Alchemical Study Group - Five of Staffs


On this card we see a hand with flaming fingertips. In the background are water and hills covered with vegetation.

What a wonderful card! I just love this representation compared with the RWS versions. In the LWB Place calls this card 'The Burning Hand' saying it represents creative energy.

So if the flaming finger-tips represent our creative energy then this card may be a reminder that we need to find an outlet for that creative urge, or else we may end up burning ourselves up, with frustration perhaps. Sometimes we begin a new project full of enthusiasm and inspiration and rush at it 100 miles an hour, the risk of course is that we burn ourselves out. Perhaps this card could also be a reminder to start slowly and keep the flame alive, rather than risking burnt fingers

There is another thread on this forum somewhere called 'six word memoirs' I think. It asks you to choose a card and then think of six words to capture the meaning. I used this card and this is what I came up with...

Pace yourself to avoid getting burned


I just got this deck yesterday so I´m just starting to study it. I don´t know why but I think this is one of the scariest cards in this whole deck.. The explanation above makes perfect sense and I understand what this card means.

But it is scary nevertheless..


The 5 Staffs is indeed an interesting card, depicted by a hand with 5 flaming finger tips while the body of the fingers appear to be scorched. As pointed out in the post above it is named the Burning Hand and relates to creative energy.

This card makes me think of trying to do too much, allowing all that creative energy to burst forward in an uncontrolled manner so that instead of achieving whatever it was that one wanted to do they end up creating difficulties and obstacles. It can illustrate here how when we are not disciplined in putting our thoughts into action and by allowing that burning desire to take over, it actually shows us the problems/struggle that may arise in translating those thoughts into something material.

As Lisa pointed out in the section on 5's it is the element that adds the spiritual unity to the material wholeness expressed by four so perhaps this burning hand talks of a burning desire and the energy needed to expand and explore, but all spiritual growth does not come without some challenge and as this card suggests here, one needs to use their creative energy in a structured way or they may just get burned.


Feisty Kat

Is it possible to get the quote from the book for this one?


Did you still want the quote for this one? If so I'll need to dig up my book and type it in when I get a chance. :)

Feisty Kat

sapienza said:
Did you still want the quote for this one? If so I'll need to dig up my book and type it in when I get a chance. :)

yes, please!


From the book:

A hand's fingers are transformed into burning staffs. Five is the number of creativity; this is the creative hand of an artist, inventor, scientist or entrepreneur. The fire is the energy and enthusiasm directed into the project - but will the fire consume the hand, and thus the life energy of the creator? This will not happen if the hand is a channel for energy from a higher force.

Tarot wisdom: You are enthusiastic and inspired by your work or other fires (channels for your energy). Your creative energy is at its peak, fuelled by the spirit. If your work is all-consuming, or if you are not in touch with your higher self, the message warns that you risk burning yourself up. Do not become a workaholic.