The suit of Cups represents the element of Water and symbolizes the emotions, sub-consious, ancestral or family ties, and the harvest of all these. Six is the number of Beauty, being both stable and crystalline in geometry and the first multiplicity of three. Together, the Six Cups reminds us of the pleasant times of yesteryear. It also represents the hidden beauty of right now.
This card, if it were a yoga pose, would be ‘The Plank’. The pose, lying on one’s back, is easy. Remaining alert and aware in the posture is very difficult. This everyday moment in all its loveliness and innocence is the sweet stuff of life, and fragile by its very nature.
It is also easy to forget that we are the giver of the blessing, and it’s joyful recipient too. We are also the fellow wandering off the page, unaware of his part in the scene or the beauty he leaves behind.
The older child enjoys a fragrant bouquet and passes the cup along to the little girl. His action shows the younger child the enjoyment of ‘ordinary’ pleasures. By sharing the younger one the beauty of the flower and its scent, he also doubles his own joy. The little one is eager and patient for the gift. It is only a momentary whiff, in truth. Yet, she contributes her joyful and innocent enthusiasm for the moment. It wouldn’t be the same without her there too.
Beside the boy, a stone is carved with a large “X”. It marks this spot in history, in time, in memory. It is a touchstone and a marker. A place to return to when we would recall joy. It is today. Above the stone, is also pictured a man walking away without regard for the brief and shining moment that plays in life behind him. He is no doubt busy at his work, and does not realize what he misses, what he might have been part of.
On the Shadow: It is also very easy to loose oneself in nostalgia and or regret, forgetting all the harsh lines of present reality in the comfortable distance of yesterday. Remember, the cup is filled with a momentary fragrance, and it’s very beauty is defined by it’s brevity. The trick is to be fully aware of the moments as they arrive.
Images from The Smith-Waite Tarot Centennial Edition Deck are used in this blog. They feature the artist, Pamela Colman Smith’s, original coloring and lovely back design. The cards are a bit oversized and printed on sturdy cardstock. This deck is one of my personal favorites. =:->AD
Rider-Waite images used with permission of U.S. Games Systems, Inc., Stamford, CT 06902. c. 1971 by U.S. Games Systems, Inc.