierophant offers what he knows to be true for the good of the truth seekers, and those desiring knowledge. He does not do it for personal gain. There is a perfect bond of trust here. In the reversed position though, that bond is broken.

In the reversed position, we think of somebody who is supplying misinformation for personal gain. For what reason would a person choose to keep another in the dark about any particular situation? Why would they directly lie to somebody? Insincere people and those who stand to gain from the ignorance of others will keep others in the dark when they think they need to. It can be a business, political, social, religious, or spiritual decision to do this. It is dangerous in that degrades trust, not just trust in the individuals involved, but in the greater organizational or societal structure they are entrenched in.

When the hierophant comes up for you in the reversed position, consider the situation you are asking about. Does it involve the integrity of another? If so, it would be wise for you to question their words and what may be motivating them. Does something not feel quite right about them? Trust that instinct.

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