Closing Date 28th July, 2017 for Tarot Class #42017, The Major Arcana Reversed
"Studying and reading tarot for well on 3 decades I firmly believe one does so using a combination of traditional meanings, subjective or personal interpretation (and so develops insight); and intuitively. Tarot is experiential; and reading ability is based around practice, practice, practice! And in this practice, all levels of reading are developed at the individual's own pace.
"Having offered 'read the tarot intuitively' workshops I noticed the less experienced readers in the group struggled to make meaning of their spreads. The more psychic readers went straight to 'intuition'; thus missing out on the full and rich scope and range of tarot meaning and offer accurate and contextual guidance.
"Tarot is a language of symbols; it connects the conscious to the subconscious. A reader of any symbolic medium might endeavour to learn and understand the language of their tool. Tarot is a marvellous tradition of profound knowledge; that which underscores deep understanding and skill.
"A good grasp of the traditional meanings of the cards 'can give you wings'."
All my best,
Martha Adams © 2017
The Chariot VII Upright
Martha Adams © 2017
The Chariot VII is a carefully composed, symmetrical picture that gives a sense of anticipation, organisation and balance. The card is filled with positive symbols and elements suggesting the possibility of great personal success. The rich and complex imagery on The Charioteer’s armour suggests that his/her quest will not be a simple or easy one but will demand the full extent of his/her inner and outer resources. The expanse of yellow sky shows a feeling of optimism and certainty. The visual ‘weight’ of the overall image is concentrated in the lower part of card, demonstrating that his/her quest is realistic and well-grounded in the physical world.
The Charioteer is poised; ready to take-on the challenges that lie ahead. His/her gleaming helmet brings our attention directly to the large guiding Star that serves to illuminate his/her path. The Star represents possibilities of fame, fortune and the fulfilment of hopes and dreams. The silver colour of the armour on his/her chest and forearms symbolises dignity, self-control, determination and organisation; and upright, represents the magical gifts and safe travel bestowed by Goddesses. The two Moons on his/her shoulders have their faces raised towards the sky signifying that The Charioteer is able to access information from mystical sources through his insight, intuition and imagination. His/her belt and battle-skirt are rich with astrological glyphs demonstrating a keen understanding of his/her own personality and personal destiny. The environment from which s/he commences his/her travels is bathed in bright yellow, the colour of the 3rd Chakra, signifying a joyful intellect and representing a healthy self-image, self-confidence and self-esteem.
The Chariot itself appears well-designed and structurally sound; the open cage that supports the canopy provides the charioteer with an uninterrupted 360° view of the surrounding environment. Trump 7 is often referred to as a card of ‘clear-vision’ or clairvoyance. The star-encrusted, pale-blue canopy symbolises that both Charioteer and chariot move under the protection of the heavens and the guidance of the cosmos. The light blue canopy is the colour of the 5th Chakra demonstrating the Charioteer’s ability ‘give voice’ to his dreams. The Charioteer holds his gold-tipped and pale blue wand before him/her demonstrating that the source of his/er will power; showing s/he holds the secrets of the universe in his/her hand and in action, reflects the principle of divine inspiration; again we see ‘as above so below’ as an energy that underlies personal endeavour and success.
On the front of the chariot is the symbol of Isis; the full moon supported by extended blue wings showing that The Egyptian goddess gives the journeyman both her blessings and the magic needed to take his/her vehicle on the correct path. The red Hindu emblem symbolises the seamless union of male and female energies. The solid rise of city walls behind him/her signifies healthy personal boundaries; while providing sure context for his/her quest. Both The Chariot and the cityscape are soft grey, a feminine colour that represents flexibility of thought and action offering The Charioteer the capacity to change and redirect his/her focus, as necessary. The red-tipped towers and turrets add to the image’s overall symmetry and symbolise his/her passion is supported by well-defined goals and objectives. The river of life flows full and evenly between the chariot and the city, suggesting that even while The Charioteer has his/her own agenda s/he remains connect to a potent, fluid emotional life-force.
The Charioteer uses no physical means to control the powerful black and white sphinxes; their mirror image patterns symbolising the body and mind and the four elements - earth, wind, fire, and water – all existing in correct balance. The Egyptian sphinx implies the power of the ‘lion’s strength’. To avail him/herself of this power, for his/her own purposes, the emotions must be controlled by the intellect and physical strength directed by The Charioteer’s own willpower and by divine will. With this level of self-control, the mythical beasts of half man-half lion remain obediently at the base of his vehicle, quietly flicking their tails, in anticipation of the demanding and exhilarating journey ahead.
Please join me for the next post on The Chariot VII Tarot of Marseilles Upright.
