On the Ace of Cups, a hand reaches out from a cloud holding a golden chalice. Five streams spill forth from the cup, nourishing the lotus flowers in the water below, while a dove drops a round disc with a cross symbol into the cup. The Ace of Cups reflects the Water element, but it’s unclear if the W on the side of the cup represents Water, or if it represents something else. However, the dove and cross on the white disc appear to describe the soul’s descent into physical reality, with the cross describing the balance between the vertical path of the soul and the horizontal plane of the physical world. The horizontal line may also, in some readings, describe polarity.
The Ace of Cups represents the spiritual genesis of our emotions, compassion, and love. It describes emotional abundance and the expression of grace in our relationships with others. When this card appears in a reading, it asks us to allow our emotions to flow from a higher state of awareness, instead of reacting from ego. Reversed, it indicates a lack of empathy, and perhaps an inability to express love.