Card 2: The High Priestess


In Numerology: 2
Star Sign or Planet: Moon
Yes or No answer: Unclear
Key dates: None

The High Priestess in an Upright Position


When the High Priestess is encountered in its upright position in a spread, it is time for the querent to embrace the hidden knowledge within themselves. It is also apparent that there is an initiation into the occult occurring or that there are secret energies at work that have to do with the higher self and fate in general. There is information available that is not ready to be shared, and the querent is invited to follow their instincts, gut feelings, or general intuition about the people and situations around them. This is the card of all occult knowledge and encourages one to enjoy nature and all things connected to the divine. A gentle yet deeply intuitive woman may be entering the querent’s world or circle of friends, and the querent is encouraged to pay close attention to the knowledge and insight she is about to share. Occult study, especially where there is a belief in a goddess principle is highlighted, and one who encounters this card may be fascinated in magic, divination, or other means of communication between the living, dead, and otherworldly beings that hold the keys to life and living in order to fulfil a greater goal than can be contained in one lifetime.

This card also urged the querent to look to their subconscious for answers and direction. One may be inspired by the hidden mysteries of the occult or spirituality in general, and there is a feeling of using one’s subconscious to change the circumstances in their earthly existence. There are possibilities of being healed through belief or with the help of unseen forces, and this card can indicate that there is help coming from beyond the veil that separate this world from the other realm. One may be studying occult philosophies, and there are signs that the querent may be experiencing an awakening or epiphany of sorts regarding their purpose or mission on Earth and in this life. The formation of wisdom is on the horizon and deep-seated, almost, primitive knowing is inherent.

The High Priestess in a Reversed Position


Any card in a reversed position is diminished or completely inverted in meaning. The reversed position of the High Priestess shows the exact opposite of that which she embodies. This represents a shallow, superficial human being that cannot see past what is tangible in real life. A scientific minded individual that favours reason over all else. Lack of insight, intuition, inspiration, and denial of their existence is often hinted at by this card. Rigidity and an inability to be perceptive is very strong with the arrangement of a reversed High Priestess card. There may be a lack of balance between dark and light, too much light or too much dark: forces overtaking one another and creating conflict as one struggles for power over the other. The querent may possess academic knowledge, but is lacking in spiritual knowledge. The querent may be a non-believer when it comes to anything unseen. Close-mindedness, refusal to believe in anything that cannot be proved, a lack of faith due to empirical thinking.

When this card is inverted, or reversed, the High Priestess can be seen seemingly hanging from the ceiling as if to warn that a lack of balance upsets the throne of the divine, and the underworld is now placed above her while the earthly plane is below. Even the pillars have switched their position, showing that there is chaos when the real world is out of balance with the spiritual side of life. There is no knowledge beyond what can be seen, heard, felt, and verified. This card in a reversed position can show a fact-checker, know-it-all, or one who thumbs his nose unwisely at the mysteries of the universe and humanity. Irreverence and refusal to recognize the darker or lighter side of the spectrum. A lack of an inner compass and disdain for the occult are also brought to the forefront when the High Priestess is present in this form. Regardless of the querent’s personal opinion, this card is calling out to them to reverse their bias towards earthly religion and focus on the beliefs of their heart that resonate deep within but cannot be immediately answered.

Symbolism and History of the High Priestess

The High Priestess, also known as the sorceress, symbolizes all things that are hidden from our earthly eyes. She is commonly seated at a throne, and may have the moon beneath her feet. She is seated between two pillars: one black, the other white. She could also be holding a scroll which has the sacred laws of the universe scribed on it, and there are pomegranate fruits, which are the fruit that embodies the underworld and is rumoured to have been created by Adonis’ spilt blood.

The High Priestess is considered the goddess of the underworld, which is why she has her own thrown as is fitting. Each of the pillars seen in this card signify the dark and light aspects at play during life, and the unseen forces that work behind the scenes to balance the light and dark within us all.

Numbered in traditional decks as Card 2, The High Priestess shows the deepest mysteries of life and beyond. She is the continuation of the fool’s journey; the revealing of secrets from within oneself. It speaks of messages from beyond the veil and important information that comes from those on the other side of that veil. There is a feeling that any secrets that are revealed now may not be meant to be shared and should remain hidden as long as possible in order to prevent them from influencing reality and future events. The High Priestess is the liaising force between the living and dead, the natural and supernatural, as well as this world and the next. This card is about more than psychism, but the divine supremacy within oneself that holds the key and answers to some of life’s most burning questions.

Key Terms


Occultism, Psychism, Hidden Knowledge, Mystery, Secrets, Balance of good and evil, The underworld, Messages from beyond the grave, Intuitiveness, Divine inspiration, Disbelief, Denial, Atheism.

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