Danse Macabre The Hierophant

The Hierophant

It is better to endure suffering or abstention than to be in a position where you have to compromise yourself or your values.


The Hierophant, or the Pope, represents a link between ourselves and the divine. He also represents tradition, the orthodox, organised methods of nurturing spirituality.

Regardless of your religious background, the Hierophant represents the spirituality you were taught from childhood, the religious traditions which are your heritage. The darker side of this card can represent authoritarian control and domination of religious expression.

This card also stands for institutions and their values. The Hierophant is a symbol of the need to conform to rules or fixed situations. His appearance in a reading can show that you are struggling with a force that is not innovative, free-spirited or individual. Sometimes we need to follow a program or embrace tradition, other times, we need to trust ourselves.

This card indicates someone is conventional. They have a need to conform and be socially approved. They are dependent on society's thoughts, but at the same time they have the ability to build their own path if they believe it is the right way.

When reversed or otherwise ill-dignified:

The Hierophant represents the repressive aspects of a too rigid orthodoxy. He rules with an iron hand, and becomes inflexible. Forbids direct access to holy wisdom. Self-righteous morality. Persecutor. Skilled manipulator. Religious prejudice. Religious oppression.