Suit of Pentacles
The Suit of Pentacles (here drawn as coins) is associated with earth, and covers the material aspects of life. Pentacle cards tend to deal with career, money, and our material possessions. Pentacles are about our bodies, the solid world, and all the joy and hard work that comes with physicality. I think of the Suit of Pentacles as the results brought about by the actions of the other suits. In other words, emotion (cups), thought and action (swords), and spirit (wands) bring about the events and physical manifestations of reality (pentacles). Of course, pentacles are not solely an end result, as everything is part of a connected cycle, and our real life circumstances affect all other aspects of our lives as well.
Get That Garden
Like all Aces, the Ace of Pentacles represents an opportunity. The Suit of Pentacles is about corporeal things, the real stuff that results from all the thinking, feeling and dreaming that we do in the other suits. The Suit of Pentacles is grounded in reality; thus the opportunity of the Ace of Pentacles represents is a tangible one.
This is a card for new jobs, new homes, money coming your way, or a new relationship with your body. It is not a promise that any of these things will work out perfectly for you, but it is an open door. Beneath the god-like hand offering you the shining golden pentacle is a verdant gate. Past the gate is a beautiful garden, lush with fruit and opportunity. Will you go inside? What seeds will you plant there?
In readings, the Ace of Pentacles encourages you to nourish whatever opportunity is being presented to you. If none seem to be coming your way, seek them out. Apply for that job, plant a garden, get a gym membership, or start selling your handmade jewelry on the Internet. Sometimes we have to make our own opportunities.
You’re juggling a lot right now, aren’t you? You’ve got multiple balls in the air, but you haven’t dropped them yet. The Two of Pentacles suggests that there’s more than enough going on in your life, but you are keeping it together, and maybe even enjoying the multi-tasking rush of it all.
The key here is balance. I drew myself into this card because I feel like I’m always juggling about a million projects in addition to my social life, relationships, errands, chores, and keeping my cat fat and happy. You absolutely need to balance these disparate elements or else the pentacles will fall to the ground and your juggling act will fall apart.
Even if you are struggling to keep it all together, the Two of Pentacles suggests that you’ve got this. This is a time to be adaptable, and handle your many challenges with grace and efficiency. If you don’t feel able to enjoy your current work/life balance, perhaps it’s time to reorganize. What metaphorical pentacles do you need to drop? Which ones could be thrown differently? Whatever it takes to restore balance to your life, do it.
Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Threes are about how we relate to others, and in the Suit of Pentacles, this generally means work or some other kind of group project. In the Rider-Waite-Smith deck, an apprentice shows his work on a cathedral to a couple of monks or architects. In this deck, three craftswomen work together to complete a sculpture. They are all on the same team, working together to make the best piece of art they can.
The Three of Pentacles beseeches you to welcome teamwork, collaboration, and cooperation. Combining forces with others whose skills complement yours will create a result that is greater than its parts. If you work on a team, embrace it. If you work alone, reach out for feedback.
Pentacles are not overly interested in your feelings, but this card does suggest that you are (or could be) happy and content with your work and the people you are working with. If you are not feeling this at your work right now, it is a reminder that a positive collaborative environment is something you can build.
This is a card about your relationship to your possessions, time, and money. This man has his pentacles, and no one’s taking them from him, no way, no how. A beautiful city beckons him from the background, but he is too dedicated to his earthly things to move.
It’s good to be prudent with resources, but are you hoarding at your own expense? Does your attachment to your earthly goods prevent you from engaging in the experiences that make life great? It’s time to ask yourself why you are being so tightfisted. Maybe you’ve always been privileged, or maybe you know what scarcity feels like and you are terrified to go back. The only people who say money doesn’t matter are people who’ve always had it, right?
Regardless of the reason, this dynamic is holding you back. Your money and your things are meant to serve you, not hold you down. The Four of Pentacles may be a suggestion to loosen your hold and enjoy your life. If you are capable, use your resources to help others enjoy their lives as well.
The Dying Alone in the Cold Card
I think of this card as a choice. Two figures, down on their luck, struggle through harsh weather. If they continue in this state, it is likely their condition will worsen; they might even die of exposure. Behind them, a church window glows with warmth and light. The church is a place where they could stop, seek out relief, and make it through the night. Will they notice this place of respite, or are they too stuck in their pain to see it? If they do, will they be willing to accept the hospitality?
