Learn the Thoth Tarot Deck Meanings

Exploring the Thoth Tarot deck meanings enriches your tarot readings by providing a unique and deeper perspective. The Thoth deck is deeply intertwined with the hermetic qabalah, astrology, and the intricate philosophies and experiences of Aleister Crowley.


If you’re curious about the Thoth Tarot deck meanings then you’re exactly where you need to be! Continue reading to embark on a journey of deeper understanding and discovery.

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The Major Arcana - Archetypes of Cosmic Power

Get ready to explore the Major Arcana, a set of twenty-two major trumps that hold deep cosmic insights. These cards are like doorways to another world, guiding you on a journey deep into yourself, into the “youniverse”.


Each card not only holds a unique meaning but also corresponds with a Hebrew letter and a path on the Tree of Life, as well as an element, planet, or zodiac sign. 

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Meanings of The Major Arcana in the Thoth Tarot Deck

The Fool: Ain soph in Kabbalah, representing nothingness or “no thing” ness, treads the fine line between enlightenment and madness, embodying the blind and unscrupulous creative fervor of absolute reality.


The Magus: Symbolizes everythingness, the infinite, and the consciousness of the universe.


The High Priestess: Represents everythingness but with light, adding a layer of illumination to the concept of everythingness.


The Empress: Embodies love in its purest form.


The Emperor: Stands for the self, representing individuality and self-awareness.


The Hierophant: Symbolizes initiation, representing the beginning of a spiritual or philosophical journey.


The Lovers: Represents division, possibly indicating choices or diverging paths.


The Chariot: Stands for the emanation of the self, representing personal development and growth.


Adjustment: As the name suggests, it represents adjustment, indicating a need for balance and harmony.


The Hermit: Symbolizes the secret creator, representing introspection and solitude.


The Wheel of Fortune: Represents the manifest universe in change, indicating cycles and rotations in life.


Lust: Embodies magic, representing passion and desire.


The Hanged Man: Stands for passivity, indicating a period of waiting or reflection.


Death: As the name suggests, it represents death, but often symbolizes transformation and new beginnings.


Art: Symbolizes union alchemy, representing the fusion of opposites and harmony.


The Devil: Represents the desire in the material universe generation, indicating earthly temptations and materialistic desires.


The Tower: Stands for chaos, representing sudden changes and disruptions.


The Star: Symbolizes the sky goddess, representing hope and spirituality.


The Moon: Represents the night of the soul, indicating a period of confusion and uncertainty.


The Sun: Stands for life and freedom, representing joy and vitality.


The Aeon: Symbolizes a new era and a whole cosmology, representing transformation and new beginnings.


The Universe: Represents the great work accomplished, indicating fulfillment and completion.


Each card in the Major Arcana of the Thoth Tarot Deck is a gateway to profound insights and cosmic power, guiding individuals in understanding not just who they are, but what they are, in the grand scheme of the universe.

The Minor Arcana: Insights into Everyday Experiences

The Minor Arcana of the Thoth Tarot Deck offers profound insights into our everyday experiences. Unlike the Major Trumps, which represent significant life themes and archetypal energies, the Minor Arcana cards delve into the details of our daily lives. There are four suits in the Minor Arcana: Wands, Cups, Swords, and Disks. Each suit represents a different aspect of our existence and carries its unique symbolism and meanings.

Meanings of the Suit of Wands in the Thoth Tarot Deck

Visual of the suit of wands.

The Suit of Wands of the Thoth deck is the first element on the scene, fire, making it all about initiation, novelty, and the first movements of creativity. The wands express the inherent desire to create.


The wands are generally associated with active powers, the sun, and force, as opposed to passive powers, the moon, and form. 


Ace of Wands: Big bang, the first motion “primum mobile”, the phallus.


Two of Wands: The first directionality.


Three of Wands: Development of the first motion or the first mover.


Four of Wands: Completion, establishment, and first structure.


Five of Wands: First obstacle, first friction.


Six of Wands: Harmony descending from the Ace of Wands, balance.


Seven of Wands: The continuation of fire and the will of fire on a lower plane.


Eight of Wands: The submission of fire but also the directionality of fire.


Nine of Wands: The culmination of fire, change equals stability.


Ten of Wands: The overpowering of fire.

Meanings of the Suit of Cups in the Thoth Tarot Deck

Visual of the suit of cups.

The Suit of Cups of the Thoth tarot deck is the response to the suit of wands, which receives the initial creative force (fire) and brings it into form and pattern (water).


This suit is all about the desire for an object, a form. This could be anything from a lover to food, to a positive experience.


Ace of Cups: The Moon, the sacred feminine, receptive power, the Cup of Babylon, and the Yoni.


Two of Cups: Love itself, love as a manifestation of the power of water.


Three of Cups: The ability and allowance of form, Persephone and Hades.


Four of Cups: The comfort of the Moon, stored emotional power, luxury, enjoyment but stasis.


Five of Cups: The removal of water, the challenges of water and dryness, a breakup card.


Six of Cups: The beginning of desire, the commencement of a wish, sexuality, harmony of water.


Seven of Cups: Imbalanced desire, perversion of sexuality.


Eight of Cups: The absence of desire, absence of water, absence of motivation.


Nine of Cups: The wish fulfilled, desire fulfilled, happy card.


Ten of Cups: Too much fulfillment, the wish overly granted.

Meanings of the Suit of Swords in the Thoth Tarot Deck

Visual of the suit of swords.

The Suit of Swords represents air, signifying the mind.


The mind is the microcosm of the macrocosm, which is the universe/source. The mind and air is also the marriage of fire and water. Fire is our inherent desire to create, and water is our desire for a result of that creation. The two individuals join forces to shape our identity, our ego, and society, symbolized by the Suit of Swords. 


Ace of Swords: Invocation, idea, the power of mind, and magic.


Two of Swords: Consciousness aware of itself.


Three of Swords: Inherent suffering of the human condition.


Four of Swords: Established awareness from multiple parties, entities.


Five of Swords: Unestablished awareness or disagreement in intellect, mind, also ego.


Six of Swords: Harmonious mind working in the right way.


Seven of Swords: Unique path, difficulty in self versus otherness.


Eight of Swords: People pleasing, the intellect on overdrive.


Nine of Swords: The continued fall of the intellect into madness.


Ten of Swords: The destruction of the intellect divorced from reality.

Meanings of the Suit of Disks in the Thoth Tarot Deck

Visual of the suit of disks.

The Suit of Disks in Thoth Tarot signifies the presence of the earth element, embodying the material realm. It’s noteworthy that this tangible world is a direct reflection of the mental plane, associated with the Suit of Swords.


Ace of Disks: The power of the sun on the earth, the potential of all matter.


Two of Disks: Change, especially material change that repeats, which is what the earth suit is all about.


Three of Disks: Work in a direction, inspired work activity, inspired production.


Four of Disks: Established material things or situations.


Five of Disks: Our incessant war with time and the illusion of time, the mind versus the material.


Six of Disks: Efforts done harmoniously, a balanced giving and taking.


Seven of Disks: Slow down, the importance of deliberation before continuing, unproductive directions.


Eight of Disks: Productive directions, continuing without necessarily much effort, the efficacy of natural growth without intervention.


Nine of Disks: Culmination of a material process and reward, the shift of exchange from goods to money.


Ten of Disks: Money growing beyond one person, legacy, financial systems, inheritance, civilizations, societies, and culture.

The Court Cards in the Thoth Tarot Deck

The court cards of the Thoth deck are organized by element. Not only do they take on the element of their suit, but also the element of their office. The knights are attributed to fire, the queens are water, the princes are air, and the princesses are earth. The element of their office is how they apply the element of their suit.


The combination of the two elements makes a force of nature that can symbolize their character. The knight of swords, for example, is fire (knight) of air (swords). The fire of air is expressed as capricious winds, which blow unpredictably and invisibly in all directions, like a passionate mind. 

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Suit of Wands - Thoth Tarot Court Cards

Knight of Wands: The knights are the “first movers” of the court cards, they initiate the process, he is our father of fire, he is lightning and an initiating force.


