The Fool

Upright/Well Dignified: The Fool is that moment of innocence just before something begins. Without a care in the world, the Fool is untouched by a lot of the troubles of the world. It’s not surprising that people see the Fool as uneducated. Whether or not the Fool is uneducated isn’t the question. The question is that of experience, which is where the Fool can sometimes seem to come up empty. While this might seem like a bad thing, bear in mind that the Fool has yet to learn a lot of the bad habits that come with experience. The problem is, a lot of the good habits aren’t there either.

In many ways, the Fool’s path isn’t mapped out. While there might be ideas as to where the Fool wants to go, the first steps to getting there haven’t been taken and the Fool is reliant on instinct and the kindness of strangers. While this might work with some situations, there are times when the Fool will need to become something more. This is why the Fool is numbered zero in many decks. The Fool, while initially placed at the beginning of many Major Arcana commentaries, is able to insert himself into anything else and act as a catalyst for something more. Sometimes he Fool will remain as a Fool, other times the Fool will move on to become something else entirely.

This is a card of optimism. There are times when you need to let the inner child come out to play and the Fool is always at the foreground of that process. The Fool is a master of looking at things in a light that only putting old hurts and biases to sleep for a while, which can be worlds of useful if you want to see the world in a different light.

 

Reversed/Ill Dignified: The Fool is extremely good at ignoring things, which with a reversed Fool is a very bad sign. There  are often all kinds of warnings about something that you’re refusing to acknowledge for fear of making it real. All this will do, ultimately, is create a more intense shock when what you’ve been trying not to see passes and an extra side order of lowered self esteem for not letting yourself see what you kinda knew was already there. The best way to right this situation is to be honest with yourself and acknowledge that there is something that you don’t want to see, but need to in order to move past it.

There are times when the innocence talked about in the upright Fool is about to be lost in one sense or another. Looking at the cards around the Fool can give you a good idea of what exactly is coming. The Death card being nearby can be a good sign of a potentially transformative experience, but one that’s resisted due to the Fool being reversed. The Devil combined with the reversed Fool is a sign that the Fool is resisting change for the sake of an indulgence or vice that will be lost.

Hanging on to naivety is a common theme for a reversed Fool as I’ve just shown, but it’s usually easily turned upright with the recognition of the choice to be willfully ignorant. All that’s necessary from there is for the Fool to make a decision one way or another, rather than not making any decision at all and blaming the world for the issues arising.

The Sun

Upright/Well Dignified: The Sun is one of those cards that always seems so damned happy! This is a card full of optimism and hope for the future. All up, a “best possible outcome” card for all involved. Should you find yourself with a simple yes or no question, the Sun card making an appearance is a definite yes. The sheer amount of positive energy that comes from this card can be overwhelming as there is often a lot of assertive (occasionally outright aggressive) energy that appears with it.

Many times, the Sun is about clear perception. The kind of perception that leaves little in the current moment to the imagination, although what it shows you can lead your imagination into new and interesting places, much like the Star. If you are unsure about whether or not you’re seeing things clearly, the Sun will confirm that you are indeed seeing things the way that they are. If you are wondering if an opportunity that has arisen is going to bear fruit, the answer will be yes, so don’t waste any time going for it.

In readings where there is a focus on communication, the Sun tells you that things are being understood clearly and what you’re being told is the truth. Should you be in the process of looking for information on something, you will not only find the information, but you’ll also find yourself understanding more than initially expected.

As the rising and setting of the actual sun is one of the few constants in the average human’s life, the Sun card also stands for new beginnings, as no matter what happens to us, the sun will always rise in the morning on a new day, full of hope and opportunity for more joy.

Reversed/Ill Dignified: When the Sun card is reversed, there is a good chance that while you are able to see everything that’s going on, the conclusion that you are coming to is probably the incorrect one. Having all of the information and being able to recognise the right answer when it’s right in front of your face aren’t the same thing after all. When you have the Sun combined with the Moon, the information that you have may not be as correct as you’d like to believe, even possibly placed there to lead you to an incorrect conclusion. Alternatively, the information may be correct, but is of no use to what it is that you truly want to know.

