Six of Cups - reversed Card facing down Ace of Swords Card facing down The Hermit Card facing down

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Decision Making Tarot Reading



The deck is shuffled and your tarot cards are dealt on the table, face down.

Reveal the cards

When you are prepared, and your query is formulized, please reveal each card by clicking on it, or reveal all cards at once by use of the button appearing below the tarot spread.

Decipher the cards

Once revealed, click on a card to learn of its significance, alongside a larger image of the card. You can leaf through different books offering tarot card interpretations by use of the drop-down list, above (the default selection, The Pictorial Key to the Tarot, is recommended for the casual querent).

Advanced options

The advanced cartomancer can draw additional cards to further clarify the tarot reading, by clicking on the Show Deck button, appearing below the tarot spread, and dragging a card away from the deck. Once dropped, the card can be moved again to a different position.

Good luck on your tarot reading.


Six of Cups - reversed


Card position:


Passive Choice

This card represents the more passive of the two alternatives before you, i.e., the one that would come to pass through a relative lack of action; perhaps, the well-trodden road. This card is a potentiality, good or bad, of that choice.

Card interpretation:


Description

Children in an old garden, their cups filled with flowers.

Divinatory Meanings

A card of the past and of memories, looking back, as--for example--on childhood; happiness, enjoyment, but coming rather from the past; things that have vanished. Another reading reverses this, giving new relations, new knowledge, new environment, and then the children are disporting in an unfamiliar precinct.

Divinatory Meanings - Reversed

The future, renewal, that which will come to pass presently.

Additional Divinatory Meanings

Pleasant memories.

Additional Meanings - Reversed

Inheritance to fall in quickly.


Six of Cups - reversed


Card position:


Passive Choice

This card represents the more passive of the two alternatives before you, i.e., the one that would come to pass through a relative lack of action; perhaps, the well-trodden road. This card is a potentiality, good or bad, of that choice.

Card interpretation:


Divinatory Meanings

Six of Cups - The Past, passed by, Faded, Vanished, Disappeared.

Divinatory Meanings - Reversed

The Future, that which is to come, Shortly, Soon.


Six of Cups - reversed


Card position:


Passive Choice

This card represents the more passive of the two alternatives before you, i.e., the one that would come to pass through a relative lack of action; perhaps, the well-trodden road. This card is a potentiality, good or bad, of that choice.

Card interpretation:


Tradition

The past, memories, looking back. Antiquity, ancient things, etc. Reversed: Afterwards, regeneration, resurrection, renovation, etc. Another version says: "Happiness, enjoyment, but coming rather from the past . . ." (Waite) Sometimes "new relations, new knowledge, new environment. . . ."

Theory

The Water of the soul on the house of Taurus, the Second, house of exaltation of the Moon. The latter is no doubt responsible for the addictions concerning memory and the past. The rest of the traditional descriptions, however, are rather rudimentary. There is more to be said of this house: it is full of meaning, as we already have seen, in the line of art, economy, etc. It relates to the country, and in connection with the latter the card will indicate rustic pleasures, enjoyment of country life and restoration to health by residence on the land. Happiness is surely a characteristic of this card, but we should say particularly in a simple and country life. Further we ascribe much artistic value to it, especially in painting, love for the picturesque. It means receptivity for beautiful impressions in general. On the other hand it may denote a love of good cheer and feasting. Good health and good humour are certainly results of this combination. On account of the Taurian qualities it will impart the tendency to collect objects of art and of antiquarian value; also an instinctive understanding of the same, so it promotes dealing in such objects. Appreciation of music in the lighter style, love of the theatre, but love of Nature above all.

Conclusion

Happiness, feeling of riches in oneself, joy, enjoyment, love of Nature and country life; the picturesque, painting, instinctive knowledge of art and antiquarian value; love of the lighter sorts of music and theatre; good health, good cheer, feasting. Receptivity for beauty. The only drawback may be the tendency to dissipation. Taurus, the everlasting, may indeed produce impressions of the past as well as of the future.


Ace of Swords


Card position:


Dilemma

This card represents your dilemma. These are the forces - internal or external, relevant or irrelevant - that are presently guiding your preference. Perhaps, this represents a third opportunity.

Card interpretation:


Description

A hand issues from a cloud, grasping a sword, the point of which is encircled by a crown.

Divinatory Meanings

Triumph, the excessive degree in everything, conquest, triumph of force. It is a card of great force, in love as well as in hatred. The crown may carry a much higher significance than comes usually within the sphere of fortune-telling.

Divinatory Meanings - Reversed

The same, but the results are disastrous; another account says--conception, childbirth, augmentation, multiplicity.

Additional Divinatory Meanings

Great prosperity or great misery.

