Judge-y Cards (Justice and Judgement)

An angel blows a trumpet as people-shaped spirits rise into the air to join her.
from Shadowscapes Tarot
Woman holding sword in one hand, balancing scales in the other.
from the Ellis Deck

Justice and Judgement might be the most-frequently compared (or questioned) pair of cards in the majors.

What I see them having in common is (the potential for) clear sight.

True justice means knowing what’s really going on. Judgement Day (the biblical one this card is based on, where sky-daddy God does accounting on all our souls) is when all the truths of our hearts are brought into the light for all to see.

But they also have very different foci, so clarity just represents their overlap.

Here are a few songs to show what I mean.

For Justice (Key 11 in most of the decks I prefer)

It’s about making distinctions. That sword you see in so many iterations of the card cuts between differences.

[“How does it feel” sung by Avril Lavigne.]

This highlighting difference can be polarizing or build understanding (The depiction of Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy in this video is a good representation of both applications).

Understanding differences is important to justice in this time, as always, because if we always “treat everyone the same” we of the dominant culture will continue to center ourselves and our view of the world (as “normal”), running the risk (or exhibiting a myopic arrogance) of not believing the lived experience of marginalized people.

Justice invites us to admit what we don’t know.

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