Monday 15th April 2019: King of Cups

When the King of Cups appears it is often said that he is telling you to “master your emotions.” But this is, I think, a misleading reading because “mastery” of the emotions implies the deployment of will in the suppression or control of emotion. It evokes the “stiff upper lip” approach of the 19th Century English ruling class. Is it not the case that the King of Cups is fully engaged with his emotions and delights in, or even revels in, the pleasures of the moment and empathizes with the flow of the emotions of his court and his subjects. I think of the King of Cups as an archetype in the mould of Marc Anthony as Cleopatra imagines him after his death:

his delights

Were dolphin-like, they showed his back above

The element they lived in.

William Shakespeare, Anthony and Cleopatra, V: 2: 88-89

The mastery then is not of emotions but in and through emotions, just as dolphins cannot be said to master the ocean, but to be masterful swimmers in and through the ocean. Today, then, let us stay in touch with our hearts and engage others with empathy and humour, delighting in the interplay of emotional energy that occurs when two or more people engage openly with each other.

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