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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Journey through My Decks: 9 of Cups (by Zanna)

In this series of posts, I plan to discuss all of the Tarot cards in order, using a different deck for each card. Today I'm exploring the NINE OF CUPS from the Millennium Tarot by Dorothy Simpson Krause (published by Viewpoint Studios).


In Dorothy Simpson Krause's Millennium Tarot (not to be confused with several other decks of the same or a similar name), the suit of Cups is the suit of love, intimacy, intuition, emotional energy, empathy, forgiveness, spirituality, and compassion. In the LWB (or LGB – little gold book), Marina Dubois writes that the question posed by the suit of Cups is "How can I help?"

The LWB does not identify the sources of the art depicted on the cards, nor does it discuss the various symbols used on the cards. All of the pips in the suit of Cups feature the same backdrop, which includes a ring that resembles an orbital path, with a solid circle at the top that could represent a full moon. At other positions on the ring are what appear to be moons in different phases (gibbous and crescent?). At the center of the ring is an orb that resembles the moon. Above it hangs what seems to be a mass of thick, gray clouds. The cups are ornate and heavy-looking. With their two handles, they remind me of "loving cups" – large ornamental vessels passed around at gatherings or, in modern times, given as awards or trophies.

I have no trouble making an association between the suit of Cups (linked with the element Water) and the Moon (ruler of the water sign Cancer). The Moon's association with emotions and intuition is well-established in astrology and elsewhere. The clouds, I think, could  represent the way emotions can create illusions and obscure reality. Clouds are also symbols of fertility (rain makes things grow). This, too, connects with the suit of Cups.

Book T* assigns the placement of Jupiter in Pisces to the Nine of Cups and gives it the title "The Lord of Material Happiness." It is described as suggesting "Complete and perfect realization of pleasure and happiness, almost perfect; self-praise, vanity, conceit. . . yet kind and lovable. . . High-minded, not easily satisfied with small and limited ideas." For Waite, the card indicates that "the future is. . . assured."

In my personal tarot system, Nines can indicate the basis for completion, endings, preparation (for a new cycle), growth through experience, perfection, integration, and fruition.

Dubois gives the following DMs for the Millennium Tarot Nine of Cups: "Spiritual and emotional good health. Prosperity and accomplishment, a balanced and happy time." Reversed: "Material success at the expense of healthy relationships and spiritual growth."

*Book T - The Tarot, Comprising Manuscripts N, O, P, Q, R, and an Unlettered Theoricus Adeptus Minor Instruction. A Description of the Cards of the Tarot with their Attributions; Including a Method of Divination by Their Use. A public domain manuscript.

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~ Zanna