King of Swords: A Lesson in Forgiveness

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It's probably because he is the most unforgiving king out of the four kings; am I right? King of Cups will forgive you if you are truly and authentically sincere, King of Wands will forgive you if you continue to validate him through your worship, and King of Pentacles will set aside your differences if you are still able to contribute to his cause and if your goals are aligned.

King of Swords, on the other hand? King of Swords stands completely realized and actualized in his truths. Having inherited the Suit of Swords' polarized worldview, it's highly unlikely for him to change his mind about something or someone. Once he's made his decision--once he's arrived at a logically processed and meticulously calculated conclusion--then it's settled. He has passed his judgement, and his judgement is, more often than not, quite final.

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Just like us. We from time to time can be unforgiving. And feeling "unforgiving" doesn't necessarily need a trigger, an antagonist, or an opposing force. It could simply be a refusal to let go, or the inability to move forward with the resentment and judgement that you have for someone or something. It's especially difficult when you have been bullied, wronged, mistreated or abused., and the other party isn't available for a healthy, constructive and peaceful resolution/closure. Often, we tell ourselves that we weren't wrong--we aren't wrong to pass judgement, since we were the ones who were wronged.

King of Swords is so precise and so articulate. When that kind of archetypal force becomes fixated on the wrong's a recipe for unresolved rage, brewing indignance, and perpetual hatred. King of Swords don't really care about repairing his heart when he's trying to move on. He owns a sword. A sword is used to cut and draw blood. It's an inevitable bloodbath when that distorted rage becomes unleashed upon others, and it's excruciating torture when that sword turns inwards and digs into one's innards.


Personally, I feel like when King of Swords falls into his shadow side, he is basically a tyrannical baby trapped in a never-ending loop of cynicism  He can orchestrate the most elaborate blame-game and participate in the most sophisticated drama, all in the name of justice and self-righteousness. Really, what it is: self-victimization. When we seek to move on through diminishing others, through judging others to be wrong, through holding a polarized stance: it stops us from growing. Even if we're right, you know? Even if everything we said turns out to be the truth. Even then. It can be so...empowering, to label ourselves as the victim, right? It gives us the right to judge, to rant, to blame. It gives us a false sense of power. It makes us feel like the King...of Swords, high up in his throne, defending and protecting his truths and boundaries.


When King of Swords shows up, I know he is telling me to stop judging and just let go. Forgive. Stop being so mad all the time. Stop complaining. Stop bitching about how people have hurt you. Stop listing reasons of why you are right and why the other person is wrong. You're perpetuating your own misery. Forgiveness isn't a game. It's not a power struggle. If you're acting like King of Swords on a power-trip, then you should reestablish your connection with this court card. Not as a tyrant, but as a king. A king cares for his subjects and the well-being of his kingdom. If you're on his light side, his "king" side, you should care about your own well-being, too. A king can't do good work for his kingdom, his subjects and his people when he is busy waging wars and cutting down those who oppose him. A king can only do good work when he is fair and balanced. Similarly, we can only do good work when we are fair and balanced.


Forgiveness, after all, is for giving. It's about giving yourself space. Giving yourself freedom. Forgiveness is a space you hold for yourself. You cultivate that space so you have more room for the things that make you happy, for things that enrich your life, and for things that allow you to evolve and grow. So why not take a step back and make space? Why not make space so you can hold it, feel into it, and welcome it? Why not?


Have you ever had a moment when you feel like the Tyrant of Swords, instead of the King of Swords? Where all you wanted to do was to point fingers, to assert your own justice, to prove people wrong, to invalidate them? Are there moments where you could have judged less, where you could have taken a step back to make room, to reveal an vast open sky--a soft breeze in your heart?

Do you think you are finished, DONE, with being pent-up and angry, once and for all?