9 Cups

This month I am going to present you with my musings on the 9 cups, happiness.

9 cups

This is not a card questioned all that often being positive so many times when it arises and unlike the RWS deck this card doesn’t have the ‘smugness’ about it. It does indeed portray solid dependable happiness, the feeling of your life being structured such that things are flowing and people help you as you need and you extend yourself to others easily and effortlessly. It is not joy though, happiness is a great feeling, but joy does have something more ethereal to it and though your life is flowing and things are working well there is a sense of sameness and somehow a lack of spirit to it. It is good for a time or as a background, but as a continued state it can feel somewhat lifeless. I am happy enough, but where is the challenge, the growth and the joy of change and transformation from one moment to the next so it is a card like all others with its downside. However when I see this in a reading it is usually very positive and adds the positive impact of the other cards around it. The exception being 4 cups which also carries the energy of stagnation out of excessive comfort and together these cards can indicate a real need for risk to come into your life.

The card is Jupiter in Pisces so as such is all about extending oneself effortlessly to help others, and to help situations around one. Spiritual service and the highest love are represented by this card. As we offer to others we receive at the same time. All struggles of need of love and personal gain are over and we can see and accept the love in all things, situations and people. However it can show up on the negative side if surrounded by more difficult cards as indicating the feelings of ‘happy happy’ – being out of touch with reality and not acknowledging the shadow side within oneself, others and situations before us. If we face the truth then true happiness can be found, joy, true joy, in effect can be the outcome. However we need to accept the truth of the situation to truly experience the joy potential of this card.

In the majority of cases this card is great news when it turns up in your reading, you have achieved a good sense of happiness in your life or the situation enquired about. I also have seen this card represent networking successfully in a business reading, and really forming the client base you need on the basis of honesty, truth and the ideals you stand for rather than some kind of temporary connection through hope of all problems being solved. It’s the soft sell ideal.

In a personal sense a group of supportive friends around you is likely where each has each others growth and highest interests at heart – so a community rather than everyone being the of the same opinion, each can extend themselves to want the best for the others even if that is different from what one would choose for oneself. In many ways this is the highest form of love.

Queen of Cups

She is watery water, so is a strong emotional character. The queen here is mirrored in a pool beneath her – what you see is what you get, as above so below, she is a woman who will not hide her feelings but expresses herself as she is in the moment and then is is gone – She has a maturity about her when it comes to emotions and knows that emotions held in are only going to fester – rather than this she expresses herself and lets it go. Yet despite this it can be hard to fathom this woman she is shrouded in mystery and you can only just make out her face, she is a woman of deep intuitive understanding and has known her own depths – because of this she may be a mystery to many people – yet her understanding and empathy for others is very high. She is a mother type and nurtures all those around her, instinctively knowing what is needed when.

Her power comes from her self awareness and self acceptance and she is comfortable in emotional territory – nothing phasing or scaring her as she knows all she sees in another is also within her. Using her own map she can help others charter theirs.

She reflects others in her behaviour and presents people often with a mirror for their own selves. As she does so she offers an opportunity to others to be as aware as she is herself. Many do not take it. But their response does to affect her – she may therefore be seen as a master of illusions, and sometimes you may not know who she really is in herself she reflects you so well. But none of this matters to the Queen – for she knows herself and that is all that is required – to those who know who they are they can understand and see of the queen too. As both their own reflection and also the truth that she is deep down.

She is someone who is psychic, mediumistic, and understands the symbols of the other planes. She can be lost in them if she has not healed her own psychology. She is receptive and feminine, loving and patient. There is no rush to action only being and experiencing the world as it unfolds. Whatever that may hold.

Prince of Swords

This month I am going to look and chat about the card – Prince of Swords. This card has many different aspects and as a court card can both represent a person with certain qualities as well as the querants own self, qualities they are expressing and also events around the querant.

Prince Swords

As an event this card is talking about cutting off from someone or some people. The idea being that you need to be following your own path and not be influenced by others who are not actually in your shoes. It is time to break patterns of behaviour that leave you feel trapped and either unable to move forward or any movement made is difficult as you are pulled in many directions. This aspect can be seen easily through the figures that are trying to pull the chariot – each in a different direction the chariot not moving very much at all. You are in charge though and have the sword of discernment to cut those free who are going in a different direction to you – so you can put all your energy into your own goals and thus move forward much faster.

On an internal level these diverse pulls can be coming from different aspects of oneself each wanting a different thing and when this card comes up it is time to make some clear decisions about what your direction really is and to heal voices or decisions from the past that may be trying to stop you.

In relationships if this card comes up it is very likely that the relationship it refers to is needing to split as each is pulling in a different direction, sometimes there is hope of resolution if both parties can speak openly about their direction and agree to differ and not hinder the other from their pathway, however more often than not it has come to a point where each person has learned what they needed to from the other and it is time to go separate ways.

This is a swords card and in a person of youthful age, so represents someone who is logical and clear thinking – who will find solutions to problems and no longer allow blocks to get in the way of their progress. Obstacles can be removed by applying logic and will to the issue. However this is the healing power of the card, often when first active in your life there will be a sense of jumping about from one goal to the next – one place to the next not quite committing to anything and dissipating your energies – however what is called for is to not please everyone and to get clear about what of the myriad of possibilities really speaks to your heart. Usually it is actually quite clear what way is the way to go, but it is the fear of cutting off options that prevents that decision from taking place. This card suggests it is time and you will lose nothing by letting go of the paths you know are not the right ones right now.

