The Temperance card is the fourteenth card of the Major Arcana. In the Rider-Waite deck, the card reveals a winged angel-like figure in the center, with one foot on the ground and the other in the flowing water.
This is symbolic of a delicate balance between being grounded in one’s energy, at the same time being willing to step foot into the free-flowing movement of our human experience.
In her hands, the angel holds two cups, and she is captured in the midst of pouring a flowing liquid between the two cups, symbolic of the circulation and intertwining or exchanging of energies.
Moreover, this signifies the reconciliation of opposites in a middle ground and the prudence to water our wine down, avoid extremes, and live with moderation and emotional restraint.
The flowing white robe that the figure wears, the lush greenery, the distant mountains, and the rising sun in the background all serve to convey a message of serenity. Everything is in harmony, where it’s supposed to be, all is beautiful and peaceful.
The angel invites us to see a humble truth with our eyes closed: the self-nature is complete and perfect as it is.
The orange triangle within the white square is spirit grounded in matter, the holiness of nature!
The golden disk on the angel’s forehead is the enlightened mind that radiates with clarity and pure, solar, incandescent consciousness, showing the way to a sacred state of awareness that is nonetheless all too natural and human.
The golden crown hovering above the mountains could be a reference to The Emperor, and also to Sahasrara, the crown chakra, from which all other chakras emanate. The crown chakra is the meeting point between the body and the Universe, and our connection to higher guidance.
Moreover, it suggests that the Kingdom of Heaven is here, upon the Earth.
All three Abrahamic religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam) include angels in their doctrines and most religious traditions around the world feature similar heavenly creatures of excellence. They are the archetypes of light, exemplars of benevolence and compassion, in contrast to the Devil’s darkness.
The word angel means ‘messenger’ as in messenger of God, so this card might sometimes refer to a sign from your Higher Self, or actual messages, mail, and correspondence.
Temperance is our holy guardian angel who protects and watches over us. It is of little importance whether one believes in such spirits. This is the stroke of luck that saves us when we are on the brink of destruction, the miraculous convalescence of terminally ill patients.
It is the calm guiding voice from deep within our soul with the advice to be kind, honest, and warm-hearted.
This card constitutes a blessing that should not go to waste. It exhales safety, comfort, and stability. But why are the angel’s eyes closed? Perhaps we human beings could never look an angel of the Lord’s eye to eye, for we would turn to stone by the terrifying beauty of divine grace…
Or is it about faith, about the belief that we are loved and protected without seeking proof, like when we close our eyes and pray? “Blessed are those who have not seen me and yet have believed…”
This in-depth article will explore different interpretations that the Temperance card can offer in a variety of different situations and positions.
Table of Contents
What does the Temperance Tarot card mean?
The Temperance card exudes an energy of calm, serenity, and moderation. It prioritizes a patient temperament or approach to a certain situation. Temperance asks for balance to unify the discordant aspects of your life, resulting in peace on a mental and spiritual level.
Chaos is controlled by a quiet inner assurance.
Part of being able to stay calm, even when the smallest events threaten to throw you off course, is having faith that the outcome will either turn out well or is ultimately beyond your control.
In situations of high stress, such as a period at work where the workload becomes more urgent or significant, or even during exam periods, it’s easy to be frazzled by something as small as a traffic light turning red.
Placing the Temperance card into practice means that one has the ability to protect our mental and physical states from being drained by negative energy. Stress, worry, and anxiety are negative energies after all, and they can all feed off our positive energy to knock even more aspects of our lives off-balance.
The next time that you are faced with this situation, one that you know will overwhelm you with stress, stop and take three deep breaths.
Think about whether you are either dwelling on past events or worrying over future events. Unfortunately, you cannot change either of these at the present moment.
The ability to stay calm, focused, and grounded in the present moment is what spirituality often preaches. It may seem generic, but ultimately dealing with just one small obstacle in the present and moving on will remove an enormous burden off your chest.
Temperance is all about being willing to focus and dedicate yourself one day at a time so that it will pay off in the long term.
The ideology of the Temperance card is that achieving this mindset of tranquillity and patience will align us in the direction of our Higher Selves. We’re not deliberately trying to resist the flow of the universe.
Just like quicksand- we enlarge the problem by struggling against it when we could have been in a better position for assistance if we had remained calm.
Sometimes, the only way to be in control is to let go of such control. You’ll find that your respect for taking a path of acceptance, of a situation or people, and your respect for the process required to reach a goal, will grant you longer-term fulfillment.
The Temperance Tarot Card Keywords Upright
- Inner peace
What does the Temperance Tarot card mean by reversed?
Reversed, the Temperance card indicates a disharmonious inner or outer environment. It can ask you to rein in excess habits. Or, you aren’t going with the flow, and as a result, the universe seems to be flowing against you.
Re-establish that inner peace and balance, one that cannot be disturbed by everyday mishaps.
