Pearls of Wisdom - Nine of Cups

Rede Seeker

What catches my eye first is the figure-8 circling the woman's head and the cup she has balanced on her crown. Why an '8' for the Nine of Cups? Then I realize it's an Infinity symbol on it's side. Then I notice the column of water that passes through it's center from the cup on the woman's head to the cup in her upper hand to the cup in her lower hand, ending in the pool. Any thoughts on the Infinity symbol on it's side? Maybe I'm misreading it and it's supposed to be a moebius loop.

The landscape, pool, and cups seem to glitter - glisten may be the better work, dew shining in the moonlight.

Everything seems to be 'coming up roses' here - hearts and flowers everywhere. So why the dark sky - why choose night rather than day for a progression of contentment/happiness? For that matter, the moon is yellow, a Harvest Moon, with yellow stars as companions. There is a white arc passing over the moon seeming to move from right to left with a cloud shedding droplets near its zenith.

There are two sets of nine cups. The first set is along the border of the card. The second set is in two parts; three held by the woman and six forming a pyramid on the right side of the card. All the cups have a stream of water flowing from it; most have two.

The woman's expression is ecstactic. She's wearing pearls and roses in her hair, a bright smile, and not much else. There is a bouquet of roses held in her left arm. The Green Earth Spirit reclining on the horizon seems to be smiling in her sleep.

The Runes Perthro (Evolutionary Force) and Laguz (Life Energy and Organic Growth) are carved on the columns. I expected Wunjo (Harmony of Life Forces). It's there if you do the math. Perthro is the 14th Rune in the Elder Futhark; Laguz is the 21st. 14 + 21 = 35 = 3 + 5 = 8 . Wunjo is the 8th Rune in the Elder Futhark.

The overall feel of this card to me is cleansing, revitalization, abundance.


This is one of the few cards in the deck that strikes me as a bit too busy. I find it hard to see what is actually going on here.

I love the way there is a pool here and the whole scene is reflected in that pool because I see the nines as aspects of The Hermit and so I see them as cards of introspection and assessment. The nines show a time when we look within ourselves to see how we got to where we are now and as well as looking within and looking back, we also look to the future, to the cycle we're just beginning.

Rede Seeker, I see that figure 8 as an infinity symbol turned sideways, I really have no clue what a moebius loop is.
I think the infinity symbol is to show that the Universe, the source of our emotions and feelings is infinite or that the depths of the unconscious is infinite. It makes me think of that phrase, 'as above, so below'.

Have you noticed how the liquid in the cups actually seems to come from the arc above the sun? The cloud actually looks a bit like a hand squeezing out the water so that it can flow into the cups that the woman has placed over her crown, heart and sacral chakras.
The water flows down from one cup to the next, connecting them all and in turn connecting them to the pool, probably signifying the unconscious.
I think that this is a reminder to remain open to new emotional experiences.

It's a lovely card and a very spiritual card, I like it a lot more now that I've really looked at it.

Rede Seeker

A Caduseus?

I hadn't thought of the top three cups being placed over those chakras - thanks for pointing that out.

As I look at the column of water, I wonder if there is an attempt to create a Caduseus/Staff of Hermes? The water flowing from cup to cup forms the axis; the crazy-8/infinity symbol on it's side forms one of the serpents that twine around it.

I agree, Sulis, this card is very busy, almost manic.