The Tower Tarot Card

Traditional Meaning

The Tower card signifies the “structure” of one’s life is changing.

The following positive keywords are associated with this card:

  • Blessing in disguise
  • Necessary change
  • Re-evaluation

It can also be associated with the following negative keywords:

  • Disaster
  • Disruption
  • Downfall
  • Sudden change


Although the name of the card itself is not something to worry about (unlike Death and The Devil), the illustration of the card somehow provides its appearance in a spread with a negative meaning. While it could be difficult to find a positive meaning for this card, it could still tell the person that unexpected events will be experienced. These events, in turn, will provide them with an opportunity that could make the person wiser and stronger. It can also encourage the individual so that they will see these sudden events as a way to force a change that will bring them more benefit than harm.

However, The Tower can also represent misery or unnecessary pain. It could be that the client will be accused of something by mistake and suffer punishment that they shouldn’t be experiencing.

But despite the apparent unpleasant meaning of this card, it should be remembered that this event shall pass. Once it does, they can either be taken to a new path or are presented with new opportunities.


When reversed, this card tells us that the person has resisted the necessary changes for so long that they no longer have a choice in the matter. The Universe has taken over and is moving the chess pieces around on the board so fast it is hard to tell where they will ultimately land. Acceptance and surrender are required at this time.

A Deeper Look:

Whether upright or reversed, the Tower card indicates that a bumpy ride is at hand. The change that the Death card heralded has intensified to the point that a complete life rebuild is in order. In most cases, the client will feel frightened or trapped because all that they have known seems to be collapsing around them. A feeling of helpless is common, and the person may feel as attacked from all sides. The reader should try to reassure the client that the shifts in life are for the greater good and will bring about a very positive resolution in the end, even if it feels like destructive upheaval now. The message of this card is that yes, change is occurring, but it is long overdue and will create a cleansing, purifying effect to ready the ground for what comes next.

When you look at the Tower card, the lightning strike at the top tells us that change occurred very suddenly and from the outside. It is rare that the individual is the one to initiate the actions described by this card. In most versions of The Tower, not only is the tower on fire from the lightning strike, but the ground below the foundation is crumbling as well. This means that no matter what, the tower is coming down and rebuilding will be necessary. The force of the lightning strike revealed the instability of the foundation and caused it to begin to disintegrate.

When the client needs a complete life overhaul, several areas of their life may deconstruct at once. These points of re-creation may be completely unrelated, such as a job and a relationship ending at the same time. This type of systematic breakdown occurs when current circumstances prevent the client from forward progression and locks them into a place of stagnation. The breakdown ultimately leads the individual to far improved circumstances; however, this process takes time and the blocks to success must be eliminated. The advice of this card is to embrace the changes that come and stay alert for new opportunities, employing the wisdom gained from prior lessons.


image of The Tower Tarot CardQuick Reference for Tower Tarot Card

Association: Associated with Mars.

Keyword: Catastrophe

General Meanings: Unexpected change. Problems with the ego and arrogance. Troubles at home. Correction after reaching too far. Plans are destroyed. Chaos.

Love: Sudden end – little chance of renewal.

Health: Troubles – heart attack – stroke, etc.

Money: Bad news.

Spirit: Pride leads to a fall.


The Devil Tarot Card

Traditional Meaning

The Devil card represents a desire for material or physical possessions. It also suggests a failure of good intentions.

Some of the positive associations with this card are as follows:

  • Commitment
  • Permanence

It can also be associated with the following negative keywords:

  • Anger
  • Entrapment
  • Greed
  • Ignorance
  • Lust
  • Obsession
  • Tyranny


Just like Death, the name of the card somehow gives a negative meaning. Fortunately, there are still positive concepts attributed to this card. This is because if The Devil is included in a person’s reading and is revealed in an upright position, it could signify commitment to a relationship or even marriage (which is a form of permanence).

However, the card mostly warns people when it is in a reverse position. This is because the card signifies addiction, lust, and temptation – all of which does not provide a favorable outcome. This could serve as a warning, as The Devil may be representing obsessions or people that may not be good for the client. Therefore, it is imperative that they should carefully examine their situation. It also warns them of the possible grave consequences that may be experience if they let lust, greed, and power become their motivation. Having the Devil in a tarot card reading is a sign that they need to change their course of action before it becomes too late.

Taking the card as a warning sign, it can still be implied that The Devil is helpful despite the multiple negative keywords associated with it.


The critical nature and call to arms identified with the upright position of this card intensifies when it presents reversed. In this case, the client knows exactly what they are supposed to do and actively avoids doing it, much like a dog that soils the carpet and refuses to look at it or acknowledge it. In reverse, The Devil tells us that it is now vital that the individual take steps to deal with the demons with which they wrestle.

A Deeper Look:

The Devil is a card that produces a fearful reaction to the untrained eye as soon as it crops up. When you study the images on The Devil card carefully, you can see the same figures that were on The Lovers card. In the card of The Lovers, these two faced a choice between instant gratification and moral integrity. In the Devil card, we see the result of choosing the easy path and find them chained to the outcome of their choice. The good news is that if you look at the chains that bind them to their own personal Devil, they are quite loose and could easily lift right over their heads. The option of freedom is within their grasp, but they must act to achieve that freedom. It cannot happen on its own.

I enjoy working with The Devil card and the Death card and find that they are two of my favorite cards when giving a Tarot Reading. The Death card brings new beginnings and exciting adventures while pushing away the old and obsolete that clutters up our life and blocks new energy from coming in. The Devil card challenges us to look in our dark corners and closely examine what holds us back in life. That is always valuable information to have and at its root, it is about self-empowerment and taking control of our own destiny. The Devil card is not about an external demonic force with control over your life. It is all about the demons inside, those that come for us in the night and in our daily lives and hold us back from our greatest success. Most people already know what fears, habits, relationships, or conditions keep them from moving forward and living a fully engaged life, making their dreams a reality.

The Devil card tells the individual to break free of those chains and at last overcome those obstacles. Let go of those handicaps and move forward, free and unhindered, despite any inconvenience or discomfort that might come.

image of The Devil Tarot CardQuick Reference for The Devil Tarot Card

Association: Associated with Capricorn.

Keyword: Slave

General Meanings: Attachment to the material. Lies, deceit, and unscrupulous action. Taking care of practical matters – manifestation. Sex and drugs.

Love: Self centered – only physical.

Health: STDs – bones – knees.

Money: Don’t be a slave – watch for lies.

Spirit: Let go of material.


Further Resources

1. The Tower Tarot card at Keen

2. The Tower Tarot Card at Learn Tarot

3. Tower Tarot Card Meaning at BiddyTarot

4. The Devil Tarot card at Keen

5. Devil Tarot Card Meaning at Teach Me Tarot

6. The Devil Tarot Card Meaning at Psychic Revelation