The Clow cards (later Sakura/Star cards) are from the manga & anime Card Captor Sakura. The series follows a girl called Sakura Kinomoto who finds a book in her father’s study called the Clow book. The book contains Clow cards which were made by Clow Reed before his life ended; sealed away until Sakura accidentally releases them. With the Clow cards gone and only left with The Windy, the story follows her capturing all the escaped cards. When she finally has all of them it becomes clear she is next in line to become the master of them. Thus, the cards ‘evolve’ into the Sakura/Star cards by Sakura signing her name onto them.
Clow Reed and The Clow
Clow Reed was a sorcerer born with both English & Chinese heritage. His parents were from very powerful families of magic users and because of his mixed heritage, Clow Reed came to be the most powerful sorcerer ever known. He created The Clow; cards encompassing both Western (Sun) & Eastern (Moon) magic. Each card has their own personality and tremendous power. With the creation of The Clow he also created two guardians called Cerberus & Yue.
Cerberus (aka Kero) is one of the two guardians of The Clow. He is bossy, confident and overindulgent, but also positive and fun. Clow Reed left Kero with the task to find the next master of the cards when he died. Although Kero chooses Sakura out of consequence, he becomes her guide for The Clow throughout the story and helps her through many ordeals. His power is that of the sun & western magic and the cards under him reflect his personality and domain. Just like the sun he generates his own energy instead of needing his master’s to survive.
Yue is the other guardian of The Clow. He is cold, serious and aloof but he has a kind heart. He cared very deeply for his old master, so much so that he had a hard time accepting Sakura as the new master. Yue is in charge of judging the person Kero chooses to see if they are worthy of being the new master of the cards. Because of his hard time accepting anyone other than Clow Reed it took a while before Sakura could convince him; not wanting to hurt him. His power is that of the moon & eastern magic and the cards under him reflect his personality and domain. Just like the moon he doesn’t generate his own magic and needs his master’s energy to survive.
The Clow cards work under a hierarchy. The attribute cards rule over the elemental cards and the elemental cards rule over every card underneath. When laying cards, if any of the attribute cards or the elemental cards come up they influence the reading greatly with their meanings.
The Light Suit
The cards under The Light stand for all that is everyday life, lightheartedness and fun. The exception to this suit is The Shadow, but without light there is no shadow, thus it is included here instead of The Dark suit. I also relate The Light suit with the major arcana in tarot, albeit the positive side more than the negative side. Positive things like having good fortune or good things that we do not have immediate control over.
The Dark Suit
The cards under The Dark stand for all that is mysterious, unknown, and otherworldly. This includes parts of life we might not like, but still have to go through. Just like the Light suit I relate The Dark suit with the major arcana in tarot. It talks about things we thus far had no control over, but notifies us to think about those aspects and invites us to take the necessary steps for positive change. It will be a challenge and we might even fear it, but life is filled with ups and downs. When we get through our down period, we face the better times triumphantly with an experience richer and we might even be better equipped to handle a similar situation in the future.
The Fire Suit
The cards under The Firey stand for action, passion, temper and upheavals. It tells us that one way or another we need to put our all into it. Whether it’s to keep trying, fully take something out of our lives or try our best to hit that mark. Yes, it may be challenging and the road might be bumpy, but the vitality & creativity of the Fire suit tells us that we can do this. Sometimes all we need is willpower & determination!
The Water Suit
The cards under The Watery stand for emotion, relationship and intuition. Although the Watery is an aggressive card of its own, the cards underneath it tend to be more calm, soft and some are even fun! However, the cards underneath the Watery are also related to how we handle situations and react to the world and people around us on an emotional level.
The Earth Suit
The cards under The Earthy stand for stability, security, & strength. They are about the material self or about things related to the self. Whether this is protecting one’s self, finding balance around one’s self or breaking material cycles.
The Wind Suit
The cards under The Windy stand for communication, truth & clarity. It's about taking a step back and thinking it through sometimes. Although the element of air is related to the mental realm not all cards in the wind suit are related to it. Some are about literal movement as well.
Individual Card Meanings
This is a long list with a few words per card. I am working on a more in-depth document regarding The Clow because many people, including myself, don't think the official fortune telling book really fits with its descriptions. The Clow cards each have their own individual & unique personality which shine through in their meanings. Why not add those into the equation? There are also meanings that come from my personal use of the cards. Use what you feel is right!
- unknown, uncomfortable, needs over wants, catastrophic thinking, night, challenge, mystery
day, clear, going to be okay, enlightenment, positivity, encouragement
arrogance, passion, rage, explosive, high energy, drive, fire
emotions, co-operation, relations, water
body, material, earth, stoic, barren, stability
intelligence, mental clarity, bind, mentality, wind, logic, analyzing
shooting your shot, several chances, scattered, many passions, aiming but not shooting, goal-oriented, inspiration
not as scary as it seems, big heart, non-discriminating, means well, friendly, clumsy, oblivious, ditsy
clean slate, cleansing, cleaning, make a prototype, there is an idea but nothing concrete, ephemeral
empathize, change, camouflage, fitting in, mask, invisibility, hiding, aversion to change, mind games
brain fog, confusion, emotionally clogged, pretending to be fine, making the best out of a bad situation
creation, manifestation, inspiration, writing, paper, art, imagination, creativity
avoidance, speed, quick thinking, shy, scared, skittish, escape
prophecies, dreams, occult, knowledge, clair senses, veiled, obscure
declutter, moving on, lift the veil, revelation
giving it 110%, hard work, disciplined, meticulous, brash, actions speak louder than words, exercise, hidden power, assertive, willpower
detached, big picture, head in the clouds, more than it seems, take a step back
friends, fun, longevity, light-hearted, optimistic, joyful, calm, relaxed, party, celebration
moving, flying, soaring, travel, big change, transformation, open-mindedness, support, freedom
congeal, frozen, stagnation, cold, many pieces to a whole, sharp, splintered
good fortune, kindness, beauty, peace, inspiration
positivity, wish, hope, content, look at the brightside, love, oneness/unity, happiness
see what you want to see, imagination, longing
leap before you look, reach further heights, pestering, stupidity
balance, truth, weighing options, justice
small, bullying, sadism, annoyance, schadenfreude
stability, shut-in, not available right now, familiarity
repeat, habit, link, infinity
self-created, lost, (feeling) stuck, distorted
divinity, support, family, miracle
leadership, regret, mirroring, confrontation, image
toxicity, decay, elusive, destructive
turning heads, chase, small steps, keeping it small
nothing, void, negativity, (fear of) abandonment, loneliness
Showing-off, pride, trouble maker, friendly challenge
fun, abundance, jokes, free-spirited, chaotic
a need for change, regret, living in the past, restore, nostalgia, return, learning (from the past)
multiple options, jack of all trades, adaptability
two sides, hidden, consequences, the shadow archetype
defensive, jealous, protest, protection, help others, idealism, steadfastness
obsession, events speed up, hectic times, ruthless, stubborn, willpower, lashing out
meditation, contemplation, look within, loud, sensory overload, solitary
sleep, end, momentary peace, forgetfulness
witty, control, purity, management
bliss, happiness, singing, music, song, mimicry, perfectionism
bothered, moody, overthinking, uncertainty
sweets, self-love, rest, relaxation, take care of yourself
challenge, anger, precision, conflict, cutthroat, confrontation
omit, remove, invisible, spirits
time, when, exhaustion
upheaval, sudden, rampage, lightning, tower-moment
two people, equal, entwined, together, stuck, co-depend, pattern, fate, cycles, habit (and breaking of), hurting without meaning to harm, duality
greedy, communication, all talk no action, venting
overwhelmed, tidings, emotionally moving
- growth, perseverance, gentleness, nature, patience, sensuality, abundance, altruism, fertility, breaking habits