Seven of Swords
A man in a tall red hat looks over his right shoulder as he runs off with five swords, having dropped two on the way. He appears to be running away from a military camp, having stolen the swords. His look is one of confidence. He wears a dark yellow tunic. Yellow is the color of the mind and thought, and this man has dark, sullied thoughts. After all, he is stealing, and he thinks he’s gotten away with it.
The problem is that he hasn’t, but he doesn’t know it yet. There’s a group of three soldiers on the hill in the distance, and it appears that one of them has seen him, and that soldier has his own sword raised. If only the thief had looked to his left as well. One may guess that the thief is no longer going to get away with deception, no matter how carefully he tiptoes away from the camp.
The whole world around the man is yellow, indicating that this may all be nothing more than a thought or plan, nothing that actually happened. Of course, the scenario unfolding means that this plan hasn’t been too well thought out if there’s a chance that he could have been caught. Either way, he doesn’t seem to realize this: this is his plan, his idea, and he’s proud of it. He isn’t thinking about anyone else, so he isn’t thinking that the army will see him.
The Seven of Swords is about single-mindedness and selfishness, particularly in the folly of undermining the intelligence of the people around you. This is especially so when one thinks they can cut corners because no one else will notice, or when someone drops their moral compass for a cheap thrill.
The Seven of Swords is also about betrayal, as the man taking the swords was probably a soldier himself. He’s turned his back on his commitment and has decided to defraud the people around him in doing so. Instead of being assertive and leaving honorably or sticking it out, he sneaks away and steals. The Seven of Swords warns, however, that no one gets away with being a weasel, especially not a cocky one.
When the Seven of Swords is Reversed:
When the Seven of Swords is reversed, the querent is being passive-aggressive, but not evasive like the man in the card. They’re staying in the same place but screwing everything up to send the signal that they’re unhappy. They wish they would leave – and others probably do, too – but for whatever reason, stay behind, perhaps out of a misplaced sense of duty.
The Seven of Swords can also indicate that the querent wants to stop being evasive about something and come clean. However, they have a very good reason to think that there will be fallout and possibly a confrontation that ends with someone getting hurt. Since the card is reversed, it’s uncertain whether the person who gets hurt is the querent. However, there will be no kissing and making up.
In a three-card reading, this card means…
Past: In the past, the querent was sneaky and underhanded, or shirked responsibilities and was caught, which leads them to the present moment.
Present: Right now, the querent is betraying someone or trying to pull a fast one and fully expects to get away with it…but they won’t.
Future: In the future, the querent is going to try to shirk responsibilities and go their own way in a dishonorable way.