(i) Three of Cups YouTube Video
Three of Cups : My in-depth YouTube Video on the Three of Cups of the Thoth Tarot deck may be viewed below:
(ii) Thoth Three of Cups
In the Three of Cups the cups are holding pomegranates which refer to Persephone & Demeter. There are 8 lotus flowers in all with water free-flowing from the top to the bottom of the card into the blue sea below.
(iii) Rider Waite Three of Cups
(iv) Card Mythology of the Three of Cups
Persephone was gathering flowers one day on a plain in Sicily. Hades suddenly appeared, thundering across the plain in his four-horse chariot. The god swooped down upon Persephone, scooped her up with one arm, and literally and figuratively deflowered her—leaving the plain scattered with blossoms of every colour.
The Long Winter of Her Discontent
Demeter soon came to collect her daughter, but could not find a trace of Persephone. Distraught and desperate, Demeter searched high and low for her daughter. She traveled to the farthest corners of the earth, searching for nine full days and nights without ever stopping to eat, drink, bathe, or rest. Demeter was in a fury. She destroyed lands, crops, and livestock as she bewailed the loss of her daughter.
The Renewal of Spring
Demeter would not restore fertility to the land until she had her daughter by her side. Eventually Hermes, summoned by Zeus, raced down to Hades to fetch Persephone. Hades shrugged compliantly and agreed to let her go. Persephone had not eaten a single thing—whether from sorrow, loss of appetite, or stubbornness—since her arrival in the Underworld. But before she left, Hades urged Persephone to appease her terrible hunger by eating a single pomegranate seed. Sadly, this apparent act of kindness was a trick: Anyone who tastes the food of Hades must remain in the Underworld.
The deed having been done, Rhea—the mother of Zeus, Demeter, and Hades—proposed a compromise that her children reluctantly accepted: Since Persephone had eaten there, she had to dwell at least part of every year in the Underworld. Rhea suggested that Persephone spend six months (or, according to some, three or four months) as Queen of the Underworld and the rest of the year with Demeter.
After agreeing to the deal, Demeter restored Earth’s fertility and returned to Olympus with Persephone. But when the time came for Persephone to return to the Underworld, the earth became colder and less fertile until her reemergence months later.
Since the abduction of Persephone, spring and summer have given way to autumn and winter, and the earth’s fertility has followed the progression of seasons. In the fall, seeds—like Persephone herself—were buried underground. But in the spring, Persephone and the earth’s crops came out into the sun once more.
When Persephone returns to the land of the living, her mother, DEMETER celebrates and spring arrives, thus this card represents the warmth and fertility of spring time as seen in the photo below:
(v) Three of Cups & The Tree of Life
Associated with Binah, the 3rd sephiroth in Briah
(vi) Shehamphrash Angels of the Three of Cups
Rochel: Restitution. Finds lost or stolen objects. Giving and taking. Rediscovery of the Divine Self, of the original androgyny. Intuition. Return to one’s homeland. Succession.
Iabamiah: Alchemy. Transforms evil into good. Healing, regeneration. Psychopomp.
(vii) Astrology of the Three of Cups
1. Decan: second decan of Cancer 10 – 20 degrees
2. Mercury in Cancer
Cancer: is the most maternal of the signs and is well placed in the sea of Binah at the bottom of the card.
These people communicate with feeling, conveying a sensitive, withdrawn, and thoughtful nature to the people they interact with.
Cancer communicators come across as gentle, intuitive, and sentimental. Sometimes, they can appear quite defensive, as they can take things quite personally.
Mercury (will and communication) into Cancer (nurturing). So we are able to express our feelings fully with people we are close to which enriches our life. This is whats important to us.
(viii) Symbology of the Three of Cups
The 8 lotuses: refer to Hod ruled by MERCURY. It was Mercury who relayed the message from Zeus begging for Persephone’s release from the land of the dead, and it was he who carried her back to the land of the living in his chariot (Cancer)
8 = also the number of months Persephone resided in the land of the living.
7 streams from cups = 7 the number of Venus that rules Netzach. It symbolises the love uniting Persephone (the cups) and Demeter (the sea)
Background = clear skies, calm sea = life is good !
Pomegranates = the riches we have experienced emotionally through nurturing of friendships.
3 cups = one elevates above the other = abundance of feelings for close friends but one in particular
Sea = of Binah or 3rd sephiroth in which the cups overflow. Binah is associated with the feminine and the cups by their very nature are receptive and so both reinforce and support each other.
(ix) Quotes from the Book of Thoth
- Mercury is the will or word of the all Father; here its influence descends upon the most receptive of all the signs, Cancer (p.196)
- The pomegranate was the fruit which Persephone ate in the realms of Pluto, thereby enabling him to hold her in the lower worlds, even after the Gods had tried to free her. The lesson seems to be that the good things of life, although enjoyed, should be distrusted (p.196,197).
(x) Divinatory Meanings of the Three of Cups
- Sharing your success and joy with friends. Life feels good, not short of necessities.
- Birth of a child, an idea or goal
- A good time for you to communicate your abundance of feelings for those important in your life and express yourself.
- A great time for you to communicate with others in a way that nurtures, motivates and uplifts them and you at the same time.
- Enjoy your riches at the moment but be aware of their limitations and don’t get lost in them, just see them for what they are.
- Too much extravagance in your life right now
- What you are communicating to others is not uplifting or nurturing either them or you so a need to take a step back and look at what is stopping abundance in your life in a healthy way.