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When the Temperance card comes out in a reading, this is a sign of reassurance. The message is that when you balance the desire for inner peace with a dedication to spiritual or philosophical ideals, you find the serenity to respond to any real-life circumstance without causing or experiencing upset.
Following the inevitable change of the Death card, Temperance says one has learned from experience and knows better than to react to the world with resistance or aggression. You know how you feel, and your higher purpose shines through.
Because of this, Temperance suggests that you can address chaos, danger, and inequity with a demeanor that de-escalates these scenes through the simplicity and calm of your presence.
The Temperance card advises a grounded approach if facing a significant change or a frightening circumstance. You won’t allow this situation to make you react in a way that doesn’t reflect your highest hopes for yourself and others.
The Temperance Tarot Card Keywords and Facts
Before you understand the specific meaning, take a look at the keywords and phrases associated with our 15th Major Arcana Card.
|Moderation, maturity, well-being, blending, balance
|Excess, forgetfulness, childishness
|Yes or No
The Temperance Tarot Card Symbolism and Appearance
An angel with large purple wings represents Temperance, believed to be Archangel Michael, who is traditionally called upon to give one the calm presence of mind to avoid sin and make one a helpful community member. The wings represent the power one seeks to exercise self-control and act constructively and for the benefit of the group.
A few examples of blending appear in the Temperance card. The angel stands with one foot in the water and one on the ground. It indicates keeping part of your attention on emotional and intuitive information while keeping the other piece on what’s happening in the real world.
He carries two cups, pouring water from one into the other. It’s like combining the contents of two perspectives to create something new and valuable. It’s a tricky move; it takes patience, a steady hand, and mindful attention.
On the angel’s chest, one can see a triangle within a square, blending energies of material and earthly existence with those of the spiritual. It points to appreciating your blessings as you work to create stability and equity in your physical environment.
Two flowers called Iris bloom nearby. The ancient deity they are named after was said to move between the material realm and the underworld, embodying both places’ wisdom.
The angel’s head radiates a halo with many points of light. It is marked, also with the astrological symbol for the golden sun. It indicates a dedication to higher, more equitable principles and a positive outlook with visionary clarity or clairvoyance.
The halo’s brightness is echoed by the sun setting over mountains in the distance. A trail from the hills leads to the place the angel stands. It says you’ve come a long way from the trials you had to overcome.
By being consistent, steadfast, and remembering what you’ve learned, you now have the clarity to light your own path.
The Temperance Tarot Card Upright Meaning
When it appears upright, the Temperance card points to a time of serenity and balance in your situation. Moderation is a practice meant to teach patience and tranquility. When you approach life events from a harmonious state of being, your challenges become easy to handle.
Looking back on the changes you’ve been through, it is essential to absorb the lessons they brought. It is partly about how the past and present feel and the current reality of our circumstances.
If you’re up against some challenges in life, the Temperance card reminds you: Be calm. Assess the facts and allow your intuitive gift to help you navigate this obstacle without causing drama and complicating matters.
In a love reading, the Temperance card points to a companion who is careful and considerate from the heart. The guidance is that when you practice patience and dedication, you give love room to grow. A patient and reliable way of being are desirable qualities in a romantic partner.
Whether you seek love or are already involved, you’ll be at your best, navigating from a heart-centered place of calm and compassion. Blending care for yourself with empathy for another helps you engage in a relationship without getting lost or overwhelmed.
May Temperance grant you the clarity of purpose to choose a lover who will be a dedicated companion who treats you as an equal and respects your individuality.
Health and Spirituality (Upright)
In a reading about health, the Temperance card reveals a body’s tendency toward homeostasis. It means maintaining positive well-being through balanced practices that support your mental and physical fitness. Wellness comes from a moderate blend of best practices rather than an all-or-nothing approach.
Temperance in your well-being means not going to extremes. One should neither work too hard nor be idle too long. Don’t starve yourself, and don’t consume more than you need. It doesn’t help to allow paranoia or depression to consume you, and it doesn’t help to pretend they don’t exist.
The key is to find a middle path, where one is not over-joyed or bleak and sad, not going hungry and not over-full, not too busy to enjoy life, and not too busy enjoying life to put some labor in.
