The Moon (18)
“Do not fear to step into the unknown for where there is risk, there is also reward.” ~Lori Hard
The Rider-Waite deck depicts a great moon, showing its three phases as one, hovering in the sky flanked by two sturdy towers. Two bodies of clear water, a pool and the ocean, are separated by land. Leading from the water a path winds in the distance between the two towers. In the foreground a dog and wolf howl at the moon, while a lobster in the pool behind them crawls toward the bank.
Crayfish: The unconscious, primordial and primitive
Dog: Domesticated and tamed side of our nature
Wolf: Primitive and wild side of our nature
Moon (all three phases): Body, mind, and spirit
Water: Reflection, receptivity, the subconscious
Path (leading from water): Spiritual path emerging from the subconscious or emotion
Fear, Illusion, the Unknown, Imagination, Bewilderment
As the hour draws later the sky begins to darken, and the Fool’s path becomes less visible. Disorientated, he stumbles in bewilderment through the inky fog of darkness surrounding him. To the Fool the darkness is the unknown that causes his imagination to play tricks upon him. In the distance the cries of wolves paying homage to the moon call to the Fool, and he stops to listen. The Fool realizes he has two choices. He can join the creatures in their serenade or he can utilize the moon to help him find his path. Making his choice, he begins following the moonbeams reflecting from the water’s surface. Banishing his fear as mere illusion, he resumes his journey.
To learn how to confront our fears and anxieties, whether they be real or an illusion.
The Moon is a symbol of our psyches, which speaks to us through the inner language of imagination and dreams. This hidden aspect of ourselves sometimes leave us wandering in the dark, thus it is crucial to our inner development that we bring our shadows to light. By understanding our dark side we can emerge stronger and more confident in life.
In readings, the Moon often stands for the fears and anxieties we experience when we are confronted with uncertainties or the unknown. When foreign problems or unfamiliar situations arise that we do not fully understand, our feelings can become tenuous and confused. While dealing with such energies it is important to trust the light of our intuition to offer us the insights we need to find our path again.
This card can also represent the illusions and deceptions we create when we are unable or unwilling to see things clearly and in their true light. Sometimes in an effort to protect ourselves from a painful truth we will resort to fantasy, distortion, and a false picture of reality. Only after illuminating these dark corners of our lives can we experience the clarity of truth.