Reclaiming Sensuality with The Pentacles

Sensuality and Sexuality in Tarot Hand in Milk Bath with Flowers

The Pentacles often get a bad rap. Pigeonholed into matters of finance and career (they are also called coins, after all) these cards quickly become stagnant and stale. Where’s the romance? The passion? The adventure?

Yet the Pentacles have a hidden side, on that’s not always brought to light in tarot books. You might be surprised to hear that, of all the suits, I see the Pentacles as the most erotic of the bunch.

“What?” you might say. “Not the phallic wands or juicy cups?!” (Note: I strongly doubt anyone would peg the analytical swords as lush romantics! Sorry, swords.)

To get into my mindset, it’s important to remember that Pentacles are associated with the element of earth. It governs the everyday, the material… the physical. And how do we engage with the physical world around us? Through our senses, our bodies, and our presence.

This means that the Pentacles govern the feeling of the wind on our faces, a lover running their fingers along our skin, the taste of a delectable fresh peach, and the smell of an intoxicating perfume. Just look at the imagery in these cards. There’s depictions of work and labor, yes, but also characters fully feeling themselves.

Take the King of Pentacles and the Nine, for example:

Minors Pentacles King.jpg
Minors Pentacles 09.jpg

These cards show figures unabashedly sure of themselves, luxuriating in life. Taken to the extreme, these traits can become wasteful, but at just the right level they acquaint us with our true power, presence, and capacity for pleasure.

Becoming aligned with our physical self aligns us with our connection to the world around us. What does this feel like? What does my body have to say? What feels good to me and what makes the people around us feel good?

How can we be aware and take joy in the riches around us if we’re not aware of the riches in ourselves and our bodies?

I see this group of cards as an invitation to take our pleasure seriously as well as to look for pleasure all around us. It doesn’t have to be through sexual eroticism alone. There’s plenty of sensuality in all aspects of life and, as these cards demonstrate, tapping into it makes life so much more lush, joyful, and satisfying.