Justice | Tarot Card Meaning & Interpretation

Justice

Keywords for Justice 

FAIRNESSBALANCE
INTEGRITYEQUILIBRIUM
TRUTHKARMA
HONESTYACTION/REACTION
RESPONSIBILITYCAUSE/EFFECT

In the image on this card, we see Justitia, the Roman personification of Justice, seated on her throne. She holds a double-edged sword in her right hand, representing choice—the need to make decisions and to act on them.

She sits between two gray pillars, between which is suspended a purple veil. The background behind this veil is yellow, the color associated with the element of air and the power of truth and knowledge.

In her left hand, she holds the scales of justice, which represents our need for balance, equilibrium and harmony, especially between the principles of cause and effect. It is related to the principle of karma, which on some level, is nothing more than the cosmic law of action and reaction in effect. 

As mentioned earlier, the figure on this card is representative of the Roman Goddess Justitia. In contrast to most of our modern depictions of her, she is not blindfolded, but instead, stares out directly with eyes wide open. 

She sees all, every action, every consequence, every contribution to the karmic cycles of cause and effect that bring our experience into being. She asks of us one thing: that we, too, see the world with eyes wide open. 

Whether we would like to or not, ultimately most of us will be forced to acknowledge the truth of our actions when we are presented with their inevitable consequences.

Interpretation of Justice in a Reading

When this card comes up in a reading, it often indicates a situation where the principle of justice is present as an active, mediating force.

In certain circumstances, it can indicate a situation where justice has indeed been served. It may seek to remind us that we may have gotten exactly what we deserved or needed here, although we may at first be reluctant to admit that this is the case.

It can also indicate a need for greater equity and accountability. Justice counsels us to review our part in the affair in question with absolute honesty and integrity. Sooner or later, we must take responsibility for our actions. Ultimately, only by acknowledging the full truth of our past actions will we ever be able to move forward beyond them.

This card can also speak of the need, at times, to hold others accountable. Taking responsibility does not always mean an admission of culpability. There are times when we have found ourselves the victims of injustice, and it is then that we must take action to remedy the ills inflicted upon us. 

Otherwise, we could find ourselves in a cycle of harm that we may be unwittingly perpetuating by refusing to stand up for ourselves and hold the necessary boundaries between self and others.

In essence, the practice of justice in our lives is ultimately about being responsive. It involves seeing the links in the chain of cause and effect that we are caught up in, and making the decision to exercise our free will in a way that is ultimately empowering and leads to greater freedom. 

We are often confused about what we must do to begin holding ourselves and others accountable.

We have this idea that in order to create change, we must prove how someone has been wrong and demand immediate punishment.

This is a roadblock to our change. This is what blocks us from being better people.

When we know that we will punish ourselves, or be punished, in a way that is unforgiving and without mercy, we become unwilling to look at ourselves and the ways in which we may have caused harm.

Instead, we cling to denial. We push away anything that would make us stop and pause to examine our behavior, for fear of the pain or destruction to self this would entail.

Compassion is NOT an avoidance of accountability. It is the the PRECURSOR to accountability.

When we are able to look at the ways in which we have harmed ourselves or others in a way that accepts the context of where we were at, that acknowledge our full humanity and the limitations of our perception, only then we have the capacity to do better.

You can create space for your full complexity to exist, even while acknowleging ways in which harm was done.

No one is ever entirely good or bad. No thing exists in a vacuum.

When we hold each other tenderly, it creates space for change. It nurtures accountability. It is a source of continual growth & evolution.

Today, you can practice seeing without rushing to judgement. You can practice understanding with care & concern. You can practice seeking justice without demanding destruction.

Justice without mercy is not justice. Accountability requires faith in our shared humanity. Let’s do this with care & concern, from today forward.