King of Cups Tarot Card Meanings

Holistic Tarot card meanings and correspondences for the King of Cups
“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.”

~ John Holmes

The King of Cups has mastered his emotions to the point where he is able to actively able to engage with people who are suffering and ease their burden. He has a deep understanding of the fact that we all belong to each other and none of life’s more painful lessons are wasted if they can be turned into learning about how to help others.

The King of Cups is gifted with empathy, intuition and imagination and able to express his emotions through the Arts. He is the most nurturing of all the Tarot Kings. As always, this card could point to any gender (this King is more than happy to move beyond the binary gender paradigm!).

In general, when it comes to the Kings and Queens, we are talking about people who are middle-aged or older but people do not always mature in a linear fashion, so a younger person could also express these qualities. When they do, it is often indicative of having overcome quite severe childhood abuse or trauma.

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
~ Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

A tendency toward addiction could become the downfall of a King of Cups personality type, especially if they do not honour their own sensitivity but seeks to numb or alter it with drugs and alcohol.

Affirmation: “I open my heart to understanding the suffering of others.”

King of Cups Prayer

Dear Mother-Father God (or whichever higher power you acknowledge), thank you for all the lessons that lead to mastery of emotions and ever greater levels of compassion for Self and others. Help me to actively express this compassion today. So mote it be!

Correspondences for the King of Cups

Zodiac Sign: Pisces (first two decans) and Aquarius(final decan)

Element: Fire of Water

Archangel: Michael (Angel of Fire) and Sandalphon (Angel of Pisces)

Gemstone: Amethyst, citrine and turquoise

Scent: Water lily

The King of Cups in Love and Relationships

Sensitive and caring, this man is often found working as a caretaker in some capacity. He could be a counsellor or a male nurse, a psychiatrist, tarot reader or a massage therapist. One thing is for certain, he is definitely in touch with his feminine side!

Intimacy is everything to this guy. He enjoys discussions about feelings the way an ordinary bloke enjoys a game of football and he’s also heavily drawn to anything mysterious. And before you ask – Yes, he’s a rare find!

Why? Because emotional maturity and genuine care about others come at a cost… especially for a man! How will a boy who is told that he is being a girl when he cries grow up with his feminine side integrated without shame or guilt?

Unfortunately, traits that are perceived as feminine in boys are still ridiculed by society and that is the real reason why there are so few men who feel comfortable owning their emotions.

Pros: He strives for authenticity in all that he does as well as in all his relationships.

He truly enjoys non-sexual intimacy.

Looking after you and meeting your needs comes naturally to him.

He is empathic and will care about everyone that matters to you as well as you.

Love-making is almost always a spiritual experience with this man.

He’s not afraid to be ‘different.’

Cons: Could put your parents off by virtue of being ‘too unconventional.’

Can be centred on the needs of those in his immediate circle of friends and family to the detriment of the rest of humanity.

Is prone to depression and personality disorders because of his extreme sensitivity.

Can struggle with practical matters… like paying bills on time.

Possibly passive-aggressive and/or manipulative.

Can find it difficult to say ‘No’ and could fall victim to female psychic vampires.

Type of date he prefers: Cosmic. Any environment which allows for a meeting of souls is fine to him. There will be lots of eye-contact and soul gazing. Star gazing might add to the ambience and don’t be terrified if he declares that you two are soul mates on the first date. It’s not just a line with this guy – being highly intuitive, he may have picked up on a past life connection!

Time from your first date until you introduce him to your parents: He’ll want to meet them as soon as possible if he senses that they are an important part of your life. I told you he was unusual!

Wedding style: Emphasis will be on the vows. Know them by heart so that you can gaze into the eyes of your beloved as he gives himself to you unconditionally. It’s a thing of beauty.

Type of dad he would make: Being highly empathic, he’ll make an excellent dad and step-dad. Don’t be surprised if your kids will feel more comfortable confiding in him than in you!

His best match: The Queen of Cups as a) she already swims in the same ocean of unconditional love and boundless imagination, and b) is equally turned on by lingering eye contact and soul gazing. However, for practical reasons he should probably pair up with the Queen of Pentacles.

His worst match: The Queen of Swords who a) is likely to ridicule him for being ‘overly sensitive’ and b) likes her intellectual conversations to be free from emotional and spiritual ‘fluff.’

King of Cups as Situation, Challenge, Opportunity and Action Advice

Situation: Emotional sensitivity is in focus but can have gone overboard with addictive behaviour as the central issue (surrounding cards will tell you which it is)

Challenge: Maintain sound boundaries while not losing any empathy, be temperate, don’t sacrifice yourself

Opportunity: Great relief that comes from being with kindred spirits, finally feeling understood

Action Advice: Walk a mile in someone else’s shoes