Recently, I had the pleasure of attending TIDE (The International Divination Event), where my husband was one of the keynote speakers. During the event, Mary K. Greer delivered a really enjoyable keynote about the tarot symbolism that she saw in BTS music videos. I loved how she combined two of her passions. Madame Pamita and James Divine also hosted one of their famous Tarot Discos at the event. It was a fun dance party where they played songs that were thematically connected to the tarot and projected the image of the card on a screen while the song played. Normally, they play disco songs, but this time they chose 80s songs. Inspired by these three, I decided to explore if I could find connections between Björk songs and the major arcana, two of my favorite things. So, I’ve been going through my vinyl collection, trying to determine which Björk songs resonate the most with the Major Arcana in my interpretation. It’s important to note that tarot interpretations, like song lyrics, are subjective to the individual. Therefore, these are just glimpses into how I personally interpret the Major Arcana and Björk’s lyrical themes within her songs and what we can learn from both.
“The Fool” as “Moon”
“To risk all, is the end all and the beginning all”
“The Fool” represents the archetype of new beginnings, stepping into the unknown, and embracing risks. Björk’s song “Moon” resonates with this energy, expressing the transformative power of venturing beyond one’s comfort zone. The lyrics embody the notion of being reborn, starting fresh, finding happiness, and embracing failure as a catalyst for growth. Just as The Fool symbolizes embarking on a new journey with a fresh perspective, “Moon” encourages us to take leaps of faith and discover new paths.
“Magician” as “Hunter”
“I’m not stopping”
The Magician card embodies the qualities of resourcefulness, self-assuredness, and the ability to manifest desires. Björk’s “Hunter” captures the essence of the Magician, reflecting the pursuit of new experiences and the utilization of personal skills and abilities. The song urges us to take initiative, tap into our power, and shape our own reality. Just as the Magician harnesses their inner strength to manifest their desires, “Hunter” encourages us to embrace our own potential and navigate the world with confidence.
“High Priestess” as “Sweet Intuition”
“Fuck logic, rival to instinct and sweet intuition.”
The High Priestess represents the realm of intuition, inner wisdom, and the power of the subconscious. Björk’s “Sweet Intuition” embodies these themes, inviting us to turn inward and trust our instincts over external knowledge. The song encourages us to depart from solely logical thinking and embrace our intuitive understanding. It reflects the High Priestess’s connection to mystery and the depths of our psyche, urging us to tap into our inner wisdom and follow the guidance it provides.
“Empress” as “All Is Full of Love”
“It’s all around you. All is full of love.”
The Empress card symbolizes abundance, nurturing, and unconditional love. Björk’s “All Is Full of Love” encapsulates these qualities, reminding us to trust the love that is given and be open to unexpected sources of love. The song invites a shift in perspective to recognize the overflowing love that surrounds us. Just as the Empress teaches us to remove emotional barriers and embrace the love available, “All Is Full of Love” inspires us to experience a nurturing and abundant love in our lives.
“Emperor” as “Who Is It”
“His embrace: A fortress. It fuels me and places a skeleton of trust right beneath us. Bone by bone. Stone by stone.
The Emperor represents firmness, structure, and authority. Björk’s “Who Is It?” embodies these themes, conveying a sense of strength, stability, and the ability to provide a safe and structured environment. The song highlights the Emperor’s position of power and the importance of balance and discipline. Just as the Emperor demands respect, “Who Is It?” emphasizes the need for self-assuredness and a strong foundation to navigate the complexities of life.
“Hierophant” as “Cover Me”
“While I crawl into the unknown, Cover me. I’m going hunting for mysteries.”
The Hierophant card represents the search for hidden knowledge, spiritual guidance, and challenging conventional beliefs. Björk’s “Cover Me” conveys these themes, symbolizing the courage and dedication required to explore the unknown. The song invites us to embark on a journey of discovery and spiritual growth, reflecting the Hierophant’s role as a guardian of ancient wisdom. “Cover Me” encourages us to delve deeper into our spiritual path and uncover profound truths.
“The Lovers” as “Pagan Poetry”
“I find an accurate copy; A blueprint of the pleasure in me.”