The quicksand analogy is an appropriate one for ‘going against the flow’ here, once again. One other analogy would refer to a literal river (except this time, the river represents our life).
We could swim against the tide, desperate to avoid toppling over the high waterfall and falling to our deaths. But because we only have a human perspective, maybe we can’t spot the ship coming our way to rescue us, or maybe the treacherous cliff of water turns out to only be a small step waterfall.
The universe will never guide you into a life-or-death situation and then abandon you- there is always a lesson to learn or an unexpected way out. Perhaps the lesson here is to know when you need to take appropriate action when required, but also when to step back.
Reversed, the Temperance card can refer to plans interrupted, or goals crumbling. Have you ever been in a situation where everything seems to be going wrong, and despite wanting to re-center yourself, being caught up in the chaos prevents you from even doing that?
It may be a personal goal that seems to be collapsing. You’ve relapsed again, or you’ve succumbed to your original diet or eating habits. It may be an external environment that is holding you in the energy of the reversed Temperance card.
Whatever it is, Temperance asks you to heal. Heal from your negative cycles, heal from the lesson that the universe has just thrown at you. This is also a great time to ask yourself about your goals.
Are they in alignment with what you truly want? Intuit what feels right, and don’t be afraid to make changes in order to focus on those long-term goals.
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The Temperance Tarot Card Keywords Reversed
The Temperance Tarot Card is How Someone (He/She) Sees You
With the Temperance card, this person perceives you to be someone who seems to always carry a calm exterior. You cannot be fazed, and even in situations of high stress, you keep a level head and self-assurance.
They feel as if your energy is naturally healing, so even your presence can keep them grounded and secure.
The Temperance card represents someone who is emotionally mature. You seem to be able to keep your playfulness balanced with responsibility, and joyfulness balanced with sincerity.
This person perceives you as one who possesses incredible patience. But having a character of patience and serenity doesn’t automatically imply that you let others walk over you.
Being able to have that level of inner peace and patience, in reality, requires an enormous amount of strength. And being able to achieve such grounding and calmness requires a steady vision of long-term benefits and goals.
Therefore, you are being seen as someone who has endless tenacity, coupled with the ability to remain mature and focused regardless of any difficulties.
You’re thoughtful and reliable, and this other person may feel better just being around you. You work well together.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as How Someone (He/She) Sees You
Reversed, the Temperance card indicates that this person perceives you to be quite an impulsive or unpredictable person. You may possess more fiery energy, and although this can be of benefit, it can also easily throw you off course from your goals.
They can see you as one who lacks direction or is easily stressed.
Emotionally fickle, impulsive, and focused on the short-term. These are all keywords that can portray what exactly this person thinks of you. They can perceive you to be someone who lacks self-control or likes to indulge in self-destructive behavior.
With only a focus on the short-term, there can be a lack of mindset of easily giving up in the face of challenges or blockages. They may even find it hard to rely on you for help, due to a lack of dependability or maturity.
And without the harmonious and peaceful nature of upright Temperance, they struggle to work with you effectively. Or, it can even just be that your personalities don’t mesh well together.
However, the Temperance reversal does not necessarily indicate purely negative characteristics. Struggling with grounding your energy, or even grappling with balancing out your lifestyle and temperament does not make you a bad person.
It makes you a person who hopefully is able to acknowledge that they need to take a rest and sort it out.
Similarly, having a passionate personality is not a negative thing. It can make you more emotional, more driven. But as a negative, this person might perceive you to have a volatile emotional or spiritual state.
The Temperance Tarot Card in Love
The Temperance card indicates a long-lasting, harmonious, and stable relationship. In a current relationship, this card brings positive news, as it usually calls for a time of fulfillment and harmony. For a new or future relationship, it also implies an extremely promising and mutually beneficial relationship.
In a relationship, Temperance signifies an emotionally mature and balanced relationship. There are no power plays or immature games. This is a relationship that can be seen as a perfect fit, as you work extremely well together.
Temperance is one of the cards that can sometimes suggest that the person you are with, or will be with soon, is a soulmate. Remember that soulmates do not have to be romantically connected!
If asking about love, then an emotionally fulfilling connection is on the way. Look forward to a wholesome and pleasant time with your loved one.
In any current relationship that has recently suffered from disruptions, disagreements, or arguments, then rest assured that the Temperance cards carry a promise that the future will be positive. Any problems or negativity will be resolved.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed in Love
However, when reversed, the Temperance card does not herald good fortune in terms of relationships.
Reversed, the Temperance card can indicate a time of conflict and imbalance in your relationships. Current relationships may be taking a toll on your mental health. There are disagreements and fights, and you can’t seem to reach a middle ground.
For an incoming relationship, this person may not be a good match for you.
The person you may be asking about is unfortunately not a soulmate. Your relationship may only be on a short-term basis. However, it is still completely up to you whether to enter into this relationship or not.
