This is the fourth post of the Astrology of the Major Arcana series, in which we will delve into the astrological associations of the tarot. In the first post, we briefly reviewed all of the rulerships of the Majors. Then, we tooked a look at The Emperor & Aries; followed by an analysis of The Hierophant & Taurus. Next: The Chariot & Cancer.
The Lovers is the sixth card of the Major Arcana of tarot. Classically depicting, in the Smith Waite tradition, a couple of humans protected by an angel in paradise, this card’s meanings often speak of choices, romance, love, relationship, and harmony. Astrologically, it is ruled by the third zodiac sign: the celestial twins, Gemini. Gemini and Geminians are described as curious, inquisitive, intellectual, sharp; but also two-toned, vacillating, flip-flopping and owning multiple personalities. As someone with a moon in Gemini, I agree! However, what in Hades has any of that have to do with The Lovers card?
Let’s briefly explore the mythological history of Gemini. In ancient Greek lore, the cosmic twins were Castor and Pollux, the children of Zeus or Jupiter. Interestingly, Jupiter is the ruling planet of Sagittarius, which is Gemini’s polarity—but I digress. One of the twins, Pollux, was the actual child of Zeus, while Castor was the child of Tyndareus, king of Sparta, their mother’s husband. (Zeus had been sneaky, wink wink.) Following a clash during one of the twins’ many heroic adventures, Castor was killed. Pollux, who was immortal, shared his immortality with his brother. They then alternated cashing in on Pollux’s sweet, sweet immortality and switched daily between being dead and alive—between Hades and Mt. Olympus. Thus, the twins are connected both to Heaven and Hell, to both life and death, to both the world and the underworld.
The archetype of the divine twins reveals our inherent dualities as both mortal and immortal—of the earth but transcending it. It speaks to our relationship as temporary creatures that are part of, and extensions of, a “permanent” Universe. This myth speaks directly to our awakening as individual specs existing in relation to a greater Cosmos.
Let’s place Gemini in the evolutionary context of creation. Whereas in Aries, Spirit springs into existence as the primordial burst of life; and whereas in Taurus that same Spirit crystallizes into matter as manifest reality; in Gemini, Spirit incarnate as the individual awakens to the world around it. The eventual death of this temporary spec becomes chillingly real. Moreover, the soul, as an individualized manifestation of Spirit, in Gemini discovers that it is not, in fact, the only particle in existence. There are other individuals like itself in the world. The existence of relationships and relations become known.
There is so much curiosity here, like when children start to discover the world through more complex concepts and terms. There are so many questions to be asked and things to be understood. There is learning how to communicate and how to relate—how to exist in harmony with other individuations of Spirit like themselves. These divine twins are curious and thirsty for knowledge. After all, the part of Spirit that incarnates in this world purposefully forgets Who They Are, so there is much to re-learn, there is a whole universe to remember.
The divine twins in their innocence are imbued with primordial love, and when they encounter the Other, the other spirit particles floating in this world, they love it. They relate to it. Castor and Pollux were the protector demigods of friendship in ancient times, it is no wonder. The Lovers card speaks partly to partnership and coming together, whether it is for a romantic relationship, an enduring friendship, or for a creative project.
Most importantly, however, Gemini relates to The Lovers through the idea of twinning, or mirroring. The archetype of the twin is about looking at oneself through a mirror. When we draw The Lovers, we are being invited to look at our lives, our circumstances, our relationships, and the whole Universe as a reflection of ourselves. Through examining the mirror, we can prepare to make choices that are the highest alignment with our soul’s path.
The Lovers is traditionally ascribed meanings such as choice, decisions, and differing pathways. In evolutionary tarot, we take in and invoke the wisdom of the Cosmos to make aligned choices for our lives. We look around curiously, and with taste for knowledge. We take note ofanything that feels out of alignment, and we see if anything within ourselves has precipitated that circumstance. With my next step, can I make a higher decision instead? At every moment, we can choose again, returning to the path of love, of growth, of listening to the inner knowing and of walking the trails of our evolution.
Going even deeper in this metaphor, The Lovers/Gemini is when we see the glory and the beauty of the Universe as a reflection of our own inner radiance. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, after all. Through this practice, we see our very life in the life of the stars, we see our own fragility in a leaf that falls and decays, we witness our own breathing in the dance of expansion and contraction that is present everywhere.
When you truly love someone, if feels like your soul is touching your own spirit through the heart of another. Their beauty is your beauty. Their smile is your smile. Their pulse beats with your own blood. Through The Lovers, our awareness expands outwards and touches all of reality with an inquisitive touch. And then, it collapses back into itself as ultimate Oneness. As we embody the sixth Arcanum, we are aware of the world as a mirror to ourselves. A multitude of ideas, issues, visions… all collapse into the ultimate emptiness within us, and nothing but the most primordial energy is left standing. All that is left is Love.