The Three of Swords has been known as the card of sorrows. In Waite’s deck, it is depicted as three swords piercing a heart. My early notes on the card couched it in terms of the primordial wounds of our lives. For me, it represented the lifelong stories that I told myself about loss, and it being at the center of everything for me.
At some point, it turned up on a bright sunny day, and the somber depiction didn’t seem to fit my mood. It occurred to me that in order to let the light in, we have to keep an open heart. Perhaps the wounds of our lives are what allow us to let in the light.
Today when this Three turned up, I thought it was the Ace at first (clearly not enough coffee yet at that point). The phrase that came to mind was “that which you are seeking is seeking you.”
Ben-Dov has this one as “cutting through a quandary and going forward in a clear direction.”
Threes, in general, represent creativity, community and collaboration. Swords, of course, are the suit of the mind. So this one could mean “let’s put our heads together.”
For me, at this time, I think that it has to do with a newfound practice of bhakti, and the learning (in community, albeit online) involved in developing it.
This card is another example of how a single, simple image can represent a wide range of meaning, depending on the deck, the context and the consciousness of the reader.