Even inverted, this card relates to the end of a cycle. The inversion, however, might make that ending anticlimactic. You could even find you need to redo some tasks before you can put the project to bed.
If you receive this card you might feel stagnant, limited, and frustrated. These feelings could keep you from moving forward. Conversely, you could stay put to rest on your laurels. Whatever the motivation, the response is the same. You are coming to the end of a cycle and you have not reached your full potential.
How can you combat this energy? You can look at the project and analyze its stages or components. Is there still room for improvement? Is there still time to make those changes? Set out to improve those small bits you are able to change. Change them one at a time. Then step back and look at the project again. It might be that extra shot you need to enjoy the fruits of your labors.
The World interacts with the other major arcana.
Magician: The Magician (Cobbler or Magus in other decks) negates the abstract quality of the World.
Emperor: When the upright Emperor comes before the World, it suggests a lull in war, a state of truce, or a transient peace. When the inverted Emperor comes before the World, it suggests conflict, or loss of power or position in the world.
Justice: Justice negates the abstract quality of the World.
Hermit: The Hermit negates the abstract quality of the World.
Wheel of Fortune: When the Wheel of Fortune and the World combine in a spread, light will be shed on hidden factors, which will bring success.
Hanged Man: When the Hanged Man comes before the World, a loving sacrifice will bring triumph. When the Hanged Man comes after the World, it suggests a sacrifice that could result in sadness and parting.
Death: When the Death card comes before the World, it could indicate the fall of a national leader or a world epidemic.
Tower: When the Tower and the World come together in a spread, it indicates a general, rather than a personal matter.
Sun: When the Sun and the World come together in a spread, it indicates an uplifting emotional experience which brings love, joy, and harmony.
The Major Arcana
The twenty-two cards of the Major Arcana tend to hold the big lessons. These cards carry powerful messages. If you are reading a spread of cards, watch for the Major Arcana. If your spread contains more than 30% Major Arcana, you are in the midst of something big, or beyond your control. If most of the cards in the spread are from the Major Arcana, you might be trying to exert too much control. You might have trouble expressing your feelings, or you might be near your breaking point. A spread without any Major Arcana cards could indicate you are hiding from the truth of the issue, or are in some deep distress. If this is the case, it is important to find someone you can trust to guide you through this period of time. In a spread, focus most of your attention on the Major Arcana. The other cards will be useful for clarifying the situation.
Number — 21, which resolves to 3
Three is a number of creativity, cooperation, and integration.
There is nothing to fear with an inversion. Mary K. Greer explains in her book, The Complete Book of Tarot Reversals, that an inverted card may be interpreted in one or more of these twelve ways:
- Blocked or Resisted
- Delayed, Difficult, Unavailable
- Inner, Unconscious, Private
- New or Dark Moon (if you are reading cards from a round deck)
- Breaking Through, Overturning, Refusing, Changing Direction
- The Opposite of the Upright Meaning, or Lacking
- Misused or Misdirected
- The Upright Meaning Backward
- A Rectification or Cure
- Magical, Unconventional, or Humorous