Rational thinking can be a curse as well as a gift, You can dream ideas and plans but do nothing with any of them, get stuck in analysis whilst never getting to the emotional core of the situation. The application of what has heart and meaning to you is needed to fully use the discrimination and mental activity of this card and character. Often whether this is available can be seen from the surrounding cards.

The yellow suggests mental powers and possibly self-esteem coming from recognition of intelligence, the green is the desire – the drive – the feeling of loving each idea that arises, and also the idea of using love as a force to decide between pathways which each bring their positive qualities to you. As you immerse yourself in a deep love for who you are your decision becomes clearer.

Living With a Card

Often when we read tarot for ourselves with the Thoth, we have a position in the spread which is the main focal point – it might be the outcome card, it might be the ‘card to focus on’ it might be the ‘key’. Whichever it is the card that we are most drawn to and seek answers from. Sometimes in readings this card is the very one that we understand the least – or in this particular reading it seems not to provide the direct answers we usually gain or expect. This is a good time to build your tarot knowledge, both in a traditional way and in a very personal way.

These, perhaps confusing, yet central cards hold a key for us. There are a number of different ways to approach this:

  • the academic study
  • the meditation
  • the journey
  • the holding the card with you through life

I want to focus on the last of these here this month, but before I do I will briefly talk about the others to give you an idea of what I am not meaning with the last one.

The first is to go to the books you have, the online resources you have access to and to read all anyone has ever seen in the card and go with those statements and concepts you have an intuitive reaction to. You are starting to gain a deeper understanding of the card and how it relates to you specifically in your situation and you are adding to your remembered bank of card meanings.

In this section I would also include studying the things that have been associated with the card by the deck creator, so you may also be going to references about the astrological associations of the Thoth card you have, the Kabbalistic position of the card, the meanings of the sephiroth or path connected to the card etc. Perhaps even looking further into that into the associations from the Kabbalah correspondences.

All of this can lead to great depth and often when we experience a one of card’s many meanings it stays with us much more strongly than others we have just read about. So picking out the parts that you feel a ah-ha with of a click is a powerful way of learning.

Then we come to the second way of working with the card – to do a traditional meditation on the card – sitting quietly and still in front of the card and allowing the different parts of the card to draw you and to wash over you – once quiet within and at peace with the card then you can allow intuitive understanding and inner wisdom to arise within the session. Also within this there is the Inner Discursive method of meditation where you can allow yourself to first describe the images you see within the card and the to allow yourself to think about what this image means and what other concepts and situations also are connected with the image.

There is then the creative visualisation, pathworking or journeying technique where you prepare yourself for an inner journey in your usual manner and then allow yourself to walk directly into the card, initially seeing some or all of the pictures on the card but as you progress you see the environments change and you may travel on a very personal journey into different terrain even with the same card on separate occasions. This gains you intuitive insight as you assess and reflect on your journey after you return you ordinary consciousness.

Then we come to allowing the card to work with you.

In many ways this allows all the above to process within you – but it can also be done on its own. You look at the image and see it clearly in your mind’s eye, then you take it with you in your mind as you go about your day-to-day activities. You set your unconscious mind to work on the issue of finding this cards true message to you. As you intend this you then can forget about the card and watch out for patterns of action, behaviour or events around you in your day. Any time something stands out to you hold the card in your mind and against the activity or event.

Ask yourself what is the connection between these two things – if any?

      <li”>Sometimes a connection will clearly be made and you can log this as a confirmation of a certain slant of meaning of this card at this time for you.

<li”>Other times there is a tenuous connection – this you can hold in a ‘maybe this’ pile and wait for further confirmation or a missing link between two things the card and that event to show itself to you.

  • Sometimes there will be no connection – here you can leave the situation as being about a different part of the process you are in currently – perhaps it relates to one of the other cards in your reading, perhaps it is just in a different realm of your life.


You can also look out for connections between your thoughts on the topic you have asked about, when you find yourself reflecting on the issue and exploring it in its own nature then remembering the card and looking for these same connections, the card its images, energy and possible meaning and the relation of this to your situation of enquiry.

As you work through the process of a card you can find its meaning and your understanding changes, you begin to see the whole story of a card rather than just the initial concepts your intuition and mind was able to latch onto. When flowing at its best you can experience moments where everything feels very connected – both in your life as well as how it is mirrored in your reading and this specific card.

As we set intentions like this with our unconscious often these processes of inner analysis take place almost by themselves, we come in and out of awareness of the process through our day. As we become more conscious of this process we start to become conscious of our own intuitive and inner being knowledge making its voice known in our conscious world – we come to know what we have been seeking for, often triggered by the tarot, and sometimes feeding back into a depth of knowledge of the tarot for future use with others.

You can encourage this process by having the image of the card about you – perhaps as a backdrop on your phone or desktop on your computer, or just out by your side when you are working.

Have a go at this process yourself, see it working in your life. All the processing of understanding the meaning of the card to you are valid and worthwhile, and if we use them together then our learning process becomes a very rich and personal experience which accelerates our own inner growth and the skills we have to offer others.