Temperance tarot card Temperance meaning Temperance reversed Meaning

Arcan: High arcan
Astrology: Sagittarius
Element: Fire

Temperance Description

An androgynous angel is the first thing you see on the Rider-Waite Temperance card; the angel’s appearance suggests an equilibrium between the sexes. The angel’s robe is simple but in the centre of the cloth lies a bold orange triangle within a square; this shows the Earth’s connection to the holy trinity whilst the glow of the triangle feels welcoming yet instils a prospect of foreboding. The angel’s face is stoic and concentrated, completely focused on exchanging the waters of the two golden cups in their hands; the direction of the water is impossible to determine which symbolises the concept of infinity and union; it can also signify the flow of spiritual awareness we experience on a daily basis as we tune in and out with our higher self. 

The angel stands above either a pond or river with one foot gently dipped in the water as the other stands on a patch of dry glass; this represents the duality between the subconscious and the conscious - between dreams and reality. Furthermore, the mountain range on the left contrasts with the meadow on the right symbolising universal experiences and individual tranquillity regardless of location or circumstance. 

The illustration presents stability and balance, it brings a sense of serenity to the viewer; the composition of bright greens, yellows, whites and reds is uplifting and depicts the ideal union between opposites - the beauty and order that comes with duality. The background shows the dawn which resembles fresh beginnings and a pastel sky that further feeds into the atmosphere of concord. Everything is exactly where it’s supposed to be.

Temperance meaning

Temperance’s advice is to dip your toes into new waters, ideas, developments and try new things without directly diving into the depths head-first; smaller steps into new projects or milestones work out better than taking huge leaps only to become overwhelmed and quit when things become too hectic. 
The Temperance card can also serve as a reminder; in times of tremendous stress it implores you to steady your nerves and keep calm, do not panic even if your situation feels dire; better days are coming.

When it comes to its meaning regarding personality (either your own or someone else’s) it suggests a level-headed person; someone who excels in the art of stoicism and is able to disregard meritless negative criticism and be unbothered by malicious people. This is a liberating trait and allows the individual at hand to explore life without worrying about public opinions, thus allowing them time and energy to explore new paths in life or to develop their skills in work, social or personal environments. Additionally, it can mean a person knows what they want and how to obtain it; this makes their creativity organised and they are able to achieve more than the average person if they dedicate enough time and patience to projects. 

This card is renowned for representing patience, stability and regulation; if this card appears during a reading it could be a warning that you’re falling into extremes which could lead to disaster; you should remain grounded and avoid tunnel vision - try to comprehend the complete picture before skipping to conclusions.
Likewise, it indicates life experience is forthcoming; there are lessons here to be learned. If you’re going through a challenging time, Temperence promises you will come out of it wiser than before; it’s all part of life’s journey. 

On a wider scale, this card indicates community union - there is peace and equanimity around you and in your social circles as you all work together for the greater good and your soothing presence helps ease their burdens. You are appreciated by those who love you. 
Alternatively, it could suggest you need to take some time to re-evaluate your intentions and priorities in life; reflect on yourself; you might find necessary changes are required in your life you hadn’t considered before. 

Temperance how someone sees you

Temperance as how someone sees you

Be wary if this card comes up during a love reading as a potential interpretation suggests obsession; if someone is romantically interested in you it signifies overly intense sentiments bordering on infatuation. Be direct and convey your feelings and concerns to this person, for there’s potential for their obsession to unhinge both their life and yours should it go unchecked. 

Temperance reversed Meaning

Temperance reversed Meaning

Chaos, pressure, anxiety; those words best define Temperance’s reversed meaning. It means there is too little balance or too much desire for control; other cards in the spread will help reveal what exactly is causing this disparity. By itself, it serves as a warning that if you follow one particular path it will result in excess or extremes which will offset the balance and cause uncontrollable chaos; do not walk upon this darkened path for it’ll lead you into the jaws of catastrophe. 
If you’re lacking plans for the future it can mean that you’re trapped in a personal plateau; taking it one day at a time can result in lopsided emotions and restlessness; you require goals to strive for to motivate yourself and to fall in love with life once more; speculate on what you need to work on and begin the essential steps to go on your personal journey. Without self-reflection or planning, you’ll be stuck, unable to grow. All good things must be enjoyed in moderation, greed breeds contempt. 

Temperance dates

Dec 13 - 21



You have led a harmonious life in the past; this taught you how to work well with others and this harmony is destined to repeat going forward. You have been influenced greatly by living in balance, it has changed you for the better. 


Desires you’ve wished for will be yours at last; you have worked diligently to achieve your dreams. Expect an increase in wealth, advancement in schooling or careers, a healthy relationship or even marriage to occur in your life. This joy may spread to your immediate loved ones. 


Be careful - practice moderation. Do not slip into indulgence. Future conflicts will be resolved if you keep a steady mind and think decisions through accordingly - a new chapter of your life is beginning.

Temperance yes or no

Yes / No

Temperance implies divine intervention and harmony. Its presence in your spread shows you possess great self-confidence and are in control of your own fate; the answer Temperance gives to your question is “most likely yes”. 
Keywords: tarot cards, tarot meanings, Temperance tarot card, reversed meaning

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