The High Priestess
Tarot Card Meaning
High Priestess Universal Rider Waite
Wizards Tarot by Corrine Kenner
The Priestess of the Silver Star
Astrological Association: Cancer
Hebrew Letter: Gimel
Color: Blue, Silver
Musical Note: G-Sharp, A-Flat
“I am all that has been, that is, and that will be. No mortal has been able to lift the veil which covers me.”
-Temple of Sais, Egyptian Goddess Nuit
High Priestess Description and Symbolism
A woman sits calmly between too pillars of contrasting colors of black and white, which represent the ying and yang of universal laws. She holds a book with the words Tora on it, which maybe the ancient Torah book or it is the rearranged word Tarot. She guards the secrets to the book by not revealing the full title. Torah is also the ancient word for teacher.
Her scrolls contain all the written and subconscious memories of everyone and everything. She lets us know that nothing is forgotten and everything is recorded. Your subconscious never forgets. Written and oral messages may come through her to you.
She is sitting very still between two contrasting pillars. She represents the number two, which means duplicity. Duplicity conveys the idea of two opposites, which are really part of the whole. Light and Darkness. Waning and Waxing. Full and New.
Her stillness denotes patience and meditation. These are passive and non-receptive qualities and yet her gown is supposed to flow into watery waves. Even though she seems passive inside her she moves, cyclically to the moon. She is always adjusting to the rhythms and flows of the moon. She is the push and the pull. She also represents the idea of water as a subconscious function. There is also a repetition to the movement of the tides. And if you surrender to your subconscious tides, you will be more connected to the conscious of them all.
When I was a child we lived by the ocean. I would allow the waves to pull me under and wash me to the shore. I would do this over and over again. I would allow the water to flow through me. I would acknowledge what my uncle told me about my body being 75% water. I would telepathically speak to the water and let it know that I acknowledged that we were really the same and then I would let go. I would become to wave. I would never fight the water. And then, of course, I would repeat. I would do this over and over again until the memories of the ocean swam inside my body. My body, which was mostly water, would exchange my subconscious memories. This is how I learned to float too. I would realize that I was the same as water. And I would obey the rhythmic flow, the push and pull. This is the High Priestess. By remaining passive, calm and seemingly still, I allowed the water and waves to become one with my body.
Behind her is a veil, which she only reveals to those who are ready. The veil is delicately embroidered with pomegranates. These pomegranates represent the high priestess’ divine female energy, the fertility of life itself, and a ying harmony. The Yang, or masculine energies is represented in the palm trees. The High Priestess represents all dualities and shows us that it is all the same because one cannot exist without the other.
Mythologically the High Priestess represents Diana, the Virgin. She is also symbolic of the Virgin Mary, the incubator of a higher level of consciousness. The Virgin Mary is actually archetype of Isis, the creator mother who resurrected her brother to create a new life (we also see the culmination of this union in the Judgement Tarot card.
Her crown is one of the ancient Celtic symbols for the cyclic nature of the female: Daughter, Mother, Grandmother. The cross she wears looks much more like an X than a crucification device. It looks like if folded at the base of the cross it would fit perfectly into the circle, which is another cycle, or perhaps the flower of life or another Celtic cross. I’m positive if we meditation with the High Priestess, she will tell us the answer. While I was at the beach in May of 2017, I slipped into the High Priestess card and became the High Priestess. I believe the cross is more than what I originally written, but can you find the answer? (Meditated on with her. You can do this with all cards! I started with the Moon, so I could reclaim my natal Moon.)
A crescent moon lies at her feet because the moon serves her and she controls the ebb and flow. The High Priestess is connected to the Moon, which affects female cyclical menstruation. Menstruation contains massive amounts of energy. When the High Priestess lets you beyond the veil, you can learn how to use this energy of menstruation to further your chi. There is no reason to expend this menstruation every month. When the High Priestess realizes you are ready, she can show you that you can pull this dense sexual energy from the second chakra up your body.
