The Five of Swords: Your Tea and Tarot Blog of the Day

--by Hyperion Night of Beanblossom's Tea and Tarot



The Rider-Waite-smith five of Swords Tarot card

The Five of Swords


Competition. Conflict. Comparison with others. Loss. Dishonor.


Tarot readers can be as competitive, backbiting, and snipey as any other group of people. I'm ashamed to say I had an arch rival of my own. I won't mention his name (you'd know it). We came up in the same brutal psychic fairs, but unlike me, who went on to have a small but fulfilling practice, HE got a TV show and built an online empire. And then he lobbied for we Tarot readers to need fortune-telling licenses. Easy for him to get one--he had plenty of money. The way many of us saw it, he was basically pulling up the ladder behind him.


Ultimately, he failed. Long story. High drama. Never mind why. But my jaw still tightens when I think of him. I'm not proud of it, because ultimately it says more about me than about him. In his success, deep down I worried I'd come up short. And that's no way to live.


But it's a good representation of what's going on in the Five of Swords Tarot card. In the Rider-Waite-Smith version, a man stands on a shore holding three swords. Two more swords lie at his feet. He smirks like a jerk at two men walking away. Though we can't see the other's faces, one actually holds his head in his hands as if he is crying. FYI, in the abovementioned divination scenario, I was NOT the guy with his head in his hands. Or maybe I was.


You can't always win. People are going to be more successful than you. But there's no sense dwelling on it. Better to be the guy with his jacket slung over his shoulder and walking away. He lost his sword, but he's not crying about it. He's moving on. And maybe he's figured out that even without his sword, he's right where he's supposed to be. Disarmed but standing, and walking toward his own future, the future that's right for him.


This Tarot card asks us to consider how we may be comparing ourselves to others. Are you being the best person you can be? Or are you trying to be someone else?


Just don't be the sore winner with the swords.

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