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The Minor Arcana: The Cups

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1 The Minor Arcana: The Cups on Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:31 pm

The second strongest suit in the Minor Arcana, Cups is the exact opposite of its sister suit, Swords. Called the suit of love and happiness, Cups represents love in all of its forms, not just the romantic kind. In a reading, these cards also signal the presence of genuine caring and concern for others, of kindness and healing (both emotional and physical), of friendship and strong attraction. The allegory here is of selfless devotion, and even, in some situations, of divine protection.
The reference is to local, or Parish Priest, who usually came from the lower classes himself. The local priest had a personal understanding of the lives of the people he ministered to; he could, and often did, act as an intercessor not only between his parishioners and God, but also between the powerless and the Barons.
In modern terms, Cups represent any individual or class of people who act out of love for others. As a class, Cups represent philanthropists, charitable organizations, humanitarian groups, and similar situations, with the proviso that the reason for their activities is that they genuinely hope to benefit others, not because they have something to gain for themselves. In general, the Cups suit reveals unselfish devotion toward an individual, or toward and ideal.
If a Cups card represents a person, it describes someone who is generous and affectionate by nature whom you can depend on in a crisis, certainly to offer emotional support, and if it is within their power to give it, other kinds of assistance as well.
Situations or events described by cups are generally fortunate, and the suit represents good things in your life: love, happiness, good health, true friends, affectionate and pleasant surroundings or circumstances. This suit also indicates that the querent is capable of strong positive feelings toward the people or situations with which he or she is currently involved. Interpretations repeat over and again that the querent could be happy if only he or she would recognize and accept it.
Cups refers to all aspects of your emotional life. They indicate strong alliances and people or circumstances surrounding the querent. They can also make some very bad situations much easier to endure.

King of Cups
The King of Cups should bring to mind a paternal man, one who is just and kindly disposed toward the querent. This is a man who can be trusted absolutely; he favors the querent, and tends to be kind and generous in his relationships in general. Most interpretations also describe the King of Cups a cultivated and cultured man as well; interested in art and science, and possessing a creative intelligence.

Queen of Cups
The Queen of Cups should evoke the image of a kind and generous woman has maternal interest in the querent. She is a woman for whom you feel accepted, protected and emotionally secure. The Queen of Cups is a loving wife, good mother and devoted friend. As a person, she is intelligent and cultured; she is someone who knows how to love wisely, and who can (and will, if asked) wisely advise the querent in affairs of the heart. This card describes a situation in which there are no hidden traps for unsuspected enmities; you are among people you can trust, and in a situation in which you feel at home.

Knight / Prince of Cups
A young man with the same qualities his symbolic parents: The King and Queen of Cups. He is honest, intelligent and willing to help you in any way he can— a true and dependable friend, or even a lover. He is someone you can safely allow yourself to love, even if the relationship should break up at some point in the future. He is someone who can advise you on the true nature of the person you are interested in. This is someone with an imagination, and that allows him to understand other people’s feeling as well as his own.
Page / Princess of Cups
This card represents a young woman; possibly a daughter, younger sibling or peer. The Page of Cups is a sensitive young person with generally the same qualities as their elders, but with not as much “pull”. The appearance of this card in the reading indicates that there is someone with whom you are at this time connected, and who will render an important service to you.

Ace of Cups
The Ace of Cups symbolizes fertility, celebrations, merrymaking and a consummation of worthy union. The beginning here is of a marriage or other partnership that will be happy in its inception and of benefit to both parties. The appearance of the Ace in the reading also foretells the possibility of such a union; it predicts the beginning of a true and lasting love.

Two of Cups
One added to one: The Two of Cups symbolizes a partnership, a marriage or a union. Whatever the relationship being described, whether a new one upcoming or an old one strengthened, it will be based on harmony.

Three of Cups
This is a card of success and fulfillment. Some affair or enterprise in which you have been involved has been or will soon be concluded in plenty and merriment, to the complete satisfaction of all concerned. If a romantic relationship began earlier on, it is at this point that you are told both have fallen in love.

Four of Cups
This card represents a friendly warning. You are told that everything you need, every good thing you could possibly hope for, is available to you, but your dissatisfaction or negative outlook is keeping you from recognizing, appreciating, or taking advantage of it. You are so intent on your displeasure that you are missing fulfillment. One interpretation calls this the “bachelor/old maid” card, and states that the reason for the long delayed marriage is because of the querent’s “fussy disposition”. In effect, the warning is the same. The reason you are discontent is because you choose to be, not because your life is truly unfulfilled.

Five of Cups
Here again, it is your attitude that affects your outlook on the situation. Five of Cups is a card of losses and gains, but the probability is that you are seeing only the losses and not the gains. You have the opportunity for happiness, if you see the positive side of what you have. Five of Cups also predicts a union, possibly a marriage, and warns that whether or not it is a happy one will be up to you. You took lesser of two choices, or threw away positive gains; in effect, you cut off your nose to spite your face. You could have been happy and fulfilled, you still can be. It is entirely up to you. This is also a card of indecision; an ability to make up your mind on important issues.

Six of Cups
Your earlier discontent with current situations leads naturally to this card. Six describes thoughts of past loves and past happiness. It is a card of memories and looking back, of remembering times when you were happy, in the way a child is happy. Use these memories to relearn hoe to be happy and regain your innocence, and— most important— to remind you that you have been happy. The appearance of this card can indicate that someone or some event will force you to recognize the good in your life.


Seven of Cups
This is a card of imagination and vision. Some of the visions may be on the side of the fantastic: fairy dreams and castles in the air. Others may be reflective; other close to, but never quite attaining the status of actual plans. Basically you’re simply letting your imagination take its own course. Most interpretations suggest that this is a necessary process, especially at this time: clearing your mind of old ideas of misconceptions and examining different possibilities and potentials, however remote. It can lead to the creation of new and happier goals.

Eight of Cups
The meaning here is contradictory. The Eight of Cups refers to a situation, event or enterprise in which you have been involved or which you are planning. It suggests that things will turn out well; in fact, you’re being told you will receive what you’ve hoped for. But it also indicates that you’re displaying too much caution, and that doing so will lose for you what you hope to gain. In this case, it’s not that can’t see the good things you have, but because you’re too shy, too unsure of yourself or your personal worth, or too timid to make your move. If you don’t make your move soon enough, you may lose what you’ve worked for for so long. Again, make your move and you’ll find that the situation is not as intimidating as it seems from a distance. Either way, success is waiting; whether or not you get what you get what you want is up to you.

Nine of Cups
There is no negative reading in this card at all. It is a card of triumph, of complete success, almost of satiety. Everything you hoped and planned for has or will very soon come to be, and it is or will be as good if not better than you dreamed it would. This is sometimes called the “wish card”: it promises fulfillment, harmony and success in the projects described by other cards in the reading. You’ve done everything right up to now, and people and/or events are also conspiring in your favor. This is your hour.

Ten of Cups
This card describes what real love is all about and what it should lead to: contentment, domestic bliss, satisfaction in your accomplishments and relationships. You are surrounded by those you love and those who love you, and the things that matter to you also matter to them, and vice versa. The Ten of Cups is not only a favorable card, but an influential one: it strengthens good cards in the reading and negates negative ones.


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