Here we see a whale that has three eyes and three fins swimming up through the veil of clouds under the Triple Goddess symbol as illustrated by the three phases of the moon.
The number two in tarot is about balance, receptiveness, duality, contrast, identity, gentle negotiation, crossroads, expanding consciousness, the heart, partnerships and at times, extremes – usually in the pursuit of finding identity. It can also be the number of creative and psychic initiation depending on the choices you make and what your karma is.
A whale is the possibly the perfect choice to symbolize The High Priestess, especially given that she has three eyes and fins. Whales are linked with encouraging balance and appreciation of beauty. They are nurturing and devotional by nature and support communities. They are highly sensitive creatures and help people navigate emotional depths – depths that they may be afraid of but depths that hold keys and gifts for understanding the self and the universe. They can also help you manage the influx of emotions and input that can come from being extra sensitive at this time. Finally, whales encourage an expanding of cosmic consciousness, inviting you to ascend higher and tap into the vibrations of the ancient and future mysteries and open yourself to the wisdom there.
The whale’s ability to help you open up to the cosmos is further enhanced by the presence of the third fin and eye. This challenges you to see beyond the simple duality of things and consider a more spiritual way of seeing. To use the minds eye, to trust your intuition and go beyond what the world merely shows you – feel into the world and see what wisdom and knowledge is gifted to you. Embrace the unknown.
Note that nowhere does the whale ‘teach’ you. She is not a ‘helper’. Whales are the keeper of memories. She is asking you to remember back to before you were born when you were just a spark of consciousness – how did you know, feel and be that spark of light? What is your most essential truth and how does that connect you with the world now? Find your seat of love and look outwards from there.
The fact that she also has a third fin suggests she is encouraging you to walk through the world with the same sensitivity.
The clouds in this card represent the veil between this world and others (whether it is the underworld, or the world above – the High Priestess has the keys to them all.) They are also linked to the element of air. This encourages pairing deep feeling with coo, rational thought. The High Priestess can appear outwardly cool as she likes to judge and be logical as much as dip into her instincts. Clouds also symbolism change and messages from above. Be ready. Be open. Be thoughtful.
Above the whale there is the Triple Goddess symbol which is seen in the Rider Waite deck in The High Priestess’ crown. It is not uncommon for High Priestesses to wear the Triple Goddess symbol because it represents all aspects divine feminine including but not limited to expansion, protection, fertility, compassion, insight, knowledge and wisdom from a lifetime of experience, the stages of the moon and life stages of woman. It also is linked to being psychic, having higher than average intuition, creativity, and access to deeper mysteries and realities. It also relates to the birth, death and rebirth cycle. In the Rider Waite deck there were the pillars of destruction and creation so having this symbol of life and death is essential. The idea of creation and destruction can also be seen in the whale flying up through the air, at some point that whale will come down – such are the laws of life.The High Priestess often appears at a time when there is a significant choice to make. While we may think the decision at hand is not so huge, she is suggesting you look deeper. Now is not the time for action, now is the time for looking within for that deeper knowing – your intuition. It is time to consider the third way. While someone may come into your life that resembles The High Priestess and may also encourage deeper consideration, it is still a journey you need to walk alone. If you are open to it, your psychic powers are opening up. You might be dreaming more. If you wish, there is even deeper mysteries and secrets here to uncover. The choice is yours if you wish to receive at this time. However, trust the right things will be revealed at the right time. One does not control the beyond. But don’t get lost for too long in the lands beyond the veil – that decision is still waiting, you have many miles to go. Keep that head and heart balanced, extremes may teach us many things, but in the end, being true to ourselves and being LOVE is the most important thing.
Upright: Intuition, secrets, dreams, feminine energy, choice, balance, psychic powers and dreaming, emotional depth, quiet, stillness, decisions, patience, power, sexual energy, heart paired with head.
Reversed: Not listening to intuition or calling, rushing ahead, unbalanced, extremes, not trusting the self, feeling lost, hidden agendas working against you, stillness leading to stagnation, closing oneself off, emotionally overwhelmed.