Additional Meanings - Reversed

Marriage broken off, for a woman, through her own imprudence.


Ace of Swords


Card position:


Dilemma

This card represents your dilemma. These are the forces - internal or external, relevant or irrelevant - that are presently guiding your preference. Perhaps, this represents a third opportunity.

Card interpretation:


Divinatory Meanings

Ace of Swords - Triumph, Fecundity, Fertility, Prosperity.

Divinatory Meanings - Reversed

Embarrassment, Foolish and Hopeless Love, Obstacle, Hindrance.


Ace of Swords


Card position:


Dilemma

This card represents your dilemma. These are the forces - internal or external, relevant or irrelevant - that are presently guiding your preference. Perhaps, this represents a third opportunity.

Card interpretation:


Tradition

The extreme or excessive, triumph, force. "It is a card of great force, in love as well as in hatred." (Waite) Vehemence, fury, etc. Limits, extremity, frontier, confinement. Reversed: Conception, pregnancy, childbirth, fructification, production, enlarging, augmentation.

Theory

This is the first step of the element of Earth, coming on the First house or ascendant. Of course this has to do with a beginning, a strong outpouring of force, an impulse, and a material one too. Positive activity on the material plane is typically masculine, and this is a very masculine card, perhaps the most of all. There is no negotiation possible with it. It is emphatically 'yes' or 'no.' One of the primary expressions of the masculine is fructification, and the male action is indicated by this card. For the same reason it means germ, seed. And its natural consequence is conception and childbirth, the ace indicating here also the ascendant. In everything this card means the actual beginning in material execution, which at the same time may cut short something else. It may mean decapitation, or any justiciary execution. It signifies of course a decision, the end of uncertainty or twilight. It is a fresh starting point in matter: 'alea jacta est.' And so it may as well mean a strong demand, an appeal. There is courage in it and firm initiative. It may cause pain and affliction, but annihilates doubt, the greatest torture.

Conclusion

Initiative, force, masculine activity, seed, germ, commencement in matter, decision, starting point, emphasis; fructification. Execution, affliction, pain, but annihilation of doubt and uncertainty. Courage, firmness, integrity. May denote great passion or intense enmity. Fury, vehemence.


The Hermit


Card position:


Active Choice

This card represents the more active of the two alternatives before you, i.e., the one that will be achieved through a greater exertion of effort or risk; perhaps, the road less traveled by. This card is a potentiality, good or bad, of that choice.

Card interpretation:


Divinatory Meanings

Prudence, circumspection; also and especially treason, dissimulation, roguery, corruption.

Divinatory Meanings - Reversed

Concealment, disguise, policy, fear, unreasoned caution.

Inner Symbolism

The variation from the conventional models in this card is only that the lamp is not enveloped partially in the mantle of its bearer, who blends the idea of the Ancient of Days with the Light of the World It is a star which shines in the lantern. I have said that this is a card of attainment, and to extend this conception the figure is seen holding up his beacon on an eminence. Therefore the Hermit is not, as Court de Gebelin explained, a wise man in search of truth and justice; nor is he, as a later explanation proposes, an especial example of experience. His beacon intimates that "where I am, you also may be."

It is further a card which is understood quite incorrectly when it is connected with the idea of occult isolation, as the protection of personal magnetism against admixture. This is one of the frivolous renderings which we owe to Éliphas Lévi. It has been adopted by the French Order of Martinism and some of us have heard a great deal of the Silent and Unknown Philosophy enveloped by his mantle from the knowledge of the profane. In true Martinism, the significance of the term Philosophe inconnu was of another order. It did not refer to the intended concealment of the Instituted Mysteries, much less of their substitutes, but--like the card itself--to the truth that the Divine Mysteries secure their own protection from those who are unprepared.

