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When it comes to the world of divination the two most popular forms are astrology and the tarot, but did you know that the tarot has western astrology intricately linked within its symbolism and archetypes? In fact, the four suits have an element associated with each of them, much like star signs: cups for water, wands for fire, swords for air, and pentacles for earth. The major arcana not only has planetary associations, but there is also a special card for each sign in the Zodiac. Now I know what you are thinking, “How can I use my knowledge of astrology in my tarot readings?” Well, your knowledge of the stars may be more useful in a Tarot card reading than you think!
The Tarot and Astrology
When giving or receiving a reading, Zodiac tarot card correspondences can be useful in lots of ways; cards associated with certain constellations and planets may help answer questions about timing. Also, if the major arcana card associated with your astrological sign shows up it may mean that you need to pay close attention! Star correspondence can also be useful when looking into other people who may be entering our lives. For example, if you are asking about a new love interest coming your way, these cards could tell you which astrological sign they were born under, which is another way to evaluate potential compatibility.
The best way to get started is to learn which tarot cards correspond with the 12 signs of the Zodiac. Astrological signs are archetypes of personality the same way the tarot is made-up of story archetypes. By learning these first 12 associations you can begin to have a deeper understanding of the major arcana and its close connection with the Zodiac.
Aries Tarot Card: The Emperor
Aries, the first sign of the Zodiac is represented by the Emperor, the king of the deck. This is really no surprise considering his throne is adorned with Rams heads, and the ram is the symbol for Aries. The Emperor's right hand holds the Egyptian symbol for life, the ankh, and his left the symbol for power, the orb. Much like fiery Aries, the Emperor's energy is all about taking charge and leading by example.
Ruled by the planet Mars, the star sign Aries and the Emperor can both have short tempers and be too proud to admit that they've sometimes made mistakes. The Emperor is a symbol for power and structure, two things that come naturally to an Aries.
Taurus Tarot Card: The Hierophant
The Hierophant, also known as the Pope in some decks, represents Taurus, the second sign of the Zodiac. The staff in the figures left hand represents understanding of matter, thought, and emotion. The card's number five is cosmically linked to the planet Venus, the ruling planet for Taurus.
Much like the Hierophant, Taurus is known for having a defined system of values and ethics. However, Taurus can be stubborn or immovable when those values and thoughts are challenged. The figure sitting on the card represents a loyal person who gives good advice, something that we can all say is true for a Taurus.
Gemini Tarot Card: The Lovers
Our next Zodiac sign on the wheel of the year is represented by the Lovers, a card depicting not only companionship but also the dual nature of a Gemini. Gemini is ruled by Mercury, the planet of communication, making them one of the more social signs of the astrological chart. The image on the card shows Adam and Eve; one looking forward representing a view of the physical, the other is looking upward representing a view of the intuitive.
The classic imagery of the Lovers card shows our pairing in front of the tree of knowledge, just as every Gemini knows there's more than one way to solve a problem. This card is all about balancing the energies of life, something that Gemini understand deeply.
Cancer Tarot Card: The Chariot
Cancer, our fourth astrological sign is represented by the Chariot; much like the armored crab, the Chariot pictures a warrior returning home from conflict triumphant in his victory. The imagery on the card shows the chariot being pulled by two sphinxes, one white and one black; this represents Cancer's ability to exist in both the material and spiritual realms.
Ruled by the Moon, Cancer is a deep feeling and naturally intuitive sign. And just like the river depicted in the background of the card, Cancer can go with the flow. But watch out, this moon child is no pushover! This warrior will do whatever it takes to protect itself emotionally, as well as the ones they care for most.
Leo Tarot Card: Strength
Fiery Leo is represented in the tarot by the Strength card. While this card depicts a lion, the imagery is more about the female figure holding the jaws of the creature open. A maiden with the strength to hold open the jaws of a lion sums up Leo to perfection! Passionate, loyal, and strong; Leo is ruled by the sun and just as impossible to ignore.
The maiden on the card is crowned with an Infinity symbol, representing endless possibilities; and Leo is always looking for a chance to reinvent themselves. This card is all about trusting your own strength and patience, as well as having confidence in your abilities. Just like their solar influence, Leo always finds the confidence to shine through.
