We’ve come to the end of the journey. Or have we? The World card signifies the end of a life cycle – a major life cycle. But you know what happens with cycles, don’t you? They continue, or rather a new one begins. Look at the progression of the Major Arcana as a spiral; with each ending comes a new beginning at a new, higher level. All the lessons we’ve learned, all the experiences we’ve filed away are but staging areas. We’ll soon have the opportunity to demonstrate how much we’ve grown and assimilated as we resume the Fool’s Journey once more.
The World card is also known as the Universe or Cosmos. It is the card that encompasses everything in existence and all that will come into existence. The World card is a portal, egg-shaped, holding all the potential of the Universe within. It is the Creation; Genesis – the point where nothing becomes everything.
In the Western World, we consider the Universe to have begun when the Big Bang occurred. Other cultures have alternative ways to describe the beginning. The Aztecs believed that there was a whole clan of creators who made several attempts to create the perfect environment for the perfect being (humans). They were pleased with their fifth attempt at world-building, and their human creation was deemed to be just perfect. So perfect, in fact, that the gods had to cloud deliberately our vision and understanding of how the universe worked; we could not be allowed to know our origins.
Every country, culture, race, and society have their creation myths, which make fascinating reading. Western scientists believe they have the answers to creation apart from one or two very important ones: what was going on before the Big Bang and what caused it to happen?
The World card represents self-realization; when we finally come to understand our place in the world. It represents that time in life when we have reached a certain level of knowledge, i.e. that we know so much, and yet know nothing at all. It is about achievement, yes, but also about acceptance. We learn that there is no separation, that everything that exists is energy – bound together from the beginning through infinity.
On a mundane level, the World is about endings, reaching goals and personal milestones. It can represent a career change or break, or signify the end or beginning of a relationship. Very often, it means that the seeker is currently in a holding pattern until the next stage of the journey starts.
The World is often connected to the Hanged Man, who is also stuck in a holding pattern. However, the Hanged Man is at the mercy of external forces, whereas the World shows someone in control, happy, and at peace with where they are.
The World card incorporates four symbols from the Wheel of Fortune: Leo, Taurus, Aquarius and Scorpio. The figure, often a woman, mirrors the pose of the Hanged Man, except now it is upright. The oval laurel wreath around her is thought to symbolize the egg of creation — a story of the beginning of time, which is incorporated into many cultural beliefs.
The figure holds two wands to symbolize balance, and above her, at the top of the wreath is a red ribbon that forms a lemniscate — the symbol of infinity.
Interpretations in Various Areas of Life
A new job, promotion, or change of direction is on the horizon. You may be feeling impatient to get going, but take this time to prepare yourself for the next stage of your career.
For those coming to the end of their working life, retirement beckons. A new adventure is about to begin.
If you are unhappy with your work, the appearance of this card is a nudge for you to take action to change it up for the better. It’s not going to happen by itself — you have to put the wheels in motion.
For all, there is a possibility that the next stage will involve international travel or some global opportunity.
You reach an important milestone in your relationship. A shift is about to take place. You may decide to consolidate your love by getting married. On the other hand, you may now decide that it has run its course and choose to end your involvement amicably. If you are single and looking for a partner, then your social media single status may be changing to “in a relationship” very soon. The World card can also represent the start of a long-distance relationship.
The World is a good card to receive in connection with a financial reading. It reminds you that money is a form of energy and that you can tap into this energy stream when you want.
Multiple and passive income sources could make themselves available to you. Global investment opportunities are ripe for the plucking.
Things are good on the health front when the World appears. You feel fitter and able to increase your exercise regime. If you are currently unwell, expect an improvement. Serious illnesses may be in remission.
The World card tells you that it is a good idea to look at yourself as a whole entity. Therefore, a holistic consultation could be worth your consideration.
Psychologist, Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs puts self-actualization at the top of his pyramid of humankind’s personal evolution. He thought that only one in 100 people reached this stage of fulfillment through “peak experiences”.
In a spiritual reading, know that you have reached an important level of your development. You have gained understanding and clarity about who you are. A veil is lifted, and you can stretch your mind to encompass new concepts. You begin to realize that separation is an illusion and feel the need to explore new spiritual pathways.
The next stage of your journey is about to begin.