The tides lie behind her and the space between the veil are part of the astral world. The sky and the sea meet one another and on some level you cannot tell them apart. If you are someone like me and have terrible vision, you’ll know what I mean. I am neither far-sided nor near-sided because I cannot see either close nor far without my glasses. Everything is a blurry mess and the further I look the more blurred things are. The colors all blend together. I cannot tell where a window is from a brick building 700 yards away because it looks all brick and red. I cannot tell the difference between the where the sea meets the sky. To me they look the same. When I see with my natural eyes most things merge and blend into one another. I was asked if I wanted to do laser eye surgery to “correct” my vision. I replied, “There is nothing wrong with my vision. I see the world the way it is, with everything ultimately connected. I wouldn’t know who I was if I didn’t have the divine gift of seeing with and without my glasses.” My eye doctor said, “I don’t think I’ve ever had anyone say that….” I suppose not.
I always had poor vision even as a child, it was only when I realized that I couldn’t read a chalk board that I was told to get glasses. This was how I learned to read people and their energies. Sometimes when we think we are unfortunate in one area, it turns out we are building a gift. I was building the gift of understand the world and its connectedness. I learned to read people and their aura. To this day, when I meet someone I am never looking at their face. I am looking into their soul. Whenever I meet them again, I am usually in “normal” mode and I’ve forgotten all about their face. It’s fun to meet people twice. This is a gift of the High Priestess because without my ability to merge the colors around me, I wouldn’t have been able to start reading energy. A soul is an important thing to be able to read. It keeps me out of dangerous situation.
Her robes are colored white for purity and blue for thought and psychic ability. White is also a color of psychic ability. What other colors do you see?
High Priestess Interpretation and Divination
The High Priestess is the keeper of all knowledge that is hidden. It is esoteric knowledge. She is your intuition and guide. She is the consort of the Hierophant and the magical feminine of the Magician. She relates to the Hermit through his activity, and talks directly with the Queen of Cups. Her planet is the moon, but I’ve always related Neptune to her. Neptune is the blue gas planet that a soul goes to receive psychic information and knowledge. This Priestess is connected to Neptune. If you look closely you’ll see her trident. **Please note that this is my own person interpretation. There are many schools of thought out there all originating from a Rosicrucian order, ie, the Golden Dawn, The Builders of the Adytum. This idea of her related to Neptune is from my own imagination. It is not related nor practiced in any magic school that I know of.
She comes after the Magician, who has all the tool to succeed. The High Priestess has the answers, if you only listen for them. She has ancient scrolls and when the Fool asks for them she quietly and without words gives him the information. She never hands them over to the Fool. She gives them when he is ready. The information that she has is beyond words. The High Priestess urges you to follow your intuition.
The High Priestess in Love
The High Priestess in love can represent an unattainable woman, after all, she’s a representation of Diana, the Virgin. She could possibly be a woman who you will have an affair with. It is possible that you may never know this woman completely because she is bound to herself and to knowledge. Her twin flame inside of her burns eternally and you can never truly possess her. If she represents a person, she is usually a woman.
The High Priestess is a woman that can stand on her own two feet. She is bound by no man. She has her choice of men and will only be involved with one when she feels like it. She doesn’t feel obligated to get involved with a man if she doesn’t want to. She is a woman who may not feel the pressure, need, or desire for a man.
The High Priestess as Feelings
The High Priestess is all about feelings, for she governs all subconscious thoughts. Her feelings aren’t moody or unresolved. She knows exactly how she feelings and probably how you feel too. She may not reveal this to you. If you are asking, “How does my love interest feel for me?” Then the High Priestess will answer you rhetorically, “You already know. Just ask your dreams.” There is a feeling of psychic connection, a feeling that you and the person probably spent a lifetime together. There is a feeling of aloneness and a feeling that you would rather be alone, but not lonely. She is never lonely.
