The Hermit you know is I think one of the most underated cards in the deck; in fact in many of the decks it simply shows an elderly figure, slightly bowed, usually carrying a lamp and holding on to a staff, or a stick. One of my favourite images is the Hermit in a deck called the Legacy of the Divine, where he is shown as young and strong, holding a wand with a glowing quartz crystal....the colours are muted, there are rugged rocks and mountains, and it seems to me anyway, that those mountains contain life forms - birds, wolves...trees, streams - and its seems as if the Hermit sort of grows out of the rocks - it is hard to know where he ends and the rocks or earth begin...
The Hermit in tarot, like the name suggests, is alone..... there can be several meanings of this card, and it depends on the spread, the person you are reading for, even the deck - some of the traditional historical linked meanings to this card vary from seeking knowledge, a need to retreat or to be "alone"; to seek find an experienced voice or expert....at times yes, it can mean feeling "lonely" and maybe seeking someone to share your path with, and sometimes, yes the card makes me think of Merlin.
So many meanings for one card......
Maybe it calls to me today as so far its been really noisy. The postman dropping things through the door, the dogs have barked at just about everything, and even the hum of the computer is driving me nuts. I long for quietness and positive solitude, and yet am often alone during the day anway. But you know you don't always have to be on your own to feel "alone". Odd that isnt it. You can be "with" someone" but alone. You can be in a relationship at home, and yet sometimes feel even more lonely than when you were by yourself. Alone is not always the same as lonely.
It is possible though to be alone and live positively. One of my happiest weeks was when I went stay at a log cabin in anglesea, with Jackory. We rarely saw the people in the farm house. There was a t.v. but you know I hardly put it on. The only other noises were the log fire crackling, and the birds outside. I took some some tapistry work to sew, some books, and I had Jackory for company. The only other noise maybe was when he had a drink! - It was November, so yes it rained and some days and nights were colder than others. The front of the cabin was mostly glass, so it was lovely to sit there watching the dawn come, or the dusk gradually fall. The sofa converted to a bed, so often in the evenings me and Jackory would nestle under the duvet, with just a lamp and the fire for lights. It was so simple, so delicious. I took my mobile phone but I have to admit, had it switched off 90 per cent of the time.
The other delicious thing about it was food. I kept to simple things, fruit, veg; most days I made vegetable soup.... eggs, toast.... that sort of thing. I hardly felt the need like I do here in the town, to grab the nearest chocolate bar.... and surprisingly I drank more water too than tea or coffee.
There was a connection I felt with the land around me. Not a strong one, I admit, but a growing connection, a sort of oneness with the earth - an echo of the stronger connection I felt as a child, when I'd often play in the fields near my home, on my own (not a good thing to do these days though!) - I'd roll down the hills feeling the earth beneath me, I'd watch the insects go about their business managing huge stems of grass, dragging small grains of food with them; watch the beetle scurry by; hear the birds call, and even the cows munching their grass; all these noises seemed calming, gentle...
Its a reconnection with earth energy really that I'm on about. We come from Father God, but also Mother Earth. It is said that there is a connection between every living thing. Shamans belivieve that rocks, streams, trees, have a spirit. That they are living energies, as are the earth. That all things are connected. They talk about all things having a "mother" spirit who takes care of them (for example, dogs have their "Mother Dog" ....
Maybe the Hermit carries his light because he/she is looking for the connection - in other words, seeking to reconnect, with the earth, with the flow of nature, and with themselves, their inner being. Interesting that in all of the decks I've come across this figure is a man. I wonder why? There are female figures in tarot. But this one is a man.
And why is he often old looking? Experience of life weighing him down? Is the lamp just a symbol of his youthful energies which he no longer holds within him? Or is it a symbol of his experience? Is he representative of Father Time maybe? Is he even looking, as a father guardian maybe, for someone that is lost?
One thing is certain. He is out of the way of noise. The noise of the tv, the computer, of the postman knocking, of cars starting their engines, of the hub of electricity of this that and the other.
Maybe the key to this is the silence. Of re-connection. Of linking into the energy that is around you (like the Hermit in the Lagacy of the Divine). Of calling to your Grandfathers, to your spirit guides and Angels to help you as you journey on. Maybe its to do with finding your own happiness, strength and peace. Maybe its a message that we shouldn't look to someone to make our life happy, that we have to make it happy for ourselves. Yes, the Hermits a strange figure. A stranger, even maybe. Don't be a stranger to yourself, seek the connection within and without, to journey with the light of your path inside you; it will reflect out and guide you with truth and simplicity.
With love, light, peace, strength and happiness,
Gina and Jackoryx