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Four of Cups Meaning - Tarot Card Meanings

By Tina Gong


Four of Cups Keywords

Upright Keywords Reversed Keywords
apathy, contemplation, feeling disconnected, melancholy, boredom, indifference, discontent clarity, awareness, acceptance, choosing happiness, depression, negativity
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Four of Cups Meaning - Original Rider Waite Tarot Depiction

Four of Cups Tarot Card Description

The Four of Cups displays a young man sitting under a tree on a mountaintop, far from others. He seems to be in contemplation and meditation. In front of him are three cups laying on the grass while another cup is being offered to him by a hand in the air. The man has crossed his hand and legs, and he is looking down at the three cups, unimpressed, such that he cannot see the cup being presented to him by the stretched arm.

The Four of Cups represents our tendency to take for granted the things that we have, making it hard for us to see what treasures the universe presents us with. We tend to have the answers to our troubles right around us, but we tend to focus too much on what we do not have.

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Upright Four of Cups Meaning

The Four of Cups tend to appear when you are feeling discouraged and unmotivated. You may feel as if there is no solution or way forward in your situation. Life has become stagnant, and nothing seems to make you happy or passionate. You are feeling apathetic - regardless of what happens, whether the day is good or bad, none of it matters to you. The Four of Cups commands a self-evaluation of your attitude so that you can pull yourself out of this rut. The solution is likely right in front of you, the hand is offering you a way out, but you release yourself out of your mental stubbornness and deploy new approach.

You are feeling apathetic - regardless of what happens, whether the day is good or bad, none of it matters to you.

You must search your motives, instincts and thoughts so that you can find your passion again. The Four of Cups revolves around finding your true interests and working towards fulfilling them. Our lives are short, and sometimes monotonous, but we must create meaning for ourselves. Our individual callings are not just there for us to find, but to decide and to imagine. 

Upright Love Meaning Upright Career Meaning Upright Finances Meaning
bored with love life, lack of excitement in relationship bored with job, feeling unhappy with job or career, lack of progress feeling disillusioned with money, envious of others

Upright 4 of Cups Tarot Love Meaning

If you’re single, the 4 of Cups tarot love meaning suggests a time of feeling boredom or indifference regarding your love life. Sometimes, this can come naturally after a break up, but one must make sure that this doesn’t come from unconsciously attempting to protect yourself from possible pain and suffering that love has brought you in the past. Opportunities come when you are open to seeing them, and right now you can’t be bothered. Should you already be in a relationship, there can be a lack of interest and weariness in your relationship. Excitement has faded and you may feel more like roommates than lovers. Sometimes this requires only some exploration and willingness to experiment. Without some effort from both partners, the relationship may be nearing its end.

Career Meaning - Upright 4 of Cups

If you see the four of cups in a tarot reading about your career, you may feel distracted and distant at work. It might be hard to focus on the tasks at hand or get excited about projects. This boredom can also be impacting your mood negatively. You might feel down on yourself and thus find it even harder to be productive. None of this is aided by the overwhelming stagnation you probably feel. This stagnation might be the root of the issue. It can be hard to focus if you feel you are going nowhere. It may be helpful to take some time to detangle this issue; looking inward and knowing what makes you feel so unhappy and doing something about this can help you make a change for the better.

Finances Meaning - Upright 4 of Cups

When it comes to your finances, the four of cups can signal that you may feel distracted. Are you so busy being jealous of what others have that you do not see what is in front of you? You may be constantly comparing your own situation with others, but this envy can be preventing you from appreciating what you already have. Being more grateful can also help you see better ways of bettering your financial situation, and be more comfortable when it comes to taking material risks. If you are so fixated on what you do not have, you may never notice the opportunities to actually achieve that which you envy. At times this card can also present as a general disillusionment with money, capitalism and financial systems in general. 

