Monday, August 12, 2013

Eight of Cups - "Make A New Plan, Stan"

Tarot's Eight of Cups
RWCS Deck© US Games
There are many reasons and many ways to leave.  Just ask Paul Simon.  Tarot's Eight of Cups shows us the whys and wherefores of a departure set against the backdrop of emotional need.  In the RWCS depiction we see a figure walking away from eight carefully stacked cups that rest on the sand.  Several things become apparent right away.  First, the passion for the situation or relationship is gone.  Note the flat water, the bland expression on the moon.  Even the night sky lacks depth and interest – no clouds, no stars.

Secondly, the figure walking away wears a red cloak and boots.  Red is the traditional color of love and passion.  Clearly, this person is taking these emotions with them as neither can be supported in a bland and characterless environment.  More obscurely, if you invert the card, the red cloak and boots roughly resemble the shape of a physical heart. ( Seriously.  I checked lots of on-line medical images of hearts to come up with this one. Humor me.) Right-side up you have an inverted heart.  This could represent a heart no longer engaged, one that is broken, or one simply in turmoil.

The cups themselves also tell a story.  They rest on sand – certainly not the best foundation for a complex structure. At first glance we can see the eight cups separated into two numbers, five and three.
In tarot, fives express loss and conflict, threes show the deepest meaning of the element, which in this case is water, or emotions.  In short, we have a person struggling with something that no longer promotes their growth and development as an individual.

All is not lost for our hero in red, however.  He carries a wand, representing the action he takes, which in this case is leaving the situation behind and heading for something better, perhaps more challenging.  At least it will be more interesting.  Note that the ground while rocky, is firmer than sand and has a rugged flavor to it.  There is every chance that our hero (you, of course) will be able to build something lasting with a much more solid foundation.

Whether you are contemplating ending a relationship, a friendship, or changing a work situation, you can draw a lot of comfort from the Eight of Cups.  Let the traveler within you guide your steps.  Try a meditation focusing on the images in this card.  Use the eight as the significator in a good old-fashioned Celtic Cross spread.  Remember, a journey, even a particularly difficult one, happens one step at a time.


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