Card: La Templanza / Temperance
Numerical Value: 14
Astronomical Symbol: Sagittarius
Depiction: In the Tarot de la Santa Muerte, "La Templanza" depicts the white cloaked Santa Muerte holding two golden cups, one in each hand, pouring a red colored substance from one cup into the other. She appears hovering on a white cloud, over wide open green terrain. The sky behind Santa Muerte appears split in two, with one side dominated by a black rain cloud and dark sky, and the other side dominated by a bright rainbow and clear skies.
Symbolism: La Templanza represents moderation, self restraint, and patience. The cloak of the Santa Muerte in this card is white, a harmonious and peaceful aspect of Holy Death. The two cups in Santa Muerte's hands are here symbols for balance, as they share the contents poured from glass to glass. This imagery of pouring the contents of one glass into another symbolizes moderation and self restraint - for instead of filling one single glass to excess, Santa Muerte instead distributes the contents from cup to cup. The substance being poured is red in color, a symbol for love. The cups appear gold, with golden cups being a symbol for wealth and abundance. This red substance poured between golden cups represents a holistic balance between the physical and spiritual.
With white clouds typically a symbol for peace and hope, the fact that Santa Muerte appears standing firmly planted on a white cloud symbolizes that moderation and patience will provide a foundation for peace and hope moving forward. The green terrain over which Santa Muerte hovers represents the earth below, and the sky behind her represents the heavens above. Santa Muerte's placement between heaven and Earth is a further symbol of balance and self restraint, choosing to exist between two planes rather than entirely in one or the other.
The duality of the background sky, with one half featuring a dark rain cloud and the other featuring a bright rainbow, is here another symbol for balance and patience. Dark skies are a necessary evil that make it possible for us to appreciate the beauty of bright rainbows, and as much as you might think dark skies will never end, they are often necessary before we can experience our brightest moments.
In a reading upright, La Templanza represents a period of biding time, finding balance, and exercising patience. Instead of rushing toward one side of the spectrum, you may find more peace and harmony from looking for balance between two extremes or waiting for a better time to make a final decision.
In reverse, La Templanza represents a lack of patience, rushing into decisions, or lack of balance - which may be the cause of current negativity. In this case, La Templanza is a sign that you should look for opportunities to bring balance back into your life through the exercise of patience and self control.
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