You can hang yourself physically which results in death. You can also hang yourself metaphysically which results in enlightenment. I am talking here about the latter.
This hanging yourself metaphorically or spiritually is what the Tarot has in mind with the card ‘The Hanged Man.’ It is pure superstition to call this arcana a ‘negative’ prediction. It is a very positive arcana for it predicts a state of deep inner contemplation that can lead to a metaphysical experience.
First off, it has to be seen that from the symbolism of the card, the man is not hanged in the way to be strangled, but he is put upside down, and the rope is around the ankle of his right foot. The other leg, he holds in a relaxed position so that the impression emerges that he is in a relaxed and contemplative mood. And there is a halo or aura around his head which further expresses the idea that he is a kind of yogi, or in a situation of deep contemplation of life.
It does not mean as some fools believe that you should commit suicide when you draw this card. It suggests you to kill in yourself what you don’t need for your normal growth, what inhibits your advancement in life. It asks you to let go and let God!
This card can have almost magical results. Sometimes solutions come up that seemed impossible before, sometimes they are triggered by prayer that is responded to. The explanation why this happens is simple. When you stop to act on the outside level, and you make space within yourself, you can be helped by the divine hand. In more rational terms, it is your subconscious mind that takes over and you experience meaningful coincidences. Things seem to be ‘falling in place’ by themselves.
But there is a caveat. If you fight the pressure you experience, and which is the signal for you to stop and stand still for a certain time, then you may experience a psychic crackup, go through a psychotic episode, ‘throw’ an accident, or get hit by a falling flower pot.
Thus in all things metaphysical, your agreement is needed for the divine hand to operate in your life. This is very important to know. In spiritual literature, for example in Jewish tales, Sufi tales or Christian fairy tales, angels or jinns can only help when you ask for this help or at least expressly agree with this help. The spiritual forces cannot act for humans if humans do not agree with their involvement in human matters. This is the Law of Respect that pervades the spiritual world, independently of any specific religion.
This is beautifully demonstrated in the movie ‘The Secret’ where the Jinn springs up from the tea kettle saying ‘Your Wish is My Command!’ The wish is thus very important to set the whole magic into place.
And this is so in daily life as well. There are no jinns in our ordinary lives, other than those we build in our vivid imagination, but the same law applies. You need to ‘wish upon a star’ as it is expressed in English, you need to express your desire. This is called the Law of Expression in the New Thought literature. It means that our desires will not be fulfilled if we daydream about them only; they must be expressed, either through prayer, affirmations, written declarations, decreeing, or through action. The action then is what is called manifestation of the desire. Thus for manifesting you need to express your desire in any possible way.
And when you are again in a ‘Hanged Man’ situation, when you see that the outer forces seem to block your advancement, you use the other forms of expressing your wish, you affirm, you decree, you use mental imagery, and you believe firmly that the law of expression will make sure your desire will be realized in the outer world at a later time, when namely the blockage vanishes off, which always happens, for all blockages in life are temporary.
Thus you can be confident that the ‘Hanged Man’ situation is of advantage to you in every single case; what is only needed is your wish, the expression of it, and your patience to wait until the time is ready for action.