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The Lovers Card in Tarot and How to Read It

Andrea has a background in Myers-Briggs and Western astrology. She mostly writes about relationships.

People generally like to see the Lovers card on the table. For many, falling in love is something they want to do in their lives. Most people want to find someone who clicks with them.

People generally like to see the Lovers card on the table. For many, falling in love is something they want to do in their lives. Most people want to find someone who clicks with them.

The Lovers Card in Tarot

Tarot is about the Fool's journey. After meeting several teachers, getting guidance from parental figures, and going through the education system, the Fool is ready for some independence and to strike out on their own.

Some of the most important parts of your life are relationships. I don't just mean the lovey-dovey kind. Your parents should have taught you what good relationships look like. You should have learned how to make friends, strike up conversations with teachers, and learn how to be considerate of strangers. Great parents teach you to be conscientious.

Most people want a long-term romantic partner. Someone they can share their day-to-day with—both the good and the bad. This person is their confidante and someone who is there for life.

The Lovers card is about leaving your home and finding someone you believe is on a similar journey to yours. You might describe this person as your soulmate, a twin flame, or something less cosmological and more akin to a spouse.

It's completely normal to want a romantic partner. This is someone who shares in your secrets. You can find a worthwhile partner once you have achieved enough personal development, gained enough social charisma, and have accepted that yes, you have flaws.

The Lovers card is the sixth trump of the Major Arcana.

Tarot Basics

  • There are 22 cards total in the Major Arcana.
  • There are 56 cards in the Minor Arcana.
  • 78 cards total in a Tarot deck.

Card Alignments

Upright

Attraction, harmony, union, alignment, choices, love, beauty, trials overcome, partnership, romance, sensitivity, passion, courtship, dates, companionship, adoration, positive vibes, success, flirtation, sweetness.

Reversed

Failure, foolishness, dissolving union, divorce, partnership frustrations, self-love, disharmony, imbalance, contradictions, insensitivity, miscommunication, fractured relationship, blocked energy, neglect, dismay, sourness.

The Lovers card isn't always about a romantic pairing. It could be the union of two opposing forces. It could also be the union of the conscious and subconscious.

The Lovers card isn't always about a romantic pairing. It could be the union of two opposing forces. It could also be the union of the conscious and subconscious.

The Search for Romantic Love

The Lovers card generally refers to relationships, not always about a romantic partner but sometimes a friend or business partner. It could also refer to a creative project or business endeavor. In the upright position, this card has positive connotations. In the reversed position, it usually means something negative is taking place. It could also be an encouragement to withdraw and reconsider your stance.

For the most part, the Lovers card represents relationships and choices. It could be about an existing relationship or one to to take place in the future. It could also be about a temptation: the querent might see it as some crush or forbidden love. The Lovers may also represent a potential suitor.

The Lovers Card Demands Sacrifice

In order to gain a lover, something must be sacrificed. This is the case for any situation.

  • One must sacrifice their singlehood if they want to enter a relationship.
  • One must breakup with someone if they want to enter a relationship with someone else.
  • The first real step to any relationship is sacrifice. You must consider the cost. If the cost doesn't match the gain, then you are sacrificing too much or giving yourself to a weak partner.

If you try to date or partner up with more than one person then you sacrifice both relationships to some degree. You won't be focused or fixated enough to give yourself in full to either person; therefore, you won't truly be in a relationship with either party.

A choice in this area should be taken seriously. Your choice could be lasting. It could have long term ramifications.

It is difficult to find someone and envision a whole future with them. You can't really predict if it will endure for decades. You want to find someone that has that kind of reach, but at the end of the day, you will have to take a leap of faith.

You won't know the longevity of a relationship until it has run its course. You don't know if divorce will take place or if one of you will die early.

Think Logically and Emotionally in Terms of Love

  • From the very first moment of attraction, you should ask yourself if there is something there that could be lasting.
  • Once you build a relationship with someone and it solidifies, it becomes hard to untangle.
  • Some relationships will need to untangle because they no longer support one or both parties.

A great deal of your childhood is spent observing your parents and adults. You watch them and how they relate to each other. We see our parents as models for relationships, and we decide what out of those relationships actually works.

It's better to observe and gain as much knowledge as possible about romantic relationships before getting into one. This way you're prepared for a long-term relationship.

