This season’s tarotscopes feature the Fyodor Pavlov Tarot and The Compendium of Constellations.
On this first day of winter, the sun moves from fiery Sagittarius into the cardinal earth of Capricorn, a sign that often gets described as ambitious, success-oriented, serious, focused, and driven. And while Capricorn can be all of those things, sometimes it’s nice to think beyond the lens of work-obsessed capitalism or virtues tied to wealth. Capricorn wants to set things in motion that will grow and thrive for the long-haul, systems and projects and ambitions that will eventually become a lasting legacy to support and sustain them. This is a sign with vision for the future, who can see possibilities within existing structures, who isn’t afraid to think big and pursue everything they crave to feel safe, powerful, and influential.
What does it mean to plant seeds with intention, to set things in motion that have space to expand? Earth as an element craves growth and stability, bringing a responsible and patient intentionality to efforts and ideas. But there can also be a tendency for earth to stick with what is known, to retreat to the familiar, to be slow to embrace new possibilities or opportunities — and I think that this aspect of earth is one of the reasons that the Order of the Golden Dawn associated Capricorn with one of the most feared and misunderstood archetypes in the deck: the Devil.
When we allow ourselves to think beyond Christian morality and puritanical ethics, the Devil becomes so much more than vices, reckless behaviors, and old patterns. This isn’t a card that we need to fear, but it is one that we can greatly benefit from working with. The Devil invites us to consider where we have felt restricted, and to be honest with ourselves about where that restriction is coming from. Where do our hands feel tied, and why? What is holding us back from deeper experimentation, richer play, a more powerful sense of connection? What have we been avoiding looking at fully, clearly, honestly? How might we be getting in our own way? And in establishing new objectives and building on old plans, where might we be served by exploration, instead of retreat?
Put another way: the Devil (card 15 / 1+5 = 6) shares the same numerological fingerprint as the Lovers (card 6). The number 6 is associated with choices and responsibilities, with community and partnership, with understanding how our relationships and actions ripple out into the world. There is richness here, but only if we allow ourselves to truly experience it. Where are you in your personal journeys and cycles? What have you chosen to invest your time, energy, inspiration, and other resources into, and how can you protect those initiatives? How can you stay connected to those you love, to the activities and desires that motivate you, inspire you, remind you of what matters most?
In this season of Capricorn, practice balancing your ambitions with honoring your needs, both physical and otherwise. What are you striving for? How can you build a solid future while also taking joy in your present? What boundaries are you setting, and which are you ready to adjust? Experienced tarot readers or astrologers can plug the cards I’ve drawn for their sun, moon, and rising signs into the spread below to create a custom reading for this season. Capricorn is ruled by Saturn, planet of time, restriction, and authority, so if you know your Saturn placement you can include it in this reading for a more complete picture of your season.
My first book, Finding the Fool: A Tarot Journey to Radical Transformation, comes out in March 2023, and preorders are a huge help for debut authors! The best way to stay up-to-date on my writings, offerings, and latest tarot spreads is by subscribing to my newsletter, Devils & Fools. I’m also opening up readings in some new formats next year, and subscribers always get first dibs on these offerings. You can also still find me on Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.
As always with these tarot readings, take what you need and leave what you don’t. Happy Capricorn season!
Page of wands
As a fellow cardinal sign, Capricorn season may have you chomping at the bit to start new things, put new ideas into play, tackle new ambitions and projects. And with fire at your fingertips and earth beneath your feet, this time of year may feel particularly energetic for you. The page of wands is a student of passion, someone who loves to feel sparks all around them. How can you explore new mediums, make space for new forms of inspiration? What motivates you, and how can you channel that into new pathways? What are you discovering about the ways your own internal fires are lit and sustained?
As an earth-ruled sign associated with Venus, you may find this new season to feel particularly joyful, abundant, and community-oriented, as the Empress is a figure of expansion, communication, expression, and generosity. You love your creature comforts, and this is a beautiful time to indulge, taking pleasure where you find it and bringing those you love into those activities too. How does being connected with your favorite people inspire you, encourage you? Where do you find support in expressing yourself? What has been growing within you, that you may be ready to share with the world?