In questions of spirituality, the Temperance card can refer to that blessed state of feeling connected and embodied with divine light. A higher power informs your choices, and it may feel like you are a vessel for divine intention to work for peace in the world.
If that kind of transcendent connection is what you seek, the guidance is to practice moderation in all things.
Money and Career (Upright)
When the Temperance card shows up in a spread about your career, you will find success while you employ patience and moderate practices. The idea is to allow yourself to work with your team unhurriedly, allowing progress to unfold.
Pay attention to the way your group operates. No one will thank you for trying to hurry along a project everyone contributes to. Nor will they appreciate it if you don’t do your part on time.
Letting everyone play their part is vital if you want the job done well. The blend of all teammate’s skills creates the best possible outcome for the group.
Financially speaking, the Temperance card says to become financially empowered through diligent saving and wise investments. Slow and steady growth is the ideal. There is no need to hurry. Your eventual success is assured.
The Temperance Tarot Card Reversed Meaning
When the Temperance card shows up in reverse, it means there is some imbalance or discord in your circumstances. Reckless behavior, haste, and excessive tendencies can wreck the peace of your environment. Childishly responding to disappointment only makes matters worse.
You may also notice how difficult your circumstances become if you indulge in reactive tendencies. The guidance is to take a moment, and a few breaths, to recall your commitments and ideals.
For Temperance, extreme circumstances require radical love and acceptance. Calm the reactive heart by feeling your feet on the ground and your commitment to higher principles.
When the Temperance card reversed comes out in a love reading, it says you may go to extremes in your search for love. Feelings of restlessness and impatience may cause you to put too much pressure on yourself or another. These are challenging conditions for connection to bloom.
Love is not a thing to hurry. Rushing into a commitment leaves a lot of room for mistakes and misrepresentations, making a poor foundation for the long-term stability of a partnership.
The Temperance card also points to an all-or-nothing attitude toward partnership. Jealousy, possessiveness, or hyper-vigilance can work against your romance’s ability to thrive.
Suppose you indulge a need to know where your partner is at all times, harassing them when they aren’t constantly in touch or accusing them of disloyalty without evidence. In that case, you will stifle the connection and leave them looking for a way out.
If you are involved with someone who follows you around or distrusts your intentions, the guidance is to step away from this partner. A relationship like this will only prevent you from living in a way that honors your humanity and theirs.
Health and Spirituality (Reversed)
In a health spread, the Temperance card shows up in reverse to remind you that extremes of behavior can damage your health. Neither depriving yourself nor over-indulging will add to balanced mental and physical well-being. The guidance is to begin exercising moderation and self-discipline.
If you feel sick or stagnated and do nothing to resolve it, you can expect more sickness and stagnation.
Accept your current state of being with radical honesty and bring to mind a time when you felt healthy and optimistic. It will help you to see where you can start to get better.
Remember, healing is a gradual process. It won’t help to try to run 10 miles if you haven’t run one mile in 10 years. Forgive your limitations, but push them a little.
Spiritually speaking, the Temperance card in reverse points out that radical beliefs lead to acute circumstances. The same lesson about self-deprivation or excess applies to matters of spiritual connection. Dedication to a divinely lit path needn’t equate to asceticism.
Money and Career (Reversed)
If you see the Temperance card reversed in a career reading, it signals an imbalance between career and the rest of life. You may be under the impression that you must give every moment and effort to your workplace. The truth is, taking time to refresh and enjoy what you’ve earned will ensure your performance on the job is maintained.
The guidance is this: Don’t allow yourself to become overworked because this can lead to reckless decisions, making circumstances at work stressful and unsafe.
Additionally, one goes to work in the interest of being able to pay for a safe and comfortable lifestyle. It won’t matter how big your house is or how soft your bed is if you’re never there to enjoy it.
Family matters may also suffer if one is overly focused on a career. Connecting with your loved ones can help you remember why you love yourself and where your real priorities lie.
Regarding Money, the Temperance card signals that your spending may be out of control. You may be paying for short-term satisfaction at the expense of long-term security. The guidance is to cut down on impulsive purchases and better grasp what your finances can do for you.
