4 of Cups

Meaning

The message of the 4 of cups is a reminder that things aren't always as they seem, and we are to look around us for the obvious opportunities that are there. The opportunities may not be directly in front of us where we are most inclined to look, but that certainly does not negate their possibility or presence. Sometimes however we go through our lives expecting things to be a certain way or turn out a certain way, like the man is staring at the three cups before him stubbornly. Sometimes our aspirations are realized in the form of a fourth cup, offered in a place where we can not immediately see it. This is the message of this card. Focusing too much on our expectations, rather than our reality, will close us off to opportunities that could yield abundance. If this card appears in your day, the message is to uncross the arms, and open your mind to other possibilities in the situation at hand. Chances are, the answer is around you, but you will only be able to seize that day if you open your eyes to the full picture, and not just what is in front of you.

Symbolism

In this card we see a man on a grassy knoll type of setting, he has three cups in front of him and behind him there is a cup being offered with the outstretch of a hand. But he does not see this. His arms are crossed and he is focused only on the 3 cups before him, likely wishing that he had more. The symbolism in this card then is, he can have more, if he just opens his mind to the possibilities around him. He is so busy focused on the 3 in front, that he loses opportunities that are around him, without him even realizing this. 4's in the Tarot often signify fixed signs, as it is the 4 fixed signs that make up a foundation. Fixed signs are notoriously stubborn, and sometimes to a fault. That is the message of this card. Someone is being stubborn to a fault, and as a result are missing out on a golden opportunity that, may not be right in front of them, but is there all the same.

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