But let’s face it folks, not all of us make choices based on our inner desires. The imagery in the reversed The Lovers and The Lover share many of the key indicators of unwise choices and decisions.
In both The Lovers and The Lover the Sun features strongly as a symbol of new and successful beginnings; the yellow-gold symbolises a loving benefactor, wealth, power and vibrant health. It is the colour of the Solar Plexus or the 3rd Chakra and energy-centre of the body; it represents emotional intelligence, self-confidence, self-esteem and self-authority. Reversed, The Lovers card shows the golden-yellow threatening to disappear from view; the setting sun might perhaps leave the two figures standing in darkness. Similarly, the sun in The Lover now appears in the lower part of the card and its beautiful rays of gold, red (passion and earthy-energy) and blue (truthful and noble communications) are ill-defined. Gold-yellow when ill-defined is a sign of pessimism and superficiality; weakening the chances for new beginnings and victory.
The heavenly figures of compassion and patronage hang upside-down and appear to be exiting the picture; why should they hang around when they are not being seen or heard? In The Lovers the Archangel’s head of flaming red and green hair and his great orange-red wings and hands are spread out as one who is falling – head first - from a great height. His great, purple-grey cloak becomes a confusing maze of fabric that hides him from the woman and man’s sight.
Having now risen above their angelic guardian, their heads are covered with a dense, grey fog which suggests that the two are emotionally confused. The man and woman appear ungrounded as their feet hardly touch the earth and hands and arms gesture with a sense of uncertainty. The woman’s hand motions to the tip of the large, brown mountain as it now dominates the upper part of this image. While a mountain signifies obstacles, the colour brown symbolises material security and the accumulation of material possessions. Brown, ill-defined, can signify hidden emotions and effectively hiding your true nature. The mountain apex points directly at the grey fog maybe suggesting the nature of the issue that now splits the male and female. The mountain penetrates the pale blue sky; the colour of the 5th Chakra that represents speaking your truth.
In The Lover, poor little Cupid’s wings cannot keep him upright. His chubby little legs flail around above his body as his head nods too close to the ground.
Cupid’s legendary aim now appears unsteady and the pulled bow looks as if it could backfire. The male figure looks trapped between the two female bodies. The robes of the women clearly indicate contrasting beliefs; (blue over red and red over blue). An ‘ill-defined’ deep-blue colour indicates lack of integrity and trustworthiness; while ‘ill-defined’ red can stand for anger, aggression and even hatred. The man’s feet have risen to the top of the picture with each one turned in the direction of the women. Bare feet can symbolise fear of poverty and a loss of livelihood; perhaps grounds for his indecisiveness. The mound of earth pushes downwards, giving him less space ‘to move’. The older woman appears larger and more dominant than all the other figures. While she tightens her grasp on the man’s shoulder, the younger woman’s white arms appear to flap about in chaos; she appears to have completely lost her grip.
What would be my interpretation of The Lovers and The Lover in Reverse? It is, perhaps, not to ‘let the sun set’ on what is truly important to you. Overcome obvious obstacles and do not be persuaded against the thing(s) that you are passionate about. Use the empowering energy of your 3rd Chakra and go with your gut instincts to help you to make joyful decisions about your own life. Consider your higher guidance as a unique and powerful source of inspiration, whatever image that might take. Trusting the validity of your intuition is an essential part of the journey to success.
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Upright, The Lovers and The Lover indicate qualities important to making well-balanced choices and decisions. In the Major Arcana The Lovers VI and The Lover VI relate to making choices that reflect our deepest yearnings; who and what to love. We can be passionate about a course of learning or study; a vocation or avocation; about relationships and/or people; travel; settling down; or our health and well-being. Situations that arise from what we choose to devote ourselves to are almost limitless.
In The Lovers VI an Archangel with huge, red-orange wings is positioned before an intense golden-yellow sun. The Angel and Sun give us a clear signal that divine inspiration, guidance from our higher self, is foremost when making decisions about our true needs. The Angel is an expression of the blessings, love, joy and protection we feel when choices are made in harmony with our heartfelt wishes.
Below the Angel we see a man and a woman who also symbolise the feminine and masculine qualities, common to everyone. The woman looks directly at the Archangel for insightful advice. The man looks to the woman perhaps seeking to bond with her; or with his own feminine intuition. The man and woman stand with their feet placed firmly on the ground; they are uncovered and their open body language indicates they are ready to receive guidance. They physically mirror each other giving a sense of unison and agreement. The mature trees behind each figure provide balance, complementarity and structure and at the same time emphasising the important differences between them; the woman’s earthy abundance and fertility and the man’s burning passion. The mountain is in the far distance; a divisive obstacle or challenge which the two have overcome together.