For a current relationship, a period of disputes and disagreements is about to ensue. This may or may not end up in a complete break-up, but it will be quite a challenging time.
Hopefully, persevering throughout this period will end in an even stronger relationship. Temperance asks you to reach a compromise or to find the middle ground.
Make sure that the people surrounding you are not taking too much of your time or energy away from you, and that they still give back to you, as well as allow you to be alone or recharge.
What does the Temperance Tarot Card mean in Friendship?
For a friendship reading, Temperance means you have friends who love, support and look out for you, whom you can trust to help you heal from trauma or to kindly warn you when you’re out of line. It might also be a sign that you’re about to receive an unexpected message, or that it’s time to text an old friend.
A powerful affirmation for any kind of relationship, the Temperance card reminds you, even if you don’t see it now, that you have friends who will support and stay with you through thick and thin. Appreciate and cherish them. They will answer your calls when you need help and won’t forget you.
The card will perhaps refer to a specific friend. That is your best mate, a kindred spirit! There is trust and balance here. Discussions flow naturally and lead to constructive thinking and subtle realizations that benefit both of you. What you lack they have and vice versa; you complement each other.
Temperance is also about messages, so you might feel like texting a friend you haven’t seen for a while and see if they’re doing ok.
What does Temperance Reversed mean in Friendship?
Unfortunately, Temperance Reversed doesn’t bode well for your social life.
When reversed, Temperance means there is discord and imbalance in your relationships. Perhaps you are incompatible. Communication is hindered, differences spark arguments, and conflicting feelings muddy your perception.
If you can’t work things out with a specific friend, turn to those who make you feel safe and loved.
When there is emotional tension between two people, a few angry words or a sign of disrespect can be the drop that makes the cup overflow. You, or the friend you are thinking about, aren’t practicing restraint on your feelings and behavior towards the other; this has led to bad blood between you.
It could be a misunderstanding or something truly serious causing this. Temperance reversed in this context means a lack of empathy, interest, and compatibility. You just don’t have good chemistry anymore.
You might not be able to mend this relationship. Of course, you could make an effort, but think of the cup metaphor: if the other person doesn’t want to empty their cup, you cannot serve more tea!
That simply means that, if they aren’t willing to meet you on common ground, you better shift your attention to those who would be glad to do so. Don’t waste your energy trying to change things that can only happen naturally.
What Does the Temperance Tarot Card Mean in Conflict?
The Temperance card means there is a good opportunity for reconciliation.
When drawn to specify how to resolve a conflict, Temperance tells you to do the right thing: pacify the situation. It is time to call a truce with your enemies, find the middle ground, and reconcile any and all differences.
You might think this is about forgiveness, to either forgive or ask for it, but Temperance makes a quite different point. There is no blame to assign and forget here. It’s about compromise, about making a genuine effort to end the conflict and wash past squabbles out with kindness.
When there is tension, the other person might misinterpret your words and general demeanor. In turn, you mistake their reaction for hostility, but in truth, they are only responding to a first impression that they perceived as a threat.
So if you start the conversation with a calm temper, you add a pleasant mood to the negative atmosphere and ease communication.
A vibe of enmity between two people can cause much harm. It affects thoughts, emotions, behaviors, and opinions and could last for a whole lifetime. But it is so easy to put an end to it. A gesture of friendship, a message that you are willing to find a solution, is a good start.
All in all, the card’s advice would be to stay calm and grounded without letting the other’s words or deeds affect your feelings.
For your own well-being, let past transgressions slide. It’s all water under the bridge. You don’t have to force a loving behavior, like nothing wrong ever happened, and turn the other cheek; but you shouldn’t let indifference and hate grow in your heart either.
What does Temperance Reversed Mean in Conflict?
Whereas Temperance in the upright position suggests the ground is fertile for reconciliation, the card in reverse tells you that there’s little chance for your message to get across. You’re not seeing your own faults, or perhaps the other side is not ready nor willing to resolve this conflict.
Temperance reversed denotes a passionate disagreement where one or both parties seem to believe they have been wronged and taken advantage of. No one is willing to compromise. Focus on your well-being and don’t expect every person in your life to always show sympathy and understanding.
You can always confront the person who has wronged or misunderstood you, even if it’s just to let them know what you think. This might annoy them, but it’s alright. We can’t please everyone in life. Sometimes we must get our opinion out there without worrying about how it is going to sound.
Even if you have the best intentions, this quarrel is going to need a lot of time to fade away.
After saying what you have to say, refrain from making further contact and realize that the other person is a separate individual with their own problems and viewpoints who possibly cannot deal with this right now because their cup is already full.
Only time will tell if you can solve this dispute once and for all or if you must let it go. Express your feelings, push down the anger, state your case, and agree to disagree.
