Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Three of Wands, RWS and Thoth Tarot Card Meaning

The Three of Wands, RWSThe Three of Wands, Thoth
Meanings Upright, Ill-dignified, and Reversed, rx
Rider Waite Smith, and Thoth

Occult Name: The Lord of Established Strength
Three of Wands in timing: Three days; or from March 31st to April 10th
Qabalah: Binah in Atziluth
Astrological: Sun in Aries
Reading with Playing Cards: Equivalent to the Three of Clubs



The Three of Wands, RWS


The RWS Three of Wands, as expected, moves on to cover the next aspect of what arose in the two. In the ace, a raw energy presented, in the two that energy was manifested into the material plane and initial thought and planning were put into action. Now in the three, we are planning, looking at what could possibly arise as obstacles and are considering how best to avoid them, and so on and so forth. This period of preparation and analysis may include finding the most suitable environment, scouting out the best group of people to carry the project through, and perfecting strategy. The Three of Wands also refers to effective application of strength and will, and to good overall moral standing.



The Three of Wands, Thoth


The lotus wands depicted on the Thoth Three of Wands card, represent Leo's energies of creation, and also power, as their number is three. Three is powerful given its standing in Qabalah, as it represents the supernal triad. The orange coloration speaks of awakening, strength and endurance; also, the heat and energy of the sun, and thereby divinity and creation. Yellow alludes to wisdom, and again, the sun and creation. There are are sixteen flames; sixteen is a reflection of 61, which in gematria encompasses Nothing, as Ain, but also All, as House. Of the sixteen flames, ten are crimson (the color denoting passion and will), six are white (illumination, kindness, and spirituality). Furthermore, sixteen is 4 x 4, which when building structure, will provide a solid foundation.

Ten, the number of the red flames, is the number of perfection; as well it is a building block number, as all great numbers are founded upon it. The numeral six, of the white flames, again alludes to the sun and its harmonious energies.

This card has all the makings of manifestation, success, and fruition. Yet in and of itself it is not success, nor is it manifestation (it is both all and nothing!). In fact, it is as fertilization is to the process of having a child; in this way it contains success within it.


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The Three of Wands Dignified or Upright


  • Represents commerce and enterprise, or any new project; it is a beginning phase.
  • Use strategy, planning, and foresight.
  • A positive card to see in a business related reading - people like what you are doing, and there are no obstacles.
  • Refers to working with any or all of the virtues of strength, charisma, and will.
  • Someone new joins your project, and will fill their role well.  
  • Determined to reach one's ends.
  • Being in charge.
  • An ambitious person.
  • Strong leadership qualities.
  • Weighing up an opportunity available to you.
  • The courage to proceed towards goals and dreams.
  • In reference to sex, refers to endurance and strength.
  • A liaison or go-between.
  • Making a discovery that will aid you in your pursuits.
  • Sharpness of intellect and perception.
  • Gallantry and/or nobility in actions.
  • Taking pride in one's work and other engagements.
  • Sometimes suggests outside input, as it is a three after all.
  • In a time of difficulty, someone is ready, willing, and suitably able to help you.
  • Looking at the big picture.
  • A conference or negotiation.
  • Seeking adventure.
  • Putting out due effort.
  • Courageousness.
  • Flirting.


The Three of Wands Ill Dignified or Reversed


  • Choosing not to cooperate.
  • A failure to follow through.
  • One's goals and dreams open up to them, but they are not responding.
  • Sometimes refers to vices.
  • A takeover, or any means of usurping power.
  • In the past you faltered; now you are being put to the test.
  • From your current standpoint things look confusing and unstable.
  • Avoidance of getting involved.
  • Fear is holding you back.
  • Choosing not to get involved for moral reasons.
  • The end of a period of difficulty in enterprise.
  • Concluding a phase of hard work.
  • A troubling issue is now over.
  • Not having the strength to continue.
  • A period of rest.
  • Termination of a project or venture. 
  • Negative input or interference.
  • A come and go approach - at times committed, and other times not.
  • Lacking a reasonable degree of discretion.
  • Moving ahead despite reservations, but knowing to remain aware.
  • Don't proceed yet, you need to gather more resources or information.
  • With multiple approaches available, upon facing failure, try another.
  • Certain vices are tempting you.
  • Lacking modesty.
  • Demonstrating disrespect.
  • Stubbornness.
  • Resistance.


Illustrations from the Rider-Waite Tarot Deck®, known also as the Rider Tarot and the Waite Tarot, reproduced by permission of U.S. Games Systems, Inc., Stamford, CT 06902 USA. Copyright ©1971 by U.S. Games Systems, Inc. Further reproduction prohibited. The Rider-Waite Tarot Deck® is a registered trademark of U.S. Games Systems, Inc.

RWS image is a Wikimedia file from a 1909 deck originally scanned by Holly Voley http://home.comcast.net/~vilex/

Thoth image copyright (c) US Games Systems Inc.; AGMuller; O.T.O.

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