Most people are scared of the Sword cards. The Nine of Swords is usually associated with illness, sleepless nights, bad dreams and the over-day burden we often carry on with us for the nights.
Etteilla’s Nine of Swords signify bachelor, celibate, virginity, abbot, and hermit.
The card was called “Lord of Despair and Cruelty” in the terminology associated with the Golden Dawn.
Its traditional astrological attribution to Mars in Gemini is also mainly inauspicious.
On the other hand, Pamela Colman Smith’s astrological blanket in the Nine of Swords for the Rider-Waite deck has given rise to many debates.
The blanket has two distinguish geometric patterns. One is a red rose on yellow background, and the other displays the symbols of Zodiac signs and planets. The symbols are presented with dotted lines on a light blue background.
The rose is England’s national flower. A Tudor rose is officially used, signifying the unification of the warring parties of the Wars of the Roses under the Tudor dynasty. The red rose representing The House of Lancaster, the White, the House of York. The Tudor rose is a syncretic symbol in that it merged the white rose of the Yorkists and the red rose of the Lancastrians.
On the other hand, “English rose” is a description that may be applied to a naturally beautiful woman or girl from or associated with England.
Various folk cultures and traditions assign symbolic meaning to the rose. True love is associated with red roses, jealousy with yellow, innocence or purity with white, mystery with blue, success with orange, and death with black.
In ancient Greece, the rose was associated with the goddess Aphrodite, the goddess of love, lust, beauty and pleasure.
In the Song of Songs 2:1-2, the Jewish people are compared with a rose, and the Zohar uses a “thirteen-petalled rose” to symbolise the thirteen attributes of Divine Mercy named in Exodus 34:6-7.
In the Christian tradition, the rose became identified with the Virgin Mary. The rose symbol eventually led to the creation of the rosary and other devotional prayers in Christianity.
Catalans celebrate Saint George’s Day on April 23, when lovers exchange blood-red roses.
In William Blake’s poem “The Sick Rose,” the rose symbolises love and passion. It is crimson and dark but now sick because the worm has infected it.
Is it possible that Blake’s poem may relate to Pamela’s blanket? It is a path worth investigating.
The planets and Zodiac signs might represent fate, destiny, and the passage of time.
Therefore, the bedspread in the Nine of Swords may symbolise passion and our inability to change things that are determined by the powers of the universe far beyond our reach.
We all had diverse experiences that altered our perception, and we relate differently to specific images and symbols.
As I said regarding the reversed cards in a reading that need to be turned around again, I believe the only way out is through. Problems need to be confronted, evaluated and resolved.
Susie Chang, renowned author and Tarot reader, had this brilliant idea to bring Pamela’s Nine of Swords blanket to life.
She believes there is a balance between Edvard Munch’s The Scream-like anxious character and the blanket that offers comfort and consolation.
She says “that the blanket represents the implicit security of being grounded, alive, and embodied. The demons in the 9 of Swords are intellectual specters! You can wake up to discover that in real life, you are OK! I think the blanket is a reminder of that. Its roses are a symbol of life’s passion and vibrancy; its glyphs are the embrace of the eternal cosmos.”
For many years she thought, “I would like to have that blanket.”
Now we can all have that blanket in five formats: throw blanket, tapestry, comforter, duvet cover, and shower curtain through RedBubble.
Comfort your demons: The 9 of Swords blanket project
RedBubble: 9 of Swords Tarot Blanket by Tarotista
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