Whether you’re new to tarot or have been reading for a while, here’s some tarot interpretations and meanings for the High Priestess card.
In this post, we’ll look at:
- Keyword & Phrases Meanings of the High Priestess – Upright
- Keyword & Phrases Meanings of the High Priestess – Reversed
Let’s begin with the symbolism and interpretation of the High Priestess card.
Interpretation of The High Priestess Card
In the tarot’s major arcana, the High Priestess is numbered as 2.
The High Priestess is one of the most loved cards of the tarot, commonly chosen as selected by diviners, psychics, mediums and anyone interested in mysticism and the occult.
What the High Priestess teaches can’t be learned in books and texts.
We can read occult texts and study them, but mysticism and the occult have to be experienced.
A guide or teacher can explain what’s written, but the student must do the work himself or herself in order to experience the full meaning of the written work.
The High Priestess shows us the gate, but we must walk through it.
It’s believed that behind the curtain shown in the Rider Waite Smith (RWS) version of the High Priestess is a lake or pool of water, the same that’s depicted on the Moon card.
The connection between the Moon card and the High Priestess is apparent, as the High Priestess is associated astrologically with the moon and the Moon card is associated with Pisces which is ruled by the moon.
(Not to forget that Cancer is also ruled by the Moon.)
Anyone that studies the occult, witchcraft, psychic abilities, mediumship or metaphysics can attest that no matter how many texts, blogs or books that you read, the understanding and experience is missed unless you put it into practice.
The High Priestess is a card of stillness, that still waters run deep.
In most readings such as career, love and future outcomes, the High Priestess suggests there’s more work to be done on the self, that something’s hidden and not ready to be revealed.
She suggests that your unconscious self has something to reveal or that you may be suppressing something within your unconscious self.
While the Hermit may suggest solitude, retreating or seeking a guide or mentor, the High Priestess suggest doing the same but going deeper into unconscious.
She hints at meeting with spirit guides, spirits, deceased loved ones, conversing with your higher self and digging deeper into the depths of your mind and spirit.
We see that the Magician is about moving energy and manipulating what’s around you to take action, however the High Priestess suggests doing the same but directing this energy inward.
For the most part, the secrets of the High Priestess aren’t easily revealed to everyone and are only revealed when the timing is right.
It’s a process that can’t be rushed, just like magick and intuition can’t be rushed and flow better when at ease and trust in the process of divine timing.
Next we’ll look at Moon’s connection with the High Priestess.
Astrology and The High Priestess Card
All the major and minor arcana cards are associated with the planets and signs.
The High Priestess is associated with the Moon which is the planet of emotions and intuition.
The Moon reflects the light and energy of the Sun, one half of her is always in darkness while the other half receives light.
The Moon goes through phases each month and the High Priestess can also go through these phases as well.
The meaning of the High Priestess can change and fluctuate depending on the reading (just like any card).
Even with the High Priestess as a stalker card (a card that appears repeatedly in readings frequently), her meanings can shift and bend depending on yourself and circumstances.
The Moon is connected with feelings, motherhood, women, the unknown, the hidden, mysteries, secrets, emotions and what we need to feel nurtured and emotionally secure.
When we look at an astrological chart, the 4th and 12th houses are ruled by the Moon (Cancer and Pisces respectively.)
As a quick summary, the 4th house (ruled by Cancer & the Moon) represents our home, motherhood (some astrologers attribute motherhood to the fourth house or parent/guardian that provided the most care/nurturing) and roots.
(For more about the 4th house, check out the Dark Pixie Astrology.)
The 12th house (ruled by Pisces & the Moon) represents what’s hidden, secrets, the proverbial “closet” of the astrological houses.
(For more about the 12th house, check out also the Dark Pixie Astrology.)
When we look at these houses and signs, we can see where the High Priestess fits in there as a combination of the two.
Although, the High Priestess is associated with the Moon, we need to keep in mind that the Moon rules both Cancer and Pisces, but in Tarot the Chariot is associated with Cancer and the Moon is associated with Pisces.
Yet, all these cards are interconnected.
If you have a reading that has all three (the High Priestess, the Chariot and the Moon), you can look to see if there’s a strong moon influence or connection symbolically or astrologically.
Numerology and The High Priestess Card
The High Priestess card is numbered 2 which is often seen as duality and the divine feminine.
The number 2 is seen as diplomacy, relationships, partnerships, compansionship and unity.
Two is about coexistence and dependency (for good and bad) and can mean teamwork and friendships.
In the Rider Waite Smith (RWS) version of the High Priestess, we see two pillars (one black and one white) representing the duality and also opposites, yet together are unified by the High Priestess in the middle.
When it comes to the High Priestess, it’s not so much about partnerships outside ourselves (that’s seen in the Lovers card), but rather partnerships, coexistence and duality within ourselves.
To recognize this duality within ourselves is to access parts of our unconscious selves that’s often hidden away as daily life draws our attention away from what’s hidden in the shadows and esoteric.
Keyword & Phrases Meanings of the High Priestess Card – Upright
- Hidden knowledge
- Unconsciousness / unconscious self
- Occult / esoteric wisdom or knowledge
- Hidden agenda or motivation
- Intuition / feminine instinct
- Psychic abilities / mediumship
- Meditate / meditation practice
- Women’s spirituality
- Women’s health / hormones / menstrual cycle
- Feminine sacred sexuality
- Female connections, partnerships, sisterhood
- Seeking deeper spiritual meaning or purpose
- Go within and seek answers from your higher self / spirit guides / loved ones in spirit
- Something not yet to be known (time isn’t right to reveal)
- Divination (in all forms)
- Witchcraft / coven(s)
- What you seek to know / the answers you seek can only be found within yourself
- An experience that can’t be described in words / can only be felt
- Privacy / desire for privacy
- Retreat / sanctuary
- Modesty / restriction (sometimes based on spiritual practices, traditions or beliefs)
- Work needs to be done from within before results can be seen
- Esoteric or occult learning or study
Keywords & Phrases Meanings of the High Priestess – Reversed
- Something revealed / known
- A secret revealed
- A secret denied or refused (someone won’t tell you something, but you have an intuitive feeling about it)
- Something soon to be known (timing is almost ready)
- Skeletons out of the closet
- Further pushed into the closet to hide out of fear, etc.
- Lack of privacy / desire for privacy but not granted
- Intuition or psychic abilities ignored or blocked (unable to connect or receive)
- Issues with women’s health / hormones / menstrual cycle
- Issues with feminine sexuality or identity of self
- Difficulty with women’s spirituality or a need for feminine spirituality
- Disconnected from female connections, partnerships, sisterhood
- Hidden agenda or intentions revealed or refuted/denied if exposed
- Something exposed for what it really is (looking behind the curtain)
- Denial of spirituality or unable to connect spiritually
- Difficulty or refusal to go within to find the answers or to do the spiritual self-work needed
- A need to establish a spiritual practice, meditation practice, etc.
- Difficulty accessing or understanding esoteric / occult wisdom or knowledge
- Feeling disconnected from your unconscious self, spirit guides, loved ones in spirit
- Unable to decipher divination messages, dreams, intuitive/psychic feelings or messages
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Stacey & the Tarot Pugs
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