Card Meanings,  Sacred Circle

Key Words: 9 of Swords

Written by: Emma Sunerton-Burle

9 of Swords

Rigidity; fixed ways of thinking; trapped by own thoughts; complication as distraction; unquestioning; shoulds; blindness to options; stereotypes; fear of facing the options available; family patterns; better the devil you know; cutting through old patterns; courage; diamond within; release of pattern into soul light; awakening is possible; breaking out of normality into personal uniqueness; dropping self judgement; leaving a trail of fertile ground for others.

9 of Swords

Comfort in ignorance; illusion of joy and stability; slow awareness; patience with self development; allowing the path to play out; gathering strength through time; structure held until it is time to change; medication to enable transformation; gaining of understanding.

9 of Swords Transformational Potential

When this card comes into your spread you are at a point where you are ready to see things as they truly are. The peace and structure you have built is only on the surface, beneath is you are in conflict with yourself about your lifestyle and this is bubbling to the surface more and more. As you become conscious of what you are following that is another’s path, and what is truly yours, so you can make change. There is a great need to be gentle on yourself in this process – both as you come to understand the past and how you have seen yourself – and also as you tear down the structure before you and release the oppressive forces in your life. The reward is great if you have the courage to be discerning and break your familiar structures.

9 of Swords Questions

1. What structures are in your life that are feeling restrictive to you?
2. Do you have the courage to hear what you really want and honour yourself in it?
3. What do you tell yourself you ‘should’ do? How does this differ from what you want to do?
4. How do you cause yourself inner suffering? Who was it who first treated you this way? You now have a chance to heal this aspect of yourself.

9 of Swords Suggestions

• Draw cards for the questions above if the answers are unclear for you.
• What would your life feel like if you were free to go in whatever direction you like? Spend some time fantasizing about what you would do and how things would be, to allow yourself to explore possibilities – be aware of your feelings.
• Write down all that bothers you about your life at this time; how you feel oppressed by others or yourself. Then see anything another is doing to you as representing a part of you that is oppressing yourself – dialogue with this part of you to find out what it is really trying to achieve for you. Journal your results and feelings through this exercise.

9S Affirmations

I am true to myself.
My path is my own, I choose to share it in the way I want to.
I am unique, flexible and free.
I claim my power over my own emotions and self talk.
I am at peace in all I do.


Emma welcomes any comments on this article or the visualisations you do following this method. Email her on

Emma works as an intuitive psychic tarot reader and runs one to one online training courses on reading with the Thoth tarot deck using a unique blend of intuition and psychological techniques. This has now been extended to working intuitively with RWS style decks too. She also mentors other professional and non-professional tarot readers. She offers visualisation MP3 downloads for intuition development, tarot readings F2F, telephone or distance, and healing – see her website for details: 

Emma has a Bsc in Psychology and is a trained counsellor, counselling supervisor and trainer. She integrates this experience in her Tarot work, and in her self-written training courses for personal development, Tarot, and Tarot mentoring.