Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The many faces of the suits

The playing cards we are so familiar with have a clear relationship with the Minor Arcana. As the picture above shows, modern cards have a relationship with the Tarot suits. The suits are divided into 4 groups - wands, cups, swords and pentacles, though there is certainly plenty of variation on those themes. In the Inner Child Cards that I also use, the 4 suites are wands, hearts, swords and crystals.

The four major groups hold 4 distinct energies.

Wands are fire, energy, ambition, initiative, creativity, passion
(wands can also be represented by sticks, batons, staves, rods etc)

Cups are water, emotions, intuition, love, empathy, the Holy Grail
(cups can also be represented by hearts, harps, flowers, esp roses, chalices, etc)

Swords are air, intellectual, sharp, cutting through illusions, objectivity, Truth
(Swords somehow are the most common suit, rarely changing. I guess swords are such a definitive image!)

Pentacles are earth, work, coins/material possessions, security, comfort.
(pentacles can also be represented by coins, stars, crystals, discs, bells, etc)

Each suit goes from Ace to ten, and then has 4 court cards - the page, knight, queen and king. And of course, there are many variations on those themes as well (from princesses to mermaids…) Court Cards can also be referred to as sister, brother, mother, father – which can explain a lot!

1 comment:

  1. hey thanks it was cool to get some info. i would recommend rethinking your "for legal purposes" warning about entertainment. surely this is more than entertainment. forget legal purposes this is divination and we don't have to be charlatans to believe in meaningful "coincidences"