Heart Tarot (Lo Scarabeo, 2009) offers us another Major: the Hermit. This seems a bit of a strange card to receive on Valentine's Day, but then, needing some time out isn't dependent on a Hallmark holiday!
This Hermit seems particularly lonely, up on the top of an extremely high pillar, with birds flying below him. The landscape all around is totally barren, though I guess that the patterns could be quite meditative for the eye. Although he has a lamp, it is behind him, its light unseen.
In a jokey way, this image reminds me of the 2003 stunt by David Blaine where he endured 44 days in a plexiglas case next to the River Thames in London, with only water to sustain him. This Hermit seems similarly disheveled.
What makes someone choose to distance themselves from others? It can be to have some time and space to study and learn, or it can be as a protest or a performance.
For me, I see this card being about emotional distance. Today and tomorrow, I finish with two clients, one of whom I've been seeing for six months. I feel great sadness at this - my world will seem more barren for no longer seeing them. I know I will soon have other clients, yet I will miss these people who I have come to care about. Taking some time to acknowledge that, then turning to see the light that is still there, sounds like a plan.
I am grateful for the ability to care, even when it hurts.