Tarot Card Series: Ten of Pentacles


Ten of Pents--Robin Wood deck

Ten of Pents--Rider-Waite deck

Element: Earth

Number Importance: The number ten is primarily a number of the logical mind, the conscious mind, and fulfillment.  It is harmony.  For Pythagoras, ten was the symbol of the universe.

Important Aspects of the Card: The pentacles, the people, the wealth, and the lush surroundings.

Interpretation: This is a card that used to confuse the heck out of me.  What exactly was it saying?  Everyone looks happy, and prosperous, but there’s no action in this card.  But that makes sense as this isn’t a card of action.  The card shows affluence, wealth, prosperity, family, and happiness.  This card, like the other Ten cards, is the culmination of the choices and actions taken in the Pentacles suite. It is the result of the hard work and lessons learned in the previous Pents cards.  Giving away wealth indiscriminately didn’t work, but neither did holding on to it and becoming a miser.  But trying to gain more wealth, as the Seven card presents as a choice, is a poor choice here.

The Ten cards are the cards representing the learned lessons of the other cards in the suite, and in the situation presented by the questioner the Tens are a challenge to apply the lessons learned to the situation.  In the Ten of Pentacles, the solution given is to live in a balance.  You’re probably earning an income, but you aren’t attempting to amass wealth for the sake of wealth or to hold on to it; you are passing on wealth to others, namely the next generation (represented by the children in the card), but you aren’t giving indiscriminately.

This wealth could be material wealth, but not necessarily.  Spiritual wealth can be the subject as well, such as passing on good advice to a child or grandchild, or passing on wisdom and experience.  The main point of the Ten of Pentacles is to leave a legacy, to pass on something important to those who follow you.  The happiness shown in the card is then attained.

*Please remember, my interpretation may not be the same interpretation you or another person will have for this card every time in every reading.  Interpretations can vary according to what the card means to you.*

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One response to “Tarot Card Series: Ten of Pentacles

  1. I agree with your last note entirely, so take this as an interpretation that’s in conversation with your own rather than a correction.

    What you say here isn’t too different from what I feel about this card. I think the simple phrase “good inheritance” was the key to my understanding of it. The pentacles represent everything in the earth elemental AKA material plane AKA Malkuth. The body, health, money, food, drink, sex, family, warmth, work, and so on. 10 is the number of Kether, the crown, divine spark, spirit, the infinite, the I AM. So the 10 of pents is this lovely marriage of earth and fire; the spirit of earth if you will, the spirit thriving in a body and in every manifestation of what spirit-in-body needs. The same can be said about the King. He is the spirit of wealth, the spark of inspiration that makes wealth and has made wealth and will make wealth. When King goes home at night, he lives in the 10 of pentacles. He is the spirit of wealth, while the 10 is the environment, the niche for the spirit of wealth.

    Good family, good home, good health, good work, good earth – and yes, balance is key to all of that.

    I’m not particularly obsessed with the Kabbalah, but Waite sure was, so it’s fun to throw him a bone and plug the cards in to Kabbalistic symbolism to see just how far you can drag out their potential. The more I practice, the more I find that having a rudimentary formula of “number + element = meaning” in the back of my mind lends itself to a deep understanding of the cards in whatever context they appear.

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