The Goddess’ name is Astraea and the card itself represents one of the four cardinal virtues: Justice, Temperance, Fortitude and Prudence, represented in Tarot , according to A.E. Waite, (the man who commissioned the artwork for this deck).
Her job today is to listen to all sides and figure out what everyone needs (not necessarily what they want) and find a way to make that happen.
See? There is no blindfold on this representation of Justice – she can examine clearly and weighs all options carefully, balancing between the physical and spiritual.
Her pose suggests two other cards in the major arcana, both that of the Magician (I) and the High Priestess (II). Seated between veiled columns, Justice understands the spiritual significance of the Truth she guards.
Pointing above with the sword, and below to the Earth with her scales, in this numbering (11) the place of the Magician is also reflected in Justice by the natural outcome of one’s will and workings. It is both the just reward and the unavoidable consequence thereof.
In the pantheon of ancient Egypt we find the symbol of the scales associated with the goddess Ma’at. At the end of life, she places an ostrich feather on one side of the scales, balanced against the human heart in the other. But what burdens the heart? The feather weighed deceit hidden in the heart, but this is perhaps not all.
Her sword is aloft in mid-motion, and her decision is clear. Our Goddess of Natural Law, though seated, is active on the bench, ready to weigh or strike as needed.
With the arrival of this card, her long awaited verdict is pronounced.
Let us be grateful for the utility of the waiting sword to cut away what weighs us down. Then, light-hearted, we may be open to receive her truth.
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.