Tyldwick - Four of Swords


The wheelchair is a symbol of being incapacitated, but in this case it is not the body that is the problem but the mind. It is the result of over-thinking, or “analysis paralysis.” We’ve become like a little motorized toy car that has run into the wall and continues to bump into it without going anywhere. What we need to do is stop thinking about the problem and rest our brains. I’ve been amazed in the past that as I’m falling asleep or waking up in the morning, I’ll suddenly find the key to unlock the puzzle that’s been driving me crazy. The solution can also come when my mind is distracted by some mundane task like weeding or cleaning. The other symbol in this card is the round window that reminds me of a porthole in a ship. Part of the vacation our brains need includes shutting off all the advice and suggestions from other people (no matter how well intended it may be). Like recuperating from an illness, this process can’t be rushed, so we might as well have a seat in that wheelchair, relax and see if we can nod off…



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swimming in tarot

Note that the window is so high up that the person in the wheelchair wouldn't be able to look out of it. In fact, even if they got to their feet, it would be too high to look out of for a fresh view. The window has a stone surround, and the swords in it are bent into sort of a circular pattern--thoughts can go round and round, but not escape. Light is not coming in through that window, either, but from some place off to the right--the "future" side of the card, that must be waited for to arrive.

Those exercise wheels for hamsters come to mind, that spin and spin without going anywhere, but wearing out who ever is spinning them, like thoughts that keep you awake at night, without resolving anything.

The four and the nine of swords in this deck remind me of each other; they are both fixed squares (2x2, 3x3) with thoughts not going anywhere any time soon. Air doesn't like to be fixed in place and stagnating, does it.