II of Cups

Copacabana, Bolivia

Keywords: Partnership, romance, heartfelt decisions, relationships, balance, nurture, feelings,caring, respect, understanding, peace, cooperation, collaboration, compromise, reciprocity

Reversed: Independence, failure to choose, break-up, fresh start, imbalance, negativity in relationships, inequality, uncooperative, uncompromising







The II of Cups is a always a crowd favorite when it shows up in a reading. This is because almost every deck I know of will have a peaceful scene on it, something imbued with love perhaps, or just something serene. I have a lot of pictures to choose from with two vessels, but I think I’m settled on this ice cream shot for a couple of reasons. First of all, ice cream may be physically cold, but there is a warm, fuzzy feeling to going out for ice cream that resonates with the meaning of the II of Cups. Ice cream makes us feel happy, safe, luxurious, and young. The II of Cups mimics that joyful experience of an ice cream date, pointing out the light-hearted, nurturing, lovey feeling of life.

The second reason I choose this image is because this shot is from one of my first dates with Kristen. Going out to ice cream is a great date, especially for a first one. It can be quick and care-free and doesn’t involve alcohol, which can be good for a first date 🙂  The II of Cups often indicates the beginning of a romance and an ice cream date can certainly be romantic. This card brings up a lot of the feelings and issues that come up at the beginning of a relationship. You’re getting to know each other, feeling a bit dizzy in love, and experiencing that euphoria of being seen and cared about. You’re also making decisions at every second about whether or not you can get along, if you life their personality, if you can relate on important issues. There is a lot at work in a new relationship that brings up the decision making power of the II cards.


Sierra Nevada Brewery                                        Chico, California, USA

The II of Cups is a nurturing card. If it isn’t about a romantic relationship for you, it may be about your friendships or how you interact with your family. You will be able to express or show how deeply you care about your loved ones and be able to receive their love in return. You can get together to enjoy the quiet wonders of life, or make important decisions based out of love and respect. You feel compassionate and caring, working to cooperate and get along swimmingly with those around you. Your ability to compromise and reach decisions that meet the needs of everyone involved is high at this time.

The II of Cups isn’t exclusively about love and romance though. If you are doing a work or career reading, this card is an excellent indicator that a business deal will be clinched, a job interview will be go well, or a healthy partnership can be formed. There is a positivity and inspiration around your work life right now. It may turn out that you make deep friendships at work, or even start a business or job working with people you already love, a spouse or a dear friend. You can find some real community in the work place and achieve big results through collaboration. The positive aspect of this card is also a good indication of financial stability. You are making good decisions for your finances and your work will be lucrative.

II of Cups reversed:

II of Cups Shadowscapes Tarot

II of Cups rx
Shadowscapes Tarot

The reversal of the II of Cups indicates an imbalance in a relationship. If it is a romantic relationship, you may feel like you are giving, giving, giving, and receiving very little in return. Conversely, you may find that you do not reciprocate the strong feelings of a partner and are thinking about ending the relationship. Either way, feelings are out of wack in your relationship and you need to take a step back and reevaluate. What is this relationship based on? Is there a deep, abiding love here or just a passing love? Do you want to start making compromises to make this relationship work is it best to move on from this relationship before more feelings are hurt? Every relationship we have is meaningful and teaches us important life lessons, but not every relationship is meant to last a life time.

Of course, this feeling of imbalance, non-reciprocity, inequality, or negativity could apply to any personal relationship. You could be missing a long lost friend, feeling shut out by your child, unappreciated at work, or outcast from your friend group. Perhaps you are feeling overworked or over-relied upon. All your friends or colleagues are dumping their negativity on you and you want to get some independence and some me time to focus on your own peace, growth, and wisdom seeking. When the II of Cups comes up reversed in a reading, take a good look for imbalances or inequalities in your relationships. There are steps you can take to improve those relationships, even if stepping away from them for a time is the best idea right now. You deserve mutual respect and understanding and it’s time to figure out how to get that.