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The Moon Tarot Card Meaning Upright and Reversed

The Moon Tarot Card Meaning Upright and Reversed

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When you walk under the moonlight, it is easy to imagine yourself surrounded by all kinds of ghosts. Suddenly a strange noise sounds, a shadow seems to hide behind a column, a squeak alerts you someone is following you… Usually, this is just your imagination. Everything seems larger and scarier than it actually is. If you think about this experience, you will understand The Moon Tarot card on an intuitive level. This card symbolizes our unconscious motivations and fears.

Read on to discover symbolism of The Moon Tarot card in the Rider-Waite deck, and its meaning in a spread in the upright and reversed positions in terms of love, health, work, and money.

Keywords for The Moon Tarot Card


  • Melancholy
  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Anguish
  • Deception


  • Resolution
  • Joy
  • Overcoming obstacles
  • Enlightenment
  • Silence

How to Interpret The Moon Tarot Card in a Reading

The Moon is the card of the occult, the unknown, and the uncertain. In that sense, it reflects deceptions, concealments, and lies. However, it also refers to the world of the unconscious, the psychic forces that escape reason. For artists and designers, The Moon represents a burst of creativity with all of the emotional ups and downs that this implies.

This card depicts a world of fantasy, where our dreams and fears coexist. Are you afraid of darkness, of night shadows, of failure? The Moon favors the emotional over the rational. When you feel an impulse, hunch, or chill that runs down your spine when you think about making certain decisions, that is your intuition speaking to you.

Some associate The Moon Tarot card with three dominant and dark tendencies of the human mind: addictions, depression, and madness. It marks the loss of compass, a detour towards the depth of our inner world, where our demons live. Getting in touch with them is the only known path to recovery.

This intuitive awakening often brings difficult personal lessons, but this card has a positive and a negative side like all of the Tarot cards. Even if the darkest night, your third eye will always guide you and help you to overcome every obstacle. What you need most is to believe in yourself.

The Upright Position of The Moon Tarot Card:

Upright Moon Tarot Card Meaning – Major Arcana XVIII

When The Moon Tarot card appears in a spread, it tends to mean an unpromising result, depending on the cards that are accompanying it. Its interpretation will vary according to the card that precedes it and the one that comes after it.

This card symbolizes the difficulty of achieving success and the great anguish that can cloud our thinking and ability to reason. The best advice is to emphasize the importance of taking action. Go ahead and take the necessary steps to achieve your goals.

When this card refers to a person, it is generally someone with significant insecurities. The person could be combative or someone who likes to confuse and resort to deception to achieve their goals. This may be a malicious person that is blocking our way to success through manipulation and hidden agendas.

The spiritual message of the moon is that even though everything seems dark and impossible, and even if you feel helpless and think you lack strength, the Light has always been within you.


  • Sensual and romantic moments but with constant changes that will make you feel insecure
  • Your partner is being very moody or anxious, but despite that, there is a moonlight glow protecting your relationship


  • Possible gynecological problems
  • Take good care of yourself if you are pregnant


  • Rethink your work or studies to assessing whether things are really as they seem


  • Be cautious with investments
  • It is time to save and cut costs
  • Don’t let yourself be guided by first impressions
  • Do not rush into any “one in a lifetime” business opportunities

The Reversed Position of The Moon Tarot Card:

Reversed Moon Tarot Card Meaning (Inverted) – Major Arcana XVIII

The meaning of the Moon Tarot card when reversed is an intensification of its characteristics and an even deeper immersion into lunatic behaviors. It may even signify pathologies, such as uncontrolled phobias or a risk of dementia.

On the other hand, there is a positive side. The Moon reversed signifies that the recent confusion or period of grief has come to an end. The darkness will dissipate, and we will finally be able to find the dim light that leads us towards the right path again.

Everything that has been hidden finally comes to light which gives you the feeling that a weight has been removed from your shoulders. On the other hand, you may find yourself in the spotlight, feeling uncomfortably exposed. Are you ready to face the audience?


