I hate the eight of swords. Well, okay, so maybe the word hate is a tad extreme but when I see it my insides react, and I think Noooooooo. It's not the worst card in the pack but for a girl like me, it means a serious amount of torment. The reason for this? I need my headspace to be free so that I can write and get on with the other things that need to be done. When the eight of swords appears I know that I'm going to be wandering round in circles in my tiny mind and the chance of any meaningful output is slim indeed! The main problem here is having way too much information and not being able to step far enough back to look at things from a broader perspective. A frequent image on the card is a woman, blindfolded, hands bound and surrounded by swords. Swords represent the element air which in turn translates to "thoughts" or the stuff taking place on a mental level. In The Ancient Egyptian Tarot (Clive Barrett) the card depicts a path winding up a mountain, and there is a piece of the path that's missing. Two men (and their horses) stand at one side, and the swords are on the other side of the void. The Eight of Swords is most definitely like this in that we can see where we want to be but we just can't quite work out how to get there. More often than not, we need to ask for help when we find ourselves caught up in this card because there is every possibility that we don't possess the necessary tools to build a bridge across that gap. It may also be the case that we have to turn back. The Eight of Swords may be trying to tell us that if we continue in the difficult direction we're taking, we will be able to arm ourselves, but it might be worth asking ourselves - do we need to be armed? The answer here could be yes. The swords can also translate into knowledge or actual learning, and the card could ultimately be a reference to the fact that there is something here that you really need to learn. The horses are a representative of the freedom that you still have. And you do have freedom on your side of the road. Like the cards depicting a bound woman, the choice is yours as to whether you stay trapped and immobile. You risk taking a fall if you go forward and no one ever really wants to go back to where they metaphorically came from, but you can't stay where you are. The Eight of Swords is one of those cards that will usually push people to look for counsel. You need to be able to show them the way out or at least remove their blindfold so they can see for themselves.
Using Other Elements To Balance Things Out
Draw on the energy of Eight of Wands to balance things out a little. Keep yourself mentally stimulated by reading about things that are foreign to you. It doesn't matter if it's a different philosophy or a book on different cultures. Even travel brochures are a suitable escape and may provide enough room for you to move in your head. The other option here is actual learning. Go back to school or do another course that stretches your imagination. A leap of faith might be needed.
The energy of the Eight of Pentacles can help to ground things. Go for short walks but plan your route in your head beforehand. Pay more attention to your diet. Exercise! Yoga and soft martial arts may work especially well. We have the option to learn here too, but the courses would be health based or of a practical nature - something using your hands. Maybe it's time to nurture an old talent? Housework can also fall under this card, but I'd rather be using that as a last resort!
The Eight of Cups....hmm not sure what to suggest here. This card would usually be the outcome to excessive amounts of the Eight of Swords. In other words; you'll get emotionally drained, or maybe you could use the energy to get bored and disappointed more quickly.....which would also stop you from going around in circles in your head. Actually, yes that would work. Invoke boredom and apathy to the point of tears! Personally, I'd be going for the pentacle or wand option but hey, it's whatever floats your boat ;) The Eight of Swords is an excess of air so box clever when looking for an escape.