The World dancer demonstrates the ability to live happily in material reality while still being aware of the unseen and unbounded levels of being. The World brings us back full circle to the innocence of the Fool, but now the innocence is consciously chosen and embraced. World Questions: In what area of life have you come full circle? What have you completed? Are you ready to dance? World Things to Do: Celebrate the completion of a project. Share your wisdom. Start a new cycle.
All particles in an atomic nucleus are made up of quarks and leptons. There are six varieties of quark and six types of lepton, but atoms contain only three out of these twelve particles – two kinds of quark and one variety of lepton. The other quarks and leptons are unstable and decay rapidly into these three essential particles. What is the point of all those other extra particles? No-one knows. A similar sense of puzzlement, pointlessness and frustration is characteristic of the 4 of Cups. It’s possible to have too much of a good thing; in Cups the heavy energy of the four slows the flow of energy necessary to get the best out of this emotional suit. The result is boredom and stagnation. The 4 of Cups alerts us that we have become too passive and have forgotten to appreciate the many ways in which we are blessed.
There are six varieties of lepton. The commonest is the electron, one of the fundamental particles within an atom. Another two varieties of lepton, the muon and tau, are unstable and quickly decay into other particles. The remaining three, all varieties of neutrino, are very stable but almost massless (see the 4 of Swords). Neutrinos float freely around the universe, but electrons tend to be bound into atomic nuclei. This contrast between freedom and limitation expresses the fives’ energy of conflict in Pentacles. Here the battle is against physical reality itself. This is often experienced as a sense of lack or scarcity – traditional decks often show beggars in the snow. We may be able to imagine infinity and abundance, but material reality has limits. This card symbolises the struggles we endure when our infinite spirits collide with the very finite nature of the physical body and the everyday world.
The constellation of Bootes contains one of the sky’s brightest stars – Arcturus. In Greek mythology Bootes is better known as Arcturus, which means “guardian of the bear.” In one version of the legend, Bootes earned his place in the stars by inventing the plough. This association with earthy practicality is appropriate for the Page of Pentacles, who represents the qualities of the careful and diligent student. Here the flighty enthusiasm of the Pages is grounded, indicating someone who is inexperienced but also dedicated and tenacious. This Page represents the application of a new idea to everyday reality; the creating of real, practical strategies to put our ideas into action.
The mythological goddess rules the passionate emotions that love engenders. These find an apt metaphor in the superheated, seething atmosphere of the planet. The Queen of Wands, like the Greek goddess, has gained a certain level of comfort with powerful emotions. She is the independent, forceful woman who has the courage to be authentic, not cowed by stereotypical notions of femininity. This Queen contains the fiery energy of Wands by being true to her own nature and to the boldness of her grand plan.
Mercury is the nearest planet to the Sun and the second smallest after Pluto. Mercury was the messenger of Roman mythology (the equivalent of the Greek Hermes). He ruled all forms of communication, from speech to writing (and today he’d happily preside over radio, TV and the net). The Page of Swords is the ultimate student of communication. He only stops talking long enough to check his email or send a text or IM. His boundless desire for information can become gossipy or shallow, for this Page does not discriminate in terms of quality. He represents the curious child in us who is forever asking “why?”
Perseus is a large constellation that is known for its binary star system Algol as well as the Perseids, a famously dramatic meteor shower. In mythology Perseus was the son of the god Zeus and a mortal woman. He had an adventurous life, famously severing the head of the gorgon Medusa and rescuing the princess Andromeda from a sea monster. In a way he’s the archetypal romantic hero. The Knight of Cups symbolises this idealised active male, taking the qualities of skill and action into the realm of dreams and emotions. He is like a Grail Knight on a perpetual quest, seeking visions and ideals rather than material gain. His inspired, idealistic energy spurs us on to something greater than ourselves.
The Quantum Hermit represents this idea of a hidden world just waiting for discovery. He shines his light into mysterious dark corners and leads us far away from the crowds into reflection and contemplation. He may signal a physical withdrawal from the world or a more subtle realigning of attention away from the everyday into the deeper mysteries of the inner universe. Hermit Questions: Where do you need to refocus your attention? Are you attending to your inner light? Are you happy to be alone? What mysterious territory are you drawn to explore? Hermit Things to Do:Go on a retreat. Stay in bed. Meditate. Research or discover a subject by yourself. Go for a walk alone.
Particles do not actually decay in the sense of physically falling apart. They are simply changed into other, lighter particles through the effects of the weak force. This process is irrevocable – the particle can never return to its original form. In the suit of Cups, the combative energy of the fives is experienced as a distressing sense of loss. In any conflict there tends to be a winner and a loser and the 5 of Cups focuses is on what is lost. There is a tendency to forget about what has been gained – or transformed. When a particle decays, it has gone forever. This 5 is about recognising and acknowledging the finality of loss, but it also gently reminds us what has been gained.
Hadrons, baryons and mesons are different combinations of quarks. Hadrons are the composite particles that make up atomic nuclei. Baryons are the two varieties of hadron found in the nucleus of an atom – protons and neutrons. Mesons are a combination of quark and antimatter quark and are very unstable. Composite particles of quarks are the foundation of all the matter in the universe. Like quarks, we do not exist singly but in different groups and formations known as families, societies, cultures. We depend on others and others depend on us. In the 6 of Pentacles, the six’s energy of harmony is manifested in the material world as giving and receiving. This is the card of the philanthropist, but also of the person in need. Balance is maintained by those who have more than enough being willing to pass on the wealth, and by those who need more being open to receive. Inner harmony comes from being able to balance our giving and receiving - for we all do both in one way or another.
The Ace of Pentacles indicates the beginning of a new project in the physical, material world. The single Pentacle is the first building block, the first step along the road to manifesting something in reality.
Quarks are the building blocks of our world. Without them there would be no atoms and therefore no matter and no universe! The 7 of Pentacles symbolises a situation where we have gathered all that we need to build our future. Often showing a gathered harvest, it reminds us that we have an abundance of resources and options, more than we’ll ever need. The battling energy of the sevens is grounded in the 7 of Pentacles. We have already won – or the means for doing so is at our fingertips – and this card encourages us to count our blessings.
An atom is not a undifferentiated lump of matter but a grouping together of different subatomic particles; a nucleus of protons and neutrons (which are themselves made up of quarks), orbited by one or more electrons. The simple, elegant, fundamental structure of the atom can teach us much about building a solid and suitable foundation for our creative endeavours. The 3 of Pentacles takes the exciting vision of the 3 of Wands, makes a concrete plan, and sets about putting that plan to work.
the Sun card’s function in unifying the different aspects of our personalities. When the Sun appears in a reading it shows that we have reached a level of awareness when all of our different inner voices are singing in harmony. We are one step closer to expressing our true selves, and our inner light is beginning to shine. People are drawn to us because we radiate a quiet warmth and power, a strength that is drawn from our increased connection to our inner wisdom. Sun Questions: What are you becoming conscious of? What areas of your life are coming together? How is your awareness expanding? Who is being drawn to your inner radiance? Sun Things to Do: Express your ideas to others. Sing. Look at yourself naked in the mirror (you can sing at the same time too!). Be true to yourself.