The Sun can have a dazzling effect, showing you so much that it doesn’t really need to do anything as you’re still reeling from what you’ve been shown. Think of a salesman that talks up something to the point of it being totally unbelievable. You accept what he says, only to find out later that while he was technically telling the truth, there is a certain amount of disappointment that comes with the difference between what you were told and what you thought you were told becoming apparent.

Another common theme with the reversed Sun card is lethargy and apathy. For some reason the energy of the Sun simply isn’t being felt and as a result, you feel like your “Get Up and Go” has simply got up and left. For the reversed Sun to appear, this isn’t going to be a short-term thing and needs to be dealt with as soon as possible before you find yourself falling into habits that remain long after the problem has righted itself. Laziness or finding yourself simply no longer caring when you know that you should can be habits that are extremely hard to break and need to be dealt with before they stop simply holding you back and start defining you.

 

 

Ten of Cups

Upright/Well Dignified: …and the man and his wife and their family all lived happily ever after…

This is what the Ten of Cups talks about. The opportunity to live the happy end of the Disney fairy tale. Once that period of the Nine of Cups has passed and the waiting is over, the Ten comes into view with the things you’ve been wanting from the start. Very similar to the Ten of Pentacles, the Ten of Cups talks about the end of a cycle, where there is a new cycle beginning with the previous cycle ending on a high note.

The Ten of Cups is about the relationships formed starting to bear fruit and all of the good things that will be flowing from them. Should this card make an appearance in a reading about job prospects, you can almost put money on being part of a good work environment in the near future. In many respects, the Ten of Cups is about community and the positive effects of the relationships that come from being an active part of yours.

Here, in the Ten of Cups, is where your emotional needs are met and you finally find yourself sated. Enjoy it. It’s most likely been earned and you’re in a secure enough place that it can be savoured. It’s also a card that allows good things to flow from you and on to other people, so feel free to spread the good luck around.  It’s highly unlikely that it will take anything away from you.

Reversed/Ill Dignified: The Ten of Cups reversed is often asking you one simple question. Why are you still depressed about where you are in life? In many places, the question of “what else do you need?” should eventually come. Often, the answer is nothing. It’s just the desires that are not being met. Here though, there is still a bit of good news. You have all of your needs met and you are in a prime place to start looking at what it is that you WANT. With a secure base to work from, you can figure out what it is that you want and work in those directions.

Sometimes though, having everything that you need is wasted on some people. You might need to ask yourself as to whether or not you’re one of them. Self-sabotage can be a common theme in a person’s life, especially if things are good enough that they can indulge it. With a reversed Ten of Cups, there is a very real chance that you may end up losing what you’ve spent so  much time attaining simply by poisoning it with negativity. If things are going to go wrong, they will go wrong, but looking for things to go wrong when there’s no chance for it to happen is just wasting time that could be put to much better use.

Occasionally there is a point where you’re deluding yourself and you need to look at how things really are in your life. The answer is probably not going to be nearly as good as you’re pretending it is and you’ve reached a point where this is becoming harmful. It’s time to stop pretending that things are fine when they’re not and talk to someone that can help with the situation. Things aren’t at their worst, but are on the way downhill and it’s time to address them before they become overwhelming.

Ten of Pentacles/Disks

Upright/Well Dignified: The Ten of Pentacles is the card that says “and they all lived happily ever after,” something that it shares with the Ten of Cups. Both cards also talk about attainment, although here, with the Ten of Pentacles, the attainment is a lot more material and, for want of a better phrase, solid. There is a solid foundation for new projects that you are able to build on that will continue to bring good things to you, due to the hard work and diligence previously invested.

Come to think of it, invested is a very good word. Some sort of investment that is going to be paying off long-term is a perfect example of what this card is all about. It is a card about delivering and over-delivering  on a promise because you are in a position to do so and have reached a level of maturity where you recognise the value of being in a position where you are able to give. This kind of security is another important aspect of this card. The prosperity brought about by past efforts and in many cases, good luck have delivered you into a place where you are able to feel like you are finally secure.

