The Five of Swords
The Lord of Defeat is yet another of the unwelcome Sword cards. It generally appears to indicate that we are in for some disappointment or loss.
In a highly competitive world, we are bound to be defeated by some of the challenges we set ourselves. If we are not to limit ourselves so severely that we never compete for anything, then at some time this card will inevitably come up. And our response to its effect is very important. If we feel shattered and disillusioned, then we will start the process which leads inevitably to the Ten of Swords - Ruin.
The way we face the Five of Swords has a great deal to do with how much effect a setback can have on the whole of our life. If we are able to accept that we cannot be winners all the time, if we are to set our minds to learning from our experiences, if we are to struggle to be positive in the face of adversity, then we can overcome disappointment, and rob the Lord of Defeat of total triumph!
In occasional really bad cases the card can indicate external treachery - somebody deliberately attempting to undermine or damage us. In this case it will almost always come up with other Swords like the Nine of Swords, or the Eight of Swords. If the Ten of Swords appears further on in the reading, then we are in danger of being affected quite dramatically. In this case you would need to consider who you think your enemies are, and take appropriate steps to combat their illwill - never underestimate the power of other people's malice. And don't retaliate with more of the same!
At most times the Five of Swords will indicate much smaller matters than this - you won't get the job you applied for; you won't sell the manuscript this time; you won't get the exam result you wanted; you won't get the house you tried to buy. Look for surrounding cards that indicate the area of your life which will be affected.
It's natural to feel down-hearted when we don't get what we want. But it's rare that every single thing in a person's life is going badly at the same time. So count your blessings, pick yourself up and go and do something nice for yourself. And remind yourself of something - you tried, and can try again. And maybe next time your efforts will be met by the Lord of Success!!