  • Relationship problems because of insecurities, ambiguities, or confusions that can lead to a breakup
  • Love may come to an end


  • Mental problems
  • Depression
  • Insecurity
  • Health problems associated with anxiety due to unexpected changes
  • You need to learn to relax and recover
  • Not everything is as bad as it seems.


  • Problems with your boss or co-workers due to misunderstandings
  • Discussions can lead to drastic changes in your workplace
  • Intense emotions that are interfering with your work, and so it is necessary to take a break and recover your calm


  • Don’t splurge on superfluous things, because financial bad times may be just around the corner
  • In times of abundance, take precautions to take care of yourself during scarcity.

Imagery and Symbolism of The Moon Tarot Card

On this card, The Moon is in the sky with 16 large rays and 16 small rays. There are 15 small flames underneath her. 16 was the number of The Tower Tarot card and 15 was the number of The Devil. This seems to further indicate that this card is a pause to reflect on some of the more difficult parts of our journey through the Major Arcana thus far.

The theme of two pillars with a road to the mountains that we saw on Death repeats in this card. At the bottom of the card, we see a crab coming out of the water, apparently to start a journey along the road. A dog and a wolf are howling at The Moon. They both represent our lower, animal natures, but the dog is domestic and the wolf is wild. This signifies that part of our lower nature is under our control and part of it is not. Yet, both the tame and the wild parts of us are under the light of The Moon.

The Lessons of The Moon Tarot Card

This card represents a time of soul searching. This time of doubt and of immersion in the collective unconscious invites us to reflect on changing our old habits.

With this card, we come across everything we want to hide and everything that we want to deny with respect to ourselves but cannot avoid. The truth is there waiting for us, and we have to overcome our greatest fears to get to the other side of the road. Whether it is our secrets, our passions, or our damaging life perspectives, it is time to recognize all that we hide from others and from ourselves.

A lunatic decision: Discovering our most hidden secrets

The Moon, who is the Mother of Darkness, and the Guardian of the Night, has a dark side and a bright side. She claims all of the light of the Earth for herself, and she takes us to the world of dreams in all its splendor. Her influence so powerful that two canines react fearfully and with instinctive ferocity in an attempt to conquer the impossible, attacking an entity completely out of reach.

Only the crab seems to have the courage to overcome its lower nature. It seems to attempt an impossible goal, which is to leave its pond in the middle of the night and embark on the journey towards the Forbidden City. Will it be possible for the crab to complete this journey? Similarly, will you be able to go further, to let it go, to lose your old ways, and overcome this moment? Or you will walk backwards to evade reality? The choice is all yours.

You need to feel fear to have the courage to face reality. This card challenges us to have the will to keep going without sinking into our past or the mischievous comfort of old bad habits.

The uncertainty of the future can bring a period of confusion and darkness that we need to get through to reach our destination. Get out of the past and look to the future. It is time to change and leave your shell behind.

The Moon Tarot Card and Numerology

The number of The Moon Tarot card is 18. This can be expressed as 1+8, or 9. The first Tarot card whose number was 9 was The Hermit. 9 is the number of completion. Just as The Hermit represented a pause after the first set of Major Arcana, The Moon is a pause after the second set.

This second set started with The Wheel of Fortune, and it passed through some difficult and intense cards, such as Death, The Devil, and The Tower.  Even if one navigated through these cards successfully, there are bound to be residual emotions, fears, and leftover traumas as a result of the experiences these cards depict. The Moon invites us to reflect and heal after this difficult journey.

The Moon is associated with Pisces, which is the last sign of the zodiac. Pisces is opposite to Virgo, the sign that is associated with The Hermit.

The Moon Tarot Card Meaning Infographic

Rider-Waite images used with permission of U.S. Games Systems, Inc., Stamford, CT c. 1971 by U.S. Games Systems.