Six Of Pentacles



having/not having resources giving/receiving taking care of/being taken care of sponsoring/being sponsored supporting/being supported offering/receiving a gift or reward acquiring/not acquiring what you need having/not having knowledge teaching/learning imparting/receiving information becoming/finding a mentor offering/taking advice showing/being shown the ropes knowing/not knowing a secret having/not having power leading/following dominating/submitting acting with authority/deference asserting/denying your wishes coercing/being coerced doing all the talking/listening


Opposing and reinforcing cards do not work in the usual way with the Six of Pentacles because this card can mean either (or both) sides of the same issue - having or not having. The other cards in a reading can help you figure out which side applies for the moment in your case. The following cards also deal with this issue:

• Empress - abundance, physical comfort

• World - affluence, material fulfillment

• Ten Wands - struggling to make ends meet, hard times

• Five Pentacles - lack, not having

• Seven Pentacles - material reward, having

• Ten Pentacles - affluence, having


The Six of Pentacles is a difficult card to describe because it falls in the shadowy area between the lack of the Five of Pentacles and the affluence of the Ten of Pentacles. These two cards represent the extremes of not having and having. The Six of Pentacles covers the huge middle ground where it is not clear exactly who has what.

On this card, a well-to-do gentleman is tossing a few coins to a beggar while another supplicant waits to the side. The giver holds the scales of justice as if claiming the right to decide who deserves blessings and who does not. In this picture we see both sides: what it means to give and to receive, to dominate and to submit, to be on top and to be on the bottom. It seems clear who has and who hasn't, but is it? Life is not that simple, and how quickly fortunes change.

In readings, the Six of Pentacles asks you to look very deeply into the whole issue of what having really means both materially (resources) and immaterially (knowledge, power, love). You may see yourself on one side or the other, but this card asks you to reconsider. Think of the successful businessman who suddenly declares bankruptcy. The tyrannical invalid who dominates through weakness. The teacher who learns from her students. The parent who controls by giving money.

The keywords for the Six of Pentacles include both the have and have not sides of each meaning. Sometimes this card is a clear sign one way or the other. You will get the gift you want. You will have to defer to another. In all cases, though, you should question the obvious and go deeper. Why are you in the situation you're in, and where is it leading? Who is really in charge? What's really going on?

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The Illustrated Key To The Tarot

The Illustrated Key To The Tarot

The pathology of the poet says that the undevout astronomer is mad the pathology of the very plain man says that the genius is mad and between these extremes, which stand for ten thousand analogous excesses, the sovereign reason takes the part of a moderator and does what it can. I do not think that there is a pathology of the occult dedications, but about their extravagances no one can question, and it is not less difficult than thankless to act as a moderator regarding them.

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