The 8 of Swords is a card of feeling or being restricted. When you see this card you will know that you are feeling stuck or trapped in the situation it represents. You might even be feeling trapped and are not even aware of it.
The 8 of Swords is the card of controlling relationships. Obviously, this can be romantic relationships but also parent-child and boss-employee relationships and friendships. You just don’t want to disappoint the other person. You are mentally tied to the person because you feel an obligation to them. You make decisions based on what they want, not what you want.
Often times the 8 of Swords can represent criticisms in general. You will have grand plans to improve your life or career situation because you are not living your dreams. Oftentimes, this will be because you worry about backlash from toxic people around you. Perhaps you are already going for the things you want but jealous individuals are slandering you?
There is also the possibility that you are disabled by your own lack of confidence. You suffer from chronic self-doubt and imposture syndrome; you are your own worst enemy.
Because the 8 of Swords predicts that you will be restricted in some way, this restriction can also be physical. An illness may be on the cards. Illnesses can be serious or not depending on how your spread and reading looks. In any event your health issues could hold you back from getting the things you want.
Like most Tarot cards, the 8 of Swords can appear as a positive. If this is the case, it means that your intuition is guiding you so that you do not make any rash or stupid decisions. Also, if people are slandering and gossiping about you this usually means that you have something to covet; in this context the 8 of Swords is a card of achievement.
The Eight of Swords’ Historical Meaning
Historically, the 8 of Swords has always had a rather negative meaning. It used to be read as a card of sickness, illness and disease. Just as it is read today, the 8 of Swords also represented criticism, blame and conflict.
The Eight of Swords in a Love Reading
Clearly, in a love reading the 8 of Swords can represent a restrictive partner and one who controls and manipulates the others. Your partner might be the controlling one but there is also the possibility that you are the one who places restrictions on your partner.
If the 8 of Swords appears in the outcome or future position of a love reading, this can mean that your relationship will last for the foreseeable future but at a cost. Being with your partner will place a chain around your neck. You may be required to look after their health in the future. Or you will discover that they want completely different things out of life and you’ll have to settle for the life they want.
Asking about the what feelings your potential partner has? If the 8 of Swords appears in this type of reading beware; this means that they like to get a bit sociopathic with their partners and you could be their next target. Interpretations which specifically cover your partner's intentions, feelings and level of commitment are all things I look at in my Love Tarot Meanings e-book.
The Eight of Swords in a Business Reading
As discussed in the general card meaning for this card, the 8 of Swords in a business reading means that you place restrictions on yourself. You may be too self-conscious to put yourself out there and sabotage your success. The 8 of Swords is telling you to stop playing the hiding game.
The 8 of Swords can also represent other people trying to tare you down and down-play your success; they may resort to slander in order to damage your reputation. If this is the case try not to listen too much to criticism. Do your thing and shine brightly anyway.
The Eight of Swords as a Yes or No
Unfortunately, the 8 of Swords is usually a no.
The Eight of Swords as a Positive
In a positive reading, the Eight of Swords can predict;
- You have something to covet
- You’re successful in some way
- Intuition is guiding you
- You do not make any rash decisions
The Eight of Swords as a Negative
In a more negative reading, the Eight of Swords can predict;
- Criticism and slander
- Having controlling people around you
- Placing restrictions on yourself
- Being in bad health
If you’re curious what your lover (or potential lover’s) feelings and intentions are towards you, below I have a free Intentions Tarot Guide. The Intentions Tarot Guide includes tips, spreads and meanings which will reveal what your partner is feeling about you and your relationship. This guide is 100% free and downloadable on mobile, tablet and computer!