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Reading the 5s


Simply from the numerology, I see 5 as meaning a set:

5 fingers on a hand,
5 points on a star,
5 directions on Leonardo da Vinci's Virtruvian Man
5 Books of Moses.

I have also heard that 5 is the "number of grace" with 4 being the human elements and 5 (like the 5th element or Major Arcana) being the higher dimension.

Certain views of the Hierophant (V) night confirm this idea???

However, the 5s in the minor arcana all seem a little negative (although I know all cards are +and -), like the more eastern view of odd numbers. (In China, for example, we always served an even number of dishes to guests.)

I do see a stained glass window in 5 of Coins and two upright cups in 5 of Cups. However, like the 7s, the cards do not always speak to my understanding of thee numerology.

???
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I see the fives as seeking balance, and striving for it. They have to work hard to stay stable as they will inherently tip to one side or the other. In order to balance there has to be an odd one out. This is sort of like how you may be seeing five fingers, but in reality you're looking at four fingers and one thumb. The four fingers are stable as fingers, and the thumb is working so hard to join them, but is off to the side, has a different purpose and name, is fed by a different artery, and does its own thing.
This tension (between looking for balance and having an odd one out) is why the pips strike many as 'negative.' They imply a sense of conflict, or of loneliness, or of wanting something that cannot be had.
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Smile Changing the tune....


AnemoneRosie makes a good point. You have to think of the numbers as less related to things like 5 fingers or 5 pointed star more in terms of numerology. 5's in numerology are the number of individuality, of change, of drama. Why? Because 4 was very solid--like a chair with four legs, or the 4 corners of a house. Add in that extra "1" and the balance is thrown off. How is this individual, this change, this "upset" to fit?

The Hierophant (#5) is all about this. He represents the continual battle between society vs. the individual. The Hierophant uses tradition (cultural norms, institutionalized religion) to keep everyone on the same page, everyone singing the same hymn. But that means that the Hierophant always has to deal with individuals who question those norms, and want to sing their own tunes. Ever see the movie "Sister Act"? Like that. 5's are always the Hierophant's challenge. How will YOU deal with the individual who upsets the rock solid traditions of the 4's. Or are YOU the individual who is unhappy with those traditions? Or maybe the one trying to maintain them?

It's not happy, peaceful situation, no. But the cards aren't about positives/negatives. They're about life and what we have to face in life. Sometimes, what we want, believe, think will be challenged. The 5's ask us to consider, each time that happens, whether what we want/believe/think is worth taking a stand and creating a stalemate. Maybe it is, and maybe it isn't. The 5's ask us to think about that. If we enter into this, we will have to take a stand. Is it worth it? Like with the Hierophant: traditions and such are VERY important to him. He believe that to surrender them, is to lose identity. And so he is the sort who'd be thrown in jail for his beliefs and never surrender them, even if doing so would lead to comfort. The 5's ask you that: who are you? And what makes you you? And what will you hold onto...even if it causes trouble for you? Even...might you be holding onto something that doesn't matter that much out of pride? Go to the 6's and compromise, give and take will gain you harmony.
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Cool Finding a way out of conflict (5) vs. Getting past an obstacle (7)


Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelie View Post
I do see a stained glass window in 5 of Coins and two upright cups in 5 of Cups. However, like the 7s, the cards do not always speak to my understanding of thee numerology.
Those "two's" certainly indicate the "way out" of the 5's conflict. That all is not lost, for example, in the 5/Cups. Mostly, however, the 5's are "you're upsetting things, get in line!" or "I think you should allow me in the line as I am" (that's the two people outside the church...the church says, "You can't come in as you are" and they say, "We should be allowed in as we are..." Stalemate with neither side happy.

5's are "how much does this matter to you? How willing are you to stand by what you believe/want etc. and not bend?" 5's are all about questioning what matters to you. At what point do you say, "That's not negotiable"? 6's are about restoring equality. You give some, you get some and harmony returns. This *is* negotiable.

7's are more about being able to get past a roadblock. Something isn't working/happening, and the person isn't able or willing to see why it's not working/happening. This is because there is an element of illusion in the 7's ("it worked before when I did this..."). Everything came together smoothly and beautifully in the 6's...but it's not in the 7's and the individual is left frustrated. 7 is often the number of the seeker. Meaning the person has to actively search for and find the truth. And that may take time and effort. But once they find it, they will get past this obstacle in their path.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnemoneRosie View Post
I see the fives as seeking balance, and striving for it. They have to work hard to stay stable as they will inherently tip to one side or the other. In order to balance there has to be an odd one out. This is sort of like how you may be seeing five fingers, but in reality you're looking at four fingers and one thumb. The four fingers are stable as fingers, and the thumb is working so hard to join them, but is off to the side, has a different purpose and name, is fed by a different artery, and does its own thing.
This tension (between looking for balance and having an odd one out) is why the pips strike many as 'negative.' They imply a sense of conflict, or of loneliness, or of wanting something that cannot be had.
This explanation kind of resonates with my previous-to-tarot understanding of the number 5.

