A scene of celebration framed by four wands standing upright and a garland hung at the top. A man and woman are in the distant centre, holding up bouquets of flowers. Further off in the distance are dancing villagers with the village occupying the rear. A bridge of sorts is depicted on the right.
The four of wands is a positive card to receive. On first glance it looks like the celebration of a marriage ceremony. The bride and groom leave the wedding reception on honeymoon, the villagers waving them off. Raising bouquets of flowers in jubilation, the bride and groom have crossed over a bridge and follow a path that leads to the four of wands.
In readings, the Four of Wands indicates a celebration of some kind most probably centered around the concept of a relationship. It need not necessarily be a romantic relationship but could revolve around a business partnership, meeting of minds, mediation or contract for example. While success is indicated, we should be wary that the Four of Wands is very much a mid-way card. There is a long road ahead and the success suggested by the Four of Wands is one very much of the initial stages of a marriage. While the newly weds will enjoy the honeymoon and treasure the memories, there is the rest of the marriage to work on.
There is a strong suggestion in the Four of Wands that there will be a profound change in our circumstances. That the couple have married hints of the type of change we can expect. From single people to a couple forever intertwined with each other is the permanent type of change suggested. This is reinforced by the bridge depicted along the right hand side. Crossing a bridge is a type of threshold or border. We have gone from one land to the next.
Fours signify creativity in a more firm footing, coming after the finalisation of the first triad of creation. Fours are reflective of the combined energy of the first three sephiroth on the Tree of Life and the condensation of that energy to our lives. We can look forward to fulfillment on a deep level. This card is an important milestone in our journey.
The Four of Wands reversed can indicate a delayed celebration or success. There may be factors obstructing us from achieving peace and happiness. Strife or arguments in the family, unhappy unions, and stressful situations need to be resolved before we can move forward. It warns us that we need to work on our relationships in whatever guise they take so that we can enjoy the celebration that should have been forthcoming.
At its worse, the Four of Wands reversed may be warning us of the ending of a relationship. Contracts may be broken, arguments over business arrangements will break out, divorce or separation are all possible. I would be hesitant in suggesting that this is the first meaning of the Four of Wands reversed given the relationship between Fours and the first triad of creation. While it may signify a breakdown in communication or strife, the dispute is one of a step in our journey rather than the end result.