It’s interesting to note that this card in the Rider-Waite-Smith tarot also brings with it a warning. The warning comes in the form of a tower in the background. This tower tells us that everything we do lays the foundation for what comes next. While there are plenty of things that take us by surprise, how we address these things is governed by learned behaviours and unconscious responses. By recognising these things, we have the choice as to what foundations we lay for what comes next.

Reversed/Ill Dignified: The reversed Ten of Pentacles has a habit of telling people that they simply don’t realise what they’ve got. There are things that they either have or have access to that are not being put into use in any way, shape or form. When reversed, this is a card of wasted potential or wasted materials that could be put to much better use. Look at what you have around you and see what you have to work with, rather than think of yourself as useless because things aren’t working out in one particular direction.

Another common theme with the reversed Ten of Pentacles is that of misunderstanding of what is actually there. Most people know a group or family that seem happy from the outside but aren’t always good at keeping up the illusion of happy families. The idea of perfection that each person has is personal, but there are times when there is somebody trying to live up to all of them. What this leads to is a delusion that things are fine when a person’s world is falling down around their ears. That tower in the background was built on shoddy foundations and is now crumbling, breaking down everything it touches.

Finally, we have the theme of insecurity. While everything is in place for things to be the “Happily Ever After” you always wanted, there’s a good chance that you’re stressing about something that is unlikely at best to come to pass. There are situations where the problems expected become self-fulfilling prophecies. While the potential provided by the upright Ten of Pentacles is still there, the direction in which they are used can easily become disastrous if the perspective is destructive.

 

Three of Cups

Upright/Well Dignified: With the esoteric title of this card being Abundance, it’s not difficult to see this card as being one of the more pleasant cards to appear in a reading. The card is one that seems to be all about the bounty which you have either received or are about to and how that’s going to affect you. Make no mistake though, this is a celebratory card if ever there was one. The Rider-Waite-Smith deck has three women, surrounded by fruit and with their cups raised in celebration. For whatever reason this is, there is a party happening in the card.

Another common meaning applied to this card is that of bonding. Although there are usually women shown having a celebration, there is no reason why this card can’t also refer to male bonding or for that matter, reconnecting with old friends. This is often a card about how celebration can be used to strengthen both individuals and communities.  The celebration taking place isn’t just an average party though. This is the result of previous work and the groundwork being placed leading to the fruitfulness in this card.

There are certain circumstances when, if surrounded by Cups cards and the Empress also making an appearance, this card can be hinting at a pregnancy. It’s not a common occurrence, but the energy in this card is that which, for want of a better phrase, keeps on giving. This card is also a reminder that nothing happens in a vacuum and there are always consequences to actions.

Reversed/Ill Dignified: This cup, reversed, can often be best described as uncontrolled growth. Cancer is a good symbol for this as this particular growth will not exactly make your life better. Things may very well be spinning out of control in a way that may be very difficult to stop, let alone reverse. Foolish mistakes that have been made will need to be rectified as soon as possible, or they will create unexpected and possibly even dangerous results, both in the short term and in the long term.

There are times when the Three of Cups reversed is a reference to growth that has, for some reason, cut off completely. This lack of growth means that whatever was fuelling things has been removed, or that a key component in something is no longer there. This means that in order for things to go the way that they were meant to go, somebody needs to pull their finger out and figure what exactly is missing.

There is another aspect to this reversed card. That aspect is that of isolation. While the upright card talks about the strength drawn from being part of a community, the reversed Three of Cups talks about the emotional drain that comes from being isolated from others. This is a sign that in order to right this card, it’s necessary to pull yourself out of wherever you’ve been hiding and find your way back into the sun. There is a strong sense of desolation that comes with this card reversed, as while isolation in many circumstances is a good thing, the circumstance talked about by the reversed Three of Cups is not one of them. This desolation is best broken by familiar friends and good times. If these things aren’t available, just do something that will bring you into contact with people.