The Temperance Tarot Card in Career
In regard to career, the Temperance card assures you that you are in a good position, with career goals and aspirations likely to be fulfilled, but not without work, balance, and dedication. When asking for a specific career path, it points towards jobs such as natural healers, therapists, or childcare workers.
This job is going to require the ability to organize and plan, as well as a large amount of patience. Examples could range from managers to special education teachers, to mental health professionals, or even to a job in relation to nature, such as a zoologist or biologist.
But in a general career reading, the Temperance card gives you the affirmation you need when it comes to some sort of work-related passion. It may be a job or a passion that you are set on pursuing.
Temperance says that in being willing to dedicate time and energy towards a goal, as well as being rational and calculated about it, you will definitely acquire the payoff.
However, the Temperance card also asks for balance. A work-life balance can be especially important to you.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed in Career
Reversed, assess the career situation right now. If in a current job, then perhaps hold back on risky investments, big spending, or massive career shifts. Temperance reversed warns you that you are not being as patient as you should be.
When referring to career, the Temperance card in reverse urges you to be responsible with career opportunities. Avoid rushing forward without planning ahead. In reference to a specific career, this card could suggest a stressful and high-risk environment.
In general, a realistic work-life balance is not being attained.
Put the work in day by day, and in time you will see the results. The Temperance card in the reverse wants us to not sacrifice long-term goals for short-term gain.
In contrast, you may have been struggling through the work, and feel that the end goal is no longer achievable. This card thus tells you to not give up your strength and dedication at the last second and make an impulsive change.
Alternatively, workplace chaos or disagreements may be around the corner. You might even be suffering in terms of your work-life balance. Multiple demands may be placed upon you at this time, and as a result, your personal health or home environment may suffer.
Often high-stress work periods are only temporary but watch out and set up boundaries if it drags on for too long.
The Temperance Tarot Card as How Someone Thinks of You
When the Temperance card is drawn to specify another person’s opinion of you, they think that you are sublime, yet modest and grounded. At times you seem otherworldly and ethereal, but you also have a stable anchor in reality.
They trust you, feel safe when next to you, and might even think of you as a role model!
This person holds you in high esteem. They like your vibe and believe that you are an exceptional human being who has found balance and knows what life is all about.
You inspire them to do the right thing, to be a better and kinder person. You remind them that moderation can lead to excellence.
Most of all, they think you have an important message to transmit: the world is always beautiful, the sun rises anew every day, and all we must do to appreciate the gift of life and apprehend its beauty is, well, to get our feet wet!
Temperance Reversed as How Someone Thinks of You
However, when it describes someone’s opinion of you, the reversed Temperance card indicates that you have made an unfavorable impression.
When reversed, Temperance means you are thought of as either too modest and timid or quite unreliable and temperamental. The person you asked the question about doesn’t think you are a good match. A sense of agitation and lack of balance makes them feel uneasy.
You seem unstable and unpredictable, claiming one thing at one moment, then rooting for the exact opposite. They believe that you try too hard to look calm and cool, but you’re easily offended and prone to anger, resulting in an awkward atmosphere.
Perhaps you juggle these personality traits because you have not found your place among the others yet, and as you try to maintain your composure, your insecurities rise to the surface.
Or, if you think that’s not the case, they might be projecting their own insecurities on you. Too often people assign blame and negative traits to others, falsely believing that they themselves are perfect and balanced, failing to recognize that every human being has weaknesses and small defects.
The Temperance Tarot Card as Feelings
Temperance is about feeling comfortable, healthy, and balanced. It is the calm realization that we need not worry because everything will be taken care of. When asking about another person, it means they feel you blend well together, but they try to tone their feelings down and avoid extremes.
Looking at the serene image of the card as a reflection of one’s feelings leaves no doubt: it’s about feeling superb!
When we establish our connection with the environment, we reach the natural state of being. We feel pleased with our place in the world and find motivation to heal. There’s no need to rush, it’s fine to just take our time and find our pace until we feel ready to proceed further.
Even when bad feelings arise, Temperance teaches us to try and add a new value to them: add love to hate, equanimity to anger, and security to stress. With compassion and wisdom, the angelic figure reconciles the opposites.
This could translate to feelings that are neither hot nor cold, with no clinging, and no aversion. If your question was how a specific person feels about you, while they may like you, they’d like to test the waters first. They are cautious and regulate their emotions, so as not to disappoint their initial excitement.
Temperance Reversed as Feelings
In reverse, however, the Temperance card signifies emotional imbalance and spiritual agitation.
Temperance reversed means that you fail to moderate your emotions and your temper. This might fuel insecurities and anxiety, and make it very difficult to deal with any kind of feeling, even positive ones. Regarding another person, it’s a sign that they have mixed feelings and don’t know how to approach you.
Unfortunately, the reversed Temperance card points out a certain degree of emotional immaturity. Remember that one time when you tried talking to your crush only to jumble your words and make a fool of yourself? Your strong feelings betrayed you!
