respite is needed
The Four of Swords Tarot Card’s True Meaning: Love, Relationships and More
This card represents order and stability, combined with the tumultuous nature of the Swords. The double-edged sword allows you to pick your fate — as long as you listen to your mind and body when a moment of respite is needed.
- Element: Air
- Planet: Jupiter
- Astrological signs: Libra
- Key dates: October 13th to October 22nd
Visual Elements and Symbolism
In the Rider-Waite deck, the Four of Swords card depicts a knight in full armor, lying on top of a tomb with his hands in a position of prayer and rest. One sword is placed parallel to the knight, representing a single point of focus.
Three additional swords hang above him, pointing down towards his head and torso. His body lies in a church, below a stained glass window depicting a woman and her child.
The Four of Swords as a Person
The Four of Swords as a person is calm and non-confrontational. Through experience, they have learned to get along with many different personalities and therefore make great friends and partners.
It’s hard to get under this person’s skin. Even in situations where they’re being attacked, Four of Swords keep their composure and try to arrive at a solution that’s agreeable to everyone.
This person loves their alone time as it allows them to find peace and quiet, away from the stress and minor aggravations of their daily lives. The Four of Swords as a person cannot function without a proper night’s sleep and spends a lot of time daydreaming.
The Four of Swords Upright: Positive Meanings
This card in the upright position indicates a moment of rest. You’ve recently made important strides in your life that are positive yet draining. Your constant ability to push through the noise and pain call for retreat.
Whether it be your choice to temporarily withdraw from the world, or whether it was forced upon you due to sheer exhaustion — these moments are crucial for you to continue moving forward.
Love and Relationships
If you’re in a relationship, you and your partner have come to a mutual agreement that resting and reconnecting are essential for you both right now. You live hectic lives that prevent you from spending quality time together, in turn causing anxiety and a strain on your relationship. However, this time will allow you to find each other once again.
If you’re single, this card represents the need for some introspection and solitude to better understand your current situation and define your expectations. Don’t feel overwhelmed. Recognize that it’s worse to be in a relationship where you feel alone than to actually just be on your own. If you’re honest about your wants and desires, the right person will come your way when the time is right.
Your work life is extremely stressful at the moment. The workload you were once able to handle is starting to feel like a monumental task. This is a sign that you need some time away from work to regroup.
This may call for a few personal days at home to reset, or even a week-long vacation to take in some new scenery. Your refreshed mind will allow you to tackle these stressful deadlines when you get back to work.
The financial pressures in your life are overwhelming. You can no longer see clearly regarding your financial standing. Know that it’s not as bad as you perceive it to be. Take a deep breath, gather your thoughts, and come up with a game plan. Restoring order and organization will help to relieve some of the anxiety you’re experiencing.
Your health depends on your ability to step back, rest and recuperate. If you continue to ignore your body’s internal warnings, you could soon find yourself hospitalized with exhaustion or an anxiety-related illness. Try pursuing meditation and yoga for the physical and mental benefits they can bring to your life.
The Four of Swords Reversed: Negative Meanings
This card in the reversed position can mean one of two things: either you’re experiencing an awakening and regaining your mental strength, or you’ve reached a complete burn-out stage and are on the verge of a breakdown.
The result depends on whether you take the time to regroup and reconnect with yourself. Those who do will be on the path to positivity, while those who don’t will find themselves sinking into a deep dark hole of misery.
Love and Relationships
If you’re in a relationship, the reversed Four of Swords can indicate one of two things; either you and your partner are finally coming to a healing point in your relationship after taking a step back together, or you’ve reached a total breaking point. The cards around the Four of Swords will support the final outcome.
If you’re single, the results are similar. You may be ready to pursue a new relationship now that you understand what you want from it, or your fear and anxiety have grown to the point where you’re scared of meeting anyone new.
If you’re just returning after taking time off work then you’re likely clear-headed and ready to deal with your daily work stressors in a more constructive manner.
If you’ve ignored your body and are pushing through the stress, you could soon experience a mental breakdown. It might be time to cut your losses and find a new job or career that won’t leave you in the same position you find yourself in now.
You most likely feel so preoccupied by your debt that it’s eating away at your mind on a daily basis.
If you made a game plan when you first felt financial pressures, you’ll soon see the light at the end of the tunnel. Alternatively, your financial stress has become so overwhelming that you are cutting yourself off from the world and rejecting the helping hands reaching out to you.
Everything this card has to say points to one thing, and that’s your attention, or inattention, to your health. If you took the time to work on yourself and reset then you’re now in a much better place in all aspects of your life. However, if you continue life with this insurmountable stress you will inevitably experience a complete mental breakdown. You need to start taking care of yourself.
Your Past, Present, and Future
The Four of Swords in the past position represents a period in time when you fixated or obsessed on one thing in your life due to the pressure and stress it caused you. As a result, you likely ignored many other important aspects of your being, including your relationships, work, and health.
In the present position, you’re likely feeling like you don’t want to interact with the rest of the world. This is a result of stress. Your body is telling you that you need to spend some quality time with yourself. It’s unhealthy to always be “on”. The best thing you can do right now is to listen to your body and escape for a while. While this may seem like a rash decision, it’s the best thing you can do for your long-term success.
This card in the future position indicates that you’ll be doing a lot of thinking in the future. Thinking about what you really want in life before making adjustments or changes can make the difference between going down a positive or negative path. While others opinions are valuable, what you need right now is to listen to yourself.
Important Card Combinations
When cards are placed in combination, they feed off each other to create a more well-rounded reading. In some cases, the cards paired with the Four of Swords will challenge the inherent traits that this card possesses.
Four of Swords and Devil
This combination signifies that there’s someone or something in your life that’s making you want to be alone. The Devil could be an abusive lover, a controlling boss or domineering parent who makes you feel like nothing you do is ever good enough.
Four of Swords and Moon
This combination proves the power of rest and regrouping. The time you’ve spent alone has fueled motivation and helped you to discover your true passions in life. The Moon suggests that you will likely discover new levels of artistry and intellect through this experience.
Four of Swords and Judgement
These cards combined indicate that a tense business negotiation or divorce settlement will likely resolve in the manner you had wished. The judgement will be in your favor — you will be awarded the peace you seek.
Yes or No Questions
The Four of Swords card represents two sides of a coin. On the one side there is withdrawal and sickness, while on the other there is rest and healing. The result is entirely in your power depending on the path you choose. Consequently, the answer you seek is most likely “yes”.