The Fool's Journey (ON HOLD)

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avatar Idelac
Level 16 : Journeyman Warrior
18
DISCLAIMER: I do not own the Persona franchise, nor do I not own the images used. The Persona franchise belongs to Atlus, and the images used belong to the SMT wiki.

In the Persona series, the story the protagonist follows is similar to the Fool's Journey, a metaphor for the journey through life: The Fool embarks on a journey to overcome Death and take the World.

This blog will occasionally updated with one new tarot card added. Each entry will contain a four-line poem, what each card depicts, and the meaning behind each card's illustration. Each update will take around one to three days.

Just know that the cards used may sometimes appear completely different from how they actually look, and you might read a totally different depiction than the one the card represents.

There may be things I might have missed or gotten wrong, so if you notice anything wrong, please let me know. Thanks!

Fool-0
The Fool (0)
From the beginning, there was nothing...

Yet, the world was born...

Empty, yet full of potential...

Such is the journey of the Fool...

The Fool is depicted as a young man standing near the edge of a cliff, carrying a bag containing all of his essentials, with a dog accompanying his side. Unaware of the danger that awaits him, he plunges into the crevice and begins the journey.

The Fool's bag contains his essentials, which are not limited to items, but also skills. However, this does not necessarily mean he has everything he can take with him. Despite that, he throws himself into a journey and uses everything he has to the best of their ability.
The dog by his side symbolizes the Fool's loyalty and protection, the forces that encourage him to keep charging onward and learn the lessons ahead.
The Fool is the only card with the number 0. This shows that the Fool has infinite potential within him— It's how he uses that potential will determine his fate. Hence, the third line, "Empty, yet full of potential."

The Fool represents beginnings, innocence, spontaneity, and a free spirit. In tarot readings, it generally means a new adventure is about to begin. You may not know what you're getting yourself into, or what you may have to deal with, but even so, you must trust your heart, and stand up against all the threats that come your way.

When reversed, the Fool represents holding back, recklessness, and risk taking. The Reverse Fool has two meanings. One means that you are afraid to immerse yourself in the adventure that awaits, and you feel like you are not yet ready to tackle the trials ahead. The other means that you are taking too many risks and acting recklessly. You may be trying to live freely, but your actions drag others down with you.

Magician-0
The Magician (I)
Life is naught but a cruel journey...

None can say how many times one may fall...

Yet, to always stand on one's feet is true might...

For 'tis the power the Magician wields...

The Magician is depicted holding an ember with the infinity symbol over his head. While not seen in the card above, the Magician is normally seen near a table with symbols of the Minor Tarot suits on it— A cup, a coin, a sword, and a wand. Each symbol represents the four basic elements: Water, earth, fire, and air.

The ember held by the Magician symbolizes the manifestations that can emerge from his power. Though not shown in the card above, the Magician is usually seen raising one arm upward and pointing the other arm toward the ground. This represents the connection between the spiritual and material realms, and the Magician uses this connection to let his manifestations flow.
The Magician's manifestations may not always come out as expected, which is why the second line is "None can say how many times one may fall." However, the Magician never gives up on the manifestations he envisions, which makes up the third line "Yet, to always stand on one's feet is true might."

The Magician represents manifestation, resourcefulness, power, and inspired action. In tarot readings, it means that ideas within your mind are close to being manifested into reality. Establishing a clear vision of what you want to manifest and why you want to do so is a crucial step towards this. Afterward, focusing on what drives you onward will slowly but surely bring your goal to fruition.

When reversed, the Magician represents manipulation, poor planning, and untapped talents. You might know what you want to manifest, but you aren't taking action yet, due to your uncertainty of if you have everything you need and/or unsurety of how to accomplish it.

Priestess-0
The High Priestess (II)
Each step brings one closer to his goal...

Though one may think he wields great power...

There may be yet untapped potential within...

For the truth will always be revealed to the Priestess...

The Priestess (Also known as the High Priestess) is depicted as an old woman holding an open book (Though not seen in the card above). A veil not seen in the card above represents the separate conscious and unconscious realms, and keeps commoners out of the temple she stands in.

