An introductory guide to the use of the runes for healing, meditation and divination.
My interest in the runes started when I was exploring the world of divination. I liked the idea of single symbols to portray an idea and over the years, I have learnt to use the runes more for spiritual understanding and support, rather than for divining events. This work is based on the course material I use when I teach classes on working with the runes for the first time.
I suggest you buy a runes set for your first encounter with them. Once you are more familiar with the meaning and energy of the runes, you should consider making your own set.
1.1. INTRODUCING THE RUNES
The word rune means `mystery.’ It encapsulates the mysterious and hidden power of runes. There are quite a number of runes and symbols that have been discovered over the years, but I choose to use the runic symbols of the Elder Futhark. This is the ancient runic alphabet of the Germanic tribes most commonly used in Northern Europe dating back to150-800 AD. The word `futhark’ means alphabet and it was found on inscriptions and stones. The futhark was used both as a method of writing and for magical and divination purposes. The runes were carved on items, such as a sword or ring for protection, or cast in order to divine an omen. There has been a great deal of interest in the runes and their symbolic meaning. In modern times, the runes are used for divination and to invoke their magical energy.
I personally use the runes mostly to invoke their energy for purposes of self-healing or healing others and as talismans.
The interpretation of the runes is based on Norse mythology which is the study of the oral accounts told in the Nordic countries (Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Finland) during the pre-Christian times, especially during the Viking age. This age was characterized by many wars, land invasions and the practice of magic. The depictions of Norse mythology reflect a great deal of magical beings, gods and the glory of war. These depictions can be found on the runes, image and picture stones. In later years, scholars captured the tales of gods, the supernatural and war heroes in poems, called eddas.
The Elder Futhark runes as a tool of magic and divination can be attributed to the Norse God, Odin. He was one of the chief Norse Gods, who was renowned for his deep passion and desire for spiritual wisdom and knowledge. He was also willing to share his wisdom with others and often acted as a mentor.
He sacrificed one eye to get a sip from the Yggdrasil, the world cosmic tree. He also hung on the Yggdrasil for nine days to gain the wisdom of the runes. The runes are seen as a gift from Odin to humankind.