XXI The World – The Dance of Life

XXI The World - The Dance of Life

The World card is the final trump in the Major Arcana and hence, because creation is cyclic, stands for completion of one cycle and the start of the next. There is cause for celebration here for sure… But sometimes The World card shows up on an ordinary day, when there is no grand sense of achievement or awareness of having complete some great work. What then?

Today is one of those days for me and the keyword that springs to mind today is ‘perspective’ – Sometimes the Tarot lovingly sends us The World card as a reminder to keep things in perspective and consider that every step we take is part of the sacred Dance of Life.

This is what A.E. Waite says about The World card in the Pictorial Key to the Tarot:

As this final message of the Major Trumps is unchanged–and indeed unchangeable–in respect of its design, it has been partly described already regarding its deeper sense. It represents also the perfection and end of the Cosmos, the secret which is within it, the rapture of the universe when it understands itself in God. It is further the state of the soul in the consciousness of Divine Vision, reflected from the self-knowing spirit. But these meanings are without prejudice to that which I have said concerning it on the material side.

It has more than one message on the macrocosmic side and is, for example, the state of the restored world when the law of manifestation shall have been carried to the highest degree of natural perfection. But it is perhaps more especially a story of the past, referring to that day when all was declared to be good, when the morning stars sang together and all the Sons of God shouted for joy. One of the worst explanations concerning it is that the figure symbolizes the Magus when he has reached the highest degree of initiation; another account says that it represents the absolute, which is ridiculous. The figure has been said to stand for Truth, which is, however, more properly allocated to the seventeenth card. Lastly, it has been called the Crown of the Magi.

The World dancer is surrounded by the four fixed signs in the Giant Rider Waite Tarot deck. These signs also represent the four evangelists, so here we have Taurus/Luke (bull), Aquarius/Matthew (man), Scorpio/John (eagle) and Leo/Mark (lion). The astrological correspondence is Saturn and the Elemental correspondence is Earth.

To some this World Dancer is Shekinah and to others she is Hekate. She could very well be both. Who is she to you? I like to see her as me, with my spirit fully embodied and integrated. To achieve this, I rely on the cosmic wisdom provided by the four helpers surrounding me in the picture… They teach me to know, to dare to will and to keep the silence.

In the Frideborg Tarot we see a black and white globe. The black and white colours are those of Saturn and symbolise transcending opposing forces/duality, as well as the limitations of time and space. The corresponding Archangels are Cassiel (Saturn), Uriel (Earth) and Metatron-Shekinah for the full embodiment of the divine.

From a Tarot Soul Coaching perspective, The World card should always make us pause and consider our part in the great choreography of life. Are we in step with the cosmic rhythm or are we dancing to the beat of a separate and fear-driven ‘little self’?

Everything in the universe has rhythm. Everything dances. - Maya Angelou Click To Tweet



Lisa Frideborg

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