Mental self-cruelty. This card isn't necessarily about experiencing cruel actions from others, (unless noted by other cards in the reading) even thought cruel treatment has happened in the past or present. Rather the 9 of Swords is about self-abusive thought.
Negative thinking, feeling sorry for yourself and crying about life; emotions flowing with the tide of events, rather than being a dynamic action in life.
The Thoth 9 of Swords represents the personality/ego as being a victim of its own fears and the spirit is shedding tears of empathy (white tears in the back-ground) simply because the ego isn't listening to the "master within", as it is totally focused on its own nightmare (tears of blood from the swords). Therefore the personality has become a lost child whose own crying "over silt milk" drowns out the wise directions whispered by the spirit within.
There is also a sense of anger that leads to seclusion. As you may have deduced by now, swords are generally about ways of thinking. The Tarot Swords represent the many states of mind, from the Super-conscious (The Greater Self) to the personal self absorbed conscious that we have ignorantly called the ego.
The Thoth Deck Nine of Swords, is also called THE LORD OF DESPAIR AND CRUELTY, or Cruelty in short. This is Mars in Gemini; this is Yesod/Foundation, the 9th Sephira on the Tree of Life influencing Yetzirah in the Astral World.
With a smattering of astrological data, one knows that the fiery energy of Mars, does little good in a sign of dualities.
As stated, this "little good" is shown by the nine rusty swords, dripping blood and poison on Crowley's card.
One may shudder at the despair, meanings of illness, suffering and cruelty this card represents but each of us, who are paying attention to our brain, know this to be a "inner self cruelty" of our Survival based Sub-consciousness that cuts us with the emotionally poisoned blades of embarrassment, low-self esteem, humiliation,self-condemnation, and/or inner disgust. It is the internal Slave Master software, that is installed in our personality by our culture. The Few Who Rule the Many, our enslaving rulers of Money by enforcing individual debt; by controlling definition to make sure that this internal-mental slaver virus is installed in your wetware before you even reach seven years old.
Like rusty hooks of poisonous self futility, this is a hard one to remove! Peer pressure, just drives this poison deeper into self identity. The media, keeps slashing at your self value...."you need this....you need that....to lack them is poverty; is to lack value, "You are nothing ". This Cruelty is at the very least implied, or blatantly rubbed in your face, daily, if not hour by hour. "Resistance is futile", blare the horns of the pusillanimous invertebrates who enforce "their masters will" on others. Faust never new such hell as this!
Life is indeed a mental thing, and indeed, we can be our own worst enemies, just by doubting our own value in the World. To see yourself as Lack, is the necessary software to continue the panicked consumerism that multinational mind programers and/or definition peddlers, want! But before any human judgement, you were already approved into being by your Higher Self. So once again, the Qabalistic axiom reads true,"Above all things, know thyself"!
It's simple really; you had to be approved by all that is Holy, to be made alive! You presence is your Judgment....and obviously you are good enough for God!
You are an Divine answer, to a Divine question, that is what Creation is !
Stop questioning yourself, and become answers instead! Action is the Fiery Spirit that moves you; reaction is usually run by the uncertain animal who thinks the whole universe is out to eat it and fears its vulnerability! "I Am" dares ask, "What am I"? and you are the answer to that question, "I AM ME"! Besides, it is vulnerability that gives us all the great qualities of character so praised by others. The Divine Creative, gave its "Child" mortality so that Spirit could learn discrimination! Immortals don't discriminate any thought as they are not form, therefore not vulnerable to thought. Divinity invented Mortality because its Vulnerability supplies, generosity, empathy, love, tenderness, kindness, respect, gregariousness, politeness, gentleness, ...to name a few powerful character traits. By fearing that vulnerability, we deny ourselves the purpose of our Soul being human!
The Nine of Swords, cruelty, is about you being your own worst enemy, divided against yourself, mentally and emotionally. Always nay-saying before you can ever start a motion. This is a moment of doubt drawn out as a life-time. Sure we doubt our selves! After all every new motion is a risk! But if the Child of Wonder, that innocent curiosity, still has "I's" in you, you're are going to "do it" anyway.
