Saturday, 28 June 2014

Cancer in the Minor Arcana: the Two of Cups

Cancer is linked to three ‘pip’ cards in the watery suit of Cups.  Because Cancer is a cardinal sign, we look to the 2, 3 and 4 of the suit to find the planetary correspondences (For more information on this system of Planetary and Zodiacal dignities, I recommend Elizabeth Hazel’s Tarot Decoded, published by Weiser, 2004). In the system I follow, the Two of Cups is linked to Venus in Cancer (as well as to the first ten days of Cancer).   

Universal Waite Tarot
Let’s look again at the sign of Cancer, the first of the Water signs we meet in the zodiac. The element of Water is associated with feelings and emotions, the ebb and flow of which can tap into our vulnerability. The shell of the crab represents the protection against this vulnerability, usually through the long-term emotional security and nurturing of family (not necessarily blood-relatives).

Wildwood Tarot
Now for Venus.  Venus has been called ‘the principle of attraction’. It describes our appreciation for beauty (a very subjective area!) and reflects our taste in all sorts of things (dress, art, music, etc) as well as giving us clues about the relationships we’re drawn to.  So, if we combine this with what we know about Cancer, we can see how the idea of relationship, friendship and commitment – all common keywords for the Two of Cups – play out in this card.  It takes the emotion of the Ace, divides it into two (the feminine and masculine, if you like), creating the idea of duality and balance – essential ingredients in a good relationship.  Venus in Cancer – the Two of Cups: the need to feel a sense of security in relationships, romantic or platonic.  It’s about giving and receiving love, sharing, and a deep emotional exchange in a protective, nurturing environment.

Universal Waite Tarot created by Mary Hanson-Roberts & Pamela Colman-Smith, published by US Games Systems, Inc.

Wildwood Tarot created by Mark Ryan and John Matthews, illustrated by Will Worthington, published by Connections

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