Not everyone will be drawn to partnership. Some people will be drawn to other causes and lifestyles. Some people skip the Lovers card. Singleness should be championed first and exchanged only for a great partner.

Influences on the Card

The Lovers card is influenced by the air element and is associated with Gemini. Gemini is the mutable sign of air and it occurs at the end of May and into mid-June. The card is also known as the Twins in some decks.

Gemini is known for:

  • Intelligence
  • Communication
  • Logic
  • Beauty
  • Duality
  • Liveliness
  • Quirkiness
  • Mirroring Others
  • Curiosity

The Lovers card parallels the Two of Cups, which is a water-based card. Both cards are about initial attraction and have imagery related to the Garden of Eve.

  • Traditional Tarot card decks have a lot of symbolism connected to Christianity.
  • Tarot has been around for centuries, it was created in Europe, and Europe was largely ruled by Christian iconography.

Traditional Design

In the traditional version of the card, a couple receives a blessing from a cleric. The couple has been given permission to be together. The cleric's blessing acts as a stamp from God.

In the Rider Waite deck, the imagery is based on Adam and Eve. There are two people in the card, making it more intimate than the one with the cleric. The number two gives the card a stronger tie to Gemini and the sign's duality.

The card's floral images represent the spring season, nature, and the Garden of Eden. Nature in this card blesses the couple and their union.

The Rider-Waite card also includes the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. This tree is sometimes referred to as the Tree of Life.

Symbolism

Meeting With an Angel

The Lovers meet in the Garden of Eden. The angel Raphael, which means "God Heals," represents both physical and emotional healing. The angel blesses the couple. The angel reminds them their union is divine as it was set in motion before they met.

The Landscape

The couple stands in a fertile landscape. It's a paradise. They're in the right place. They're in the right state of mind.

The place is beautiful. It's flowing with milk and honey. The fruits and vegetables taste refreshing. This is the way things are meant to be, but these paradises are not easy to find nor maintain.

If you want to maintain paradise, you must put intention into it. Otherwise it will be overrun by weeds.

The Tree

This is one of the more complicated images in the card. Humans have worshiped trees since they first started walking on the planet. The tree represents the evolution of life.

Taking of the tree's fruit may open your eyes, it could change you from within, and it could tell you lies. When Adam and Eve ate of the fruit, they fell short of their roles. They were kicked out of the garden for their disobedience.

They no longer belonged in paradise. But you could interpret this scenario in another way. Maybe the fruit was meant to be eaten. The fruit was necessary to initiate them, so that they could be sent into the world to expand the range of paradise.

Serpent

The serpent is a symbol for Scorpio. The serpent is full of emotions. He is manipulative, controlling, and divisive. He wants the humans to eat the fruit because he knows what will happen next. Eating the fruit will change them. It will cause disconnection with God.

Some see the snake as Satan. Others see the serpent as the psyche. One way or another he is the initiator.

The serpent doesn't act as an accuser, like the devil does. He pushes the humans to break their pact with God, so they can have freedom.

The consequence of their actions: they're no longer allowed to walk in the presence of the Divine. They're separated from it. They see and experience mortal failings. They no longer have the belief they did as children that they would live forever. They're awakened into existential despair. (Accepting death as reality is a step all people will eventually take.)

Tree of Flames

The tree represents passion, which is the primary concern of Adam. The Tree of Fire may represent the Cherubim with the sword of fire who prevents the couple from coming back into the garden.

12 Flames

This symbolizes the 12 zodiac signs, which represent time and eternity. The 12 zodiacs are the constellations in the sky and they stay fixed in place.

Volcano in the Background

The volcano represents passion and physicality. Fire is the first element of the zodiac. Fire is the initiator. It runs on instinct, which is the first step to awakening.

The man looks to the woman. She looks to the angel. This symbolically shows the conscious looking to the subconscious, and the subconscious looking to the super conscious. This can also represent physical desire looking to emotional needs, and emotional needs looking to spiritual needs.

When two people fall in love under the right circumstances, it feels like destiny. It feels like you were meant to be. It feels like you belong to each other and that you always have.

When two people fall in love under the right circumstances, it feels like destiny. It feels like you were meant to be. It feels like you belong to each other and that you always have.