Description

9. The Hermit, as he is termed in common parlance, stands next on the list; he is also the Capuchin, and in more philosophical language the Sage. He is said to be in search of that Truth which is located far off in the sequence, and of justice which has preceded him on the way. But this is a card of attainment, as we shall see later, rather than a card of quest. It is said also that his lantern contains the Light of Occult Science and that his staff is a Magic Wand. These interpretations are comparable in every respect to the divinatory and fortune-telling meanings with which I shall have to deal in their turn. The diabolism of both is that they are true after their own manner, but that they miss all the high things to which the Greater Arcana should be allocated. It is as if a man who knows in his heart that all roads lead to the heights, and that God is at the great height of all, should choose the way of perdition or the way of folly as the path of his own attainment. Éliphas Lévi has allocated this card to Prudence, but in so doing he has been actuated by the wish to fill a gap which would otherwise occur in the symbolism. The four cardinal virtues are necessary to an idealogical sequence like the Trumps Major, but they must not be taken only in that first sense which exists for the use and consolation of him who in these days of halfpenny journalism is called the man in the street. In their proper understanding they are the correlatives of the counsels of perfection when these have been similarly re-expressed, and they read as follows: (a) Transcendental justice, the counter-equilibrium of the scales, when they have been overweighted so that they dip heavily on the side of God. The corresponding counsel is to use loaded dice when you play for high stakes with Diabolus. The axiom is Aut Deus, aut nihil. (b) Divine Ecstacy, as a counterpoise to something called Temperance, the sign of which is, I believe, the extinction of lights in the tavern. The corresponding counsel is to drink only of new wine in the Kingdom of the Father, because God is all in all. The axiom is that man being a reasonable being must get intoxicated with God; the imputed case in point is Spinoza. (c) The state of Royal Fortitude, which is the state of a Tower of Ivory and a House of Gold, but it is God and not the man who has become Turris fortitudinis a facie inimici, and out of that House the enemy has been cast. The corresponding counsel is that a man must not spare himself even in the presence of death, but he must be certain that his sacrifice shall be-of any open course-the best that will ensure his end. The axiom is that the strength which is raised to such a degree that a man dares lose himself shall shew him how God is found, and as to such refuge--dare therefore and learn. (d) Prudence is the economy which follows the line of least resistance, that the soul may get back whence it came. It is a doctrine of divine parsimony and conservation of energy, because of the stress, the terror and the manifest impertinences of this life. The corresponding counsel is that true prudence is concerned with the one thing needful, and the axiom is: Waste not, want not. The conclusion of the whole matter is a business proposition founded on the law of exchange: You cannot help getting what you seek in respect of the things that are Divine: it is the law of supply and demand. I have mentioned these few matters at this point for two simple reasons: (a) because in proportion to the impartiality of the mind it seems sometimes more difficult to determine whether it is vice or vulgarity which lays waste the present world more piteously; (b) because in order to remedy the imperfections of the old notions it is highly needful, on occasion, to empty terms and phrases of their accepted significance, that they may receive a new and more adequate meaning.


The Hermit


Card position:


Active Choice

This card represents the more active of the two alternatives before you, i.e., the one that will be achieved through a greater exertion of effort or risk; perhaps, the road less traveled by. This card is a potentiality, good or bad, of that choice.

Card interpretation:


Divinatory Meanings

The Hermit - Prudence, Caution, Deliberation.

Divinatory Meanings - Reversed

Over-prudence, Timorousness, Fear.

Symbolism of the Keys

The Hermit - An old and bearded man wrapped in a mantle, and with his head covered with a cowl, bearing in his right hand the lantern of occult science, while in his left he holds his magic wand half hidden beneath his cloak. He is Prudence.


The Hermit


Card position:


Active Choice

This card represents the more active of the two alternatives before you, i.e., the one that will be achieved through a greater exertion of effort or risk; perhaps, the road less traveled by. This card is a potentiality, good or bad, of that choice.

Card interpretation:


Description and Meaning

Papus: "Humanity fulfilling the function of God the Holy Spirit. The human creative force." Indeed this is clearly Sagittarius for every astrologer. The author might have mentioned in the same line that the Hierophant (Leo) represents God the Son.

The Hebrew letter "Thet represents a roof and suggests the idea of safety and protection . . . protection ensured by wisdom." The astrologer says: the Ninth house is the house of the Master--idea of wisdom and protection in one; the Master in fact shields his disciples like a roof . . . in some way.

The sign is that of thought-power, creative mind, idealism, which throw their own light on the things below, and consequently the Sagittarian is remarkable for always seeing things in his own light and trying to throw light on things in order to instruct other people. He is the eternal traveller, the indefatigable walker. And mentally he is always more or less lonely. All this is very distinctly symbolised in the card of the Hermit, which stands for ideas, perspectives, spiritual or moral influences and for light thrown upon the objects of this earth-life. In divination it stands for teachers, legal authorities, advisers and guides, and with the guiding principles in everything and questions, in relation to the querent. But above all it is his own idealism, etc. The direction in which his thoughts are running.

In the older cards the Hermit is shielding his light on one side with his mantle. This may be indicative of the habit of Sagittarians to evade and disarm contradiction beforehand, knowing by intuition the power of darkness. He is leaning on the staff of knowledge with regard to earthy matters.

Waite is perfectly right in saying, that "Prudence is the least of its meanings and the most negligible." Some authors (Mathers) held this card to be the symbol of 'prudence,' but indeed the Sagittarian is not very famous for this virtue, though the card is truly Sagittarian and nothing else. This is again proved by the striking explanation of Waite: "His beacon intimates that 'where I am, you also may be.'" This is the stereotyped way in which a Sagittarian thinks.

Astrological Correspondence

Sagittarius