 

Justice/Adjustment

Upright/Well Dignified: The Justice card making an appearance means that something that has been unbalanced is going to be righted. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always mean good news for whoever pulled the card. Justice, also known as Adjustment, is a card about being called to answer for your actions and accepting the results,whether these are positive results or negative consequences. This is not an easy card to pull when you aren’t sure where you stand on a situation, although it can be a call to pay attention to how things seem to be balanced. This card can sometimes be seen as a symbol of “the convention ” where there are certain standards that need to be met in order for things to ideal. This isn’t surprising as the goddess shown in many tarot decks carrying the scales and the sword is Themis, the Greek goddess of convention.

In many examples of the Justice tarot card, Justice carries both a sword and a pair of scales. The scales are representative of the need to balance the oppositional aspects of things in order to maintain relative balance and harmony. The sword, often overlooked, is a little more complex. Where the scales are a tool used to measure, the sword is to put that measurement into action. The sword is an active tool of discrimination, not in the negative sense, but in the sense of cutting away the unnecessary to show what’s truly needed to get the best possible result in a situation. This card, being about convention, can be especially true in many social settings.

Reversed/Ill Dignified: Some sort of injustice has occurred and it is being ignored for one reason or another. The most common reason that it’s not being addressed is that it’s not being made apparent. It might take a little digging, but things that should follow a particular pattern or plan are acting out of their nature and there is some sort of imbalance that is stopping them from finding their way back to their normal state. When there is a reversed Justice card, it’s time to look at the facts of a situation, especially if there are things that seem a little contradictory, or even just a little out of sorts with the rest of the picture. Whether the scales have been tampered with or the sword has been misused, the information isn’t leading to the correct conclusion and the entire balance of the situation is being thrown out of sorts.

Another possibility is that something that is seen as a convention is being challenged. The issue here is not that conventional wisdom is being questioned. The issue is that the piece of, for want of a better word, normalcy that is being questioned is there for a reason and the issue being taken is one of convenience, rather than that of justice. A person’s sense of entitlement may be getting the better of them and it may be necessary to help them reign it in before it gets them, or someone else hurt.

There is also the possibility that the natural order of something has been tampered with and processes that once ran almost on autopilot are now imbalanced in ways that are less than constructive. The metaphorical wrench in the works that causes havoc is what is being talked about here, from deliberate sabotage of a project to a simple miscommunication that creates a butterfly effect.

Prince/Knight of Cups

Upright/Well Dignified

As a person: Of all of the tarot court cards, as well as the Major Arcana, if you were looking for the “knight in shining armour” presented in fairy tales, this particular prince would be it. The Prince of Cups is the emotionally driven character that heads off to rescue the princess or whatever great task needs doing. He’s an idealist and doesn’t give up easily on things and especially not on people. Once he dedicates himself to a cause, he’ll follow it to the end, sweet or bitter.

This Prince is a dreamer, who often dreams big, but will seldom act on his dreams unless he’s either pushed or can make the connection between what he knows to be right and what he dreams of. It can be difficult, but he has the potential to go far as long as he makes the effort to keep why he’s doing something close in his thoughts and in his emotions.

As a situation:  Every so often there will come a time when thinking something through has driven you a little mad with no solution in sight. It might be time to look at how you’re honestly feeling about what’s going on. In this particular occasion, your thoughts have gotten you to a point that may feel like you’re in a cul-de-sac, delivering you to a point where all you can do is reverse and hope for the best. The alternative is to look at how your emotions are affecting your thoughts and use this new information to make a more useful decision.

Every so often you’ll find yourself in a situation where your head, the one processing all off the facts is leaning you in one direction, while your heart is trying to pull you in another. In this instance, if the head is able to be stopped in it’s tracks by your emotional state, it’s time to start listening to what the heart has to say on things.

