Based on the traditional Rider-Waite tarot deck, the High Priestess represents quiet power, secret magic, and mystery. She sits on a throne, draped in religious references: a scroll of divine law on her lap, a cross on her chest, the pillars from the Temple of Solomon on either side of her, and the veil of the temple behind her (decorated with pomegranates, a link to her underworld sister, Persephone). The papal tiara on her head ushers the female divine into traditionally male spaces; think of Pope Joan, who reigned for two years in the Middle Ages, disguised as a man.
When the High Priestess shows up, she brings reassurance that spiritual enlightenment and inner wisdom are available to you behind a thin veil of consciousness. “Stillness is called for, Michelle Tea writes in Modern Tarot. “No matter what may be happening around you, you are to remain calm, prioritize serenity, and make no sudden moves [because] you do not yet have all the information…This is the High Priestess’s forte—the slow reveal of deep knowledge that changes or enriches a situation…It is a time for studying mysteries, especially the mystery of your own self, your self behind your self, your secret selves, the ones you dream about, the self who generates intuition. The High Priestess calls for a bit of hibernation, for time to allow thoughts and creativities to germinate without distraction and external influence.”
She is, perhaps, the fiercest of females.
Single-strand embroidery on black fabric, using silky DMC. Framed in a repurposed, hand-painted black frame, approximately 6x8 inches.