In The Lover we see Cupid, a mythical symbol of love and union hovering high in the sky with his bow and arrow pulled and poised; the arrow ready to pierce the heart of the lover.
Cupid also, is framed by magnificent and radiant Sun to indicate his power and success in matters of mortal love and romance. Just below him, a young man and woman appear to be in animated discussion with an older woman. The young woman is devoted (predominantly deep-blue cape) and her intention is pure (white sleeves); her body-language suggests that she is making her own desires known and understood. The older woman’s facial expression indicates disapproval; and her hand on the man’s shoulder indicates her influence over him. All three figures (the male and two females) remain connected through touch. Even while man’s torso moves in the direction of the young woman, his body leans into the older woman. And, his feet indicate some ambivalence; each foot points towards one of the women showing he has an important decision to make.
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Upside-down, The Hierophant’ Vs small feet come clearly into view. His white slippers look like they are flailing around and air-borne and disconnected to the red carpet of his elevated platform. Red is the colour of the First Chakra and, ill-aspected, gives the figure the appearance of being totally ungrounded. The Hierophant V reversed and may indicate does not possess the strength or positive emotion that would to connect him energetically and physically with the community he seeks to serve.
The gold Tiara(s) and Triple Cross(s) of both Papal figures have found their way to the bottom of each card’s image. The Pope V’s head and beautiful Tiara strike the very bottom of the card. He gives the impression that he is balancing precariously on the very tip of his beautiful Tiara and using the inverted Triple Cross to balance and prevent himself from falling over. Their Papal faces to the ground suggests any advice and directives are barely heard. The reversed symbolism of the Tiara and Triple Cross imply a diminished power to advise and instruct; and serves to reduce overall capacity to influence others through teaching of custom and convention. When ill-dignified, the colour Gold suggests a Papal fear of success or of failure and opportunistic talk or actions on the part of the initiates.
In reverse, The Hierophant V’s initiates have positioned themselves at the top of card between the two large grey pillars. They now look down at the hapless Papal figures from their lofty position. The Pope V’s once large orderly group of followers, appears now as an unruly rabble. He seems to have lost his ability to command the attention, respect and control of the group. The Keys of Heaven that once lay at the feet of The Hierophant V have risen, inverted, to the top of the card. The Keys, are within easy reach of the initiates, suggests the followers have the power to determine their own, possibly unconventional ways of thinking and living; possibly no longer choosing the traditional path.
Reversed, The Hierophant V and The Pope V appear at cross-purposes to their follower’s expectations and actions. An ill-aspect Red Chakra suggest that divine authority, knowledge of tradition and conventional ways are being challenged. The strength and ability of the Papal figures to command an audience, appears to be contested. The acolytes and students seem to be questioning the conventional practices and traditional wisdom and knowledge of their teachers and ministers; the reversal of The Hierophant V and The Pope V presents a challenge of position and authority; it has upturned the normal teacher-student relationship. There appears a degree of anarchy; whereby the followers may find time-honoured explanations or reasons for life offering little or no value and seek a more unconventional approach to meaning and their quest for understanding.
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Martha Adams © 2017 All Rights Reserved
The Hierophant V and The Pope V In Reverse.
The Number 5 represents the 5 senses: sight, hearing, taste, feeling, and smell. It stands for the ‘essence of things as they are’ and in Latin the word for five means Nature. Five is the number of sensuality, change and learning. We might describe The Hierophant V and The Pope V those who give spiritual and esoteric meaning to the human experience of the senses and of sensuality.
In Reverse, The Hierophant V and The Pope V are seen toppling from their elevated positions; they are now upside-down. The Hierophant V’s larger-than-life red ceremonial gown rises to the top of the card like a great, formless red sail, billowing in the wind. The Red robe worn by The Pope V appears less elegant and structured and falls away and flaps unceremoniously about his royal blue tunic. When Red is ill-dignified, it can mean anger, obsession or even fanaticism. The Red Chakra ill-aspected suggest passions that are untrained and unrestrained; a loss of courage or vitality or a lack of connection with a community. When following through on ideas, actions are based on anger and not love, making a movement or plan forceful but unsustainable.
