The Eight of Swords Tarot Card

Reading Time
- August 29, 2022
Written by Aimi Davis 
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Eight Of Swords Tarot Card Meaning

The Eight of Swords is the eighth card from the sword suit.

This card speaks to the power of the mind.

The Eight of Swords shows the sitter just how destructive our minds can be if we allow negativity to rule our lives.

If it appears to you from the spread, you may be living in a prison of your own making.

While your problems are never to be diminished or underestimated, your inability to act has magnified the intensity of the situation you find yourself now in.

There is always a way out. 

The Eight of Swords appears because you may be unable to see your negative thinking or face your fears, which keeps you trapped and unable to step forward.

To find true happiness, you will have to be your savior.

We all go through times when we feel stuck or stagnating, but it's essential to see that our reality can sometimes be worse than it truly is.

When we face our fears, we understand the truth.

Key Facts

  • In numerology, the number eight symbolizes abundance, wealth, and achievement.
  • In Chinese culture, the number eight is also considered a lucky number.
  • Themis, the ancient Greek goddess of law and order, is closely related to the Eight of Swords.
  • It's associated with the element of Air.
  • Many believe that the Fool Tarot card opposes the Eight of Swords.
  • With tarot cards, blindfolds symbolize our inability to see things.

Keyword associations (upright)

  • Stagnated.
  • Unproductive.
  • Trapped.
  • Hopelessness.
  • Helplessness.

Keyword associations (reversed)

  • Productivity.
  • Ambitious.
  • Go-getter.
  • Solution-driven.
  • Freedom.

Eight of Swords card description

Much of the Eight of Swords' meaning can be derived from the symbolism depicted in the card itself.

The Rider Waite tarot card deck's depiction of the Eight of Swords has a woman blindfolded in its center with eight swords staked in the ground, surrounding her.

Her arms and body are bound with a bandage that also blinds her.

The water beneath her feet represents uncertain times, and the castle indicates achievements and goals.

The swords positioned behind her serve as a barrier.

She could move forward if she wished to, but she is too focused on her fears and negative feelings from the past to know that nothing is stopping her from stepping into the future.

Upright position

The Eight of Swords upright appears when you cannot see that you are bound to a recurring cycle of negative events or feelings.

While you may fear that there are forces at play that have you tangled and feeling powerless.

The truth of the matter is that you are.

Your blindfold keeps you from moving into a positive future.

Are you struggling with your fears and anxiety?

What are you so afraid of, and why can't you confront it?

In your current position, there is no clear path ahead. You feel trapped by your thoughts.

Is it a failure, loneliness, or worthiness?

You can be free.

There is always a way to overcome what holds you back.

Journaling can be a liberating activity to get involved in right now.

The process will allow you to free your mind and converse with your inner self without regret or consequence.

Reversed position

The reversed Eight of Swords has a more positive suggestion in a tarot reading.

Much like the Nine and Ten of Swords, the Eight of Swords suggests that you can move forward and let go of the negativity that haunts you.

You have chosen to put your mental health first.

Your spirit guides are incredibly proud of you for doing that.

You have acknowledged the power of intrusive thoughts.

You’ve faced your inner demons and spent time overcoming obstacles.

You are no longer tied to your old life.

Take stock of what still needs to be done, find your feet, and continue to discover your true self.

Love and relationships

In a love tarot reading, if the Eight of Swords is drawn from the spread, then your love life needs some attention.

Whatever form that may take if you are in an unhappy or abusive relationship. 

You need to find a way out.

You may feel trapped or unable to connect. 

In that case, clear and open dialogue can go a long way in mending what has been damaged.

Communication is always essential, and the person you are with can assist you in finding a resolution. It may not be an easy conversation. 

Nonetheless, it needs to happen.

However, if you are stuck in a physically or emotionally abusive relationship, save yourself at the earliest opportunity.

There are professionals you can turn to, do not let your misplaced shame and guilt stop you.

Escape, no matter how complicated it may seem right now, there is a way out.

Feeling trapped or unable to connect right now, but remember that your partner can only work with the information they have.

The Eight of Swords is a sign of moving forward, meaning you need to do something rather than fear the unknown.

Always remember that if you can't find the words or are unsure how to proceed, you can talk to a professional.

If you are single now, the right person will not magically appear in front of you.

Hoping someone will come along and free you from your negative thoughts and unhappiness is a recipe for further unhappiness.

You are the master of your destiny, and relationships are not the path to self-love and fulfillment.

Breaking free from limiting beliefs about your happiness will eventually see you in a loving and healthy relationship.

Put yourself first, work on finding meaning, and develop a healthy relationship with yourself.

As a love tarot card, the Eight of Swords reversed may suggest that it's time to free yourself from the fears or anxiety surrounding relationships.

If you're in an unhappy relationship, it's time to escape that situation and leave your struggles behind.

Career and finance

The Eight of Swords' career meaning suggests that you currently doubt your potential and feel you have made the wrong career choice.

Have faith. You will find fulfillment soon.

You may feel inadequate or stuck in your chosen career path, the money may not be that good, and there may not be an opportunity for growth.

Things need not always be that way.

It might be time to look for a new job. There might not be more money, but you will find greater fulfillment if you search for it.

The Eight of Swords tarot card meaning presents an opportunity for growth.

For you, that may mean leaving your current business or employer for greener pastures.

Do not obsess over the financial strain this may cause you, as this is minor hardship on your way to more incredible things.

Leaving a place that makes you unhappy is never a bad thing. However, in the long run, you will be much better off.

Your financial situation has power over you right now. As a result, you may feel your entire world is restricted, and your fate is tied to your wallet.

Debt or insufficient funds require a change in routine and spending habits.

How do you feel about money?

Are there ways you could cut down your expenses? Are you afraid of what others may think if you can't keep up?

Giving up isn't easy, but the stress and anxiety that financial strain place on you is not worth it. Instead, making adjustments will make you a stronger person.

Embrace the journey.

Is the Eight of Swords a yes or no card?

The general meaning of the Eight of Swords Tarot Card shows your struggles and insecurities. You feel powerless, restricted, and unable to find your voice.

Therefore, when this Minor Arcana card is drawn, it is a No.

However, draw another card for confirmation if the tarot card appears in the reverse position.

Powerful tarot card combinations

Tarot card meanings can become easier to discern when paired with specific tarot cards.

The Heirophant

Suppose The Heirophant appears alongside the Eight of Swords. In that case, it's a sign that your sense of duty or responsibility traps you.

If the Four of Wands also appears, you need help as everything has become overwhelming.

The Four of Wands

The Eight of Swords indicates that you cannot enjoy life right now.

In conjunction with the Four of Cups, the Four of Swords card meaning reminds us that people's thoughts of you are not as important as your own.

Self-acceptance is your ally and the answer to becoming a more confident individual.

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