Tarot, Psychology & DSM – “Hermit”

In my May 2020 weblog post I started this series on my current perceptions about the connection between certain Major Arcana cards, psychological challenges, and the DSM. I encourage you to review that post for my introduction to this series.

In the first post in this series we looked at the “IV Emperor” and possible diagnostic characteristics based on the DSM. A simple concept I presented is that his is a Yang or “masculine” energy card with an outward focus.

With “IX The Hermit” the focus is internal, more Yin or “feminine” energy, even though the character on the card is typically a male figure. This means that the Hermit’s mind, thoughts, and moods are buried within, rarely expressed without, and can be very difficult to reach.

Here are some typical challenges that can be associated with this type of presentation:

  • Antisocial
  • Reclusive
  • Paranoid
  • Narcissistic, schizoid, or obsessive/compulsive (OCD) tendencies

The fact that the Hermit is also the Virgo card astrologically certainly lends itself to OCD perfectionism or rituals.

Lately, I’ve revisited and increased my research into what is called “Attachment Theory” which appears in four basic styles: Secure, Anxious, Dismissive Avoidant, & Fearful Avoidant.

Some Hermit people can easily slip into the last two categories, Dismissive or Fearful Avoidant, due to a systemic fear of intimacy. Again, I will not go into why or analyze the inner workings of this challenge, but familiarizing oneself with this developmental theory based on early, precognitive attachment experiences is key to understanding more than half of the people in the world and why they slip into certain patterns.

To learn more about Attachment Theory, there are several books on the market, but my highest recommendation is to watch the very descriptive and compassionate videos from Thais Gibson’s Personal Development School on YouTube.

In essence, the greatest challenge represented in the Hermit is what I would call a “lost soul”, where the spiritual seeker has lost their way, or given up their soulful quest.

I look forward to sharing future posts highlighting other Major Arcana Tarot cards. Please feel free to ask questions or add comments, below.

If you are interested in learning more about this spiritual opportunity vs. challenge way of viewing Tarot cards, please purchase my recorded class, Psychological Challenges in Tarot’s Major Trumps.

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