Despite both being black in the card above, one pillar is actually white. The black and white colors symbolize duality— Masculine and feminine, light and dark, etc.. Only those who know of and have accepted duality are able to enter the temple.

The Priestess represents intuition, sacred knowledge, and the subconscious mind. In tarot readings, the Priestess is a symbol of hidden knowledge. When the Priestess appears, it means the veil between you and the underworld is thin, which is your golden opportunity to trust your intuition. As stated before, the Priestess is a symbol of hidden knowledge. This makes up the third line "There may be yet untapped potential within."

When reversed, the Priestess represents secrets, withdrawal, and silence. You might not fully trust your intuition, which makes you deny your ability to receive information from your intuition. You may also be fearful of what others may think of your intuitive capabilities. However, know that the Priestess fully focuses on the self, and not others. Even if just for a moment, put yourself at the center of your mind, and focus on your intuition.

Empress-0
The Empress (III)
In spite of the cruelties of the world...

Should several storms come, calm comes in between...

One must know when to rest and find peace...

Such is a crucial ability that of the Empress...

The Empress is depicted as a beautiful pregnant woman radiating a peaceful aura, causing plants to bloom around her. Though hidden as a silhouette, she wears a robe patterned with pomegranates, the fruit of fertility.

The crown the Empress wears may appear to be an ordinary crown, but it is actually composed of twelve stars, showing her connection with the mystical realm and the cycles of the natural world (Such as the twelve months of the year).
The plants surrounding the Empress represent Mother Nature and life itself. She draws her sense of peace from the blooming plants around her and is rejuvenated by nature's energies.

The Empress represents femininity, beauty, nature, nurturing, and abundance. In tarot readings, the Empress is a call to bring out your feminine side, even if you're male. When this card appears, connect with your five senses— sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste— And create beauty in your life by engaging in multiple activities. This is a great opportunity to find a new hobby that will bring out your senses more than normal. The Empress is normally a symbol of peace and quiet, which creates the second and third lines.

When reversed, the Empress represents a creative block and dependence on others. You may feel unable to "birth" a new idea or express yourself creatively, or you might rely on others too much to find the peace that makes up the Empress. Similar to the Magician's manifestations, the Empress may not be able to find the peace she looks for immediately, but she keeps searching in spite of all the suffering she has endured. Keep pushing onward, and the peace you seek will surely be yours.

Emperor-0
The Emperor (IV)
Some may desire to control all around them...

Yet this desire may lead to myriad calamities...

Regardless, relenting is wholly inevitable...

Only the Emperor can overcome this inner turmoil...


The Emperor is depicted as a king sitting on a throne, holding an ankh in his right hand and an orb in his left. Underneath his robes is a suit of armor, protecting him from any and all threats. Though not seen in the card above, his throne is adorned with the heads of four rams.

The Emperor's robe symbolizes his power, passion, and energy for life. Despite being invisible in the card above, the Emperor sports a long white beard, which represents his age-old wisdom and experience.
The ankh in his right hand is the Egyptian symbol of life, and the orb in his left hand is representative of the world he rules over. All of these show that the Emperor is an authority figure who demands to be heard.

The Emperor represents authority, establishment, and structure. In tarot readings, the Emperor shows that you may take up a father figure role or a leader role, regardless of your gender. Status, power, and recognition are essential to both, so be sure to establish these traits when you take up these roles of authority. Command and direct others onto what is right, and rule with a firm but fair hand. Your subjects will surely repay your leadership with the loyalty and respect you deserve.

When reversed, the Emperor represents domination, excessive control, lack of discipline, and inflexibility. The Reverse Emperor generally means the authority given to you has gone to your head, and you attempt to control any and all things that come your way. You might even be trying too hard to accomplish this; some aspects in life are just not controllable. Accepting that is critical towards becoming a great leader. It is fine to control things, just don't control them too harshly, and treat them with respect, even if you're above them. In fact, the first three lines are based off of the Reverse Emperor.

Hierophant-0
The Hierophant (V)
To understand the truths of this world is a blessing indeed...

Submission shall guide one on this path to enlightenment...

Therefore, always hunger to know more...

For this knowledge is what creates the Hierophant...

