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UPRIGHT: Difficult decisions, weighing up options, an impasse, avoidance
REVERSED: Indecision, confusion, information overload, stalemate
The Two of Swords shows a blindfolded woman, dressed in a white robe, holding two crossed swords. The blindfold over her eyes tell us that the woman is confused about her plight and that she can see neither the problem nor the solution clearly. She may also be missing relevant information that would make her decision much clearer if she were to obtain it. The swords she holds are in perfect balance, suggesting that she is weighing her thoughts and addressing both sides of the situation to find the best resolution.
Behind the woman is a body of water dotted with rocky islands. The water represents the emotions and, while the Suit of Swords traditionally associates with the mind and intellect, its presence shows that the woman must use both her head and her heart to weigh her options. The islands represent obstacles in her path and suggest that her decision is not as clear-cut as it seems. She will have to consider the situation as a whole. The crescent moon to her right is a sign that this woman needs to trust her intuition as she makes her choice.
NOTE: The Tarot card meaning description is based on the Rider Waite cards.
The Two of Swords indicates that you are facing a challenging decision, but you are unclear about which option to take. Both possibilities may seem equally good – or equally bad – and you are stumped about which will lead you to the best outcome. You must be able to weigh up the pros and cons of each choice and then make a conscious judgment. Use both your head (your mind and the intellect) and your heart (your feelings and intuition) to choose the path that is most in alignment with your Higher Self.
In a reading, it may be helpful to draw a further two cards for either side of the Two of Swords to show what it is you are trying to decide upon or balance. You may also like to draw four more cards, for the pros and cons of each choice.
The woman in this card wears a blindfold, indicating that she cannot see the entirety of her circumstance. You may lack the information you need to make the right decisions. You may be missing something, such as the threats or potential risks, alternative solutions or critical pieces of information that would help guide you in a particular direction. Once you remove the blindfold and see the situation for what it really is, you will be in a much better position to find your best path forward. Research your options more, seek outside opinions and feedback and ask yourself what you might be missing.
It is also possible that the woman in the Two of Swords has intentionally chosen to put on the blindfold to avoid making a choice. Are you trying to hide from a challenging situation or impending decision, hoping that if you ignore it long enough, you won’t need to worry about it? Unfortunately, the issue is unlikely to resolve itself, and the longer you delay, the longer you will prolong this present situation.
Similarly, the Two of Swords can reflect indecision and an impasse on an important matter. Again, you can only put it off so long; at some point, you have to make a move.
The Two of Swords comes as a reminder that many of life’s decisions are difficult ones and rarely come with clear-cut answers. The invitation is to make your choices with your best intentions, fully aware of the possible consequences. Avoidance will lead to greater conflict and stagnation.
The Two of Swords reversed suggests that you are facing a difficult decision and cannot decide which direction to take. You are caught between a rock and a hard place, and it feels impossible to make the ‘right’ decision as you believe either option will lead to negative consequences. As a result, you are finding yourself feeling stuck and unable to move forward, which is just making the situation worse.
You may also lack the information you need to make a sound decision. Just as the blindfolded woman is closed off to the external world, you may also be closed off to additional information or alternative solutions that could resolve your dilemma. Or, you might be experiencing information overload, overwhelmed by other people’s points of view and a deluge of information. Sift through the advice available to select only the most relevant and helpful.
The reversed Two of Swords is inviting you to listen to your intuition about this difficult decision. You may need to cut off from the external world temporarily so you can hear your inner voice and allow your wisdom to come through. Trust what you know to be true and right for you. Make your decisions based on your own internal compass.
The Two of Swords reversed often represents a stalemate. You may reach an impasse with a friend, loved one, colleague or supplier. The trouble is that all parties involved are refusing to see the situation from the other's perspective and you are butting heads. Remove the blinders and look at the situation from a different angle. Identify where you can come to a compromise. Otherwise, this issue will not move forward.
The reversed Two of Swords may also suggest you are feeling stuck in the middle of two competing sides. You may be trying to play the peacemaker role, but in doing so, you are just confusing yourself and creating more tension. For example, you may attempt to bring two conflicting family members together in the hope of fostering a harmonious family environment, but instead, you end up being the messenger or the dumping ground for each of their concerns. Decide whether you honestly have a role to play and whether you can create peace between the two opposing parties. Otherwise, get yourself out of there!