Feb 22, 2022 • 10M

Episode 008: The Emperor Tarot Card

How Can You Be A Leader For Yourself?

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Miriam Rachel
How do mental health and tarot with some astrology connect? You will discover how they do and how you can use tarot to gain insight into mental health. Additionally, when it comes to managing mental health, validation of struggles is essential, and that you will get from this podcast!
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The Emperor is the most masculine card in the set as it represents authority, discipline, order, stability, and self-control.

When this card shows up in a reading, it is suggestive that your life is in order and you are the one who is in charge, as this is what you need to see at times to gain some confidence.

This also can be indicative of outstanding accomplishments that resulted from being so disciplined as well as hard-working.

The Emperor also makes it clear that you are the one who is setting up your own rules as well as your boundaries.

This card rules leadership, which suggests that you are in this role and position.

You are more powerful than you realize and organized. If you are not at this point, then it is a reminder that the potential is there.

The History Of The Emperor

The Emperor is number four out of the major arcana cards in the tarot deck. The Emperor has an exciting ancient meaning to it.

Much like many other old, mystical things throughout all periods, there are varying stories and legends behind them.

It's one of the reasons why people to this day still fear or believe in what happened during these specific periods.

The Emperor was once thought of as a king and a god--a perfect being that should be worshiped by all means necessary.

So much to go into detail about history that it could keep someone reading for hours.

When drawn upright (for example, when doing a tarot spread), its meanings can be incredibly positive or negative, depending on the question.

Multiple factors go into play when looking at any given cards meaning in a spread, Emperor included.


With certain cards interpreting the Emperor's meaning can be tricky until you get used to what each card means in its upright form and then compare it to their reversals meanings.

Some examples of questions that the emperor tarot card may answer are:

Will I get a new position?

Am I an influential person?

Later on, I will go into that when I cover how the Emperor can help you!

But, for now, let's talk about the appearance of the Emperor.

What Does The Emperor Look Like?

The general appearance of the Emperor is a male with long golden hair, wearing a large crown while holding either a wand or a decorative staff-like shape (it's not always clear).

The Emperor also wears this unique gold headband with a gem in the center.

He is wearing a blue outfit with golden trim and designs on it, but over that, Emperor has a red cape or robe-looking thing going all the way down his back.

So the Emperor has this whole shape where he looks like he's engulfed by a red-golden light from about waist up.

The Emperor also stands next to a dark-colored throne--it may be indigo blue at times. Other times it's much more blackish.

Now you know what the Emperor looks like. Let's talk more about how he plays a role in Risa Green's life.

As you know, she does not feel that she has any control over her life. She does not know anything about setting boundaries.

She absolutely has no leadership skills whatsoever. The Emperor demands respect.

She does not because she does not think she is worthy of it. Someone who has firm boundaries would not help out their neighbor while they have too many other responsibilities happening in their lives as she does.

And even then, if she knew how to create boundaries, she would also delegate help for her parents instead of being the one to be there for them while she has other issues going on.

So, therefore, would you say that Risa matches the description of the Emperor in reverse? Let's find that out now.

Emperor In Reverse

The Emperor tarot card reversed often means that whatever plans or power once there is now gone.

When reversed, Emperor usually means you have no real influence in whatever you're trying to do--you can't "play the part" as much as you'd like.

The Emperor reversed also means that someone or something is trying to block you from getting to your goal--the Emperor in his reverse form may be seen as the opposition in this sense.

Also, it can mean there is a lack of self-control and discipline. It can also represent immaturity or being manipulative.

The Emperor tarot card can also mean that you're feeling victimized by others, especially in a work setting.

If the Emperor comes up reversed in a spread, it's very likely your co-workers are purposefully blocking off your progress to get ahead, and they don't want you to take them out, so they will stab you in the back when it counts. For sure!

The reversed Emperor can also show you feel trapped/imprisoned by some aspects of life--this could even result in self-sabotaging behaviors because of how unhappy the Emperor makes you feel.

So, emperor tarot card reversed means you're on the receiving end of some power. Therefore, the Emperor in reverse matches Risa to a T.

She has always been the receiving end of someone else's control and cruelty.

She never did anything to stop it from happening.

The Emperor in reverse also means she lacks control of her emotions as she struggles with emotional regularities as anyone with mental illness often does.

That is, if they don't get the proper help for their mental illness, and we know for a fact she refuses to do anything.

She is an emotional eater and will not help resolve that. She likely is dealing with consequences from that, too but won't do a thing about it.

She cannot set boundaries and become a leader in her life or instead refuses to accept that she can do so but does not want to learn.

She keeps allowing others to walk on her. And I will tell you right now that I get it because I have been there.

When you are an echoist like Risa is, and like how I was, the Emperor in reverse represents you.

And trust me, applying the Emperor into your life is challenging at best. But it is doable, with a lot of work. So how can you use the Emperor in your life?

How You Can Apply The Emperor Into Your Life

You basically have to learn to be your own leader. You have to learn self-discipline and self-control.

It is so hard to do when you struggle to stand up for yourself and allow others to control you.

I was just like Risa, but the catalyst for me was when my limits were crossed.

I had no choice but to get my son with complex special needs the help he needed outside of the home, and it was the best decision to make because he is doing very well and has a future.

He is best not to live here as I could not provide the help he needed though I did my best.

But the thing is, society expects mothers to be martyrs and will not look kindly upon those like me who do something so bold.

So my limits were pushed and basically gave society's expectations a big F U!

And I didn't stop being an echoist overnight, but over the years, I started realizing it was time to firm up my boundaries and knew that I had to deal with conflicts if I wanted my wants and needs met.

I admit I still struggle at times, but more often than not, I will not hesitate to say what I need to say if it is essential, and I have no problem with telling people "no," which I struggled with in the past.

Learning to use the Emperor in your life is one of the most challenging tasks if you struggle with firming up boundaries and being in control of your life.

However, it is essential to get what you want and need.

The best thing to do is to begin telling people "no" if you cannot or do not want to do favors they ask!

That is unless you feel you will get something out of it. But your time is not there for others to abuse.

That is an excellent start to showing yourself some good leadership. The next card I will go over is the Hierophant.