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The Meaning of
the "Six of Pentacles" Tarot Card

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What is the inverted meaning of
the "Six of Pentacles"?

The Meaning of the "Six of Pentacles"
Tarot Card


The Symbolism of the Six of Pentacles

The Six of Pentacles is the card of charity.

A well-dressed man in a heavy red cloak and a striped tunic, tosses coins to beggars. In the man's other hand, he holds a set of scales which are at rest in their balanced, equitable state.

At the man's feet, two beggars kneel with hands outstretched, catching the coins being tossed their way. Their clothes are tattered, and the man on the left of the card appears to have sustained a head injury.

The man selflessly shares his fortune with those less fortunate, while at the same time the beggars show sincere gratitude and respect.

Floating in the air, and framing the top of the card are six pentacles. The pentacles are notably imbalanced, with more on the left side of the card than the right side — suggesting inequality.

A spiritual and moral balance is achieved as this charitable donation is made

The presence of the scales in their balanced state indicates that despite the inequality which exists in the world, a personal moral balance is possible through acts of giving.

NOTE: Observant students of Tarot will notice that the scales used in the Six of Pentacles are identical to the scales used in the Major Arcana Justice card. This mirroring is intentional, and illustrates the difference between the Major and Minor arcana very well: The Justice card references a grand moral balance enforced at a universal level, while the Six of Pentacles references a more personal moral balance achieved at a smaller, individual level.


How to Interpret the Six of Pentacles

On the surface level, the Six of Pentacles reminds us of the importance of charity and giving to those less fortunate. But that meaning is probably too narrow for most tarot readings.

In most cases, the Six of Pentacles references a far more general type of giving: It might represent helping someone at work, taking on an unpaid task of some kind, taking time out to help children or relatives, or simply being a good listener and giving someone your time.

Balance is achieved through small daily actions in which we must give as well as take.

The Six of Pentacles is a gentle reminder that we are all part of one consistent and balanced universe. Balance is achieved through small daily actions in which we must give as well as take.

Satisfaction and success are not just one way streets. They are the result of an interplay of generosity and selflessness — and thousands of small, immeasurable actions.

The Six of Pentacles also reminds us of our own good fortune. The tables of fortune could easily be turned. Our daily micro acts of benevolence are a concession that we owe the universe a debt of gratitude for everything that we are.


The Six of Pentacles Inverted

The reversed Six of Pentacles reminds us that while selflessness and generosity are good things, there's a point at which we can over-extend ourselves. We all know what it's like to pass the tipping-point and give too much of ourselves — or to bite off more than we can chew.

The card is typically an indication that giving of one's self may have, at least temporarily, gone too far.

It's also possible that a recipient of generosity may not have displayed enough gratitude for a helping hand, or sufficiently reciprocated a gift.

At the very simplest level, the reversed Six of Pentacles may reference someone who forgot to say "Thank you".

It's often a sign that the scales of equity have started to tip too far in the other direction somehow.

When the inverted Six of Pentacles appears in a reading it's often a sign that the scales of equity have started to tip too far in the other direction somehow.

No matter how generous, selfless and giving someone is, "me time" is also important. And after a long period of giving, it's nice for all that selflessness to be acknowledged somehow.

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