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TAROT MEANINGS FOR
REAL-LIFE

What does the Seven of Wands mean in a love reading? And the Six of Cups in a career reading? 

 

A single card is only a part of the larger, broader story that is a reading, but we have to start somewhere. What I propose here is a way for you to understand each card, so that you can apply it to relationships, career, finances, family life, wellbeing, spirituality or any other context. 

Because when you understand a card, you no longer need to memorize it and you can naturally adapt it to readings of any nature.

TAROT MEANINGS vs. INTERPRETATION

Meaning and interpretation are two separate things.

Many, if not most words have multiple meanings. An arm can be a part of your body, the cool thing that holds my overhead camera when I'm giving a class or a division in an organization. But it can also be the action of equipping yourself with something, often a weapon, but not always a weapon, since you can be armed with information, or education, or courage.

It is confusing! And if this happens with words, how wouldn't it happen with cards? 

Well, the information that you can arm yourself with here (arm, see what I did? I'm a genius!) will help you dissipate these doubts.

Meanings are defined, but interpretations are abstract. Imagine that you're about to leave your home but not be able to find your keys and as a result, you're late to work. And now imagine that 5 minutes later, there's an accident where you would have been by now had you made it on time. 

Well, not being able to find your keys means that you will not get to work on time. But you could interpret that losing your keys has potentially protected you from being involved in an accident. One is established, the other is not.

Finding a feather means that a bird lost it at some point, but it can be interpreted as a sign. What something means is one boxed thing, what you interpret from it, needs from other elements to come into play.

Tarot meanings cheat sheet | the sibyls tarot meanings | fyodor pavlov tarot | sibyl meanings

CORE MEANINGS *

* Not another keyword resource.

At least, not any random keyword. Keep reading to learn what core meanings are and how they can help you in your understanding of each card.

WHAT ARE CORE MEANINGS?

Core meanings are the ultimate tarot meanings cheat sheet. They are not, though, any random keyword that you just repeat without any further understanding, and that is precisely the trick. Core meanings are a key that captures the essence of each card and unlocks its interpretations. It is based on understanding the card, not memorizing it, and while I have my own, they don't have to be yours. 

There's no memorization involved, there's no forgetting, there's understanding and integrating so that you are able to adapt it to the situation that you are reading about. 

This word, or keyword, has certain requirements. 

  • It is one word or a short concept.
     

  • Ideally, it is neutral, this is, not "good" or "bad" by itself.¹
     

  • It captures the essence of the cards, in it lights and shadows.
     

Here you will find a list with my own current² core meanings (some of which may be weird, but I suggest you look at each description before taking the word and running with it / being horrorized by the simplification or weirdness of the concept) if you click on each card, you will find more information about it. You are welcome to use my own core meanings, but I invite you to discover your own following my method.

1. What if I can't find a neutral word? 

That's okay, it is not always possible. However, keep an open mind when it comes to it and understand that while some words can have a positive or negative connotation, they often have neutral ones. An example of this is The Magician.
 

2. What do you mean by "current"?

I developed my first list years ago. After having read tarot for over half of my life, my knowledge and experience has evolved. The words that defined the cards have evolved with it, and while I have maintained some, I have learned more or found words that more accurately describe the essence of the cards. Learning is always a work in progress.

