Aeclectic Tarot
Tarot Cards & Reviews          Free Tarot Readings           What's New           Tarot Card Meanings

Robin Wood, Heirophant #5

  > Aeclectic Tarot Forum > Tarot Special Interest > Tarot Study Groups > Individual Deck Studies > Robin Wood Tarot

ana luisa's Avatar
ana luisa  ana luisa is offline
Join Date: 29 Apr 2006
Location: Rio de Janeiro BRASIL
Posts: 8,280
ana luisa 

I love this detail!!! AND it was intentional!! How clever! I may save some money to invest on the book. Some part of me keeps hearing the boy on the right thinking to himself "what a bunch of c...!" You could read this opposition in so many layers !!!
Top   #31
Morwenna's Avatar
Morwenna  Morwenna is offline
Oversized hobbit
Join Date: 04 May 2008
Location: Connecticut, USA
Posts: 4,843

I see the reasoning. But I still don't like the card.
Top   #32
shiresun's Avatar
shiresun  shiresun is offline
Join Date: 15 Feb 2010
Location: Seeker's Journey
Posts: 480

Two days ago, I met The Hierophant for the first time. I always entitle my entries with a 'sense' of my first impression of the image. This is my title for this card:

Unpleasant Meetings

Sometimes life is filled with unpleasantries, but in a Fool's Paradise, well, we have the tendancy to look the other way. To cross the street when we see an unfriendly pack a dogs heading straight for us. What is more, having just recently met four very lovely people, I was quite taken aback when a very displeasing image met me as I stepped into the realm of The Hierophant.

This is an elder man, who gives the impression of self-righteous piousness. He appears stern, and distant. The stark contrast between him and the chamber in which he stands, gives the impression that he feels all else pales in comparison to him. He is large and imposing, dressed in ornate robes with the front panels golden with a flower and leaf filled runner, yet there is something off about that part.

This cloak is hiding all but his hands; the left grasping a scepter and the right held up as if to hush a crowd. They appear bloodless, or are sheathed in white gloves. His hat is that of a pope, large and studded with rubies. The color of the cloak below the runner panels is not quite red, and not quite purple, giving the sense of muted colors. Above his robes is a white collar, all of which (cloak/robes/gloves and collar) seems to hide him, as if he is presenting a false reality to the world, and the drabbness of the pillars between which he stands, may be more indicative of who he is: one dimensional, unyielding. His eyes are dark slits, and his expression is close to a scowl.

There is no friendliness here.

Two young boys kneel in prayer before him, almost as if he hopes their innocence will hide his cold heart.

The pillars present the male aspect on his left, with hoards of common folk behind, laden down like slaves trudging through their day. Likewise, the right side presents the feminine aspect, with sheep and he stands between these, as a seperatist, ruling the flocks as he sees fit.

The feeling of this card is immediate distaste. It is very off-putting and manifests that which is untouchable; higher than all else, like a puppeteer, controlling everything in his domain. There is a rigidity about it. This is not someone I'd care to sit and speak with, even if I thought he'd bother to give his time to the little folk.

I find it interesting that he represents the number 5, which in part, represents on the contrary side, perversion (as if he is perverting the old Ways), and corruption. The presence of the young innocent boys, cannot erase the potential wicked use of his power.

* * *

I have since read Robin's own interpretation for the card she has created, and find it interesting that her own feeling about it parallels what I actually saw. I expected she would explain it in a way I could not see.

Of note, but not actually put into my blog (though is in my work journal) is that I wanted to get as far away from the card as fast as I can, and have actually left it in my work journal as a bookmark for those pages, instead of keeping it out where I can see it. Whatever this card has as a 'teaching' for me it shows me there is some major issue I've been ignoring in myself... okay not ignoring, but allowing to manifest, and it's as ugly as Robin's depiction of The Hierophant is: Intolerance! MUCH work to be done here.


Top   #33
shiresun's Avatar
shiresun  shiresun is offline
Join Date: 15 Feb 2010
Location: Seeker's Journey
Posts: 480
Not Done Yet!

From outside the box of patriarchal tradition

Mind blowing revelations! And seeing the bright side of another, otherwise less than pleasing image/representative of this patriarchal-specific, traditional Tarot card.

As mentioned above, I'd been given a link to a blog in which a month-long study of the Hierophant had been discussed. I'd read many of the entries, but had not actually gotten down the whole list. So here's the KICKER.

Today, I finished up (see previous entry) my information about Robin's Hierophant, with some quite astounding revelations at the end. But the insights and revelations never DO end. I actually remember while looking through some of the other images from decks at the link I'd been given, one deck creator had tried to put a new, more reasonable spin on the older traditional graphics, and even renamed it 'Faith.' Still, I did not find solace in the new image, though I was not at all repulsed the way I had been when first setting my eyes on Robin's Hierophant. So I had not seen the light yet and wondered if I ever would, even while I could admit that the Robin Wood Hierophant actually did teach me something... more than any other at this early stage in my journey.

At some point, probably during my time spent with The High Priestess, I'd included some information about a reading I'd asked for at the site for the Gaian Tarot. Of importance is the fact that not all the cards carry the same names of the traditional Tarot decks. Plus, it was long enough ago that I couldn't remember, off the top of my head, what the 3rd card in the Gaian reading had been, though I remember that it did talk about that my teacher (for whom I'd been searching decades worth of time) would appear, but in disguise, more than likely.

