This is the fourth installment of the Weekly Tarot Card. You can read the first three installments in the following links:
After spending some time observing the 2 of Wands on Monday, and meditating on the card on Tuesday, hopefully ou noticed some symbols that stick out to your particularly.
Today’s post is going to be about some of depictions generally seen in the 2 of Wands across the board. I am using the Rider-Waite Tarot, Spiral Tarot, Thoth Tarot, Aquarian Tarot, Vampire Tarot, Faerie Tarot, Prisma-Vision Tarot, and Impressionist Tarot as a point of reference.
Color: Blue, Grey, Orange
The color blue is present in the sky in the Spiral Tarot and also in the background of the Thoth Tarot. The color represents imagination, communication, and clarity. It is a representation of the Throat Chakra, which is why there is the element of communication. This color also represents calm.
The color grey or white is present in the Rider-Waite Tarot, Aquarian Tarot, and Faerie Tarot. It is a color of neutrality. Especially when present in the sky, it represents neither white nor black, but somewhere in the middle. It has not been assigned a positive or negative quality, and thus, it, in itself, is neither positive nor negative yet. However, it does hold the ability to be transformed, tipped one way or the other. It is a color of balance in this regard.
The color orange is prominent in the Thoth 2 of Wands, but likewise is used in the clothing of the figure in the Rider-Waite Tarot and Aquarian Tarot. This corresponds to the element of the card, which is Fire.
Astrology: Mars and Aries
Aries is the astrological sign of birth, of breaking through, pushing the way into creation. It is a card of Fiery passion, and of action as a result. When looking at the Astrological Wheel, it is the first sign, in the first house, and thus it is a sign representing Self. It’s words are, ‘I am.’
Mars rules over Aries, but is a planet that rules masculinity, in the sense that it is action. It is passion, sex, anger, all that which we correspond to the element of heat. This does not mean that you must identify as masculine, but rather, it is a representation of the masculine attributes that we all possess in some measure.
In the majority of the decks, there is a body of water present, or a representation of water (there is a fountain in the Faerie Tarot). The water represents what must be crossed, however, it must be crossed in order to expand. The fact that the figure in the cards are at the water, or close enough to it that they can see it, shows the readiness and approach to expansion, though without actually having ventured to expansion.
In the Rider-Waite and Aquarian Tarot, there is a symbol with a white lily crossing a red rose. These represent the cultivation of intent and desire. The Roses in particular represent creation and desire, passion, and the senses (five petals), pleasure and beauty. The Lilies are a representation of spirit, the color of them represent the purity of spirit. Likewise, they represent a level of expertise found through truth.
The world that is present in many depictions of the 2 of Wands represents the consideration of the wider sphere. This is what happens outside the realm of the figure, and their impact on the public. This is the consideration of the figure’s placement, and how they plan to maneuver themselves.
Consider what images or symbols in your own decks hold significance when you look at them. What do they mean to you? Think about this before researching them.
The Decks Used
The Aquarian Tarot in a Tin by Italian-born, American-raised David Palladini, was published originally in 1970 by U.S. Games Systems Inc, and then republished again in 2016 in a smaller size. Named after the Age of Aquarius, the Aquarian Tarot is a midieval depiction of the Rider-Waite Tarot system. The images are closer, and thus might give the impression of being more character-based rather than relying on symbolism. This intimate deck provides a stark reflection of the human condition in it’s journey through the tarot.
Faerie Tarot by Nathalie Hertz, published by U.S. Games Systems, Inc, 2008. Hertz is a French artist, and the creator of several other beautiful tarot decks. The Faerie Tarot was ‘inspired by the flora and fauna of the French countryside,’ and ‘invites you to see the world in a delightful new way…blending fantasy, whimsy, and nature.’
Impressionist Tarot by Arturo Picca (artist) and Corrine Kenner (author), published by Lo Scarabeo in 2015. This deck takes works of classic impressionist paintings and recreates them to fit the meanings of the tarot. It pulls from works of Edonard Manet, Claude Monet, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Edgar Degas, Vincent van Gough, and Paul Gauguin. A truly beautiful deck, especially for those who have interest in the art world.
Prisma Visions Tarot by James R. Eads, 3rd ed., published in 2016. The deck itself is beautiful, though perhaps not for the beginning tarot reader. The suits all fit together to create a master picture displaying the energy and progression of the suits. The figures and images flow from one card to the next, showing movement within the stationary cards.
Rider-Waite by A. E. Waite. The deck used in these photos is currently out of print. I won’t say much about this deck, as it is fairly standard and probably one of the most produced decks. It serves as a standard for many tarot readers and artists, depicting classic images relating in part to the original playing cards that tarot developed from.
The Spiral Tarot by Kay Steventon. With turn-of-the-20th-century style art, this deck takes from the classic Rider-Waite deck and brings it up to the late 1800-early 1900’s, a time of industry and contemplation for the western world as it moved forward into a more technological era. I am a little biased toward this deck as it’s been my main deck for 15 years. The cards are thick with additional symbolism that can be tricky to pick out of the traditional Rider-Waite, and adds layers of Greek myth throughout the Major Arcana.
Thoth Tarot by Aleister Crowley (designer and author) and Lady Frieda Harris (artist), published by U. S. Games Systems, Inc., in 1978. This deck takes from most esoteric imagery, and requires the reader of the deck to have deep, initiate knowledge of the symbolism used. There is nothing within the cards that is without meaning. However, on a more surface level, the deck draws from Egyptian symbolism and from the style of the Marseille Tarot (mostly seen within the Minor Arcana). For those looking for deeper understandings of the universe, I recommend this deck. I would caution that this deck is highly advanced, and might be avoided for the budding reader.
Vampire Tarot – by Nathalie Hertz, published by U.S. Games Systems, Inc. in 2000. As mentioned above in reference to the Faerie Tarot, Hertze is a French artist who gained her notability through the publication of her tarot decks. The Vampire Tarot was a bestselling deck upon its release, and plays on more gothic symbolism, providing more jarring interpretations to allow for the accepting of negative forces within the world to compliment the positive forces. The deck brings together myths and legends in the form of vampires, which ‘gives tarot readers a macabre passport’ into the world of divination.