The foundation of justice is good faith.
— Marcus Tullius Cicero, 106-43 BCE
Our guide for this coming week is a powerful Major Arcana card that we have not seen for several years. In a world that seems increasingly skewed away from such ideals, let us warmly welcome this visit from Justice.
After a hiatus of several years, I find it apt that Justice returns in this first full week of the Sun in the sign of the scales — Libra.
This card represents fairness and finding balance in all things. Justice is one of the three cardinal virtues represented in the Tarot. The others are Temperance and Fortitude (or Strength).
Throughout Tarot history, this card has been invariably titled “Justice” and is traditionally depicted as a woman with sword and scales. Sometimes she has a halo; almost always she is seated on a throne. Usually the sword is in her right hand, occasionally it is in her left.
According to author and expert Rachel Pollack, the image on the Waite-Smith deck is the Roman Goddess, Justitia, who is sometimes blindfolded.
But in the Tarot, She is connected to the psychic laws of Justice, “by which we advance according to our ability to understand the past.”
In order for this to happen, we must see clearly the truth about ourselves and about life; so Her eyes, like our own, must be open.
Not only does the Tarot image of Justice represent legal law and order, and making criminals pay for their wrongs, she is the representative of a deeper, Spiritual Justice.
Every day the news is full of people and groups who are seemingly getting away with dreadful deeds, yet appear to go free and unpunished. In fact, they seem to thrive.
From driving under the influence or cheating on partners, all the way up to mass shootings; systemic corporate cheating on environmental protections; vile, horrifying price hikes for life-giving medicines; the media’s adoration of megalomaniac sociopaths; and the vast, seemingly endless corruption in our financial and governmental institutions — all seem to deny the power of kindness, respect, and the greater good.
But eventually, things do sort themselves out. All of life is interconnected, and the world’s evildoers will someday, somehow, have to deal with the consequences of their actions.
The Justice card reminds us that Nature always adjusts, and the consequences of every action eventually come around. Despite how it sometimes looks, each and every one of us is, eventually, accountable.
We Are the Ones We are Waiting For
When Justice appears, the obvious expectation is that legal matters may be in the forefront. Money, real estate, law enforcement, inheritance matters, and civil or criminal jurisprudence could certainly be important now.
But additionally, since Major Arcana cards are less about particular events, and more deeply about our own spiritual awakenings, this is a time to be scrupulously honest in all your dealings.
Something is working out the way that it must, for there is karmic payback in play. What results might you now be seeing, due to decisions and actions that have been taken in the past?
Although some people may have enormous charisma, or sexual allure, or tantalizing offers of fame and fortune, such influence is almost never a match for our inner compass of right and wrong – our personal sense of Justice.
When the rich, famous, or powerful engage in (or fail to repudiate) racial slurs, ignorance, hate speech, and fear-mongering, they may enjoy a temporary notoriety. This can even look like success or triumph.
So, who will be the champion of Justice? Who will stand up and say, “Enough!” and insist on accountability and integrity?
It is in our hands alone to choose whether to support and reinforce the dangerous nonsense that passes for normal. Each and every person reading this is the ultimate champion — or else saboteur — of what is right, fair, and noble.
Bear in mind that the Justice card is not about punishment. It is about adjustment. The sword suggests that sometimes this won’t be pleasant. Justice pares things down with that sword so that the scales are made to balance.
Review, Reflect, Reconsider, with Mercury’s Blessings
Do you have an important decision to make at this time? Think it over carefully, with impeccable honesty and fairness, for it is likely to have long-term effects that will return to you one way or another. How can you restore balance where it is needed?
What declaration or verdict is waiting for your decision now? Weigh the evidence before you. This Mercury retrograde period is ideal for examining past decisions and reviewing the consequences of previous behaviors.
Hear all sides of the story. Do not act until you are quite sure you have considered all possible repercussions in terms of what is right and wrong, or how it could affect others in ways that might be unjust.
But you must, eventually, weigh in with your verdict, for indecision and denial have their own bitter fruit.
It is time to do what’s necessary, no matter how challenging, in order to gain, or re-gain equilibrium.
As long as you have looked honestly into your own heart and know you are acting in good faith, you can trust that, while this might not be the easy way, it is the wise and true way forward.