The Wild Unknown tarot - IX Swords

Winterchild

I mentioned this card in my thoughts on the X of Swords... When I first looked through the deck I immediately saw this as a magnified part of the ten card. The eyes, and the horn of the bull.

It could be something else completely.... I haven't checked the book at all yet for any of the cards.

Anyway to me this is what is is.. a horn and two eyes with maggots feeding of them... a macro shot of the ten of Swords. If this is the case it could maybe be a warning of what can happen if you carry along this path....if you don't stop and advice is not taken... or help not gained you could end up in that very dark and inescapable place of the ten.

It reminds me of addiction, of the rot setting in, it reminds me of Charles Dickens Scrooge, and how the ghosts of the future and past cometo haunt him and warn him of what will happen if he doesn't change his ways.

Then we have the other side.... (the 9 of Swords always has an escape route... ) the Swords are in perfect order, they bring the whole mess together so it looks almost like art... the art of nature? The order of things, the food chain... continuation... whatever the pain of man or beast?

Life goes on anyway whatever? With or without your consent.. wether you decide to catch the bus or fall by the wayside....

Be very keen to see what others feel about this....
 

celticnoodle

Well, I must say this is one card in the deck that I do not like at all. I think it is because of the grossness of the image here. I'm not sure if that is a horn. I thought at first it may be a claw, but then, I realized there were many other 'sharp' parts along the edge, more like teeth. So, could this be in fact the jaw portion of an animal, and its teeth??? I really don't know. The eye balls are there as well, and maggots climbing in and around these items consuming what is there. its just a disturbing image.

But, first of all, if we break it down, take the nines and relate it to the hermit card. it indicates a time of meditation and introspection, which quite honestly I saw more in the image of the previous card to this--the 8 of swords. *shrugs* however, since this image is just hard for me to look at and really get anything but disgust, I'll look to both the 9 and the swords.

swords are all about air, action and communicating. they can be at times productive or they can be slanderous and harsh. words can build you up or tear you apart. In action, the sword can be destructive or it can be protective. so swords have to be used delicately or they can be dangerous.

nines are also about balance. with the swords suit things are a bit scarey, so it is somewhat unbalanced unless you exercise control. As you said already, Sulis, there is an escape route here, which is why perhaps the last image in this deck (8 swords) would have been a better image IMO.

all I can say with this card if it were to come up in a reading would be to say it is a warning to you to be careful with what you do and say. because words and actions can define you. They can also either harm you or help you. It may be better to step back and not say anything or do anything for the time being. just take time to meditate on it and exercise extreme control.
 

Sulis

I get the feeling that it's a jaw bone too but I'm not sure, it could be a claw.

9s for me say 'almost there' - they are the ending before the 'too much' of the 10. 9s relate to The Hermit so they are cards of self examination and assessment. In the 9s we look back and see how we've got to where we are now and also look forward to see how things will progress once the next cycle is started.

So for me, this image says that problems are almost over, there is literally almost nothing left of the thing that is being decomposed here. With the 9 of Swords there is also an element of over analysis, of picking something apart too much, causing worry and I can get that from this image too..

I don't do many readings for other people these days so this card has never come up in a reading for someone else - when it does, I'm sure that the meaning will be clear as that seems to be how tarot works for me. It's shown up in a personal reading a few weeks ago when I wasn't feeling very well and the image seemed to fit how I was feeling at the time (as if I was being pulled apart and was in lots of pain)... The 9 Swords has always been a card about pain to me but usually head pain, especially when I'm using a deck that uses the RWS images.. This one seems to show a more general pain but pain non-the-less...
 

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Winterchild

iX Swords

But, first of all, if we break it down, take the nines and relate it to the hermit card. it indicates a time of meditation and introspection, which quite honestly I saw more in the image of the previous card to this--the 8 of swords. *shrugs* however, since this image is just hard for me to look at and really get anything but disgust, I'll look to both the 9 and the swords.

You know this sparked another abstract thought about this image... Introspection... looking in, analysing what is going on at a deeper level... getting out the rot and finding the good and the pure....


the maggots getting to innermost point of the animal.... ultimately leaving only clean bone without rot... ??

Just a thought....
 

Sulis

You know this sparked another abstract thought about this image... Introspection... looking in, analysing what is going on at a deeper level... getting out the rot and finding the good and the pure....


the maggots getting to innermost point of the animal.... ultimately leaving only clean bone without rot... ??

Just a thought....

I like that.. It puts a more positive slant on the over-analysis and picking apart interpretation that I got.. Getting down to the bare bones of something or really delving within...

Thanks :)
 

lark

I like this card...such a fresh take on the 9 of swords.
It is the nightmare card for me, but also how things can seem so much worse in the dark than in the light of day.
The light always seems to sort out the darkness.
This card represents that out of kilter world of night terror.

When we see a thing out of place...or jumbled up, the usually recognizable unrecognizable because it is in the wrong place or time or space.
This card brings that feeling to light brilliantly.
We find a certain beauty in the Death card in this deck because we recognize the bird as a bird.
But what the heck is this all jummbled up worms and eyes and jaws or claws??
We fear it because we can't recognize the parts.
And on some level we understand we will be in this state one day ourselves.

When I was little we used to sing a jump rope song...I don't remember all the words but one line went like this.

The worms crawl in the worms crawl out the worms play penucle in your snout....the rude kids said made peepee...LOL

There is nothing worse I think than thinking of our body in the ground being devoured by worms.
Nature having her way with us.
This card recognizes those things we fear whatever they are and pushes them into the light to be disected and looked at and made recognizable.
Knowledge casts out fear.
 

Sulis

Lark said:
When we see a thing out of place...or jumbled up, the usually recognizable unrecognizable because it is in the wrong place or time or space.
This card brings that feeling to light brilliantly.
We find a certain beauty in the Death card in this deck because we recognize the bird as a bird.
But what the heck is this all jummbled up worms and eyes and jaws or claws??
We fear it because we can't recognize the parts.
And on some level we understand we will be in this state one day ourselves.
Lark, I love what you've said here about this card and you've picked up on one of the main themes of this card; that it's almost impossible to tell what the image actually is.. It's a jumble of bits and pieces and we do fear it because we can't recognize the parts...

Lark said:
This card recognizes those things we fear whatever they are and pushes them into the light to be disected and looked at and made recognizable.
Knowledge casts out fear.
I think you've nailed what was making me so uncomfortable about this card and isn't that exactly the essence of the 9 Swords? Thank you :).
 

lark

Oh good, I'm glad it made sense.
I have found on the ground under our big oak tree a jumble of parts like that left over from a hawk or owl's dinner.
I think like a murder scene we can feel that heavy energy of past actions...actions we will never see, but can only guess about...and sometimes magnify to frightening proportions.
 

crystalwings

The strong vertical lines at the back convey a lot of potential energy that isn’t moving. I’m looking at the centre object has a jaw bone: A lot of tension can be stored in the jaw causing headaches under stress. The black teeth have a very jagged appearance meaning issues that are bothering you can no longer be ignored… (May even grind their teeth) The eyes are the windows to the soul and here the soul lays naked for all to see, hmm... feeling vulnerable. Has the eyes are looking in slightly different directions and obviously not where you would expect to see them they're not seeing straight and may be getting facts mixed up. Maggots thrive on dead and decomposing tissue so have been used therapeutically to clean out dead tissue on a living body, so in this picture I see death decay and rebirth ( metaphorically speaking). Crossed swords intertwined with image facing downwards, gives the feeling of intensity and suffocation with no space to retreat... panic attack. The one vertical sword at the bottom of the card: Hitting rock bottom before finding some stability.
 

Pixna

I couldn't make heads or tails of this card when I first looked at it. In addition, I found it repulsive. But, wow -- your interpretations really helped me understand the imagery and make sense of it.

This is indeed the "nightmare card," and what's pictured here is what makes it work so well as that. Yes, this is a depiction of our greatest fears -- death, decomposition, extreme confusion -- not knowing who or what or where we are.

Crystalwings, thanks for helping me gain better understanding of the eyeballs looking in different directions, the suffocation and lack of escape imposed by the downward swords so neatly arranged, and the purpose of the one sword hitting rock bottom.

Lark, I appreciate your making me smile (something that's hard to do when looking at this card) with your reminiscing about that childhood song (which was part of my childhood too, except we sang it with "ants" rather than "worms"). Oh yes, that sums up this IX Swords perfectly!

Even though I'm still very squeamish about looking at this card, it has (to my great surprise!) now become one of favorites in the deck simply because of its rich, complex symbolism that contains unexpected layers of depth and meaning.