Full Harvest Moon: Knight of Cups

Knight of Cups from the Lumina Tarot; check out that gorgeous Ouroboros!

Knight of Cups from the Lumina Tarot; check out that gorgeous Ouroboros!

Happy Full Moon! As it’s the full moon closest to the Autumn Equinox, this moon is called the Harvest Moon. It’s officially the first full moon of Fall! (Have you noticed witchy folks are obsessed with the seasons? It’s because of the Wheel of the Year, which you can read about in this post…) Tonight’s full moon is in Aries, a passionate fire sign. Yet the autumn is associated with water, and I’ve picked a very watery card indeed for this moon. So there is a nice balance here of fire and water: active and receptive energies, force and fluidity.

The Knight of Cups is a soul-searcher if ever there was one. Knights are action-driven; they’re seekers. They go out in search of what they want; they explore. Since this is the Knight of Cups, and cups are about emotions, this guy is a heart-based searcher. He’s led by his heart, by his romantic pinings and emotional queries.

Sadly, I now think of Christian Bale whenever I see this card, because of his role in Terrence Malick’s very bad movie Knight of Cups… I like Terrence Malick, but this movie was a lot of Christian Bale just following around slinky women to a voice-over of vague thoughts…

Honestly, though, however disappointing that movie was, it did sort of get the vibe of the Knight of Cups; he’s a romantic, an artist, and is driven by love. This card lets us ask ourselves, how often do we allow ourselves to lead with our hearts? Can we un-ironically, unabashedly seek what our heart desires? Can we let ourselves be a romantic?

I relate to this question a lot. In the realm of romance, I can’t decide if I’m a cynic or a believer; I oscillate between the two. Sometimes I’m sure that soulmates and romance are real and beautiful and achievable. Other times I think it’s all a scam, and all marriages end in divorce, and we’re kidding ourselves to think we can find someone to accept and love us forever. So, yeah, I don’t always relate to the Knight of Cups…

But when I do, it is magical. We don’t have to be Knight of Cups all the time, after all. Maybe we can embody his starry-eyed earnestness here and there. And sometimes this requires bravery. Yes, cynicism has a place, but sometimes, cynicism is cowardice. Sometimes we’re cynical because we’re scared. When that’s true, maybe we can be brave. In the Lumina Tarot guidebook, this card’s subtitle is “be bold in your love”. Not “be realistic in your love”. Bold, people, bold!


How can you be bold in your love, in honor of the Knight of Cups and this full moon? How can you lead by what lights up your heart? Remember, this doesn’t necessarily have to do with romance. Cups are about emotions in general, and creativity, so anything that lights up your feelings or gets you creatively excited is what this card is about. As Michelle Tea says in Modern Tarot: “Something glamorous is on the horizon, something you must say yes to. This could be a social activity or a job or a promotion that increases the glamour in your life. It also could represent a period of intense artistic inspiration.” Inspiration, glamour, emotions: this passionate Aries moon is bringing us into these realms, guided by the bright-eyed Knight of Cups.

What will your autumn be like if you lead with your heart right now? How might you fill up your heart as we move into this darker half of the year? The Knight of Cups inside you knows… how can you tune in and listen?

Blessed be!