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5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning Love, Career, Health, Spirituality & More

The 5 of Cups is often viewed as one of the most challenging cards to receive in a Tarot reading. At first glance, the image on the card evokes a sense of grief, loss and disappointment.

Yet beneath its raw emotional energy, the 5 of Cups contains profound lessons on moving through life’s inevitable setbacks. By exploring its deeper meaning, we can learn to see the silver linings in our most painful experiences.

This in-depth guide will reveal everything you need to know about the 5 of Cups. You’ll discover its key meanings in different Tarot readings, as well as how to interpret it in matters of love, career, finances, health and spirituality.

By understanding both the upright and reversed meaning of 5 of Cups card, you’ll gain powerful insights into releasing past hurts and creating a hopeful future.

5 of Cups Key Facts

Key Facts
Card Number 5
Arcana Minor Arcana
Suit Cups
Element Water
Planetary Ruler Mars
Astrological Sign Scorpio
Upright Meaning Regret, grief, loss
Reversed Meaning Acceptance, moving on
Yes or No Interpretation No
Numerology Association 5 – Instability, uncertainty, change

5 of Cups Tarot Card Description

The 5 of Cups shows a lone figure standing outdoors with his back turned away. Before him are five golden cups, three of which have spilled over and lie on the ground. The two remaining upright cups are out of the man’s view.

A river runs behind the figure and a stone bridge leads to the other side. Dark clouds fill the sky, creating a somber mood.

The spilled cups represent loss, disappointment and disillusionment. The figure cannot see the full cups still standing, blinded by his grief over what has been emptied.

Yet the bridge invites him to cross over the difficult emotions of the past to reach a more fulfilling future. There is always hope.

The Upright 5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning

The Upright 5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning
The Upright 5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning

Love Relationships

The 5 of Cups often appears when a relationship has ended or changed significantly, leading to deep sadness and regret. There may have been a betrayal, sudden breakup or disappointment that shattered hopes.

Upright, this card reflects being stuck in the grief and anger over what you have lost. You may be obsessing over perceived mistakes, reliving old hurts or excessively longing for the past. These emotions block you from seeing new possibilities.

The 5 of Cups cautions against falling into victim mode or blaming others for relationship failures. While taking time to process and honor your feelings, remember that you still have love to give and receive.

Let the spilled cups be a lesson rather than a punishment. Then turn toward the full cups – new connections and joy that await you.


In career Tarot spreads, the 5 of Cups can symbolize rejection, missed opportunities and stalled progress. You may be dwelling on a lost promotion, being passed over for a coveted role or failure to reach an important milestone.

These work disappointments may damage your self-confidence and enthusiasm. But the card calls on you to shift perspective – do not lose sight of your skills and value because of one setback.

The two full cups in the image encourage you to refocus on appreciating your current position and capacities. Building on your existing talents will lead you to exciting openings soon.


Financially, the upright 5 of Cups reflects money and property lost through poor decisions or unexpected circumstance. Investments may have failed,assets decreased in value or a financial safety net was destroyed.

You may now feel overwhelmed by financial burdens and lack of resources. But remaining fixed in regret or shame will not improve the situation. Forgive yourself for any mistakes – they are learning experiences.

Shift focus to the full cups, representing resources still available to you. Develop creative income solutions and budget wisely. This is a time for practicality, not panic.


In health readings, the 5 of Cups can point to recovery from illness or injury. You may still be processing grief over abilities or vitality lost from the health crisis. Feelings of regret, anger and depression are normal.

Upright, this card encourages you to avoid dwelling only on what is gone. Instead, actively appreciate the physical and mental functions that remain and build strength through therapy, self-care and community support.

The glass is both half empty and half full. Each day, find small accomplishments to celebrate on the path to renewed wellness.


On a spiritual level, the upright 5 of Cups reflects deep disillusionment in your beliefs. You may feel lost faith, betrayed by religion or abandoned by God. Old assumptions have been shaken, causing painful emotions.

Yet the card calls you to eventually move through the darkness of disappointment to find new understanding. Explore different spiritual paths and see teachers in every experience, even difficult ones.

Trust there is purpose and beauty ahead, just as the two full cups still stand. Your faith will evolve and deepen through this period of spiritual crisis.

The Reversed 5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning

The Reversed 5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning
The Reversed 5 of Cups Tarot Card Meaning

Love Relationships

When the 5 of Cups appears reversed in a love reading, you are finally moving beyond the grief and anger of a past relationship. You have accepted its end or disappointment, releasing self-blame and moving forward.

