Tarot Card Meanings

The High Priestess

Put self-cultivation at the top of your daily priority list.
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General Meaning

The High Priestess is a Major Arcana, or "trump" card, that represents human wisdom. The High Priestess can be viewed as a kind of female Pope (a Papess), or the ancient Egyptian Priestess of Isis, the even more ancient snake and bird goddesses, the Greek goddess Persephone, or Eve, before the fall.

For the accused heretics who were burnt at the stake for revering her in the 14th and 15th century, the Priestess symbolized the prophecy of the return of the Holy Spirit, which was perceived as the female aspect of the Holy Trinity.

In terms of the Major Arcana ordering of cards, The High Priestess appears in the sequence as soon as the Fool decides he wants to develop his innate powers, making a move toward becoming a Magician. The High Priestess is his first teacher, representing the inner life and the method for contacting it, as well as the contemplative study of nature and spiritual mystery.

In the Reversed Position

The High Priestess card reversed suggests that when you have problems, it's usually because you are so attracted to your inner life that it has become an addiction in itself. It blots out your interest in ordinary reality, friends, and family -- the connections that hold us fast to our worldly identities.

Don't take this card as permission to abandon the world. This is a reminder to balance your outer identifications with internal cultivation, so you can more effectively bring the spiritual world to the material world.

In the Advice Positon

The High Priestess advises you to adhere to your chosen spiritual practice on a more regular basis. If you want the benefits of evolution, you'll have to cooperate with spirit. We all have distractions, demands -- a whole life full of reasons why we cannot find the time to retreat into our inner sanctum.

Until you consider this as vital to your well-being as the need to eat and sleep, you are likely to be eternally restless and deeply dissatisfied. A spiritual routine that suits your temperament, practiced every day, is the most trustworthy path to freedom.

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The High Priestess card in all decks.

8-Bit Tarot
8-Bit Tarot
African Tarot
African Tarot
Angel Tarot
Angel Tarot
Aquarian
Aquarian
Archeon
Archeon
Art Nouveau
Art Nouveau
Art of Life
Art of Life
Cagliostro
Cagliostro
Cary-Yale Visconti Tarocchi
Cary-Yale Visconti Tarocchi
Cat People
Cat People
Cat's Eye
Cat's Eye
Celestial
Celestial
Chinese
Chinese
Chrysalis
Chrysalis
Classic
Classic
Connolly
Connolly
Cosmic
Cosmic
Crow's Magick
Crow's Magick
Crystal Visions
Crystal Visions
Dark Exact
Dark Exact
Deviant Moon
Deviant Moon
Dragon
Dragon
Dreaming Way
Dreaming Way
English Magic Tarot
English Magic Tarot
Epicurean Tarot Recipe Cards
Epicurean Tarot Recipe Cards
Esoterico
Esoterico
Etteilla
Etteilla
Faerie Tarot
Faerie Tarot
Fantastical Creatures
Fantastical Creatures
Fantastical Tarot
Fantastical Tarot
Fenestra
Fenestra
Feng Shui
Feng Shui
Forest Folklore
Forest Folklore
Fradella
Fradella
Gendron
Gendron
Ghosts & Spirits
Ghosts & Spirits
Gill
Gill
Goddess
Goddess
Golden Thread Tarot
Golden Thread Tarot
Gummy Bear
Gummy Bear
Haindl
Haindl
Halloween
Halloween
Hanson Roberts
Hanson Roberts
Herbal
Herbal
Hermetic
Hermetic
Ibis
Ibis
Japaridze
Japaridze
Jolanda
Jolanda
Karma
Karma
Lovers Path
Lovers Path
Magic Manga
Magic Manga
Marseilles
Marseilles
Medicine Woman
Medicine Woman
Medieval Cat
Medieval Cat
Medieval Scapini
Medieval Scapini
Merry Day
Merry Day
Modern Medieval
Modern Medieval
Morgan-Greer
Morgan-Greer
Motherpeace Tarot
Motherpeace Tarot
Mystic Mondays
Mystic Mondays
Napo Tarot
Napo Tarot
New Century
New Century
Old English
Old English
Old Path
Old Path
Omegaland
Omegaland
One World Tarot
One World Tarot
Oswald Wirth
Oswald Wirth
Paulina
Paulina
Phantasmagoric
Phantas-
magoric
Quick and Easy
Quick and Easy
Renaissance
Renaissance
Rider Waite
Rider Waite
Royal Thai
Royal Thai
Russian
Russian
Sacred Art
Sacred Art
Sacred Rose
Sacred Rose
Salvador Dali
Salvador Dali
Santa Fe
Santa Fe
Smith Waite Centennial
Smith Waite Centennial
Spiral
Spiral
Stairs
Stairs
Stars Tarot
Stars Tarot
Starter
Starter
Sun and Moon
Sun and Moon
Swiss (1JJ)
Swiss (1JJ)
Tapestry
Tapestry
Tarot of a Moon Garden
Tarot of a Moon Garden
Tarot of Dreams
Tarot of Dreams
Tarot of the Spirit
Tarot of the Spirit
Tarot of the Witches
Tarot of the Witches
The New Palladini Tarot
The New Palladini Tarot
Ukiyoe
Ukiyoe
Universal Waite
Universal Waite
Vampire Tarot
Vampire Tarot
Vanessa
Vanessa
Visconti-Sforza
Visconti-Sforza
Whimsical
Whimsical
Winged Spirit Tarot
Winged Spirit Tarot
Zerner Farber Tarot
Zerner Farber Tarot

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MAJOR ARCANA
The Fool The Magician The High Priestess The Empress The Emperor The Hierophant The Lovers The Chariot Strength The Hermit Wheel of Fortune Karma The Hanged Man Death Temperance The Devil The Tower The Star The Moon The Sun Judgement The World
WANDS
Ace of Fire
Two of Fire
Three of Fire
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Sister of Fire
Brother of Fire
Mother of Fire
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Three of Water
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Six of Water
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Ten of Water
Sister of Water
Brother of Water
Mother of Water
Father of Water
SWORDS
Ace of Wind
Two of Wind
Three of Wind
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Five of Wind
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Seven of Wind
Eight of Wind
Nine of Wind
Ten of Wind
Sister of Wind
Brother of Wind
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Father of Wind
COINS
Ace of Earth
Two of Earth
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Six of Earth
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Ten of Earth
Sister of Earth
Brother of Earth
Mother of Earth
Father of Earth