As a reminder, the suit of cups is driven by feminine energy and channels the power of emotions and feelings in every shape and form. Scholars and academics have connected the suit of cups to the classical element of water, and most of the cards from that suit embody the symbolic attributes of this element, one way or another.
Seven of Cups card: Traditional meanings
This is a rather unusual card in the suit of cups, channeling part of the fiery creativity usually found among the cards in the suit of wands. The raw and wild creativity is nonetheless filtered through the emotional prism of the suit of cups, for a result that is coherent with the overall message of the suit. Through the seven of cups, the Querent can access a whole new world of wonders and imagination but should remember to avoid the lure of constant daydreaming that can keep them away from truly experiencing their life
Upright: Dreams, imagination, illusions, fairytales, and lucid dreaming.
Reversed: Confusion, being out of touch with the real world, and never-ending daydream.
Upright Seven of Cups card
This is yet another rather whimsical illustration that can be found in the Rider-Waite-Smith(RWS) Tarot deck. A silhouette is standing before seven chalices as if he had to make a choice. The core thematic is a mirror image of the four of cups scene where the protagonist also had to make a choice between several options.
The overall tone of the illustration of this minor arcana card is quite different here. While he turns his back to the reader, his lack of choice probably comes from a hard time making a decision between several fantastic looking artifacts, (jewels, a snake, a small dragon…) whereas the man in the four of cups was clearly not interested in making a decision himself.
As a clear echo to the wild contents of the various chalices in the illustration, the seven of cups represents imagination and dreams. However, the inability to choose between several equally valid options might create a lot of confusion overall. This creative effort nonetheless differs from the one that could be found in various arcana from the suit of cups, of a more fiery and driven nature and temper… The source of creativity in the seven of cups is more connected to primal emotions and feelings, something slower and less flashy but usually gifted with more depth.
Reversed Seven of Cups card
The meaning of a reversed Seven of Cups in a reading highlights the very unlikely nature of what the figure in the illustration seems to be reaching out for. Relying too much on imagination and dreams might be a way to lose touch with reality as a whole, or become excessively withdrawn in order to escape everyday life. Pushed to the extreme, it might lead to an absurd situation where any concrete decision would be carefully avoided, to then relive these moments in their mind and playing out the different variations of what might have been.
Seven of Cups and love
While the seven of cups is a nuanced card in and of itself, when it is drawn in a love tarot reading the specific energies and meaning of the card are usually detrimental to a healthy and fulfilling relationship. Indeed, even if there is a chance for something to happen, the seven of cups might trap the Querent within his own aspirations and dreams.
Projecting himself into an idealized version of a future together, he or she might actually never open their heart to the one they love for fear of rejection and be content with a kind of “what if?” that might never get solved. The only way out would be to recognize this flaw and fear of commitment for what it is and use willpower to push through the last shreds of doubt. While the outcome of a relationship is never certain, even rejection is better than endlessly pining for something or someone that might never come.