The Five of Pentacles is a card that may not be particularly welcome when it shows up in a reading, as it indicates loss, abandonment, and struggle. However, though the surface meaning of the Five of Pentacles may be bleak, it also represents hope and perseverance. I don’t believe any card in the tarot is a “good” or “bad” card; the cards are neutral until meaning is bestowed upon them by the reader. Welcome to our guide to the Five of Pentacles Meaning.
What this card does is bring attention to areas in your life where you might be struggling with loss, lack, or abandonment, which allows you, ultimately, to begin to move into a place of healing. When you recognize the problem, you can begin to make changes to solve it.
Fives in Tarot Card Suits
In tarot numerology, Fives are an indicator of contraction and change, often unpleasant. As the Fours indicate stability, Fives can show a loss of stability and balance, representing changes that need to be made in whatever arena of life their suit represents. Fives can also show the impulse to maintain stability, thrown out of balance.
Think of five pillars holding up a structure. Only four are needed. What is the fifth one for? Does it help maintain the structure or is it just for show? Is it actually throwing the structure off balance? These are some things to keep in mind when dealing with Fives in the tarot.
The Suit of Pentacles
The Suit of Pentacles is the suit of the element Earth, and as such represents resources and things we can manifest in the real world, as opposed to thoughts, actions, and emotions represented by the other suits. While this is generally thought to be related to finances, as another name for the suit of Pentacles is the suit of Coins, in the broader context Pentacles and Earth represent any resources we may have; skills, support, and emotional intelligence can also be resources we use to further ourselves in life.
The Pentacles also represent hard work and fortitude, and the determination to manifest the life we want into the life we have.
Five of Pentacles Symbolism and Imagery
The Five of Pentacles features two destitute figures walking in the snow outside of a church. One is on crutches while one is wrapped in a tattered shawl, barefoot. They are both seemingly too focused on their plight to notice that the lavish stained glass window of the church behind them is full of light, welcoming them inside if they would think to ask for help. This illustrates the tendency in the Five of Pentacles to focus on our wounds of loss, abandonment, and lack, while ignoring our support systems and the help that is being offered to us.
Upright Five of Pentacles Meaning
Upright, the Five of Pentacles generally means lack, or worrying about lack, and being too focused on this to notice what you do have, or an unwillingness or reticence to ask for help when you need it. It also represents the courage to continue on when it seems you have little resources, and have the patience and faith that times of hardship will pass, and if you are grateful for what you have now, you never can truly lose in life. While this card can reflect external aspects of your life, it also represents the fear that can come up when you don’t think there is enough.
- Lack mindset
- Financial loss
Upright Five of Pentacles in a Love Reading
When this card shows up in a love reading, it can indicate that you are feeling abandoned, or unworthy of love. If you are single, it can show that your feelings of loneliness and unworthiness are turning into a self-fulfilling prophecy, as your insistence on focusing on what you lack is causing you to turn away or be closed off from things or people that can help you; even if you long to be in a relationship. If you are in a relationship, the Five of Pentacles can point to feelings of loss and abandonment inside the relationship, or money troubles creating a strain between you and your partner.
Upright Five of Pentacles in a Career Reading
When Five of Pentacles turns up in a career reading, it shows that you are struggling within your career – perhaps you are unable to make ends meet in the job you are in, or you do not feel supported by your boss or coworkers. Your mental resources could be low, or drained, by the current career situation, and you are unable to focus on anything but how hard things have been for you.
Upright Five of Pentacles in a Finance Reading
When the Five of Pentacles appears in a reading about finances, it is an indicator that things are tight right now – or that they appear that way to you. It can also indicate that you are overly worried or focused on your finances, which may actually create an unwanted manifestation of financial woes in the future. It is important to be mindful that you do not focus too much on what you do not have, for it can create a self-fulfilling prophecy. The Five of Pentacles shows up not only as an indication of lack or loss but also as a reminder that you are focusing too much on lack or loss.
Upright Five of Pentacles in a Home and Family Reading
If the Five of Pentacles turns up in a reading about home or family, it shows that you are not feeling supported by your family unit. You could be feeling shut out of family issues, or have abandonment or attachment issues due to inconsistent messages from your parents as a child.
Upright Five of Pentacles in a Health Reading
When Five of Pentacles shows up in a health reading, it can indicate that you are not feeling your best, and that you are feeling abandoned – by the healthcare system, by loved ones who aren’t taking your health seriously, even by your own body. Since the Pentacles suit is represented by the Earth element, it pertains to the body, and in some cases illnesses are present within us, such as autoimmune or chronic pain issues, that make us feel like our body has betrayed or abandoned us. Five of Pentacles in this position can illuminate such feelings you may be having.
