I have to admit that I’ve never really had much of a connection with today’s card, even when I drew it this morning I thought, hmm this is going to make for a hard post to write. I don’t know if I really have an answer for why this is, all I know is that it is one of the few cards where nothing really jumped out at me on first glance. So I think to help me learn a little more about the card I’m going to look into both the RWS version and the Shadowscapes card I actually drew :). What card could be causing this problem you ask? Funnily enough it is from the suit of Pentacles (I know right, shocking 😛 :P), not a card that often causes difficulties in interpretation, but definitely one I can’t quite grasp yet, the Ten of Pentacles.
Traditionally the Ten of Pentacles shows an elderly man bedecked in an affluent looking robe, looking out upon his children and grandchildren. He is comfortable in his retirement, living off the fruits of his labour, knowing that he has accomplished everything he has wanted to and that now he can provide joy and security for those he cares for. It is a card of enjoying affluence, feeling financially secure and seeing your ventures flourish. It is about searching for permanence in the world, creating a secure foundation off of which your can flourish and live happily. This links to a conservative way of life whereby you follow convention, trusting in your methods. For when you become successful in a material sense, why would you wish to rock the boat by shaking things up? I think this aspect of the card is one of the reasons why I’ve never connected too well to it. I’ve never really been one for following the established patterns of living, and if I was to become financially successful I would want it to come from a personal and imaginative source.
Like the Ten of Cups, this card shows a scene of ease and contentment, although it is one based more upon the material comforts of life rather than an emotional/spiritual contentment. What we must remember however, as we are shown through the progression of the suit of Pentacles, is that monetary wealth and prosperity can be gained and lost suddenly, dependant on your circumstances and life choices. Because of this fact I feel that the Ten focusses more on reaching this stage in your life, where you are financially stable, and then using it to start new ventures, and to share your wealth with others.
I have to admit I struggle to link some of those qualities to the Shadowscapes interpretation above. I can definitely see the affluence, represented by the woman’s silken dress and golden adornments, and the Peach she holds to her belly is a symbol of imortality and auspiciousness. Here I think it’s important to bring up another aspect I think is present in the Ten, that of a connection to our past and ancestry. She can look back to her past accomplishments with pride and the financial abundance she has worked so hard for will hopefully build a legacy that her children and children’s children will build further upon. And as for the Stained Glass World, well this imagery took me quite some time to come to terms with, but I’m now thinking there’s a connection here to how long-term efforts can bring with them fruition and wealth. And it is quite a purposeful creation, crafted by a master, representing wealth and art. It is also able to endure as a physical piece of art, which is suggestive of how the heights she has reached, for she is lying there upon an unfurled dragon, result from hard work, like that which was put into creating that stained glass masterpiece, and will make for a more secure and permanent place in the world
One more piece of imagery I’m really interested to see here is that the Dragon himself is unfurled! No longer is he coiled up around his hoard like that of the Four, he is open up to the world. Here I see a link to the elderly patriarch in the RWS card. This Dragon has seen a lot in his years upon this Earth, and worked hard to procure what he has. But now he is willing to share it with those around him, having picked this woman possibly out of admiration for how hard she has worked for what she has! Here we see the sharing of knowledge/wealth apparent in the Ten.
One more thing I’d like to talk about is the number Ten itself. Ten in numerology stands for a transition between an ending and a beginning. A time where you have stopped for a moment, in relief, grief, happiness or contentment, to get your bearings and reflect upon the phase of life just passed, waiting for that next Ace to pop up and bring with it the promise of something new. And linking them to their corresponding Major card, The Wheel of Fortune, we again see a lesson of cycles, what goes around comes around. I see this in the RWS card, where if you look closely, it looks as if the patriarch’s hand and that of the young boy are visually connected through the medium of the dog. An ending, represented by the elderly man, and a beginning, represented by the boy. It is as if he is handing over the reins to the young one. I see this also in the relationship between the Dragon and the Woman in the Shadowscapes card. The Dragon has lived for many years, and is passing on his knowledge and wealth to the woman. And ending making way for a beginning.
There is truly so much to take in, and this becomes more apparent when I pull a card like this, where I don’t have any strong intuition coming to the forefront. I am happy though that this card came to me, for it is solidifying the fact that although I may feel that I have an idea of what a card represents, there is always going to be more to learn about it!! I hope now though, that the next time the Ten of Pentacles comes up, I will have a somewhat stronger understanding of its meanings :).
Until next time, live well and prosper xx