In tarot, there are a total of 78 cards; 14 of which make up the suite of cups.
The deck is divided into two main categories:
The major arcana, which is made up of the main 22 recognizable cards
The minor arcana, which is made up of four suites. These suites are the the suites of cups, wands, swords, and pentacles and each suite contains 14 cards.
Obviously there are many, many more cards within the minor arcana than in the major arcana, but today we are only focusing on 14 of those cards or one entire suite.
If you haven’t learned about the minor arcana as a whole, please refer to my post here before you continue on.
Differences and Similarities
So, the suite of cups will have a total of 14 cards, which are: the ace of cups, the two of cups, the three of cups, the four of cups, the five of cups, the six of cups, the seven of cups, the eight of cups, the nine of cups, the ten of cups, the page of cups, the knight of cups, the queen of cups, and the king of cups.
The page, knight, queen, and king are all known as the court cards. One through ten will take on a similar meaning as the other three one-tens because all of the numbers will carry a quality that is alike. It is the suites that will set them apart from the numbers and other court cards. On the other hand, all of the cup cards will have a similar quality and it will be the numbers that set them apart instead. You can look at it either or both ways.
The cup cards are all about: the emotional self, feelings, intuition, dreams, depth, wisdom, the feminine, psychic abilities, gut feelings, the third eye, the heart, love, one’s love life, etc.
Cups and Water:
So why are the cup cards about these things though?
Well, if you take a look at the images of the cups cards, you will notice that inside of the cups, most of them are filled with water. The cups aren’t just about the actual noun: cups. It is about the symbolism of the cups.
What do you do with a cup? You drink from it. What do you drink from it? Well, obviously liquid. Maybe you don’t always drink water, but that is the idea of the cups anyway.
Each suite in the tarot is a symbol of one of the four elements because without these, we wouldn’t be alive: Water, Air, Fire, and Earth.
Keep in mind that hundreds and hundreds of years ago, cool-aide and soda didn’t exist. It was mostly water and wine or ale. Water, however, is one of the things that keep us alive. Without water, we could obviously could not survive because our bodily functions could not properly sustain us.
Water also makes up the majority of the earth’s surface and we have not explored much of it’s deepest depths because it is that deep. If we did, we would implode from the pressure. Water can freeze and water can rise into humidity. You can boil it until it is a scorching temperature. You can turn it into a gas. You can turn it into bubbles.
Water can take on any form and transform infinitely!
I would say that water is the most adaptable thing that I can think of. It is one of the most important and useful things I can think of. It is in the very air we breathe. It is in it in which we wash ourselves clean. It is water that leaks from our eyes when we are sad or even happy. It can catch us swimming and cause us to be swept away in it’s treacherous and high tides, drowning us. Water soothes us, quenches us, and purifies us anew.
It is water that will fill your tarot cup. That is why water is what it is to FEEL.
Cups = Water = To Feel
Cup Card Meanings:
Ace of Cups- New feelings, new lover, new intuitive information, etc.
Two of Cups- When two people bond or commit to one another.
Three of Cups- Harmony among friends, your team, or other group.
Four of Cups- Withdrawal, organization, dissatisfaction, boredom, etc.
Five of Cups- Emotional strife, conflicts of the heart, hurt feelings or being let down, etc.
Six of Cups- Childlike innocence, compassion, sympathy, or helpfulness.
Seven of Cups- Having big imagination, dreaming, not being realistic, etc.
Eight of Cups- Betrayal, broken heart, misplaced trust, shocking blow to heart, etc.
Nine of Cups- Having made it through tough times with more love and joy than before.
Ten of Cups– Emotional fulfillment, love as an accomplishment, satisfaction and appreciation.
Page of Cups– Someone young, highly imaginative, magical, innocent, and emotional, all pages are also known as “messenger cards“
Knight of Cups- Good-hearted, giving, acts of love and gratitude, acting upon dreams, a reminder to continue putting out good and it will come back to you eventually, etc.
Queen of Cups- Emotionally mature and balanced, highly emotionally intelligent, extremely sensitive and intuitive, connected to feminine wisdom, serious depth, etc.
King of Cups– Someone who has mastered their emotions, emotionally balanced, embraces feelings without being swept away by them, has love for all, etc.
From Within the Labyrinth,