Like the 8 of Swords many of us find ourselves trapped by our own mental blocks. Perceived barriers can sometimes be harder to get around than physical ones. Notice that the woman in this image is not guarded, nor are her legs bound. She could easily walk away from this situation, but it is fear and ignorance that keeps her motionless. Her eyes are blindfolded, making her unsure of where she is headed. She feels constricted and no doubt senses the blades around her. The problem is that the more she stands still the worse her situation becomes. Movement, or better yet change, is the only way out!
The Eight of Swords reflects that you feel trapped by your own thoughts and perspectives. The woman in this card is blindfolded and bound, trapping her into thinking that she has no way out. However, if only she could remove the blindfold and change her thinking, she would see that she does indeed have options. So, the Eight of Swords suggests that you need to look at a difficult situation from a new angle. Draw upon your intellectual self and your emotional self to determine the best path forward, one that avoids any possible victimization or restriction. – Biddy Tarot
You DO have options. There is always something you haven’t tried yet! There may even be things you HAVE tried that didn’t work out the first time. This does not mean you should give up! Case in point: my brother’s dog Banks.
Banks learned at a young age that he couldn’t knock down the pet gate. As he grew big and strong (very strong) he continued to believe the gate wouldn’t budge if he went near it. Now he is full grown and the gate is broken. Rather than buy a new gate, my family began propping the gate against the doorway, which would make it utterly useless if Banks decided to plow through it, but low and behold he does not even try. They jokingly call it “hot lava” because he won’t even go near it if they lay it down flat!
This is a funny thing to joke about because it is ultimately good for the functioning of their household. They don’t have to buy a new gate and Banks’ can’t jump all over guests. When you apply this story to human beings however, it becomes less comical. How many of us learned not to do something when we were little because it was dangerous or someone else dubbed it wrong. How many lessons from our past have we swallowed as absolute truth, not even bothering to push against them to see if they still stand strong? How trapped are you, really? Have you tested the limits of your boundaries lately?
Here we can take a lesson from another furry friend Michael (short for Michael Jackson).
Michael is the runt of a litter of six kittens. He is so small that he is able to squeeze out of the pet crate my sister-in-law set up for them. Not only is he small enough to squeeze through the cracks he is also a curious and innocent little creature. I almost stepped on him while making my way out of the kitchen and when I saw him I grabbed him and took him with me, over the dreaded pet gate beyond the land of the kitchen. He was then able to roam about freely (except for when I felt like snuggling him).
What is the difference between these two creatures? I believe it has something to do with his child-like innocence. Michael didn’t know he wasn’t supposed to leave the pet crate and so he explored his options freely. Banks is an explorer, but clearly has boundaries that he has clung to since puppy-hood. Were he a human being I would advise him to try re-examining some of those lessons learned as a child, and to do so with an innocence and curiosity that is natural to very young children.
If you are not sure where to begin, take a moment to observe the 8 of Swords above. Close your eyes and imagine being blindfolded, bound and afraid to move. What are the bindings that are holding you back? Work? Money? Health? Try to imagine your situation creatively and then imagine removing the blindfold and seeing a new path waiting for you. What does your imagination come up with? Is there a creative solution to your problems after all?
I am sure there is, it is just waiting for you to recognize it and take your first steps toward liberation.