High Priestess as Advice
The High Priestess advises you to keep to yourself. If you have secrets or someone has told you a secret, keep this to yourself.
As advice the High Priestess also asks you to meditate for a while, pause and reflect. This is a period of germination.
The High Priestess as an Obstacle or Crossing Card
The High Priestess as an obstacle is telling you that your intuition is blocked. Patience is needed at this time. You probably have all the time in the world, but you are insisting on forcing a situation. The High Priestess comes before the temporal world. She doesn’t know what “time” is nor is she depended on it. She knows all will come to those who wait because life and the universe is just a waiting game. We are free from the restrictions of time when we tap into the High Priestess power. Take the time to meditate, while losing time. The answers will only come when you submit to the ethereal world void of earthly time.
On a mundane level, the High Priestess as an obstacle can literally be telling you that a man is blocking you. In our current society, females are not allowed to be a priest. Men must fear women tremendously. Why else have women lived so long being denied power? Did you know that when a woman menstruates, she produces the same hormones a man produces? When a woman stops her flow, her hormones go back to the “normal” level. Yet men use the crazy idea that “women can’t rule because of all those hormones.” Do they mean the hormones that women ONLY produce once a month that mimic a man’s normal hormonal output?
Men have been blocking the priestess for over 1,000 years and the High Priestess might be suggesting that a man is blocking your ascent to power.
The High Priestess as a Career
You may want to spend some more time thinking about what you want to do next. This is not a time to make any sudden moves or changes. From a more person-to-person perspective, you may be interested in moving into the realm of the occult or becoming a professional tarot reader, psychic or medium. Patience is illustrated. You’ll need to be patient and wait for the answers to come to you.
The High Priestess Professions
Medium. Psychic. Psychologist. Communications. Telephone company. Costume designer. Nun. Nurse. Secretary. Accountant. Bookkeeper. Teacher. Historian, especially ancient. History Teacher. Serious Print Journalist.
The High Priestess Reversed
The High Priestess Reversed may cause your heart to break.
The High Priestess Reversed may indicate that you are not listening to your intuition. You need time to reflect and listen to the wind and the moon. If the card represents a woman, which it normally does, she is a jealous woman whose intuitive abilities are used like swords to hurt you. She conceals and lies. She may have a drug or alcohol problem, sexual addictions and obsessions.
High Priestess Combinations
High Priestess and Hierophant:
a. Deep faith requires deep secrets
High Priestess and Wheel of Fortune:
a. Could indicate a woman who reads tarot at county fairs.
b. Good fortune and luck for those who are patient.
a. Deep secrets requires deep contemplation
High Priestess and Star:
a. Unrequited love
b. Star crossed love
High Priestess and Moon:
a. There could be some kind of dark magic involved. Be careful and tread lightly.
b. Complete oblivion to your conscious mind.
High Priestess and Judgement:
a. Knowing calming that you are connected to something greater than your physical body.
b. A man rising back into your life that you do not need to complete you. You are in control of this relationship. Will you or won’t you?
c. The sea of subconscious starts with the High Priestess and ends with Judgement. A good combo for tapping into the power of your subconscious and the collective subconscious
High Priestess and 3 of Swords:
a. She grieves quietly.
High Priestess and 4 of Swords:
a. Deep meditation and retreat from a situation
b. She needs time alone to meditate on the secrets to the universe
High Priestess and 6 of Cups:
a. Someone returning from your past (perhaps a past life) who has valuable spiritual lessons to teach you. Or you two need to teach each other.
High Priestess and Knight of Cups:
a. An romantic offer from a man to an unattainable woman, his mistress, or an esoteric teacher.
High Priestess and Four of Pentacles:
a. Holding out on sex
b. Emotionally unavailable
High Priestess and Seven of Swords:
a. Not getting very much work done.
b. Wishing someone else would do it for you.
High Priestess and Queen of Pentacles:
a. This pairing (or any pairing with a queen) can indicate an affair.