Choosing right over wrong, ethic over convenience, and truth over popularity … these are choices that measure your life. Travel the path of integrity without looking back, for there is never a wrong time to do the right thing.
– Michael Moore
The shifty thief of the Seven of Swords comes calling again this week. Smug in his stealth, he tiptoes away with his loot, while in the distance, the soldiers around the campfire are unaware of his actions.
We do not know his motivation, but he is certainly pleased with himself. One wonders, however, whether disaster does not await him, for he is carrying the five swords by their blades between his fingers, and he smirks over his shoulder, not watching where he is going. Although he may have pulled a fast one for now, he is not really as clever as he thinks he is.
As one of Pamela Colman Smith’s “stage cards,” (where there are horizontal lines that hint the figures are on a theatre stage), there is acting of some sort going on. All is not as it seems. As we witness this scene, what drama is being played out for us?
The Swords suit would suggest that this theft is most likely to do with words, ideas, or attitudes. There is a good chance that someone is manipulating the truth.
The Seven of Swords is often about lying, but is rarely about total falsehood. We can see that there are two Swords left behind, so it is most likely there is partial truth, making the lies more plausible. For instance, it may be the ways we spin the truth to suit our agenda, or even trick ourselves into believing our own exaggerated claims. Someone may be taking credit for knowledge they have not earned; or gaining status based on illusion, or charm. Such guile can deeply compromise the ability of any victims to defend themselves.
This card may also warn of our own unwillingness to scrutinize someone or something that does not possess the honor we would have preferred to believe.
This week will mark the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Amidst all the grieving, flag-waving, and unvarnished bigotry mixing together as that sad day approaches, who dares to ask the hard questions about the lies and half-truths we were fed, that have resulted in perpetual war half a world away?
In a tough economy, when jobs are scarce, it is risky to blow the whistle on unfair or unethical practices. Questions about leaders and others who are popular and powerful are rarely welcome.
Confrontation is no fun, especially when it is facing down someone who has no qualms about subverting the truth. And it is my experience that it is the most kind-hearted who are the least willing to consider they may have overestimated the trustworthiness of another.
This week, be sure to candidly examine your own actions and attitudes. Given some conflicted situation, what are your motivations, and to what lengths will you go? What facts might you be avoiding or embellishing in order to carry out your plans? Do the ends ever justify the means?
Conversely, is there a chance that someone you know is showing you a false persona? What glamour spell may have been cast? What unsavory energy has been allowed to enter your camp?
Who or what is about to steal off with your valuable idea, project, or reputation? What is being left intact, in order to cover their tracks? Should we defy this behavior, or do we just wait and hope they will trip themselves up?
At least keep asking yourself — what is being shown to you, and what is kept hidden? And why? Have the courage to seek the real truth in the dramas you are facing.
When in doubt or in danger, you have the right and responsibility to challenge, “Who goes there?” and “Why?”