Queen of Wands: Our mother of fire, harnessing the power of fire into form, she might be the color of fire or the fluidity of fire, its attractive and illuminating quality.


Prince of Wands: Combustible and explosive qualities of fire, our son of fire, the mind applied to fire.


Princess of Wands: The earth receiving fire, earth’s latent and reactant fuel, In this way, she represents the reactive quality of matter when in contact with fire’s divine inspiration and creativity, a volcanic eruption.

Suit of Cups - Thoth Tarot Court Cards

Knight of Cups: The initiator of water, our father of water, emotional or poetic fervor, rain and dissolution, waves.


Queen of Cups: The harnessing of water, a mother of water, the deep ocean, deep psychic and healer archetypes.


Prince of Cups: The son of water which would be the higher self in regards to the emotions and the intuition, mental application of emotional experience, hydrostatic aspects of water and steam.


Princess of Cups: The aspect of water to give life, she is earth’s reception of water, crystallizing into form and life, inner creativity and flow.

Suit of Swords - Thoth Tarot Court Cards

Knight of Swords: The first initiation of mind, the aspiration, and desire of the mind, capricious and passionate mental activity, like the wind.


Queen of Swords: The harnessing of that intellectual fire into something more balanced, she’s also balance and clarity, and the working together of mind and intuition, she’s our mother of air.


Prince of Swords: Our son of air, he is the higher self in the world of mind, the master of the world of ideas, theory, the abstract, and also the self-concept of humanity.


Princess of Swords: The intellect and mind applied to the material universe, the wrath of the gods, the fixation of the volatile.

Suit of Disks - Thoth Tarot Court Cards

Knight of Disks: Father of earth, initiator of earth, the will of the earth to produce.


Queen of Disks: The will of the earth to take part in the great work, the will of the earth, and the material universe to take part in the ecosystem, and habitat. Co-creation.


Prince of Disks: Application of intellect to earth, the son of earth.


Princess of Disks: The final culmination and the signal to reintegrate back into the beginning.

Deeper Insights into Thoth Tarot

Explore the rich history and key figures behind the Thoth Tarot Deck in this section. Gain insight into the minds of Aleister Crowley and Lady Frieda Harris, and understand the pivotal role of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in shaping the deck.


Let’s unravel the philosophies and artistic visions that breathe life into the Thoth Tarot readings!

Aleister Crowley

Aleister Crowley (1875-1947) was an occultist, writer, and ceremonial magician who played a significant role in the modern occult revival.


He founded the religious movement Thelema, and his teachings have had a considerable influence on modern esoteric traditions. Aleister Crowley actually wrote the foundational text for the Thelema religious movement, the “Book of the Law,” outlining its core philosophies and ethical guidelines. Crowley was also a member of the esoteric Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.


Learn more about his life and works through his detailed biography.

The Book of Thoth

Separate from “The Book of the Law,” Crowley wrote “The Book of Thoth” to serve as a detailed guide to the Thoth Tarot deck, a set of tarot cards he created in collaboration with artist Lady Frieda Harris.


This book provides profound insights into the deck’s philosophy and symbolism, with a substantial emphasis on Qabalah and other esoteric doctrines. It is a vital resource for understanding the depth of wisdom and knowledge encapsulated in the Thoth Tarot deck.

Lady Frieda Harris

Lady Frieda Harris (1877-1962) was an artist and occultist responsible for illustrating the Thoth Tarot deck under the guidance of Aleister Crowley. Her work incorporated principles of Projective Synthetic Geometry, a mathematical concept she learned from her association with the mathematician Olive Whicher. Discover more about her life and artistic journey in her biography.

The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn

The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, founded in the late 19th century, profoundly influenced modern tarot. Members Aleister Crowley and Arthur Edward Waite each created iconic tarot decks drawing from the group’s teachings. Crowley developed the Thoth deck, while Waite created the Rider-Waite-Smith deck.


Both decks, rich in esoteric symbolism, have become staples in tarot readings worldwide, showcasing the Golden Dawn’s lasting impact on tarot’s evolution.

FREE - Thoth Tarot Reading Guide

This guide is your key to effortless readings, opening doors to ancient wisdom.