Core Tarot Meanings List

CORE TAROT MEANINGS LIST


0. THE FOOL - NEW

I. THE MAGICIAN - MANIPULATION

II. THE HIGH PRIESTESS - HIDDEN

III. THE EMPRESS - GESTATION

IV. THE EMPEROR - DUTY


V. THE HIEROPHANT - INSTITUTION

VI. THE LOVERS - CHOICE

VII. THE CHARIOT - MOVEMENT

VIII. STRENGTH - CONVICTION

IX. THE HERMIT - PURPOSEFUL ISOLATION

X. THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE - ACCEPTANCE

XI. JUSTICE - LAW

XII. THE HANGED MAN - SUSPENSION

XIII. DEATH - DEATH

XIV. TEMPERANCE - FLOW

XV. THE DEVIL - PERCEIVED ENTRAPMENT

XVI. THE TOWER - COLLAPSE

XVII. THE STAR - HOPE

XVIII. THE MOON - DISTORTION

XIX. THE SUN - JOY

XX. JUDGEMENT - DESERVING

XXI. THE WORLD - COMPLETION

ACE OF SWORDS - IDEA

TWO OF SWORDS - AVOIDANCE

THREE OF SWORDS - REVELATION

FOUR OF SWORDS - STILLNESS

FIVE OF SWORDS - INNER CONFLICT

SIX OF SWORDS - JOURNEY

SEVEN OF SWORDS - STRATEGY

EIGHT OF SWORDS - LIMITATIONS

NINE OF SWORDS - WORRY

TEN OF SWORDS - PAIN

PAGE OF SWORDS (EARTH OF AIR) - A WINDY DAY

KNIGHT OF SWORDS (FIRE OF AIR) - A TORNADO

QUEEN OF SWORDS (WATER OF AIR) - A RAINSTORM

KING OF SWORDS (AIR OF AIR) - THE SKY

ACE OF WANDS - DESIRE

TWO OF WANDS - PLANNING

THREE OF WANDS - EXPANSION

FOUR OF WANDS - FOUNDATION

FIVE OF WANDS - OUTER CONFLICT

SIX OF WANDS - CONQUERING

SEVEN OF WANDS - DEFENSE

EIGHT OF WANDS - SPEED

NINE OF WANDS - LONG GAME

TEN OF WANDS - BAGGAGE

PAGE OF WANDS (EARTH OF FIRE) - A TEA CANDLE

KNIGHT OF WANDS (FIRE OF FIRE) - A WILDFIRE

QUEEN OF WANDS (WATER OF FIRE) - A HEARTH

KING OF WANDS (AIR OF FIRE) - A FORGE

ACE OF CUPS - CALLING

TWO OF CUPS - TOGETHERNESS

THREE OF CUPS - SOCIAL

FOUR OF CUPS - ENNUI

FIVE OF CUPS - GRIEF

SIX OF CUPS - PAST

SEVEN OF CUPS - PROCRASTINATION

EIGHT OF CUPS - NECESSARY ABANDONMENT

NINE OF CUPS - SATIETY

TEN OF CUPS - MAXIMUM GROWTH

PAGE OF CUPS (EARTH OF WATER) - A SPROUT

KNIGHT OF CUPS (FIRE OF WATER) - BOILING WATER

QUEEN OF CUPS (WATER OF WATER) - WATER OF THE WOMB

KING OF CUPS (AIR OF WATER) - A RAFT IN CALM WATERS

ACE OF PENTACLES - OPPORTUNITY

TWO OF PENTACLES - JUGGLING

THREE OF PENTACLES - TEAM

FOUR OF PENTACLES - HOARD

FIVE OF PENTACLES - LACK

SIX OF PENTACLES - CHARITY

SEVEN OF PENTACLES - WAIT

EIGHT OF PENTACLES - MASTERY

NINE OF PENTACLES - ATTAINMENT

TEN OF PENTACLES - LEGACY

PAGE OF PENTACLES (EARTH OF EARTH) - FERTILE SOIL

KNIGHT OF PENTACLES (FIRE OF EARTH) - A DIAMOND IN THE MAKING

QUEEN OF PENTACLES (WATER OF EARTH) - WATERED PLANTS

KING OF PENTACLES (AIR OF EARTH) - A MOUNTAINTOP

IMG_5792.HEIC

THE METHOD EXPLAINED

Follow these simple instructions to create your own list of core meanings. This is a lengthy process, specially when you are getting started with your tarot learning, so don't rush it.

Even if you are an experienced reader, finding your own core meanings can be beneficial.

THE PROCESS OF FINDING YOUR CORE TAROT MEANINGS

The first step is  gathering information about traditional card meanings. There are lots of resources that you can use for that purpose, from books to websites. Read a lot. Not to memorize, but to understand what's going on in each card.

Read about the story behind each card, its symbolism, meaning and keywords. Take some notes but not a whole testament. Only what's important. 

What does this information have in common? 

When you have learned about a single card, find a word (or simple concept) that encompasses all that you have learned, and that helps you unlock that information. 

It sounds complicated, but it is not that difficult. 

See an example of my train of thought here with The Fool. 

My core meaning for The Fool is "new". 