The Five of Pentacles asks you to acknowledge that you have come upon hard times. It strongly suggests that help is available to you. There are no trophies for misery. Are you depressed? Find a therapist. Are you injured or sick? Seek medical attention. Do you need a friend? You probably have friends—call them. Are you in denial about a relationship, or afraid to leave a toxic partner? It’s time to make a change.
There are people who love and will offer you support. You are not alone in this. Whatever your cold dark night is, seek warmth and assistance. Accept help.
The Charity Card
The Six of Pentacles is a card of haves and have-nots, but it is also a card about generosity. A bougie woman rains coins down on some outstretched hands. Are you in a stable enough place to extend help to others? Be generous! Do you identify with the outstretched hands? Accept help without self-judgment.
We live in an unfair world. Wealth is not equitably distributed, and much of our self-worth is tied up in what we have and our ability to earn. Look at the scales. The Six of Pentacles urges you to consider how you can bring balance. If you are financially fortunate, how can you give back? If you require assistance, is stubbornness stopping you from accepting it? Often we can conceptually accept that our economic standing is mostly a product of systematic circumstance, but we are still selfish with good fortune, or embarrassed to accept aid.
It is worth noting that the pentacles here do not just stand for any gift of value, not just money. They could stand for a job referral, hand-me-downs, hospitality, or donated time. The Six of Pentacles urges you to give and receive freely, without judgment or shame.
Take a Contemplative Break
Sevens are about reflecting upon your situation. The person in this card has paused working to consider his garden’s progress. Your garden is a thought-out investment that is intended to sustain you in the long term. It’s time to observe what you have built so far and ask yourself if you are still on the right path.
And maybe you are! The Seven of Pentacles isn’t here to pat you on the back OR tell you that you need to start over. It’s simply asking you to take a moment and think about your project (or your job/house/relationship to your body/whatever else you’ve been working on), and how it is affecting you. Is this path sapping your energy and not giving enough back? Perhaps something can be done to improve the situation. Maybe this project, job, exercise routine, or idea just isn’t worth your time. Or maybe everything is going great—in which case, good job, you! Take a moment to bask in your imminent success.
Regardless of how prolific your efforts have been, the Seven of Pentacles asks you to intentionally reflect on their result. If your garden is good, admire it. If it sucks, figure out why.
A man labors over the creation of eight coins. The task takes up all of his attention, and he is absorbed in his work. I call the Eight of Pentacles the ‘apprentice’ card because an apprentice, whether actual or metaphorical, is learning skills with diligent determination to become a master in his craft.
In some cases, the Eight of Pentacles simply speaks to the satisfaction of creating something with your hands, and encourages you toward tactile creative pursuits. I based the figure in this card on a friend of mine who was an apprentice machinist at a shipyard and taught classes at his local Makerspace Cooperative. He worked hard and took great satisfaction from making things with his hands. Even if I hadn’t seen this friend in years, he’d greet me with a handmade gift.
If this card comes up in a reading, you need to put in the work to hone your skills. While the day-to-day labor or education may get boring, it will all be worth it. If you are not currently engaged in any ‘apprentice-like activities’ such as education, work, or learning a craft, the Eight of Pentacles is probably suggesting that you should be.
Chilln’ in My Bitchin Garden With All My Accomplishments
Nice! This cool-ass lady has her garden, her sweet clothes, her house, and her sick bird friend. She’s really living her best life. The lush landscape represents her accomplishments. The calm falcon symbolizes intellectual power and self-control.
Here, you finally get the bounty you have worked for. You have attained the glories of stability, material comfort, leisure time, and a big ol’ garden. You have made this happen through your choices, self-discipline, and risks that were ultimately successful. Worries about finances no longer take up valuable space in your brain. You can make choices more freely, not driven entirely by material needs.
The Nine of Pentacles suggests you’re self-confident and self-sufficient. Let this card reassure you that you are doing well. Perhaps you are already in this state of luxury, in which case, congratulations! If the glory of the Nine of Pentacles feels out of reach to you, this card is here to tell you that it is not. You are still doing okay. You are moving in the right direction, closer to your garden. Think of the Nine of Pentacles as a goal, and continue working towards it.
Prosperity You Can Pass On
An elder looks upon his home from a position of pride and comfort. He is surrounded by his multi-generational family. He is financially capable of sharing with his family and ensuring they will be supported in the future, which leaves him feeling happy and content.