Virgo Tarot Card: The Hermit
Our sixth sign of the Zodiac is represented by the Hermit tarot card; the Hermit is all about wisdom found in solitude, and Virgo is naturally comfortable with solo energy. The image on the card features an older figure using a Lantern to light their way, this Lantern is a metaphor for seeking out truth and knowledge. Just like the figure on the card, this industrious earth sign is willing to spend however long it takes to master the skills they think are most important.
Virgo is also ruled by Mercury, but instead of being focused on communication with others Virgo's energy is more about communication with the self. Information obtained through insight and self-journey, this perfectly sums up both the Hermit and Virgo.
Libra Tarot Card: Justice
The next sign of the Zodiac is represented by scales; these scales are visible in its corresponding tarot card, Justice. The scales of Justice represent fairness, equality, and balance, three things sacred to a Libra. Ruled by the planet Venus, the planet of money, love, and beauty, Libras enjoy both artistic and intellectual pursuits. However, in times of stress a Libra can balance the scales between what they want and what they need.
The figure depicted on the Justice card sits in a place of authority and holds us accountable, it reminds us to do what's fair and what's right. This is what a Libra does best, bringing harmonious balance to a chaotic world.
Scorpio Tarot Card: Death
Scorpio, our next Zodiac sign is just as misunderstood as the tarot card that represents it. While the figure of Death atop his horse can be frightening to see, the Death card represents transformation and rebirth. The same way our misunderstood scorpion sheds their skin, this water sign is an expert at embracing change.
Scorpio is ruled by Pluto, the planet of destruction and transformation. Scorpio knows all too well that sometimes you must break something to build it better, this is the foundational energy of the Death card. Scorpios understand that this energy is not something to be feared but something to be rushed toward head on.
Sagittarius Tarot Card: Temperance
The final fire sign of the Zodiac, Sagittarius, is represented by Temperance. The Angel shown on the card is tempering water by moving it from one golden chalice to the other, with one foot in the water and one foot on the land existing in both worlds at the same time. This is the energy of a Sagittarius – everything everywhere all at once.
This sign is ruled by Jupiter, the planet of abundance; so naturally Sagittarius wants to have it all. However, much like the Angel on the card, Sagittarius can be a gifted mediator putting judgments aside and finding common ground.
Capricorn Tarot Card: The Devil
The final earth sign of the Zodiac, Capricorn, is represented by another dread inducing tarot card, the Devil. The Devil card warns us about relationships or situations that have grown toxic or manipulative, but the image of the Lovers bound in chains has more to do with Capricorns strict energy.
Capricorn is ruled by the planet Saturn; the planet associated with tasks, responsibilities, rules, and timing. Capricorns are associated with earthly success and ambition, and the Devil serves as a warning for when those ambitions go too far.
Aquarius Tarot Card: The Star
It should come as no surprise that Aquarius is represented by the Star, considering the Aquarius constellation is known as the water bearer and the Star depicts exactly that. The woman kneels by the stream and the card represents new beginnings and hope in a reading. This is fitting when you know that Aquarius is known as the humanitarian of the Zodiac.
Ruled by the planet Uranus, the governing planet of innovation and technology, Aquarians use innovative thought for the greater good. The astrological sign Aquarius is all about finding hope, this is reflected perfectly in the Star.
Pisces Tarot Card: The Moon
The final astrological sign is Pisces, represented in the tarot by the Moon. The Moon embodies the subconscious and unknown parts of your mind, the dog and the wolf represent both the tamed and untamed parts of yourself.
Pisces is ruled by Neptune, the planet that controls dreams, illusion, escapism, and creativity; where some may stray away from the unknown, Pisces dives in headfirst. Neptunian energy is much like the water shown in the card - magical, mysterious, and unknowable.
Now that you know the tarot card associated with your astrological sign, you can pay attention when it shows up in a reading for love, career, or destiny. The cards may be telling you to pay close attention to a situation; or if it has appeared in reverse, it can tell you to look to the more shadowy aspects of your personality. Either way this knowledge will help you become even more acquainted with the tarot!
Rosey is a long-time professional psychic and Metaphysical Scholar at the University of Metaphysical Sciences. She is an authority on the Tarot and a collector of rare and out-of-print volumes on the Occult. As a developing Medium, she is a seeker of truth and hidden knowledge, and one of the last true spiritualists.