After years of fighting, learning, building, loving, hating, creating, succeeding, failing, the Fool wishes to retreat from the world to be alone for a while. Deep in the forest, the Fool hides in his cottage, sleeping, reading, cleaning, thinking. At night, however, he goes out carrying nothing but a staff and a lantern. He realizes that there has been much he’s missed in his life while on these long walks, just as he sees animals, insects and flowers that only come out by moonlight. As he begins to see the world’s secrets illuminated by his lantern, so too, he feels the secrets of his own mind illuminated. He has almost become the young Fool again, going wherever his whims take him. However, in the beginning, the Fool carried his staff on his shoulder, holding the contents of his pack behind him, and unseen, just as the secrets within him. Now, he holds the staff in front of him with the lantern hung on it. The hermit is now as the lantern, illuminating all that is around him from the light that is within him.
When you pull this card in a spread, it means that as the Fool has removed himself from the world at large to become the Hermit, it too may be a time for you to remove yourself a bit from society to discover the greater meanings in life. This could be a spiritual discovery, as throughout history, the wise women and wise men, oracles and psychics were set apart from society, those who were seeking for them had to leave their towns and villages and set out into nature to find them. It is a time of gaining wisdom and perspective after all that you have learned in life by this point, and continuing to learn and understand all of life’s connections.
It is a time of thinking, reviewing quietly, alone. While more learning and education is in order, it is a time of doing this alone. This alone time will allow you to understand what is important to you in your life. It could also mean that there may be a teacher of some sort appearing in your life at this time to help you sort out which way to make a decision about yourself and your life, but the decision is ultimately up to you which path you walk down.
Take your time to allow the Hermit to fully reveal to you what you are to understand at this point.