This failure to communicate and handle your emotions can lead to anger, self-pity, and an imbalanced state of mind.
That’s why moderation is needed when addressing passionate emotions, or else you might “fall for your own bait” and create a mood that is awkward at best. It’s those moments that remind us how fragile we are, and how easily our inner world can be turned over.
And if you asked about another’s feelings for you and drew this card in reverse, well, this person might not know exactly how to feel. They are either confused, emotionally unavailable, or you have sent mixed signals to them, and they aren’t sure how to respond.
The Temperance Tarot Card as a Situation
The Temperance card appears to remind you that a situation has begun affecting other areas of your life. Restore that balance to prevent it from impacting your physical and mental health. Alternatively, this card can reassure you that a situation is completely under control and all is working in harmony.
There are two different interpretations of this card. One is that the situation is actually working out well. Everything is operating as planned and the goal will definitely be reached.
The other is that you should assess the situation and see how well it is working with other areas of your life, such as your health. However, this isn’t too big of a deal, as Temperance upright assures you that you’ll be able to establish a good equilibrium.
Even if the situation doesn’t look calm from the outside, try to find the positives. Finding inner peace will enable you to make a huge difference to your exterior with minimum effort.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as a Situation
Reversed, the Temperance card tells of a situation where being too agreeable can end in manipulation, whereas not communicating at all leaves the situation unresolved. There may also be a blockage in maintaining your spiritual health.
The situation may involve groups or projects falling apart and becoming less unified.
Since Temperance upright represents the merging or balancing of different ideas or people, its reversed position can be considered as their splitting apart. There may be a falling out or even arguments that have resulted in the breaking apart of a group of people.
This can be a good or bad thing, taking into consideration the context of the group.
Was it a toxic friendship group, where this offered a good opportunity for everyone to start over?
Or was it a music band, where working in a group is more beneficial than working individually?
Furthermore, Temperance reversal could signify imbalanced relationships or routines. It could even refer to losing contact with your spiritual self, suffering from a spiritual blockage of some sort.
This usually presents itself in the form of toxic energy, such as from a person, a bad habit, or unhealthy obsessions.
The Temperance Tarot Card as Intentions/What Someone Wants
Temperance as intentions is positive. It implies that this person is willing to work with others to figure out a solution. They are not afraid to assert their opinion, nor be too proud or manipulative to work in harmony.
As intentions, the Temperance card shows that their intentions are to compromise or negotiate.
They are willing to dedicate themselves and work hard. They may want to bring different people or things together and is willing to stand as a mediator to find a way through problems or differences to achieve a common goal.
They can be open-minded and cooperative. This card says that nothing is yet set in stone, so it is worth a try to negotiate or talk with them again. They come in good faith and are ready to focus on the next step.
Alternatively, this person could be trying to stabilize all areas of their life. They may want to try to make time for a new project or person in their schedule. They value them and want to work or spend time with them.
Wanting to bring different aspects together or create a group of people is also a possibility for this card.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as Intentions/What Someone Wants
In the reversed position, the Temperance card shows that their intentions may be to deliberately sow misfortune, cause problems, or create disturbances. They do not intend to back down from their standpoint anytime soon.
Whether it is because of a hurt ego, stubbornness, or just purely negative intentions, this person does not want the best for you or another person. They may do it unintentionally, in order to stick with their own opinions, or deliberately.
Their inability to come to an agreement, where all parties are satisfied to a degree, will inevitably create drama or arguments. They may not want to negotiate at all or may want to work individually.
In general, the Temperance card reversed does not signal harmonious intentions, justified or unjustified.
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Is the Temperance Tarot Card a Yes or a No?
Upright, the Temperance card is a definite yes! The elements of fulfillment and harmony, as well as the divine imagery, show that the answer to your question is positive and divinely assisted. However, reversed, the answer might be a no.
It is time to focus on your goal and trust that the right time will come soon.
Temperance is definitely a card of fulfillment. Any problems will be faced with a can-do attitude and a calm approach. It signifies overcoming struggles and reaching a point of perfect equilibrium. Everything will be just right in the future.
But do not become discouraged if you draw the reverse. The divine may be indicating that whatever you’re asking about may not be an appropriate situation for you right now.
Depending on your question, know that all you can do is pull yourself back into balance and try to find a compromise.
Regardless of whether upright or reversed, make sure to gain a suitable level of self-confidence. The situation doesn’t call for impulse decision-making, nor does it ask for being overly cautious
The Temperance Tarot Card as A Place
The Temperance card signifies a place that takes you away from bustling streets or noisy cities. It can be a place of spiritual healing, or just somewhere you can go to recentre yourself. Like the background in the card itself, aspects of nature, such as flowing water and much greenery, can be suggested.