Here's how I have arrived to this conclusion. 

Most reliable sources of information will tell you that The Fool is associated to beginnings, innocence, originality, potential, risk-taking, recklessness, freedom

You may now be wondering how or even why would I simplify all of that to "new". 

Well, it is not exactly a simplification and it does not deny the other meanings. It simply unlocks them in my mind. 

A beginning is new, an spontaneus adventure is a new plan, innocence derives from inexperience, ergo, new. Original, never done before? Also new. A risk? It wouldn't be a risk if you knew what's going to happen, so it's also new. Freedom? Infinite potential, the clean slate, untouched, so again, new. 

As you can see, it's not that you have simplified it to mean one single thing, but that you have found a way to attach all of those meanings to a word, and if you have followed the process, you will be able to remember the connections that you made to arrive to that single word or concept, thus having a more ample view of the essence of the card. 

But don't just take my word for it. Try it!

THE FOOL
NEW

The open and innocent spirit of The Fool is not influenced by his surroundings. He does not think about the destination, but about the path. The word that comes to mind is "new" since the essence of the card is about the unexplored and the potential that it contains. 

When translating this to real life, we are looking at an undeveloped situation, whether an opportunity, an adventure, a connection. It is approached with curiosity but also light-heartedness. The destination or goal is not assured but potential, malleable, and subject to the twists and turns of the landscape.

THE MAGICIAN
MANIPULATION

"To manipulate" means to handle with one's hands. And that's precisely what The Magician does. This character stands behind his altar with all four elements at his disposal, knowing that he's connected to the above and the below. He has the skill to transform the elements, to manipulate them, into what he wants them to become. 

In a real-life interpretation, this speaks of the ability of the querent or whoever they're talking about to create the circumstances that they desire, while also highlighting the shadow side of manipulation, since the skill of transforming the elements into something else does not have a character by itself and is determined by the will of the doer.

THE HIGH PRIESTESS

HIDDEN

The High Priestess is the keeper of knowledge that is occult but not forbidden. Her connection to the Moon highlights the inner world and refers as well to her ties to the pursuit of wisdom on one's own. This wisdom or information is there, but remains unknown until one comes across it (or goes looking for it). 

What does this mean in our real-life? I chose hidden to be my core meaning simply because The High Priestess does not speak about things that are in the open, but within or behind a veil. Nontheless, nothing stops the querent from finding out the not so obvious if they set themselves to it. It refers what's going on underneath and references unknown elements.

THE EMPRESS
GESTATION

Many jump into "pregnancy" or "fertility" when seeing The Empress. I prefer gestation (which can be literal or figurative, most often figurative) because it adds a nuance of timing. This card has a strong component of nurturing and time. Why? Well, someone can be fertile, and yet, gestation has a set duration of time that cannot be rushed no matter what you do. 

In a real-life application, we are looking at a situation that's growing, not fully developed or not "to term" yet. There is the fertility component, sure, but nourishment and patience are also required for it to come to fruition. It speaks about the power that sometimes exists in doing nothing and waiting for things to develop on their own.

THE EMPEROR

DUTY

One may think that The Emperor is on top of the world and his power grants him everything that he may want. While this may be partially true, and there are plenty of privileges to his power, there are also plenty of restrictions that come with who he is. For this, "duty" is my word of choice, since ultimately, heavy is the head that wears the crown. 

In real-life, this card represents authority over a given situation but also the limitations that come with that power. The responsibility that is acquired with one's position that may not always allow the querent to make the decisions that they would like to make as a result of previous choices or a set of circumstances.

THE HIEROPHANT
INSTITUTION

When I say "institution" I'm not only referring to an organization, though I'm not excluding it. I am also referring to an established practice. What, pretty much like the Church, is, or has been part of the landscape for a long period of time and has a set place in the world, society, or ultimately in the context of a reading, in the situation at hand.

This card in real-life has a nuance of permanence, though it is not to be mistaken with progress. While it can settle things down, it can also speak of a situation that will not develop further. It represents what's accepted as it is by virtue of habit and not necessarily by merit.

THE LOVERS

CHOICE

This is a twist on a classic. The association of The Lovers to the concept of choice comes from the Tarot de Marseille more than from the Rider Waite Smith system. However, in an attempt to expand on the evident relational meaning of The Lovers,  I went with "choice" because it is undeniable a component of a relationship of any nature. 

