The Sword signifies Power, the Will.
Conforming to the analogous meaning of unity, the Ace of Swords synthesizes the significance of the nine Sword cards of which it is the origin.
The mighty blue sword, held upright and with its point lost in the crown, signifies the spiritual, evolutionary impetus of Man towards that The Above, expressing also that which is best in it, and affirming it with a word or an action whose manifestation is indicated by the red flower surmounting the sword’s point.
The result of this state is reveled to Man by the flourish enveloping the point of the sword, that is, by the crown on the mental plane, and by the palm branch, a symbol of sacrifice, on the psychic plane, and by the oak leaf, a symbol of triumphant energy, on the physical plane.
The Sword, which signifies a projection, has been selected to make a mental act concrete. Its shape, in a straight line, suggests the idea of a progression which thought extends with its point to infinity. The lightning, thrown forth from the steel of the sword when we wield it, symbolizes the sudden inspiration which finds a way, assisted by the point which draws on spiritual currents.
It is a right hand which holds the sword, the right signifying will and command. The wrist is turned to the left (with a meaning opposite to that of the hand which holds the Ace of Batons); activity, indicated by the Sword, being complex and having to assume a passive stance, that is to say, of matter, in order to prepare itself. As active intelligence is not able to become manifest without an intermediary, showing the back of the hand indicates that the interior must remain hidden for the same reason: the manifestation of force, symbolized by the Sword, only becomes visible in its external manifestation, and its action must be indirect and reigned in by passivity.
The Ace of Swords, formed by two distinct planes, exhibits a spiritual significance in its upper part and a material significance in its lower part.
Held in a hand, this sword shows that it is still up to the man to seek out spiritual victory, as this is not able to be obtained in any way except through relentless efforts; this sword has the shape of a blue triangle, the search for victories to be achieved through spirituality and balanced by the ternary.
The arm is in a circular sleeve with piping, the colors of flesh and blue, indicating the act in a universe of physical vitality, traversed by psychic waves.
The red cuff, bordered with blue, indicates that the union of the two planes–the psychic and the material–is necessary for action.
The red hilt, with its yellow hilt-guard and pommel, shows that that the will of Man, supported and protected by his intelligence, is exercised in material actions.
The falling flames of different colors show the effective role of energy in the material world, as they represent the fertile germs from which all things are impregnated. They also indicate that the victories which come forth from the energy are never ego-based and that they always spread forth as beneficial rain. The variety of colors shows that their action extends into all three states.
The flowers of the crown, three red and two blue, specify that its domain is both the spiritual and material planes with, however, more power in the later, as that is where efforts must be exercised.
On the rim of the crown are depicted nine ornamental shapes; this set of nine, too complicated to be worked out here, represents the work of perfection which Being, in its radiance arises from the inspiration of the Divine, must perform in order to attain material quintessence, represented by the points of the crown, truncated diamonds.
On the left side, the branch of the laurel, with its flesh-colored stem, its yellow and blue leaves, its yellow and blue leaves, and the blue flower which issues from it, reinforce the meaning that victory cannot find its origin anywhere except in on the spiritual plane and it will only be acquired by force in its three aspects: mental, psychic, and vital.
On the right side, the palm, yellow, blue, and flesh-colored, also issues from a blue flower, and indicates an analogous effort, with the difference that victory will come to an idea, without physical effect, but through sacrifice.
Meanings As They Relate To The Three Planes
This Ace leads to one conclusion: whatever the difficulties, there will be the realization of something, since it is the synthesis of nine other activities and because of that the sword accomplishes its task with inflexibility and without deviating from it.
MENTAL. Intellectual clarification, precision and clarity. The Ace of Swords strengthens all intellectual power, because it is issued by the mental will of the Being.
ANIMISTIC. The absence of sentimentality. This card emphasizes faith, mysticism, or firm convictions.
PHYSICAL. Health. Affirmation of complete progress. Assures that matters have a secure foundation. Repair of nerve impulses.
INVERTED : Mental laziness. Letting things go. Lack of energy, weakness. In certain caes: violence. Sudden cessation of life. Murder.
In sum, in its Elemental Sense, the Ace of Swords represents the active force which Man deploys firmly and with understanding to achieve the triumph of his ideal.
[1.] The basic quality of the Minor Arcana suit of Swords is not altered when the card is inverted, but its forces are then aimed, as a more or less general rule, towards a negative meaning.