Judgement Artwork Description
“I have said that this symbol is essentially invariable in all Tarot sets, or at least the variations do not alter its character [see “controversies and observations below]. The great angel is here encircled by clouds, but he blows his bannered trumpet, and the cross as usual is displayed on the banner. The dead are rising from their tombs—a woman on the right, a man on the left, and between them their child, whose back is turned. But in this card there are more than three who are restored. It should be noted that all the figures are one in the wonder, adoration and ecstasy expressed by their attitudes. It is the card which registers the accomplishment of the great work of transformation in answer to the summons of the supernal—a summons that is heard and answered from within.” 1
- Alternate Names: Rejuvenation, Aeon.
- Twenty: 20 Regeneration, Confrontation.
- Element: Water.
- Rune: Kano “Torch”.
- Crystal/Gem: Hawk’s Eye.
- Kabbalah: Shin “Tooth”.
- Astrological: Pluto.
- Astronomical: Orion.
Judgement Basic Meaning
Returning to old mishaps and confronting them. Transitioning into new things, transforming the self. Regenerating or restoring broken (and forgotten) things. Facing consequences, confronting fears, coming to terms with past failures. Revisitation of the past so that you may clear things up, to press onward to the future.
Judgement Controversies and Observations
“The form of this symbol is essentially invariable, even in the Etteilla set. An angel sounds his trumpet and the dead arise. Before rejecting the transparent interpretation of the symbolism which is conveyed by the name of the card and by the picture which it presents to the eye, we should feel very sure of our ground. On the surface, at least, it is and can be only the resurrection of father, mother and child. One commentator has suggested that esoterically it is the symbol of evolution—of which it carries none of the signs. Others say that it signifies renewal, which is obvious enough; that it is the triad of human life; that it is the ‘generative force of the earth… and eternal life’.” 1
“Meaning: Change of position, renewal, outcome.
Reversed: Pusillanimity, simplicity; also deliberation, decision, sentence.” 1
“Things coming back to haunt you; revisiting and taking responsibility for one’s actions (past or present); spiritual awakening; forgiveness; facing consequences; learning from experience; reaping what you have sown.” 2
“Basic Tarot Symbols: Angel, trumpets, graves with people rising from them, often water or an ocean.
Basic Tarot Meaning: With Fire as its ruling element, Judgement is about rebirth and resurrection. The idea of Judgement Day is that the dead rise, their sins are forgiven, and they move onto heaven. The Judgement card is similar in that it asks us to resurrect the past, forgive it, and let it go. There are wounds from the past that we never let heal, sins we’ve committed that we refuse to forgive, bad habits we haven’t the courage to lose. Judgement advises us to finally face these, recognize that the past is past, and put them to rest, absolutely and irrevocably.
The reader can tell the querent that they need to forgive or be forgiven, do something they’ve been putting off, or have the courage to finally end something that isn’t good for them. It is time to move on.
This is also a card of healing, quite literally from an accident or illness. It can indicate a time in the hospital, or a time of significant change.
Thirteen’s Observations: Judgement can be a hard card to read; it usually signals a change, one that involves leaving something old completely behind and stepping into something completely new. Like closing the door on an old job, and opening the door to a new and very different career. But it’s also about making a final decision, to take that plunge into the new career, to forgive your family, to leave an abusive spouse, to make a new life. To heal and renew.
It’s a very hard card to read, in part because it deals with very hard and final decisions. And it means facing something that most querents don’t want to face. This is not about Death, something ending whether you want it to or not, this is about deciding to make a change, to stop doing something that isn’t working and do something that will work. Which means that it’s really a card about courage, and about recognizing that you’re holding onto something that needs to be let go.
‘You can’t hide any longer,’ this card says, ‘all the coffins have opened, and all that you thought was buried is out in the open. Face what you have to face and lay it to rest so that you can move on. Make that decision. Change.'” 3
Axank’s Dream Recollection
January 16-17, 2012
Fragments of all sorts but no solid dream remembered.