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The Hierophant — Spiritual Message of the Day

June 2, 2013

Hierophant KeysOn many versions of this card we see two crossed keys, one silver and the other gold. This symbol echoes the keys displayed on the Vatican Coat of Arms, which are a symbol of “binding and loosing,” which refers to the papal authority to declare what is forbidden and what is permitted.

There are, however, other ways to interpret these keys without locking them into meanings related to Christian iconography. One is that the teachings of religion should be keys to open the doors of both reality and spirituality. Another meaning we may infer is that both internal and external teachers have their own wisdom to impart; they each have their own domain and time. These two teachers are tradition (external), and our own intuitive connection to the Divine (internal). Comparing and evaluating the relative wisdom of these two teachers is of crucial importance on a spiritual path.

If you enjoy these words of spiritual advice from the cards, you will love my Tarot book, The Soul’s Journey: Finding Spiritual Messages in the Tarot




  1. I liked this idea of yours. I tend to think of them as Keys to the Kingdom (of God) and thus somewhat open-ended like the side of a key, rather than a nod to papal authority. Spirituality not being exclusive to the Catholic Church in reality.

    I did a three-year study of the Tarot of the Saints which has St. Peter on the Hierophant and thus came St. Peter’s keys and a montage I did of several depictions of the keys.

    • Oh, I certainly hope I did not give the impression that I associate religious or spiritual authority with the church (Catholic or otherwise). My reference to the papal keys was merely historical background as an introduction to my point. As I noted, there are “other ways to interpret these keys without locking them into meanings related to Christian iconography.”

  2. Ah sorry, no you didn’t give that impression, I got exactly what you meant.

    I was just reiterating that I thought regardless of how the Catholic church tends to lend the keys a papal authority, I myself (as you do) tend to think otherwise. The Church doesn’t seem to have wised up yet, hence my comment about exclusivity.

    Anyway, just blathering on as such things are of interest to me. There is something fascinating about the Church, perhaps it is simply because it winds around so much of human history? Probably so.

  3. voyance permalink

    Hi there! This post couldn’t be written any better! Going through this post reminds me of my previous roommate! He constantly kept preaching about this. I most certainly will send this post to him. Fairly certain he’ll have a good read. Thank you for sharing!

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