Interpreting the Upright Four of Cups as Feelings

The Upright Four of Cups reflects feelings of apathy, discontent, and boredom. You might be experiencing a sense of emotional detachment or dissatisfaction with your current circumstances. This card suggests that you may be focusing on what's lacking in your life rather than appreciating what you already have. It could indicate a need to address underlying emotions that are causing you to feel unfulfilled or uninspired. Take time to reflect on your emotions and consider ways to find contentment within yourself.

Interpreting the Upright Four of Cups as Actions

When the Upright Four of Cups appears in a reading, it may suggest that you are withdrawing emotionally or turning down opportunities presented to you. You might be refusing to engage with certain situations or relationships due to a sense of disinterest or disillusionment. This card encourages you to reevaluate your perspective and consider whether there are hidden blessings or opportunities that you are overlooking. It may be a time to practice mindfulness, gratitude, and open-mindedness to prevent missing out on positive experiences.

Interpreting the Upright Four of Cups as Yes or No

The Upright Four of Cups is a complex card to interpret as a yes or no answer. In general, this card leans towards a no response. It indicates a lack of enthusiasm or dissatisfaction with the current situation, making it unlikely for a positive outcome to manifest at this time. However, it also serves as a reminder to look inward, address any emotional issues, and reassess your perspective before making a final decision. Consider this as an opportunity for introspection and personal growth before moving forward with your query.

Four of Cups Reversal Meaning

While in the upright four of cups, you may be suffering from apathy and ignore the opportunities that the universe offers you, the reversed four of cups signals the desire to have a new start.

The sudden awareness of the transient beauty of life may strike you now, while previously you may have been too deeply disconnected from yourself to see it. You are coming to the understanding that though life is not perfect, there is beauty in it, and joy comes from choosing to see this beauty.

Embrace new ideas, new people and new places; because you never know where these adventures can take you. Many may miss these chances because they are too confined in their own beliefs and ambitions.

Reversed Love Meaning Reversed Career Meaning Reversed Finances Meaning
being more active in love, new understanding of love new inspiration or creativity, realizations about career, adjustments positive approach to finances, willpower to achieve financial goals

Reversed 4 of Cups Tarot Love Meaning

You may be exiting a time of withdrawal and contemplation with the reversed 4 of Cups tarot love meaning, and you may be becoming more active in your romantic life again, this time, with a better understanding and appreciation for what it brings you. If you are recovering from a breakup, you may be just starting to let go of past suffering, and the future seems full of promise. Be excited for what the future brings you. With a better understanding of what you want and who you are, the potential loves that you encounter now can be refreshingly different. 

Career Meaning - Reversed 4 of Cups

When reversed, the four of cups can signal an end to the stagnation you’ve been experiencing at work lately. This change might be sudden. It could feel like a revelation of sorts or as if a fog has lifted. You might find that your creativity has suddenly returned. As a result, you will be about to move forward in your work projects using this new found sense of inspiration and creativity. If your new realizations about your career are telling you that you need to make a change, now would be the time to do so. While the changes might be fast, do not mistake it for luck. You will still need to harness your newfound energy. The universe won’t give you anything unless you take action, but opportunities you did not previously consider or notice can suddenly take the forefront in your career. 

Finances Meaning - Reversed 4 of Cups

The reversed four of cups can signal a journey towards economic betterment and security. This is not only a result of your ability to control your finances but is symptomatic of your efforts to appreciate what you already have. While you might have previously been envious of others for their financial security, you may be taking steps to be more positive with your approach to finances. The universe will reward you as you focus your energy towards better financial habits. Save and spend as you need to without letting what others think or have distract you. Be prepared to work for the rewards that this card signals.

Interpreting the Reversed Four of Cups as Feelings

In the Reversed Four of Cups, feelings of discontent and emotional stagnation are beginning to lift. You might be experiencing a shift towards greater emotional awareness, openness, and a willingness to explore new opportunities. This card suggests that you are starting to find a renewed sense of interest and enthusiasm in your life. It indicates a potential breakthrough in addressing any lingering feelings of apathy or dissatisfaction. Embrace this time as a chance to welcome positive change and emotional growth.

