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the suits & their element

Forums ► Fortune Telling ► the suits & their element
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the suits & their element
Post # 1
when orginizing my cards and put them in order, ace on top. I lay them out in the four directions.
North I placed the wands, for its earthy and and the green leafs on the branch. Earth represents fertility and foundation and patience.
West is water, its obviose that the cups fall into water. For water is held in a cup Water is knowledge, emotion and intutition. Like water, energy "flows" in this domain
South is fire, i assigned swords with fir, since fire is distuctive as a sword. fire is will, pasion, and transformation.
Last but not least, air and the penticals. After two years of working with the Rider Waite deck, I could never confirm that air and pentacles go together. Air rules thought and knowledg. traveling and free spirited, but observing the cards the pentacles look more earthy while wands looks more phylisophical. (if that makes sense)
but my only reason for asigning pentacla to air is because of the way all the aces look, cups on the left with hand facing that direction and the pentacle facing oppisite.

im just curiouse to what other people believe and think. to help give me some perspective

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Re: the suits & their element
By: / Knowledgeable
Post # 2

I learned it like this:

earth-pentacles, money, material wealth

air-wand, the wand is the embodiment of intelligence

water-chalice, obviously its the only thing that holds water.

fire-sword, projection of will.

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Re: the suits & their element
Post # 3
thanks :)
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Re: the suits & their element
By: / Novice
Post # 4
Traditionally, the elemental attributes of the pip cards are:
Pentacles - Earth, North
Cups - Water, West
Swords - Air, East
Wands - Fire, South

There are some traditions that will have a problem with wands as Fire and Swords as Air. Originally the swords were daggers. Not many decks are drawn like that these days. A sword is definately a fire item. It cuts, seperates and kills. But a dagger, or a knife, can be used to create, carve, prepare food, not to mention to eat with. And yes, it can kill. So can my claw hammer, my brass candleholder and my statue of Anubis if I use it correctly. (Boy, he would be mad at me!) But the dagger is a tool. It is directed by the intellect, therefore falls under the realm of Air.

The element of Fire is symbolic of force, desire and movement. It is the primal urge to create. Fire is action and movement, going from point A to point B. A line. A sword simply cuts. The wand directs force toward a goal. The sword, while it shows an aspect of fire, does not show the nurturing aspect of fire. Hence, the wand as the symbol for fire.

Also, when you look at the qualities of each element, Fire is the raw, agressive active energy. A wand can be more raw or rough, as it is a piece of wood. With the steel in a dagger or sword it must be refined. Air is the refined active energy. It is not as aggressive or powerful as fire, but it has focus and control, two things you better have when using a sword. Also, if you want to think of it like this, wood burns, steel does not.

As far as the directions, they are based on the wind patterns. remember that much of the occult knowledge we study originated in Eruope and Asia Minor. So, wind from the north would be cold and dry. Wind from the south would be hot and dry. Wind coming from the west would be cold and wet. Finally, wind from the east would be hot and moist.

Hope this helps.


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