The Fours in the Minor Arcana of the Tarot

A square is a stable strong shape with four sides. The number four represents the material world, stability, firm foundations, structure, order, regularity, routine and discipline. Similarly as the square is a stable structure the four is a stationary energy or pause in activity representing a calming and stabilising influence. The four is connected with the element earth – practicality, work, order routine, money and security. The stability of this energy is coloured by the suit it is in.

4 of Wands
Upright Four of Wands Tarot Card Meanings. Achievements and celebrations, good times, a happy home environment and good news are all indicated... The four of wands can mean marriage, engagement, birth of a child, a birthday, graduation or some other achievement. There is structure to the creative energy of the wands. Keyword, family celebration, creative expression

Reversed: restriction on creative self expression, the rules and regulations of the situation prevent free expression and you may feel you have to comply with too many rules.

4 of Swords.

Upright: The destructive and painful quality of the swords are removed by the pacifying influence of the four. This card means there is a break or respite from troubles and stresses and a chance to recuperate and recover. Sometimes a physical recovery is indicated. A holiday may be indicated or even a stay in hospital to assist with recovery. It can also just mean that you are finding time to rest and have some balance in your life to ease the stress of a busy lifestyle. Keywords: Rest from strive and recuperation.

Reversed: Isolation and a feeling of being out of it. Illness or tiredness may be preventing you from being fully involved in some activity keyword: banishment, escape rejection.

4 of Cups

Upright: In the gentle, receptive, passive nature of this suit the four can bring boredom and apathy even if you are involved in doing things you have previously really enjoyed. You may feel stuck in a rut where there is nothing new happening. A change is needed maybe a new interest or hobby. You may take the good things in your life for granted. Keywords apathy, boredom, excess.

Reversed:

The boredom may be exaggerated to the point of depression, self indulgence and self pity. Any drive to make changes seems to have been lost and you may have the fatalistic attitude that how things are is all that they can be. You may need to seek help for overindulgence in alcohol, drugs or food or help with depression to find a more positive outlook.

4 of Pentacles

This suit is already associated with money and security so the added influence of the 4 brings resistance to change and obsession with material security and stability. You may feel a sense of security and emotional stability. After stress and strive this can be comforting but too much time like this you may become too set in your ways and overcautious: Keywords: stability and restricting security.

Reversed: there may be a sense of clinging too tightly to something you don’t want to lose. Being overprotective, overcautious or miserly making you defensive and feeling insecure.. This could apply to a relationship, job or anything that we cling on to for fear of any changing making the situation worse. Keyword possessiveness, miserliness.

Rider-Waite Tarot images used with permission of U.S. Games Systems, Inc., Stamford, CT USA. c. 1971 by U.S. Games Systems. Rider-Waite is a registered trademark of U.S. Games Systems. All rights reserved.  

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