18 - The Moon

Η Σελήνη


The Moon is a major arcana card that causes mixed feelings. It symbolizes the subconscious and unconscious, intuition, imagination, instincts and suppressed emotions. On the illustration of the card we can see a full moon (with a crescent one inside it) rising between two identical columns guarding the entrance to the realm of the unconscious. There is also a dog and a wolf howling at the bright moon and a scorpion coming out of the sea, a symbol of the emergence of the unconscious to the surface. 

General Meaning
The key message of this card is that under the light of the moon, nothing is as it seems. Have you ever had to drive overnight, away from the city, in a dark country road under the light of a full moon? When I did, I found no romantic glow to it. Instead, the intense moonlight made everything (the trees, the road, the small houses) appear strange, eerie and, well, yes, frightening. This is the energy of the Moon in the Tarot. It also symbolizes imagination and fantasies, instincts and illusions, dreams and nightmares, magic and madness, all the darkest sides of ourself that are now coming to light. It also stands for the feminine element and it is often associated with the menstrual cycle of women or gynecological problems.

As this is a very powerful feminine symbol, the appearance of the Moon in a spread can stand for an enchantress. This is a woman who charms her “victims” with her mysterious attitude and mind games. She can be very dangerous and ruthless if she decides to. Thus, this card is often associated with infidelity or a potential rival. 

On a second and perhaps more important level, the Moon stands for situations where everything is false. Nothing is what it seems to be. What you see or fear that is happening around you may be nothing more than a wrong impression. You are confused and can't see things clearly. The Moon card usually appears when some dark parts of yourself are preparing to come to light: deep fear, doubt, worry, jealousy, insecurity. The Moon is a distorting lens, through which we can't perceive reality. This is a time when illusion and falsehood rule. 

Look at the dog and the wolf on the card. They are related species: one domesticated, the other wild. This symbolism implies that everyone, regardless of their social status or education, are equally vulnerable to such dark feelings. You need to be extra cautious, as this card indicates the risk of being deceived by your own false impressions. The Moon card is also associated with mood swings, depression, substance abuse, illusions and even, hallucinations. When you get this card, you are advised to overcome your fears by distancing yourself and allowing the air to clear before making any final decisions. The Moon emphasizes any physic abilities and intuitions. If you have a very strong feeling about something, trust it but don't act now.

The positive side of this card is that when you feel you're drowning in the Moon's murky waters, you can use this energy creatively: your imagination can produce some great works of art. But you still need to be careful: if you are caught up in the destructive emotional tempest brought about by the Moon, it's very easy to lose yourself in the whirlwind. 

In negative position
The interpretation of the Moon doesn't change. 

The reversed Moon destroys all creative aspects of her upright sister. This is the darkest side of the human soul. Madness, possessiveness, destructive jealousy, uncontrolled reactions are all possible when you get the Moon card reversed. Everything is out of control and chaos rules. Deep despair and violence or black magic are very possible. You need to get help as soon as possible. Move immediately away from people who are pushing you over your limits. Avoid all possibly chaotic situations. Protect yourself at any cost.




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