In the end, my road led me here, where I discovered my Teacher; which I like to think of as the 78 Insights Into My Soul. And the lessons seem to be coming not only (seemingly) fast and furious, but are of the 'mallet/head' kind - meaning there are more times than not, I have to be hit over the head with a mallet to get something that is right in front of me.

Okay, okay... getting to my point here... After I'd posted the above this morning, I had some stuff to do and when I came back, I spent some time over at the blog where the monthly study of The Hierophant had taken place. I was scolling down, almost scanning when I spied The Gaian Tarot version of this card. Mallet/Head!!!! THIS was the card that I couldn't remember! GOOD LORD GISBURNE! I feel like I'm falling down the rabbit hole! But, but, but, but.... wait... how could there be such a vast difference? That is what is SO outstanding about Tarot.

I THINK (because I do not yet know) that I have found a way to accept, and put The Hierophant into words that make sense to me, to know why this card is in the Tarot deck, and to have a completely diffent perspective... Now I can't say with any sense of validation, yet, but I THINK, that I've seen something else I've never considered as an absolute beginner... the reversal of this card is what Robin presented. The upright is what the Gaian Tarot presents.

For now I'm on Robin's journey and I'm happy to be here; happier than I've been in forever.... okay, maybe in about 10 years (on the inner work front at least). I want to learn to not turn away from things that have been major issues for me. I want to find a way to transform previously held intolerant feelings that reside within, and I may have just seen a doorway to that...

Many thanks to BlueDragonfly for directing me to that month long study, and being fabulously supportive of my efforts here as I tread the waters of this new journey, and to Shadowdancer who brought up the idea about making that perfect Tarot Deck. Thanks also to everyone who previously posted here in the Robin Wood group on The Hierophant and to the awesome insight from those who responded to my own query, back before I even got my deck, about 'Cards That Bother You.'

*wonders if it's soup yet?*
Top   #34
Kali Kitty's Avatar
Kali Kitty  Kali Kitty is offline
Join Date: 08 Jul 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 162
Kali Kitty 
I believe spirituality has evolved.. into more aeclectic forms.. :)

What a joyless character is this Hierophant. He looks like someone who talks but never wants to listen, because he believes he holds all the knowledge of value already. He thinks what he knows, you need to pay attention to. He doesn't seem to value the persons before him as people. To pose like that while they bow their heads in submission is to assert power over them. Fingers pointing upwards to avow the power is god-given. It reminds me of a poem by Kingsley Amis...

The Voice of Authority: A Language Game

Do this. Don't move. O'Grady says do this,
You get a move on, see, do what I say.
Look lively when I say O'Grady says.

Say this. Shut up. O'Grady says say this,
You talk fast without thinking what to say.
What goes is what I say O'Grady says.

Or rather let me put the point like this:
O'Grady says what goes is what I say
O'Grady says; that's what O'Grady says.

By substituting you can shorten this,
Since any god you like will do to say
The things you like, that's what O'Grady says.

The harm lies not in that, but that in this
Progression's first and last terms are I say
O'Grady says, not just O'Grady says.

Yet it's O'Grady must be out of this
Before what we say goes, not what we say
O'Grady says. Or so O'Grady says.
Top   #35
velvetina's Avatar
velvetina  velvetina is offline
Join Date: 06 Apr 2011
Location: Haworth, England
Posts: 564

I thought I'd add my thoughts on this card as I seem to have a slightly different take upon it.

I haven't yet read Robin Wood's book - I've had the deck for several years, didn't care for it at all, but then this week decided to reconsider it and was/am quite amazed by the impact it has had upon me!

One of the first cards I drew was the Hierophant & my initial thought was of sympathy for what I percieved to be a lost & lonely man; someone whose sacred rituals have become routine & lost their magic, but he feels quite trapped, depressed & disconnected from life, divinity & magic.

The 2 acolytes are beginning their own unique journeys - no two paths are the same, despite surface similarities.

In the 9 of Cups I see the same man, but he made different choices. His violet robe indicates his connection to the spiritual world, but he has followed his own unique path & been true to his higher self, his heart, his soul.

If the Hierophant casts off his elaborate, well-constructed yet ultimately artificial garments then he'll be happier & closer to God.

I think an analogy could be made to the religious beliefs you might be brought up with - they might not mean as much as the spiritual experiences you have yourself.
Its quite possible - I have seen it happen -a child could be brought up in a pagan community and choose to embrace Christianity & have very good & valid reasons for their choice.

I don't want to go off track, but I think the Hierophant is representing the cultural belief systems into which we are born and how we choose to embrace or dismiss them & discover our own - perhaps a lifetime exploration.
Top   #36



Tarot Cards & Reviews          Free Tarot Readings           What's New           Tarot Card Meanings
Aeclectic Tarot Forum Links
· Tarot
· Tarot Special Interest
· Beyond Tarot
· Forum Library

Aeclectic Tarot Categories
· Angel Decks
· Dark & Gothic Decks
· Goddess Decks
· Fairy Decks
· Doreen Virtue Decks
· Beginner Decks
· Cat Decks
· Pagan & Wiccan Decks
· Ancient Egyptian Decks
· Celtic Decks
· Lenormand Decks
· Rider-Waite Decks
· Marseilles Decks
· Thoth Decks
· Oracle Decks
· List All Decks
· Popular Tarot Decks
· Available Decks
· Tarot Books
· What's New

Copyright © 1996 - 2020 Aeclectic Tarot. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy. Contact us.