Minor Arcana with a Bad Reputation
Last week, I discussed three Major Arcana cards in a standard tarot deck that have a bad reputation when presented in a reading, what they mean for your reading and how to turn them around and what positive meanings these cards with a bad reputation can represent for you or your client!
The Minor Arcana
There are 78 cards in a standard tarot deck. 56 of those cards are the Minor Arcana.
The Minor Arcana is made up of four suites of cards which are traditionally Cups or Chalices, Wands, Swords, and Pentacles or Coins. If the Major Arcana symbolizes specific and large changes and events in a reading, the Minor Arcana the small nudges in a reading. They are the shifts and changes in energy that come with all situations in life, and in a reading are related to smaller issues. They can offer insight on a current situation that’s effecting you and give you viable options for steps to take in that situation, regarding your goals, and can be helpful when asking what sort of energy is necessary to get through the day.
The Minor Arcana is the compliment or the accent to the Major Arcana, and as such the negative messages can seem like a pile on if you’ve pulled one of the Major Arcana cards with a notable reputation for gloom and doom, or confusing if you’ve pulled something like the Empress, which has a meaning in fertility and giving birth, or the Wheel of Fortune which can mean good luck or good fortune.
The Suits of the Arcana
Each suit represents an element or mental state. Cups, or chalices, represent water and your emotions, feelings, intuition, and creativity. Swords represent fire and identifies with your thoughts, words, or actions, as well as making decisions, and asserting your power. Pentacles, or coins, represents Earth, and finances, abundance, and wealth. Finally, wands are identified with air, and represents energy, motivation and passion.
Nine of Swords
The Nine of Swords is depicted in the Rider-Waite deck with a person sitting upright in bed. Their hands are covering their face, and nine swords are painted in blue behind them. The Nine of Swords has a lot to do with someone’s mental state regarding a situation or issue in a reading. It signifies doubts or pains that a person may he having in the upright position, or premonitions, disappointment, or loss. Of course, seeing this in your reading can be striking, and a good way to turn such a negative card around is one, to remember that your mental state of distress is temporary in regard to the questions being asked.
It can also symbolize the person being in between worlds and a perception that is beyond the veil.
To lighten the load of this card after pulling it, it can be helpful to keep in mind that though we are suffering through dark times, this card can mean that they are at an end, and after the suffering there is light at the end of the tunnel. It can also serve as a reminder to turn to different ways of coping and self-care during times of mental stress, or as a means to avoid the meanings that the card brings all together.
Five of Pentacles
In the Rider-Waite deck, the Five of Cups is represented by two subjects slogging through a cold snow dressed in rags. The Coins are depicted on a stained glass window of a church or place of worship that our two figures are passing by.
On one hand, in a reading, the Five of Pentacles can represent financial hardships, ambivalence about a decision. However, the window in the card, can imply hope, or that the situation is still worth fighting for. In a reading, it would be good to note that not all difficulties are lost hopes, and that asking for help can often lend you results that lead you out of hardship. The card could also indicate that someone may be reaching out to you for the help they need, depending on the question!
Five of Cups
The Five of Cups in the Rider-Waite deck is depicted with a lone person standing atop a hill in a dark cloak with five empty cups scattered haphazardly around him. The card can mean emotional dejection or disappointment, or sorrow over any past issues. This card indicates the failure to see the good in a situation, so when it is pulled, there is a challenge to do the exact opposite for the question the reading is based on.
Looking on the bright side can be difficult, especially when we are so focused on what is changing or what we’re losing while looking at our scattered cups, but that’s exactly what we should attempt to do when things are difficult for us. During a reading, charge yourself with finding the silver lining or the light at the end of the tunnel.