The important thing about this place is that it offers you safety. Temperance is a card of physical, emotional, and spiritual balance, so perhaps it can indicate areas such as places of worship, a therapist’s place, an assigned place for meditation, or even reiki healing practices.
Nature is also a large part of the Temperance card. The balance between our exterior natural environment and our interior home environment can easily become skewed. Reconnecting with nature is also extremely vital for relaxing our bodies and minds and re-aligning ourselves.
This card could be pointing towards a place where trees or grass, and especially flowing water, are near.
There is also almost an other-worldliness to the imagery on the card. The presence of the angel in the midst of this natural environment adds to the mystery. There is no pollution, corruption, or any man-made structures to be seen. For this reason, it could also refer to a place far away from civilization.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as A Place
Whereas the Temperance upright can be affiliated with a natural landscape, the reversed can be associated with the urban landscape instead. The peace and quiet of the previous environment are gone, replaced by a lively and energetic atmosphere.
Reversed, the Temperance card could refer to a place that is quite busy, frantic, or high-paced. A place that is quite urbanized or populated could be a possibility. Temperance reversal can indicate a noisy or high-energy event.
Unlike its upright position, this card can be taken literally, in the sense that it reflects a noisy highway, a crowded city street, or a festival or concert. Generally, the environment could be chaotic or overwhelming, but it could also reflect the general activity of a city or club area at night.
Depending on personal experiences also, the card can refer to a place where you feel the most anxiety or stress, or even where you have to endure the ghosts of past traumas.
The Temperance Tarot Card as an Obstacle or Challenge
Cultivating inner peace can be a challenging thing. Practices such as meditation can assist in doing so, but it remains difficult to properly quiet your mind in the midst of obligations and conflict.
As a challenge, the Temperance card can indicate that you are having trouble attaining peace, whether it be the peace of mind or external peace. You may be hanging onto past worries or present indulgences, and these are preventing you from reaching a healthy equilibrium.
Your natural workflow has been interrupted.
Your mind may be overtaken with anxiety or ‘what-if’ situations. Sometimes, it may be trivial things, such as worrying about whether you brought your keys and at other times crucial events, such as having your career on the line.
Whatever the situation, this has thrown you and your life off-balance. Being so caught up in an energy of stress takes away your creativity and ability to enjoy the quiet moments.
Remember those effortless days, when you were doing something that you enjoyed, and how time seemed to give way to your natural pace or workflow?
It is obviously difficult to maintain perfection all the time but remind yourself that it’s okay to take a break to regain that equilibrium.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as an Obstacle or Challenge
In the reversed position, the Temperance card shows that you may be struggling with focusing on long-term goals and may be feeling stuck or unmotivated.
You are finding it hard to work with other people. There isn’t enough energy to properly juggle all your responsibilities and follow your passions at the same time.
Sometimes we get too caught up with our goals and forget everything else. At the same time, there is such a thing as easily giving up on our goals and forgoing our plans for productivity. The Temperance card shows that you are having trouble reaching your goals in an effective way.
The keyword here is ‘effective’. Focus on responsibilities too much and your creativity and fun and joy escapes you.
Focus on indulgences instead and you might find that you aren’t moving forward in a career or endeavor. When Temperance is reversed, the flow of life is interrupted. Stagnancy takes its place.
The feeling of being stuck is never a great feeling, but we’ve all been there before. Give yourself a chance to rest and reset.
The Temperance Tarot Card as Action
As an action card, Temperance encourages you to work on your well-being. Sidestep any kind of trouble that is not your business. Your priorities should be your health and peace of mind. As the ancient saying goes: “a healthy mind in a healthy body.”
The most common meaning of the Temperance card in the action position is for the querent to organize. It advises you to achieve a healthier and more balanced lifestyle. This is a card that also advises you to take less action. Keep your place, observe, and interfere only when you must.
Clean your house, fix up your schedule, and maybe make more time for activities that you’ve been neglecting. Read an inspiring book and rest generously.
Eat a balanced diet and incorporate exercise into your routine. Be patient and plan out your long-term goals. You will begin to feel much better!
You might say you don’t have enough time or motivation for all that, right? Is it true, though, or just an excuse?
Because if you make some time for yourself by sorting out which habits, routines, and people are fundamentally good for you, and realize that we can’t just wait around for motivation to do all the necessary things in life, you’d be astonished at how much a human being can achieve with ease.
Basically, Temperance tells you that, with proper organizing skills, you achieve more by doing less… This applies to social settings, too. While it should not be considered canon, it’s basically looking out and clearing up space for yourself.
Remember: Temperance teaches moderation in everything. It’s not a sign to disappear from the world, go vegan, and run a marathon. You start with small steps and implement small improvements to your life.
