Temperance is Number 14, the fourteenth Trump or Major Arcana Card in a traditional 78 Card Tarot Deck. It is closely associated with the energy or ‘emanation’ of the astrological zodiac sign of Sagittarius. The card’s image most often depicts an angel standing with one foot in water and one foot on land, pouring two substances from one vessel to another, an historical symbol of virtue. Temperance is about finding the synthesis between opposites, ‘tempering’ hot with cold, hard with soft, heart with mind, physical with spiritual. It is concerned with the blending of two disparate substances and creating a third wholly new substance, for example combining the metals copper and tin results in the production of bronze. It is the reason that the sign Sagittarius is so linked with Temperance, by melding together horse and man the wise and passionate Centaur is created. Mixing wine with water moderates the intoxicating effects of the alcohol.
If the Temperance card appears to you, whether in a reading, or you pull it from the deck, or even reading this right now, you are being asked to open yourself to balancing opposites, or finding the middle ground, of ‘tempering’ extreme behaviour. For the artist, Temperance is a sign that adding a new method of expression to the work process would be of benefit, for the workaholic it is a message to make time for relaxation and leisure and for the party animal to learn the reason for the saying ‘all things in moderation’. Perhaps, you are being asked to take on the role of moderator in a dispute or to realise that not all differences are irreconcilable. The Temperance card shows up when there is a need for a new creation either externally or internally that makes use of a combination of opposing energies.