In the Tarot, there isn’t any “worst” card, there are no only good or only bad cards. Every card has its own “shadow side” and obviously also its sunny position. For example, the Tower card is one of the most fearful cards and it often represents a sudden collapse, a catastrophe that tumbles down like a house of cards. However, the Tower card can also represent a sudden and unexpected change that can potentially lead to a positive turn in your life. Therefore, a description of a card often depends on how you view it, as well as the context you ascribe to the card, but most of all what are the cards that surround a specific card.
The Ten of swords, the card that is often represented as a bad card, one of the worst cards, in fact. And probably this may be the reason that some tarot readers don’t even use the Ten of Swords in their readings, which is by my opinion disappointing because this way they are taking one dimension out of the deck and ruining the whole concept of ethical reading. Ten of Swords is a card that makes you think about your words and actions in your life, about those choices you are making and those you should be making. But it is also a card of huge drama – just look at Rider Wait’s Ten of Sword – a person has an ear pierced with a sword – is that really necessary to kill someone? Besides, look at the background. The darkness is shifting away and their is a new day in the horizon. And, yes, it will come – the sun always shines after the rain.
The ten of Swords can also indicate the need for rest, and to recover from a burden. Rest is good and you should take it. The Ten of Swords can also mean that it is time for a change.
The Death card usually means “transformation”. It means that you have to change something about yourself to make a better life for yourself. As a matter of fact, life is not going to wait for you until you decide you’re ready for a change. No, no. It will take its course and bring the inevitable change – metamorphosis from a cocoon to a butterfly, a metamorphosis from a seed to a tree. It happens without one’s will. Luckily, this is the course the nature takes.
Remember, death card does not mean that you are going to die. You are probably going though some major changes, and usually for the better, but of course, as always, it is all in your hands. Death can mean the end of something, or the need to change something – especially a bad habit.
Death in combination with the Ten of Swords means the transformation will be painful, but necessary.
Many people want to interpret The Tower as a disaster card when it is really a message to look at when circumstances are holding you back. The Tower looks like a bunch of bricks tumbling down, but in reality they are a bunch of chains that keep you from achieving your potential. However, the ‘disaster’ is inevitable – it will happen and there are no chains that can hold that back. Get ready for chaos – it will be a bumpy ride. Afterwards dry your tears, and build back the Tower better. In a sense a Tower is an opportunity to improve mistakes, to learn from them and never make them again. This time built the Tower foundation stronger.
The Devil can be a card of temptation, and can mean that one must be careful or even resistant to getting caught up in something that may be harmful for them. The Devil card in Tarot can be a warning against having addictions and it often represents a person who has a problem with addictions. When you see the Devil card in your reading, it’s a warning against something or someone who can have a negative, but magnetic influence on you, an influence you cannot resist. What will you do or what can you to take a step back? Should you take that step back? Should you face it and not indulge it? It is all up to you.
Tarot is energy, and each person has their own energy, and when you do a reading for yourself, you will bring in your own personal energy. So, if looking from energy perspective the worst card at times can be Justice because it is a card of completion, it means that something is almost over and you are getting to the finishing point. Justice card is the ultimate card of taking responsibility – you are accountable for your life, for the things you’ve done to yourself, but also for the things you’ve done to others. Justice card represents the Universal truth that life is ultimately fair and just, it is a card of fairness and balance, so it is a neutral card. However, if you’ve done bad things in life, then yes, the Justice card is something to be afraid of. There is an urban saying… Karma is a b**** The time has come when you will have to pay your dues.
There is no one “worst card” in the tarot, except one that constantly shows up too often as a warning or a negative influence. All of the cards in a reading are a reflection of the energy of that moment in time, and therefore all are potentially positive, negative, or neutral.
While some readers might see cards such as the Devil or The Tower as negative, I see them as part of the journey and as clues to potential struggles or challenges that may come into existence if we don’t work with that energy or the parts of ourselves that are part of it. Let’s perceive our lives as a glass half full, right?
The cards are always going to reflect the energy that both the reader and client are picking up. If a reader is not grounded and has a lot of anger and stress or whatever emotion, then the energy is going to be projected into the cards. Therefore is super important to ground yourself, usually in a form of short meditation, both the reader and the client, before a reading. Personally, I am barefoot, with both feet on the ground, and I imagine roots emerging from my feet deep into the ground. I imagine I am an oak, standing there, gathering knowledge quietly for centuries and as my roots go deeper and firmer I am more ready to give you the hidden message from the core of the Earth. Well, something like that. Of course, you can do your own version of meditation or visualization or whatever works best you, which is what you will have to discover for yourself.
Tarot is simply a means of gaining knowledge of one possible version of the future. As you are a human, you have free will, and you are absolutely free to make better choices, but also free to make bad ones.
I have had people come to me for readings when they were very upset and they weren’t able to truly calm themselves down before a reading. Of course, the results of their readings were mostly negative. But I always reminded them that cards to some degree resemble their energy and even though the prognosis was negative, they still have the power to use their free will and choose another path. And believe me, it is also painful to watch people get lost in their reading, especially as I am deeply emotional person (cancer sun, pisces moon), known for taking the burdens of others, but in order to keep my sanity, I had to distance from clients’ reading results. Please, trust me, with all my heart I wish you all only Tens of Cups and Tens of Pentacles, but unfortunately life brings us Ten of Swords and Ten of Wands, too.
It is good to remember, that although both you and I have free will, I have no control over people’s decisions and actions. And Thanks God for that! If the case was opposite, I don’t think I could live with such responsibility. I perceive – and you should too – that people come up to me to seek answers, but not in a form of a definite answer. They have to form one for themselves. Sometimes I may not like the answers I see, but I have to give them. It is ethics that guides me, and not your hopes and emotions. You may not like the answers the cards give, but I do my best not to judge.