Absolutist thinking is a vicious falsehood, creates only confusion.
Pentacles in the minor arcana represent physical progress. Cups represent gathering, the first mystery of the heart. They are the suit in the minor arcana of the personal life in contrast to the physical or mental, and then wands which are often shown as torches. Wands symbolize the inner fire, inspiration and spirit, and its cycle is defined by the numerological progression.
The major arcana are the big players. The broad sweeping forces in life. The context of which the whole cycle of progress takes place. So if I draw the world, it’s the archetype of the world. Promethean effort. All intuitive meanings of the world as symbol, and often times a single card or a small series will come up in readings routinely. These are significators, cards connected to the seeker getting the reading. Like for me death, the devil, and the tower. So they are foundational to a person’s makeup versus circumstance. The major arcana are root. The spirit behind anything.
There are part of the minor arcana that I haven’t yet mentioned, the knight, the page, the king and queen. These represent peoples relationships to the spiritual elements and to each other. The page of each minor arcana suit is the “fool” in each suit. The student of the elements. The beginners mind as it relates to that realm. The knight is the journeyman. The actor on that stage will generally show the characteristics of that element pretty clearly. Like in a reading I recently did, the knight of wands came up.
The king and queen are like the emperor and empress of the major arcane, and like the tantric symbolism the principle of imminence and the principle of energy, though people often get the images reversed. The principle of energy is symbolized by the feminine. Potential expressing itself in a feeding supportive way. Thus if a querrant asks if something has potential, the empress is like Gaia and the answer is yes. The emperor is the principle of imminence, emerging form. Even science discovered that gender is dictated by the male contribution to conception. The default gene to an ova is x, always x. When the emperor emerges the path is set, decisions are made and things are in action. Like Jupiter it restricts.
Each card of the major arcana is a whole lesson in itself, but again it is often misinterpreted. The lovers card represents partnerships of all kinds not just romance. It’s the working in cooperation. The devil card often scares people, but they fail to study it. In the devil, the lovers are still there chained to pillars. The devil is the reality of the self. The scary reality we avoid that often makes us fall out with the world and each other. It isn’t evil, it happens. The devil card is more like the concept of the Roman daemon, a teaching or correcting spirit. Same as it is in Japanese belief.
The tarot also incorporates astrological lore. It is heavy with it actually and an easy way to remember the governing planet for a sign is to remember the tarot image. In the card known as the sun there is a Christ child image, the fool reborn and a lion. Leo is governed by the sun. In the moon card there is much abstract and sort of spooky symbolism, but there is also a crab and a scorpion. Both Cancer and Scorpio are governed by the moon.
These connections serve a reason. The star is the omen of the birth of the Christ child, the reborn god and it’s the symbol of fate. That fact that in the long run balance is kept. In the cards judgement there is an angelic figure and a star in the background representing the culmination of fate. Not only of one person, but of us all. As they say, ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee. It is ultimately more spooky than the death card.
In the death card, a death figures stand on a road and examples of humanity are before death. Death represents that change comes to all no matter the state in life. Death is the card of change and equalization. If it comes up it usually means something is over in someone’s life and a new door or opportunity is open. They are starting over and everything is equal.
The tower represents hubris. Have you heard the phrase “the best laid plans of mice and men”? The tower represents that principle of impermanence without temperance that unless you prepare to change creates imbalanced results. You can’t stand on one foot your whole life. How “bad” the tower is, is based on the context of the reading.
The hanged man is the crucified god. It’s vision without seeming power. When the hanged man arises the person is a witness to the mystery of life.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.