“The Lovers” card embodies themes of love, desire, connection, and the choices we make in relationships. Björk’s “Pagan Poetry” reflects the intensity and complexity of these emotions, exploring the depths of passionate connections. The song delves into the exploration of emotions and inner conflicts that arise within a relationship. Just as The Lovers card symbolizes the choices we face in matters of the heart, “Pagan Poetry” invites us to navigate the complexities of love and embrace its transformative power.
“Chariot” as “Army of Me”
The Chariot represents self-sufficiency, determination, and taking control of one’s destiny. Björk’s “Army of Me” embodies these themes, emphasizing the importance of personal strength and resilience. The song conveys a sense of inner power, reflecting an individual’s ability to overcome challenges through their own willpower and to deny coddling their weaknesses. Just as the Chariot card symbolizes the need to harness one’s inner drive, “Army of Me” inspires us to tap into our own strength and navigate life’s obstacles with determination.
“Strength” as “Innocence”
“When I once was fearless, Innocence roared.”
The Strength card explores the journey from fearlessness to embracing fear, finding courage within vulnerability, and recognizing the transformative power of overcoming challenges. Björk’s “Innocence” embodies these themes, conveying resilience, inner strength, and the ability to roar in the face of adversity. The song inspires us to embrace our vulnerability and find strength within it. Just as the Strength card reminds us of the power of gentle perseverance, “Innocence” encourages us to navigate life’s trials with grace and resilience.
“Hermit” as “Wanderlust”
“I have lost my origin and I don’t want to find it again.”
The Hermit represents solitude, inner wisdom, and the quest for self-discovery. Björk’s “Wanderlust” captures these themes, portraying a desire for introspection and a yearning for spiritual exploration. The song reflects the Hermit’s detachment from societal norms and the liberation found in embracing one’s own journey of introspection. “Wanderlust” encourages us to embark on our own quest for self-discovery and embrace the wisdom that comes from solitude.
“Wheel of Fortune” as “It’s Not Up To You”
“Unthinkable surprises about to happen, but what they are… It’s not up to you.”
The Wheel of Fortune embodies the unpredictable nature of life, the need to adapt to changing circumstances, and the acceptance of cyclical patterns. Björk’s “It’s not up to you” reflects these themes, emphasizing surrendering control and embracing the unknown. The song reminds us that outcomes are often beyond our personal influence and encourages us to let go and trust in the unfolding of life’s events. Just as the Wheel of Fortune teaches us to adapt and find opportunity within change, “It’s not up to you” invites us to surrender and embrace the ever-turning wheel of fate.
“Justice” as “Declare Independence”
“Damn colonists. Ignore their patronizing. Tear off their blindfolds. Open their eyes”
The Justice card symbolizes standing up for one’s rights, asserting independence, and challenging oppressive forces. Björk’s “Declare Independence” embodies these themes, conveying a message of defiance and advocating for justice and equality. The song emphasizes the importance of creating one’s own identity, preserving one’s culture, and seeking justice. Just as the Justice card represents the pursuit of truth and fairness, “Declare Independence” inspires us to fight against oppression and champion social justice. Not to mention the refrain is literally whispering the word “Justice.”
“Hanged Man” as “Hyperballad”
“I go through all this before you wake up so I can feel happier.”
The Hanged Man represents surrender, detachment, and gaining a new perspective through self-reflection. Björk’s “Hyperballad” embodies these themes, conveying a sense of letting go and embracing vulnerability. The song reflects the transformative and reflective nature of The Hanged Man, reminding us of the importance of releasing control and viewing life from a different viewpoint. “Hyperballad” invites us to embrace change and find liberation through self-reflection and introspection, just as The Hanged Man encourages us to surrender and gain new insights.
“Death” as “Ancestress”
“My ancestress’ clock is ticking, her once vibrant rebellion is fading.”
The Death card represents the concept of transformation, embracing mortality, and acknowledging the cycle of life and death. Björk’s “Ancestress” captures these themes, conveying a sense of embracing the transformative power of ancestral connections. The song reminds us of the inevitable nature of change and the eternal imprint we leave behind. Just as the Death card symbolizes the release of the old to make way for the new, “Ancestress” invites us to honor the past and embrace the transformative potential of change.
“Temperance” as “Bacholorette”
“I’m a whisper in the water, secret for you to hear.”
The Temperance card represents balance, harmony, and the integration of opposites. Björk’s “Bacholorette” embodies these themes, reflecting the interplay between contrasting elements and the quest for equilibrium. The song captures the essence of Temperance by emphasizing the need for reciprocity, understanding, and the transformative nature of connection. “Bacholorette” inspires us to find harmony within ourselves and in our relationships, just as the Temperance card encourages us to seek balance and moderation. There’s also a ton of alchemical references in this song, which is most likely just coincidental, but the Temperance card is usually a reference to alchemy and in the Thoth deck it’s named “Art” in reference to the art of alchemy.
“The Devil” as “Unravel”
“While you are away my heart comes undone, Slowly unravels in a ball of yarn. The devil collects it with a grin.”
The Devil card represents temptation, unhealthy attachments, and the need to break free from bondage. Björk’s “Unravel” embodies these themes, conveying a sense of being ensnared in a situation of desire, obsession, and temptation. The song explores the potential consequences of succumbing to unhealthy attachments and the need to find liberation. Just as The Devil card symbolizes the need to break free from self-imposed limitations and obsession, “Unravel” highlights the self-imposed torture we create for ourselves through over-attachment.
“The Tower” as “Pluto”
“Excuse me, but I just have to explode. Explode this body off me.”
The Tower card represents sudden and disruptive change, the breaking down of old structures, and the opportunity for rebirth and transformation. Björk’s “Pluto” captures these themes, conveying a sense of explosive change and the potential for growth amidst destruction. The song reminds us that even in moments of chaos and upheaval, there is the potential for profound transformation. “Pluto” encourages us to embrace change and find renewal in the face of upheaval, just as The Tower card teaches us to embrace the dismantling of old patterns to make way for new beginnings.
“The Star” as “Aurora”
“Looking hard for moments of shine from twilight to twilight.”
The Star card represents hope, inspiration, and divine guidance in challenging circumstances. Björk’s “Aurora” embodies these themes, evoking a sense of seeking solace and connection in times of adversity. The song reflects the transformative and uplifting nature of The Star, reminding us of the power of faith, optimism, and spiritual connection. “Aurora” inspires us to find light and hope in the darkest of times, just as The Star card guides us toward a renewed sense of purpose and inspiration.
“The Moon” as “Hidden Place”
“Hides himself. Invents a charm that makes him invisible. Hides in the air.”
The Moon card symbolizes the exploration of hidden emotions, intuition, and the depths of the subconscious. Björk’s “Hidden Place” captures these themes, evoking a mood of introspection, vulnerability, and the search for solace and understanding within ourselves. The song invites us to delve into the hidden realms of our psyche and embrace our intuition. “Hidden Place” encourages us to trust the mysteries that lie within, just as The Moon card teaches us to explore our subconscious and find hidden truths.
“The Sun” as “Sun In My Mouth”
“I will take the sun in my mouth and leap into the ripe air.”
The Sun card embodies joy, vitality, and the awakening of inner radiance. Björk’s “Sun In My Mouth” reflects these themes, conveying a sense of embracing joy and the fearless pursuit of life’s experiences. The song evokes a mood of celebration, self-acceptance, and a deep connection with the natural world. “Sun In My Mouth” inspires us to embrace our inner light, express ourselves fully, and bask in the warmth of life’s joys. Just as The Sun card represents the radiance and positivity that can be found within, the song encourages us to shine brightly and embrace the transformative power of living with joy.
“Judgement” as “Show Me Forgiveness”
“Show me forgiveness for having lost faith in myself and let my own interior up to inferior forces.”
The Judgement card represents self-reflection, forgiveness, and the opportunity for renewal and spiritual awakening. Björk’s “Show Me Forgiveness” embodies these themes, conveying a sense of seeking forgiveness, acknowledging past mistakes, and embracing the potential for personal growth. The song reflects the transformative and liberating nature of the Judgement card, reminding us of the power of self-reflection, forgiveness, and acceptance in our journey towards enlightenment.
“The World” as “Cosmogony”
“Heaven’s bodies whirl around me and dance eternal.”
The World card symbolizes completion, fulfillment, and the interconnectedness of all things. Björk’s “Cosmogony” captures these themes, conveying a sense of awe, wonder, and the grandeur of creation. The song reflects on the active participation of cosmic and human forces in shaping the world and invites us to recognize our place within the vast interconnected web of existence. “Cosmogony” inspires us to embrace the wholeness and harmony symbolized by The World card and to honor our role as co-creators of the universe.