Reflections on Elemental Energy

We have become a society of air heads.

That is not to insult our intelligence, but an observation of our glorification of the qualities the air element.

We value information, as our media fueled craving for content ranging from the trite to the profound, is one symptom of this. The air element is masculine in polarity, meaning it requires the projection of energy from the self outward. We project our ideas, fantasies, dreams, thoughts and language through our myriad forms of expression.

The air element in the Queen Up! system corresponds to the Queen of Wands (though in some traditions, Tarot readers associate Wands with Fire and Swords with Air). The Queen of Wands as the personification of Air element signifies the human intellect, our potential as creative beings and our capacities to learn and teach, to communicate, invent and express.

When we emphasize one element over the others, we lose balance and potentially, overlook aspects of our power. Who do we become as a society when intellect and ideals are given precedent over feeling, courage, stability?

Nature reminds us of the presence and significance of the four elements in their various forms, and the importance of balance among the elements. Who do we become as individuals or as a society when our own energetic alignment becomes imbalanced? The emphasis on air makes us prone to anxiety, also allows us to become intellectual yet emotionally detached. We end up living in our heads, or retreating into fantasy.


The fire element fuels our motivation and focus. It awakens passion of both the creative and destructive kind. Also a masculine polarity, fire energy allows us to project our will through action, to focus our mental air energy and translate it into the process of walking our talk. Emphasis on this element can make us susceptible to creating drama and conflict, dominating others or engaging in power struggles.

In Queen Up! The Queen of Swords corresponds to the fire element and personifies the best of this energy- discernment, courge, motivation and willpower, as well as the shadow side of this element. In less balanced forms, this energy becomes volatile. We are quick to anger and become eager to lash out. We also become susceptible to the all consuming energy of addictions.

To harmonize the qualities of air and fire, to keep the intellect and will from fueling a vicious cycle of self righteousness and self serving, we need to be able to connect with empathy to others. This is the gift of the water element. Water is associated with the power to nurture, heal, cleanse, and love. It’s energy is feminine in polarity meaning it is the energy of receiving from the outside in, taking in from the world and transmuting and releasing. The Queen of Cups personifies this energy in Queen Up! and is the archetypal mother and lover.

This power in it’s balanced form allows us to feel empathy and connectedness with all things. Also to heal on an emotional level. The water element brings us out of our minds and into our hearts to relate to others with compassion. When out of balance, our experience of this energy manifests in emotional blocks or depression. Codependency or toxic forms of relationship ensue.

When cultures prioritize the water element, we see matriarchal and cooperative institutions given precedent over competitive ones.

To help stabilize and ground us, we can draw on the power of earth energy. Earth provides our framework. It is the solid energy that sustains us in the long run. Also a receptive/feminine polarity, earth energy gives full physical form to our goals and is associated with abundance. This can be abundant finances, health or other life maintaining resources. In Queen Up! the Queen of Pentacles is the personification of earth energy and helps keep us rooted so we may build the foundations that will uphold us.

On a cultural/societal level, we can find a paradox. Cultures aligned with earth energy may value tradition as well as literally functioning in close connection to nature and the Earth. However when societies are entrenched in the shadow side of earth energy, they can emphasize productivity and conformity, devaluing individualism and personal/emotional needs.

When out of balance, the earth energy becomes too inflexible, unyielding and narrow minded. To balance this energy, we come full circle to align with air and expand beyond limitations.

For more information on Queen Up! and forming a personal relationship with the elemental energies, check out Queen Up! Reclaim Your Crown When Life Knocks You Down- Unleash the Power of Your Inner Tarot Queen (Conari, 2018).