In a real-life context, a functional relationship of any kind is a matter of making a mutual decision in the same direction. In a disfunctional one, there's also a choice being made, but not the same. This allows to represents the lights and shadows of the card.

THE CHARIOT
MOVEMENT

I've had multiple interesting discussions with this one. Many see The Chariot as overcoming obstacles, and while it is one of its possibilities, I believe that "movement" is a more accurate core meaning for this card. The image represents the Platonic myth of the charioteer. In this myth, the chariot does not move on its own, but by virtue the charioteer being able to control both horses. 

In real-life, movement is not always forward and does not always mean overcoming. A wheel can collapse, there can be a change of direction or we may not always end up in the right place. Additionally, we may stay long-term in our destination or it may be just a trip. The Chariot, thus, brings movement into the situation, but is not by itself victorious necessarily.

STRENGTH

CONVICTION

This is my most recent change. I used to go with "determination" and considered "persuasion" but I came up with "conviction" as a sum of what this card represents. The woman in the traditional depiction is opening the jaw of the lion not by force, but through conviction, her own and the persuasion that it took to create that mutual trust.

In real-life, Strength is a symbol of resilience and an inner conviction, but it also brings in the persuasive element of convincing those around. Since in its shadow aspect it can be a "gaslighty" card, instigating that convition in others seemed fitting for what the card speaks about.

THE HERMIT
PURPOSEFUL ISOLATION

One could argue that "instrospection" would be easier and the same, and to an extent I agree, but I like to add the nuance of a decision willingly made with "purposeful isolation". You see, The Hermit did not say "let's do some introspection because my therapist said so". It's his lifestyle, he has willingly, and with a purpose of enlightenment, withdrawn from the world. 

How does this apply in real-life? Well, the isolation or introspection of The Hermit is a decision, it is voluntary and not forced by anyone or anything. It says what he engages or not engages with is because he wants to. What is going on within, or the reasons to remain in this isolation, are greater than the need to change course.

THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE

ACCEPTANCE

"Acceptance" as a choice of core meaning for The Wheel of Fortune can raise some eyebrows, however, this refers to the set of circumstances that we are given, the inescapable cyclic nature of The Wheel and those matters that are not within our control. 

In real-life, acceptance is full awareness and recognition of a situation, not with resignation, but in a sense of "this is where I am and this is what the situation is, and from here, I can look at the options". This card highlights the matters that aren't in one's hands, even thought the reaction to those circumstances always is.

JUSTICE
LAW

I was super close to breaking my own rules and keeping two words for this one, but I ended up discarding my first core meaning which was "truth" for "law" and here's why. It is easy to understand Justice when compared to Judgement. Justice is the justice of men, the law, without room for many nuances, more black-and-white, cause and effect kind of situation, and justice is not always fair. Judgement on the other hand, depicts the Final Judgement in a biblical way, it is the law of God (Pixie's work, not mine!) and it makes room for grey areas. What's morally wrong can be legally right and go unpunished. What's morally right can be legally wrong on occasion.

In real-life, Justice is a very slow card (how slow is all the red tape?) and while of course it can have legal implications, it is about getting a reaction to one's action according to an established set of rules and not necessarily to what one deserves. This does not negate that fairness can be in the mix, of course, but also takes into consideration the potential shadows of Justice.

THE HANGED MAN

SUSPENSION

The Hanged Man chooses to hang himself by the foot in order to look at the world in a different way. By doing this, he becomes an observer and forfeits interaction with the world around him for a passive position that grants him a new perspective. 

Translating this to real-life we have a situation that is not in motion. Communication, interaction and movement are not on the table and it can speak of stagnation and a lack of development. "Suspension" as my choice of words, leaves things up in the air, with no immediate resolution.

DEATH
DEATH

This is not a typo. "Death" is a perfect sum of what this card means. I am not a fan of "transformation" even though this card very seldom speaks of an actual physical death (I know this has its detractors, but I refuse to believe that a tool that's meant to reflect every human experience refuses to acknowledge the one we all have in common). Why? Because yes, it can speak of a transformation, but for that to happen, what was before must die.

