For the tarot enthusiast aspiring to master Lenormand reading, there are several cards common to both systems that stubbornly resist shedding their tarot trappings during the transition. Interestingly, they all appear in sequence in the tarot: the Tower (XVI), the Star (XVII), the Moon (XVIII) and the Sun. (XIX). Since their Lenormand counterparts, at least by title, are the High Tower (19), The Stars (16), the Moon (32) and the Sun (31), the temptation to conflate and confuse their meanings is understandable. In some cases, the astrological correspondences behind the tarot cards intrude into Lenormand space as well, creating a “cross-contamination” of three systems that is detrimental to a clear understanding of the Lenormand cards.
Of these, prior impressions of the Moon are usually the most firmly rooted in the mind of the student. I had this to say about it in a previous post:
“There is no ‘one size fits all’ core meaning that serves every method. Regardless, the more intuitively-inclined readers who use all three (tarot, Lenormand and astrology) seem to have a compulsion for wrapping the astrological sense of the Moon around every instance of its appearance. So it’s always about emotional sensitivity (and vulnerability) no matter where and when it shows up.” The full post is here:
The Lenormand Moon has little to do with emotional expression; it’s purview is honor, recognition, reputation, fame and their obvious connection to work, where advancement tends to hinge upon them. Nonetheless, I’m constantly seeing online interpretations that bring in the emotional angle and by association the prospect for romance, which is technically the province of the Heart. This is a tough one to shake, but it needs to be done for the sake of clarity.
Speaking of which, among observations on the tarot Star, those of Aleister Crowley are almost alone in considering it to mean a crystalline clarity of vision. The more common assumption is that it stands for “hope” above all else. In Lenormand it is a card of success and good fortune in one’s endeavors, and can also have to do with science, the mind and the esoteric arts. In this sense, some writers also include clarity and precision among its attributes. Viewing it solely as an indicator of (often unattainable) hopes and wishes misses much of its favorable import.
The Tower in tarot is a highly disruptive influence, with a traditional function of casting down those who have gotten “too big for their britches.” (In more modern terms, it relates to any form of sudden misfortune or trauma.) In contrast, the Lenormand High Tower is a card of “establishment” rather than destruction, whether in longevity of life, officialdom and its “places of power” (administrative, executive and governmental buildings) or singularity of purpose (being set apart or elevated in some way, which often brings detachment). Obviously, these interpretations are in no way interchangeable (with the possible exception of the High Tower standing for separation and loneliness such as occurs during divorce or imprisonment).
Only the Sun demonstrates consistency of meaning across all three systems. It is the ultimate expression of happiness, great good fortune and success wherever it appears, although modern psychological interpreters insist on hunting for shadows beneath its benevolent gaze. As the source of all life on Earth, it accentuates the positives and represents the core of our vitality. The student won’t go far wrong in sticking with this reassuring outlook in most reading situations.
By and large, tarot and Lenormand meanings stay on their own side of the fence and present no difficulty for those who would work with both. It’s only in these few instances that care should be taken not to create a “mish-mash” of muddy observations that serve only to obscure the picture.