A thief believes everybody steals.
E. W. Howe
This week of an important New Moon, bringing us the darkest period in the dark of the year, we get the card I have been expecting since before Election Day. It’s almost a relief to see it show up, although it certainly is not my favorite. After a hiatus of several years, say hello to the Seven of Swords.
Remember that Swords are ruled by the element of Air, so they represent communication, perception, thought, opinions, and the mind. And although Sevens are often lucky, they are also focused on the individual experience of the moment.
This card features a young man sneaking away from a military camp. He is rather delighted with himself, whether for better or worse. Most importantly (and Seven-ish), he is acting alone, counter to the group that is gathered in the background, which is why this is sometimes called “The Lone Wolf” card.
He carries five swords in the most unlikely way, for it seems that he must inevitably slice his fingers. Behind, he leaves two stuck in the ground.
He is smiling — some would say smirking — and the way that he looks over his shoulder, it appears that he is acting in haste and stealth. Mid-stride, he does not look to see what lies before him.
Here we have another of artist Pamela Colman Smith’s “stage” cards, meaning that there is a double horizontal line going across the width of the card like a theater stage, instead of the uneven ground of a meadow or road. This is a hint that whatever is playing out before us is some kind of act, or that there is more going on than we (the audience) may know.
As mentioned, in the far left background, the soldiers of the camp are encircled around a fire. Who are they? What are they planning and who are they fighting? Although the man in the foreground is clearly tiptoeing away with most of their weapons, we do not know who he is, how he got inside, or why he is stealing from them.
Perhaps he is a spy or a deserter. Maybe he is a pacifist trying to prevent bloodshed.
Even Arthur Waite’s commentary is contradictory. “Design, attempt, wish, hope, confidence; also quarreling, a plan that may fail, annoyance. The design is uncertain in its import, because the significations are widely at variance with each other.”
Hmmm.. a bit ambiguous, even for Mr. Waite, wouldn’t you say?
Whether the figure on the card’s intentions are noble or not, it appears he is about to get away with the loot. Perhaps that is why, unlike all the other more gloomily colored Swords, the Seven is dominated by yellows. Despite its disturbing premise, the scenario is definitely hopeful and optimistic in some way, at least for someone. The thief? Or perhaps this is where the thief is finally outed.
What Valuables Are In Peril?
Theft is something that everyone experiences sooner or later. From the adamant “MINE!” of a four year-old caught red-handed, to pilfering from the office supply closet, to the widespread plagiarism and unlawful use of copyrighted material on the Internet, stealing is increasingly tolerated in our culture. Nothing is safe, not even our own identity.
But remember that Swords are not material, physical objects. They represent thoughts and the intellect. .
So this theft is most likely to do with words, ideas, plans, or visions. It could be someone taking unfair credit for a project; or unethical methods of gaining status within a group. Perhaps someone is telling lies (or, more likely, by leaving the two Swords behind, partial lies). The two swords left are just enough truth to give this sneak credibility, maybe even an excuse.
Truth, Lies, and Politics
The Sagittarius New Moon this week is a powerful one, and is yet another SuperMoon (which does not have to be a Full Moon, according to the originator of the term, Richard Nolle).
He writes, “The New Moon on the 29th anchors the last major geocosmic shock window of the month. It’s a window that opens on the 26th, and carries on into December 2. This particular storm cycle looks to be more potent toward the end, from the November 29 through December 2, thanks to the Moon’s south declination peak on the 1st.
“By now, you should know what to expect: amplified seismic activity (M 5+), heavy weather and volcanic eruptions, of course. Eyes to the skies, ears to the weather radio! As always, these cautions apply to Planet Earth as a whole, since the sky, seas and crust are all subject to the tidal effects of the New Moon.”
More specifically to our card, though, my friend Diotima Mantineia writes:
Truth and how we discern it, knowledge, and beliefs will be of primary importance in all our relationships and interactions this month. Epistemology is the word of the month. We’ll all be asking and fielding questions like: “Who can you/I trust?”, “How do you/I know that’s true?”, and “Why do you/I believe that?”.
You can’t make wise choices if you can’t trust the sources of your knowledge and information. Look closely at those sources, because deceit, mis-direction, and misrepresentation will be rife.
