Robin Wood - Temperance - 14


To me, this card is generally all about balance. The angelic figure, with golden wings and hair, clothed in pure white, appears peaceful, calm and focused...yet adept at juggling his gold, silver and crystal balls and capable of handling issues both worldly and other-worldly.

When this card appears in a reading, depending on where it falls in a spread, I wonder if balance is needed, is already achieved or is being resisted or toppled by the querent or outside forces (reversed).

The beautiful setting for this card...with blue skies, yellow irises, a clear brook, and mountains in the distance all show to me how when balance is achieved life can run a whole lot better than when balance is off-kilter. This balance can be directly related to me personally (ie. within myself) or to how I fit into the scheme of these things close to home or of a more worldly nature.

In Robin's book, I liked how she mentioned the card also brings into mind patience. Achieving balance isn't always easy in all of life's situations. Much work often has to occur for things to run smoothly. With patience, I'm reminded that good things can come from striving for balance in my life. I'm reminded that I must be patient for things to fall into place.

Judith D

This card also says 'balance' to me. But there is also the aspect of merging opposites - synthesis - bringing opposing sides together. It is also moderation. However, in a reading a couple of weeks ago, the immediate reaction to this card by the querent was that this was her guide, juggling her life, and telling her that he was looking after everything and would put her on the right path. The juggled balls were all the aspects of her life that he was controlling - she may think they were being thrown around but he had total control and she should feel confidence in him. So - actually all aspects included: patience, balance, merging.
Looking at that calm but strong face one can feel that all things will be possible.


I love the golden wings. I am often attracted by the triangle in the square, on his garment. I still not able to explain with words the attraction with this part of the card yet. It seems that the square contain the triangle.


This part of the forest reminded me a great deal of a place I used to visit a lot. It had the exact layout of a path which wound through woods toward a waterfall. I was thinking about that when I saw another smaller trail veer off to my right. There would be a meadow, I thought, and stepped onto the footpath, following it, and I noticed the butterfly had taken that same way. I was struck by the thought that I'd really left my old life behind; was on an adventure of the sort I'd dreamt about.

Within a short while the trail opened into a meadow. The world brightened greatly, and the scene was breathtaking. Far across from where I stood were the mountains, hidden just below the zenith by a massive cloud cover. Rising up through the wedge of two peaks the sun was brilliant. A light breeze brought the sweet scent of wild flowers to me. Turning at a sound, I saw the most elegant of beings. He stood, one foot in a clear pool of water, the other foot on the smooth surface of rock. He was tall, slender and had the most amazing pair of gold wings rising up from his back. He wore a very simple, pure white robe. It took me a while to note that he was juggling what looked like three beautiful crystals of different colors. There was an odd familiarity about him. At this, he smiled, as if he knew what I'd been thinking. He reminded me very much of 'The Keeper Of The Garden' I'd met often in the Crystal Garden Of Healing.

Was that possible? Was the Garden actually real? Seeking to puzzle that out, my gaze went beyond him where a small rocky byway meandered across the meadow toward the mountains. The butterfly stopped for a few moments at a flower near him, just on shore from where he stood.

I felt refreshed just being here. Everything about it was open, friendly, warm, and sunny and most welcoming. Returning my gaze to him, I studied, from a distance, an emblem sewn to the front of his robe. It was a yellow square, within which was a triangle. I wondered what it might stand for. No sooner had the thought formed when another followed; it is the square of reality, and the trianle is Spirit. Together they mean 'Spirit in flesh' which is what we all are and that is LIFE itself.

Everything here spoke, to a great degree, of all the things which I'd been seeing and hearing about these past many weeks. Purity, Mastery, in this case of all the elements: fire, water, air and earth. This was another place of beginnings, as the rising sun implied and of new ways, and new landscapes to be explored.

I wondered in what way the knowledge had transmuted, because it was ever changing, and like the crumbs from the gingerbread house children, I was getting tidbits with each meeting; another piece of the puzzle.

What was this about? I sat down and just studied everything. It was simplicity itself. Nothing was overstated, which spoke of moderation. It was a middle road, and it was obvious that there were few twists and turns here. It was straight forward. There was a sense that within the very Temperance of this new path, the bits and pieces of each of my earlier meetings were contained here, within this auster world. It was about the penduluum slowing to a near standstill, where there was balance in all its perfection.


He's juggling balls rather than pouring liquid -- particles rather than waves? Three balls= Past, present, future. (In Tarot Plain & Simple, one title for this card is "The Angel of Time".) Also thesis, antithesis,synthesis.

In older decks, the Magician is often shown juggling, so this image connects Temperance with the Magician & the process of manifesting reality. Juggling = coordinating probabilities. The Magician shows manifestation from the conscious end, while Temperance shows conscious & unconscious working in coordination. I think this card relates to what Elias calls "the leprechaun", the part of oneself that translates energy into physical manifestation.

I like the way Wood calls the character a "winged man" rather than an "angel", implying that the spiritual capabilities shown here are available to so-called "ordinary" people, not just mythical beings. In dreams & on the astral, we all can fly!

The rainbow is not shown in this card, but perhaps the man is looking at it. Oddly enough, one of the balls is casting a shadow on the man's robe even though the sun is behind him, so there must be some other source of natural or supernatural light.