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The Tower Tarot Card Meaning (Destruction & Ignorance)

Updated January 7, 2023
The Tower Tarot Card Meaning (Destruction & Ignorance)

The Tower tarot card is the most challenging to select in a reading. The Tower imagery is as dire as its meaning.

When the Tower tarot card appears in a reading, expect crises. Earth-shattering changes are underway.

People who seek wisdom from the tarot dread the appearance of the Tower card in a reading. Yet tarot experts understand you don’t need to fear this card.

The Tower indicates drastic, sudden changes that challenge your security. Your expectations are dashed in an instant when the Tower appears.

The Tower is not all bleak; this card portends that your path opens so new growth can occur. The Tower brings transformation through a crisis.

The Tower Tarot Card
UprightDestruction, Crisis, Disillusionment
ReversedIgnorance, Resisting Change, Crisis Averted
Yes or NoNo
ArcanaMajor Arcana
Card Number16
ElementFire
Zodiac SignAries
StoneSpinel

Common Symbolism

The Tower tarot card imagery is the most disturbing of all the archetypes. Lightning strikes a prominent tower, destroying the roof. A crown tumbles from the top of the building, and flames consume the structure.

Powerful men jump from the windows, free-falling as their crowns fall from their heads. The Tower’s imagery is bleak, as it portends a dark night of the soul.

Although the Tower’s imagery is dire, it relates to one of the luckier tarot cards, the Wheel of Fortune. Some versions of the Wheel of Fortune contain three figures, one rising to power, one in control, and one falling from power.

This version of the Wheel of Fortune card contains the phrases “I reign,” “I have reigned,” and “I will reign again.” The quote is a reminder that luck is fickle, and you may be in power one moment and disempowered the next.

But the Tower card is a glimpse of the moment you lose power. The symbolism of the Tower has evolved but continues to portray the loss of ego, status, and control.

In some decks, the Tower symbolizes the fall of a wealthy empire, King, or leader. The symbolism indicates sudden, violent change leading to chaos and loss of control.

Plenty of tarot cards indicate change, but the Tower is unique. The imagery of the Tower suggests not only change but fall from grace. The imagery shows the Tower stretching into the sky, suggesting an out-of-control ego.

The Tower imagery symbolizes man’s intrusion into the Heavens and a humbling crisis that reminds humans of their mortality. The Tower symbolism is a reminder to avoid grandiosity. Loss of control is imminent.

Tower tarot tattoos are rare as most people don’t want to memorialize such a challenging archetype. Yet a Tower tattoo can signify someone who has survived trials and tribulations.

Upright General Meaning

The Tower tarot card meaning is always accompanied by difficult changes. Even when the Tower appears to help clear a path to growth and transformation, the implication is challenge and disruption.

You can’t escape inevitable change when the Tower tarot card appears. Your biggest challenge is acceptance. What you rely on and want the most is threatened when the Tower appears.

The Tower represents your illusions and the things you cling to as a source of power and status. When the Tower appears, you realize your ego attachments are unnecessary illusions.

The Tower tarot guides you to live without the things on which you relied. The trappings of your identity, status, wealth, and relationships don’t define you. The Tower tarot card appears when you must remember who you are without these ego attachments.

The Tower reminds you to change your definition of who you are. Find meaning and purpose amid a crisis. An earth-shattering event is underway, and there are no controlling circumstances now.

Your path to empowerment requires surrender, acceptance, and spiritual awakening. Your ego needs a reality check when the Tower tarot card appears.

The Tower followed by the Star tarot suggests a favorable outcome after a crisis. A life-changing event brings you closer to your ideals and sets the stage for accomplishment.

The Sun tarot following the Tower suggests an immediate positive outcome. Power is lost, but with transformation and new insight; hope is restored.

Read more about Major Arcana: The Devil, The Sun, Death, Temperance, and The Star.

Upright Love & Relationships

You can break illusions when the Tower tarot in love appears. Your romance may survive a Tower tarot crisis, but you will never see your partner the same way again.

Secrets surface, shattering your trust or connection with a partner. Perhaps they’ve been lying, or you’ve been deceiving yourself. The Tower reveals the truth about your relationship.

If you are single, the Tower may break an illusion you had about a love interest. You must embrace deeper truths about your circumstances when the Tower tarot card appears in a love reading.

Someone you counted on lets you down. You discover a love interest isn’t who you thought they were. When the Tower appears, you receive upsetting news about a partner, friend, or past partner.

Avoid chasing a love interest when the Tower appears. Stop trying to force a situation that isn’t working. Accept an inevitable change. When the Tower appears, a crisis can undermine your connection.

