The Tower Reversed Tarot Card Meaning

Ah. The Tower. It certainly signals a powerful shake-up that will bring down structures that the querent thought were stable...but really weren't. And there in lies the trick of the Tower. With that flash of lightning - the insight that illuminates a dark landscape - the truth is revealed. What seemed to be stable is not, and comes crashing down. All that is left is the bare, harsh truth on which something more stable and real can now be built. But the devastation remains. However, what about Reversed?

1) Opposite: The easiest opposite is that there is no shake-up. No flash of lightning, no destruction. The Tower remains standing, the lies remain in place, the truth remains hidden. The querent may breathe out a sigh of relief -he's gotten off easy. But that's not necessarily a good thing.

The message of the Tower is "The Emperor has no clothes!" but the reversed Tower, in this case, indicates that the querent doesn't want to hear that, refuses to hear it, refuses to believe it. And lucky for him, no one is going to say it. So everyone maintains the lies, and the status quo goes on.

2) Blocked: The energy of the Tower is in that lightning flash, the energy of illumination and destruction. Very like in the opposite interpretation, the blocked interpretation suggests that things will remain in the dark and standing. The difference is that there is a desire for the truth to come out. However, someone or something is keeping the words ("The Emperor has no clothes!") from being said. Someone or something is keeping the Tower of lies safe from revelation and destruction. Unblock that energy, and the truth will come out.

3) Upside-down: In the Rider-Waite deck, the Tower is one of the few major arcana cards which places the viewer in the middle of the action. It's like a frame of film, a frozen moment in time as the tower is struck by that bolt and folk go flying. Reverse it and it's almost as if the film is being shown backwards. The people seem to be falling back into their windows, the crown (emblematic of arrogance, of the tower proclaiming itself king and on par with heaven) is shooting a bolt into the heavens instead of vice-versa, and the foundation reigns supreme (as compared to the crown on top).

This is very backwards indeed. Reversed, the Tower proclaims that its foundation is solid--almost like it's "mooning" everyone. The crown mocks heaven, and the false builders who should be tossed out find their way back in. Not only are the lies not going to be revealed, but the liars are going to get away with worse. They will tell more lies - lies which will be believed over the truth (the crown throwing back the lightning bolt at heaven!). They are protected by the rocky foundation which now crowns them, and there is no throwing them out.

The reversed Tower is the card a querent might get if they were trying to reveal the truth about a terrible scam or scandal, but the liars are too powerful and the lightning that should reveal all about them, that should bring them down, will be thrown at the querent instead. The truthful querent will be seen as the liar and, for the moment, they will suffer. They will not be believed and the Tower will remain standing.

Curious about this card when upright? Go to our Tarot Card Meanings.

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