The Pope V’s royal blue tunic and The Hierophant V’s pale blue neck-scarf are upside-down. When blue, the colour of the Fifth Chakra is ill-dignified it can mean an inability to communicate deep and spiritual truths and ideals with conviction and to good effect or, to the contrary, of exploring or advocating unconventional solutions or ideas to common life situations. The reversed image might suggest that advice and action are inconsistent with traditional knowledge and practices. The reversed initiates and followers suggest they have lost their interest in learning and following the traditional ways and no longer choose to abide to customs; the keys to their future are now in their grasp. The Hierophant V's ill-dignified neckerchief may indicate he is at a loss of what to advise those who question his authority, practises or knowledge; and The Pope V’s inverted blue tunic may indicate that he is misunderstood or misunderstands the needs of his followers and ministers to those who do not agree, or wish to hear or to follow. Blue reversed signifies communication difficulties and the ill-aspected Fifth Chakra indicates an inability to put thoughts into action; and, by relying on traditional teachings and practises, these Papal authorities may be unable to provide the desired support or guidance to others.
The Hierophant V’s arms appear to be dramatically outstretched in what seems an attempt to protect himself from a calamitous fall. He looks as if he is using the two grey pillars on either side of his body to keep him suspended from the ground and/or to break his fall. The Hierophant looks decidedly unimpressed and even unhappy. The Pope V’s facial expression, interestingly, appears to be one more of amusement then displeasure.
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The Hierophant V and The Pope V Part 2 continued next week.....
Martha Adams © 2017 All Rights Reserved
Beginners & Refreshers Tarot Classes©
78 Tarot Cards UPRIGHT 2017 on Saturdays 20, 27 May & 3 June
Bookings Now Closed: Workshop #12017 The Major Arcana Upright is 29th April, 2017
Bookings Now Closed: Workshop #22017 The Minor Arcana Upright is 6th May, 2017
Bookings Close 13th May, 2017: Workshop #32017 The Tarot Court Cards Upright 2017
Learn or refresh your existing knowledge and understanding of the traditional interpretations and essential meanings of the 78 tarot cards. Classes are run in small groups with other tarot learners and refreshers, in a full day of shared tarot-learning and tarot-reading activities. Activities are hands-on and offer you an immediate, engaging, shared, experiential and way to learn or to revitalise your knowledge of the essential, core and traditional meanings of both Upright and Reversed Tarot.
To develop the confidence and skill to integrate our intuition and imagination into our tarot readings for ourselves and others we must take the vital step to learn and to understand the symbolic meaning embedded in a tarot card regardless of its original source and conception. Understanding the historical, traditional and essential meanings of each of the 78 cards gives us the 'language of tarot'; the ability – to speak, write or even teach – the story in the cards. Learning our tarot 'abc's' gives us the grammar and punctuation; and the ability to comprehend or 'interpret' and communicate what it is we are seeing to others.
Martha Adams All Rights Reserved © 2017
The Hierophant V: The Rider Deck and The Pope V: The Tarot of Marseilles also differ in rather interesting ways.
The Hierophant V is often considered a spiritual teacher. With his delicate facial features his appearance is youthful and even feminine. However, The Hierophant V's eyes tell a different story as they hold his steady, determined gaze over the heads of those who gather before and beneath him. His manner and expression signify a clear, unwavering focus and direction. His arms are open wide in salutation and symbolising himself as the bridge between Heaven and Earth. The Hierophant V's hands appear small, graceful and effeminate. His right hand, is raised towards heaven, shows two fingers pointing skyward and two pointing downward signifying a gesture of blessing or benediction. The Hierophant V sits between 2 large grey pillars indicating the existence but perhaps the insignificance of the duality of our sentient world to traditional dogma. The colour pale grey is a feminine colour that provides a contrast to the masculine red of his ceremonial gown. Grey signifies the potential for growth through uncertainty and change; it symbolises that fertile 'space' of unlimited potential and for the process of manifesting.
The Pope V is God’s representative on Earth and a man in his senior years with a thick grey-white beard and long hair. He has an experienced, worldly face. The Pope’s gaze seems softer and more contemplative; focused on those gathering around him to receive his teaching and blessing. The Pope’s left hand is not raised towards heaven; rather it directs attention to the golden glove on his right hand showing a Maltese Cross. The Maltese Cross is said to symbolise the traits of truth, repentance, faith, humility, justice and mercy. The Pope V sits before two royal-blue pillars that give an appearance of being a considerable distance in the background. The dark blue suggests honour, nobility and truth and frames The Pope’s head and face. The Pope V sits before two royal-blue pillars that give an appearance of being a considerable distance in the background. The dark blue suggests honour, nobility and truth and frames The Pope’s head and face.. While pillars indicate limitations within which we live they also provide the framework for daily living. It is within these boundaries.
The Pope V and The Hierophant V each express through their teachings what is important morally, culturally, socially, and spiritually, to a daily life: how to feel, think and act. The Hierophant V has the Keys to Heaven at his feet, granting him the authority to direct the spiritual growth in others and, as with The Pope V, the advance of dogma in his Church.
