Today’s Card: Five of Cups
The 5 of Cups depicts a woman gazing sadly at four cups in front of her. These four cups all appear to be empty (or, on the verge of being empty). Next to her, there is another cup, though this one is filled with something colorful.
In some decks, the figure is shown standing in front of a river. Some decks also portray two filled, upright cups behind the person and three knocked over.
All, though, portray the person focusing intently on the empty cups while ignoring the upright one(s).
Minor Arcana – Cups:
The suit of Cups is associated with the element of Water and represents emotions and relationships.
In general, the 5 of Cups represents heartbreak, loss, and regret.
The woman in the card is shown in a state of quiet sadness – she’s not hysterical or distraught, but rather, she’s sitting outside alone, quietly mourning. In this way, the 5 of Cups often represents a literal loss – loss of a loved one, of a job, or of a relationship.
If you notice, the woman doesn’t appear to be heavily emotional. Again, it’s more of a soft, lingering sadness. This suggests that it’s not a new grief, but rather, one in which she’s allowing herself to wallow in.
This card can then represent regret over one’s past mistakes and failures, a feeling of abandonment, or continuing heartbreak over a previous relationship. It indicates having a lot of emotional baggage, instability, or disappointment.
The other really important feature of this card is the cups themselves. The cups in front of her are empty or turned over, symbolizing loss and loneliness. But the cup next to her is still upright and filled. The problem is that she’s too busy looking at the empty cups to notice it.
All of this works to suggest that she’s focusing too much on the negative aspects of her life and therefore, missing out on the positives.
They say that in Tarot, there are no “good” or “bad” cards – each card is meant to teach you something. But, of course, some cards have a more positive outlook than others. The 5 of Cups is generally regarded as a fairly negative card – as it suggests heartbreak, sorrow, disappointment, and bereavement.
Typically, this card indicates a great deal of sadness over something that happened in the past, though – feeling guilty or remorseful for the mistakes you’ve made, or holding on to anger, disappointment, and sorrow from a previous heartbreak.
Thus, there’s a positive aspect to the 5 of Cups that tends to be overlooked, which is that there are brighter days ahead.
You may be feeling sad or bitter over your ex, but there’s a beautiful, completely full cup sitting behind you. This upright cup can symbolize what you currently have in your life – the silver lining of your situation, the other aspects of your life that are going well. It could also symbolize something good still to come
Either way, the 5 of Cups is advising you not to spend so much time feeling sad and to instead invest your emotions and energy into all that you do have.
Guidance for your Love Life
As I stated earlier, the 5 of Cups is generally regarded as a more negative card in the Tarot deck. In a love reading, this card indicates heartbreak, sadness, loneliness, or regret.
You might be dealing with a recent breakup – perhaps you’re feeling a sense of remorse over what might’ve been. You might’ve made mistakes, too, that contributed to the breakup – such as infidelity – and you’re struggling with your own guilt.
This card might also mean that you feel as though you’ve lost your soulmate – maybe the breakup wasn’t recent, but you’re still struggling with letting a past love go.
If you’re in a relationship right now, this card could mean several things, though none are all that great, unfortunately.
It could suggest that a breakup is forthcoming, that you’re feeling a great deal of loneliness or abandonment in your relationship, or that you’re holding on to some anger from a previous fight.
More likely, though, is that you have some emotional baggage that’s affecting your relationship. Maybe you’re still holding on to feelings for an ex, or maybe you’ve got some unresolved abandonment issues that are causing some discord with your current partner.
If that’s the case, the 5 of Cups is telling you that it’s time to move on. Let go of the past, of your lingering regret and sadness, and embrace your present.
Thanks for reading! Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.