In the Cards: The King of Clubs



Doing an intuitive reading with modern playing cards is called “cartomancy” and it works just exactly like doing a Tarot reading. Makes sense, really – Tarot began as a game according to several sources. Tarot or gaming, cards are just bits of paper with images on them that help us to get at the real source of advice, guidance, wisdom and inspiration…human intuition.

Cards are often thought as a good way to start working with your intuition, because the images are so clear…it’s a very Zen thing compared to the detailed and complex images of the Tarot deck. So the advantage of playing cards is there are less details to be confusing. The disadvantage is that there are fewer details to spark our intuition. They are less demanding and more demanding in two different ways, essentially canceling each other out…it’s a wash. In my mind, playing cards and Tarot cards both give equally good readings. You just get to the same basic message by slightly means…all roads lead to Rome as they say.

Because of that, I think it easy to make a basic equivalence between the cards of the gaming deck and the minor arcana of the Tarot deck. Easy. In the case of the King of Clubs think King of Wands. I’ve always thought this was a vitally important card. It is often read as a “leader” or “leadership”. I put even more psychological weight behind it…almost heading into Major Arcana Emperor territory. I associate both of those cards with psychological terms like “authenticity” ” autonomy” and “self-actualized”. The card can either be an affirmation of maturity and mature decisions…or a call to become that. This card reminds us of our leadership and absolute authority over our inner world. We may not be able to control what other people do, we may not have any choice in our physical circumstances, but we have every choice and control over how we react to those circumstances. We may feel great emotion…but we choose how we act upon those feelings. It takes a lot to be king…and it takes a lot to react to strong emotion and extreme difficulties with love and compassion.

The King of Clubs reminds us we are the king of ourselves, if nothing else.

Rule well and create a happy kingdom.