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The Old Sage and the Young Novitiate – Delving Deeper into the Hermit and Page of Wands

By November 30, 2011 May 4th, 2018

blog-20111130-the-old-sage-and-the-young-novitiate-delving-deeper-into-the-hermit-and-page-of-wandsMy friend, George from phuture.me, pointed out something quite intriguing to me.

“Recently I completed a free reading for someone through phuture. They have just left me feedback thanking me and reminding me of something I saw in their cards…

“I've never noticed it until now, but look at the Page of Wands and the Hermit. These two are opposites in many ways and the more I look at this arrangement the more I think there is a deeper meaning to it. The youth looking up at the old man. Both holding a stick, one is in summer (or hot lands) and the other in winter (or cold lands).

“It's a good discussion point between tarot readers as I'm sure everyone will remember some sort of interaction in a spread they've seen like this. George”

How perceptive!

So, let’s explore this further.

Both are holding a stick or a staff. For the Page, his wand is just starting to blossom and bud symbolising the beginning of new ideas, inspiration and creativity. For the Hermit, he too holds a staff, but his is a straight, yellow/gold staff symbolic that he already has a huge amount of knowledge stored.

Both stand in a landscape with mountains in the background. Mountains typically represent challenges which must be overcome or goals that we aspire to. The mountains in the Page of Wands are larger than those in the Hermit but still sit very much in the background. Thus, the Page will no doubt encounter many significant challenges on his journey, but he is yet to reach that point where things become difficult.

The mountains in the Hermit, on the other hand, are not as high and in fact, the Hermit is standing on one of the mountains in the foreground. Unlike the Page of Wands, he has already conquered life’s challenges and has achieved a deep understanding of his spiritual and life lessons.

Notice too that the mountains in the Page of Wands are barren, while the mountains in the Hermit are snow-capped. Just as George pointed out, the Page reflects warmth and Summer, while the Hermit represents cold and Winter. It is as if the energy in the Page is vibrant and abundant, but in the Hermit, it has gone cold. Perhaps the energy of the Hermit is now stored within.

Look at the contrast between day and night. The Page of Wands welcomes the day with energy and inspiration, while the Hermit stands alone in the night and darkness. George suggests that this may be symbolic too of the morning of youth and the evening of old age.

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If we think about the divinatory meanings of the Page of Wands and the Hermit, we can delve deeper into the dualities of these cards. The Page of Wands is about starting a new journey filled with inspiration, passion and excitement. He is at the beginning of a spiritual journey and is looking forward to self-development, discovery and growth.

The Hermit, on the other hand, has experienced life and has reached a point of enlightenment. He has passed through the journey that the Page is about to embark upon and he has indeed reached the pinnacle of this journey. He now has the deep spiritual understanding that the Page aspires to.

Together, the Page and the Hermit are like the young novitiate and the old, wise sage. A beautiful combination.

Notice that the Page appears to be looking towards the Hermit. This symbolises that the Page looks up to the Hermit as a wise old sage who can teach him so much about life and his spiritual meaning.

But notice too that the Hermit looks to the Page. The Hermit can also learn a lot from this youthful, spirited novitiate who is just starting out in life.

A Personal Story

I opened George’s email on the same morning that I received another email from an old work colleague. She shared the sad news that my old ‘boss’, Mick, was seriously ill. As I reflected back on my working relationship with Mick, I began to see the parallels between that relationship and the relationship shared between the Page and the Hermit.

Mick was like the Hermit – incredibly wise, experienced and enlightened. And I was like the Page – bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, eager to learn and to develop my knowledge. Mick would often joke around and say that he was just my “bag carrier”, despite being the Regional Managing Director of our firm, an esteemed author and consultant and holder of a raft of postgraduate degrees.

He often down-played how much he really knew, instead preferring to watch others make the discovery themselves. This is such a special talent to have. I learnt a huge amount from Mick and will always remember him with fond memories as one of my favourite bosses (not that he was ever really like a ‘boss' – this is what made it so special!).

So, it was a beautiful synchronicity of events when I reflected upon George’s email about the Page and the Hermit, and then on the nurturing relationship I had with my old boss.

What Connections Do You See Between the Hermit and the Page?

Leave your comments below and share your thoughts about the interaction between the Hermit and the Page of Wands.

If you have a personal story about how the Page and Hermit has played out in your life, please also share it in the comments. I'd love to hear it.

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