In real-life this is not an easy card. It is not always major, but it is most often an unenjoyable process, even if the outcome is. It brings endings that can result in powerful transformation or even in better circumstances, yet the road there is likely to be hard.

TEMPERANCE

FLOW

The angel in Temperance pours water from a cup to another, one foot into the water, one foot on the ground. They're not here, nor there, in a continuous movement. While some may argue that the perfect keyword would be "balance" I chose "flow" because it captures the essence of quiet movement in the card. 

In real-life, we can say that Temperance is balanced and unbothered, quiet and tranquil, but also non-commital. Its not here not there nuance suggests limited involvement in the situation that is being read on and brings a sense of fluctuation and temporality to it. 

THE DEVIL
PERCEIVED ENTRAPMENT

For a while, my core meaning was "vice" but it evolved into "perceived entrapment" as I came to understand this card in greater depth. The Devil represents those perceived ties that are not really such. When looking closely into the card, the prisoners that are tied by the neck are captured by shakles bigger than their heads. They could leave was it not for the intimidating presence of The Devil. 

In real-life, this translates into a reflection of the issues that complicate our lives and limit our movements, usually because there's something else at stake. Addictions are closely related to this card for their trapping nature, as are toxic environments that one does not feel strong enough to abandon.

THE TOWER

COLLAPSE

An ancient tower gives away after being struck by lightening. It's an apparently solid structure that, in unexpected circumstances is brought down. Whether the cause is the strength of the event or the weakness of its foundation (or a combination of both) the collapse is imminent.

In real-life, this translates as an event or situation in which things are falling under their own weight. It can also refer to the straw that breaks the camel's back. It usually adds a nuance of swiftness to the timeline in which the events will play out.

THE STAR
HOPE

"Hope" defeats all logic and while it is a word with positive connotations, it can also be blind. The Star alludes to the deepest hopes and desires, whether or not these are feasible. It comes with a nuance of divine intervention, guidance or it may refer to a sign from above. 

In real-life, this card speaks about one's hopes, desires and aspirations, but it can also refer to self-deceit on its shadow side or to wishful thinking. The beauty and the shadow of this card go hand in hand, and while there are a lot of positive aspects to it, it is worth considering the surrounding circumstances to identify which aspect is coming to light.  

THE MOON

DISTORTION

The landscape in The Moon card is dimly illuminated, it is a watery card tied to the subsconscious and a somewhat illuminated darkness in which it is difficult to distinguish what is what. My choice of word "distortion" is based on the fact that at night, things are not what they seem. 

In real-life, I like to make a comparison between The Moon and that messy chair we all pile up clothes on. In the dark of the night, it an take all kinds of shapes, but it is only when you turn the lights on that you see its real nature. For this, this card adds a nuance of not having all the information about the situation at hand, or appeareances not being what they seem.

THE SUN
JOY

It is not a surprise that "joy" has been chosen for what's generally deemed as the most positive card of the deck with no downside. However, I don't like seeing the cards in absolutes because nothing in life is, and while The Sun is a very positive card, I also see it in its shadow as getting your way, the same way that a child who eats a lot of candy but then their tummy hurts.

In real-life, The Sun brings a nuance of possibilities, growth and enjoyment to the reading. However, it not always ensures that the joy will stay. One may get what they want, but that may not be the ideal situation down the line, and by itself it does not grant that the result will provide long-term happiness.

JUDGEMENT

DESERVING

In Judgement, the dead rise to confront the final destination of their souls. Without getting too biblical, this is a moment of reckoning in which souls are examined. Actions or lack of thereof and the motives behind it will be seen, and there will be the corresponding reward or punishment, hence my choice "deserving.

In real-life, this is somewhat simplified to a moment in which one is confronted with the consequences of their actions for better or for worse. In its most light aspect, this card speaks of forgiveness or a new opportunity, as well as the chance to begin again with a clean record. 

THE WORLD
COMPLETION

The World is a culmination card, again, for better or for worse. It represents a climax, a conclusion, the highest achievement or the need to pick up our things and wrap it up. For this, my word of choice was "completion". In this, The World has similarities with the tens in the Minor Arcana, as you will be able to see later.