Interpreting the Reversed Four of Cups as Actions

When the Reversed Four of Cups appears in a reading, it encourages you to take action towards overcoming emotional challenges or hesitations. You may find yourself more open to new experiences, relationships, or perspectives. This card signifies a time to break free from the cycle of stagnation and actively seek out opportunities for personal growth and fulfillment. It prompts you to engage with the world around you, embrace change, and make decisions that align with your evolving emotional state.

Interpreting the Reversed Four of Cups as Yes or No

The Reversed Four of Cups as a yes or no answer leans towards a more positive outlook compared to its upright counterpart. It suggests a shift towards a more favorable outcome or a greater likelihood of a positive resolution. This card signifies a potential turning point where obstacles are being overcome, and emotional clarity is emerging. While it doesn't guarantee a definite yes, it indicates that the situation is evolving in a more positive direction. Take this as a sign to remain open-minded, proactive, and optimistic as you move forward with your query.

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4 of Cups: Reinforcing Cards

We won't be able to list each and every reinforcing card in the deck, but here are some of the first ones that come to mind, as they are often dependent on the reader's interpretations and experiences. The appearance of the 4 of Cups alongside any of these cards could intensify this card's themes.

Eight of Cups: The Eight of Cups symbolizes walking away from emotional stagnation and seeking higher fulfillment. Alongside the 4 of Cups, this combination indicates that the time for introspection and contemplation has yielded new insights. These discoveries may have made you realized that an era in your life has come to an end, and it's now necessary to actively pursue a more fulfilling path.

The Hermit: When the 4 of Cups appears with The Hermit, it signifies introspection, soul-searching, and seeking inner guidance. The Hermit represents a period of solitude and self-reflection, mirroring the contemplative state depicted in the 4 of Cups. Together, these cards suggest that withdrawing from external distractions and delving deep into your emotions and thoughts can lead to profound insights and personal growth. The Hermit's lantern shines a light on the shadows of discontentment, guiding you towards a deeper understanding of yourself and the source of your emotional unrest.

The Hanged Man: The Hanged Man signifies surrender, letting go, and gaining a new perspective through sacrifice. It embodies a period of suspension and self-reflection, mirroring the emotional withdrawal and introspection in the 4 of Cups. Together, these cards suggest that embracing a state of pause and surrendering can lead to a shift in perception and a deeper understanding of your inner world. You are being invited to release resistance and explore your discontentment from a different angle, allowing for personal growth and enlightenment.

Four of Cups: Opposing Cards

Opposing cards can provide a different perspective. In a reading, you may find that they create interesting points of tension between the Four of Cups, sometimes giving a much needed balance to the reading, or indicating some kind of inner conflict.

The Emperor: The Emperor embodies authority and control, challenging the passive and detached nature of the Four of Cups. While the Four of Cups represents introspection and withdrawal, The Emperor pushes you to take charge of your circumstances and assert your power and leadership.

  • Passive and detached vs Authority and control
  • Introspection vs Taking action
  • Emotional withdrawal vs Asserting power

The World: The World card signifies completion and fulfillment, conflicting with the apathy and disconnection of the Four of Cups. While the Four of Cups suggests emotional withdrawal and dissatisfaction, The World represents achievement and wholeness, urging you to embrace opportunities for growth and expansion.

  • Apathy and disconnection vs Completion and fulfillment
  • Emotional withdrawal vs Achievement and wholeness
  • Dissatisfaction vs Embracing growth

Four of Wands: The Four of Wands symbolizes celebration and harmony, challenging the introspective and withdrawn nature of the Four of Cups. While the Four of Cups encourages contemplation and emotional retreat, the Four of Wands invites you to engage with others, celebrate achievements, and find joy in communal experiences.

  • Introspection and withdrawal vs Celebration and harmony
  • Contemplation vs Engagement with others
  • Emotional retreat vs Finding joy in communal experiences

Four of Cups Tarot Cheat Sheet

Four of Cups Meaning - Tarot Card Meanings Cheat Sheet. Art from Golden Thread Tarot.

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