The Lovers Upright

The Lovers card represents a meaningful relationship in your life, often a romantic one. It indicates that you have a soulful connection with someone. You may be under the impression that you've found your soul mate.

  • It could also refer to someone who is a kindred spirit or like-minded person, like a friend, sibling, or parent.
  • The card is about someone who has key qualities: love, compassion, respect, and healthy boundaries.

The Lovers card means that communication is open and flowing. Both people are willing to reveal themselves and be vulnerable. The card encourages you to continue having open and honest conversations to strengthen the bond and create harmony.

The Lovers card can also mean that you are in a better place to accept yourself. You have come to a place of clarity when it comes to values and beliefs. This card is the next step after the Hierophant. The Hierophant teaches about belief systems; the Lovers is the result of what was learned.

The Lovers Card Is About Free Will: You Get to Decide

It is now time for you to decide what is essential to you. You've been given permission to make choices, and some of the biggest choices you'll make are in relation to others.

  • You get to decide the level at which you connect with others, for how long, and what will be deal breakers.
  • You influence your personal beliefs and values more than anyone else.

Not all decisions will be easy. The Lovers card often appears when you are at a crossroads. Your value system is always being challenged: the Lovers encourage you to take the higher path that isn't necessarily the easier one. The higher path will bring you to your highest good.

  • Do not carry out decisions based on fear or worry.
  • Go with the flow.
  • Don't dwell on your mistakes. Mistakes are part of the process of being human.
  • When you love yourself, it will be easier to love others.

The Lovers card encourages you to unite dual forces. Bring together two parts that seem in opposition. You need to bring your conscious and subconscious into alignment. Write out your dreams during the day, practice good sleep hygiene, take breaks into nature.

When you accept duality, the good and bad, you'll build more unity from within and love will come naturally to you.

The Lovers card calls on the querent to find more harmony. It encourages a life of love, to appreciate beauty, and to find inner acceptance.

The Lovers card calls on the querent to find more harmony. It encourages a life of love, to appreciate beauty, and to find inner acceptance.

The Reversed Lovers

When the Lovers card is in the reversed position it does spell disaster. It relates to blocked energy, miscommunication, temptations, and difficult times. It doesn't necessarily mean trouble in your love life: it can mean there are problems with your own inner self.

In one way or another, you're out of synch. Your rhythm is off. You're not making sense. You feel strain and tension almost all the time. You're lacking clarity.

The card in the reverse position is like Adam and Eve getting kicked out of paradise. They did something that made things not right, and they were no longer compatible with paradise.

If you're struggling in your relationship, you should ask the following questions:

  • Do you two still share the same values?
  • Do you feel like the two of you can't get on the same page?
  • Do you feel like things are futile?
  • Do you or your partner come off dismissive?
  • Do you feel betrayed?

You need to self-reflect and consider your relationship and its track. Remember why you fell in love with this person in the first place. If you love them unconditionally, then this time of trouble will pass.

You may have grown apart overtime. This happens. It's important to address it early, so you can fix it. If you wait too long you may have to make a hard choice: either continue with the relationship and repair it or end it.

If your relationship is a constant battle every day, you don't feel safe, and you never have anything nice to say to each other then you need to do something about it. Get counseling. Get a lawyer. Create some space.

Are You Two on a Different Page?

The Lovers card can also indicate that the feelings are not mutual in the relationship. One person may be emotionally giving more than the other. This could lead to a substantial gap in the future. Is there reluctance to give your heart? Do you struggle to share your thoughts? Is there a reason things are off?

Keep in mind your partner may be grieving something and needs to go through that before they can come back to some normalcy. We all process grief in different ways, and if we don't address it, the grief will manifest in weird ways.

Don't jump to conclusions about your relationship with your partner or simply with yourself. Let the anxiety cool. Be content. Don't let turbulence control you.

You might have to address a tough circumstance, but there will be relief on the other side of it. Choose the path that's best for your Highest Good.

If you're dealing with an inner conflict, know you are not alone. There are resources and people for you. Seek therapy. Get involved in a religious community that you trust. Spend time at a library reading resources and gaining knowledge.

Dial Things Back

You may want to go down a level and look back at the lessons of the Hierophant. Seek counsel and advice from a spiritual mentor. Look to someone who studies core principles and virtues.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2021 Andrea Lawrence

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