Today’s random writing is brought to you by: the Five of Swords, the Four of Cups, and the Ace of Wands.
5S. Five of Swords
Tempering, purifying, cutting away. Energy, courage, defense of the wronged, might for right. That which is temporal will be cut away or burned away.
If reversed: Cruelty, wanton destruction, misuse of power. The subject of this card (not necessarily the Querent) has not yet learned that we receive what we give, or that we are all one, and that what is done to one is done to all.
A rocky hilltop, being defended by two men with swords. Two more men on the slope below (right) appear to be attackers, but their posture indicates they are retreating. A third attacker lies at the feet of the defenders, apparently slain in the aborted effort to gain the hill. All five men are in red robes and carry swords (except the fallen man whose sword ended up stuck in the hill a bit below his body.)
On the top of the hill (left) sits a woman holding an infant. She is at the base of a very tall tree, some 25 feet from the base to the first branches, its top not visible in the picture. Behind the hill and right, we see a lake or large river, and on the other side of the water, we see a large mountain, covered in snow, which monopolizes much of the background; its peak is not visible in the picture either. The clouds visible to the left and behind the mountain appear far away, and look like rainclouds.
The message seems to be that the two men are clearly defending the woman and child. This is the “defense of the wronged” part. The similar dress suggests that the five men were comrades in arms, at least before they turned on each other. Perhaps we can infer that the brave and righteous will remain to stand the test of time (like the tree) whereas the wicked will fall and be forgotten. The lesson is that cruelty (such as attacking women and children) damages not just the oppressed but everyone, because it reduces the whole human experience. Those who would be cruel to another don’t understand this yet, but they will be cut down in the end because they divide themselves rather than uniting themselves.
4C. Four of Cups
Devotion, perfect love, expansion of emotion. Emotion in the right place, growth in circle of loved ones, a desire to serve the gods. Forgiveness.
If reversed: Tyranny, cliquishness, infidelity, lack of devotion, snobbery, an unwillingness to give what you insist on getting.
Four people stand on a bridge, beneath a starry night sky, holding up their Cups. Three people are on the left facing right (one man and two women) and one is on the right facing the other three (a woman). They seem to be raising a toast to each other and their friendship. All four people are dressed in long blue robes. The three on the left have their Cups in their right hands, and the fourth cup is held in the center by the man on the left and the woman on the right, appearing as though he is offering it and she is taking it. From the fourth cup, it looks like a spray of yellow motes is rising up into the sky to mix with the stars.
The bridge is made of stones, and a mellow creek flows under it, snaking around the grassy creekbed. In the distance we see a few pine trees and some hills. The night sky is clear and dark and full of stars.
The scene suggests an initiation rite, and suggests that the woman is being accepted into the group. Expansion of emotion and growth of a circle of friends is clearly represented. The strange lights fizzing up and out of the Cup suggests that Magic is afoot, and that this group is part of something greater, so maybe perfect love, devotion, and service of the gods can be inferred here. I’m not sure how forgiveness fits in. Maybe the forgiveness is represented by the water under the bridge.
The group is apparently expanding, whereas if they were to refuse the entrance of a fourth member, that would represent tyranny and cliquishness. If the three people have four cups, why not offer it to a fourth person? To not do so would be snobbery, and would mean that one was fortunate to receive and didn’t give in his turn.
1W. Ace of Wands
A new idea, something not before considered, a new way of looking at things, creative thought, invention, enterprise.
If reversed: Stagnation of mind, a refusal to consider new ideas.
The Ace shows a naked gold glowing man is in the center of this picture, seeming to fly through space against a backdrop of stars. A moon is visible below him, and some comets or meteors are visible behind him with their streaks up and to the right (giving the appearance that they are falling down and right. The glowy avatar-looking man is turning to his left, reaching out to grab the Wand which is floating to the right of the picture. His body is turned, suggesting that he is travelling toward the left but has turned his upper body halfway around to reach to his left (our right). Above the Wand, we see a white crown, in pure glowing white suggesting that it is made entirely of light. Above the gold man is a partial drawing of another man, traced in light but not as bright as the crown. The smaller man-drawing above and behind the avatar-man shows only an upper body (waist up) and no details of the face. The light-drawing figure has arms stretched out both ways (one to each side).
The idea behind the description is “A new idea”. The Wand is shown with a crown of light above it, but it looks like all the Aces have a crown of light above their respective Items. I’m not sure what the symbols mean (such as the moon or the meteors, or the backdrop drawing.) Perhaps we are just supposed to know that Aces mean a new beginning and that Wands mean creativity or ideas.
The differences between the aces are: the avatar figure, the celestial bodies, and the backdrop constellation-like light-drawing figure. As shown here:
Ace of Wands: Gold glowing man, a moon and falling meteors, and a drawing of a person with arms outstretched
Ace of Swords: Normal-colored man with long black hair, a fire, and a drawing of a lion
Ace of Cups: Blue glowing woman holding an orb, a large cloud, and a drawing of a huge bird
Ace of Pentacles: Blue glowing woman, a large cloud and some small clouds, and a drawing of a bull’s head
The other Aces represent: A new action (Swords), a new emotion (Cups), and a new skill or potential (Pentacles). This suggests that Wands are about ideas and creativity and the mind. The Wands in all the pictures are always growing two or three green leaves, even though they have no roots. So it is a weapon of creativity, as opposed to Swords which are lifeless and cold and used for cutting living things down.
Taken together, they seem to be saying: A new idea, tempering or purifying, and growing a circle of friends united for good. Maybe it’s about uniting for the common good and taking a stand for what we believe in and how these lead to new ideas or new creativity.