Card by Card – King of Cups

Raidaint Rider-Waite Tarot

If you missed the last Card by Card post on the Two of Cups, you can read about it here.

Once again, I’ll be taking a look at several variations from different decks and gathering that particular Author and/or Artists thoughts and perspectives.

The King of Cups is the randomly drawn COTW-card of the week.   What does it mean when you receive this card in a one card daily drawing or it turns up in a spread?

The first King of Cups we will be looking at is from the Radiant Rider-Waite Tarot published by U.S. Games Systems, Inc. 2003.

Divinatory Meanings:  Fair man, man of business, law, or divinity; responsible, disposed to oblige the Querent; also equity, art and science, including those who profess science, law and art; creative intelligence.  ~Arthur Edward Waite, The Pictorial Key to the Tarot

Cups are associated with the element of Water and deal mainly with our emotions.

King of Cups as Lover Archetype

Understanding the Tarot Court by Mary K. Greer & Tom Little

     “Characteristics include vitality, passion, and appetite for life.  The lover is deeply sensual and not ashamed of his pleasure or his body.  Experiences an intimate contact with everything around him, and feels primal hungers passionately.  He wants to touch the world in its totality.  He is aesthetically attuned to the environment.” 

This first pair are from Sol Invictus – The God Tarot by Kim Huggens & Nic Phillips (Schiffer Publishing 2007) & Legend – The Arthurian Tarot by Anna-Marie Ferguson (Llewellyn Publications 1995)

Kings of Cups - Sol Invictus & Legend the Arthurian Tarot

Sol Invictus:  Seated on a throne in the vast ocean, Sumerian water-god Enki pulls a man out of the wave.  With one hand he controls the water around him, playing with it, mastering it, whilst with the other he saves a man from it-enki understands both the creative and destructive powers of water.  Emotional healing, compassion, sympathy, empathy, help, aid, guidance, emotional detachment, emotional control, confidante, healer, doctor, advisor, pearls of wisdom, peace, peace-keeper, morality, father-figure.

Legend the Arthurian Tarot:  A mature, dignified man of authority.  Someone who may be relied upon for guidance and assurance.  A man of strong faith and liberal views.  A person who displays an interest in the arts and sciences.  One whose strength lies in his mind, which when combined with his uncanny foresight, is capable of orchestrating and achieving long-term goals.  {The Fisher King}

The next pair are from the Sun and Moon Tarot by Vanessa Decort (U.S. Games Systems, Inc. 2010) & The Mary-El Tarot by Marie White (Schiffer Publishing 2012)

King of Cups - Sun and Moon Tarot & Mary-El Tarot

Sun and Moon Tarot:  Faithful devotion and true love.  Emotions under control.  The king holds the Holy Grail-the cup of love.  Open, spontaneous, and extroverted.  The white horse denotes mental strength.  Cancer is associated with emotions and feelings.  The moon over the moving water illuminates depth of feeling.

Mary-El Tarot:  The King of Cups is mastery over your own subconscious, your black horse you animal nature and desires.  If you can master this you can rise above everything and see the face of god, or the most objective truth there is that is at the center of the universe.  Master of your subconscious, knowing the self enough to not be a slave to it but to learn from it and derive power from it, for it is infinitely wise.  Intoxication. Good sleep.

The last pair are from The Mystic Faerie Tarot by Linda Ravenscroft & Barbara Moore (Llewellyn Publications 2007) & Joie de Vivre Tarot by U.S. Games Systems, Inc. 2011)

King of Cups -The Mystic Faerie Tarot & Joie de Vivre Tarot

Mystic Faerie Tarot:  The King of Cups is a compassionate and caring leader.  he probably cares for about people’s happiness than about efficiency.  He would no doubt be happier being a museum curator than head of a financial institution.  His love of all things beautiful and his frustrated artistic desires may sometimes distract him from the task at hand.

Joie de Vivre Tarot:  Healing, harmony, communication, loyalty, integrity.  King Serenity, the kind and patient King of Cups, is a natural healer.  Gathering energy from a cup of light, he takes action to spread his powers of repair to those in need.  He’s loyal to his purpose, and possesses great knowledge drawn from the heart.

Author Anna Burroughs Cook - Tarot Dynamics Unleashed – has this to say about Card 37, the King of Cups:  Emotional/Initiative.  Kings trigger or enhance your initiative.  Whatever your gender or situation, the King can enable you to set new wheels in motion, or handle on-going situations more effectively-whether to gain an upper hand in matters or mount a solid defense.

     “The King of Cups lends you the cunning of a Scorpio, the obscurity of a Pisces and the sense of duty of a Cancer, to probide you with a truly unique approach to obtaiing your objectives and frustrating you adversaries.  Your positeive character, shrewd judgment and natural caring enable you to tackle your responsibilities with an open mind and a sense of fun, almost as if you were planning a picnic.” 

        “Card 37 intensifies your desire and ability to impress, improve, preserve, defend or even destroy whatever (or whoever) you feel to be yours, depending upon your mood at the moment.”

Please join me over the next week as I’ll be looking at the King of Cups more in depth and combined with a new COTD each day.  Stop over to the New Paths Tarot -Facebook page and get in the discussion!

I hope this has shed some new light and understanding on the King of Cups!

Until next time, Happy Tarot’ing and May Your Journey be an Enchanted one.