This is a card about finishing on a high note. When the Ten of Pentacles appears for you, it affirms that your choices and actions have culminated in material stability. If you are in a Ten of Pentacles position, use your excess wealth for good. If you have a family, consider their future and set them up for success. Be charitable to good causes. How can you help the next generation?
If this card comes to you at a crossroads, or when the comforts of the Ten of Pentacles feel impossibly far away, it is time to start thinking long-term. The Ten of Pentacles suggests that your time of scrappy living should come to an end. This is a great time to plan for the future, invest in something secure, or allow your personal life to develop into a family. Picture your ‘high note’ and make decisions that will get you closer to it.
Student of Ambition
Like all the Pages, The Page of Pentacles is a dreamer. She stares, transfixed, at the golden pentacle as she wanders through blooming fruit trees and freshly-sown fields. She may have little to no experience, but she has aspirations to manifest her goals in the material world. The Page of Pentacles is the sort of person who will take the opportunity presented in the Ace of Pentacles and use it.
If you are the Page of Pentacles, it is time to gather your motivation and channel that energy towards action. Take those crucial first steps. Stay realistic, and create a plan. Sign up for a class, reach out to a mentor, or just start doing it.
If the Page of Pentacles is someone in your life, they are likely an optimistic and ambitious person in need of your mentorship or support. I based the Page of Pentacles off my friend and former intern, who I think is incredibly talented, bright, and willing to learn new skills. I have no doubt that she’s going to wow us all. If you are willing to give time and guidance to the Page of Pentacles, this relationship will be rewarding for you both.
The One Who Rides All the Way Through
The Knight of Pentacles is grounded. He has duties and responsibilities, and he is going to live up to them with diligence. With a work ethic like his, he will be successful and find joy in that success. He is reliable and often a perfectionist.
If you are the Knight of Pentacles, it’s time to knuckle down and take satisfaction in your work. You have the opportunity to build something stable. Don’t slack, cut corners, or run off and mess it up. If the Knight of Pentacles comes to you, it’s a clear sign that you are going to have to stick a situation through. Sometimes, the Knight of Pentacles comes up when your vision has become too limited. You know you have what it takes to put in the work. Can you dream bigger?
If the Knight of Pentacles is someone in your life, they are a reliable person. I chose to draw my dad as the Knight of Pentacles because he is hard-working and diligent. He is always there for me. He works hard all day, cooks delicious meals every night, and fixes the garage door on the weekends. My dad is my rock, and therefore, my Knight of Pentacles.
Our Lady Who Has It All
“Can women have it all?” To this infuriating question the Queen of Pentacles answers a resounding YES. This Queen is one capable bitch. She earns a decent income, keeps a beautiful home, and takes loving care of her family. She enjoys the material spoils of her labor and uses them to enrich her own life as well as the lives of her loved ones.
If you are the Queen of Pentacle, it is time to channel all of her positive traits. How does she do it? The answer is stability. The Queen may seem capable of doing just about everything, but the truth is, she has made calculated choices to build a life that is sustainable and within her means. She’s not about to run off after an outrageous idea or a risky love interest. She is efficient, capable, and does not take irrational risks. Sometimes, building this kind of fruitful stability requires sacrifice and a narrowed focus.
If the Queen of Pentacles is someone in your life, she is likely someone incredibly nurturing. She is practical and reliable. She is a good friend and dedicated family member. If she has come into your life, then you are very lucky indeed.
Leadership Through Abundance
The King of Pentacles reigns over leadership, ambition, and generosity. He is rich in material goods, which he accepts without hesitation because he has no doubt that he has earned them. The King of Pentacles fully enjoys the fruits of his labor and delights in the physical aspects of life. Most importantly, the King of Pentacles uses his wealth to enrich the lives of others. He comes by his abundance honestly and gives generously.
If you are the King of Pentacles, it is time to use what you have to help others. Consider giving some of your wealth to a charitable cause or using it to build something that will do good in the world. What you give or build depends on your interests, position, and skills. It could be money, material goods, expertise, or your time. The King of Pentacles says: if you have it, give it.
If the King of Pentacles is a person in your life, they are likely a leader in some way. You may be put off by their materialism, but try not to hold their authoritative position, popularity, or wealth against them. This is a generous person who will enrich your life and your community.