Two of Cups: a Journey into Love

The fish do not merge. They are entwined, their bodies in harmony; yet they are discrete, each a whole world unto its own. Piscene interdependence. Or is that Piscean interdependence? Whatever it is, they seem to be able to live out of the water even while breathing it.

They are caduceus inverted, bringing something down from above. In this case, theirs is a dedication to bringing divine love down into created form. I don’t think about this; I am asked to feel it. Two fish, two lotus flowers, two cups. Coupling. Duality. The experience of one thing through the other; both perfect. One lotus flower sits over the other, connected by a green stem. As above, so below, movement both ways.

If there were no fish, the water would simply cycle between the two blooms, an endless loop with no witnesses to it. The presence of the fish, however, divert the two streams of water into the two cups. There is animate life, consciousness incarnated, experienced, expressed in togetherness.

The colours draw me in deeper: pinks, oranges, golds in the foreground — all of the figures and objects. They are rich and vital, present, and yet there is no grandstanding or attention-seeking among them. All seem to be equally important. The only thing that my eye keeps getting drawn back to because it feels more visually insistent is that green stem. And then I see the purpose of this. It is the connector. Unlike the streams of water, it is solid. It needs to be there, or the upper flower (flow-er) would not exist. It takes the water from the depths of the ocean and transports it up to the lotus. What lies in the depths — in the very heart of me — is what connects me to Goddess.

The background is blue meeting yellow at the horizon, which then deepens into green. There is a clear division between sky and sea, and it seems as if an invisible Sun is reflected in the upper part of the waters. The Sun — illuminating what lies beneath it even if it might not be immediately apparent. Its presence implied, I can look to the water to find its brilliance; likewise, I can feel into my own wateriness to experience the brilliance of its searching rays, the ones that cut through the darkness and show me that what lies at the heart of it all is something more beautiful than I might have imagined.

This is the coming together of two who surrender to the flow of love and let it move through them. As if in recognition that they are diverting water away from the lower lotus flower, the two fish take it upon themselves to feed it, water flowing out of their mouths and into its waiting petals. They give their bodies to divine love while channelling part of it back so that the flowers continue to live.

Do we feed the gods when we come together in an act of devotion?

The Two of Cups is eros. It is what happens when two unite. It is passionate, it is joyous. It is so compelling, so unforgettable, that it, and its apparent loss, have inspired some of the greatest artistic creations.

However, when entered into with a sense of balance and an understanding of being a part of something greater than simply two, when each brings themselves fully to the encounter, when there is no subsuming into the other — knowing that it is not a reflection of ourselves that we see in front of us but another living, water-breathing entity — then flow happens.

Our cups runneth over. And gods are fed.

 

[Image: Two of Cups from the Thoth Tarot, by Aleister Crowley and Lady Frieda Harris © US Games, Inc.]