As I’ve mentioned before, I am working on creating my own tarot deck. I have finished the artwork for the major arcana and am revising my essays on each card. Today, I share my current draft for the Empress card. It is the third card in the major arcana (The Fool is zero). I should note that I use an intuitive tarot approach vs. straight divination, and my interpretations are somewhat unconventional.
The Empress is associated with the concept of Mother Nature, of the earth’s bounty and blessings. Many relate her to motherhood directly. I and many others find this view of the card extremely limiting. It is useful to bear in mind that tarot, like many ancient systems, contains much archetypal and stereotypical language and imagery of male and female. There is value in understanding this worldview to interpret the cards in a more modern context. I very much believe there is a need to view all past wisdom teachings through a conscious lens of evolving understanding and compassion lest we stunt the growth of collective human wisdom.
All that being said, this card suggests the importance of caring for and nurturing everything around us, as the Earth and the plants and animals upon it care for and nurture us in return. Of course, Nature can also be harsh and cruel and uncaring. We, too, have this within us, so this card is also a reminder that there is both bounty and destruction, both caring and abuse, both life and death.
Creation is also an aspect of this card. We humans are creation machines. We name and define things, giving them life. It is important to note that the definitions we create are always in opposition to some other named thing. There is no concept of life without death, self without not self, god without not god, and vice versa. If we are to grow in our journey, we must become aware of these dichotomies of our own creation.
Keywords upright: bounty, abundance, caring, compassion, awareness of dichotomies in the web of life
Keywords reversed: destruction, abuse, wild, unproductive
You can find other A to Z Challenge blogs here.