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Everyday Tarot Deck
Upright: Control, stability, security, possession, conservatism
Reversed: Greed, materialism, self-protection
The Four of Pentacles shows a man sitting on stool, away from his home town. He tightly holds onto his pentacles or coins in a very defensive posture as though he were hoarding them for fear of loss. One pentacle is balanced on his head, one clutched between his hands, and two are securely placed underneath his feet. He is making sure that no-one touches his coins! And, he cannot go anywhere because his feet are busy holding the coins down. In other words, this man is so tied up with his possessions, that he cannot do anything else. His eyes appear darkened from hard work but his mouth betrays the hint of a smile, which comes from the self-satisfaction of his accomplishments.
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Everyday Tarot Deck
The Four of Pentacles generates both positive and negative perceptions. On the one hand, this card signifies that you have accomplished many of your goals and have attained great material wealth in the process. However, on the other hand, there is a risk that you will come to value only material wealth, thus becoming possessive and/or greedy in ensuring that no-one else takes away your wealth.
The Four of Pentacles indicates that you are in a position where you are financially stable and secure with solid investments. You are very conservative about money and are not inclined to gamble in financial matters. You are very protective of what you have accumulated over time, and slowly and steadily you increase your net worth through saving money and safe investments. You are self-sufficient both financially and emotionally, as you often equate money with emotional security.
Although this card shows a practical and financially stable person, it often indicates possessiveness, greed and an overly cautious approach to life. You may be afraid to take risks, both financially and emotionally for fear of losing everything that you have attained so far. As a result, you may be vaguely unhappy and unfulfilled. Deep down you are starting to realise that you have sold out for a conservative and overly ‘safe’ approach to life.
Thus, the Four of Pentacles indicates one of the dangers of prosperity, the temptation to value money far above its real worth. If wealth and financial success lead to a miserly or penny-pinching attitude, then you have found yourself in a narrow-minded state where nothing is perceived to have any significant value other than money. This attitude is an expression of extreme attachment to the material ‘things’ of the world and is unhealthy in the long-term. Sadly, possessions have become your life and you now assess your self-worth based on how expensive your car is, how many bedrooms and flat-screen TVs your house has, etc. What this also means is that you must continually work hard to generate an income to sustain this standard of living and to sustain your ongoing obsession with material possession.
Sometimes, the Four of Pentacles can indicate an inflexible attitude that is resistant to change. You have already established a way of living that now works for you, so why change? Change appears to be a threat to your certainty, safety and security, and may place you at risk of losing all that is important to you. Any suggestion of doing things differently is therefore going to be met with resistance for fear of how it will impact your personal sense of security. Thus, you are more likely to favour tradition and tried-and-tested ways of doing things, rather than taking any risks at this point.
The Four of Pentacles can also indicate a need to control your environment. You want to be in charge to ensure that your world does not get altered or changed, and as a result, you demand compliance and you insist on having things your way. You want to create order amidst the chaos, to bring a state of calm and stability back into your life. However, the downside is that you cannot always have things your way and you may prove to be too much for some, isolating yourself from friends or family.
Reversed, the conservatism of the Four of Pentacles has turned to greed and stinginess. You are haunted by a fear of poverty that compels you to be materialistic. You are extremely defensive and self-protective materially and emotionally, fearful of opening up and trusting other people. You are very reluctant to spend money and you are keeping a very tight rein on your cash. On the flipside, you may be spending too much money and need to get a better hold of your financial resources.
In relationship reading, the Four of Pentacles reversed suggests that you have spent your time recently focused on career-building and material acquisitions, rather than your relationships. This approach to life has been quite successful financially but is very limiting when it comes to connecting authentically with others. You have created a prison for your time and your energy by building up this solid wall of work and financial responsibilities, and will need to release and escape from this to some extent if you want to focus on more personal issues. The important thing to realise is that success in your career is beneficial but only to a point. You may need to examine your life and determine what you can give up, particularly in terms of effort and time put towards work and other similar activities, so that you can have more energy available for developing personal relationships.
The Four of Pentacles reversed asks you to loosen your hold on your need for security and stability and step outside your comfort zone. While it will feel a bit shaky at the start, this is an important step in your personal development.