The Meanings of the 22 Major Arcana Tarot Cards – The High Priestess:
Introduction to The High Priestess
The High Priestess is Key 2 of the Major Arcana in the Tarot deck. This card is ruled by the Moon. Whereas the Magician represents external knowledge, the High Priestess stands for internal knowledge and intuition.
The High Priestess is often depicted as a youngish woman with dark hair in Tarot decks. She is shown sitting on a throne and holds a sealed scroll bearing the letters TORA, which is believed to represent the divine law of the Torah. The High Priestess sits between a white pillar marked “J” and black pillar marked “B”. The white pillar contains the first letter of the word Jachin, which means beginning. Jachin is often called the Pillar of Wisdom and Mercy and is on the right of the High Priestess, as it is in the mystical Tree of Life. The black pillar on her left is marked by the first letter of the word Boaz, the Hebrew word for negation. Boaz is the Pillar of Severity in the Tree of Life. A crescent moon often appears with the High Priestess, usually over her or at her feet and symbolizes growing knowledge and insight.
The High Priestess Tarot card represents internal reflection and the essence of water. She represents and can be a birth card of sisters, daughter, an intuitive friend that can keep a secret and idealized lovers. The High Priestess can also signify counselors, single women, devout people and love without sex. It is the card in the Tarot deck of inner illumination and veiled mysteries. The High Priestess is the birth card of those born under the zodiac sign of Cancer. The number two, the number of duality, is associated with the High Priestess. She is also one of the Tarot birth cards of those that have the Hanged Man and Justice as their primary birth cards.
The High Priestess Upright
The High Priestess in a reading denotes a desire for independence and to be free from worldly matters, strong creative abilities, uncanny inner perception, and a thirst for learning. The card upright suggests meanings of authority combined with understanding.
The High Priestess appearing in Tarot spreads along with the Lovers can indicate a choice between pure love and pure sex. The High Priestess is associated with the Moon and the Hanged Man as cards that represent the element of water. If the High Priestess precedes the Hanged Man, the emotional meaning of all matters will be at the forefront. If the High Priestess follows the Hanged Man in a Tarot spread, the meaning of life’s mysteries will be unveiled with complete understanding on all fronts.
When the High Priestess appears in a Tarot spread next to the Wheel of Fortune, and both cards are upright, it means a lawsuit involving others. And if the High Priestess appears first with Justice in a Tarot reading, facts will only be revealed through litigation. If Justice appears before an High Priestess, long-kept secrets connected with the law will finally come to light.
It is important to note when the High Priestess card appears with the Hermit in any given Tarot spread. If the High Priestess precedes the Hermit, a secret will be revealed but if the High Priestess follows the Hermit, a secret will be sealed away forever.
The High Priestess Reversed (RX)
The High Priestess card reversed can imply undeveloped talents, hypocrisy, and fear of commitment. Problems in physical and emotional relationships can also be present in a Tarot spread containing the High Priestess reversed.
Reversed, the High Priestess (rx) can mean a loss of stability and possibly violent upheaval. It means the inner voice is not being listened to at the current time. It can mean an over-reliance on others. The reversed High Priestess (rx) card next to an upright Temperance card indicates dark prospects that result in bewilderment and difficulty in finding a solution. If both the High Priestess and Justice card in any order appear in a Tarot spread reversed, justice will miscarry is some way.
The High Priestess in Regards to Love, Sex and Relationships
The High Priestess card represents platonic love and close relationships. The High Priestess represents the number two and her ruling planet, the Moon. Often this card appears in a confidential union that is noted for its depth and intensity. The High Priestess Tarot card in a reading suggests a deep but unspoken understanding between two people.