The Four of Wands
Dance with pleasure, sing Life.
Join the rocks and trees in chorus.
Wrap your legs around the mountains
And let your lips caress the river.
Join with Life in this moment
— from Psalm 95, Earth Psalms, by Angela Magara
From the past weeks’ difficulties and deprivations of the Four and Five of Pentacles, our journey this week takes us to another Four – the Four of Wands. While the stability and completion of the fours can be stagnation in the Earthy Pentacles, the grounded fire of the Wands makes for a much more balanced and happy result.
The couple approaches the canopy, which very much resembles the Jewish wedding chuppa. However, it is not enclosed, but instead open to the sky, and decorated with grapes and flowers, obvious references to fertility, beauty and growth.
The man and woman are exuberantly waving flowers, and they are followed, or perhaps watched, by a crowd further back. The happy couple is also crowned with flowers, or maybe the laurel wreaths of victory.
Mary Greer observes that this card is a celebration of the duality of animus and anima coming together in harmony. It may represent the Hieros gamos (the sacred marriage) that integrates, not only the male and female, but opposing energies within the self. As such, Mary notes, the Four of Wands is a “rite of passage; in the Golden Dawn system it’s called ‘completion’ and its astrological attribute, Venus in Aries, represents the equinoxes, marking the end of one stage of life, and the beginning of another.”
And speaking of stages, this is one of the cards that artist Pamela Colman Smith, who was also a theatre designer, created with a long, double horizontal line in the foreground, separating the players and scenery into a backdrop, as in the theatre. It is as if the wands are floating in front of a stage, where the actors are playing their roles.
So this may remind us that the marriage we are seeing may or may not be a literal one. However, a wedding this week would certainly be blessed. In fact, any happy celebration of success and moving into a new chapter of life would be auspicious.
For this is the card of the happy home, the fruitful harvest celebrated after focused efforts, and the magic of the hearth. May you happily enjoy and share the abundance that is now bearing fruit.