How to Understand the Meaning of the Eight of Swords Tarot Card

A detailed guide regarding tarot card reading and the meaning of the Eight of Swords.

Stacks of tarot card decks next to a candle.

Picture this: You are struggling with where you are at in life currently and feel desperately in need of some guidance. Or, in contrast, maybe you are content, however you still find yourself yearning for that extra bit of understanding. This is where tarot card reading comes into play.

Many individuals strive to understand how they got to where they are at, what it all means, and what their future holds. While these questions are nearly impossible to answer with one hundred percent accuracy, intuition and deep thinking can allow us to have a basic understanding regarding these areas.

Tarot card reading is a useful tool that can be used to aid us in unlocking our understanding of intuition and deep-thinking. It gives us the ability to access levels of our mind that we otherwise may struggle to reach.

There are a multitude of cards you can pull when participating in tarot card reading, however today we will specifically be focusing on the Eight of Swords tarot card. Furthermore, we will discuss:

  • What tarot reading is
  • If tarot is right for you
  • How to perform a tarot card reading on yourself
  • The upright and reversed meanings of the Eight of Swords tarot card

What is Tarot Reading

Before we discuss the meaning of the Eight of Swords tarot card, let’s explore tarot in more general terms. Tarot reading is a way in which individuals can connect with their subconscious thoughts, behaviors, motives, etc. There is a misconception surrounding tarot reading surrounding its prediction of the future.

While tarot reading cannot directly predict the future, it does something even better. It gives us a metaphorical door to our most locked-away thoughts, therefore allowing us to understand how to approach certain situations, relationships, etc. that may impact our future. Our future is not set in stone, it can be melded and changed based on the decisions we make today. Tarot cards can help guide us in these decisions.

Furthermore, tarot cards are not only useful in informing us of our future. Rather, they can also give us clues about our present situation or a past event. Essentially, tarot cards are a guiding point for where we have been, where we are at, and where we are going.

Our past, present, and future are all interconnected. Even a seemingly simple event in your past can have a ripple effect on your present and future.

Is Tarot Reading Right For You?

Tarot cards scattered out on a table, surrounded by candles.
Tarot reading is a good tool to use in understanding your thoughts and intuition surrounding several areas of your life. Image courtesy of HerZindagi.  

When deciding whether you want to try out tarot reading, it is important to look at a few areas. Firstly, you must understand that while tarot is a great tool in understanding your inner thoughts, it is not the end-all-be-all.

By nature, tarot cards are extremely open to interpretation. In other words, one card can be interpreted in a variety of ways based on the situation the reader is applying it to. Therefore, it is important to remember this when turning to tarot cards.

While it can be upsetting to select a negative card, such as the Ten of Swords or Nine of Swords, outlooks are usually not as grim as they seem. If you are struggling with anxiety from pulling negative tarot cards, it may be best to take a break for a little while. Tarot reading is meant to be healing, but it can quickly become counterintuitive.

Another area you’ll want to evaluate is your skepticism. Tarot reading only works if you buy into the idea. This is because tarot is allowing you to connect with the inner workings of your mind. You will be unable to reach this subconscious state if you do not truly believe in tarot.

How to Perform a Tarot Reading

Before you ever have the chance to pull the Eight of Swords tarot card, and question its meaning, you first must do a tarot reading. While tarot reading is rather straightforward, there are some important guidelines to follow in order to get the most out of your time.

Generate a Question

First, it is important to think of a question that you would like to ask the tarot cards. This can be anywhere from extremely specific to very general. Additionally, it can address any area of your life that you wish it too.

This question is what the tarot cards you pull will be giving you insight on. Essentially, the most important part of formulating your question is simply to make sure you feel a deep connection to what you are asking.

Shuffle the Deck of Tarot Cards

Secondly, you should make sure to shuffle the deck. This is an easily forgettable step that is easy to miss. However, it is necessary that you do not skip shuffling the deck because it allows you to physically strengthen your connection to the cards, therefore allowing you greater connection to the result of your tarot card reading.

Randomly Select a Card and Interpret It

Thirdly, once you have formulated your question and shuffled the cards, it is now time to randomly pull a card from the deck and flip it over in front of yourself. Looking at the card, you should determine whether it is reversed or upright. After that, just simply sink into your feelings.

Allow yourself to take the card, the card’s imagery, and its meaning in. Do not rush this step as it is essential to truly take in the moment in order to yield the best results.

Eight of Swords Tarot Card

The Eight of Swords tarot card which features a woman tied up and swords surrounding her.
The Eight of Swords tarot card has both an upright and reversed meanings that tell us different things. Image courtesy of Labyrinthos.

The Eight of Swords tarot card has different meanings for each person depending on their interpretation, however the card does possess general, overarching themes.

Eight of Swords Upright Meaning

In terms of its upright meaning, the Eight of Swords can tell someone who pulls the card upright several things. For example, you may pull the Eight of Swords card when you are in an unhealthy, bad, or toxic situation, relationship, circumstance, etc.

The card is informing you that the draining situation you find yourself in is escapable if you just gather the determination to find your way out. It may be hard in the present, but in the long-run it will be more than worth it.

Additionally, rather than addressing a tangible situation, the Eight of Swords card can also be related to mental turmoil such as negative or anxiety-induced thoughts. These thoughts are making your life significantly harder, therefore it is important to address them in a healthy manner.

This can be done by talking to someone about how you are feeling. Doing so will allow you to figure out the root cause of these thoughts.

Eight of Swords Reversed Meaning

Similar to the upright meaning of the Eight of Swords tarot card, the reversed meaning also heavily revolved around internal thoughts. When you pull the Eight of Swords reversed, it may be because you are surrounded by your self-degrading and negative thoughts about yourself.

It can be overwhelming to be your own worst enemy, and being hypercritical of one’s own self is essentially being just that. The Eight of Swords card is guiding you to break that habit.

Additionally, the reversed Eight of Swords could also be positive depending on the events going on in your life altering your interpretation of the card. For example, the Eight of Swords reversed could be a sign that you have overcome your self-critical habits. This may be the case when you have done your own internal work in order to build up your self-esteem.

Tarot Reading and the Eight of Swords Card

A tarot card featuring a starry evening sky and a woman standing in the middle.
Tarot cards are a great way to stay in tune with your inner self. Image courtesy of AstrologyBay.

Now that we’ve discussed tarot, how tarot reading works, and the meaning of the Eight of Swords tarot card, you are officially equipped to begin your own tarot hobby. As mentioned, tarot can be extremely beneficial. It can help ease your mind, assist you in making decisions, and help you deconstruct your inner thoughts. The mystical nature of tarot truly cannot be overstated.

Elyse Endres

Elyse is a marketer, writer, and lover of dogs, dance, and reading. She resides in Columbus, Ohio.
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