Sometimes, this will require you to step back and abstain from situations that do not serve your interests in the long term and to try new things and activities that you’d never thought of before.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as Action
In reverse, Temperance as an action card brings a simple message: don’t hold back. There are times to be organized and reserved and times to dive in and roll the dice. Express your feelings and don’t be afraid. Let your mind wander off and soar above. You can sort out the mundane details of your life tomorrow.
This invokes the passionate side of the angelic figure: the eager human being.
Being too grounded in one’s energy and only caring about health, order, and progress may lead to a balanced life, but one shouldn’t be overly serious about those matters. Too much restraint is tiresome, if not lame! Moderation can sometimes mean that we have to experience both ends of the spectrum to know what it’s all about.
Stay up late, have some tasty chocolate at the end of a long day, and do something that is out of character for you. You’re more likely to regret the things you didn’t do later on rather than those that you did.
The Temperance card reversed can also advise you to not be afraid to show your passions. Express those fiery emotions, convey them through an art form, and let them out by dancing to music.
If you’ve always felt a lot of intense emotion, but have always repressed it or let it out on yourself, perhaps it’s time to show how you can creatively channel that intensity.
The Temperance Tarot Card as Advice
The Temperance card is all about guidance and emotional restraint. You can resolve your problems by maintaining your composure and listening to what others have to say.
Temperance avoids extremes and prefers the middle way.
Don’t rush to conclusions. Any convictions you might be currently holding to are bound to change. Show patience and kindness, and mellow out!
As an advice card, Temperance advises you to hold back from the immediate judgment of a situation. Step back from an immediate emotional response and really think about the situation. You can seek the help of an understanding mentor or friend.
As opposed to instantly reacting to an event, being alone and dwelling over it can lead you to a different, and much more understanding, conclusion. Sometimes our initial reactions can be exaggerated or overly emotional.
Really ask yourself why you may be upset, why the situation has occurred, and what you can do about it.
Next, the Temperance card asks you to carry out some effective communication. See if you can reach a middle ground with the other person. Understand that the other party has feelings as well as their own reasons for their actions.
You never know if the conversation could result in hearing pieces of information that could adjust your viewpoint.
Consider also talking to a therapist or trusted mentor. The Temperance card can often point towards a trustworthy and reliable person who is able to listen and be there for you.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as Advice
As opposed to its upright position, Temperance reversed asks you to avoid staying neutral in this situation.
In reverse, the Temperance card advises you to show your passions. Now may not be the time for peacekeeping and calm conversations. But similarly to Temperance upright, always act in a balanced manner. Whilst being understanding and passive is not ideal, being rash and offensive is also not optimal.
The Rider-Waite imagery on the card incorporates two cups, between which the angel pours back and forth flowing water.
Funnily enough, if the card is turned upside-down, the water between the cups remains in its flowing state. This equilibrium cannot be disturbed- the calm, balanced, and gentle exchange of energy.
So whilst this card advises you to avoid being a mediator, attempting to always tone down the situation, its meaning reversed also reflects its meaning upright; to stay in control.
Perhaps it would be prudent to think about the card’s equivalent in the first ten Major Arcana: the Emperor. Combining these two energies, you can assert your opinion, without, however, resorting to dominance. Be calm, but also firm and direct in your resolutions.
All things considered, the angel of Temperance is an archetype of benevolence. Still, that should not be taken so literally. Eventually, at some point we are going to lose our patience, our balance will be shaken, and we’ll get angry and be tempted to do the wrong thing. It’s in human nature.
Even if we fall from grace, we can make amends and recover. But first and foremost, we must be honest and kind with ourselves.
The Temperance Tarot Card as an Outcome
Temperance in the outcome position shows that the end result will be favorable. Everything will be restored back into order and peace will once again ensue. The situation has been resolved in a calm manner.
Or if asking about a result of some sort of work or payoff, Temperance assures you that you will be satisfied.
Let’s keep it short and sweet here: the outcome will be positive. Maybe this is something that you’ve hoped for to happen (within reason, of course), or have been worrying about for a long time. Your fears can be wiped away because the Temperance upright suggests that you will be satisfied with the result.
Although it may not seem like it at present, the future holds great peace and harmony. Perhaps you have endured some sort of suffering or loss; the Temperance card suggests that you are on the path to healing your emotional and physical wounds.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as an Outcome
However, in reverse, the future is not so positive. Remember that even if this situation hasn’t given you what you deserve, use both your logic and your intuition to assess it. Is it worth hanging onto, or can you move on to something else?
The Temperance card in reverse as an outcome speaks of conflict. The situation has not been resolved quite yet. Perhaps the end result is one where one or more parties are at a disadvantage, and so a fair balance hasn’t been achieved.
Maybe you are not getting what you truly deserve, and this leaves you disappointed.
The outcome of the situation can be one of disappointment or not achieving something that you had planned. Maybe someone has walked out with less than what they had arrived with, and others have used manipulative techniques to get what they wanted.
These are just examples of what might have occurred, but the overall feeling of regret or dissatisfaction is clear.
