Do you know your Four Elements system? First conceived of by the Greek philosopher, Empedocles, you’ll find that these building blocks of reality – Fire, Air, Water, and Earth – appear all across modern metaphysical thought, including Astrology and Tarot. If you know your Elements, you often have a handy mental teleprompter at your disposal if you get stuck on the meaning of a Tarot card or an astrological symbol.
Fire has to do with the energy-field level of existence. It’s the spark of life inside all living things. It’s explosive and fast. It scorches and consumes when employed recklessly, but it warms and illuminates when treated with care and respect. Fire is about passion, courage, impulse, adventure, anger, and lust. It’s the Tarot Suit of Wands, and the astrological Signs of Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius.
Air is the mental layer of life. It’s brain-stuff, the fields of the mind. Too much Air can skewer a telephone-pole with a piece of straw, but the right amounts can fill our wings and our sails so we can soar. Air has to do with communication, language, symbols, logic, speech, reading, writing. It’s the Suit of Swords, and it’s Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius.
Water is the emotional realm. Water is heart-business. Too much of it will drown us, but just enough will cleanse and nourish us to sublime degree. Water is feelings and romance, poetry and dreaming, the subconscious mind and our psychic experiences, our mysticism and transcendence. Water is the Suit of Cups, and it’s Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces.
Earth is the land of the physical. It’s the body and the material world. Fixating on it can weigh us down into paralysis, but working with it wisely grants us structure that supports and feeds us. Earth is health, money, career, home, possessions, and family. It’s the Suit of Pentacles (or Disks or Coins…), and it’s Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn.
Learn this system, and metaphysics becomes that much more Elementary!
Bonus factoid: I identify mainly with the Water Element…hence the King of Cups card here. How about you…?