About the Major Arcana Two,
which I call "Dreamer".
Traditionally Known as "The High Priestess"
The Major Arcana Two signifies the advance to inward knowing: a step up from understanding just physical power to a recognition of the power of the psyche. Intuition and inner wisdom come into play. A knowledge and ability is attained that arise from receptivity, from listening to the body, from patience and self-reflection. This is a seeing with the Inner Eye - what The Magician (Power) knows with his gut by the Light of the Fire, The High Priestess (Dreamer) knows with her womb and her heart, in the Dark. For me, dreams are one of the most important aspects of inner knowing: other deeper layers of our psyches communicate with the conscious via dreams (if we will just pay attention to and acknowledge them!), and for me Dreamer is the perfect designation for this card. It is a symbolic representation of the stereotypical situation we've all heard about where someone 'has a feeling' about something; they dream about it, and then it comes to be. In a reading the Dreamer card signifies intuition over intellect: following feelings and signals from the body/psyche is more appropriate in this situation than overthinking and straining to figure something out with the mind. Open to your dreams: they probably have a message for you! The energy of this card is Yin (female), and is associated with the fluid, mutable element Water. The card is associated with menses and this is significant not only due to the Moon connection, but because many women experience their strongest, most well-remembered dreams during their periods. Symbols esoterically associated with this card are night, the Moon, a bird (representing the psyche in flight outside the physical body), and the color blue. Traditionally the card contains a Moon and blue water as well as blue garments for the female Priestess figure. She sits between 2 pillars, one light and one dark, which represent the duality of inner and outer worlds, and holds a scroll or book which represents knowledge and esoteric wisdom. Three pomegranates are displayed behind the Priestess and signify a connection to Goddess Persephone, who spent one half of the year in the Light, and one half in the dark Underworld. The traditional image may remind many of certain depictions of Mary, in blue and white robes, with the Moon at her feet. And indeed there is a connection. The Dreamer/Priestess is all things to all people: to followers of the Old Religion she is the Eternal Feminine Goddess, to Christians she is the Mediator between God's feminine side and mankind. This card is ruled by the Moon, and is connected to the Zodiacal sign Cancer, although the card ruled by that sign is Major Arcana 18, The Moon - so there is a cross-connection here and the power of the Moon is very strong related to both these cards, and they are both connected to esoteric and psychic activity.
The High Priestess/Dreamer Reversed
A reversed Priestess/Dreamer card in a Tarot reading usually is saying that you just can't stop thinking! And over thinking! But the more you think and try to figure out whatever it is you're trying to figure out, the less you know! Intuition and natural insight must somehow be activated and brought into use here, although that is the last thing many people are willing to do these days! It's just not what we do here in the 21st century! But we need to get back to it, and if you can let go and quiet the conscious mind, an 'Ah HA!' experience will probably occur in which the answer suddenly becomes apparent. If not, "sleeping on" the problem is in order: a dream can yield the answers you seek!
Notes on the Artwork
All the paintings I am doing for this deck are the same media and format: 11" x 15"; acrylic paint, ink and prismacolor pencil on illustration board. I have always known about how I wanted this card image to look, and in fact have painted a similar scene before, as I had with the Magician. My scene accentuates the blue, the Moon and the Water, and the idea of self-reflection - this woman is asleep AND studying her reflection - this is a dream-image. The idea behind the 2 pillars is one I feel it is important to retain and here they are, along with the pomegranates. The bird is an owl, one symbolic itself of wisdom. This is a simple scene which illustrates a simple but powerful concept.
Questions or comments about my art and Tarot are always welcome! eMail me at: