Tarot for the Modern Reader
The Year of the Emperor: 2020

The Year of the Emperor: 2020The year of the Emperor. This is what we are looking forward to in 2020. We just ended a number 12 year which was a Hanged Man Year. Now we are entering the year of The Emperor. How does this work? Let's first look at how we calculate our year cards.
Calculating the Card of the Year Each Year
You may be thinking that Death follows The Hanged Man, so why aren't we in a Death year? As you can see, it's pretty easy to tell 2+0+2+0=4. In the previous year, we added up to a double digit number, 12. Although that also reduces to 3, if the number is between 10-22, we don't reduce any further when determining the year card.
When we enter a new decade, the pattern changes slightly. Although we are still going in numerical order, we often drop back down to the single digit number and start again, one card ahead of where the last decade began. For example, 2010 was a 3 year, The Empress. 2020 is a 4 year, The Emperor, and 2030 will be a Hierophant year, number 5.
With each decade, we both start one number ahead of the previous decade, and finish with one number later in the double digit sequence. And it's always the same root number. This decade we started with a 3, an Empress year in 2010. It closes out in 2019 with a 12, The Hanged Man (1+2=3).
The next decade (and all decades) follow suit. We begin with an Emperor year because 2020 adds up to 4. We will go through all of the cards in order until we reach 2029 which will be a Death year since 2+0+2+9=13 (and 1+3=4). Do you see the pattern? This also carries a decade theme of that core energy as well. This past decade had a 3 energy to it, the next decade we are now entering will carry that 4 energy throughout. It's interesting to see the larger pattern at work.
Looking Back First
Now that you know how each year is calculated, let's look a little closer at our previous year. We are now entering an Emperor Year (and decade), which is very different from a Hanged Man Year, and an Empress decade. Anytime you begin looking forward at anything (such as planning your new year), the advice to being successful always includes looking back and reflecting first on your previous year one last time.
So we are not only leaving a Hanged Man year we are leaving a decade that carried that similar 3 energy all throughout. A Hanged Man year can be a very passive year. Like the Empress, as a 3 energy, it is very passive and receptive. It is about waiting, not doing. It is about receiving, surrendering and allowing. You may have had a lot of downtime this year, whether you wanted it or not. You may have had to take a backseat and take other's perspectives into consideration more than you would have preferred. There was a lot of waiting, or for lack of a better term, "hanging around".
The Empress decade itself was a very receptive, yin time. It was a time that creativity may have been flowing for many. Many feminine themes have emerged. Any and all themes that have pertained to the Empress energy or the energy of the number 3 in general were favored. What worked well for you? What didn't? What do you want to take with you into the next decade, and what do you want to leave behind with the last one? We are now shifting gears and moving into a totally new theme.
A New Paradigm Arrives
We shift gears from the 3 energy to the 4. Oftentimes it's the case in Numerology that neighboring numbers are not necessarily complimentary energies. It can be a little unsettling or jarring at first to enter a new year (with a new number and card) which is going to be quite different from the one before. However in this case, we're entering a new decade with a new overarching theme that is also quite different then the one previous.
So while you may need a bit of time to adjust to the new energies, just know that they are here to support you, right on time, to meet the right needs for you, right now. We are moving from a matriarchal energy to a patriarchal energy. While this may seem frightening to some, given world events, I truly believe that all things happen as they should, in right time, for our greatest good. So I'm encouraging you to keep an open mind and decide how this year (and decade) is going to serve you best!
What an Emperor Year Might Look Like
An Emperor Year is going to bring a lot of action, right from the start. The Emperor is ruled by the planet Mars, who also rules the sign of Aries. These are our pioneers. This is where all things start. This is equivalent to the Suit of Wands in the Minor Arcana. Aries, being the first sign of the zodiac is actually the beginning point of our entire celestial year, and begins with the first day of spring on the Vernal Equinox each year.
So this is an excellent energy for starting new things. There will be a lot of fire energy involved, not just for the month this card (and sign) traditionally rule, but for the year as a whole, because this is our card of the year. Although you can certainly expect to see those efforts and outcomes magnified during this card's reigning time, Aries season. This generally falls between March 21-April 20, give or take a day or two depending on the movement of the heavenly bodies in any given year.
One period that will NOT be favored is September 9th-November 14th, when Mars is in retrograde. The period of time when this card's ruler is in reverse is a downtime, the energy will not be at full steam and many efforts you make during that time will fizzle out.
We'll have this pioneering, ready-to-get-something-started energy however, all year long. This will be an excellent year to start new things. Have an idea for something amazing that's been floating around in your head for awhile? An Emperor year is the time to give legs to that idea, you will have the cosmic support of the Universe to get it off the ground this year. Speaking of giving it legs, that brings me to my next point.
The Emperor Year is a 4 Year
The Fours in the Tarot are about stability. This is a year that you may find yourself trying to set up some patterns of stability in your life. I mentioned that this is the year you may be able to give legs to a dream. This is not only an opportunity to get something off the ground because you will have the drive and determination to do so, but it's also a time that you'll be able to create something stable. Think about the legs of a table or the legs of a chair. There are four. That's because this allows the unit to achieve maximum stability.
This is something that you'll be looking to prioritize in an Emperor Year as well, Stability. Fours are all about stability, and you need not look much further than the minor suit to see this. You will personally see themes from the 4 of the minor arcana play out in an Emperor year as well. The 4 of Pentacles is all about creating (and holding onto) that strong, secure and stable financial base.
The 4 of Wands is very grounding as well, even for Wands energy (this is what a 4 brings to the "table". Our 4 Wands are planted deeply and firmly in the ground, as are the tenets this card represents, celebrating milestones or other events that often require a commitment of some sort. In the Cups, our seeker is very carefully and deliberately using consideration and contemplation while appearing quite grounded, down on the earth in an abbreviated lotus pose. In the 4 of Swords, he is in deep rest. Fours can be about consolidating what you've already achieved, and determining where you want to go next.
The Emperor is Patriarchal and a Rule-Setter
As I mentioned above, we are now leaving the matriarchal energy and entering the patriarchal. So over the next year specifically, you may see your interactions with men increase significantly. Of course this could include any man, but oftentimes this is someone in charge in some way. The Emperor is a boss, he is a leader. He could be your father, your husband or your own boss. He could be the men in your life or simply the men you encounter in society.
An Emperor year is a year that may be heavy with rules. This is not going to be the year that you are going to smile nicely and get out of that speeding ticket. If you find yourself in any sort of a situation where you are encountering rules or difficulties, the general advice for the year is to try to follow the rules as much as you can, and if you do have an issue of any kind, to take care of ir as swiftly as possible.
You may have more encounters with law enforcement, policemen, judges, or other authority figures of any kind. You may find your boss to be a bit more domineering this year. Men in your life may be unyielding more so than they have been in the past. You may find men in general to be more controlling. But the Emperor year is meant to serve you. It may be that you need to tighten up your ship a bit. Perhaps you have gotten a bit lax over the last few years. An Emperor year will show you where the cracks are in your foundations, and allow you to fill them to give you a stronger base. An Emperor year should set you up with good routines, Emperors love structure.
Themes for the Emperor Year
So here are some themes you may likely encounter in an Emperor Year:
Dealing with order, routines and rules in general. Emperors also love rules and routines, just as much as they love structure.
Dealing with men in general, authority figures, the bosses, the husbands and the father figures in your life. Male energy as a whole will be prevalent this year.
Dealing with the government, and to a degree possible legal things, although this is only as it relates to violations of any rules and regulations.
Remember, this is an excellent time to give legs to any new ventures you wish to pioneer.
Some negative themes to watch out for:
Keep in mind that while you may experience these types of behaviors in others, they may also come out in YOU. Be certain that you aren't manifesting any of these types of qualities or behaviors this year!
Controlling, bossy behavior
A dictatorship mentality (my way or the highway)
Domineering or overbearing behavior
Abuse of power
Wrapping up The Emperor Year
Now that you know what to expect for the year ahead for all of us, it's time to take a look at your own calendar and decide how you can best work with the energy for the year, and avoid any pitfalls. If you know how to calculate your personal year, I'd highly encourage you to do that as well, and see how that energy will interact with the collective energy of the Emperor year as a whole. If you are unsure how to do that, you can visit this previous post here, all about how to calculate your Birth Cards and Personal Year Cards.
If you'd like to read more about The Emperor you can do so here.
You can also join us for the discussion about calculating your own personal year card here inside of our fb group Tarot for the Modern Reader.

I'm Liza, professional Tarot reader, writer and mentor, and this is Tarot Liza. Everyday we're working to bring our mission of delivering more value and Tarot education to the Modern Reader to life! Welcome! Read more...

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