Exploring the Nine of Cups

Welcome to Tarot Thursdays! This week we will be exploring the Nine of Cups and how it can be used as a prompt or brainstorming in our writing.

Tarot is an interesting thing. It’s based upon symbolism and metaphors through imagery. With these images the subconscious mind is tapped into through the story provided. Not everyone gets the same thing from a piece of art. Each piece will influence each person in a slightly different way.

Introduction of the Card


The Nine of Cups is card number 44 in the deck and the ninth card of the Cups Suit in the Minor Arcana of the Tarot.

Let’s take a look at the following examples of Nine of Cups below.

Card Examples



L-c9Notice the similarities between them and take note of their differences. Do any of these move you more than the others? Take your time and allow these cards to tell you their story.

My Analysis of These Cards

It’s hard to say what the dragon is feeling in the Dragon Tarot card, but it is clear to me that in the rest of them that everyone is satisfied and content in the scenarios they are depicted in. They all appear to have what they want.

Themes of the Card

Each card has a set of keywords associated with it that serve as themes for its image. These keywords will vary somewhat depending on who you ask.

According to the Learning the Tarot website, the keywords associated with the card are:


You can learn more about what this site has to say about this card here.

According to the Biddy Tarot website, the keywords associated with the card are:


You can learn more about what this site has to say about this card here.

What this Card Means to Me

There’s nothing like the feeling you get immediately after a job well done. You’ve spend hours towards reaching a goal, and finally – FINALLY – you’ve made it. Whether it’s that first car, buying a house, finishing a draft – what ever it is doesn’t matter because it all comes down to that moment of being able to say, “I did it!”

And it feels just as good to watch someone else reach those milestones too. Watching your child master riding a bike or getting their driver’s license. Graduating from high school or college. These are happy and satisfying moments for a parent. It gives us comfort to know we did right by them. Somehow, despite – or maybe because of – all our worries.

It’s a very human thing to have and it’s something we should be bringing to the table when we write our characters. We should be asking ourselves, “What will satisfy them and bring them comfort?” And it will be these sorts of things that will help drive and shape them.

The keyword that I will choose for this card is: SATISFACTION.

Music Playlist

In this spirit of all this, these are the songs I have picked out for this card.


The Writing Exercise

This exercise is a free write. Permit yourself to write whatever comes to mind based upon the theme of this card. Choose a keyword or key phrase and run with it to see what you come up with.

I would love it if you linked or pinged back what you wrote so I could see where you went with this.

Happy writing!

Mythic Tarot by Liz Greene (Author), Juliet Sharman-Burke (Author), Tricia Newell (Illustrator) © 1989
Dragon Tarot by Terry Donaldson (Author), Peter Pracownik (Author) © 1996
Universal Tarot by Lo Scarabeo (Author), R. De Angelis (Illustrator), A. E. Waite (Designer) © 2001
Tarot of Dreams by Ciro Marchetti (Author), Lee Bursten (Author) © 2015

10 thoughts on “Exploring the Nine of Cups

    • Back in my senior year I think it was, so around 1994, I had a cousin who I looked up to and thought the world of give me a copy of the Mythic Tarot.

      She thought it was entirely bogus and didn’t want the deck anymore. I’m not entirely sure why she had the deck in the first place. She is 6 years older than me, and had worked in a book store so I’m wondering if she had gotten the deck upon release out of some promotional deal or something.

      But anyway, I found it absolutely fascinating. I think it was because that deck featured Greek mythology which I had always loved as a kid.

      So for me it was something that I was able to pick up on quickly. The cards in that deck told stories to me. Artists for centuries have been doing paintings and sculptures inspired by Greek and Roman mythology. I don’t think I could ever get tired of looking at it, you know?

      So for me, back then it was fun and just an on-off sort of thing. As the years went on, I found it helped me to think and just relax. Break that circular trap of anxious thinking I tend to get into sometimes, or to tap into my creative muse. Either way, it forces me to consider things in different angles I might not have on my own.

      But honestly best part in the whole deal is feeling like I have an entire art museum in the palm of my hand to look at and find inspiration from when ever I want. There are some truly talented people out there making decks. Just phenomenal artwork that I really admire. Ciro Marchetti is the one I admire the most right now.

      • Wow. When I was younger, I too wanted to be able to know the secrets of the tarot cards, or maybe be an expert in it.

        Really interesting story, I am really happy because you chose to share it with me. I am glad that you found something you enjoy doing. 🙂

      • There’s a lot with the tarot, but the nice thing about it – I think – is that you can go as deep as you want. You don’t need to learn all the systems to use it. I think there’s three.

        I’m comfortable with the Rider-Waite and I’m only now becoming familiar with Thoth. The third I believe is Tarot de Marseille.

        And that’s just the deck systems. You also have the symbolic correspondences to choose how far to go in depth with. The deeper and wider you go, the more complex and richer your readings become.

        Learn Tarot and Biddy Tarot are both excellent resources for beginners. The links I provide with my posts are their free learning pages. Their sites won’t steer you wrong if you’re interested in learning the Rider-Waite system.

        So what I’m posting here is from the perspective of using tarot for creativity and self care.

      • Thank you for enlightening my curiosity, it actually is very interesting. Although, I can’t say that I could have a connection to the tarot, it fascinates me a lot. 🙂

  1. Pingback: Exploring Emotions with Nine of Cups | The Art of Chaos

  2. Pingback: Self-Care with Nine of Cups – The Art of Chaos

  3. Pingback: Exploring Character with Nine of Cups – The Art of Chaos

If you enjoyed this post, or have some thoughts about it, please let me know!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.