The Hierophant is depicted as a pope sitting between two pillars of a sacred temple (Though different from the one the Priestess sits in). He wears three robes: red, blue, and white, and a three-tiered crown. Though not seen in the card above, he holds the Papal Cross in his left hand. He points two fingers towards Heaven and two fingers towards Earth in his right hand. Two followers kneel before him, hungering for the Hierophant's knowledge.

The red, blue, and white robes the Hierophant wears represent the three worlds he rules over: The conscious, sub-conscious, and super-conscious. The three-tiered crown also represents this.
The Papal Cross in his left hand is a triple scepter that signifies his religious status. The Hierophant is considered to be the Pope in other tarot decks, and the Papal Cross is something popes often wield.

The Hierophant represents spiritual wisdom, religious beliefs, conformity, tradition, and institutions. In tarot readings, the Hierophant is a sign that before you make your own choices, you need to learn from a reliable source. Work with a teacher, mentor, or guide to teach you about spiritual beliefs. Mastering this field of study may lead you to take on a role of a teacher to others. A second outcome of this lesson is that you may end up following a very old tradition, or one that has been neglected for a long time.

When reversed, the Hierophant represents personal beliefs, freedom, and challenging the status quo. Unlike the other Reverse Arcana, this is the first reversed card that doesn't have any negative effect. The Reverse Hierophant shows that you are your own teacher. You no longer need external approval to succeed, and are ready to stick to your own path, even if it means going against tradition. You see the world differently now, and you now seek out opportunities to rebel and reclaim your personal power. If you have felt like you have lost your sense of freedom, this is the time to make your own rules and keep forging your own path.

Lovers-0
The Lovers (VI)
No matter one's resolve...

A choice cannot be avoided...

Choose between the right or the simple...

And the Lovers' choice shall live forevermore...

The Lovers depicts a man watching over a mature, serious woman and a young, beautiful woman, with an angel watching overhead. Both women stand beneath an apple tree, reminiscent to the one of forbidden fruit in Eden.

The man watching over two women represents the inevitability of making a major choice one way or another. Should the man choose wisely, he will find himself in a lasting, meaningful relationship, but if chosen wrongly, he may soon find himself unsatisfied with the path he chose. This creates the second and third lines.
As stated before, the women stand underneath an apple tree, like the tree of forbidden fruit in Eden. However, the original card actually shows the entirety of Eden, instead of just the tree. Additionally, a serpent can be seen slithering up the tree in the original card, which represents the temptations one may face on the path of love.

The Lovers represent love, harmony, relationships, alignment of values, and choices. In tarot cards, the Lovers mean that you have or will have a beautiful, soul-honoring connection with a love one. This is normally meant in a romantic way, but this can also be true in a close friendship or family bond. Additionally, given that this card comes after the Hierophant, this card calls on you to establish your beliefs, as well as your values. But when you get down to it, the Lovers are all about choices. To make good choices, you need to be clear with your beliefs and values. Not all decisions will be easy, but that's just life. Keep pushing onward, keep those beliefs and values close to your heart, and you can make any decision.

When reversed, the Lovers represent self-love, disharmony, imbalance, and misalignment of views. You might not have the same views as someone you love, and communication between the two of you may be difficult. When this happens, remember the reason why this person is in your life. If you love this person unconditionally, then know this moment will pass and all you can do is bring love and compassion to the situation. But sometimes, you may realize it's simply because the two of you have grown apart and it's time to move on. If you think this, ask yourself if all you've been doing is shooting arguments and disrespect back and forth, then it could be time to let go.

Chariot-0
The Chariot (VII)
To keep fighting is power indeed...

Though the path is long, victory lies at the end...

Stay true to the path desired...

And ride the Chariot into freedom...
The Chariot is depicted as a warrior riding a chariot made up of two differently-colored sphinxes. Though not seen in the card above, he wears armor decorated with crescent moons, a tunic with a square, and other alchemical symbols. The sphinxes are generally depicted as facing in opposite directions, but the charioteer uses sheer willpower to steer the chariot wherever he pleases.

