“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”
― Albert Einstein
What is your favourite Swords card?
I bet you are hard pushed to nominate one. It is only after many years of journeying with Tarot that I have come to truly appreciate them as powerful messengers of what is going on in the mind or more brilliantly, how we could best shape our thoughts for what is to come including how to stay connected to our path of destiny.
In the Foundation group at College we have just completed our sojourn with the Swords. There were many gasps and groans as we came upon seemingly dark and foreboding cards. But as we opened up to them we began to see them as insightful guides; brutally honest but nonetheless ‘loving’ in so far as they offer advice as to how our thoughts can shape our inner world which ultimately shapes the outer one. ‘Loving’ in that the Swords try to tell us that if we hang on to some thought patterns we will destroy or sabotage our best attempts to move forward.
Symbols in the suit of Swords.
These Swords encourage us to realise that we are more than our thoughts. Through them we can trace back patterns and cycles of thinking that produced a type of behaviour and if we are prepared to consider all of this then we are on a winning streak to taking back our personal power and authenticity. This in itself is liberating if we want it; the alternative is that we remain shackled to our negative mental responses and be forever a prisoner in our own mind.
My favourite Queen happens to be the Queen of Swords.
You could say that she is the dark Queen, the shrew, the widow, the arch enemy! I see her as a positive woman, able to bounce back from the hardships of life, capable of learning her lesson and moving on, a survivor, resilient and resourceful. Yes she has her frailties, she can be cloying, an avenger when crossed and certainly requires reassurance due to her weak ego if it gets the better of her. The lesson she teaches is to believe in yourself and don’t let those who are insignificant to you dictate the terms of engagement. As a woman who is loyal to those that she loves or the causes she believes in then I would certainly want her on my team. Mentally she is sharp and uses her powers of comprehension to progress. Her message might be that there are no such things as mistakes in the Earth school.
What the Swords represent.
We can begin to see that the Swords represent the power of discrimination as expressed in thinking and logic; active and catalytic we can analyse our motives and initiatives.
Swords are associated with Mars, position is Northwest, the Archangel is Michael and the stone is Ruby.
Michael holds the sword that claims the soul of the living at death, dispenser of spiritual death and rebirth, he aligns the soul with its destiny.
Aries (Mars) is the God of war and inner conflict, he also has a domain over mental excitement, intellectual values, morals and hierarchical thinking.
Think of how a sword is made...
It is plunged into fire, it is then oxidised then plunged into fire again to be shaped in the forge. Each turn of the metal in the heat fashions how the sword will eventually look. The metaphor is not wasted as we consider how our thoughts do the same to us.
The Swords can signify, justice and balance and truth, wounds and suffering and overcoming difficulties. Therein lies the paradox, the very thing that can hurt us (our thoughts) are the very thing that can also help and heal us. Our intuition requires the alliance of the intellect if we are to figure out what we need to do or how to proceed. Dreams need plans.
The imagination and the intellect - one cannot exist without the other. Through this partnership we have the beginnings of transcendence and transformation.
The dark and dirty side of the Swords could be fear, oppression, obsession, lack of empathy, self-sabotage, misdirection and mental cruelty.
When those Swords go down on the table in a reading, the client often looks alarmed or says that life isn’t looking particularly rosy or they feel someone is out to get them. That someone is nearly always themselves; we are our own worst enemy.
Living here in the first world, we are taught to be in lack, a constant state of want. Our thoughts are trained to cultivate an inner world that will never be good enough. We thrive on low self-esteem, we constantly hand our power to others who we think are better than us. This is all done in the name of a society that breeds money. I think there is a real fear in the hierarchy that freethinking will spell disaster; control through fearful thinking keeps millions of people all going in one direction.
Your ability to listen to your inner voice and to have the courage to act on it is vital to your personal freedom and identity.
Another interesting card might be the 3 of Swords. This notches up that you have experienced great loss and sorrow but it also speaks of the necessity and capacity to rise above your pain. Through the difficulties there is a real opportunity for growth and ultimately developing wisdom.
The 10 of Swords strikes fear in the breast but this reminds us that endings mean new beginnings. By remaining in the past we subdue our power and become the victim of our own plot; the future has our treasure.
The 9 of Swords, a deeply spiritual card that speaks of destruction through unbridled anxiety, the worst case scenarios, the obsession; but it is in the dark of the night of the soul we reach out for the Divine. We seek supplication and that is the chink where the light shines through.
I have found that whenever I run into black thoughts I keep a gratitude journal for a week, jotting down all that I have to be grateful for; there’s nothing like counting one’s blessings to get things into perspective! However, I am eternally thankful, this rewires, rejuvenates and regroups the tired spirit and the flagging mind.
Which Swords card interests you the most?
Make a note of your responses to the cards perhaps relate to them through personal anecdotes. Meditate on the deeper meaning, record your meditation, be inspired through your connection to the cards.
A Swords spread.
How am I receptive to the ides of others?
How do I express my own ideas?
Do I let my imagination rule my world?
Can I practically implement my thoughts?
What is dominant in my mind?
What do I need to learn?