Ace of Swords:
My First Impressions:
This card differs from the RW one in that there is no hand holding the Sword. No need to anthropomorphize natural forces, they speak for themselves?
It is also wreathed with what appear to be three types of plants: a palm leaf, a laurel crown, & a wreath of white roses Mind manifesting tself through nature. In Jane Roberts' books, Seth talks about how thoughts grow & multiply like living things. Thought is part of life; the mind-body connection.
The sword hovers in a blue-and-white cloudy sky, either emitting or reflecting light, or perhaps it is directly in front of the sun. This reminds me of a dream in which I saw a rainbow with the sun directly behind it, shining through the rainbow's colors like colored glass, a terrifying & awesome sight. The presence of spirit behind matter, shining through visible phenomena.
Lightness, airiness, clarity, purity. The beginning of clear thought. An inspired idea. Getting on the right mental track. Singleness of mind.
The laurel crown represents military conquest through violence, part of humanity's earlier stages of development, now transitioning to a new paradigm of problem-solving through negotiation, law, communication, & technology -- the use of mind rather than force, shown by the palm & roses which are symbols of peace. Of course, the power of reason can be used to create more methods of violence, such as ever more devastating weapons of mass destruction, so the sword is double-edged.
The gold eagle wings suggest ancient Rome, a symbol of the human power to direct & organize great resources. Blue & red at the base of the sword repeat the motif of peace & aggression, brain & blood, spirit & matter. Red, blue & yellow (or green, in light wavelengths) are the primary colors, showing balance & wholeness.
Conquest through reason, strategy, confronting a problem. Cutting through lies, illusions or illogic. Beginning a situation of conflict. Remain true to your cause, follow your reason, uphold your rights. This image makes me think of the European Enlightenment & how its rational values led to the Age of Revolution
The spiral helix represents the fact that mind & consciousness are evolving, along with human behavior, including our penchant for war & aggression. Evolution involves a gradual transition from brute physical force to language, logic & communication, & the Swords encompass these themes. I am also reminded of memes
, the ideas, concepts & mental patterns we receive from ancestors & pass on to future generations.
After Reading Robin's Meanings:
Wow, I seem to be right in tune with the artist this time.
Her meanings closely match mine for the most part.
She focuses more on "success, attainment, victory," the outcome rather than the beginning of conflict or trouble often attributed to this card. She explains that the Ace is "the culmination, or perfection of the principles of that suit." (RWT Book, p.128)
The leaf is an olive, not a palm. Shows how much I know about plants.
She says the golden wings represent the idea that knowledge is freedom (as well as power). She doesn't mention Rome, however, which to me is (along with Imperial China) a symbol of humanity's greatest attainments, along with its greatest tyranny.
Knowledge, specifically occult
knowledge, as liberation. This makes me think of "Beginner's Mind", openness to new awareness. Emptiness is also a form of clarity.
The clouds represent the fog of illusion or ignorance to be cut through. Perhaps they are a necessary background to knowledge? Vague, cloudy, unformed ideas are often the precursors of clear insights.