The situation will unfortunately not end in a mutual agreement. This card reversed most likely points towards break-ups or an ending on bad terms.
The Temperance Tarot Card in the Future
In the future position, Temperance foretells harmony and health. What you are hoping for will slowly start to manifest and your life will be improved. This won’t be a drastic change, but rather a small step towards something new and beneficial.
Temperance almost always brings good news. It’s a sign that you’re on the right track, making the right choices that will ultimately be helpful. You’ll find relief from stress and grasp the beauty of existence. This might feel like a higher power is watching over you and guiding your every step!
The card announces a combination of new elements into your life. The Universe will respond to your requests, as long as they are humble and realistic. Have patience and work towards your goals. Good things come to those who wait and know to never ask for more than they can handle.
Temperance Reversed in the Future
When reversed, though, Temperance is an omen of disappointing news. Your near future won’t be that terrible but it won’t be great either.
Temperance reversed in the future position sends a straightforward message: lower your expectations, be modest. You won’t find the right path soon. Perhaps what you wish for is not possible or you have overlooked a small yet important detail that is going to cause problems.
Temperance can be interpreted as “pouring some water in your wine” and being ready to compromise for less than what you’ve asked for. The future is not very clear at the moment. Therefore, you should prepare yourself for a slight disappointment.
An imbalance that will throw you off track might occur soon. Maybe you are hoping for something that is just too good to be true, and a lesson on humility is coming along your way.
Don’t lose your cool and be mindful that you can do everything right and still fail. That’s life!
The Temperance Tarot Card as a Person
You may have heard of the term ‘lightworkers’, which is a phrase describing those who have a spiritual purpose of spreading light, as the name suggests. Each person carries their own energy, and it is clear that just the presence of lightworkers can serve to heal and calm.
You may not notice massive shifts, but you may find that your experience being around them has always been a positive one. The Temperance card accurately reflects this type of person.
People represented by the Temperance card are often creative souls. They are natural healers and mentors and can work as teachers or artists. Their presence is always reliable and their advice is always useful. They perform well under stressful situations.
They are in control and can manage both themselves and others.
This is that person whom you can always rely on. They are dependable and are always ready to listen and constructively work on problems. Collected and composed, they manage to enjoy the beauty of life in their own way, without excessively indulging in pleasures or vices.
No one is perfect, but this person is most definitely a great person to have as a friend and should be appreciated.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed as a Person
People represented by the reversed Temperance card are energetic and spirited. They prefer to do things their own way and are quite independent, but can also sometimes struggle under stress or pressure. They have a direct and almost impulsive way of reacting to their emotions.
Temperance upright is usually associated with emotionally mature figures, but in reverse, it does not necessarily mean they are emotionally immature.
It just means that they tend to rely on themselves, whether they’ve been forced to early on or just by their own nature, and tend to express their emotions directly.
Although it is a positive thing to be able to openly show emotions, it can sometimes result in an unfair premature judgment of a situation or lashing out in anger at a person who is undeserving of it.
Intense emotions can sometimes be suppressed or deflected or start to control the person instead. This may result in impulsivity, mood swings, or even anxiety and depression.
However, they can also be constructively channeled into activities such as art, writing, or dance. Granted, this person is not the calmest, but learning to effectively manage impulses or emotions can play greatly in their favor.
What Zodiac Sign is the Temperance Tarot Card?
The zodiac sign that is associated with the Temperance card is Sagittarius. A fire sign of optimism, freedom, and passion, they reflect the dedicated and resilient nature of Temperance. They are both described as ‘philosophers’, each focused on the larger picture and working towards their desires.
We often see the Temperance card as a card that encapsulates an optimal balance between not just all areas of life, but also between the spiritual and physical realms.
It represents an alignment between our physical selves and the Higher Self, which may sound like something that is impossible to always achieve. As a result, the Temperance figure is always striving towards spiritual enlightenment and higher divine truth.
Similarly, the freedom-loving Sagittarius is always ready to explore and travel and build their own truth. They encapsulate dreamy far-away places, philosophy, and also the energy of abundance.
It is interesting that such a blunt fire sign is paired with the calm flowing waters of the Temperance card. It ironically reflects the integration of opposites that the Temperance card seeks to balance.
When drawing the Temperance card in a general reading, it could represent an actual person who is a Sagittarius, but also the overall energy of the sign.
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- What’s the difference between the Major and Minor Arcana?
- How to use the Major Arcana tarot cards
- How to read the Minor Arcana Tarot Cards
Major Arcana Cards Complete Guides
- The Fool
- The Magician
- The High Priestess
- The Empress
- The Emperor
- The Hierophant
- The Lovers
- The Chariot
- The Hermit
- Wheel of Fortune
- The Hanged Man
- The Devil
- The Tower
- The Star
- The Moon
- The Sun
- The World
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