When I created The Emperor card I sat for a while channeling the energy of a confident crow and imagined the traits a leader of our loud, raucous Seattle murder of crows would need to possess to keep order and protect.
The Emperor crow stands firm on his sword that rests upon the head of a ram, a symbol of Aries and the astral ruler of The Emperor, but do not confuse his confidence for malice – he is a fair and wise leader. With power however, comes a great responsibility. The Emperor crow has both the intellect and social skills to pull a group together. He knows to maintain order and respect he needs to be firm but doesn’t peck unnecessarily at those who are beneath him –so to speak. He is not only a leader but also a protective and caring father. The Emperor crow commands devotion from his followers because he is fair and unbiased, not because he has the loudest caw.
The four white feathers adorning his neck symbolize wisdom attained through life and experiences. The sword he stands firmly on signifies a sharp intellect and analytical approach when facing decisions. The Emperor’s posture with his ability to see over the clouds, represents attaining a goal through perseverance. The mountains behind him represent a solid foundation of beliefs and integrity. He is a picture of dominance and security and embodies a father-like masculine energy that serves as a guiding force for all those who follow him. It is the responsibility of The Emperor to pass his wealth of knowledge down to the fledglings knowing someday one of them will need to take on the role of leader.
When The Emperor pays a visit, it might be because you are not using your intellect when making a decision and are too focused on what the heart desires without seeing the situation from a rational or analytical point of view. You may want to take a moment and see where in your life the energy of The Emperor is being directed, whether it is finding the leader within yourself or in that of a mentor.
Reversed, it is The Emperor’s shadow side that you need to watch out for because it is his ego and thirst for power that has become his driving force. He is in a nutshell a bully and uses his sharp intellect not to better the group or protect it, but rather for his own gain.
We all have had experience with this architype, whether it is the domineering boss, or even a childhood bully who likes to rule the playground. Standing up for ourselves by facing down an “Emperor” can feel like a daunting task, but it may be that is what this card is suggesting. It may also indicate that we are the one who is being domineering or too rigid in our thought-process.
As a mom of an 8-year old daughter, this card is not restricted to only boys, I have witnessed both the positive and negative energy of The Emperor in girls as well especially when they are figuring out the “pecking order."
When creating this deck my goal is not so much to focus on gender as it is with masculine versus feminine energy because each of us contain a mixture of both. Typically, The Emperor is male, but this card may also be pointing to a female authority figure or in the case of the card being reversed a “mean girl.”
If The Emperor appears, ask yourself –why the royal visit?