The Hanged Man is one of the most mysterious cards in the tarot deck. It is simple, but complex. It attracts, but also disturbs. It contradicts itself in countless ways. The Hanged Man is unsettling because it symbolizes the action of paradox in our lives. A paradox is something that appears contradictory, and yet is true. The Hanged Man presents to us certain truths, but they are hidden in their opposites.
The main lesson of the Hanged Man is that we "control" by letting go - we "win" by surrendering. The Hanged Man also tells us that we can "move forward" by standing still. By suspending time, we can have all the time in the world.
The Hanged Man reminds us that the best approach to a problem is not always the most obvious. When we most want to force our will on someone, that is when we should release. When we most want to have our own way, that is when we should sacrifice. When we most want to act, that is when we should wait. The irony is that by making these contradictory moves, we find what we are looking for.
letting go:having an emotional release, accepting what is, surrendering to experience, ending the struggle, being vulnerable and open, giving up control
reversing:turning the world around, changing your mind, overturning old priorities, seeing from a new angle, upending the old order, doing an about-face
suspending action:pausing to reflect, feeling outside of time, taking time to just be, giving up urgency, living in the moment, waiting for the best opportunity
sacrificing:being a martyr, renouncing a claim, putting self-interest aside, going one step back to go two steps forward, giving up for a higher cause, putting others first