Robin Wood, The Fool 0


Hello! First post in a study group - hope that is alright.

I loved reading everybody's comments.

I really like Robin's rendition of the Fool. The Fool is often one of the first cards I check when looking at a deck, and this one is really one of the reasons I got the Robin Wood deck.

I know that the book describes the Fool as a young blond man, and the Fool is typically shown as male; but often when I look at the card the youth seems female ~ or at least very feminine. Which goes along with Netzach's comment.

Other decks make it much more obvious that the Fool is walking off the cliff - here I feel less like that is what 'is happening' and more like it 'might happen'. I see that affecting how I respond to the card.

Somehow I frequently think about High School when I see the Fool card. Maybe that reflects more on me. :D


Greetings Briarfoote!

Hi Briarfoote,
So glad you're joining this study group. I look forward to your insight. I particularly like how you equated The Fool with high school days...indeed!!!
Cheers, Jenny


the Fool

First i have to say i'm a complete begginer, specially with this deck. Only have it for 1 day. 2nd, i have to sy this is really stopped: last post was in 2007...

I've read the other coments and i really like the interpretations from L'Etoile Netzach Julien Lewen and spinningspider.

When i look at the Fool, i see Joy and Happyness: for the music, the buterflys that follow and for the dog, that seems to be dancing.
I see Variety of Options/Choices, because he can go anywhere he wants, just needs to chose the way.
Balace, (like Netzach said), because he is on is tiptoes, like when we walk in the night and don't want to make noise.
But also a Warning, because is on the edge of the cliff, he is aware of it (because he is on is tiptoes), but he is not looking at it. So, he must be carefull.


("he'" can also be a she)
A frivolous person, carefree, enjoying his existence, he is innocent, has no bad or nasty side. He doesn’t have a set goal, but that’s okay as he’s free and without impediments. (just dawned on me that the frivolous bit doesn't have to be visible on the outside, it can also be that his feelings are frivolous, exuberant.)
It shows a fresh start, all options and paths are open, so he can go in any direction. He doesn’t have a problem choosing, as he doesn’t have a clear, set path yet, so whichever way he decides to go, it’s good. He’s happy and cheerful, enjoying his journey (the goal is not important yet). He’s not alone, he doesn’t feel lonely either, he’s got his mate, the dog and he gets (and feels) the support from above (the butterflies). He simply enjoys being and his freedom.
Wherever he came from, he cannot go back, that’s really in the past, over. Going back is simply not an option.
He knows very well what he’s doing, he’s not going to fall of the cliff, he’s very much aware of where he’s standing. Okay, he’s started this new thing with an open mind and no, he doesn’t know where it will lead him, but he’s not a nitwit; he’s learned a lot in the past and he’s got all that wisdom and knowledge readily available (in his backpack).
Him standing on his tiptoes first made me think "He's cannot be well grounded" but then again: he is not wobbly at all, but seems to be standing quite stable. And it does take either (foolish) guts or a very strong sense of physique to stand on tiptoes near the edge of a cliff. I don't feel he's walking towards is, though. I think he's standing still, it feels to me that he's greeting the world with his music from a well chosen, high spot. The dog isn't walking either, but happily standing up in the air. Makes me think of an uplifting feeling, both the man and the dog on tiptoes so to speak.
I haven't got a clue, but is this an Air card? Based on the upwards motion, the flute (music), the swirling ribbons on his backpack and of course the butterflies.
That's what I got from this card.




I really like this card, it is very cheery.
The fool stands on tip toe at he edge of a cliff. Getting a better view or dancing? I don't get the feel that he is being careless and might walk off like I see in other decks. I see a care-free-ness about him. Youth, innocence. He travels not on a path but is making his own way in the world. It is not about the destination, it is about the trip, the experiences he will have along the way.
He has picked up a red feather to put in his wreath of roses in his hair. A souvenir? The pack is small: Short trip, few possessions, or few needs?


From my blog here were my impressions and thoughts on the card:

My eyes took in the rich color of the image: a beautiful clear day. Our 'seeker,' dressed in colorful clothing is a joyous being: filled with the light of innocence. As the explorer sets forth, music fills the air, tunes from within played upon a flute, pressed to a smiling mouth. This is a giveaway from the heart. Beyond are snow covered peaks, where the Land of the North (Color White)is the destination - The Place Of Knowledge. In closer proximity are the green hills, lush with a harvest, ripe with lessons for our wandering minstrel. Having left the material world behind, traveling light, with the barest necessities, our adventurer stands at the farthest edge of the East Realm - The Place of Beginnings - upon the threshold of the kingdom of higher learning to the West - a Wonderland of Transformation.

The pathfinder has a faithful, yet watchful companion pup - akin, in this moment, to a seeing eye dog. While carefree, it appears there is every intention to go forth like 'a leaf driven by the wind,' still lighthearted enough to go with the flow (like the stream which meanders across the land below) and face what lies ahead, eager to meet all who live and travel upon the road. It is a momentous occasion, given greater weight by the presence of Butterfly Medicine, an indication that a metamorphosis is quite inherent.

Thus the odyssey begins.


I love the wreath in the Fool's hair, the motley clothes, the rainbow of ribbons on the backpack. Freshness and variety! This is one person who will not be bound by convention, nor by any need to stick to one thing. This could have positive or negative results. (I have a hard time making decisions; can you see why I identify here?:D)


Great to see your thoughts Shiresun!!
I really like this expression: "filled with the light of innocence".


