This is the fifth and last installment in this Weekly Tarot Card series: 4 of Wands defintion. The next series will begin on Monday. However, if you’d like to get caught up on the rest of the week, you can use the following links:
Starting the week, we spent some time developing our own personal meanings before breaking down the components of the card. Each of these components is like a puzzle. They all fit together to create a certain picture, but that picture is specific to the puzzler. It is up to you to make your own connections as to how these pieces fit together. What has the puzzle told you so far.
The 4 of Wands is about structure, but it’s about bringing forth the element of Fire in a structured manner. Considering that the element of Fire is about creation and passion, then this is beyond having started your creative project, but about that moment when you know it’s self-sustaining. It’s been put in motion and has gotten to a place where you can take a moment to celebrate this success. The danger behind this is that it might make us complacent, and thus we will be unprepared for what’s to come. This is a pat-on-the-back moment, but the work isn’t done yet (as we’ll see with the 5 of Wands).
The astrological association of Venus in Aries brings together the masculine and feminine. Biologically we can consider that it takes the masculine and feminine parts to create a baby. However, from a metaphysical standpoint, There are the masculine and feminine parts to all of us, and it takes both aspects to work in harmony in order for our goals to be achieved. Furthermore, as Venus is the representative of the Empress and Aries is the representative of the Emperor, who are both seen as parent figures, it can bring in the element of family into the definition of the card.
In some depictions of the 4 of Wands, the two figures seen are a man and a woman being married. However, A. E. Waite intended for the two figures seen in the card to be two women, which equally be representative of a wedding, but with Waite’s depiction is more likely to be a celebration.
This is a time for celebration. It could mean the expansion of family or of a creative project. However, structure has been established, and there’s no turning back. The reminder is to keep moving forward!
Celebration, community, harmony, harvest, regarding past works.
What does the 4 of Wands mean to you? How do you define it with the exercises and information from this week?
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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.