Represented by the Earth element and associated with the astrological signs of Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn, the Pentacles are all about everything that is related to the physical world, such as money, career, the physical body, security, stability, health and nutrition.
Earthy people (people with strong earth energy in their birth charts) tend to be practical, down to earth, realistic and also wonderful at grounding themselves into the earth itself. They are often highly resourceful and naturally adept at understanding nature. They are the gardeners, cultivators, money-makers and builders of this world, often providing realistic, practical advice and methods of dealing with things, which is why they tend to attract those who have powerful water, air or fire energy in their charts. The earth people bring that security and stability which is so often needed in a world as tumultuous as this one.
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How Pentacles Teach Us
When we think of the Pentacles in Tarot, we are dealing with all aspects of this world that are physical in nature, as opposed to mental (Air) or energy (Fire) or emotional (Water).
The physical world provides some of the most important lessons we learn on a spiritual level. We learn about generosity and greed through money. We learn about sickness and health (and the subsequent devastation that often comes with them) through illness and disease. We learn about the earth itself through nutrition and waste. We learn about ourselves, our insecurities, our flaws and our virtues through the physical body.
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When we pull a Pentacles card in a reading, there is always a deep and spiritual meaning behind it. The physical world and the spiritual world are intertwined. They cannot be separated even though this is how it appears much of the time.
Take the 5 of Pentacles, for example. This card often shows a huddled figure out in the cold. It represents hardship and a sign of falling on hard times. It can represent lack of abundance, lack of money, ill-health and poverty.
While these aspects are related to money, it is often through hardship and having very little that we find ourselves on a spiritual level. We discover what type of person we were when we had everything as opposed to what type of person we are when we have nothing. We learn to appreciate what we had now that it is gone. We discover who our true friends are – who stands by us when times get tough and who flees. We are grateful for the little things in life and, slowly, we come to know ourselves at a deeper level, now that material comforts have been stripped from us. Our empathy levels naturally build as we can identify with those who have little and these lessons stay with us for our whole lives.
So what are the meanings of the Pentacles cards in the Tarot?
The Meaning of Pentacles from Ace to King
Each Tarot card has a variety of meanings attached to it depending on the context of the spread itself but if you are looking for some ideas as to what they could mean in your spread, the definitions below should provide some guidance.
- Ace of Pentacles: Focusing on concrete results, being practical, being realistic, the birth of a new idea, a financial opportunity, having a real-world impact.
- Two of Pentacles: Juggling several things at once, being flexible, being adaptable, the excitement of doing several things at once, working out how you are going to manage multiple tasks.
- Three of Pentacles: Teamwork, organising, planning, getting the job done, admiring a piece of work, proving your ability, putting your all into something.
- Four of Pentacles: Possessiveness, wanting to be in control, being greedy, penny-pinching, being stingy, setting limits and boundaries, being careful with your possessions, wanting everything to stay the same.
- 5 of Pentacles: Falling on hard times, losing your job, struggling to provide, suffering ill health, neglecting your body, feeling rejected, feeling that you are not good enough, shunned from society, feeling left out in the cold.
- 6 of Pentacles: To give and to receive, being sponsored or sponsoring someone, being taken care of or taking care of someone else, a healthy balance, give and take, leading and following, helping someone in hard times, feeling gratitude, donations, money handouts, charity, compassion, grovelling.
- 7 of Pentacles: Assessing your current situation, taking time to pause and reflect, experiencing frustration, double-checking you are still on course, seeing the results of your labour, thinking about a new approach.
- 8 of Pentacles: Working hard, putting in the effort, diligent studying, being completely absorbed in a project, determined to get results, paying attention to detail, researching, becoming an expert, handling all loose ends.
- 9 of Pentacles: Experiencing abundance, self-discipline, self-control, depending on yourself, independence, content, fulfilled, satisfied with your situation, having a comfortable or luxurious lifestyle, enjoying the finer things in life, falling back on your own resources.
- 10 of Pentacles: Experience affluence, having material abundance, a lasting foundation, finally seeing the results of your hard work, building a family, building a legacy, feeling secure, enjoying success, a run of good fortune, sticking with tradition.
The following are the Court Cards and can represent a person or the energy of the card in a reading.
- Page of Pentacles: A message of prosperity, eager to learn, a hard worker, student, college, learning, seeking qualifications, saving, investing, disciplined, solid start, aiming high, ambitious, great opportunities, carrying on the family business/legacy, setting long-term goals.
- Knight of Pentacles: Committed, dedicated, loyal, doesn’t stray from the path, stands by your side through thick and thin, cautious, practical, common sense, loving, stable, enduring, honest, patient, picky, good health, will toil and struggle for reward, willing to see it through to the end, defensive, slow, territorial, dull.
- Queen of Pentacles: Prosperity, homebody, down to earth, comforting, wealthy, luxury, dependable, faithful, methodical, loves nature, takes good care of health, fit body, physically/sexually attractive, healer, protective, finances improving, financial security, successful business, big-hearted, generous.
- King of Pentacles: Success, wealth, has built an empire, master of trade, high status, prestige, top of the game, boss, CEO, patient, strong principles, hard work is paying off, pay attention to details, generous, kind, flourishing business, help others to be successful, great physique, slow to anger, understanding, values quality, financial stability, provider, enterprising, reaping the reward of hard work.
The Pentacles Tarot cards each have their own story to tell and messages to send us. When we become familiar with the Pentacles, we begin to understand the powerful link between the material world and the spiritual world.
Our material ambitions are often linked to work and money. It is a crucial and fundamental part of life. Too often, however, we can become so absorbed in accumulating wealth and possessions that we forget the deeper meaning behind it all; in essence, we forget ourselves.
It is through the journey of the Pentacles Tarot cards that we are reminded of how material wealth is part of the journey towards spiritual wealth, and not the end goal itself. Through the Pentacles, we are forced to confront our own egos, assess our ultimate aims and analyse who we truly are as individuals. The wealth we accumulate throughout life teaches us much about our character and the world at large. Will we focus on material abundance for the sake of it or will we focus on the meaning behind it? Tarot can help us find the answer.
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♡ Iberia Tor