The Five of Swords shows someone (you?) spoiling for a fight. You’re in the war zone and this conflict can’t be avoided. Unfortunately, this conflict is likely to be unequal, unfair, or abusive.
You do have a choice, though. You can fight this unfair fight or you can learn from the situation, grow, and move on.
Of course, the better option is to learn from this situation. Fighting this battle will likely end in defeat. Even if you do somehow come out on top, the victory will be hollow and you’ll lose much more than you hoped to gain.
Traditionally, this card shows a mean-looking man holding three swords, with two at his feet. He’s looking over his shoulder at two defeated men walking away. There’s something about his face that makes this guy look like a jerk.
The jerk might be someone in your life, or it might be YOU. If you find yourself playing the role of the bully, stop. There is a deeper fear or desire driving you. Deal with that deeper issue instead of taking your pain out on the people around you.
Keywords for the Five of Swords Tarot Card
- War, violence, bullies
- Victory through deceit, poor sportsmanship
- Betrayal, loss, defeat
- Failed relationships
Keywords for the Five of Swords Reversed
- A fair fight
- Peace after a violent act
- Moving past resentments
- The lies come out
Patterns and Correspondences of the Five of Swords Card
- The Swords = rules the mental and intellectual world
- Suit of cards = spades
- Timeline = hours to days
- Number 5 = the turning point
- Zodiac sign = Aquarius
- Element = Air
Keep reading for sample tarot readings using The Five of Swords card, but first…
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Five of Swords Tarot Card Meanings for Love
This is not a good card for love and it may indicate an abusive relationship.
Not every relationship is meant to last, but they are all meant to teach us something. What have you learned from your current and past relationships? Are you ready to move on?
If you are in a rocky relationship, be honest with yourself. Your words, choices, and actions are contributing to the situation. You are as much responsible for allowing and enabling this bad behavior as your partner is.
You wouldn’t tolerate this bad behavior from your best friend, boss, or a stranger. Don’t stay in an unhappy situation unless you both are doing the work to make it better. You deserve so much more than this.
If you are looking for a new relationship, beware situations where there is an obvious power difference. This could be age, money, or status. Overall, I’d say now is NOT a good time for love, so be careful if you go hunting for it.
Five of Swords Tarot Card Meanings for Work
In a practical and material sense, this card can indicate office politics, dirty tricks in the workplace, or a hostile takeover of your company.
Watch your back. Keep your secrets close. Even people who seem trustworthy may betray your confidences. They have their own worries, problems, and fears. You are not their priority. Protect yourself and keep your standards high.
If you have been playing dirty and trying to win at all costs, this will soon come back to bite you. Reassess your strategy and motivations. You will not win through deceit or manipulation. That’s a game you don’t want to play.
Five of Swords Tarot Card Meanings for Health
The Five of Swords tarot card indicates a conflict, tension, loss, or betrayal.
If you are trying to get healthy or are facing a health problem, don’t take shortcuts or try to cheat. It won’t work and you’ll make things worse in the long run.
There are no pills, diets, or trendy exercise machines that will solve your problems. Stick with the basics and don’t expect overnight success. The process can actually be as enjoyable as the results, if you make it so!
You may be suffering from abuse. This may be abuse from someone else, or from yourself. If you have been abusing your body, it is coming to a head. You can’t continue punishing yourself in this way. It is time to get help.
Five of Swords Tarot Card Meanings for Money and Finances
This card indicates theft, betrayal, and deceit. Not good when it comes to financial decisions.
Right now, don’t trust anyone to manage your money for you and don’t make large investments until you completely understand them. This means completely.
If you are concerned about someone else’s behavior, you should be. There is something going on behind the scenes and it isn’t in your favor.
Don’t be a bully with your money, either. Using money to manipulate or control the behaviors of others is abusive. There are far easier (and more compassionate) ways to get your needs met.
Five of Swords Tarot Card Meanings for Spiritual Guidance
This card is a reminder to look deep within at your own negative behaviors. We all have our ego-led shadow side. We all do stupid stuff, make terrible mistakes, and have deep regrets.
These dark, shadowy behaviors and choices are a part of being human. If you continue to ignore, overlook, or hide them, you will never grow into the fully-realized person you are meant to become.
Start by forgiving yourself. You did the absolute best you could at the time.
Until you embrace and accept your negative qualities and reactions, you’ll never be able to fully accept your whole self. You need the dark to give definition to the light.