The lesson may be learning how to support your loved one in a new way. Someone you love may go through a crisis like job loss or a critical health diagnosis. You must support your loved one in a new way and respond to a tumultuous change.

The Devil tarot followed by the Tower tarot suggests a codependent or toxic relationship is exposed. Your illusions are shattered, but you were deceiving yourself initially.

The Moon tarot combined with the Tower suggests you are still caught in illusions and refusing to see the truth. Work through emotional insecurities to find the confidence to face hardships in your relationship.

The Death tarot followed by the Tower suggests a relationship must change profoundly. The end of your relationship may be imminent if the World tarot appears.

Upright Money & Career

The Tower tarot card appearing in money and career readings indicates an inevitable calamity that changes your professional path. You may learn something that shocks you and makes you disillusioned with your career.

Job loss is possible when this card appears in money and career reading. You may discover a project or position you wanted is not what you expected. Disappointment in your career path or loss of status accompanies the Tower.

Your finances take a tumble when the Tower appears. A past investment proves unstable. You may have significant expenses or repairs that require you to depend on your savings.

Upright Health

When the Tower appears in a health reading, you must be careful about your choices. You’ve been taking your health for granted. An accident or injury leads you to lose power and vitality.

You may learn about health issues that require significant changes to overcome. Recovery and wellness require you to make drastic steps to reinvent yourself and change your lifestyle.

When the Tower tarot card appears in a health reading, you are forced to contend with significant health issues that disrupt every area of your life. The health issues force you to redefine your priorities.

Upright Spirituality

When the Tower tarot reading appears in a spirituality reading, you are going through a crisis of faith. Your religious and spiritual beliefs no longer provide comfort.

You may endure a crisis or trauma that requires answers. The Tower indicates a profound loss of faith, change of beliefs, or disillusionment related to spirituality.

Your religious or spiritual faith may have hinged on an unreliable source like a cult or deceptive guru. The Tower tarot card suggests needing to break from tradition and look for wisdom and truth amidst illusions.

Reversed General Meaning

The Tower tarot card reversed doesn’t diminish the impact of this archetype by much. Your prospects are nominally improved or you may have a chance to avert catastrophe.

Take red flags seriously, and you can avoid calamity when the Tower appears reversed. You can make changes to redirect your focus and humble yourself. A new perspective helps you avoid the worst fallout of past illusions.

When the Tower tarot card appears reversed, you may try to avoid facing reality. Furthering illusions only makes a situation worse. Be open to accepting a situation. Look for opportunities to change your perspective.

Let go of ego attachments, and you can mitigate losses or trauma associated with an impending crisis. The crisis you face leads you to reinvent yourself and improve your prospects.

Reversed Love & Relationships

When the Tower tarot card appears reversed in love, you aren’t accepting a loss. You may cling to a past relationship in hopes the person will return.

You may also feel like your relationship is ending or an undercurrent of tension threatens to undermine your partnership. Unlike the upright Tower, the reversed Tower in a love reading suggests a prolonged crisis.

You may wish a catalyst would break the tension but instead, you are left tiptoeing around a conflict. The Tower reversed in a love reading suggests you are holding on to illusions and not being realistic.

Reversed Money & Career

Contend with a looming loss when the Tower tarot card appears reversed in money and career reading. You may hear rumors about restructuring or layoffs but not know how this impacts you.

You face a damper on your career path. Bad news, disillusionment, and disappointment disrupt your career, but the news is not as dismal as it could be. A crisis is mitigated by a safety net.

Expect disruption in finances when the Tower appears reversed. You face financial loss but may have a safety net to cushion the loss. You must restructure your budget and change your expectations when the Tower appears reversed.

Reversed Health

The Tower reversed in a health reading portends a positive outcome. A health scare is not as dire as initially feared. Don’t take your health for granted. Make changes before an illness progresses.

Your health may be on fragile ground. It’s not too late to make changes to improve your health, strength, and vitality. The Tower reversed in health reminds you to pay attention and act on new information.

Don’t panic and ignore symptoms. Get to the bottom of a health issue and make a dramatic change to ensure your recovery and safety. You may be accident-prone now, but pay attention, and you can avert a crisis.

Reversed Spirituality

The Tower tarot card reversed in a spirituality reading gives a boomerang effect. You may lose faith and then find a renewed connection to your spiritual source. Your faith wavers in a crisis, but you maintain perspective.

You strengthen your spirituality and beliefs amidst a crisis. You may question your beliefs, but your spiritual connection sees you through a challenging situation.

Strengthen your dedication to a spiritual system. Practices that align with your spiritual source help you mitigate the trauma of losses or changes. Your ego is humbled but spirituality helps you rebuild.