Swords Suit

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What is the Swords Suit?

The Swords suit covers all situations around intellect and how you mentally feel around any given situation. It explores how you feel within and your attitude and belief systems towards your own journey and any obstacles that may be at play.

There is a double edge to a sword and thus this is depicted throughout the Sword suit. They symbolise both intellect and power and how they can be used for the greater good or with bad intention.


The Swords Suit

Swords are Spades in traditional playing cards.

Swords are influenced by the element of air. They fall under the zodiac signs of Gemini, Libra and Aquarius. Air is unseen just like our thoughts and consciousness but is ever moving. It can be a gentle breeze or a raging wind which can be cleansing but exceptionally powerful.

Air signs are rational, logical, excellent communicators and always like to analyse every situation that they find themselves in. On the flip side they can be ruthless, intolerant and domineering.

This card suit aligns with the masculine energy bringing powerful revelations to the querent.

The Sword suit reflects this energy by representing on the positive side, action, change, power, ambition and clarity.

The negative side can be violence, abuse, anger, guilt, crisis and lack of empathy or compassion.

The action can be both constructive and destructive, just like the double-edged sword. . .

If a card spread is heavy with swords the querent may be finding themselves in oppressive situations, struggling with conflict, have mental struggles and are needing to make life changing decisions.

Swords are strong in their message and highlight what is occurring around you that can be adding to your crisis. They encourage the querent to think with their mind rather than be overruled by emotion.

When cards are selected, and any appear upside down this is known as a reversed card. This has a completely new meaning to that card and generally is the opposite to what the upright card signifies.

This is when a different aspect of the swords comes into play. They mainly relate to unresolved mental struggles, failure to take action and allowing oneself to be in an inactive state.

Here is a quick reference to each card including the reversed version. But know that they do have various meanings and can change dependent on what card surrounds them in the card spread. This is especially so if they are trumped by a Major Arcana card or softened by the emotional element of cups. A brief description of each individual illustration is included, in this instance from the Rider Waite Tarot deck:

Ace of Swords

Illustration

A hand emanates from the clouds representing the divine. The hand holds a sword upright which represents intellect. The crown and wreath above the tip of the sword depicts victory. Despite this card representing possible new beginnings, the mountains illustrated at the bottom of the card make for a hard journey ahead with challenges. The querent will need to be strong willed to forge ahead.

Meaning

New ideas. Mental clarity. Success. Triumph over adversity. Strength of will. Action. Cutting out the old.

Reversed

Clouded judgement. Seeking truth. Frustration in new plans.

 

Two of Swords

Illustration

A woman is blindfolded and feels that she is in the dark as depicted by the moon shining above her. The moon also encourages the woman to trust her intuition. She holds two swords depicting two choices, the blindfold represents failing to see both options with clarity thus resulting in indecision and a need to weigh her options. The islands represent the obstacles in her path and the water flowing around the islands tells her that there are emotions connected to each obstacle.

Meaning

Indecision. Lack of clarity. Avoiding the situation. Failing to see the whole picture.

Reversed

Stalemate. Feeling stuck. Opposing parties. Feeling stuck in the middle.

 

Three of Swords

Illustration

Three swords pierce a heart showing ultimate sorrow and heartbreak. The swords represent words, actions and intent of others. The storm in the background however states that this will soon pass, and brighter skies will result.

Meaning

Heartbreak. Sorrow. Grieving. Emotional pain.

Reversed.

Forgiving others. Letting go of pain. Negative self-belief. Recovery from hurt.

 

Four of Swords

Illustration

The knight lays with his hands in prayer as a sign of being at rest. The underlying sword represents a point of focus. The three swords pointing downwards depict what could be overwhelming the knight. A woman and child are depicted in the window representing contemplation of loved ones.

Meaning

Meditation. Solace. Contemplation. Reflection. Relaxation. Rest.

Reversed

Exhaustion. Lack of energy. Lack of change.

 

Five of Swords

Illustration

A man holds three swords and looks back at two crestfallen men, their swords dropped on the ground. The scene represents a battle that has occurred and defines that all is not well around this situation despite the fight ending.

Meaning

Conflict. Arguments. Defeat. Winning at the detriment of others. Opposing views.

Reversed

Making amends. Being unheard. Futile arguments. Old wounds being opened. Need for peace. Compromise. Forgiveness.

 

Six of Swords

Illustration

A woman holding her child is being rowed by a man towards new land which depicts moving on from a sad situation. The child nestles into his mother wanting security, comfort and safety. The waters are turbulent next to the boat but are calm near the island which suggest moving on to a calmer state of being and away from a traumatic situation. The six swords, however, are upright in the boat signifying that the woman may still hold baggage from her past.

Meaning

Transition. Letting go of old baggage. Moving on to calmer waters. Making change.

Leaving trauma and sadness behind.

Reversed

Staying in the past. Holding on to baggage. Resisting change. Struggling to move on.

Seven of Swords

Illustration

A man is sneaking away carrying his swords from a military camp. He looks back at the two of swords smiling as he is proud of the fact that he has managed to get away unnoticed.