Martha Adams © 2017 All Rights Reserved.
Bookings for the May-June Workshops will soon end.
Please see final booking dates below starting with 29th April 2017.
If you wish to secure your place at any of these workshops book now
and I will send you a confirmation email within 24 hours.
An invoice (for your choice of workshops) will be emailed to you in early May 2017.
Workshop #12017: 20th May 2017
The Major Arcana Upright
Last day to book Workshop #12017 is 29th April, 2017
Workshop #22017: 27th May 2017
The Minor Arcana Upright
Last day to book Workshop #22017 is 6th May, 2017
Workshop #32017 : 3rd June 2017
The Tarot Court Cards Upright
Last day to book Workshop #32017 is 13th May, 2017
The Hierophant V and The Pope V
The Number 5 represents the 5 senses: sight, hearing, taste, feeling, and smell. It stands for the ‘essence of things as they are’ and in Latin the word for five means Nature. We might describe The Hierophant V: Rider and The Pope V: Marseilles as those cultural leaders who give others meaning to the sentient-spiritual relationship in the realm of of life experience and to the world of the senses.
In their Upright position, The Hierophant V: Rider and The Pope V: Marseilles symbolise society’s norms and traditions and are sought after as key sources of knowledge and wisdom - both sacred and profane. The Papal characters are leaders of conformist and traditional institutions and work to maintain society’s established order and conventional ideologies; the tried and the true. Key V of the Major Arcana represents the guide, teacher, pastor and mentor; and can signify receiving counselling, education and religious instruction or contract, such as a traditional marriage contract. The Hierophant V: Rider and The Pope V: Marseilles deliver sensible and socially acceptable advice. The values they represent are designed to help us grow, to move us towards peace, spiritual understanding and better living. In both images The Hierophant V: Rider and The Pope V: Marseilles appear much larger than the other figures – the acolytes, students and initiates. Their considerable ‘weight’ and relative size signifies their much greater authority, power and station in life. They are positioned to so their bodies, faces and hands are clearly visible to all.
Each wears a gold and jewelled Triple Crown or Tiara representing a divinely appointed clergyman-teacher-pastor. In their left hand each holds a golden staff with Triple Cross; a symbol of faith, hope and love. The Triple Cross signifies needs for a fulfilling spiritual life – a love of nature, a love of ones neighbours and the love of God. Gold-yellow is a masculine colour and symbolic of a both the precious metal and of the Third Chakra. It symbolises wealth and abundance, power, supreme spiritual qualities, unconditional love and a deep understanding of the self and the soul’s purpose.
The Hierophant V: Rider and The Pope V: Marseilles share many common elements. They are both almost completely covered by their extravagant ceremonial garments; leaving only their hands and faces exposed. The Hierophant V: Rider’s resplendent red cloak with white trim, bearing the Cross motive, reminds us of both the The Magician I: Rider and The Emperor IV: Rider. The Pope V: Marseilles wears an impressive red ceremonial cape with golden trim over a royal blue tunic. Red is a masculine colour and signifies physical vigour, force, excitement and passion. Red is the colour of the 1st Chakra and stands for the courage to live one’s (earthly) purpose with persistence, personal strength and a passionate and balanced approach. The underlying energy of the First Chakra is that of physical-emotional connection to family, tribe, country and nation.
Under his red cloak The Pope V: Marseilles wears a substantial tunic of royal blue; the colour royal blue signifies devotional study, the quest for religious truths and personal integrity. The Hierophant V: Rider wears a pale blue neckerchief which signifies peace, calm and healing. Lighter shades of blue are associated with the throat and Fifth Chakra; and symbolise communication, the ability to express oneself clearly and to manifest one’s goals in life.
The white undergarments worn by both figures suggest an underlying purity and capacity or healing through expression compassion with words. White is the colour of mental clarity, pure thoughts and actions and stimulates feelings of renewal.
The Hierophant V: Rider and The Pope V: Marseilles also differ in rather interesting ways. The Hierophant V: Rider is often considered a spiritual teacher and has a face that appears youthful and delicate; his eyes however, hold a steady, determined gaze over the heads of those who gather before showing focus and clear direction. His hands appear small, graceful and even effeminate even as his arms are open wide in salutation. The Pope V is God’s representative on Earth and a man in his senior years with a thick grey-white beard and long hair. He has an experienced, worldly face. The Pope’s gaze seems softer and more contemplative; focused on those gathering around him to receive his teaching and blessing.
Martha Adams © 2017 All Rights Reserved.
The Tarot Blog Author