The woman on the 9 of Pentacles is taking a leisurely stroll through the gardens of her estate. A lady of refinement and grace, it is incongruous to see, on her left hand, a bird trained to hunt and kill on command. Falconry is an unusual hobby for a gentlewoman, but it is the key to the special nature of this card.
On one hand, the 9 of Pentacles represents all that is most gracious, high-minded and civilized. Art, music and other forms of beauty are very much part of our physical world (Pentacles). Coins are present in this scene, but they are toward the ground. The business of life is important, but we don’t have to focus on practical matters all the time. We can also enjoy the finer things of life. In readings, this card can imply an interest in these areas. It is also a sign that you may need to reject coarse desires and seek the highest good.
The 9 of Pentacles can also be a sign of discipline and self-control. This woman enjoys her cultured life because she has mastered her baser instincts. Her impulses work for her because they don’t rule her. After all, our shadow side can serve us well, but only when it is directed. The falcon symbolizes all that is dark and unruly in human nature, but the woman has it under control. Sometimes the Nine of Pentacles suggests that you must show restraint if you are to achieve your best efforts. You may have to “sacrifice” for the moment, but the results will be worth it.
This card is also a sign of self-reliance. Sometimes you must trust our own ability to handle a situation. Resist the temptation to let others do for you and take matters into your own hands. Our elegant lady has done just that. She trusted in her own grit and determination, and enjoys all the best life has to offer as a result.