card meanings & reading









The Meaning of the Strength
Major Arcana Tarot Card in Readings

The Tarot Strength card meaning in a nutshell:
Strength of a kind that's superior
because of its clever application.

Hero - a great feat.

       The strength on the picture of the Tarot Strenght card seems delicate: A maiden pure at heart holds the jaws of a lion, making it harmless. That's real strength, far beyond what mere muscles can accomplish. It's so powerful because it has an ideal.

       It's very significant that on the Tarot Strength card image, she masters the lion not by forcing its jaws apart, like any Tarzan would, but by keeping them together, hiding its teeth. The lion has become harmless and its tongue suggests that it enjoys this. So, it's the strength of neutralizing strength. A beneficial paradox.

       Some would say that the Tarot Strength card is not about strength at all, but the path away from it. Maybe so. But strength is a force that tends to yield only to superior strength. Therefore, it can only be pacified by being defeated. That's the fundamental weakness of strength and the strength of weakness. What yields will prevail, what resists will break, Tao Te Ching has told us.

       An expressive example of this is Achilles, the hero of great strength who had just one weakness: his heel. That's where his mother held him when dipping the infant Achilles in the potion that made the rest of his body invulnerable. This tiny weakness killed him. Every strength has one. Here's a Roman sculpture of Achilles, just when an arrow pierces his heel:

Achilles. Sculpture by Innocenzo Fraccaroli, 1842.
Achilles, just as the fatal arrow strikes his heel, the great hero’s only weakness. Sculpture by Innocenzo Fraccaroli, 1842.

       The lion has mighty muscles by which to close its jaws on a prey, but not nearly as much strength to open them. Evolution slipped on that detail. Real strength is to utilize such weaknesses. That way, little strength is needed and still not even the strongest in the world can resist.

       If the Tarot Strength card refers to a person, it's someone who knows how to apply the resources to where they accomplish the most. Such strength is power. If the Strength card refers to an event, it would be one where victory went where it seemed the least likely. Strength, as most things human, is in the mind.

A. E. Waite about the Tarot Strength Card

Click the header to read what A. E. Waite had to say about the Major Arcana Strength Tarot card symbolism and meaning in divination.

The Major Arcana Tarot Cards

  1. The Magician

  2. The High Priestess

  3. The Empress

  4. The Emperor

  5. The Hierophant

  6. The Lovers

  7. The Chariot

  8. Strength

  9. The Hermit

  10. Wheel of Fortune

  11. Justice

  12. The Hanged Man

  13. Death

  14. Temperance

  15. The Devil

  16. The Tower

  17. The Star

  18. The Moon

  19. The Sun

  20. Judgement

  21. The World

  22. The Fool

The Book

Tarot Unfolded. Book by Stefan Stenudd. Tarot Unfolded

This book focuses on the Tarot card images and their allegorical symbols. Several spreads are introduced, as well as the meanings of all the 78 cards and their pictures. The book will help you find your own intuitive way of making inspired Tarot card readings. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

More about the book here.

My Other Websites:

I Ching Online

The 64 hexagrams of the Chinese classic I Ching and what they mean in divination. Try it online for free.

Complete Horoscope

How predictions are done in classical astrology with the full horoscope chart. Many examples.

Creation Myths

Creation stories from around the world, and the ancient cosmology they reveal.

Other Books of Mine

Your Health in Your Horoscope. Book by Stefan Stenudd.

Your Health in Your Horoscope

What the horoscope says about your health, according to the old tradition of medical astrology. Click the image to see the book (and Kindle ebook) at Amazon.

Life Energy Encyclopedia. Book by Stefan Stenudd.

Life Energy Encyclopedia

Qi, prana, spirit, pneuma, and many other life forces around the world explained and compared. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

Stefan Stenudd, Swedish author of fiction and non-fiction. Stefan Stenudd

About me

I'm a Swedish author. In addition to fiction, I've written books about the Tarot, Taoism, astrology and other metaphysical traditions. I'm also an historian of ideas, researching ancient mythology. Click the image to get to my personal website.