The Temperance Tarot Card Yes or No Meaning
In a “yes or no” tarot spread, the Temperance card is a “yes.” More to the point, it says, “Proceed with moderation.” Remember your values and be realistic about what you can do so that you can feel good about the choices you’re making now.
Important Card Combinations for the Temperance Tarot Card
Temperance and the Chariot
Jupiter rules the Temperance card. It is our planet for good fortune and experiences that expand our idea of what we can be, do, and have. Coupled with the Chariot, this pairing refers to a long-distance holiday, perhaps even a move overseas.
When you receive the call to adventure, remember to balance your enthusiasm with practical concerns like the cost of travel and the safest place to stay.
Temperance and the Eight of Swords
When the Temperance card turns up with the Eight of Swords in a general spread, it points to the possibility of communicating in another language. Learning a new language will expand by a large degree the number of people you can connect with.
Your attempts to erase a language barrier will be appreciated by those who don’t speak your native language well. It is what we call “meeting them halfway.”
Temperance and the Ten of Cups
The Ten of Cups is a moment of reward. It is the ultimate expression of interpersonal support and security. In a love reading, it appears with the Temperance card to indicate a happy family surrounds one.
The sense of love and tranquility is overflowing. Whether this is your blood family or a group of your closest friends, the Temperance Card and the Ten of Cups want you to recognize the people around you as your spiritual kin.
Your connection to these people gives you great peace of mind, clarity of intention, and a calm disposition that says, “There is nothing more I need.”
Temperance and the Lovers
In a love reading, the Temperance card and the Lovers come together to say that you will find healing in a relationship where both people seek balance. A shared set of values and a realistic approach to life create a stable foundation from which you can build.
If you seek love or are newly involved in a relationship, understand that it is essential to entertain potential partners with similar spiritual or philosophical principles to yours. It also helps to have similar habits and approaches to living in the world.
Temperance and the Ace of Swords
In a reading about spirituality or mental health, the Temperance Card combines with the Ace of Swords to say, “Speak the truth.” Honesty requires a blend of facts and personal perspective.
Only you can say what’s true for you, but your perspective will only find much support if you include facts. Likewise, if you lean entirely on facts without a point of view, it will be hard for others to connect with your meaning.
When you share facts and your ideas, you create the grounds by which everyone involved can create a shared philosophy.
Temperance and the Four of Cups
The time for reflection has come when you see the Temperance card and the Four of Cups in a wellness or spirituality reading. You are to reflect on how far you’ve come and consider what it is to be grateful for now.
The Four of Cups is often seen as a moment of dissatisfaction or overwhelm, and Temperance aims to find the middle ground between two extremes. When you take time alone to contemplate these feelings, you may find that your experiences have indeed satisfied some need or that your overwhelm resolves into gratitude and fulfillment.
Temperance and the King of Cups
In a job spread, the Temperance Card paired with the King of Cups represents a possible career in diplomacy. A diplomat mediates the dialogue between leaders of different countries, helping them navigate their differing viewpoints and needs to equitable and peaceful conclusions.
The King of Cups is intuitive and rational, and Temperance seeks to blend those qualities for fair outcomes. You may have a skill for diplomacy, and this pairing says you can make a career of it.
Temperance and the Three of Wands
The Temperance card and the Three of Wands can show up in a money reading to indicate good financial gains can build when dealing in imports or exports. It’s a complex business where one must balance many plates to get an equitable outcome.
However, there is a lot of money to make in that business. If you can keep a calm disposition while anticipating obstacles and taking advantage of opportunities, you can do well.
The Temperance Tarot Card in Numerology
Though it is the 15th card of the Major Arcana, the Temperance card’s number is 14. The number 14 indicates a need to find balance in one’s life. Whether life is overwhelming or at a complete standstill, you can do something to mitigate the extremes of your experience.
It’s time to take action. You have the power to improve your circumstances for the better. Make choices that align with your best ideas about yourself, and work from there.
Next Card: Tarot Card Number 15: The Devil Meanings
Rider-Waite images used with permission of U.S. Games Systems, Inc., Stamford, CT c. 1971 by U.S. Games Systems.