This suit, or path, concerns the intellect and the mind games we play with our self and other concepts. Tools can be anything that our intellect deems useful for progress, and often this means self-interest more than evolution as a village, culture or even a species. The tools themselves are completely neutral, but the way in which we use those tools can be generous or stingy, advocating of good or evil, and constructive or destructive. It particularly relates to our point of view about the world.

The Suit of Swords traditionally calls to the inner warrior who must face the needs of self and society with steely resolve. I often like to point out that if you take away the “s” at the beginning and end of “swords”, it becomes “word” and that is a clue in how to approach this suit. The words we carry around may or may not express our intent, but they certainly wield the power of our intellect and convey our approach.

The suit is ruled by the “air” element and this suggests its real mutability. Think of how fast weather can change, or wind can reverse course, and you’ll understand that when the ancients associated air with the mind they were aware that the mind can change course in life easily and sometimes tumultuously. To be mindful of this when we make tools of the world we live in, can be transformative.

Each card in this suit challenges us to consider how we use our thoughts, how we use our tools and skill sets to get closer to the truth of all. I was inspired by the very young mind as he or she changes the very earth by moving a stone over its surface. I carried this notion of tool change to the unfortunate truth that human beings use animals and even other human beings as tools for selfish nightmares, often culminating in self-destructive mindlessness. It is only when we bring tools into our heart realm that we know we are using our mind for evolution.