The High Priestess

high priestess tarot card meaning
Card image is from The Rider-Waite Tarot Deck published by U.S.Games Systems, Inc.

Tarot Card Meaning: Inaction, Going Within, The Subconscious

The High Priestess tarot card is one of the more mystifying cards of the Major Arcana, full of secrets and mysteries as she beckons you to explore the unknown depths of your soul. We all have a rich, deep, dark inner landscape which we call the subconscious and unconscious and it is through the exploration of these levels of consciousness that we find solutions, insights and inspiration.

Our dreams are a rich source of insights into ourselves, as is meditation, hypnosis and guided meditative journeying. All of these things are appropriate for you to explore at this time. Listening to your body is also a valuable skill as our intuition is often felt in the form of physical feelings or symptoms. By listening to the body we can reconnect with that old, wise part of ourselves that can guide us toward the best decision or action.

Sometimes we unconsciously try to shut off our intuitive side by grasping for petty distractions like watching TV, surfing the internet, texting and β€œkeeping busy”. The High Priestess is here to calm your fears of this inner voice and let you know that there is a whole other world that you can tap into and benefit from.


  • Your inner voice of wisdom is trying to tell you something
  • It is time to quiet your mind and go within
  • A meditative, passive approach is needed


  • Are you often looking for distractions so you can avoid silence or stillness?
  • What is your intuition (or body) trying to tell you?
  • What advice does the eternal, ancient, wise part of yourself have for you?


  • Keep a dream journal and record your dreams
  • Go on a guided meditative journey to meet your higher self or spirit guide
  • Find a dark, quiet place to meditate for at least 10 minutes

More Tarot Card Meanings…

16 thoughts on “The High Priestess”

  1. Thanks for this! I’ve always found this card to be difficult to interpret. It helped to relate it to experiences of receiving higher knowledge and intuition. This is something I’m trying to work on personally. I’m becoming more and more sensitive to energy as I wander along my spiritual path. This is especially true when meeting people for the first time. I often have a very physical response, which manifests as anxiety, or sometimes the feelings that I’m physically buzzing with energy. I’m trying to shield myself and listen to this more intelligently.

  2. Hi, I am very new at Tarot and just recently become aware of my ability to pick up on others energy, especially when they are in need of extra kindness or positive attention. Anyway I’m drawn to the Tarot and I pulled a Hidden Truth Spread of the day and got.: 1)Theme of day – The Magician, 2) Hidden truth- The High Priestess and 3). Advice for the day- Ace of Swords. I had heard from someone that if the cards you draw feel wrong then you can reshuffle and lay new cards for the same spread so I did and got
    1). Knight of Swords
    2). Queen of Pentacles
    3).3 of Wands
    Now I’m not sure if I was on point by discarding the first draw because it is a similar reading except for small things and two Major Arcana cards as opposed to 3 Minor Arcana cards. Any insight that you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

  3. Hi Kate! πŸ™‚

    I’ve recently gotten interested in reading tarot cards and am hoping to make a set for myself. I am drawing the high priestess, is there anything visually you think I should include in my interpretation?

  4. Hi Kate,
    i did a seven card reading and the question i asked was: what does the future holds for i an my partner paul?. The response i got was
    pauls advice- ace of coins
    ann advice – ten of wands
    posible outcom-ace of cups
    love situation- nine of wands
    challenge and oppotunities-six of cups
    pauls issues-eight of cups
    anns issues- the high priestess
    pls kate throw more light on this reading and advice me on the next step to take.

  5. Hello Kate, I too have a similar question, I did a 5 card draw with a “Shadow Card” and I got
    1. Lovers
    2. 9 swords
    3.) High Priestess
    5.) Page of Cups
    Shadow card “King of Swords”
    I asked if this guy I know would show his emotions soon. I’m not quite sure as of the “sandwiched in” 9 of swords between the lovers and the high priestess. Can you help clarify this for me? I do so appreciate it!

  6. Hi Kate!
    You have helped me so much with learning the tarot cards and I wanted to thank you. I now known the basics and keep an ongoing journal for all me spiritual work, I do a lot of channeling work with my guides and angels, etc. I have found by integrating tarot into it has helped me tremendously with dealing with others as well as myself. I did a Celtic cross reading for my brother, his girlfriend and my mother, the weird thing is the three of swords continues to come up for all of them. They are close and are usually her with my mother as the third wheel at times. This causes some havoc at times as you can guess. I am thinking it has something to do with that, but not 100% sure.
    Thank you again…. your excellent at teaching!
    Love and light,

    1. Tara, that is wonderful that you are into channeling and that Tarot has helped you! I feel honored to be a part of your tarot journey πŸ™‚ I like your take on the 3 of Swords and it sounds like you have it right – its always significant when the same card keeps popping up!
      Good luck with your Tarot studies and I hope my website and teachings continue to help you πŸ™‚

  7. Hi Kate,
    I read your reply and it helps me to understand the message in my cards. Thanks a lot :”D
    I found your wordpress through Youtube. I started reading all your articles. They are clearly, easy to remember and practice at home. And I notice that you really spend your time reading all the comments so I plucked up courage to ask you about the cards.

    I live in Viet Nam, there’re also many people play tarot here but I couldn’t find it trusty to ask them.
    Forgive me if my English is not good πŸ˜›

    1. Thank you, Minh, for watching my videos and enjoying my site! I am glad I could help – good luck in your Tarot studies. Your english is great!

  8. Hi Kate πŸ™‚
    I just had the life purpose spread last night and my deck (I use Sun and Moon deck) gave me:
    Card 1: The High Priestess
    Card 2: The hanged man
    Card 3: 4 of pentacles
    Card 4: Princess of wands

    As I think, my life purpose is to explore my inner voice, understand my hidden side, know about my own world inside.
    After reading your article “The high priestess card”, I want to ask you about the role of The high priestess here in card 1. You don’t need to interpret all my cards, I just want to know if I miss something here and why the Hanged man is next to The high priestess.
    Thanks so much πŸ˜€

    1. Hi Minh,
      This is an interesting combo of cards! The High Priestess and Hangman are both very deep, spiritual cards. While the High Priestess is all about going within, the Hangman is about surrendering to what is and looking at life with a totally different perspective. Since the High Priestess represents how you relate to your life purpose right now, I would say that you take a very spiritual approach, listening to your intuition, honoring your own divinity and seeing the connection in all things. You personal life purpose (hangman) has to do with trusting in life at all times (even when it feels like things aren’t working in your favor) and transcending the things that keep you stuck in fear/the mind and seeing life through a totally different lens. I would say you are quite connected with your purpose, since the High Priestess seems to be supporting the Hangman here. Hope that helps!

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