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Unpacking the Tarot - The High Priestess

Unpacking the Tarot - The High Priestess

The Tarot have been used for centuries to predict the future and answer our deepest questions. The traditional deck contains 78 cards—the 22 Major Arcana cards and 56 Minor Arcana cards.
While the Minor Arcana can help shed light on the actions and decisions we make every day, the Major Arcana helps us understand our life’s purpose. Each card represents situations we face throughout our journey and the lessons we all must learn.
Here is a closer look at the third card in the deck, the High Priestess.


The High Priestess comes to teach us. She brings wisdom, intuition and the ability to tap into the subconscious mind and access hidden knowledge. Her presence suggests the thinning of the veil between the earth and a higher spiritual plane. Be prepared to open your mind and let yourself learn.


The High Priestess is dressed in a blue robe adorned with a cross on her chest and a horned crown atop her head, symbols of her knowledge and power. She holds a scroll, which is partly hidden for the knowledge she holds has not yet been entirely revealed. At her feet is a crescent moon, a sign of intuition and femininity. 

The High Priestess sits before a veil, the curtain between spiritual realms. The veil is usually decorated with pomegranates, a fruit that symbolizes fertility and abundance. She sits between a black pillar and a white pillar, which represent the duality of life—light and dark, feminine and masculine, seen an unseen. 


When the High Priestess appears in a reading, there is much to learn. If you are on a spiritual journey, she can be a sign of encouragement to recommit to your practice or continue on your path. Embrace her appearance as a time of heightened intuition and the strengthening of psychic abilities. Now is the time to unlock hidden insights and reach a deeper plane of existence. 

The High Priestess may also indicate that you need to prioritize self-care. You will struggle to find satisfaction and inner freedom if you fail to treat yourself properly. It’s time to put your psychical and mental well-being first.

If the High Priestess appears in reverse, you are advised to spend some time in quiet introspection. You may find yourself under the influence of others and uncertain about your own wants and needs. Carve out some time to be alone with yourself and focus on listening to your inner voice.  
*This article is based on the popular Rider-Waite Tarot card deck. If you’re using a different deck, cards may be numbered differently and feature different images. That’s ok. It’s the name of the card and the meaning that matters.