Temperance is the card of moderation, balance, harmony, and patience. An angel stands, with one foot in the water and the other foot firmly planted on land. The angel pours water between two cups, symbolizing the flow and alchemy of life.
Temperance reminds us that we must avoid going to extremes. We are often best served by taking a moderate, patient, and balanced view towards life. Temperance reminds us that caution, prudence, and thoughtfulness have their place. They can often bring more reward in the long term than a passionate outburst based only on a whim. To maintain harmonious relationships, working together to find compromise is often necessary.
If Temperance appears in a Tarot spread as a person, that means that this person is the most zen and patient person you will ever meet. It is astrologically associated with Sagittarius, a spiritual, high-minded, and philosophical energy. Because Sagittarius is a masculine sign, this card carries an active, assertive energy. We all have a little bit of both energies expressed in a balanced way, regardless of which gender we identify as. Because this is a Major Arcana card, some of these defining traits make up a major part of their identity. So, for example, being a “big picture thinker” or a spiritualist will play a major role in who they are, or how they view themselves. Note that they may not reveal this side to you at the beginning stages of your relationship, to others, or ever.
For physical characteristics, Temperance as a person represents someone who has a calming presence about them. They have the vibe of a very sophisticated, worldly sage. Because the Temperance card is astrologically associated with abundant Jupiter and jetsetting Sagittarius, this person might actually come off very glamorous at first glance. But don’t be fooled by that first impression. This person has a lot of depth to them, and they may have complex and well-thought-out opinions on philosophical issues. Alternatively, they may appear very modest, when in fact they are super wealthy. Again, this person is in your life to teach you to never judge a book by its cover. Physically, they’re also very well balanced. They consume a very well-moderated diet. Even though they’re not averse to enjoying the finer things in life, they never overuse or abuse substances.
For emotional characteristics, Temperance as a person represents someone who knows how to moderate their emotions. Temperance people tend to be regulating and compartmentalizing their emotions in a very rational way. These people are exceptionally emotionally intelligent. This person invented ideas like “holding grudges only hurts yourself.” They rarely lose their temper, but they have healthy boundaries. For them, their peace of mind is one of their most important assets, and they will not be robbed of it. They place a lot of value on intangible and immaterial things, such as friendships, harmony, and humanity as a whole.
For careers, Temperance can represent someone who works as a mediator, or somebody who is professionally tasked to calm a situation down. Their profession may involve soothing people, facilitating balance and harmony, and the overall healing of people’s well-being. They can be anything from a legal mediator, a crisis manager at a PR firm, a diplomat, or even an ASMR Reiki YouTuber. They know how to make people feel cared for. Dealing with difficult personalities is their expertise. Their calm vibes and demeanor also makes them great with animals, so they could be a veterinarian or animal trainer.
Temperance as a person represents someone who makes you feel like you’re around an all around good person. They are highly considerate and sensitive, even if you never see them express this caring side of them on a one-on-one scale. Because this card is astrologically associated with Sagittarius, they’re always considering their actions through a big picture lens. They are always mindful of how their decisions and their lifestyle will impact the community as a whole. They love the adage “think globally, act locally.”
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If Temperance reversed appears in a Tarot spread as a person, that means that this person is unbalanced, unwise, and doesn’t value harmony. This person may have weak self-control. When in the reverse position, this energy can become prone to addictions and codependencies. The energy is a more personalized, hidden version of the Devil’s energy. But unlike the Devil, reversed Temperance is usually more ashamed of their vices, and they put up a front. Because this is a Major Arcana card, some of these traits will be inherent aspects of their identity. Good or bad, nobody is perfect and people can change, if they choose to.
For physical characteristics, Temperance reversed as a person represents someone who is the epitome of excess. This person doesn’t practice moderation in their lives, as unfortunately Jupiter’s influence makes everything they do very “extra.” For example, they may overdo their workout to the point where even a trainer would say that the amount of working out that they do is unhealthy. This is the type of person who is literally addicted to going to the gym. On the other end of the spectrum, this person could have addictions to substances that are not good for them. These substances don’t necessarily have to be illegal. They could be alcohol, sugar, or fast food. This person’s lack of self-discipline and self-control can get them into a lot of debt if they are addicted to shopping for designer brands they can’t afford.
For emotional characteristics, Temperance reversed as a person represents someone whose emotions are all over the place. This person may lack the self awareness to do their shadow work. They have unresolved emotions and life events. They don’t know how to sit still and process their trauma. Alternatively, perhaps they do possess self-awareness, but they are bogged down by circumstances. This person may live a very hectic or chaotic life where they never seem to have the alone time to just be with themselves. They could be constantly on the go and too concerned with more practical things to worry about their own mental health.
For careers, Temperance reversed can represent someone who can be considered “chaotic” in their workplace. This could be your resident drama queen. As a whole, their career may have benefited from some sort of chaotic situation. For example, this may be somebody who works in a field where they benefit from crises. This may be something as innocent as services that suddenly became essential during a natural disaster or worldwide pandemic. They could work at an investment firm. Or, they could be involved in something more sinister where they benefit from other people’s tragedies. Alternatively, this person may be involved in the illegal drug trade or any addictive substance or product: alcohol, video games, etc.
Temperance reversed as a person represents someone who makes you feel imbalanced and chaotic. This could be a friend who you would consider a very bad influence. This is that friend with a drinking habit, a drug habit, a drug addiction, or even a shopping addiction. Being around them just leaves you feeling out of sync. They will either drag you into their problems and make them your problems, or you’ll end up with the same problem as them. Additionally, their moods can be unpredictable, and their behavior is erratic. If you are romantically involved with this person, they may exaggerate perceived slights, and may actually enjoy the bickering and conflict they have with you.
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For love readings, Temperance reveals the power of patience, compassion, and understanding. When we try to force relationships and people to go the way we want, it can often implode in our face. Temperance urges us to embrace patience, moderation, compromise, diplomacy, and the middle path. When we lean into these qualities, we build trust. Over time, trust solidifies into a rock-solid foundation for a great relationship.
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