A woman, or an angel, is pouring a liquid from one jug to another.
The figure of Temperance is well known in all classical art.
Just as wine was diluted with water, so Temperance pours the liquid from one jug into the other.
For many esotericists, this card is the symbol of Alchemy, in particular distillation, the process by which man’s ignorant consciousness will be cleansed, obtaining a pure spirit, ready for initiation and knowledge.
Temperance is often represented with wings, to remind us, as for angels, of its role as a messenger of the gods. In this sense, Temperance is often the bearer of news, mostly good news, or news that will end up being positive for us. It may be news coming from outside, but it is still news of which we are the recipients, and that lays out various choices before us. In short, we will not have to “suffer” this news passively. Instead, we will decide whether or not to act based on what we have learned.
It can also represent becoming aware of a situation, a change of mind about a subject, influenced in a decisive way by another person (often a person we hold in high esteem). In this case, the pouring of water between the two vases, represents inspiration, the suggestion by which beliefs and opinions are transmitted from one subject to another.
The main meaning of the Temperance Card, however, remains that of balance, in particular of inner balance. It can indicate that the situation is destined to find a positive balance, or it can represent an indication to take action to find the right balance.
You can find other articles like this in the section:
“Meaning of Tarot Cards”