This Key is full of meaning for an occultist. Its primary meaning is Reversal. This refers to the reversal of thought, of point of view held by those who know from that held by the unenlightened multitude. The adept realizes that his existence is dependent upon Cosmic Law. Another meaning of the card is Suspended Mind, which the Hindus name Samadhi, in which exalted mental state the aspirant reaches the Divine Consciousness of Pure Being. The letter Mem means Water or seas, and refers to Root Matter as do the crescents and upper garment. (See Key 2.)
The gallows is in the shape of the letter Tau (Key 21). Its twelve lopped branches are the twelve signs of the zodiac. The edging of the jacket, with the belt, form a cross and circle, symbolical of positive and negative modes of life-expression. The white hair and the halo about the head suggest that the Hanged Man is the embodiment of the ONE LIGHT. The entire figure represents a pendulum at rest. He is unmoved and immovable, because he realizes that no person ever thinks, moves or acts of himself, but simply expresses the thought, motion and action of the ONE IDENTITY.