Like, say, in this Monday’s lead story about the Twitter-tantrum of the President-elect? The New York Times reports:
President-elect Donald J. Trump said on Sunday that he had fallen short in the popular vote in the general election only because millions of people had voted illegally, leveling the baseless claim as part of a daylong storm of Twitter posts voicing anger about a three-state recount push.
“In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally,” Mr. Trump wrote Sunday afternoon…
Claims of wide-scale voter fraud have been advanced for years by Republicans, though virtually no evidence of such improprieties has been discovered — especially on the scale of “millions” that Mr. Trump claimed.
Late on Sunday, again without providing evidence, he referred in a Twitter post to “serious voter fraud in Virginia, New Hampshire and California.”
A day earlier, Mr. Trump’s transition team ridiculed the idea that recounts were needed. “This is a scam by the Green Party for an election that has already been conceded,” it said in a statement, “and the results of this election should be respected instead of being challenged and abused.”
So, which is it?
Here in North Carolina, the governor’s race has yet to be concluded because the incumbent, who increasingly appears to have lost, is continuing to insist there was widespread fraud and mishandling across the state. His army of lawyers and proxy conservative moneyed interests threaten to tie up this election for many weeks yet to come. Did someone really steal these elections? Or are they about to?
And of course, the other theft story with few answers – to what extent did Russia tamper with the American election? U.S. Intelligence agencies all agreed that it was Russian operatives that hacked the DNC and sensitive emails of key political figures.
But as the Washington Post writes, “If you’re even asking whether Russia hacked the U.S. election, Russia got what it wanted.”
This is dangerous, and not just because there’s no evidence that Russia “stole the election.” Talking about these voting machines distracts us from what such speculation represents: the success of a broader Russian strategy to weaken Americans’ trust in democracy. (Trump’s suggestion that “millions” of people voted illegally, which he stated with no evidence, could have the same effect.)
This election cycle, that strategy manifested itself in the Russians’ strongly alleged involvement in promoting “fake news” and disseminating hacked emails stolen from the Democratic National Committee. These emails hurt Hillary Clinton’s campaign and weakened Americans’ trust in the Democratic primary.
From campaign promises already discarded, to questions about conflict of interest and integrity, the shock waves after the election are still seething with unanswered questions about the honorable actions of those involved.
Yet, like our quote from author and journalist E. W. Howe, what does it reveal about the person who expects theft to be the norm?
Protect Your Sovereignty
Who is telling the truth? Who is pulling the strings? What is the motivation of the one who is making off with the stolen swords? And to what purpose are two swords left behind?
Like in the Seven of Swords, the grain of truth can be the undoing, if no one will care enough to dig deeper, or consider who is proclaiming it and why.
I also often consider the Swords suit to represent the concept of time. If this is the case, then beware, for as the old proverb reminds us, “Procrastination is the thief of time.” Act on your own behalf!
Hate crimes and harassment towards minorities have spiked dramatically since the election. If you have suffered from injustice, what kind of help can you ask for? Who is violating your boundaries? Such events can compromise and even shatter our sense of safety, and may require intense healing and energetic clearing. Do you need to take some time for this?
This week, pay attention to the actors on your own personal stage. Who, in the events that involve you at this time, has real integrity, and who is play-acting? Is someone attempting to take what they have not fairly earned, or what rightly belongs to someone else?
Like in the Seven of Swords, thieves and con artists often believe they are outsmarting their victims and getting away with it. But such behavior is perilous and is bound to eventually bring karmic payback.
As the deceiver tip-toes away from the scene of his crime, he is holding dangerous loot with bare fingers. Woe to us if we are complicit in such actions, either by our silence or by some kind of convoluted rationalization.
Many dishonest choices are made by people who believe they are superior in some way, and so are exempt from the common rules. So be sure to candidly examine your own actions and attitudes.
Keep asking yourself what is being shown to you, and what is kept hidden? Whether it is on a personal level, or in the drama of the national and international stage, seek the full truth. Do not hesitate to confront a thief, or otherwise protect what is valuable to you.
And when in doubt, be sure to ask, “Who goes there?” and “Why?”