The Hermits eyes are closed symbolizing introspection, listening to the inner voice. This inner voice, according to Julian Jaynes in his book The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind, was the voice of the Gods and ancestors commonly listened to by our ancient forebears.
The jackal headed figure in the background is s synthesis of Wepwawet and Anubis. Wepwawet as “Opener of the Ways” and Anubis our protector on the journey. Depicting the entity behind the Hermit symbolises the entity communicates through our subconscious.
It could be construed after reading my notes on the The Hierophant that “Opener of the Ways” is a quality of that card because opening and becoming aware have a correlation symbolically. However, the Hierophant is the registering of phenomenon occurring only.