The opposable thumb is like that 5th element, the 5th dimension, the Major Arcana.
It's something beyond the physical map of north-south-east-west.
Yet it's the one crucial thing needed or the higher that contains the rest.

I always thought this was why people said 5 was the number of grace.
(I couldn't remember where I heard this bit of folklore but then saw this claim somewhere again on the Internet just the other day.)
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Numerology is, generally speaking, previous-to-tarot. So if you have an understanding of that older system, then it will help you.
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Quote:
by Thirteen
5's in numerology are the number of individuality, of change, of drama. Why? Because 4 was very solid--like a chair with four legs, or the 4 corners of a house. Add in that extra "1" and the balance is thrown off. How is this individual, this change, this "upset" to fit?
The extra 1 could perhaps be super, though, the weird one--like Edward Scizzorhands or, maybe, the cowboy Shane. Superman. The outsiders.

Quote:
by Thirteen
The Hierophant (#5) is all about this. He represents the continual battle between society vs. the individual. The Hierophant uses tradition (cultural norms, institutionalized religion) to keep everyone on the same page, everyone singing the same hymn.
The shaman and the priest have one foot in the grave, being somewhat beyond this world. The Jedi Knights restore balance to the force. The five books of Moses, along with the priesthood, were supposed to be a higher law than human courts.

So the 5 of Coins tells me to hunger and thirst for righteousness and I will be filled, to seek first the kingdom of God and the lesser things (on Maslo's hierarchy of needs) will be added. Look to the light shining through the stained-glass window on the church, even though in the natural things look bad right now.

The 5 of Cups hints that there is a bridge beyond this present grief, a hope not yet felt.

Could the breakout of fiery energy on the 5 of Wands and the power play/giving up on the 5 of Swords maybe speak to this? I'm not sure.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnemoneRosie View Post
Numerology is, generally speaking, previous-to-tarot. So if you have an understanding of that older system, then it will help you.
Ha, ha. I meant my personal "previous to tarot." Sorry. I have no idea if the folklore I encountered arose before or after tarot in history.

I did study runes first, which must be older. However, the meanings of the runes I probably received from current folk communities. Online.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thirteen View Post
Those "two's" certainly indicate the "way out" of the 5's conflict. That all is not lost, for example, in the 5/Cups. Mostly, however, the 5's are "you're upsetting things, get in line!" or "I think you should allow me in the line as I am" (that's the two people outside the church...the church says, "You can't come in as you are" and they say, "We should be allowed in as we are..." Stalemate with neither side happy.

5's are "how much does this matter to you? How willing are you to stand by what you believe/want etc. and not bend?" 5's are all about questioning what matters to you. At what point do you say, "That's not negotiable"? 6's are about restoring equality. You give some, you get some and harmony returns. This *is* negotiable.

7's are more about being able to get past a roadblock. Something isn't working/happening, and the person isn't able or willing to see why it's not working/happening. This is because there is an element of illusion in the 7's ("it worked before when I did this..."). Everything came together smoothly and beautifully in the 6's...but it's not in the 7's and the individual is left frustrated. 7 is often the number of the seeker. Meaning the person has to actively search for and find the truth. And that may take time and effort. But once they find it, they will get past this obstacle in their path.
Alternate (???) interpretation:

4 (Emperor/4 of Coins): stability of this world, this society, storing up earthy treasures

5 (Hierophant/5 of Coins): instability of this world, heavenly treasures

6 (Lovers/6 of Coins): communion in Eden on the 6th day/giving and receiving

7 (Chariot/7 of Coins): crowning victory/ completion of work of creation, Sabbath rest
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Cool "Thy will be done."


Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelie View Post
The 5 of Cups hints that there is a bridge beyond this present grief, a hope not yet felt.
But that's the thing. The 5/Cups hints that there is hope...but the 5/Cups is the point at which hope is NOT accepted. What I'm saying is, you're missing the point if you see the 5/Cups as "hope." It's about dealing with loss. ALL the 5's are about dealing with loss. Or, rather, the right way to deal with loss. In the 5/Cups, the person would rather wallow in emotion, in the loss, than accept what still remains. The 5/Cups says: Don't do that!
Quote:
Could the breakout of fiery energy on the 5 of Wands and the power play/giving up on the 5 of Swords maybe speak to this?
The 5/Wands is where the star football player in high school goes to college and realizes he's one of many star quarterbacks and they're all equally good. All those 5 men in the 5/Wands have realize that they're no longer "Stars." But they can't give up on the idea of proving they're special. So they fight each other which is a waste of energy. 5/Wands says: "Don't do that! Accept that there are others as good as you." (Because if they all accepted that, they might work together as a team, and win that way, right?)

5/Swords card is called "Failure" and in the RWS image, the two who've lost the "argument" are grumbling and angry and upset. That's not the best way to deal with failure. And certainly, if we're talking about this in religious terms, handling loss and failure with grace is how you "win" in many a holy test. It's not about succeeding, it's about accepting. Look at Job.

The 5's aren't about "look on the bright side!" or even "look to god, and you will be saved"...they're about learning how to say: "thy will be done." Which the Hierophant certainly says daily...and advices others to do as well.
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