We are always striving forward, we are being Pushed along by the Inner Spiritual Self, just like Dark Energy pushes the Universe of Matter forever outwards. Life is a Driving Force...and the Body is the vehicle driven!
So what this Cruel Nine of Swords implies, is that "a house divide must fall". Get together with yourself and over throw the slaver program that is in your brain. Software can be erased even when its garbage. (G.I.G.O). All software programs know of G.I.G.O., for when software is garbage and programed in the hardware or wetware, all is operational garbage. Garbage in, Garbage out!
The Nine of Swords implies that you must get off your suffering ass of miserable perspective, and ride your thorough- bred of Stallion of Inner-Solar-Warrior; rethink the programing!
It's easy to fail, all you have to do is stop doing. Success, requires a stubborn optimist; your Soul is such an optimist. For even if it kills "itself" (destroys the hardware) trying to accomplish a goal, it just reincarnates and keeps at it!
We all will pound out the bugs of our software (definitions), some sooner than others; but we all will do it eventually, that is the purpose of time/space and sensuality after all! The human power-tool, is also a learning tool that teaches us to discriminate by experiencing success and failure!
Your soul, will just "reabsorb" the software garbage, and try another revision of it in "Hardware" performance, that we know as "alive"; the "I AM ME"!
So, "get over yourself and get on with you! Impeccability is what we do''! Is a correctional software loop, that I run in my self doubting brain. It just overrides the "pity pot" of self defeating thought every time it comes on line. But installing that software loop, took determination, and plane old fashion "jack Ass " stubbornness and constant repetition of a meditation of seconds, done most minutes, until it becomes automatic.
Don't you think its time, we programed our own Hard Ware/Wet Ware! That is the real message of the Nine of Swords.
The Shadow Tarot, 9 of Dark Energy at the Event Horizon/ Sitri, is about Cruelty, Preparedness, and Invisible Help (intuition).
The name and sigil of Sitri is shown on the face of this shadow card:
FROM WIKIPEDIA, THE FREE ENCYCLOPEDIA.Prince Sitri
Sitri (also spelled Bitru, Sytry) is a Great Prince of Hell, and reigns over sixty legions of demons. He causes men to love women and vice versa, and can make people bare themselves naked if desired. He is depicted with the face of a leopard and the wings of a griffin, but under the conjurer's request he changes into a very beautiful man.
Again, the Shadow Tarot is about the survival mind of the animal Earth. We call this the Subconscious, as it is the invisible consciousness of the combined intelligence of every single cell in our inherited bodies. We, Souls are Psyches/Immortal invaders in this realm of time/space and its creations of mortality. Mortals, eat each other to stay alive, and it is indeed a fear based reality. How else would the ridiculous "demon image" come from the dark subconscious of the Christian Monks? By blaming the union of man and woman on coercion from some demonic force, is the way to deny that god created sex, because "God is Sex", or so states the Qabalah and modern psychics. Even atoms are composites of "sexual behavior", were opposites unite to create something more! By fearing Vulnerability, we will also fear sexual union, and by our very negative observation, make the sexual union a "dis-ease" for ourselves, instead of the Divine Creative's way of re balancing our Spiritual, Mental,
Emotional and physical being!
Very definitely, The Shadow Tarot, Sitri card is about "mental self cruelty".
FYI, the word Sitri is mysteriously close to the word "Sita"(Furrow), the Goddess Earth as the wife of Rama (Krishna) in the Ramayana. Sita was the personification of the Yoni, mated to the phallic "ram" whose name meant "sexual enjoyment". That would definitely cause a fundamentalist flesh-o-phobe monk a dire case of apoplexy and a definite must for demonizing, as Krishna was the Hindu Christ!
When the Thoth 9 of Swords, Cruelty-card or The Shadow Tarot/Sitri card is thrown, it indicates that: