Ever hear around that holidays that, “It's better to give than it is to receive”? The Six of Pentacles card works further along that train of thought, to really get into it – if you're receiving a gift of charity, who is it that is really becoming more wealthy? When you give a gift, on the surface level it may seem as if you are losing out. Ask anyone who is giving a gift, however, and they'll assure you that they are getting more by giving away than they could if they were the one being given the gift, or if they had given that gift to themselves instead!
Before us we see two beggar, kneeling on the ground – their cloaks are tattered, torn, and patched in places. The beggar's faces are worn and gaunt, their hands thin, their hair tussled. Between these two poor men begging is a many of affluence: you can tell by his rich red clothing and his fancy hat that he is a man of wealth. With one hand, the man is pouring coins into the thin hands of one of the beggars, and with his other hand he holds a weighted scale (akin to the one that Justice herself holds).
The Six of Pentacles is a card that is all about questions – rather than giving you the answer with a picture, it asks you to question yourself and respond as truthfully as possible. Only when you answer with deep truth can you attain the deep wisdom this card holds in store.
The second question this card asks: who has become more wealthy, the man who is giving or the man who is receiving? It seems that the beggars are becoming more wealthy out of this trade, but look again. Look at the face of the man who is giving – he looks akin to a saint, gaining knowledge and wisdom from his actions. Through giving away his money, he is gathering up a different type of wealth... one that can't be bought.
This card asks the question: who has the power, the man who is giving or the man who is receiving? This is a tricky one – after all, the man who is giving the money away seems to be the one with the power. He has the power to earn and keep the money when he wants to, and to give it away when he sees fit. He even holds the scales of Justice, imparting that it is a just and sensible move he is making. But what about the beggars? Don't they have the power to gather coin in their own way? They also have a chance to make money when they want – by begging. In the end, they received what they needed, despite needing to go to unconventional means to get it. This cards is telling you to do a double-check on your own life: who really has the power?
Lastly, the card ask this question: which one are you, the man who is giving or the one who is receiving? In your life, what do you end up doing more? What would you like to be doing more? How can you alter your life to follow the path you really want to follow?
There are only a handful of cards that come close to sharing the questioning nature of the Six of Pentacles - The Wheel of Fortune and The Hanged Man. The Wheel of Fortune always asks us to question what we think we know, and head in a direction we might never have gone before... similar to the Six of Pentacles. The Hanged Man shares a sacrificial attitude towards the things in our lives – like the rich man in the Six of Pentacles, the Hanged Man asks us to give it up in order to gain it all.