The Three of Swords tarot card represents a period of emotional upheaval. When this card is drawn in a reading, you may know what it is referring to. If you don’t, it serves as a warning for what is yet to come. The reading foretells that life will throw a curveball your way, and you will be caught off guard, resulting in heartbreak and hurt.
This card also serves as a reminder to hold the things you care for dear to your heart. Hug your loved ones and tell them how you feel. Count your blessings and know that at the end of every storm comes a beautiful rainbow. You may get knocked down, but you overcome anything that comes your way.
Three of Swords Key Words
Before diving deeper into the upright- and reversed Three of Swords tarot meaning, and its connection to love, career, and life, below a quick overview of the most important words connected to this Minor Arcana card.
Three of Swords Tarot Card Description
The Three of Swords Tarot card face is illustrated by a floating heart pierced by three swords. In the background, we see dark clouds and a heavy downpour.
The heart represents all that is good in life: love, compassion, and warmth. The three swords that pierce this heart are representative of hurt, pain, and damage that we all feel when going through life’s lows.
The imagery in the background illustrates the gloomy mood that results from the sudden onset of negativity in one’s life.
Three of Swords Tarot Meaning
The Upright Three of Swords signifies a sudden and unexpected blow to your emotions. When you see this card in a reading, it often foretells the sudden loss of a loved one, the realization of betrayal, or the end of an important relationship with someone you loved very much. Whatever the situation, it will cause a great deal of pain and suffering to you. As terrible as this might seem, there is a silver lining.
You can trust in yourself to dig deep and find the strength to overcome whatever comes your way. No dark cloud can linger on forever. Remember that the way you feel now does not encompass how you will feel once the dust settles. The intensity of emotion you feel now will subside over time. Pour love into yourself and trust that life goes on. Happier days are ahead for you once this period has passed.
Money and Career Meaning
In a career tarot spread, the Three of Swords is not a good omen. It can denote emotional discord or grief surrounding the loss of a job or of an opportunity you really wanted to be successful. It can also mean that a lack of effective communication at work will cause great anxiety and pain to you.
If you are having a problem at work, take the initiative to clear things up. The best way to do this is by opening a line of communication with your supervisor or the involved colleague. It is all up to you to change your circumstances.
The alternative interpretation of this card is the loss of your job. It is important to remember that while your career may seem like the most important thing in life, it is just a small part of the big picture.
Take this time off to focus on things that you wouldn’t normally have time for, like spending more time with family members or doing something you enjoy. It is okay to feel let down or disappointed, but don’t let your sadness take over your life. Put one foot in front of the other and move on to bigger and better things.
Love and Relationships Meaning
If you draw the Three of Swords in a love spread, heartbreak or betrayal is in your midst. This situation is especially difficult because most of the time, our love life encompasses much of what makes us feel happy and secure. When there is conflict or a sudden end to a romantic relationship, it knocks us down.
When a relationship ends, try to appreciate the good that came out of it. You have learned things that will help you along the path to finding the person that’s meant to love you. Even the letdowns in life serve a purpose.
At the very least, you can count this as a learning experience and use it in the future to guide you in a new relationship. Take some time to focus on you before jumping back into the dating game. You’ll need to make sure you’re really ready before you start seeing someone new.
Health and Spirituality Meaning
When the Three of Swords turns up in a health spread, physical and emotional problems for you or someone you care about might be present. The Three of Swords can be indicative of cardiac issues. Now is the time to pour your attention into taking care of yourself physically and mentally. Maintaining a positive outlook will be instrumental in your recovery, so remain optimistic.
Three of Swords Reversed
The Three of Swords in the reversed position tells a story of triumph. Like the Major Arcana card, the Devil, the Three of Swords has a more positive meaning when flipped upside down.
If this is how the sword trio appears in your reading, you are overcoming what has knocked you down and becoming a better person because of it. You are no longer allowing negativity and pain to get the best of you.
Instead, you are focusing on the positive and letting go of the sadness and hurt that has ailed you for so long. Keep moving forward with this path. Doing so will allow you to leave your pain in the past once and for all.
If you’re still finding it very difficult to move on from a recent loss or break up, the reversed Three of Swords tells you that you need to go through an emotional purging to let go of your past.
Although this can be challenging, it’s needed to move on and not getting stuck in the moment of grief. If you learn to accept your circumstances and focus on the good things in life again, new opportunities will come your way!
In relationships and love, the three of swords reversed can be a sign that you’re experiencing difficulties. If so, the card advises you that it’s time to bury the hatchet. It also serves as a warning to be more conscious about what you say, so you won’t regret it later.
Three of Swords: Yes or No
The Three of Swords paints a picture of sorrow or loss. The separation from something or someone you love is likely on the horizon when you see this card in a spread. For this reason, the answer to your question in a yes or no reading is no. Moving forward with your plan will likely lead to hurt.
Important Card Combinations
Are you curious if the period of emotional upheaval also applies when the Three of Swords is combined with other cards? Below I wrote down the most important card combinations of the Three of Swords.
Three of Swords and The Fool
This card combination shows an inability to commit to things. If you have been playing around with the idea of starting a new relationship, the Three of Swords combined with the Fool tells us that you will struggle with deciding to pull the trigger.
Now is the time to figure out what is holding you back. Is the thing that you are giving so much power over your life worth it? It may be time to take a look in the mirror and finally make a move.
Three of Swords and The Magician
When this duo appears in a reading, a breakdown in communication is causing serious issues. You must be mindful of the way that you are presenting yourself and your thought. Communication is an important building block for all relationships.
Someone you care for deeply could be warded off by your actions should you choose not to pay attention to this. Examine yourself closely and make sure that you are communicating as effectively as possible to minimize any damage done as a result.
Three of Swords and The Hermit
The Three of Swords and the Hermit are an omen that you are lonely or will soon feel lonely. Perhaps this is as a result of ending a relationship and consequently having difficulty adjusting to your new life. You can handle this by reaching out to those around you. A family member or friend may be able to offer you the support and comfort that you need. All you must do is take that first step in reaching out for it.
Three of Swords and the Eight of Cups
If the Three of Swords and the Eight of cups appear alongside each other, you are surrendering yourself for the benefit of others. If you are compromising your own beliefs or needs/wants to keep the peace, know that you should always put yourself first.
This realization is a difficult one to come to, especially if the person in question is someone that you deeply care for, but it is imperative. You cannot fill another’s cup if yours is empty. Ensure that you are getting what you need before you think about others and you will get the fulfillment you seek.
My Favorite Three of Swords Cards
The floating heart pierced by the three swords is one of the most iconic images in the tarot. Therefore it shouldn’t come as a surprise that there are a lot of stunning variants of this card. Below you can find a small selection of my favorite Three of Swords cards.
Three of Swords In a Tarot Reading
That’s all for this card’s tarot meaning! If you have pulled the upright or reversed Three of Swords card in your spread, did the meaning make sense to your situation in life? Just remember to count your blessings and know that at the end of every storm comes a beautiful rainbow.
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