The Tower is the 17th card (although it's called 16 because the Fool is 0) in the Fool's Journey and it is not an easy one to take. It is a card with heavy amounts of nuance and complications that we will not going through today but it should be understood that the Tower is not just a surprise coming your way. If you are new to tarot, it is probably best to look at it as a card of destruction, with the destruction being to the things in your life that are not serving you as well as you think they should. While in the long term it is generally positive, in the short term it rarely feels that way.
You will often hear myself, and other readers, speak about Tower Moments. These are the major disappointments, the crises of faith, the times when we don't know what else to do. So you may assume that this is something that we avoid in life. And honestly, I think on the conscious level, most people do. Under the surface, however, our unconscious mind can have different ideas. Oftentimes, we end up secretly (sometimes it's a secret from ourselves, sometimes it's just something we don't share with the world) hoping for these moments. But why?
The truth is that The Tower can be a bit like a drug. It crashes through your life taking everything with it, but it also in a way relieves you of responsibility. No need to walk away if something will do the removal for you. As such, these moments become a relief, something we look for when we've created a reality we can't leave on our own but know that we need to, that we'd be better off. There is the knowledge that when these things are gone, we will be able to rebuild in a better way, but the fear that we don't know how or that we will lose these attachments we have, however tenuous and painful, haunts us.
The problems that come with waiting for the Universe to hit you with the Tower should be obvious but usually in the moments of waiting all we can see is our problem going away. And that's all we can focus on. When you find yourself in this position, I have a few things you should keep in mind.
If you do not fix the pattern, it will repeat itself. The key to rolling with the Tower is to understand how you got to a place with a rocky foundation in the first place so that when you go to rebuild your life, your relationships, etc. you are not making the same mistakes.
If your reluctance to remove these things in your life that no longer serve you means that the universe steps in, you do not have control over the way these things are cleared out. An example of this would be a toxic work environment. If you are unable to make the necessary changes, the next step should be building your safety net and updating your resume. If instead you decide that you cannot imagine being stuck without a job and proceed to put your head down, not only will you be loading more stress into the situation, but when the universe steps in it will likely be with layoffs and possibly drama. That sense of relief may be there but you are now also starting at point zero.
But how can we get ahead of this? The first step is realization.
As I mentioned before, when we hope for the Tower, it is not usually something we do out loud. It is something we hear ourselves whisper right before bed, or on the way into that situation we are hoping to leave. Maybe it's a fantasy you have about Godzilla knocking over your building or just the muttering of "I can't do this anymore". This is your subconscious wish to be free manifesting itself. Pay attention and look at the pieces in your life and be honest with yourself about what you can continue to accept. Taking regular stock of the foundations of the areas of your life is also important. If you can catch the crack, you can decide if repairing or replacing works better.
Have you ever had a Tower moment? Were you grateful right away or did it feel the way they are expected to? Would you go back with the information you have now or would you let it go again?
Pictures: The Fallen Tower is from the Cult deck by Ki11erpancake illustration.
The Tower is from the Lost and Found: A Mixed Media Tarot Deck by Robyn Mallery Art that is being put together now and can be backed on here on Kickstarter