Four of Pentacles At A Glance
Keywords: Hoarding, scarcity mindset, insecurity, hoarding, stability, boundaries, reckless spending, generosity
Element: Earth (the physical, our bodies, health, resources like money, time and energy)
Four of Pentacles Tarot Card Description
The Four of Pentacles is the fourth card within the suit of Pentacles. It is a minor arcana card within the Rider Waite Smith system of tarot which is recognized as being the original tarot deck and the system that most modern decks are based off.
Within the traditional imagery of this card we see a king sitting on a plain gray throne. It looks very uncomfortable and not adorned in lavish dressings the way that the other thrones in the rest of the tarot deck are. Around his body are four coins or pentacles.
Pentacles are gold coins with the protection symbol of the pentagram (a five-pointed star enclosed in a circle) stamped onto them. In tarot Pentacles represent money wealth and abundance. The plainly dressed king holds one pentacle possessively to his chest.
One pentacle balances precariously on his head and the final two rest securely under each foot. His whole body is making very sure he is in possession of the pentacles at all times. However this means he cannot move.
He is frozen in place by a fear of losing his wealth and riches and subsequently his life is one of insecurity and misery.
Four of Pentacles Upright Meaning
When upright the Four of Pentacles warns us not to cling desperately to and hoard our resources. These things in and of themselves cannot bring us happiness.
Though it is true we need money to survive in this world we do not need to live with a constant fear of scarcity. We should employ tactics to help us save where possible and work to earn enough to provide for our lifestyles but we can allow ourselves freedom with some of our unspent income so that we actually enjoy our lives.
It is very easy to become a slave to our possessions and it is in this that the Four of Pentacles warns us to avoid. We work in order to live a good life, we do not live simply to work so we must remember to serve ourselves with what will bring us enjoyment and not merely our survival.
“I don't live to work; I work to live.” - Noel Gallagher
Four of Pentacles Reversed Meaning
The Four of Pentacles suggests we are generous with our resources (our time, money and energy) and that we have struck a good balance between acquisition and use of these hints. But it can also suggest we are at extreme ends of this spectrum by either giving or hoarding too much.
When reversed the Four of Pentacles can denote over spending, emotional burnout or feeling time-poor. Even if we have the best of intentions we cannot go on acting in this way because it is unsustainable.
As with all cards in the Pentacles suit they refer to riches like our money and possessions but they can also represent any other resources that care for our body.
This can be food, safety, a warm home and even clean clothes. Pentacles can also symbolize resources we have that aren’t tangible like our time, energy, health and mental wellness. This means when the Four of Pentacles is reversed it is suggesting we could be overexerting any of these resources.
So exerting too much energy could mean our health may be at risk, an unhealthy relationship could be draining our emotional capacity or affecting our mental health and so forth.
“We’re totally guilty of doing too much at once, all while trying to manage the noise in our heads that says we’re not doing enough.” - Vanessa Autrey
Four of Pentacles: Yes or No
The Four of Pentacles is mostly seen as a no card. It asks us to refrain from overexerting ourselves in anyway and suggests waiting for our resources to build before we act.
It is still a no when reversed but could suggest we are closer to being ready to accept than we are when it the Four of Pentacles is upright.
Let’s Break Down the Four of Pentacles In Our Lives
How the Four of Pentacles guides us in different facets of our lives and the specific advice it gives in these areas.
Four of Pentacles In Love
The Four of Pentacles in love readings may not be the most positive card to receive but it still offers valuable advice. It can represent our own or someone else’s emotionally unavailability.
Someone may be pushing others away due to a fear of commitment or perhaps because of personal insecurities. It could create needy behavior. A person asking much more than a partner can reasonably be expected to give.
Reversed Four of Pentacles says the opposite: someone is giving way too much of their love, time and energy away. Their insecurities could instead lead to codependency issues which ultimately is still draining for their partner/loved ones to deal with as well as the person themselves.
The Four of Pentacles reversed suggests turning that love and energy within and give it back to self because no amount of external affection can fix these insecurities. It is only the person themselves who can provide it to themselves from within.
Four of Pentacles With Money
The Four of Pentacles in financial readings can suggest we are hoarding wealth or have crippling insecurities around wealth and money and this is leading to disordered actions that negatively affect our lives.
Reversed the Four of Pentacles forewarns that we could be giving away too much of our funds even to good causes or accidentally overspending in other ways.
The balance simply does not add up and we must reduce outgoings wherever possible.
Four of Pentacles At Work
The Four of Pentacles in career readings suggests we are unable to work effectively to the best of our ability due to money concerns. We are not our best when we are stressed and finances are easily one of the biggest stressors in life we face.
It can also signify we are not devoting enough time to our work to see the progress we were hoping for.
Reversed Four of Pentacles warns us we are pouring too many of our resources into a career path or role that is not working. It suggests that we cut our losses and recuperate any assets wherever possible.
The 4 of Pentacles reversed can also indicate this could be a good time to consider diversifying our time into multiple part-time jobs instead of one that demands our time in full.
Four of Pentacles With Others
When we ask social questions about the world in general and receive the Four of Pentacles it says there may be some unwillingness to invest our time in social events.
This means we could be working too much and not making time for our loved ones or feeling jealousy and bitterness to others because of our own circumstances.
Reversed the Four of Pentacles urges us to switch our mindset from one of scarcity to one of abundance.
This is easier said than done but it is a habit that can be practiced daily and in time becomes the new normal way to think which not only feels more positive but leads to more productive actions that bring progress in our goals and further reinforce the belief of abundance.
Four of Pentacles With Self
The 4 of Pentacles answers internal questions we have by suggesting we might not be acknowledging our own strengths and victories. We could have an unfair and cruel perception of ourselves and should face these thoughts when they arise with more positive ones.
Reversed the Four of Pentacles represents overcoming financial and other insecurities we used to hold. It confirms we are going in the right direction of accepting and healing the scars and trauma that financial stress can leave on us.
Four of Pentacles As Feelings
The Four of Pentacles feels like financial insecurity and the urge to hoard any income or resources we have.
We can feel like we are a slave to our possessions and trapped by our financial obligations.