9 of Swords

XIX The Sun Sets a Holiday Table

141127 XIX The Sun Leaves
Tarot Leaves

Since XIX The Sun insists on dominating this month, let’s let it host a Thanksgiving feast.

As you remember from Tarot . . . It’s Easier Than You Think – as well as the recent XIX The Sun posts – the Sun is self-actualisation. Those three dots under the sun on the maple leaf of Tarot Leaves bring to mind body, mind and spirit fully engaged in living and growing.

Who else shall we bring to bask in the life-giving energies of the self-actualised Sun? How about the varied lot that we’ve met over the past couple of months.

How would XIX The Sun interact with the welcoming XXI The World? And how are the Father of Water (King of Cups) and XIX The Sun getting on at their corner of the table? How about the anxious 9 of Swords and the wise IX The Hermit? What do XIX The Sun and XXI The World have to offer 9 of Swords?

XIX The Sun seated the Ace of Cups on the other side of the Father of Water. How are the beginning and end of that suit getting on together? The volatile Knight of Wands is next to XII The Hanged Man. Who’s likely to be most influential in that pair?

Imagine as many combinations as you can at the Thanksgiving table. How do the cards help each other? Where do they clash? The discoveries you make will help you when reading multiple card spreads.

Enjoy the full spectrum of energies available to you through the tarot this week!

I’m grateful to all the students and blog readers for your part in my professional life this year. May you have much to be grateful for in the coming year.

Weekly Card 9 of Swords Revisited

141030 9 of Swords Renaissance
Renaissance Tarot

Well, here’s one of the “scary” cards, just in time for Halloween. No skeletons or ghosts, just your friendly Roman charioteer with a victim in tow. You’ve seen the frightened kitty and the up-all-night versions before. Remember, 9 of Swords is ideas, concerns and communication connected to integration and security.

It’s always intense to see cards like the 9 of Swords in a spread. They’re as much your friends as the more pleasant cards in the deck. Think of them as the notice that there are spooks afoot. If you went out on Halloween without a clue what was up, it’d be pretty terrifying to run into monsters and zombies. Since you know what’s going on, you don’t have to freak out about the dripping blood and hollow eyes.

How would you be if you were tied and dragged? (Be sure to look around when you’re done imagining; come out of your “let’s pretend” well before you hit panic.) How do you handle learning that something like this could be coming up? What would you do for a friend, if it were?

How about if you’re the “victor” – the charioteer? Who would you need to be to do that to someone?

What if you’re both? What if part of you is dragging another part to death?

Misery and Revenge are the words up in the corner of the Renaissance Tarot image. How are these two related? What miseries do you need vengeance for?

There’s definitely a “doing it to ourselves” component to 9 of Swords. We can use all those swords to cut ourselves loose from the desperate or vengeful situation. Storytelling, mastery of communication, sharing ideas in the greater community all figure into the positive potential of 9 of Swords.

Looking at tarot tradition, the Renaissance Tarot blends the old tradition of “pips” on the minor cards – pictures of swords, wands, cups or pentacles in the number noted on the card – with the newer tradition of illustrative images.

So what sort of stories are you telling yourself? Remember, Stephen King and self-torture aren’t your only options.


If you’re looking to learn more about Tarot, I’ll be teaching level 1, Tarot . . . It’s Easier Than You Think, on Wednesday, 5th November, and level 2, Tarot 2 . . . We’re Not in Kansas Anymore, on Friday, 12th December, through the Berkeley County Adult Ed program.  Call 304-267-3585 for more information and to register.

And you know where to find me for phone, email, or in-person tarot counseling.

Weekly Card 9 of Swords

140327  Cats Eye 9 of Swords
Cats Eye Tarot

Uh-oh, this doesn’t look good.  Whatever will I do?  I’d better protect myself.  I’ll prepare for the worst.  And I’d better take something to settle my nerves.  Oh, I just don’t know what to do.  I just know it isn’t going to turn out well!

There’s the 9 of Swords for you.  It sends us scrambling to hide under the bed, even if the very big noise was just the vacuum cleaner on the other side of the house.  Especially if we just did something somebody somewhere sometime told us wasn’t a good idea.

140327  RWS 9 of Swords9 of Swords is often called the “nightmare” card.  You can see in the Rider-Waite-Smith illustration that someone’s being kept up at night through sorrow or worry.  Dark night of the soul, eh?

What we really need with 9 of Swords is a safe place to retreat for a rest, so we can think straight.  Hiding under the bed can be a useful short term strategy (if you’ve got fewer dust bunnies than I do!); eventually, you’ll want to find someplace a little more comfortable.

We want to use our thoughts to make sense of our experiences, rather than to spin endless replays or worst-case scenarios.  We need to accept the truth of what got us to where we are, and climb that ladder of swords to a better place.  Remember, swords indicate communication and ideas, as well as concerns.  We can talk with others about our dilemmas, and educate ourselves about possible solutions.  Being alone with our thoughts is not a bad idea, but torturing ourselves with them definitely is.  It’s time to face our fears.

Our way of thinking got us into our perceived tight spot; a new way of thinking can lead us back out.

Find a restful retreat to sort out the old experiences.  Let your acquired knowledge lead you to new beginnings.
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