Saturday 18 November 2017

Scorpio in the Court Cards

Last in our exploration of Scorpio on the tarot - but not least - Scorpio in the court cards. But which one – or ones?  Different traditions have different astrological correspondences when it comes to the Court Cards.  For instance, the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn chose to assign cardinal attributes (initiating things) to the Queens, fixed (maintaining order) to the Kings, and mutable (being able to adapt and transform) to the Knights.  Each court card is also linked to the elements, with Pages with Earth, Knights being associated with Fire, Queens with Water, and Kings with Air. 

Prince of Cups (trimmed):
© Thoth Tarot
Following this system, we end up with Fixed Water sign Scorpio being associated with the King of Cups (Air of Water).  The Thoth deck follows this convention, of course, being rooted in the Golden Dawn tradition - although Crowley chose to use Princes rather than Kings, just to add to the confusion! Scorpio – fixed Water: we’re talking about the mastery of emotions and strong passions.
I love this image because it really illustrates the idea of Scorpio having to plunge into the depths of the emotional realm in order to get to the bottom of things.  The eagle, another incarnation of Scorpio, pulls the seashell chariot, its wheels bearing the image of a scorpion. It carries the Prince over the surface of the water, ready to dive – but notice it hasn’t yet broken through that barrier, although the serpent (another Scorpio creature) emerging from the cup is looking down towards the water.  This reminds us that we need to recognize our desires, our fears, our cravings – whatever it is that’s driving us; only when we’re truly aware of them should we attempt to master them, otherwise we run the risk of drowning.  The waters appear tranquil, even stagnant perhaps - not yet disturbed by the powerful Prince on his chariot. Calm on the outside, yet powerful within.

Queen of Cups (trimmed):
© Druid Craft Tarot
If you work with a system that assigns Fixed-ness to the Queens, you’re looking at the Queen of Cups.  In the image from the Druid Craft Tarot, we see the Queen with one foot in the water, her throne behind her, a distance away. A serpent, symbol of transformation (and Scorpio) crawls out from behind it.  As the carrier of Scorpio's Fixed Water qualities, the Queen of Cups can be seen as being in control over her emotions and very self-contained – strong Scorpio qualities! She also trusts her instincts and is very intuitive and in touch with the watery world of emotions. Feelings cannot be ignored – or only at your peril.  Other Scorpio traits which could be seen in the Queen are seductiveness and mysteriousness! 

If you’ve enjoyed this post, you might be interested in my e-book, Astrology in Tarot, now available from Amazon.

DruidCraft Tarot created by Philip Carr-Gomm and Stephanie Carr-Gomm, illustrated by Will Worthington, published by Connections
Thoth Tarot created by Aleister Crowley, illustrated by Lady Frieda Harris, published by U.S. Games Systems, Inc.

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