VI - The Lovers

VI - The Lovers - Tarot Card from the Rider-Waite Deck

Representing connection, friendship, emotion, and obligation; The Lovers card rarely pertain to a romantic connection, much like the Death card the immediate significance is not literal. Typically depicting Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden as the first human connection to exist, this card represents the social nature of humanity.

In the upright state The Lovers calls upon us to consider our relationship to others, although it can also be interpreted as self-love, it is almost always external in nature. The Lovers represent our attempt to form connections with others, platonic or romantic. This card asks us to consider those relationships and what external powers or influences are affecting the quality of those relationships.

In the inverted state the focus remains on our relationship to others but our focus changes, recognising the internal factors influencing those relationships instead, looking inward to consider the impact we are having on those relationship ourselves and how much energy we have devoted.

In the Rider-Waite deck the two humans depicted are Adam and Eve, standing in the Garden of Eden separated by a mountain that stands between them representing the struggles we face in life to find connection. Eve stands before the Tree of Knowledge, around which a serpent is wrapped representing temptation. Adam stands before the Tree of Life which also stood in the Garden of Eden. This card can also be interpreted as implying the feminine nature is governed by forethought, to think first, then act, whilst the masculine nature is governed instead by impulse, to live first, then reflect. Consequently, temptation grows when we devote thought to it, and lessens when we act or distract in order to avoid dwelling on those contemplations.

Above Adam and Eve within the clouds sits the Archangel Raphael, whose guardianship governs the domain of love in all forms, the Judeo-Christian interpretation of Aphrodite in Greek mythology, or Venus in the Roman tradition. Raphael’s presence represents the benevolence of the Universe to aid in the pursuit of the union of those who seek out one another and represents the divine will to encourage connection.

Ultimately The Lovers represents the unification of two or more influences, traditionally it focuses on your emotional connections to your friends and family. Whilst it is often interpreted as romantic in nature, this interpretation like that of many of the cards in the Major Arcana is not meant to be literal. This card even when taken in a spiritual context may have nothing to do with romance at all, more often it represents a meeting of the minds.

In self-reflection this card can be used as a prompt to consider the relationships that already exist as well as the potential relationships you could form in your situation. The goal here is to revaluate the impact those relationships are having.

Where the Magician emphasised the interconnectedness of the four domains within our own lives, this card puts emphasis on how each of those are affected by our connections to other individuals. What connection do you have to the thoughts, feelings, actions, or physicality of another individual or collective and how are those affecting you.

Where our thoughts may lead to feelings, or our feelings may lead to thoughts, this card serves to question which of the thoughts and feelings that we have originate in those of others and whether we want to continue to permit that influence.

Ask yourself “What is influencing me?” or “Who is influencing me?” and “Do I want to be influenced?” once more repeatedly asking “Why?” can help you find the root of a belief, or in this case “Who?” reiterated as “Who made me think that?”

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