In the 2 of Cups, we see the coming together of two people. In moonlight, they look into each others eyes and toast their new relationship. The Ace was the seed and this is the manifestation of a relationship in its first stages.
Does this card speak of just romance? No, not necessarily. The 2 of Cups can instigate friendship or good business relationships, depending on which cards fall around it or what the question dictates. It could describe a healthy and balanced working partnership or the mutual love and respect of two siblings.
As with all cards, when paired up, new interpretations can be formed. Just one extra card can accent the 2 of Cups and provide context and information which could prove extremely useful.
What about if the 2 of Cups is joined by The Lovers?
Well, I would say that this combination would definitely pertain to a strong relationship, emotionally and physically. If the first card pulled is the 2 of Cups, then we can assume that a friendship or a new meeting has the potential to turn into a full-blown love-affair or even marriage. Choosing who we love is a very important decision (‘choice’ being an old and traditional meaning for The Lovers), so between these two cards, a big step will be made.
But what if the cards are the other way around?
When The Lovers steps out first in this pairing, we are looking at something quite different. Maybe this is the relationship which has lost its spark. Have the couple realised that they are now more like friends than lovers, deciding to cut their losses and seek passion elsewhere? Is this the twosome who got together too quickly and are now considering getting to know each other properly? Relationships can go through many phases. People change, so these cards could represent touching base and getting to know each other all over again; it might even signify a second-honeymoon for some.
Of course, not all pairings with the 2 of Cups are going to be favourable. What about if it sits with more ominous cards, like The Devil or Death?
When The Devil pairs up with the 2 of Cups, we could very well be looking at a destructive relationship. Even though we can not see the chains, there is a strong influence over the person who is being read for. More often than not, the person stays in a bad or abusive relationship by choice. Something is keeping them there, which they feel as if they need. Maybe they have lost their own self-esteem or are even frightened to leave their partner. Money might be another reason for keeping them there, since the querent may be afraid to go it alone or is dependent on their partner’s purse-strings.
Death is a scary card for many and most people would be fearful of seeing it come up in romantic readings.
With the 2 of Cups, Death could literally mean the end of a relationship. Is this a bad thing? Some may already know that a relationship is over or on it’s last legs but do not really want to admit it, even to them self.
Alternatively, with the 2 of Cups, Death could signify the ending of one phase and the beginning of another. It could describe the transition from being somebody’s girlfriend to becoming their wife.
There are so many different ways of looking at the cards when they pair-up. Mixing your knowledge of each with your intuition can become very enlightening. For example, how can we blend the energies of the emotionally-driven 2 of Cups with the earthy 10 of Pentacles?
If the reading was centred around business, this combination might concern closing a profitable deal with a contact.
If the reading was grounded in work, then it could be speaking about a promotion, a bonus, or accepting a new job with a big company.
© Steven Bright Tiferet Tarot 2014
Illustrations by Steven Bright