By its image, the Two of Cups almost always suggests a relationship between two people. Indeed, this is the primary meaning of the card and the one that appears most often in readings. But the love described by this card is not always love for another person. Before we can truly love another we must learn to love ourselves, to love and accept all of the different (and often conflicting) facets of the gemstone that makes up our personality. Like the Temperance card, this is a card of harmonious union, not just of two people, but of two parts of the same person.
That said, it remains obvious that a lot of the time the Two of Cups speaks of external relationships. This is often seen as the card of the soulmate, that person with whom we share a special connection and whom we can love unconditionally. The synergy of a person with his or her soulmate is like the meeting of two stars which, though bright when separate, shine even more brightly when together. From a distance they may even appear to be a single entitiy. Such harmonious combinations, whether they are between two people, groups or ideas, are a staple of the Two of Cups.
It must be said, however, that this card does have its drawbacks. The energy of the Two of Cups is slightly more diluted than the Lovers card, and not simply because of the Major/Minor Arcana power drop. Whereas the Lovers is the reunion of two complete beings, the Two of Cups is a more immature union that, stable as it may seem, does have the potential to fall apart. This is an ideal union, but as you know, there are few ideal cases in our real world! It is ambiguous whether the relationship shown by the Two of Cups can stand the test of time. Only the two people involved can decide that.
One factor in deciding the stability of a relationship is the stability of the people involved. As mentioned earlier, a high self-love will lead to a greater and more comprehensive love of others. So when this card does not appear to signal a relationship, see it as a sign that you have some work to do within yourself. If you can see the light within yourself then you cannot help showing it to others. By releasing doubt and uncertainty we become able to love others without hesitation and without regret. When you stop telling yourself what you could be, you can start enjoying what you already are. And you can let others enjoy that too.