The figure of Justice sits upon a stone seat between two pillars. She is dressed in an opulent red gown decorated with yellow trimmings around the collar. She wear a crown with a clear stone set into the centre over her third eye. In her right hand she holds an upright sword, the tip of which we cannot see. In her left hand she holds a set of scales. Behind the figure of Justice hangs an orange curtain with a yellow sky visible above it.
The figure seated in the Justice card is often said to be the Goddess Astraea which is sometimes seen carved into court houses. Not only is she a symbol of supreme justice, she also represents purity and innocence.
With Justice sat between two pillars and the clear third eye stone, this card echoes The High Priestess. The allusion to the High Priestess and to the Goddess Astraea puts us on notice that this card isn’t about human law. It is about divine justice, the rules of the heavens. There is an ultimate moral code. The scales are perhaps a reminder of the ancient Egyptian belief where Ma’at would weigh the soul against a feather of truth to decide whether the person would be granted entry into the afterlife.
Justice sits squarely in front of us. Her gaze is clear and constant. She sees through any lies that we tell ourselves. Justice can be the uncomfortable truth – but she is always the truth. The question is, can we meet her steady gaze? Justice in a reading can indicate karmic situations that set the record straight. Note that karma isn’t about crime and punishment, it’s about understanding life lessons and spiritual development. This card is about accountability.
If you take out the Fool card and then lay 3 rows of 7 cards of each of the Major Arcana in order, Justice is the central card. She is the hinge, the centre point through which we must pass in order to continue on our journey. There comes a time in life we must reset the balance, weigh up what has happened and deal with the consequences of our choices.
Ruled by Libra, this card alludes not only to weighing up our decisions, it also speaks of the heart. To move towards the next phase of life we need to be ‘pure of heart’ and have a clear conscience. Through Justice we understand how our thoughts, deeds and actions affect others. We must be comfortable with our past, forgiving either ourselves or others if necessary, as well as making amends if possible.
When Justice appears in a reading, you are being asked to accept the truth of a situation. It may simply mean that it’s time to be true to yourself. Through truth, balance and order are regained. Examine your conscience and be honest with yourself.
Justice can show up to let you know that things are as they are due to a higher universal order. She lets you know that things are as they are meant to be in the current circumstances. Justice also is a guide to help you understand that all actions have consequences and that where you are now is the result of previous decisions. Therefore what you do now affects the future.
Sometimes Justice shows up when you are in the process of making a life-changing decision. If so, it’s about ensuring you have all the information, all the facts to hand before weighing everything up. Take your time to listen to all sides of an argument if relevant. Remain objective. Play fair. Stay in line with your own moral code. Act with integrity. Do what your conscious tell you is right.
On a more mundane level, Justice can show up in a reading when there are legal issues to attend to. You may be applying for a licence or mortgage for example or doing your taxes! In legal matters, Justice suggests that the judgement will be fairly given.
If you are going through a legal matter, Justice reversed may indicate that not all the information is available yet for judgement to be passed. There may be a delay or proceedings may be more drawn out that you anticipated. Sometimes Justice reversed may indicate the decision doesn’t go in your favour but look to the surrounding cards for further indications.
When Justice is reversed, she may be telling you that you don’t have all the facts to hand, something is being ignored or untruths told. Justice reversed can indicate dishonesty. It may be time to be honest with yourself or with another. Avoiding honesty is upsetting the balance. It may be that you are trying to avoid a situation or consequence but the scales may have tipped too far.
Maybe you have been bending too far to the wishes and whims of others and consequently your true values have been compromised. Justice says it’s time to set things straight.
It may be that you are feeling life is unfair. What do you need to do to bring Justice right side up again? Check the surrounding cards for clues to action. Perhaps you have made a mistake and now the consequences are plain to see. Maybe you are punishing yourself thinking ‘everything’s my fault’. Perhaps you are putting the blame on others instead of taking responsibility for your actions.
Sometimes Justice reversed can indicate that your emotions are affecting your judgement. Step back a little. Listen impartially. Don’t take things personally. Perhaps your own biased opinion is getting in the way or you have very fixed ideas of ‘right’ or ‘wrong’. It’s possible that you are being too harsh in your judgements. You may be seeing things in black and white terms and missing the point.
I embrace the truth
I accept responsibility for my own decisions
Keywords and phrases
Upright Truth, fairness, equality, harmony, honest judgement, moral code, divine law, clear conscience, objectivity, action and reaction, decisions and consequences, paying your debts, cause and effect, accountability, integrity, balance, karma, weighing things up, reason, final judgement, verdict, justice is done.
Reversed Life isn’t fair, ‘everything’s my fault’ black and white thinking, unjust, dishonestly, guilt, unfairness, devoid of morality, subjective thinking, biased opinions, ‘the blame game’ judgementalism, missing the point, delayed judgement, unwanted consequences,