Reversed/Ill Dignified

As a person: In the reversed Prince of Cups, we have a manipulative bastard. There is no simpler way of putting this. The reversed Prince of Cups is able to spot a person’s emotional weak points and play to them to get what he wants, whatever that may be. He can play the weak person when it gets him the attention that he wants, or the hero when there’s a reward that suits him. The reversed Prince’s nature is fluid in that it becomes what it needs to, but tends to poison all around him in the process. He generally can’t be trusted with anything of consequence unless it’s in his own interests to behave in a way that will ensure success for everybody.

As a situation: When the reversed Prince of Cups makes this kind of appearance, there’s a good chance that you’re being scammed out of something. Whether that means time, energy, love or whatever, you are almost definitely being used. Somebody is playing to your blind spots and hoping that you won’t noticed, but it’s affecting you in ways that nobody would expect. It might be time to look at what’s been going on in your life recently and see who’s been having an impact in which aspects of your life. There’s probably been a few unnecessary conflicts in your life recently that can be traced back to one individual that has either recently entered your life, or seems to have changed in a rather large way. It may be the time to recognise the more toxic of your friendships for what they are and cut some people loose before they hurt you further.

Prince/Knight of Wands

Upright/Well Dignified:

As a Person: Have you ever met someone with a brain who seems to have figured everything out while everyone else is still counting on their fingers how much of what? If you have, then there’s a chance that this person may be a Prince of Wands. The Prince’s brain works extremely fast, often giving him the answer he’s looking for quickly so that he can act on it. The issue isn’t the speed with which he comes to his conclusions, but whether or not the conclusions that this prince has come to are the right ones.

If there is one person that is likely to act before having all of the information, it’s this prince. That being said, if there is one person that is likely to act for what they understand to be the good of all concerned in a situation, it’s also this Prince. He doesn’t like people suffering and would, if he can, be the person that liberates them from it, due to nothing more than a need to see justice in action.

As a situation: In a movie, the Prince of Wands would be that fateful decision that leads to the climax. It’s the choice that leads to events either taking off or not doing so and the results either way. In all truth though, it’s usually the choice to act rather than not that this Prince represents. With the Prince of Wands appearing, it’s a sign that yes, things need to be put into motion, so make the choice to do so and then start doing something! This is a card that wants things moved along as fast as possible, so that things can be wrapped up and the next adventure can begin. This card is about getting as many beginnings as possible underway so that there are many more choices for later.

Reversed/Ill Dignified:

As A Person: The reversed Prince of Wands simply does not give a damn who gets hurt when he decides to do something and it doesn’t go as planned. The restlessness and need to be doing something takes over and carelessness follows, sometimes with painful results. Not the kind of person you want in charge.

When the Prince decides that it’s necessary, he can be an extremely good liar with the ability to elaborate on details to make him sound more convincing, especially when there’s something that he REALLY wants on the line. Whether guilt is felt depends on how well this Prince manages to justify himself, although when there’s remorse, it can be intense.

Sometimes the Prince of Wands isn’t thinking a hundred miles an hour. Sometimes he’s slowing himself down so that he can be understood. For a Prince of Wands, this can be anything from slightly frustrating to emotionally draining and sometimes even dangerous to the emotional wellbeing of this Prince.

As a situation: From the most basic perspective, the question is simple. Things need to be moving and yet they aren’t. Why not? The fuel to get projects started is there but for some reason things aren’t happening and somebody needs to step up to make the initial push. Things don’t happen by themselves and with a reversed Prince of Wands it may be a case of too much thought going into something and not enough actual action. It’s time to get things actually happening, rather than overthinking the possible outcomes.

Alternatively, there are times when things are happening but the energy is being spent in the wrong direction. It’s probably a good time to reign it in and look at where you’re really wanting to go.

The Moon

Upright/Well Dignified: One of the primary ways that the Moon card often gets read is as a card telling you to trust your intuition. The Moon is about a gentle illumination that lets your imagination fill in the details, which can be either a very good thing or a very bad thing, depending on the situation at hand. Often, when there are an abundance of less than favourable cards, it is a good sign that you’re projecting your fears onto what you don’t know yet and are acting on impulses based not on what you know, but what you’ve assumed that you know. The conclusions may not be false, but they are probably not entirely correct either. The key here is to be  objective about what is certain and what is conjecture on your part, or you might find yourself in hot water.