In real-life this translates pretty much as a moment of transition, either in the form of achievement, in which case one would move on to a new stage, having reached the top in the previous one, or it would come a time in which the situation has no more to give and a new horizon is required. Whether with wholeness or with a sense of closure, one's ready for the next chapter.

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ACE OF SWORDS

IDEA

The Ace of Swords represents the raw essence of Air and all that it is related to. It brings intellectual openness and a desire to get to the bottom of the matter. My word of choice "idea" represents the awakening of the mind brought forth by this card. 

In real-life, this can come in the form of an idea, a discovery, a revelation or the conception of a project or change, however, it is in a stage previous to taking any action, it still lives in the mind. Additionally, it can cut, separate or create a before and after in the situation. 

TWO OF SWORDS
AVOIDANCE

For better or for worse, in the Two of Swords, the character seems to have little care for what is going on in the outside world. With their eyes covered and two swords crossed in front of their chest, in a protective position, they guard their heart and eyes from outside stimuli, only to pay attention to their own inner world. Here's how the word "avoidance" comes into play, since whether positively aspected, as in trying to get away from the noise around, or ill-aspected as in refusing to see the facts, they protect themselves from the outside.

In real-life, this translates as listening to one's inner voice in regards to the matter at hand, but it can also translate as a sort of self-deceit, failing to see the reality of a situation or being blinded to the truth. It suggests a refusal to address the elephant in the room and can also indicate being at crossroads about a situation. 

THREE OF SWORDS

REVELATION

The Three of Swords is one of the most feared cards, for it usually brings a piercing pain, but also a realization. This card tends to create disappointment, which is often a keyword for it, but when we are disappointed, it is because we've acquired information that clashes with our previous conception of a given situation, which made "revelation" a fitting core meaning. 

In real-life, this is interpreted as a mismatch between expectations and reality, grieving the future that we had imagined or unveiling a truth that causes pain and yet is freeing. While things may not go back to what they were before, the information acquired will allow the querent to make decisions accordingly.

FOUR OF SWORDS
STILLNESS

The Four of Swords usually depicts a funenary monument in what appears to be a chapel. It is a moment of rest and quiet, silence and reverence, retreat. "Stillness" is a solid concept to speak about the contemplation and inaction that are inherent to this card, revealing a moment of pause, meditation and rest. 

In real-life this can be interpreted in many different ways. Sometimes, the best thing to do is nothing at all, and this is contemplated in the meaning of this card. As well, similar to The Hanged Man in its passivity, it can speak of a situation that doesn't develop further for better or for worse. Positively aspected, it can be a "no news is good news" while negatively aspected, it can be seen as stagnation or even disinterest. 

FIVE OF SWORDS

INNER
CONFLICT

In the traditional depiction of The Five of Swords we see the aftermath of a battle. The defeated party walks away while the so called winner stays in a defensive position still. There are no real winners in this situation, for nobody is pleased with the hidden costs of the confrontation. For this, "inner conflict" is the concept of choice to illustrate the card's meaning. 

In real-life, this can address mixed feelings about a person or situation, being in a circumstance that challenges pre-conceived ideas or even principles. Positively aspected, it can be an exchange of ideas or a difficult conversation in which the querent's needs are expressed. 

SIX OF SWORDS
JOURNEY

The Six of Swords is a card of transition and movement. In a way, it can be seen as the little sister of "The Chariot" though it has somewhat different implications. In its traditional depiction, this card portrays three individuals on a boat facing the right side, though the two passengers do so in a contracted body positions. The right side, with its association to the future, speaks of moving forward, and yet, while the destination of this journey is known to the paddler, it may be unknown and uncertain for those above, who are leaving a familiar situation. 

In real-life, this can be interpreted as an unwanted but necessary journey, a journey of healing, a transition into the unknown. Positively aspected, it has similarities to The Chariot, portraying movement, progress and the development of a situation, or even speaking about a real journey, trip or move.

SEVEN OF SWORDS

STRATEGY

The Seven of Swords gets a bad rap and is usually associated to betrayal, which is true, but is not all that this card has to offer. For this reason, my word of choice is "strategy". At its core, this card refers to an individual or situation in which one has to do what one has to do to get their way, and that can be used for good as much as for evil. 

