The 7s are associated with the energies of Venus and at the danger of harping on old stereotypes of the feminine they are involved with a view of the world colored by emotion, wishful thinking and misconceptions. Things are not always how they seem to us, either because we didn’t have all the facts or because something bent and warped our interpretation of what we saw.
If we let Illusions get in the way of our rational mind - the domain of Air - we find ourselves deceived. This card cuts both ways: it may either mean that we snare ourselves in our own little devious lies and plots or that others are out to mislead us. We may fall victim to a scam or an intrigue, and sometimes our mind is our own worst enemy, undercutting and secretly undermining out own plans.
The Rider White deck shows us a man who is sneaking away on tip-toe from a group of tents that indicate perhaps a fair or a tournament. He’s balancing 5 swords in his hands while two more swords are stuck in the ground behind him. The swords do not seem to belong to him and he glances behind him looking quite smug at his little heist. In the Crowley-Harris deck we see a central larger sword surrounded by an aggressive swarm of six smaller swords that are pointing at it with their sharp tips.
For my card I wanted to show the double aspect of deception – the fact that there is someone who is up to lying and tricks to realize some benefit to themselves and to get something for nothing, but that there is also someone who is a mark, who gets the wool pulled over their eyes and allows himself to be fooled. Cuckoos do not build their own nests. Instead the female seeks out the nest of a particular bird species and lays an egg among the already existing eggs. Her eggs have evolved to resemble the eggs of her target species in color and markings. Usually the cuckoo chick hatches before its step-siblings and either pushes its rivals out of the nest or grows up so fast that the unwitting parent birds are tricked into feeding it instead of their own chicks. Experiments have shown that the parent birds react more favorably to the bill markings of the usurper than to the bill markings of their own offspring. The number 7 for this card is reflected in the seven reed stalks that hold up the nest of the little reed-warbler who is busy feeding a cuckoo chick that is already bigger than its parent.
In a spread the card signifies that someone is willing to do whatever it takes to serve their own ends. They are prepared to lie, cheat or manipulate others to gain an unfair advantage. They may actually have stolen something from someone or they are controlling a situation to the detriment of others to get a favorable outcome. You could be the unwitting victim of such a person or you could be the one who deceives others. If you are the mark it’s time for you to wake up and realize you’ve been had. If you know you’re guilty of not playing fair you need to understand how your actions and your selfishness are impacting others and hopefully rectify the situation.
For a relationship-related question the card may indicate that you are cheating on or betraying a friend or partner or that someone in a relationship with you is abusing your trust and affection to gain an unfair advantage. You’re caught in a web of lies or possible infidelity and you need to either come clean or confront someone about your suspicions.
If the card comes up for a business-related question there are dishonest means at play to get an advantage. Someone perhaps is claiming the work or ideas of a colleague as their own in order to get ahead. A business partner could be lying to you or you are involved in a scam or unsound business proposal. Ensure that your own actions are above board and look out for others trying to rip you off.
If the card is uncovered in an adverse or blockage position it could mean that you are paranoid about being lied to or being taken advantage of. You are so distrustful of others that it’s hard for you to rely on anyone and you are in danger of upsetting honest people with your suspicions and accusations. The card could also mean that you know that you did something bad but have a hard time working up the courage to come clean and to make things right.