There is now emotional space to notice new admirers and dating prospects around you. The possibilities still exist for true intimacy and partnership. Healing has happened.

In an existing relationship, reversed can indicate finally releasing resentment over past hurts. You are ready to apologize, forgive and restore lost trust. The relationship is strengthened as old wounds are aired.


For career, the reversed 5 of Cups shows recovering motivation and self-confidence after professional disappointments. You are gaining perspective that one failure does not define your worth or abilities.

Constructively learn from the setback and get clarity on your true passions and values. Then with renewed enthusiasm, actively pursue openings that better fit your strengths. Luck is returning.

You may also be settling conflicts or repairing damage in your current workplace relationships. There is light after the storm.


When financial loss occurs, the reversed 5 of Cups encourages acceptance so that practical planning can begin. Dwelling on mistakes or self-blame will not move you forward.

Catalog your current assets and resources – the full cups still present. Brainstorm creative income solutions. Seek professional guidance if needed. You have the power to slowly rebuild stability.

With pragmatic effort, the card indicates financial recovery is possible. Don’t lose hope.


Reversed in a health reading, the 5 of Cups shows that you have moved through the anger and sadness over lost health or abilities. Acceptance allows you to focus energy on progress and adaptation.

Rather than isolating in grief, you are sharing struggles and receiving key support. Each small gain is encouragement. Though losses may remain, you are emotionally ready to embrace the blessings in your current condition.


The reversed 5 of Cups reflects emerging from a dark night of the soul. Your faith has been tested severely, but you are willing to again open your heart and beliefs.

There is admission that no system is perfect, yet good can still be found. Increasingly, you can let go of resentment and sense spiritual renewal on the horizon.

You may seek different religious communities or forms of worship. The spiritual journey has storms, but calm waters return. Have hope.

5 of Cups Tarot Card in Yes or No Questions

5 of Cups Tarot Card in Yes or No Questions
5 of Cups Tarot Card in Yes or No Questions

The 5 of Cups typically indicates a clear “no” when it appears in yes/no Tarot readings. Its energies are just too steeped in grief, disappointment and stalemate to give an affirmative answer.

Upright, the card implies losses or failures that cannot be easily undone at present. These require time for acceptance and healing. Confusion also reigns when the 5 of Cups arises.

Reversed, the meaning shifts closer to a “yes,” as you are finally moving forward from former stalls or setbacks. Forging ahead is supported, but some residual mourning may linger.

Overall, this card remains unfavorable for yes/no questions unless appearing with strongly positive surrounding cards. Even then, proceed with caution before believing its “yes.”

5 of Cups Tarot Card and Numerology

In Tarot numerology, the number 5 is connected to the 5 of Cups. Fives represent instability, uncertainty and major life changes. This aligns with the 5 of Cups themes of profound loss leading to emotional turmoil.

Yet 5 also contains the energy of adventure, resourcefulness and new opportunity. When one path fails, we are driven to forge completely new ones. The 5 of Cups simultaneously warns of risk while unlocking creativity.

The number activities associated with 5 are:

  • Letting go of limiting assumptions
  • Welcoming change as a chance to grow
  • Being flexible in the face of lost stability
  • Trying new solutions without fear of failure

When the 5 of Cups arises in a reading, engaging in these practices allows the shifts it brings to become periods of renewal rather than only loss. The key is moving through the grief.

5 of Cups Tarot Card and Astrology

Within the Tarot, the 5 of Cups corresponds astrologically to Mars’ influence over the water sign of Scorpio. Mars rules conflict, aggression and war, while Scorpio is connected to shadows, secrets and the cycle of death/rebirth.

Together, these energies perfectly capture the painful transformation process depicted on the 5 of Cups. The card forces us to confront challenging emotions before finding healing.

In astrological practice, the time when Mars transits Scorpio is ideal for releasing old hurts and anger to allow deep renewal. We must bravely enter our own darkness to find the light ahead.

5 of Cups people are drawn to mystery, renewal, and probing life’s greatest questions – just as Scorpio rules investigating hidden depths. Their path is often through emotional burning to reach new life.

5 of Cups Tarot Card Combinations

The 5 of Cups takes on additional shades of meaning when combined with other cards in a Tarot reading:

  • 5 of Cups + The Star: Hope after despair. Renewed faith after crisis of belief.
  • 5 of Cups + 10 of Swords: Utter loss leading to complete renewal. hitting rock bottom then rising.
  • 5 of Cups + 3 of Swords: Heartbreak, infidelity, grief over lover’s rejection.
  • 5 of Cups + 7 of Pentacles: Financial or career setback. Re-evaluation to start over.
  • 5 of Cups + Judgement: Being called to higher purpose after great sorrow.
  • 5 of Cups + 6 of Swords: Moving on from trauma or family issues.
  • 5 of Cups + Queen of Cups: Emotional maturity to overcome loss.

