The Five of Swords-Defeat, is of the 5th Sephira-Geburah, whose meaning is Severity. Thus Geburah,#5, always produces disruption to any suit. In the Five of Swords there is also the fact that Venus is now ruling Aquarius, such a ruling produces a passive weakness rather than an excess of strength. Besides that fact that Treachery may also be implied, the normally cutting edge wit is also enfeebled by sentiment, making treachery even more disastrous to the person.
Inverting the pentagram, is a sinister sign of "things being turned upside-down",, where thoughts of success have been defeated by unseen severity.
The Thoth Deck 5 of Swords, also represents "self-defeating" thoughts, as the hilts of the 5 swords are individually different, implying confused thinking, making matters even worse. The Swords are 'drooping" and chipped, representing old thoughts being kept long after their usefulness; thoughts, that never worked in the first place; the combination of which can only bring defeat.The Great Balancing Rose of the Mother, is totally missing from this card, and only the 'blood" of Geburah forms the pentagram outline. This is the Cleansing Blood, that destroys the old, putrid and useless "software" of the personality, in-order to build anew. As you can see, this is a severe action to a personality whose denial is its sole support.
When the Five of Swords is thrown during a reading, the querent, or the one the querent has asked about, will be or has been experiencing for the next or the past five weeks, or five months; defeat, loss, malice,spite, slander, and all modes of evil speaking. There is contest finished and decided against the person, whose thoughts of defeat, anxiety, and trouble may be generated by this defeat or help its cause. The 5 of Swords also means grieving unrelentingly after pain and loss, There are issues of malicious, slandering, lying, and tale-bearing thoughts. The presence of a busy-body who enjoys separating friends; one who hates to see peace and love between others. Clever and quick in thought and speech, yet cruel and cowardly, is also suggested.. Not only could all these negatives be thought by another, but they could also be inner thoughts of the querent towards themselves. The very episode of low self esteem.
This is all very sinister, but as luck would have it, it is the beginning of an understanding that past "self thoughts" are either too dependent on the reactions of others to our self, and/or by seeking self-value through others, we are unable to be ourselves....by serving two masters, we can only arrive defeated in purpose. The lesson here, that I often tell my clients, is that you've been created because you are good enough for God/Goddess, by seeking approval from those who cannot build you nor have control over their own identities, you can never be the you that was created in the first place! I AM Me, is our Trinity of Self....Not I Am "wana-be"! Me, is the invention of I AM's self-awareness and is a understanding full of probability, so it is okay to experiment with self-identity. Just remember the axiom, 'think ill be ill, think well be well" ...You've already been well thought of----that is why you exist! It really is okay to love being you!
Thank you for your interest and comments. May you live long and prosper!