The charioteer himself represents many things. The crescent moons decorating his armor represents what is coming into being. His tunic's square represents his strength of will, and his alchemical symbols represent spiritual transformation. Despite not being in the card above, he wears a laurel and crown of stars, both representing victory, success, and spiritual evolution.
The sphinxes, being black and white, represent duality, much like the pillars of the temple the Priestess stands in. They represent positivity and negativity, and at times, opposing forces.

The Chariot represents control, willpower, success, action, and determination. In tarot readings, the Chariot means you've learned how to make decisions in alignment with your values with the Lovers. Now, you're free to take action on those decisions. Channel your inner power with a fierce dedication to bring them to fruition. Applying discipline, commitment, and willpower will help you succeed in this trial. This is what basically makes the entirety of the Chariot's poem.

When reversed, the Chariot represents self-discipline, opposition, and lack of direction. You might have lost your motivation and no longer feel as committed as you used to when you started. When this happens, ask yourself: Is there a deeper reason things have gotten harder? What lessons have I not learned? At times, the Reverse Chariot warns you that you're letting obstacles get in the way as things get way too hard. If this happens, stop for a brief moment and reflect on why you want to achieve this goal. Will you let what others think of you sway you or give up as soon as things begin to become difficult? Or will you follow through on your commitment? The choice is yours.

Justice-0
Justice (VIII)
What choices one makes determines one's life...

To know between right and wrong is critical...

Embrace the truth hidden behind the fog of the world...

For only true Justice will govern the universe...

Justice is depicted as a woman holding a sword and a scale. Though not seen in the card above, she sits in front of a loosely-hung purple veil and in between two pillars, similar to the Priestess and Hierophant. Justice is normally card XI in tarot decks, however, as the Rider-Waite-Smith deck is being used, Justice is card VIII.

The woman sitting in front of the purple veil represents compassion, and the pillars represent balance, law, and nature. The sword in her right hand shows the logical, well-ordered mindset to dispense justice. The sword points upward, representing a firm and final decision, and the double-edged blade signifies that we must be responsible for our actions. The scale in her left hand shows that she must balance that logic and is a symbol of impartiality.

Justice represents justice (Of course), fairness, truth, cause, effort, and law. In tarot meanings, Justice means you are being called to account for the actions you have committed, and will be judged accordingly. If you have remained on the noble path, then you have nothing to fear. However, if you have gone rogue, you will be called out and made to own up to your actions. However, Justice is not as black and white as it seems. Understanding and compassion come with Justice, and even though you have done something you may regret, this card suggests that you will be treated fairly and without bias. Be prepared to take responsibility for your actions.

When reversed, Justice represents unfairness, lack of accountability, and dishonesty. Reversed Justice indicates that deep down, you know you've done something morally wrong. Others might not know of it yet, so you have a choice: Either hide your crimes and hope nobody finds out, or own up to what you've done and take focused action to resolve the situation. Reversed Justice may also indicate that you are not willing to bite the bullet and trying to shift the blame onto someone else. Doing this is something that you must put a stop to immediately, as this will only lead to more and more guilt down the line.

Hermit-0
The Hermit (IX)
Even when time is of the utmost importance...

Resting from one's objective can be very rewarding...

When lost, look around for a moment...

And find the truth the Hermit holds...


The Hermit is depicted as an old man standing on a mountain peak and holding up a lantern in his right hand, which contains a six-pointed star inside. Though not visible, the Hermit holds a long staff. As the Hermit walks his path, the lantern lights his way— But instead of illuminating his full journey, it only illuminates a few steps forward. He must step forward, knowing that not everything will be revealed at once.

Though not seen in the card above, there is a snow-capped range, which represents the Hermit's spiritual mastery, growth, and accomplishment. The six-pointed star in his lantern is the Seal of Solomon, a symbol of wisdom. The staff in the Hermit's left hand represents the Hermit's power and authority, which he uses to balance and guide himself.

The Hermit represents soul-searching, introspection, being alone, and inner guidance. In tarot readings, the Hermit means that you are taking a break from your normal routine and drawing attention and energy inward to find the answers you seek, deep within your soul. Know that the most profound sense of truth and knowledge is within your own soul, and only you and you alone can find that truth. If you still desire to walk this path with those who walk it with you, the Hermit calls on you to temporarily seclude yourself from them and undertake this trial alone, then return to your companions and continue together.

