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Tarot 3: The Court Cards

September 4, 2019

by Colleen Schmidt

As we begin to dissect the card deck we notice that without the Major Arcana we are left with a regular playing deck with the exception of the Pages. The playing deck has 52 cards adding in the 4 pages and the 22 major Arcana equals 78 cards. The 52 cards are also referred to as the Minor Arcana.

The story goes that the original playing cards were derived from the Tarot, it was a way to hide the tarot deck. Not sure how true this is, but it does fit with a society that has so much against things like fortune telling due to religious reasons it is not so hard to imagine. This was said to be the case all over Europe.

As someone who started reading cards in the 70’s I can say that the prejudices of the cards are waning. When I started reading, I had to hear all kinds of crap and was called all kinds of names much of which was the result of prejudices due to religion. This is strange when you think about the fact that Astrology, Tarot and Palmistry are all in the bible and in the old testament they are NOT considered bad unless you let the reader run your life. Corinthians talks about Astrology and even Palmistry in a good light, how you can learn a great deal if you study these subjects. Ironic isn’t it?

Today these prejudices are pretty much gone. Over the years, young people no longer have these issues or concerns and it has been a relief. Fortunately the young people of today were not raised the same way. They are as a generation more open to the tools of empowerment.

Today we are looking at the Court Cards. In the playing deck we have the King, Queen and the Knight or (Jack as it is called.) In the tarot we have the King, Queen, Knight and the Page. Starting with the page which is not in the playing card deck, it represents news. As a reader I don’t read really small children in the cards, so pages only represent news to me. Really small children rarely affect cards unless a parent is looking at a child in particular. Perhaps a child who is special in some way. Even then as a reader I might use a Knight.

Pages represent news of whatever suite it falls.

For example a Page of Pentacles could be good news concerning money. In reverse it is a worry about money going out.

A page of Sword is talking about news that is upsetting or stressful, as swords tend to represent stress. Ironically, in reverse this cards is seen as a compensation card. A situation is better off because something better is coming better then what the client or person asking the question originally wanted.

A Page of Wands is good news of a networking nature. Hearing something that is happy or good for the person asking. A new connection perhaps? But in reverse it is telling us though that connection is still happening it is delayed.

Finally the Page of Cups talks of some news that feels good in someone’s heart. This can often be personal, like a new baby or a date with someone that looks promising. Even if talking about a job, it will be a job that makes the person happy. But in reverse it speaks to the need to do something nice for yourself. It can be an indication of oppression that affects how the person is feeling in their heart.

When we are talking Knights we are talking about people who are younger or of a lesser capacity. One of the reasons would be the fact that the Knights will tend to react out of emotion rather then reason, showing the lack of maturity.

Starting with the Knight of Wands, here is someone who can cheer lead the client giving support, particular verbally. They can also help to back them in their expansion and achievement of goals. But in reverse the opposite is true, this is someone who is saying things that are upsetting to the client. There could even be a level of dishonesty with regard to what is being said.

The Knight of Swords is about directed energy, sometimes it is a younger person who is very focused, though it can also refer to the energy of the client. Emotionally this energy shows a degree of discipline. However the opposite is true when we are dealing with the reversed energy. Here the energy is scattered and chaotic. Then again it could be talking about a younger person who is scattered in their energy and perhaps cause a great deal of stress to those around them.

The Knight of Cups represents the idea of Karmic help. This card represents someone close to the client who can be helpful and supportive, generally in a more quiet way. There can be intuitive abilities because of the emotional closeness to the client. When in reverse it is quite the opposite. Someone close to the client is at odds with them. Not always to the point of ending a relationship, but certainly some head butting.

The Knight of Pentacles is a young person who might be studious. Certainly these are not people whether young or older who make waves they do what they have to without fanfare. In reverse the opposite is true here these young people are surprising others. But here I see that those who are often “yes” people (Pentacles) say “no.” That alone can make the Knight of Pentacles in reverse stronger then the upright Knight of Pentacles. Nonetheless the energy of the reverse can often be surprising.

