Ten of Pentacles: Legacy and Privilege

The card I picked today depicts what looks like a happy family scene — the scene that the movie would probably close on. I don’t know how I feel about it. I am both envious and annoyed by these figures. I suppose I’ve been obsessing over injustice and the disparity between the rich and the poor (I am fully aware of where I sit in this picture; these are observations).

My personal fear that is clearly colouring all of this is the worry that in the end I will still be struggling — that all the instability that has been with me my entire life (no permanent “home”, family and friends all over the world) will continue, and I will never get to the point where I truly feel settled. I also feel like I don’t have perspective — does everyone feel this way? Is everything that I want (a home that’s mine, family and friends nearby, roots) an old way of life that doesn’t actually exist anymore?

Ten of Pentacles from the Rider-Waite Tarot Deck

What you see: An old man in rich garments sits by a archway with two white dogs at his feet. On the bridge are the same family coat of arms as can be seen on the old man’s cloak. Below the arch is a couple with a young child who is playing with one of the dogs. In the distance the rest of the town can be seen. Ten pentacles are placed all around the scene.

What it means: The man is the patriarch of his family, who surround him. He is relaxing because he has accomplished his goals and the results are in front of him — happy loved ones and financial security.

The story: The Ten of Pentacles represents financial stability for a legacy; inheritance and traditions that ensure the security of your future.

Reversed meaning: Reversed, the card represents family disputes and bankruptcy; debt or breaking traditions.

Reflection: The pentacles in this card seem to be all over the place and in some ways hampers the ability to see what’s going on clearly. It’s very evident that this is a busy card and potentially reflects what it is like when you are happy in a moment and step away to remember how it felt. Almost like watching a scene from far away, while you are in it. I assume this is what the patriarch is probably doing as he surveys his legacy.

My research sources:
A Complete Guide to the Tarot, Eden Gray, 1970
Tarot Card Meanings, Biddy Tarot
Card Meanings, Labyrinthos
Root Lock Radio: A Tarot Podcast

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Tarot Stories

A Canadian marketing strategist learning storytelling through the Tarot, and maybe finding the meaning of life along the way.