Love and Romance

The High Priestess – Relationships, Love & Sex Associations

Released – Multiple Interpretations for The High Priestess (Upright and Reversed) when seeking insight on Relationships, Love, Romance and Sex. 

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Well, it’s taken a few weeks to get here, but at last I am ready to release this large body of work on The High Priestess and her associations with Relationships, Love & Sex. This is the third card in the Major Arcana series which focuses specifically on these areas. However, for the previous two cards, The Fool and Magician, I provided an extensive selection of one-line or brief examples to showcase their associations, facilitating the individual reader to expand on them. They were to act as interpretative triggers, not as definitive explanations.

These one-liners and brief analyses were compiled from an eclectic mix of traditional, and non-traditional tarot,  experience, intuitive responses, theories, and personal musings. I also carried out research on how other tarot reader’s interpreted these cards in relationship readings. I learned a lot form this exercise as it highlighted just how many approaches are out there and how personal response to a card can reveal ever-surprising connections, ones we may never have thought of before, but when pointed out by others, make complete sense. Why had I not seen what these other readers saw? By weaving these newly discovered associations with my own, I aim to create a rich tapestry of potential interpretations from all schools of belief and from the global tarot community who so generously share their views and theories in on-line tarot forums. We are all the richer for it. It blows wide open the often restrictive traditional or purist approach to reading tarot.

The High Priestess – Relationship, Love & Sex Interpretations Article Has Moved To It’s Own Page – Here

The Many Schools Of Tarot – Following Your Own Path

I occasionally receive comments or emails from disgruntled site visitors who insist that something I have written is completely wrong, and that I should change or re-write my work immediately. They usually add a list of the wrongs they have found me guilty of, citing certain ‘Tarot Authorities’ who say otherwise. This typically happens when a visitor to my site has learned tarot through a certain system and strictly adheres to it. Once they see something that differs from what they were taught, they immediately point the finger in accusation shouting ‘wrong’, ‘wrong’ ‘wrong’.  I learned tarot through several systems. I do not exclusively adhere to any of them. I have also found my own way in tarot and work closely with Archetypes, Elements and Numerology. I am not overly-concerned with tarot’s ancient mystical or religious history. I have limited knowledge of such things, but if I wanted to improve on that, there are numerous online study groups that deeply analyse tarot on this level. Neither am I an adept on the Kabbalah or astrology. Other readers are, each gravitating to the areas of tarot that most fascinate or resonate with them. I really don’t need to be able to recite the historical origins of the cards and how they came about. There are readers and teachers who like to know their stuff in this area. I am not one of them. Neither will I be able to sit down and write out a list of comparisons between all the systems. It doesn’t personally interest me. What I offer on this site is my approach to tarot, tarot seen and explained through my eyes, and a collective knowledge of disciplines that govern tarot. These are the disciplines that interest me, which I believe are fundamental to understanding the workings and process behind interpreting tarot. The rest I will leave to the numerous gifted tarot writers and teachers who will be happy to share their knowledge and perspective. I can only offer you mine. Not all of you will agree with it. That is fine, perfectly okay, and to be expected.

Tarot Evolving

The world has moved on since tarot was first developed and its associations were assigned. Whereas archetypes travel with us, they must evolve just like everything else in life. The archetypes Arthur Waite based his tarot on have changed. The biggest change could likely be that of the role of women and their empowerment. How could Mr. Waite have assigned interpretations to female archetypes that would reflect the women of today, as they are very different from the women of the world he moved in, regardless of how liberal he considered himself to be. New archetypes are also appearing which need to be added to the list. This will change our approach to tarot as they too must be accommodated.  We cannot read a spread for a client in the same manner a reader would have 30, 40, 50 years ago as their interpretations may no longer be relevant in modern society. Thus I have moved to liberate many of the archetypes and personalities within tarot so they can live and breathe in the world we enjoy today.

Developing A Versatile Repetoire

When conducting research for the Relationships, Love & Sex articles, it didn’t take me long to discover the many taroists, tarot artists and tarot deck creators (you will find loads of examples in this article) who seek to bring tarot up to date so that it resonates with real people. They have created art and decks that offer new perspectives on these well known iconic card images. Many take a new slant on how certain archetypes should be portrayed in art form; some making very controversial statements in the process. The ever-increasing presence of tarot writers and bloggers online also highlights a departure from traditional tarot when offering their understanding on the subject. This departure from traditional tarot is not a complete thing. On the contrary, the traditional associations are kept but are no longer considered their full repertoire. They are after all, the foundations they have built their knowledge of tarot on, but they are only the foundations. Over time, tarot writers, teachers and readers have begun to construct above the foundations, adding new floors, many in their own design, some now stretching up to the sky. They no longer retrieve their interpretations from just the one area, the one floor, or down in the basement where they are close to their foundations. Instead they have several floors and levels of interpretations, connections and associations to choose from and work with. When carrying out a reading, the reader must mentally and intuitively adjust their interpretations to the level of the particular reading and client they are working with. When attempting to find the right interpretations for their spread, they will automatically know which floor or level of their knowledge they will find them on. Like retrieving files from the filing cabinet when a request is received, they immediately know where to go to find them. They may flick past numerous files in instant dismissal, as what they are looking for cannot be found in them.

Something For Everyone & All Ocassions

Plucking interpretations from just the foundations may be exactly what is needed by one client, but another may require you to stop off at several floors, grabbing bits and pieces from each. Some may need to go straight to a certain floor if it is painfully obvious what information is needed. There is little point in taking the lift to the electrical goods floor, if it is a party outfit you seek. You won’t find what you need there. When you do arrive at the floor of choice, you may have to browse through what is on offer before finding just what you are looking for. At times we may have to select an array of interpretations and try them out to discover which one best fits. Like the shop assistant in a fashion store bringing items of interest to their customer in the fitting room, clothes they think would suit, the sales assistant must evaluate their client before making informed choices. There is no point bringing everything but the kitchen sink in, no point in selecting a size 2 when it is clear a size 6 or 8 is needed. They must only bring in what they think the customer will respond to. Should their customer be looking for an outfit for a funeral, parading a load of fancy wedding outfits or beach wear in front of them will prove futile and likely see them make a hasty exit.

Vive La Difference

The above analogies aim to demonstrate how sticking to one rigid approach to tarot will limit your ability to read on a multi-floor, multi-level basis. There is no point stocking your fashion floor with rails and rails of the same item in the same colour. In years gone by we had a very limited choice in everything. Now we expect choice, even multiple-choice. We also expect this of tarot. We do not want to limit ourselves to a handful of choices that suit some, but not others. We want to travel up and down all the floors to see what is on offer, to find that perfect fit. The world has expanded. People lives are so varied, so diverse, so active and ever-changing, it is now essential we can offer a selection that matches such variety. We expect to have the freedom to choose between something traditional, conservative and safe, or something high fashion, wild or outrageous – and of course all in between too. When reading for others, you will quickly discover that clients vary greatly. One client may seek information on love or relationships from a purely romantic or innocent position, while others will want to find out how sexually compatible they are, or why their sex life is out of sorts. Both readings will require different approaches and differing interpretations even if their cards are identical.

The Sexually Active High Priestess – A Dark Horse!

Considering the High Priestess in this manner, her traditional associations may work for the client who seeks romantic insight on a potential suitor or new relationship, but they will not be very applicable for the client who is actively engaging in a sex life. There is little point in advising the client that the High Priestess suggests virginity when it cannot be related to.

The High Priestess – Relationship, Love & Sex Interpretations Article Has Moved To It’s Own Page – Here

Because the High Priestess is such a complex archetype and confusing Major, I decided to extensively explore this fascinating and illusive creature to discover just what she might be getting up to when it comes to relationships, love and sex. Yes, sex too. Many will deem my approach extremely controversial where the High Priestess and Sex are concerned, as after all, she is known to be the archetype of Mary, the mother of Jesus, pure and pious. She is not supposed to be thinking about sex, talking about sex or having sex. She is supposed to be above all that. Yet The High Priestess regularly turns up in relationship or love readings, and from my personal experience, in readings where there is an affair or the desire for one. She also turns up in love readings as the person who holds power, and is often a manipulator or head wrecker. I have always worked to analyse how these circumstances would marry with her traditional associations, and when you look there is always a connection. The High Priestess is a Two card after all. Hence, we fill find duplicity. From researching numerous tarot decks for this article, I discovered a wide range of artistic interpretations for the High Priestess,. Her portrayals run from dream-like, ethereal, visionary, virginal, nun-like or crone, to wiccan, goddess,  seductress and femme fatale. It is very interesting to see her many guises.

Saint & Sinner

I believe the High Priestess is like many of us. When she is good, she is very, very good, but when she is bad, she is horrid. She tries to be good, and depending on her circumstances, environment and conditioning, she can remain good. But, is this really what she wants, or is it what others expect of her? Even where Mary is concerned, there is much debate about whether she had other children. Also, I like to think of the Reversed High Priestess presenting as the much-maligned Mary Magdalene, the supposed sinner, her reputation sullied, and her not here to defend herself.  It is the plight of the High Priestess who has a lot to live up to, big shoes to fill. Mary conceived through immaculate conception. Is the same expected of us in this lifetime? If we succumb to the sins of the flesh, are we doomed to be tarred with the same brush as Mary Magdalene? Are we mere mortals expected to don the High Priestess’s robes, retreat into her temple and give up our wanton ways? Whereas much of the High Priestess’s advice to retreat, withdraw, contemplate or resist, are often admirable and applicable, I cannot expect my clients to embody her likeness on all levels. Very few clients seeking advice about their relationship, love, romance or sex life will be interested in hearing about the merits of  platonic relationships, abstinence, or the simple holding of hands. Just like the Magician, they too are hot-blooded creatures. They will not readily identify with the more traditional aspects of The High Priestess even though they could do with taking a leaf out of her book at times.

The High Priestess & Pregnancy – No Immaculate Conception Here!

Therefore, I have giving the High Priestess a sex life. Not all the time though. She still retains her virginity, morals and principles, but there is another side to her, not just her Reversed one. I also connect her to pregnancy. More hands thrown in the air! Many taroists do too. Not the full-on pregnancy depicted in The Empress, who is the responsible for the giving birth part, and further procreation. Rather the High Priestess is more abstract in her connection with pregnancy. Not straight forward, but more complex. She is the mystery of conception itself, the part of us that controls how and when we conceive and what type of pregnancy we will experience. She is the divine protectress of motherhood and the baby as it grows. She is the first trimester where she hovers between her maiden and mother status. She is conception before the conscious awareness of it. She then hands over the job to the Empress in the second and third trimester but will accompany her in the birthing process, assisting her to access her natural skills and intrinsic body knowledge when enduring labor. She will support the Empress when she is too tired to push, when she says she cannot go on, the High Priestess will remind her that she can and will, that her body knows exactly what to do. She will stay close to the Empress post-birth, watching over her and the baby as she tentatively finds her way. After all, it is with the High Priestess the egg was first fertilised by the Magician, when it was just a collection of cells, caught between its originating spirit world or source, and that of physical manifestation. It is the Empress who brings it to full life, but not without the assistance of the High Priestess, the baby’s divine mother.

Exploring The Many Faces Of The High Priestess – Tarot Decks and Tarot Art


In addition to the detailed interpretations provided for the High Priestess both Upright and Reversed, I have spent time selecting some wonderful versions of the High Priestess from several decks or artist’s interpretations. Where they are available to purchase through Amazon or Creator’s Websites, I have provided links. Not all cards are for sale. Some are works of art, the artist’s personal interpretation of the Major Arcana’s High Priestess. Many of these can be purchased as prints. Some artists offer the originals for sale too. Other High Priestess art-work is available only for viewing, and where I could source them, provided links to their work, many of which can be found on Deviant Art. Some of these artists have other tarot cards to view in their collections and you can leave comments or ask questions. They are well worth checking out.

Food For Thought

There is truly something for every one here and I hope my interpretations will provide food for thought whether you agree with them or not. All I ask is that you open your mind to the many possibilities offered by the High Priestess. I did not intend to write so prolifically about the High Priestess. She was to resemble the previous two cards in this series, The Fool and Magician. Somehow I got carried away and decided to run with it. It did take considerable time to compile, and has thrown my writing schedule to the wind as a result. Sometimes you’ve just got to go with the flow. I cannot guarantee I will do the same with further cards in this series. To keep a balance, I will pare down this article to one-liners and brief interpretations so as to keep it similar to the previous two. I will make both versions available.

I think you will enjoy exploring the  numerous versions of the High Priestess  through the superb artwork and extensive interpretation provided.

The High Priestess – Relationship, Love & Sex Interpretations Article Has Moved To It’s Own Page – Here


The High Priestess – Relationships, Love & Sex Associatons

The Fool – Relationships, Love & Sex Associations

The Magician – Relationships, Love & Sex Associations

Wands – Love, Romance & Relationship Associations

Cups – Love, Romance & Relationship Associations

Swords – Love, Romance & Relationship Associations

Pentacles – Love, Romance & Relationship Associations


3 replies »