Moonson said:
Great to see your thoughts Shiresun!!
I really like this expression: "filled with the light of innocence".

Thank you Moonson! :)

I finally have finished my 'beginning' work with The Fool. I wrote 3 more journal entries on my perception in comparison with traditional as well as the author's ideas for this character:

As I began to study the card, one of the things I brought into my room was a work sheet. It has spaces for things like the Name of the Card, Section, Suit, Element. I filled in the name of the card and the number assigned to it. Then there was a section for First Impression. From the handwritten journal I'd used during my first meeting and introduction to this card, I jotted down, in brief:

The beauty and happiness of innocence; The Journey begins (the seeker is facing west from my perspective) and my last impression noted was Open to adventure.

Before I go further, I'd like to say that while I read that the card is traditionally called The Fool, or for some The Hero, I felt the depiction of the subject of the card was neither that of a fool, nor a hero but simply a seeker. So that is how I've chosen to refer to this card. I don't feel innocence or even being carefree makes anyone a fool. At the same time, they have not yet achieved hero status, though I figure the word hero simply refers to the individual poised within the card. The potential for both fool and hero lies within all of us, and perhaps resides very happily there, two sides of the same coin.

To continue, there was a section on the worksheet which was about the card imagery. What I noted here was:

The edge of the cliff is the threshold to learning; the mountain peaks in the distance are the destination, and being white, describe the North direction. The North when reached holds the Enlightenment which the one who journies through the deck attains through the trials and tribulations of lessons on the way. I noted right away the presence of the butterflies which in The Medicine Way refers to metamorphosis and transformation on a general level, and the intricacies of it are specific to the stage of metamorphosis or transformation in which a person stands. Since The Fool is the beginning (0 = a blank canvas) it would be the egg stage. There is only one way to go and that is UP, even as the character in the card stands near the edge of a cliff. Every journey has rises and falls. The Seeker can tumble head first off the cliff, or can deliberately make their way down the cliff, having heeded the companion guide and continue from where ever those steps have taken them.

The insights section, I filled in with the words: Beginning a journey with an open mind and purity of heart. Not knowing what lies ahead, but moving forward without trepidation.

Of course this would make the keywords: Beginnings, Openness and Innocence.

I did not fill in any further information.

However, one thing which occurred to me as I ended my work is that the imagery included music which gave me the idea that the cards whether character or events, or places, could have a song which defined the atmosphere of the card.

For The Fool the song which immediately sprang to mind was Sweet Surrender by John Denver.

The last part which I will write about is the meaning from the book which I bought for this deck.

The next two parts follow, which I am combining in one post :)


I entitled this journal entry: Who's The Fool?

I've just finished reading the meaning of the 0, THE FOOL card as Robin explains it. The description of what everything means is obviously greater than I was able to see. I realize, of course, that I must not have been in school when they taught about symbolism. OR, let's face it, my life has given me many experiences which tend to simply change the perspective.

As I've implied right from the start, I am this seeker and I do not have the knowledge of what these truths can hold. I can see, and I must not judge myself for this, that I have quite limited sight. Like the seeker at this point, I know little more than I want to merrily roll along and care not for the problems the next step could bring into my life. This is very much chaos. OH..... duh... chaos. Does this fool not actually represent chaos and the journey then would be finding the patterns in the chaos....

Hmmm... I DO like the non-linear thought of this... oh oh oh recall the Gaian Tarot??? The past talked directly about non-linear thinking... and I am standing upon the threshold (are not we all?) of the past/present/future every moment?

About the masculine/feminine aspects being switched... might I suggest the Marriage of Spirit?

SO, who IS the fool? *raises hand* :)

After doing much comparison work, I've come up with a tentative list of what I would use when this card shows up in a spread:

innocence and purity,
imminant transformation.

Still, there are some things within the book's interpretation, I'd add to mine. While I feel 'peril' is too strong a word, I would definitely include pay attention.

Lack of experience is good because when we are beginning things, we do lack the experience of those who have been working at it for years.

I would convey a need for caution.

If difficulties lie in the seeker's mind, it would be part and parcel of learning, and by making mistakes, that is truly the only way to learn. This is a thought that comes from a book I'd read many years ago, which speaks of how the educational system's proclivity to not allow mistakes, to make them seem bad only places obstacles to learning.

Much of the symbology regarding the colors, design and style of dress, was something I did not know. However I do appreciate that is her way of showing that he is a lover.

Might he be hurt in the end? Might not we all? Isn't it a matter of how we handle the hurts in life?. When one is carefree, and this is not a child in this picture, even as he may be young; this is a man, who has had experiences which led him to be upon this path. It would seem, unless we make his story one of having been sheltered (boy in a bubble) up to the point where he left the safety of home, then it's not likely he has not met with some bad experiences. I feel he is one of those people who picks themself up, dusts themself off and keeps on going. That fits more with one who chooses a carefree life. Being carefree implies choice, even if in the most general of terms.

He might even be somewhat mischievous with the switch in sides of his leggings. Though, he might also be more in touch with his feminine side, as I suggested above regards 'The Marriage of Spirit."

However the Seeker has ended up at the bottom of this cliff, he continues on his way, and next we meet the first #1 person on this, the Seeker's Journey.