The Sun: Radiant Joy

Today was absolutely dire — gloomy, rainy and depressing. Picking the Sun card on a day like today was ironic and yet, was an important reminder that you need rainy, grey days to appreciate the sunny, beautiful days.

Sometimes when I am feeling particularly sad or upset, I have to remind myself that the reason I feel so strongly is because I care that much, and it’s that very investment that also makes me feel joy and equally strong positive emotions. You need the lows to feel the highs, and vice versa.

19. THE SUN

The Sun from the Rider-Waite Tarot Deck

What you see: The Sun shines brightly on a naked child riding a white horse. The child wears a wreath of flowers with a red feather on its head and in its left hand it holds a red banner. Behind the child and horse, is a walled garden with four sunflowers peeping over.

What it means: The Sun represents the source of life on earth, and the sunflowers represent the four elements (or four suits of the Tarot). The child represents joy and happiness, with nothing to hide, and the horse is purity and innocence. The red banner is the blood of renewal and things changing for the better, while the wall is a symbol of holding back.

The story: As a character, the Sun is optimism, radiance and success. As an event, it represents the fulfillment of material goals. As a relationship, it represents warmth and vitality, strengthened bonds and romance. As a sign, it signifies a good omen — that things are going to get better.

As part of the Fool’s Journey: The Sun is the return to innocence at the end of life; overcoming the illusion and accepting death through spiritual enlightenment.

Reversed meaning: When pulled upside-down, the card represents depression or failure, pessimism and generally bad omens.

In mythology: Helios was the Greek God of the Sun, and was thought to ride a golden chariot from the east to the west everyday. In Egyptian mythology, Ra was the Sun God, often considered the King of the Gods.

Potential insights: As dark and awful as life can get, most of us are drawn to the light. We look for reasons to be joyful and relentlessly pursue happiness.

Sometimes I need to remind myself that there are simple, beautiful things that can lift my spirits if I remember to take a second to pause and appreciate it — a sunny day, flowers, twinkling lights… pure and simple joy.

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

Deck: The Rider-Waite Tarot Deck®

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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.