Visually this card is not a pleasant one to look at, and always gives me a visceral reaction in my gut. Upon further reflection, I am always reminded things may look bleak here, because Orestes is seemingly lifeless and left for dead after being painfully defeated by the three menacing Furies. However this card has a strong message of hope.
This scenario represents the conclusion of a very difficult, and painful time. The fact is, this is the beginning of a new future that lies ahead, now that the truth has been faced. Athene has disarmed the Furies. She has clarity of vision, and impartial judgment. She symbolizes the mind's integration of dark and light, being the goddess of Justice, representing our human capacity to have reflective judgement and rational thought.
This imagery makes me think of the biblical principle about the sins of the fathers being visited upon the children. In other words these inner conflicts are passed down from generation to generation because grandparents and parents cannot honestly face these problems and their children inevitably suffer until insight can be gained. The good news is that once the crisis is over, life can change, and the sun can then rise again.
Athene represents having an impartial reflection, where those involved are not judged. There is always the hopeful possibility of being released and redeemed from our past mistakes and conflicts.