In real-life, this card brings a sense of intentionality and premeditation to the reading. Applying one's strategy and not being guided by pure emotion but looking at the big picture is required. When it's more ill-aspected, it can refer to betrayal, cheating and manipulation. 

EIGHT OF SWORDS
LIMITATIONS

In the Eight of Swords, we see a blindfolded, bound figure surrounded by swords. There is an open path ahead and yet she is unaware of the clear way ahead. My word of choice for this card is "limitations" whether real or perceived, as depicted in the card, two things can be true at the same time: The perceived limitation (the blindfold is real, the ties are real, the swords are real) and the open path that the figure is oblivious to. 

In real-life this speaks about the visible or invisible ties that condition our behaviour: Assumptions, expectations (whether our own or from the outside), guilt, tiredness, a sensation of pointlessness or entrapment. Positively aspected, this card indicates that there is a way forward even if the perception is the opposite. 

NINE OF SWORDS

WORRY

The Nine of Swords represents all that keeps us awake at night. For that, the most fitting word that I could find is "worry". While this is a word with negative connotations, the truth is that most things that we worry about don't really come to happen. While unpleasant, there is an upside to it, and it is that it is not necessarily a reflection of the reality. 

In real-life, this card suggests that fears and concerns are driving the situation, or that anxiety can be peaking. While it can indicate, depending on what surrounds it, that there can be tangible cause for concern, when there's a lack of substantiation for it in the reading, I tend to make a more benevolent interpretation of it. 

TEN OF SWORDS
ROCK BOTTOM

It is not a surprise that "joy" has been chosen for what's generally deemed as the most positive card of the deck with no downside. However, I don't like seeing the cards in absolutes because nothing in life is, and while The Sun is a very positive card, I also see it in its shadow as getting your way, the same way that a child who eats a lot of candy but then their tummy hurts.

In real-life, The Sun brings a nuance of possibilities, growth and enjoyment to the reading. However, it not always ensures that the joy will stay. One may get what they want, but that may not be the ideal situation down the line, and by itself it does not grant that the result will provide long-term happiness.

PAGE OF SWORDS

A WINDY DAY

(Earth of Air)

In Judgement, the dead rise to confront the final destination of their souls. Without getting too biblical, this is a moment of reckoning in which souls are examined. Actions or lack of thereof and the motives behind it will be seen, and there will be the corresponding reward or punishment, hence my choice "deserving.

In real-life, this is somewhat simplified to a moment in which one is confronted with the consequences of their actions for better or for worse. In its most light aspect, this card speaks of forgiveness or a new opportunity, as well as the chance to begin again with a clean record. 

THE SUN
JOY

It is not a surprise that "joy" has been chosen for what's generally deemed as the most positive card of the deck with no downside. However, I don't like seeing the cards in absolutes because nothing in life is, and while The Sun is a very positive card, I also see it in its shadow as getting your way, the same way that a child who eats a lot of candy but then their tummy hurts.

In real-life, The Sun brings a nuance of possibilities, growth and enjoyment to the reading. However, it not always ensures that the joy will stay. One may get what they want, but that may not be the ideal situation down the line, and by itself it does not grant that the result will provide long-term happiness.

JUDGEMENT

DESERVING

In Judgement, the dead rise to confront the final destination of their souls. Without getting too biblical, this is a moment of reckoning in which souls are examined. Actions or lack of thereof and the motives behind it will be seen, and there will be the corresponding reward or punishment, hence my choice "deserving.

In real-life, this is somewhat simplified to a moment in which one is confronted with the consequences of their actions for better or for worse. In its most light aspect, this card speaks of forgiveness or a new opportunity, as well as the chance to begin again with a clean record. 

THE SUN
JOY

It is not a surprise that "joy" has been chosen for what's generally deemed as the most positive card of the deck with no downside. However, I don't like seeing the cards in absolutes because nothing in life is, and while The Sun is a very positive card, I also see it in its shadow as getting your way, the same way that a child who eats a lot of candy but then their tummy hurts.

In real-life, The Sun brings a nuance of possibilities, growth and enjoyment to the reading. However, it not always ensures that the joy will stay. One may get what they want, but that may not be the ideal situation down the line, and by itself it does not grant that the result will provide long-term happiness.

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