When reversed, the Hermit represents isolation, loneliness, and withdrawal. The Reverse Hermit means two things: You are not taking enough time for personal reflection, or you are taking too much. When the Reverse Hermit appears, set aside some more time to meditate and reflect. Dealing with your normal routine too much may cause you to deviate from what you are trying to meditate upon. On the flipside, you might be taking isolation too far, and are becoming an actual hermit. Don't underestimate the connections you have to people, and be mindful of their needs. You don't want to become so absorbed with yourself you shut out your family and friends— This will cause you to slowly but surely lose the bonds you've forged and become alone once again.

Fortune-0
Wheel of Fortune (X)
Misfortune may strike a person relentlessly...

But know that misery and suffering does not last forever...

When one's luck shifts, cherish it while it lasts...

For this is the blessing of Fortune...

The Wheel of Fortune (Or Fortune) is depicted as a giant wheel, with two figures on the outer edges. Though not seen in the card above, there are four Hebrew letters— YHVH (Yod Heh Vau Heh). There are also the letters TORA inscribed on the wheel as well.

The Hebrew letters YHVH are the unpronounceable letters of the Hebrew translation of God. The letters TORA are also thought to be translated into Torah, meaning law, or TAROT, or even ROTA, which is Latin for wheel. The snake on the bottom of the wheel represents the Typhon, the Egyptian god of evil. The demon on the top of the wheel represents Anubis, the Egyptian god who welcomes souls into the underworld.

Fortune represents good luck, karma, life cycles, destiny, and turning points. In tarot readings, Fortune reminds you that life is always changing. This means your luck may turn around if you're going through tough times. Similarly, if things are going well, Fortune means that things might go back to normal soon. Furthermore, Fortune is often associated with the expression "What goes around comes around." Be kind and loving to others, and they will do the same. On the other hand, if you destroy others, know that your life will be destroyed as well at some point. Finally, Fortune can show a critical turning point in your life. You'll get opportunities you didn't even know existed. Take these chances while you can, and take a new direction in life.

When reversed, Fortune represents bad luck, resistance to change, and breaking cycles. Your luck may take a turn for the worst, and you may experience unexpected change or negative forces at play, leaving you helpless. When this happens, you have a choice: Do nothing and wait for things to blow over, or take things into your own hands and try to improve the situation. If you take the latter choice, you'll have taken an opportunity to take back control of your destiny and put your life on track once again.

Strength-0
Strength (XI)
Many shall run from the beast of terror...

Under suffering and torment will many break...

Yet, few will stand and never falter...

Keep moving, and Strength of heart shall be made manifest...

Strength is depicted as a young woman watching over a lion. Though it is known for its ferociousness, the woman has tamed it with her calming, loving energy. She doesn't use force or coercion, she channels her inner strength to subdue and subtly control the lion. Similarly to the Magician, the infinity symbol is visible over her head.

The woman that is depicted as Strength wears a white robe, which shows her purity of spirit. The crown of flowers she wears represents the fullest, most beautiful expression of nature. The lion symbolizes raw passion and desire, and in taming it, the woman demonstrates that animal instinct and raw passion can be expressed positively when inner strength is applied. Similarly to the Magician, the infinity symbol represents the woman's infinite potential.

Strength represents strength (Of course), courage, persuasion, influence, and compassion. In tarot readings, Strength means you are fueled by your inner strength, personal power, strong will, and determination. Your strength gives you the confidence to overcome countless obstacles. Even if you're scared, do it anyway. If you're burnt out or stressed, the Strength card calls on you to find the power within and persevere. Furthermore, Strength calls on you to "tame" your instincts and gut feelings, and act on them properly. It's fine for malicious feelings like anger and hate to arise, it's what you do with them that makes them all the while. On a completely unrelated note, Strength is very similar to the Chariot— However, the Chariot deals with outer strength and will, while Strength deals with inner strength and spirit.