Ten of wands
Been burning the candle at both ends? You’re great at juggling lots of projects, but this season may be a good opportunity to assess where your inspiration is still going strong, and where you may be running out of gas. Sometimes our old patterns for creativity, motivation, and collaboration grow stale, and we have to reassess what is truly lighting us up. Do you need a break? Are you craving something new and fresh to get your energy up again? Is there a project that’s sucking you dry rather than giving you joy? How can you adjust your priorities and responsibilities to give you more time for what you love, and for what you need to truly thrive?
Seven of wands
You’re so good at moving to the beat of your own drum, and it may feel this season that you need to stand up for what you believe in, what you’re working on, what your vision for the future looks like. Whether you’re starting something new or breathing new life into an existing project, pay attention to the people that stand by your side, and the obstacles that may come into your path. What are you willing to fight for? What motivates your devotion for the long-haul? Why does what you’re doing matter to you so much, and how can you build in ways to support your efforts so that you reach the finish line?
Two of cups
There may be opportunities for you to open that brave heart of yours this season, making space for a new relationship, dream, or belief to come in. Twos are the number of choice and balance, duality and opposition, so pay attention to any hesitations, concerns, or questions that hold you back from true vulnerability. How willing are you to let others see you? Who or what is trying to take up more space in your life? What are your emotions centering around, and how can you be deliberate in the ways that you process, analyze, and express those big feelings?
While this card has a reputation for dreamy mystery, confusing fantasy, and grappling with the wild unknown, numerologically the Moon archetype is the same as your birth card, the Hermit. Both of these 9 cards hold a wise philosophical energy that balances out the more detached sense of something ending, so as you move into this season of cardinal earth, pay attention to what you may be wrapping up, and where you still crave answers or exploration. What is piquing your curiosity, and where do you feel satisfied? How do you understand your own longings, and where might they be a means to an end? What clarity is there to be found within your fears and desires?
You may find a new sense of hope this season, with fresh starts and possibilities all around. Whether you’ve recently moved through a major shift or you’ve been dreaming of something different, pay attention to those internal discoveries, and don’t be afraid to trust your instincts. There is magic to be found, if you’re willing to sit in stillness and welcome it with open arms. What is opening up within you? How can you make space for recovery and awareness? How are you showing yourself love and kindness right now?
Ten of swords
It may feel like your mind is stuck this season, whirling endlessly on a particular issue without gaining any real ground. Sometimes obsessing over something is how you figure it out, but other times, those cyclical thoughts can leave you scrambling for truth, unable to figure out which way is up. Give yourself the gift of rest this season, taking opportunities to see any struggles, victories, or dilemmas through a new set of eyes. How can you get out of your own way? Where is your perspective too narrow? Who do you trust to help you see a challenge or obstacle more clearly?
Something big and beautiful may be coming to an close for you this season, calling for celebration, joy, and much-needed rest. But this archetype can sometimes leave us restless or uncertain, particularly if the journey that we’ve been on is something that doesn’t have an obvious or clear conclusion, ending, or finish line. What have you been working towards, that you’ve fully achieved? Where is pride and satisfaction bubbling up within you? How can you take a few beats to honor all that you’ve accomplished, even if it’s hard to consider it finished?
Three of wands
Happy birthday, Capricorn! Your season is so often about looking forward and seizing opportunities, which doesn’t always mean that your efforts will immediately result in success — sometimes you have to keep your eyes fixed on the horizon and wait for that ship to come in. But this card isn’t just about future success; it’s also an opportunity to celebrate what you’ve already done, and to continue finding joy and abundance in your present. How can you balance ambition with revelry? What are you already proud of? What would it feel like to trust that good things are already at your fingertips, and that something even better is on its way?
Six of cups
This season of fixed earth holds some sweet tenderness for you, as you may find opportunities for play, connection, and healing. It often feels more comfortable for you to move through the world rationally, analytically, but you may find a lot of value in tapping into your emotions this season, thinking about where you’ve come from, what shaped you, and what joy really looks like for you. How often are you vulnerable, not only with others but also with yourself? What have you been longing for, and how do you care for that desire? How can you be gentle with yourself?
Four of swords
Your mutable water may feel at odds with the cardinal earth of this season, but as the sun moves into Capricorn, pay attention to ways that you can protect your mind and create intentional spaces for rest. You don’t always have to be building or giving or planning or dreaming or supporting or moving. You deserve rest, breaks, opportunities to let your heart and body heal. How can you intentionally protect your peace? What do you need in order to feel safe slowing down or stopping for a time?