Reversed Five of Pentacles Meaning
- Positive changes
- Overcoming adversity
- Lessons unlearned
The reversed Five of Pentacles can show that your times of struggle and hardship are coming to an end, that you are in a place of gratitude for what you have even when it seems like resources are tight. On the other hand, it can also show a tendency to be too focused on your wants and desires, and that you need to think about going back and taking in the lessons of the previous card, the Four of Pentacles. It can mean that, as opposed to being abandoned by other people in the upright meaning, you may be abandoning yourself, perhaps in favor of somebody else.
Some people use a method for reading reversals that doesn’t necessarily change the meaning of the card, as each card already comes with a rich meaning, but shows that this energy, in particular, needs to be paid attention to. Where the card is placed in a reading, the situation being read, and any cards accompanying it will make the appropriate meaning obvious.
Reversed Five of Pentacles in a Love Reading
If you receive Five of Pentacles in a reading about love, it is possible that you are being asked to pay extra attention to feelings of abandonment or isolation within a relationship. You could be abandoning yourself and your own boundaries for the sake of your partner, and keeping the relationship afloat while in conflict. It could also mean that you are overly focused on getting what you want out of a partner or relationship, and not yet ready to heed the lesson of the Five of Pentacles.
Reversed Five of Pentacles in a Career Reading
In a career reading, Five of Pentacles reversed can show that a period of struggle within your career, especially pertaining to feeling abandoned or unsupported, is ending. It can also mean that these feelings need to be paid attention to in particular, and put ‘on notice’ for you to work on in the future.
Reversed Five of Pentacles in a Finance Reading
When it comes to finances, a reversed Five of Pentacles indicates that financial hardships could be coming to an end. Since a reversal can sometimes be taken to mean that the lesson of a card is not ready to be learned yet, it can also mean that you should take more control of your finances, lest you lose control of them and come to a situation where you are deep in the Five of Pentacles lesson of loss.
Reversed Five of Pentacles in a Home and Family Reading
In a reading pertaining to matters of home or family, the Five of Pentacles in reverse often shows that you are coming to trust in the support of your family. It could mean that you are ready to heal an abandonment wound, but it could also mean that you have an unhealed abandonment wound that you are not ready to heal just yet. Reversals are ephemeral that way. Other cards pulled along with this one will make the answer clear.
Reversed Five of Pentacles in a Health Reading
When Five of Pentacles shows up reversed in a health reading, it can be taken to mean that you would do well to pay more attention to your health, and where you may be abandoning yourself in that regard. Perhaps you have been feeling stagnant and not caring for yourself in the ways you normally do.
The way to begin healing the wounds brought up by the Five of Pentacles appearing in a reading, when you are feeling lost or without resources, is to answer the cards’ invitation to embody the present moment. The antidote to this card is resourcefulness: Now that you have gotten past the scary moment of realizing what you don’t have, how can you begin to bring yourself out of panic mode in order to see opportunities and options you may not have noticed before? Are there resources available to you that you hadn’t considered before this moment? Are there favors you can call in? What can you do for yourself in this moment to make yourself feel supported, seen, and heard?
Question: What is the general meaning of the Five of Pentacles card?
Answer: Generally, the Five of Pentacles shows up when you are struggling with a lack of resources – whether that be financial, emotional, or otherwise. It indicates that you have been focused on what you do not have, rather than what you want, or what you do have. It also represents the fear of losing resources.
Question: Is the Five of Pentacles a yes or no card?
Answer: When the Five of Pentacles turns up in a yes/no reading, it is a very clear and firm “No.”
Question: Is there hope in the Five of Pentacles card?
Answer: While all Fives in Tarot represent times of hardship, there is always hope to be had. The clear underlying meaning of the Five of Pentacles is that, although you are struggling now, you are never truly alone in that struggle, and your struggles will not last forever. Five of Pentacles shows up to remind you that when you are struggling, there are resources in your life that are there to help you; it is up to you to take your eyes off of what you don’t have for long enough to find them.
While the Five of Pentacles, like all Fives in the tarot, is a card of contraction, it also brings a message of underlying hope. All that contracts must eventually expand. When this card comes up to bring attention to the areas in our lives in which we feel abandoned, it allows us to begin healing these wounds, and reminds us to reach out for help when we need it.
As the imagery of the card suggests, there is always support to be had. Asking for support is the first step to receiving, and creates a reality where we are open to receive abundance, and able to move into the Six of Pentacles, where we may begin to give that abundance back.
Continue reading related meaning guides to cards from suit of pentacles: