A Lesson in the Seven of Swords

We magical people are always learning and I am no different. I feel like learning takes a different route for me these days with my memory issues, but it still happens. Sometimes it’s nice to see things with a beginner’s mind, honestly. These days, a lot of my learning happens intuitively or when something just smacks me in the face. I mean, not literally. Not usually!

I pulled a tarot card the other day like I tend to do. The card I pulled was the Seven of Swords in my Traditional Manga Tarot. I don’t remember what I asked because at this point the lesson is in the card and what I realized rather than the question and answer I wanted.

Seven of Swords RWS

I know the general meaning of the Seven of Swords. In the Rider-Waite Smith deck, the Seven of Swords depicts a person tip-toeing away from two swords while they carry five more in their arms. The person is wearing a green tunic, blue trousers, and red shoes (honestly they look more like socks, but I digress…) In the background are a bunch of tents set up. It kind of looks like how an army camp back then would be set up. In the very, very far distance is what appears to be a castle covered in clouds. The sky is yellow.

Yes, I just described the entire card. Based on the imagery alone, we can see that the Seven of Swords deals in taking something sneakily. It deals in strategy, stealth, and possibly even deception. The person is looking backward toward the camp. Are they looking to the camp to make sure they don’t get caught? Or are they looking at the swords they had to leave behind because they couldn’t carry them?

Seven of Swords Manga Tarot

In my Traditional Manga Tarot, the card is similar but the way the imagery is portrayed is different. The person in the card is still carrying five swords. There are still two swords left in the distance. But the person carrying the swords away is holding them delicately. They aren’t looking back at the swords they had to leave behind. Their clothes are flowing around them, almost like they’ve just made the best decision in their life! The colors are more muted but not entirely dark.

So, what did this card make me realize? In this instance, it was about the swords left behind rather than the ones carried. The Seven of Swords holds a lot of weight around strategy. Yes, part of the meaning encompasses deceit and stealth, but reading the cards involves knowing what will apply to each situation. In my case, I had the realization that the swords left behind were left for a reason. The person shown in the card showed me that I can only carry so much. I can only do so much. I needed to choose the things (Swords, in this case) that meant the most to me and go with those. My priorities weren’t straight and I was carrying way too much.

Out of all the years that I’ve been reading tarot, for some reason, that message never stuck out to me. You might be reading this and think well duh, Megan. Can’t you tell that’s what that means?! But honestly? No! That hadn’t crossed my mind in a long time. Maybe I had realized it a while ago and just forgot. Maybe it stuck out to me at that moment because it’s exactly what I needed to hear. Anyway, seeing the same card from a different deck gave me an entirely new perspective and I am thankful for this lesson from the Seven of Swords. 

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