Meaning

Betrayal. Deception. Sneakiness. Injustice. Getting away with something. Strategic planning.

Reversed

Self-doubt. Self-deceit. Guilt. Secrets. Infidelity. A need to face the truth.

 

Eight of Swords

Illustration

A woman is blindfolded and bound, surrounded by eight swords that depict her apparently being trapped. If she took the blindfold off however, she would see that she can quickly escape from this predicament by seeing the situation she is in and having a strong mindset to move away. The water depicts that her intuition could very well see what she is missing whilst blindfolded.

Meaning

Feelings of entrapment. Failing to see the solution. Acting a victim. Self-imposed imprisonment. Indecision.

Reversed

Lack of self-esteem. Negative self-talk. Old patterns needing to be released. Change of perspective.

 

Nine of swords

Illustration

A woman is sitting up in bed as if she has awoken from a terrible dream. The nine swords weigh heavy on a dark wall depicting negative thoughts and worries. On the base of her bed there are two figures, one defeating the other. She feels defeated but is wrapped in a rose and zodiac covered quilt showing perhaps everything isn’t as bad as she thinks.

Meaning

Sleepless nights. Depression. Worrying thoughts. Projection of fear. Anxiety. Attracting what you worry about.

Reversed

Making things worse. Fear. Being hard on oneself. Making a recovery.

 

Ten of Swords

Illustration

A man lies face down on the ground apparently dead with ten swords in his back. Being ‘stabbed in the back’ is highlighted by these swords where he has been a victim of betrayal. His cape covers his lower half representing dignity as he passes on. The sunset on the horizon shows that there is a dawn of a new day where difficult times are passing. The calm sea depicts the peace that will now come after this challenging time.

Meaning

Betrayal. Being deeply wounded. Loss. Crisis. End of a difficult situation. Life lessons.

Reversed

Recovery. Starting anew. Releasing inner pain. Releasing past memories. Hope of a new future.

 

The Court Suit

 

Page of Swords

Illustration

A young man stands with his sword aloft but looks the other way to see what is around him. The clouds are flurrying past showing a dynamic fresh energy blowing through his hair. He stands on firm fertile ground that depicts he has new ideas which will grow and blossom with a good foundation.

Meaning

New ideas. New ways to communicate. Spying on others. Public speaking. Being open to other people’s point of view.

Reversed

Holding back your truth. Fear of expressing oneself. All talk no action. Refining communication with others.

 

Knight of Swords

Illustration

The Knight is boldly galloping ahead on his white horse that defines a purity in his intentions and goals. He holds his sword upright as he charges ahead symbolizing his dedication to the mission at hand. Despite the strong winds and storm clouds he is battling ahead undaunted.

Meaning

Ambition. Focus. Bold actions. Motivation. Acting too quickly. Haste. Sharing ideas.

Reversed

Restlessness. Frustration. Little direction. Distraction. Need to slow down. Going it alone.

 

Queen of Swords

Illustration

The queen sits confidently on her throne which is adorned with a cherub to show her softer side and a butterfly that symbolizes change and transformation. She is focused as she holds her sword upright representing high intellect and a willingness to accept new opportunities with her left hand being held open. The clouds yet again are building up around her being blown by a strong wind that represents ongoing change which she gladly welcomes.

Meaning

Independence. Directness. Power. Intellect over emotion. Truth seeker. Honesty. Upfront. Clear boundaries. Respect.

Reversed

Heart before your head. Need for intellect. Being dominated. Unclear boundaries. Isolation through lack of compassion. Victim of cold-hearted actions.

 

King of Swords

Illustration

The King sits upon his thrown with authority and steadfastness. He holds the sword in his right hand depicting he is willing to balance his intellect with his intuitive side. His blue robes represent a thirst for spiritual knowledge, the purple robe depicting his compassion and intellect. He has a small angel by his side whispering words of guidance and butterflies around his head signifying his strength in making change and transformation. The winds have now settled and the clouds are clearing unlike the other court cards meaning that he has now found clarity and stability rather than confusion and adversity.

Meaning

Mental clarity. Focus. Authority. Truth. Professional advisor (solicitor/ accountant/ etc.). Expert in one’s field. Use of logic and intellect.

Reversed

Bully. Manipulation. Intimidator. Critical. Self-obsession. Lak of decisiveness. Delays of necessary change. Abuse of power.

As can be seen, the Swords suit holds the most diverse of meanings for each card. Cards that neighbour a sword in a card spread will help to identify what trait needs to be ascertained.

So, for instance if a cup card is positioned next to the King, there is a need to be more compassionate or more thoughtful to other people’s emotions when making change and leading people. If the King is next to a wand, for instance, the querent needs to take more action in seeking truth of a situation or work harder to gain clarity.

The Swords suit takes us on a journey of recognizing inner turmoil and how to acknowledge when we are bound by our own thoughts and belief systems. It is a self-realization suit and encourages the querent to seek their own truth as well as others that surround us.

Take time to notice the intricate symbology in each card as every detail represents something that will bring depth to the card when trying to analyze it.

Mastering the Swords suit will certainly open a door to a deeper understanding of the querent and what waters run deep within.

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