Welcome to Full Moon Tarot, a blog dedicated to the beauty and mystery of Tarot.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Card of the Week ~ 10 of Swords

10 of Swords ~ Rider-Waite/Smith
Most decks show the same image for the Ten of Swords ~ a lone figure lays face down in a desolate environment with ten swords protruding at various angles from his back. A little nasty, yes?

The Ten of Swords is similar to the Death card in that it's appearance, while somewhat macbre, should not be taken literally. Both cards appear to auger death but should not be taken literally as such, more rather impending change that will be difficult to accept but must occur for growth. Endings and loss are always associated with this card but look in the distance; there is a beautiful sunrise, heralding the dawn of a new beginning, a rebirth, a rejuvenation of spirit. Remember that the Swords suit is all about the mental, should the Ten of Swords appear you can pretty much guarantee that the person receiving the reading is mentally exhausted, spiritually drained. Things will not be going smoothly in whatever arena you are dealing with because there are adverse conditions or obstacles. You are running on empty, bottomed out, at the point where things can't get any worse. You may be making a painful but necessary break from your past.

A difficult decision may have been pending for some time and action has finally been taken. There is no doubt that the Ten of Swords heralds a difficult period ~ painful loss or release, terrible misfortune, endings, ruin or in some cases hitting rock bottom ~ indeed, the Ten of Swords is the Swords suit taken to the nth degree. Nothing further can be achieved through either thought or aspiration; there is only room now for the new possibilities to emerge but it has to come from a different place ~ hence the sunrise (heralding the new dawn in your life) being in the background and thus different position to the central figure. The ending that is coming in your life must be accepted before the lovely new possibilities can show themselves to you.

10 of Swords ~ Druidcraft Tarot

The good news is though, that it can't get any worse, you have faced the worst that your situation has to offer and you've come through it. The only thing the fellow in the card can do is get up ~ staying where he is is going to achieve nothing, the same way that staying in a negative situation or mindset is going to bring nothing good to your life. Your hopes of the past may be dashed, but new ones will arise in time. One of the wonderful aspects of this card, and indeed of the tarot, is that even within the cards that show scenes of the utmost despair, there is still a beautiful blossoming of hope. Just look at Death and the Ten of Swords; Death rides through town with his scythe merrily taking the citizens with him to the underworld, the Ten of Swords has a figure lying face down in a desolate environment with ten swords poking out of his back ~ yet both have, in the corner, a pure, gorgeous sunrise, a breaking dawn full of the promise that new hope and new direction brings to your life. There is a sense of relief and surrender with this card too ~ you've done all you can do, matters have reached their conclusion, and now there is nothing you can do except explore the new possibilities are in the distance. Past obligations are now concluded; the karmic contract is fulfilled.

There is another side to this card that doesn't foretell of “doom and gloom”. Look at the card realistically; one sword would be enough to be the death of this figure ~ don't ten cards reek slightly of overkill??? The 10 of Swords can also talk about victim mentality and the lower vibrational martyr. You can almost see the figure in the card lifting his head and saying “You think you've got it a bad...I've got a big bunch of swords in my back...count them, ten! But don't worry about me, I'll be alright” We all know someone like this ~ being a martyr is a favorite activity for some people when they get the 10 of Swords. If you're not a martyr this card could be your Inner Guide gently having a joke with you about how you are handling a situation you are in right now. The troubles may be more melodramatic then real and while the suffering in sincere, there may be a hint of exaggeration thrown in. When you're in the midst of a situation in which you have assumed the victim mantle, you think everything is hopeless, hopeless and unfair. While remembering that the Swords suit is the suit of the mind, think of the power of the mind ~ what you visualize you quite often create. The Ten is the last number of the Swords suit, so literally the crappy, hopeless situation you are imagining you are in, you are actually in, most likely through your own creation. This isn't to say that we don't go through hard times that leave us in a state of despair, it just means that at times we can make the situation worse in our own minds, and that this manifests physically. What we think today creates tomorrow. Yesterday created today.

This card is also a kindly reminder that it is the moment that things appear at their worst is the moment when things get better. This difficult time is only a precursor to happier times.

10 of Swords ~ Mystic Dreamer Tarot

You may have literally been “stabbed in the back” or may be the subject of malicious acts or unmerited hatred.

Depending on what kind of spread you have set out for yourself, the Ten of Swords has the following implications:

Work: Your work situation is about to come to an end. Best to get yourself sorted in every way and think through the “next step” if you were to lose or quit your job, for any reason. Whatever situation is being indicated here ~ being badly treated by someone, dissatisfaction with your work ~ it requires no more energy then to get your affairs in order and get on with the next phase of your career.

Love: Sadly, the Ten of Swords is not a fabulous omen in love readings. Something about the relations/situation is not quite right ~ ask yourself a lot of questions, accept reality and don't close your eyes to the truth. You can't force someone to feel the way you do, or act the way you want them to. Someone is not who they say they are.

Finances: You are facing disappointment money wise. This is definitely not the time to gamble, but is the time to take stock. Try not to beat yourself up ~ this isn't the end of the world.

Health: Your health may not be as vigorous as you had hoped. Don't be afraid to call on any means of healing you feel necessary. There is much more to life then meets the eye and miracles happen every day ~ but you have to be doing your part in the healing process. It may be a time to consider alternative healing methods. There have been a couple of times that this card has appeared in a reading for someone and it has literally been acupuncture!

Spirituality: You may be spiritually exhausted through tests in your life that have tested your faith, or you may have let go of some long, deeply held spiritual beliefs that have been hindering rather then helping you. Be careful putting blind trust into spiritual leaders that seem to be acting in your best interests but are only lining their pockets.

The Wheel ~ Druidcraft Tarot

Something I think is a fascinating aspect of the Tarot is that the Minor and Major Arcana are related to each other. The Tens are the lower echo of the Fool, the Wheel of Fortune and Judgment. The Fool is about heading your fate straight into the unknown, which is shown in the Ten of Swords by showing that once the bottom has been reached, the adventure of living and recovery begin, and who knows where that will take you! The Wheel of Fortune serves as a reminder that all circumstances change, nothing is static in life, which is illustrated by the new tomorrow in the sunrise amongst the violent and desolate landscape of the card. Judgment is a card of heeding the call and deciding your path, sticking to it no matter what, which the Ten of Swords echoes in it's absolutist position.

At this time of the Full Moon in the Winter Dreamtime, this card is a timely call to have what is called “the final purge”, which is the purpose of this moon, the “Quiet Moon”. Look at what needs to be cut fro your life for once and for all, and be gone with it before the wonderfully bountiful and creative time of the spring.

1 comment:

  1. Michelle GudmundssonAugust 14, 2011 at 12:17 PM

    there needs to be an 'awesome' button on this blog. what i've just read has hit me like a wave of energy that washes over me and through me like a tasty, satisfying, and pure liquid.

    everything in it just touched me in every way. this is me. I've gone through loss and grief, I'm experiencing a trying but necessary time, i've even been thinking of acupuncture recently as i've felt the need for physical healing as well. i just can't say enough of how much this weeks blog has related to me.