The Queens are generally women, however they can also be (as we have seen in the Knights) more then just people, they can also represent situations. Often times when reading the cards can have more then one meaning and in really good readings you would use ALL those meanings. In astrology we have a saying that any aspect or energy means all that it can, this is also true of the cards.

The Queen of Swords is a great example. Upright she is a strong and independent women, she is a good manager or boss. But in reverse this can represent a women who is stressed or even has issues with jealousy. But it can also represent a time of spiritual growth through conflict and struggle.

Queen of Wands is an outgoing and attractive women who can be supportive and can help with connections and things like networking. But in reverse it could be a women who is over-whelmed, and she is not honest. Here again the fact that a situation is dishonest can also be indicated through this energy. In extreme cases people may not be honest with themselves.

Queen of Pentacles has her feet solidity on the ground. This is someone who is security oriented and can be good in business. But in reverse she is someone who lacks confidence in herself. Therefore this is someone who is not to be trusted. Situations that are not as secure could cause people to feel insecure can be seen here.

The Queen of Cups is a women who is intuitive and she is often seen as a great care-taker. Someone who does better in relationships then not. Often seen as a good mother, teacher or care-taker. These are women who give good advice because of their closeness to the client. In reverse, it is someone who is not stable who could make mountains out of mole hills. Menopause can show up as a reverse energy here. There is an emotionally instability with the Queen of Cups in reverse.

The Kings are of course men, but they also like the queens and the knights can have other meanings and can be speaking at times of situations related to the person asking the questions. Just as the Queen of Pentacles can speak to a level of insecurity so can the King of Pentacles.

So beginning with the King of Pentacles we see a man who is secure, no doubt is comfortable in a business setting. But this is also a man who is good with his hands, so a construction worker can also be indicated here. Security is again important to these people, being very stable people. But in reverse the reverse is true, someone who is NOT good with money, they tend to spend too much. They could be people who put too much importance on money, being materialistic. In reverse can be an indication of a philanderer. So insecure they can tend to cheat on their significant other. This card is again associated with overall insecurity, and that includes companies that are not stable or secure.

The King of Swords is a strong man generally with some kind of aura that emphasizes this. Often times this is someone with a title or someone from the military or police. It can also represent a professional man, such as a surgeon or lawyer. Upright there can be a great deal of support, even if the client is not close to this person. But in reverse it is a stressful and even abusive situation or man. A man could be contributing to this stressful situation. But again it can also be a man who is abusive or even ignorant.

The King of Wands is a charming individual and very good at selling things, even ideas. This is someone who knows how to use their good looks and charm to get what they need. But they can also be very supportive of the client. Here again the idea of making connections and contacts via this man due to the Wand energy of networking. In reverse this is a lying man, someone who lacks confidence and will lie to make themselves look and feel better. There is a level of dishonesty when it comes to the King of Wands in reverse.

King of Cups is a good father and care-taker. They make good partners because they get close to those around them. They have great intuition and can be a quiet strength. In reverse it can be someone who is dealing with substance abuse issues. They are not dealing in reality for some reason, sometimes drugs or medication can cause this. But so can things like extreme jealousy. When it comes to the King of Cups in reverse we are dealing with a lack of commitment. So they are not good partners when reverse because they can’t commit. Promises made are not always kept with this card.

Some readers attribute physical features to the cards. I studied this but left it all go since I read here in the US and we have all colors of people. As a reader I use the energy of the person rather then their coloring. But for your information I will list below what another reader has posted regarding the court cards.

Swords are said to be dark and swarthy.

The Wands are somewhat lighter but with some color.

Pentacles are lighter still, more of a medium flavor if you will.

Whereas the cups are considered very light and very soft.

Since I read for ALL kinds of people and all colors and sexual preferences, I found it easy to just go with the energy of the suite of the cards. However, when someone who is masculine is more feminine in nature, they could be described by the Queen and vise-versa. In our ever changing world there are many who do not identify with a gender, so both male and female energies can play out differently. As a reader we have to be more open to the gender issue when reading the court cards.

Court Cards also make great significations if someone really identified with a certain energy. This is particularly true if someone is reading for themselves. Today’s reading exercise is to choose one of the court cards and use it for your own person significator. Then draw another card maybe two to further describe what might be happening to that significator.

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