The Moon is also often about reflection on any number of things. Look to the cards surrounding the Moon as to what you might need to reflect on. When there are an abundance of a particular suit in a spread, it might be time to look at a particular aspect of your personality and how that might be affecting things. This can be especially strengthened by court cards of a suit making an appearance.

As well as these things, the Moon can be about those little niggling doubts and fears that often don’t get mentioned to anyone or get pushed to the back of the mind rather than get acknowledged. This is a card that says that these doubts and fears are playing a part in your life at the moment and that objectivity in a situation is going to be lost if you don’t pay attention to those things that stop you from acting in some situations, or overreacting in others.

Reversed/Ill Dignified: When the Moon is reversed, there is a good chance that things are indeed being reflected, but not in a way that gives you any real clarity. You  might be in a spot of bother and think that you have a way out, but you’ll find that you’re not so much dealing with the real issue as much as your perception of it. The difference between these two things can sometimes be huge and not easily recognised. The Moon can be a powerful mistress of misdirection, leading you along a path of logic that, while seemingly useful,may be more detrimental to things than you initially realise.

There are also times when you are being emotionally manipulated by somebody and the Moon can be an indicator of this when reversed. Being fed false information, or technically correct information that is being put to you in a way that will lead you to a particular conclusion is probable, especially if surrounded by Swords cards or Wands cards that indicate conflict between people.

One of the most common reasons for a reversed Moon card is that a person is ignoring the obvious in their life. By a lack of reflection, a querent could be ignoring the possibilities right in front of them. When the reversed Moon shows up it is a good time to step back and look at your life situation for a while as there is something important, or at leasy useful, that you’ve missed.

Page/Princess of Swords

Upright/Well defined-

As a person: This is a person that can turn planning into an art form, which can be a blessing or a curse, depending on the situation. With a tendency to be overly intellectual, their rapidly moving brain can figure out which situation needs attention first and can prioritize with the best of folks. The only large problem is that this is usually a person with a lack of real-world experience. While they seem to know an awful lot, this isn’t the same as having experienced a lot. They have a fantastic ability to find out what’s going on by asking all of the questions that will get to the heart of a matter very quickly. This can be both a blessing and a curse, depending on whether or not you’re the one being questioned. They can be ruthless in their questions, not because of any malice, but a desire to understand.

As a situation:  There’s planning in your near future when the Page of Swords appears. A lot of this planning will be the result of new information being brought to light in regards to a particular situation. Things that require a lot of communication are being focused on here and it is a good idea to focus on keeping communication open between peers.

A Page of Swords can often be an indication of a new discovery that will help put things together in a way that you might not have thought of before. While this discovery might be purely intellectual in nature, it will likely have some useful practical applications as long as you put it to use.

 

Reversed/Ill Dignified-

As a person: If you’ve talked to someone that seems to have all of the answers to all questions, but at the same time their life is fallig apart around them, then you’ve been talking to a reversed Page of Swords. This person often lives too far in their head to be of any practical use to most people, as even a sounding board needs to be quiet on occasion. In many situations they will have advice that they will assure you will work, despite the fact that they not only have no experience of a particular situation, nor the solution having worked at all.

There is also the possibility of a person clinging to a set of ideals or dogma as a way of dealing with something, despite knowing that this particular dogma or set of ideals is not true and not useful. This can be compared to a religious zealot that would rather die for their religion than admit a lack of belief.

As a situation: When trying to find some new information on a subject and a reversed Page of Swords shows up, I would suggest checking your sources as there is a good chance that the information that you’ve been provided with is false. Whether this is the result of a deliberate attempt to mislead you or a simple lack of fact-checking, it would not be a good idea to act on the information that you have been given.

With a lot of information coming in, there are times when it will be entirely the correct information, yet totally useless at the same time. Sometimes the answer to the questions that a person asks aren’t the same thing as what you really want to know and it might be a good time to look a little harder at the questions being asked, as they are not leading a person to what they really want to know.