The Card of the Day: The King of Swords
The King of Swords appears to be a stern man. In fact for many he is the archetype of "The Man." (The societal structures that unconsciously direct us to assume our place). The King of Swords card asks us to examine how we might be limiting ourselves based on our own prejudices and assumptions.
Are you unconsciously allowing stereotypes to color your view of yourself or others? Do you feel like you are limited and can't get ahead because you're a woman, a minority, gay, poor, disabled or just feel like the deck is stacked against you? Do you look at others that are different from you with assumptions before you really get to know them?
All of us are raised in a world of assumptions, racism, sexism, and phobias. People fear what they don't understand. How can we heal this? Here's how: we challenge our own assumptions. Progress is made everyday by individuals who act with kindness to strangers, with an openess to walking in another's shoes.
The King of Swords is not an evil king. His real interest is preserving the security of the system, which he argues has far more good than bad to it. Although the King looks fixed, look closer... There are butterflies covering his throne. This represents that systems can be changed, societal assumptions can be transformed, divisions can be healed. The King of Swords can actually change his mind! Here's the biggest secret: the King of Swords is actually a part of us. The part that assumes about others, and needs to lose its rigidity.
What part of you feels rigid? Are you dismissing whole swarths of people, simply because they have a different viewpoint, politics, ethnicity, or any other social identifier? What calcified systems in the world would you like to see changed?
In order to change the “system” or even your own fixed attitudes you have to understand the “why” behind them. The King of Swords represents understanding things more acutely, so that you can make reasoned arguments. Sometimes the King of Swords represents a loved one, or relative, that was put in your life to push back on your own viewpoints and assumptions. They may say the craziest things, but they cause you to investigate your own understanding of positions you hold. No matter how different you may find others to be, never forget that they are human beings as well. They are here to learn, evolve, and love. Some of them will be starting from a place you may deem “backward.” This is their own karmic journey. They have the opportunity to grow past the limitations established long ago.
You can change yourself, people’s assumptions, and the world at large, best through love, compassion, and understanding. You will never win a full on “battle” with the King of Swords. He’s heavily entrenched and armored. Approach him dispassionately with clarity and reason.