XIV. Temperance


Key words

Upright: balance, moderation, adaptation

Reversed: discord, frustration, excess, extremes


A red-winged angel, wearing the alchemical symbol for fire, pours water from one golden chalice into another. They stand with one foot in a stream of water and the other on land. In the background, a winding path makes its way toward a mountain range. The sun shines brilliantly over the mountains. Two yellow irises, a symbol of the goddess by the same name, bloom in the field of tall grass to the right of the angel. All four alchemical elements are represented in this scene.


14= 1 + 4 = 5: Conflict, loss, change, adversity, rebuilding

Temperance Upright

The Temperance card shows a need for balance, patience, and moderation. That could mean staying out of drama, remaining calm during a crisis, waiting for certain events to unfold, or bringing discordant elements into harmony. Rather than counting on others to change their ways, consider whether you can improve yourself and/or the way you work with others. Before making any big decisions, take a moment to evaluate the options available to you. Proceed slowly and carefully and you will know the best path forward.

Temperance Reversed

You may be feeling out of balance. Are you getting enough sleep? Making time for activities you enjoy? Drinking enough water? Temperance in reverse can indicate that it’s time to evaluate what (or whom) you want to keep in your life. Meditate or reflect on any extreme emotions that might come up; investigating the root cause might help you work through those emotions. Try not to make decisions based on impulses and try to find “the middle path” when working with others.