The melancholy 5 of Cups is deepened by cards indicating betrayal, endings and severing. Yet combinations with regenerative cards temper the grief with optimism. As with so much in Tarot, opposing energies find balance.

5 of Cups Tarot Card Designs

The Rider-Waite-Smith 5 of Cups depicts a lone man in black robes, standing over spilled goblets. First published in 1910, this monochromatic color scheme has influenced most modern Tarot decks. The somber image powerfully captures regret.

Some contemporary decks render the 5 of Cups with even stronger symbolism. The Golden Tarot features the cups spilling from a broken tree – symbolic of lost stability and shattered dreams. In the Dark Grimoire Tarot, skeletal hands reach for the fallen cups, matching the card’s darkness.

But many newer decks also emphasize the two remaining cups. The Modern Spellcaster’s Tarotoverflows these cups with light, contrasting the shadows. The Shadowscapes Tarot shows the figure turning toward new horizons beyond the bridge – finding hope for the future.


Should I be scared when the 5 of Cups appears in a reading?

The 5 of Cups can seem frightening as it points to loss and pain. But it is a necessary card that initiates processes of acceptance, healing and finding new opportunity. Trust that its grief will shift to growth when you see it.

What emotions or feelings are associated with this card?

The 5 of Cups in Tarot is strongly associated with emotions of sadness, disappointment, and grief. It reflects a sense of loss and regret, as the figure in the card mourns the spilt cups. The emotions tied to this card are often about dwelling on what has been lost rather than focusing on what remains.

In a Tarot reading, what does it mean when the 5 of Cups appears?

When the 5 of Cups appears in a Tarot reading, it signifies a period of mourning and disappointment. It suggests that the querent may be experiencing feelings of loss or regret. However, it also encourages them to look beyond what’s been lost and find the potential for renewal and emotional growth.

Is the 5 of Cups a positive or negative card in Tarot?

The 5 of Cups is generally considered a negative card in Tarot due to its association with loss and sorrow. However, it also carries a message of hope and the opportunity for healing and transformation. Its interpretation depends on the context of the reading and the surrounding cards.

How does the 5 of Cups card influence one’s emotional state?

The 5 of Cups can influence one’s emotional state by evoking feelings of sadness and disappointment. It may prompt a period of introspection and a focus on past regrets. This card encourages the individual to acknowledge and process these emotions, ultimately leading to emotional growth and healing.

Can the 5 of Cups card suggest a need for healing and acceptance?

Yes, the 5 of Cups often suggests a need for healing and acceptance. It encourages the individual to confront their feelings of loss and regret and begin the process of moving forward. By accepting what has occurred and finding a way to heal, the card signifies the potential for a brighter emotional future.

Key Takeaways:

  • The 5 of Cups represents profound grief, loss and regret that shapes our lives and worldview. We feel emotionally shattered by severed relationships, failed dreams or spiritual crisis when it appears.
  • But the card’s deeper lesson is about processing loss to then embrace new possibilities. In its grief, the 5 of Cups motivates us to rebuild in creative ways aligned with our deeper calling.
  • By fully feeling the pain the card exposes, we move through it to renewed faith, purpose and joy. The past is fuel for rebirth.
  • When reading the 5 of Cups, avoid falling into victim mode or assigning blame. Focus on learning rather than punishment so you ultimately gain wisdom from the experience it reflects.


At first glance, the 5 of Cups Tarot card evokes the raw heartache of dashed hopes and severed bonds. We can easily fixate on the spilled cups – the disappointment and trauma that upended stability.

Yet in the image, full cups still stand. There are always new connections and joys that await us, even if temporarily obscured by loss. Each experience deepens meaning.

By fully processing grief when the 5 of Cups appears, we drain its bitter cup to then glimpse the positive possibilities ahead. What remains now becomes the foundation to build upon.

Derek Le
Derek Le
Derek Le, the passionate founder of Numerology Hub, is a respected figure in the numerology community. With a profound understanding of numerology's applications and significance, Derek is dedicated to providing invaluable insights and resources for self-discovery and personal growth. His multicultural background and love for badminton bring a unique perspective to his work, ensuring accessible and relatable content that empowers individuals to harness the transformative power of numerology.

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