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Tarot Post – Five of Swords

Five of Swords (Defeat)


Five of SwordsFive of Swords (Revised) by G A Rosenberg


Freely I entered
The fight was too much for me
Defeated I leave.


Well, It’s over
The battle has played out
and now I’ve lost,
not just the battle
that would have been too easy
I’ve lost myself
In the need to win
I became…changed
drove allies away
destroyed confidences
so that no matter the outcome
I would still have lost…
I believed that if I thought like my foe
I could beat them
instead I became them
and so the defeat completed…..

— G A Rosenberg (2013)

Now the battle has been won
He collects the swords of the vanquished, us.
He walks on determined,
all but oblivious to our shame
He may be weary, we are for sure
with wounds to lick
This day too shall pass
and we may yet win out
tho for now we taste Ashes
Another day will come

— G A Rosenberg (2010)


The suit of swords represents thought, ideas, plans and conflicts. Fives stand for conflict, change and a breaking through to higher thought. The five of swords thus represents defeat, whether in battle or in inner conflicts. It often represents the defeat that comes when we realize how much we have betrayed our own principles in the desire to win. Ultimately no matter how the conflict ends, we end up defeated having lost the intent that gave rise to the conflict in the first place.


Astrological Correspondence – Venus in Aquarius – Venus in Aquarius is innovative in how it chooses to love. Often a loner, it is an energy drawn towards the new and different and hates any aspect of getting caught in a rut. This can result in a sensitivity to the feelings and desires of others but a tendency to get bored and so they may sabotage their relationships in the search for the innovative.


I Ching Correspondence – 47) K’un Oppression –
____ ____
____ ____
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The image is of a lake above water–the lake is dried up– the “superior” man is exhausted by all manner of people and things besetting him. If he remains flexible and stable and maintains his equanimity through adversity than he will come through it fine. Only if he can’t roll with the punches and falls apart will any rough period truly vanquish him. Someone who has developed that inner consistency will find success no matter whatever external situation he finds himself in.


When the Five of Swords turns up in a reading, it often refers to a loss, usually one that feels somewhat humiliating. It may also represent a loss that comes when someone has won through unethical or unfair means and has become humiliated because of it. If it refers to an event that has not happened yet, it could be a warning against going into an unwinnable battle or one where winning it will turn into a humiliating defeat

When the Five of Swords comes up reversed, it normally refers to losses in the past that the person has not recovered from and still have a lot of energy about that is causing us to be reluctant to reengage.

Tarot Card of the Day – November 25 2010

“But there is suffering in life, and there are defeats. No one can avoid them. But it’s better to lose some of the battles in the struggles for your dreams than to be defeated without ever knowing what you’re fighting for.”

–Paulo Coelho

Five of Swords

Venus in Aquarius

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Five of Swords – Defeat by G A Rosenberg