Four of Cups – A Gift From Heaven

Your will is dissipated and your mind is distracted from its true goal.

The Four of Cups refers to a restless time, where a person may have become dissatisfied with life, and emotionally uncomfortable. Feeling stagnated, longing for change, the heart ponders its options as it should. Life circumstances have brought you to a standstill. You need to take a course of actions to harmonize what you desire with what is currently possible. Look at yourself and see why you have become so distracted. You have been put down by negativity, hopelessness or a sense of limitation. You see the world through a very narrow lens. Cut through the forces that undermine you, causing you to feel incapable. Sometimes you have to determine what you are “for” by defining what you are “against.” Now is the time to be as aroused as a cup of fire. This arousal may constitute liberation from the circumstances that may have brought you here.

Four of cups is a card of never-materialized hopes. A person feels like a broken barrel organ, thinking about the same old and unable not get rid of these intrusive thoughts. The situation of Four of Cups is a state of compulsion, dependence and a victim position. This is a very uncomfortable situation. Usually a person is looking for a way out of difficult situation and could not find it. A person will be happy not to think about it, but nothing constructive comes to mind to fix it, only an exhausting force. It is easier for a person to run in circles (looking for his mistake or guilt) than to change his view on the universe

General Meaning

A person does not notice changes and is looking into the past. A negative view on the world keeps a person from achieving what he needs and hopes. Everything is available, but his own dissatisfaction keeps him from accepting and using benefits. A person is lacking a spiritual position worthy of rejoice. Seven of Cups heralds the beginning of a period of stagnation in life. A person rejects new opportunities, does not want to develop creativity, or start new projects, or to make new acquaintances (everything seems meaningless). It is vital to think about impending emotional challenges. A person needs an honest self-examination to restore internal balance, and to make efforts to see life differently than just boring and dull. It’s a small effort, but a person needs to do it himself.

Vintage interpretations of Four of Cups include longing and boredom, dissatisfaction, unreasonable suspicions, imaginary disappointment, disgust. Four of Cups is an internal “burn” after excessive socialization. One of the names of Four of Cups is “morning after merry night”, with all its apathy and lethargy with no continuation of a banquet. There is a negative impact of the past on the present. Something is clearly overdone.

More rare interpretation of Four of Cups is a gift from heaven. Yes, gift of fortune, with her kindness and giving, which makes a person worry and confusion; a person can not understand his feelings. In essence, it is a really achievable goal, which is not perceived by a person seriously.

Allister Crowley’s sees a positive side of Four of Cups which is luxury. Pleasant pastime in a nice and familiar atmosphere with a sense of security and stability, enjoyment of life and a chance to relax.

Personal Feelings

You kind of got what you always wanted (relationship, money, good career, stability), but feel mostly boredom, apathy and discontent. You are no longer happy with your toys. Four of Cups recalls the impermanence of our senses: we sincerely wish for something, but reaching it, suddenly realize that we do not need now.

We face an authentic emotion spectrum, up to passive-depressive state. The role of a martyr goes on a second plan, a person is nurturing his dim pain, his lack of believe in himself, and he is losing a meaning of his life. Discouragement after a period of prosperity and initial achievements. “I am sick and tired.” Unreasoning apathy, motivation deficits, rejection of reality (“everything is fine, but I do not need anything”), feeling dissatisfied, unhappy. A state of a capricious diva. A person is unhappy without a cause.

Four of Cups is a card of emotional crisis, a specific frustrated mental state, when all existing has been exhausted, to the bottom and caused frustration and dissatisfaction, because was unable to meet the demands of the soul. Selfishness, emotional callousness, alienation. Preoccupation with oneself and complete a detachment from the world. A person is crying, “Nobody loves me!” A reasonable objection is, “You do not notice anybody!”. The apathy and passivity. The world has become essentially indifferent for a person.

Four of Cups always points to complexities with emotional disclosure. Similar to a sign of Cancer, a person got out of his shell, was once again wounded and crawled back. If a person has a strong  Moon and Saturn in a horoscope, Four of Cups is especially pronounced. Four of Cups is a card of loneliness.

A person escapes in a condition of an offended-for-all child  – and not going to do anything … This petty state of a person can make a big folly, and miss a favorable opportunity or suggestion.

Crowley emphasizes Four of Cups on development of femininity and maternal emotion, importance of a home, affection and security, which also corresponds to the sign of Cancer. Yet the natural state of water is movement. Four of Cups limits water to flow and makes it “stagnant.”

On A Deeper Level

Four of Cups is a first existential frustration in an earthly life and its pleasures. After his experiences and successes, joys and achievements, a person catches the feeling of melancholy. We can imagine Buddha meditating under a tree.

