Rider Waite Smith Five of Swords Tarot Card Meaning

Five of Swords


A temporary victory that's actually a loss, the Five of Swords shows us how the ego can become overinflated and wreak havoc on our relationships and connections. This is a card that believes that the ends justify the means, no matter how many people get hurt along the way. As such, it shows us how our minds can lead us away from the impact of our actions and detach us from what's happening on the ground. This card shows how abstraction and justification mask our selfishness and ambition, though only temporarily. Ultimately they cost of this victory becomes clear and those who have been hurt reject or fail to help the one who hurt them. This card can illustrate both positions - the victor with the swords in the foreground or the defeated. 


Conflict, Pyrrhic victory, cruelty, carelessness, ruthlessness

Appears As

Deceit, power plays, hurting others with ones actions, attempting to dominate a situation, shady behavior, betrayal, coming out ahead, cheating.