  1. Thank you so much for your wonderful blog<3. You have no idea how much your blog has taught me. I love it so much that I have either sold or given away many of the tarot books I have collected over the years due to this being such a wonderful resource. PLEASE IGNORE THE HATERS! I find it so ridiculous that they are actually e-mailing you personally to say that you are wrong. No they are wrong. Every tarot reader has their own meanings for their cards. Sure there are traditional meanings but overtime one builds upon them or even sometimes gets rid of them all together. I think during these modern times we need to have more modern meanings for our cards in order to best deal with our daily lives and help whoever comes to us in a reading. Sure keeping up with traditions are important but not when they can limit one's viewpoint. I personally like to have very lengthy meanings for each of my cards and not have only one strict meaning. I can't wait for more of your next love and sex associations for your cards. I also can't wait (if you are still working on this project) for any more updates on your love and relationships ebooks. I plan on buying the WHOLE series once you complete them all. I am sure it will be a wonderful resource for my tarot studies<3.


    • Hi Natalia,

      Gosh, what a wonderfully supportive message. You have no idea how much I appreciate your kinds words and positive feedback. It can be quite isolating standing in my back bedroom typing all day, cut off the world outside, and trying to stay warm in our damp cold Irish winter. You should see the state of me at present. I work at a standing desk as I have developed problems from sitting too long at computers. I am very sensitive to the cold, so unless I am moving around and physically active, I get cold, even when the heating is on. My body temperature drops and my fingers get so stiff I cannot type. So, at this stage of the year, I wear layers, and lots of them. To keep warm and avoid hypothermia, I wear a woolly hat, scarf and fingerless gloves while typing. I also have a hot water bottle on my back to keep my spine warm. My partner, god bless him, thinks this is cute! I fly into a panic when the doorbell goes, petrified should anyone see me looking so wild and possibly batty! Anyway, I throw out my writing to the world and never quite know if it is of use to anyone. So, getting your comment has made my weekend for me. I am also happy to hear that others share my views about tarot and I think the wonderful selection of High Priestess images spice up her look and give a whole new twist on her.

      With regards to the Tarot Books of Love, yes I will be doing more. I have part of the Six of Wands complete. The writing gets so intense, I sometimes need to take a break from a certain topic just to unwind. I have being working on completing the re-working of The Emperor in the last while and will finish it off early next week. Then I move on to the Hierophant to re-work him. Next week I will also be working on The Empress – Relationships, Love and Sex Associations. It won’t be as in-depth as the High Priestess but, I could return to these cards again at a future date to expand on them. That should take me up to mid-December. Then, I will be returning to the Six of Wands Book of Love with the view to having that completed by early to mid January.

      In the middle of all this, my daughter is due her first baby, my first grandchild! She is type 1 diabetic so they are talking about taking her in two weeks prior to her due date, which if they do, will be the 4th of December. She is a doctor in a large hospital in Dublin, involved in Clinical Research. She finished up work today and is now on maternity leave for 6 months. She is having a girl and I have asked to be called Bibi instead of granny or nana. My name is Vivien and in Irish it is Beibhinn (Bev/Bey-v/een). Most little kids can’t pronounce V until they are older and usually call me Bibi, so I think it is a good one as it incorporates both the Irish and English version of my name. It will be pronounced BeeBee. My sister has a grandchild too and she is referred to as Bunny! We are weird.

      Thank you again Natalia and I hope you have a wonderful weekend.




      • WOW Vivien! Hearing your writing process and all that you go through really makes me appreciate you and your blog even more. I really am grateful for all of the wonderful information you have generously shared with a bunch of strangers on the internet. To then hear that people are criticizing you and your approach to tarot is really upsetting. I don’t know how you do it. I would have thrown in the towel honestly and tell everyone to take a hike! I understand where you are coming from with having issues standing for long periods of time. My father too had to request for his job to give him a standing desk because the poor man suffers from a lot of back pain. No matter how many specialists and doctors he has seen he just can’t get rid of the pain. I always have to remind him to also take walks around the office during his break or to visit the local park because studies have shown recently that sitting for long periods of time is very bad for your health. Yet that is something that we all do constantly whether at work, typing in an office desk at home, or even doing homework or studying.

        On a more happier note, congratulations to you and your family on your grandchild! :D. I think the name you have requested for her to call you is very cute and I am sure you can’t wait to hold that little bundle of joy in your arms :).

        I absolutely loved the addition of the different image cards in the post. I agree that it helped visualize her many shades of meaning. Especially because for me the High Priestess card has always been like the “perfect” woman card for me in the deck (not the Empress). I especially loved the High Priestess from the Yoshitaka Amano Tarot. As a person who resonates deeply with Japanese art I definitely felt a call to that card. I am going to search extensively on the internet to see if I find the deck anywhere! :). Excitedly waiting for your next post!!!! :).


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