In ideal interpretation, this card can be a prophetic discovery struck by lightning, yet a person does not believe it is happening.  Life is transmitted as an inexhaustible source of feelings, and their endless stream allows a person to feel the continuity and eternity of life. Four of Cups carries the idea of unknown possibilities, hidden in the depths of life itself, which should be seen and understood.

Light and Shadow

Advice: Open your eyes and see what fate presents you as a gift. Look at world around yourself and try to see a full meaning in everyday’s life. You need to accept someone’s generous gift or best offer. “Despite your fatigue, depression, aversion, disgust, disappointment and lack of happiness – just remember, all of this is contrived, and is a fruit of your imagination. Look for the signs, dreams, and insights. Accept gifts, not to reject the favorable chances.

Crowley suggests not to force things, relax, do not take close to a heart events, and not try to solve problems that can wait until tomorrow.

Trap: reject heaven proposal, if at first this proposal aroused mixed feelings. Blindness to the opportunity. Stop sulking,  listen to what others have to say, otherwise you will regret later. You need to move away from the dreams and get back into reality with its concerns.

Personal Relations

Four of Cups is a card “of bachelors and spinsters,” ie, people who permanently lay their marriage because of their own mental attitude and refusal to receive gifts from their destiny.

All occurs because of their own unwillingness to accept the proposed goods or benefits. People unconsciously so persistent in their apathy, lack of initiative and discontent that fail to fulfill their desires. This is the warning – “You do not see the gift right before our eyes.” Or do not you know his happiness. The cause of depression that a person does not do anything. Everything in life is interesting only as you are interesting yourself.

It also could be preoccupation with relationship because of which a person does not notice interesting new projects or activities. With Four of Cups, a person can feel resentment, anger, rebellion in the best feelings of his injured innocence. But most acute pain “gets” the Five of Cups.  Four of Cups suffers not so much from a pain as from a lack of motivation.

When it comes to existing relationships, Four of Cups can notify boredom, lack of experience, change, and qualitative development. This is the first crisis when relationship must be “somehow developed” because their beautiful voyage is standing. One of the partners is preoccupied with melancholy and isolation from the world;  and he feels indifferent towards the feelings of others, when a partner is in unreasonably a bad mood and unable to be happy. This could be a turning point in relationship, when it comes time to open a new depth and to move to a qualitatively new level. But it may be another emotional reason for this complicated situation.

The need for diversity for a person is as natural as a need for stability. Without periodic shocks and changing impressions, a person feels boredom and frustration. So there is a need for something fresh and extreme to make a wake up call.

Crowley sees a positive influence is Four of Cups – such as familiar pastime, tenderness and care in a relationship, a sense of stability and security. Crowley interpretation is noticeably different from the conventional. He believes that the Four of Cups describes things that are quite favorable for a good relationship — richness and depth of feeling, stability, emotional intensity, and affection. There is pleasure and enjoyment, and no room for boredom. Yet Crowley writes a desire to possess restricting another person’s capabilities through excessive attachment. But Crowley also points out that while enjoying inner peace and happiness, it is important not to forget about the further development of relations.

Reversed Four of Cups

A person cannot sit and do nothing any more. He or she needs fresh impressions. The search for new stimuli to life against the backdrop of the exhaustion of previous experience. Second wind.N Now a person is trying to solve his or her problems. It also suggests that some unexpected event is coming.

The ancient interpretation – a person will reach a mutual understanding with the loved one. Anticipation, prediction, prediction of changes for the better, all kinds of signs and prophecies.

However, there is also a negative interpretation of the Four of Cups Reversed – if a direct card offers a chance that a person did not notice, but now it represents missed chance, and a person falls into acute depression.

It could be a sign of a false optimism: a person is happy with what he has. He seemed to be trying to persuade himself that he is doing really well. He tries to reassure himself that other people are in much worse situation than he or she is. This persuasion gives a person a temporary calm, after some time the same thoughts again spinning in his head.

Card Combinations

With Hermit – introversion

With Moon – silence, unwillingness to share feelings and thoughts

With Reversed Sun – presence on the fire (from ancient interpreters)

With World – the involvement in something, participation (reduces negative impact of Four of Cups)

With Four of Wands – excitement, energy

With Ten of Wands – enhanced importance of the work, too much work

With Two of Cups – unity, a way out of the shell

With Four of Swords – enhanced importance of contemplation and introspection, meditation and solitude, healing emotional wounds (loneliness as well).

With Five of Swords – dreaming alone

With the Six of Swords – depression

With Eight of pentacles – work helps to overcome inertia and lethargy


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