Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot is essentially the wheel of life. No matter what happens, the wheel will keep turning, throwing life lessons our way and constantly keeping us on our toes.

We can never know what is coming next or when the Wheel of Fortune will show up. When it does though, we need to let go and allow the universe to take us to where we’re supposed to be.

I always see the Wheel of Fortune as a reminder that everything in our universe works in cycles. Everything has a beginning, middle, and end. Nothing exists forever and we always find ourselves back at the beginning of a cycle once we’ve completed the last one.

To keep our balance as the wheel spins, we need to find our centre. Realign ourselves with what is going on around us and allow the synchronicities to flow to us.

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings Destiny
The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings
The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings Lessons

Wheel of Fortune Upright Meanings

In the upright position, The Wheel of Fortune Tarot meanings are of luck and random outcomes.

It is a gentle reminder to us that life will keep on going, and whatever it is you’re going through right now will pass and fall away to allow another step in the Fool’s journey to come into play.

Some of the meanings of The Wheel of Fortune Tarot upright are:

  • Fortune

  • Luck

  • Fate

  • Destiny

  • Cycles

A good thing to remember when The Wheel of Fortune shows up in your tarot reading is that your fate is in the hands of the universe.

You’ve done everything in your physical power to sway things your way but now you just have to surrender and let the universe do its magic.

Wheel of Fortune Reversed Meanings

In the reversed position, The Wheel of Fortune Tarot isn’t so much a sign of bad things to come, it’s more of a symbol of our vices trying to stop the wheel from turning as it should.

When things are out of our control we can panic and try and grab hold of whatever is closest. The Wheel of Fortune reflects this behaviour or mindset back to us so we can recognise where we’re holding on too tight.

Some of the reversed Tarot meanings of The Wheel of Fortune are:

  • Resisting change

  • Bad luck

  • Rigidity

  • Let go

  • Controlling

There are a lot of similarities between the Wheel of Fortune and the Death card in that they both symbolise our attitudes to change. The Wheel of Fortune differs slightly because it refers to the changes that come with the constant flow of cycles in life, rather than a change that forces us to redirect or rethink our direction.

Reading Wheel of Fortune in a spread

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot often hints that a cycle that we’ve been caught up in, could be coming to an end or that we’re about to find ourselves in a situation where we have very little control over the outcome.

With this card being the 10th Major Arcana card, there is a ‘wrapping up’ energy that we see often in the 10s within the Minor Arcana.

There is something new coming in and we now have to allow things to play out organically and remind ourselves that what will be, will be.

Wheel of Fortune as an Invitation

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot is an invitation to let go, to relax and allow the chips to fall where they may. We’re not required to do much other than focus on ourselves and how we are approaching the situation. We are invited to put our faith in the universe and trust that it has our best interests at heart.

For The Wheel of Fortune, this invitation could be the following:

  • An invitation to leave things to fate

  • An invitation to look at parts of our life where you are trying too hard to remain in control

  • An invitation to re-centre yourself in order to get a clearer view of the situation

  • An invitation to surrender to the will of the universe and see where you land

Wheel of Fortune as Sage Advice

There is something very wise about the Wheel of Fortune, I always get the feeling that it knows what you need the most and when you’re acting from a place of ego rather than compassion. Because of this, The Wheel of Fortune often gives us the very best advice!

Some advice The Wheel of Fortune may offer is:

  • Assess where you are holding on too tightly and take steps to relinquish control

  • No matter what you do, life will continue to march forwards, whether you march with it is up to you

  • The universe has your back so trust in its intentions

Wheel of Fortune as a Lesson

The Wheel of Fortune is filled with lessons about life and the world we navigate every day. We see this learning represented in the four figures in each corner of the Rider Waite-Smith tarot card. These four golden figures each have their own book and are studying up, something we see played out in the very final Major Arcana card, The World, with the figures finally having learned everything they needed to within this particular cycle.

Some lessons that The Wheel of Fortune may offer you are:

  • To learn how much influence you have in your life and where that influence can be found

  • To accept that life is not in our control and we have to just go with the flow

  • To understand that we can go through multiple cycles throughout our lives and the change that comes with them is an opportunity for growth

  • The lesson of transformation and personal growth, especially the knowledge that we are not the same person we were when we were born and we won’t be the same person when we die

Wheel of Fortune as a Redirection

The Wheel of Fortune isn’t so much a redirection as a gentle nudge in the right one. The wheel turns constantly in one direction, we can’t go back and often we can’t rush forward. If we are talking about this card as a redirection it is more to do with our mindset than what is happening to us in our physical realm.

As a redirection, The Wheel of Fortune could symbolise a need to:

  • Find a way to relax, let go of control and allow things to play out organically

  • Make the best of a bad situation, instead of letting it derail you, what could you learn from it in order to push you forwards?

  • Embrace the knowledge that if you put out good vibes, you’ll reap the best rewards

  • Think about how controlling you’re being and where you may be resisting the inevitable

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings Ten

The Number Ten

The number ten is often the end of a cycle, a completion of something. It doesn’t matter if that something is good or bad, it’s reached the end of the line. 

As we move into double digits for the Major Arcana, we’ll start to reduce the numbers down to their single digit ‘root’ number. For Wheel of Fortune and the number ten, we get the root number of one (1+0=1). Again we are brought back to the fierce creative power that comes with the number one, something that we can see in Wheel of Fortune as we release control and allow life to flow through us instead of fighting against it. 


The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings Jupiter

Astrological Jupiter

The Wheel of Fortune’s astrological association is the planet Jupiter. This planet has the properties of expansion and fortune.

Jupiter is often described as the ‘giver of gifts’ because if it’s immense generosity. We see this reflected in Wheel of Fortune as the gift of life, not just being born into the world, but all the complex lessons and experiences that come with living in this world as a human being. There is an authority to Jupiter which we also see in the Wheel of Fortune card, a unmovable ruler that says gently ‘this is for your own good’ before teaching us the hardest lessons.  

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Meanings Archetype

Wheel of Fortune Archetype

It was hard to put Wheel of Fortune into an archetype box, but I feel like it best fits into the ‘outlaw’ archetype. Others may disagree, but there’s something very liberal, free thinking and – like we said in the astrological section, expansive – about the energy this Tarot card gives off. 

The outlaw is a liberator and so is the Wheel of Fortune in many ways. The main being that we can no longer keep our hands on the wheel, we have to let it go and spin as it wants to spin. The wheel decides, not us, liberating us from a need to control.