When reversed, Strength represents inner strength, self-doubt, low energy, and raw emotion. Reversed Strength has two meanings: One, it might indicate you're depleted of your self-confidence. When this happens, ask yourself: "How can I restore my inner strength?" A simple solution to this is to not be so hard on yourself. You might have experienced a setback in life, and you might be demoralized. Know that if you quit, you'll never achieve what you set out to do. The other meaning is that you're prone to explosive behavior, and you might be lashing out at others and might end up doing something you'll regret. The key is not to suppress the power that's running wild within you, but to accept it's a part of yourself and learn how to control it.

Hanged Man
The Hanged Man (XII)
To progress, stopping may be required...

To that end, one must remember the path taken...

Therefore, take the lessons learned to heart...

For the Hanged Man will be there to bear one's sins...

The Hanged Man is depicted as a man suspended from a cross made of living wood. He hangs upside down, viewing the world from a completely different perspective, seemingly out of his own free will. His right foot is bound to the cross, but his left is free, bent at the knee and tucked behind his left leg. His arms are bent, with hands behind his back, forming an inverted triangle.

The halo around the Hanged Man's head represents new insight, awareness, and enlightenment. Though seen as a silhouette, the Hanged Man wears red pants, symbolizing human passion and the physical body. He also wears a blue vest, which represents knowledge.

The Hanged Man represents pause, surrender, letting go, and new perspectives. In tarot readings, the Hanged Man reminds you that you may have to put everything on hold before you take the next step. Surrender to the chance to pause and view it as a chance to reassess and reevaluate where you are right now. Something new will emerge, and you won't be able to see it unless you let it happen— That is, you won't be able to see it unless you let everything stop for a moment.

When reversed, the Hanged Man represents delays, resistance, stalling, and indecision. The Reversed Hanged Man shows that you're resisting the pause and surrender that the Hanged Man brings. You might be filling your day-to-day life with tasks, projects, and other things just to distract yourself from what you should really be doing. Another (And positive) interpretation of the Reverse Hanged Man is that after putting everything on hold, you can continue to move forward with a new perspective and a renewed sense of energy. You might find events line up with more ease and flow, and you're ready to go on this path once again.

https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/megamitensei/images/d/df/Death-0.png/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/340?cb=20160404202413
Death (XIII)
One's life is not free from change...

No matter how long it takes, change always comes...

Though one's old life will eventually succumb...

The door of Death will always give birth to another...

Death is depicted as a skeleton dressed in black armor, riding a white horse, though only its skull is visible. It carries a black flag decorated with a white, five-petal rose. A royal figure is dead on the floor, while a young woman, child, and bishop plead in vain for Death to spare it, only for it to kill them in the end.

The skeleton that represents Death symbolizes the dead body of a human, long after its soul has abandoned it. The skeleton's black armor represents invincibility and that death will come, no matter what. Its dark armor is that of mourning and mystery, while the white horse the skeleton rides is that of strength and power. The white rose on the black flag represents beauty, purification, and the number five, which represents change. The door shown in the card above is the very door souls pass through after their lives, and doing this gives birth to more lives.

Death represents endings, change, transformation, and transition. Death is probably the most misunderstood card in tarot decks, but it's not as bad as it might seem— You won't keel over anytime soon. In tarot readings, Death means that a major phase in your life is ending, and you're entering another phase that is far more substantial than the one you went through. It will be painful to let go of the past, but this is an important step in renewing and transforming yourself.

When reversed, Death represents resistance to change, personal transformation, and inner purging. Reverse Death shows that you're about to undergo a substantial change, but you're resisting it. You might be reluctant to let go and face the pain that comes with it. Learn to embrace change rather than resist it, and you'll be surrounded with so many new possibilities. After all, if you dwell on the past, you'll never got anywhere, right?

Tarot
???
Your fate will soon be determined...

Recall the path you have taken...

And remember the lessons you have learned...

For the next step into your foray awaits...

TBD - Trying to solve an image problem
CreditSMT Wiki for the images, ATLUS for owning the Persona franchise
Tags

2
09/24/2020 1:48 am
Level 41 : Master Enderdragon
The FaiyaBLAST
Gosh this is so deep and well written, this teaches me more than when I went to an actual tarot reader XD
2
09/24/2020 12:10 pm
Level 16 : Journeyman Warrior
Idelac
Thanks! ^_^
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