“By holding the flowers in her hands at the same height, Justice wants to show that everything should be impartially. All people ought to be treated equally. The velvet sword in her hair is an encouraging reminder to stay strong in the fight for gay rights.” – by Catrin Welz-Stem (Pride Tarot Guidebook, © US Games Systems, Inc)
Suggested Archetype: Themis
In Hellenistic mythology, Themis was typically the titanic offspring of Uranus (Heaven) and Gaea (Earth) who personified neutral-valued “divine order” and “natural law”. They carried the scales of justice which later became associated with Justia/Nike who is depicted in traditional tarot cards. More than a goddess, themis was a concept of social custom, procedure, order, tradition, and what society accepts as normal of its members. We have come so far and paradoxically have so far to go in 2020+ society to ensure equal civil rights for all humans. Themis can be an archetype of successfully becoming citizens of a world where people are not discriminated against because of race, gender, nationality, ideology, sexual orientation, disability, etc.
By measuring how we treat others (and are being treated in return) as something that should be balanced, synergistic, and harmonious by default, we can create progressive social customs and procedures. This is probably one of the hardest things to do, especially consistently and selflessly.
The Golden Scales: The scales of judgment are typical to the Justice Card in classic tarot, going back to the Tarot de Marseilles at the very least. Traditionally, they symbolize that a decision should be made or a defendant judged innocent or guilty exclusively on evidence (facts or truths) rather than subjective opinions. Keeping one’s own scales even or balanced in an impartial manner when interacting with others the way they are depicted in this card is a constant and lifelong challenge.
The pink-red and white-blue flowers: The author doesn’t mention what specific flowers these are and I wasn’t able to come up with my own good guess. However, six-petaled flowers in general have a long symbolic history of being associated with love, spirituality, perfection, and the sacred. The center of the Seed or Flower of Life glyph has six petals. There is yingyang harmony to the two colors and the way they are arranged in the painting (four small ones in the hair in an elemental modality and the two larger ones held to the chest) that help promote the card’s general theme. It should be noted that it appears that the figure is herself standing in the center of a giant flower that has the same shades, as does her dress.
The gloved hands: The figure is wearing white gloves with exaggeratedly long fingers that are fringed with the same black chain link that is attached to the gold sleeves. I think this is intentional on the creator’s part. To me, I interpret this that the figure is willingly fulfilling an obligatory task to remain pure and impartial; they hold the polarized flowers to their skin but will not be affected or changed by either or both of them.
The dress: White lace decorates the hourglass-shaped dress’s bodice and then forms what looks to me like a pair of small angelic or fairy wings that add a great deal to the idea that this figure is not a human woman nor necessarily born biologically female. She is a she to her creator, however. The lovely octahedron shape that decorates the dress is associated with the heart chakra and with integration, balance, and harmony.
Reading Justice (In General)
Upright this card could mean something like:
- You can expect a fair and reasonable outcome to whatever dispute is going on.
- It is extremely important to put your own prejudices aside and look carefully at the facts and details of this situation rather than making assumptions.
- Do not judge yourself by higher or lower standards than you would anyone else in this situation.
- Being assertive vs. being aggressive or passive is the only way to accomplish what you desire to do.
Reversed this card could mean something like:
- There is going to be a lot of subjective bias and bigotry to contend with regarding this specific person or situation. Be sure you are part of the solution and not the underlying problem.
- Sometimes, really bad and unfair things happen regardless of how good, decent, and moral our own behavior is. Be strong and look at alternative ways to get what you need if you suffer a major setback or loss in this specific situation.
- If you are simply too angry or upset to deal reasonably with this specific person or situation, walk away and cut your losses.
- The most important thing for you to do right now is to take good care of yourself and any dependents. Find allies and support that makes your life easier and not harder.
Justice In Questions About Relationships
You as Justice Upright: If this is about a romantic or familial relationship, it is especially important that you look at what that other person is saying and compare that to their actions and lifestyle. If there is a discrepancy, confront them. Do not lower your standards out of pity or a need for companionship.
You as Justice Reversed: There is something going on that has your own behavior and ideals out of sync with each other. It might be time to step back and seriously ask yourself what toxic or unfair behavior are you bringing to this relationship and what kind of self-work is needed in order to do right by the other party.
The Other Person as Justice Upright: This is someone who needs you to mean what you say and keep your promises. If they are setting a bar that is simply too high and leaves you stressed and frustrated, it might be time to step out of the situation at least temporarily. On the other hand, it might be that you both could benefit from seeing a therapist together and getting some impartial assistance in problem-solving what is going on.
The Other Person as Justice Reversed: Listen carefully to what they are describing is going on in their life, especially when it comes to how they feel pressured or threatened by people with some kind of authority over them. Be someone who is giving them the kind of affection and support they need without strings or any kind of unfair demands attached.
“Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.”
― Cornel West
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