An Alphabet of Enlightenment
by Madisyn Taylor
When casting the Runes you will find illumination in the unlimited possibilities laid out before you.
Many millennia ago in northern Europe, ancient peoples sought a means to understand their roles in the world at large. They created runes—an alphabet of symbols that served both as a functional writing system and as a unique system of divination. Though the symbols themselves were little more than varying combinations of straight lines carved on natural mediums such as wood, stone, or bone, these individuals devised a method of comprehending the past, making sense of the present, and interpreting the future using the runes as guides. The significance of each symbol was a product of its general orientation once cast and its location with respect to other runes. In the present, runes can play the same role in our lives that they played in the chronicles of distant history. Through them, we open ourselves to a form of universal guidance that helps us help ourselves.
There are many casting styles, each of which serves an individual function. Casting a single rune can help you answer specific questions or choose a daily meditation subject. Three runes, cast during confusing or distressing situations, provide you with insights into the past, present, and future—as represented by the first, second, and third runes cast, respectively. A nine-rune cast can help you understand where you are on your spiritual path. The runes that land face up relate to your current circumstances and the events leading up to them, and any runes touching are read as concurrences. Rune readings, however, are by their very nature subjective and open to interpretation. Your casting style should reflect your intuitive knowledge of your needs. Grabbing a handful of runes to cast at random can be just as effective as choosing a set number to cast.
Whether you buy your runes or carve them yourself is less important than your sincere desire to understand the messages conveyed to you via this alphabet of enlightenment. Your intentions will have a direct impact on the wisdom you receive while casting. The runes are representative of forces outside of the realm of human understanding, so your intent will act as your anchor. By simply reading the runes, you will find illumination in the unlimited possibilities laid out before you in each new cast
The Daily OM
Deadman’s Day, Feast of St. Edmund
Edmund, like William Rufus, reigns among those who have been herald as divine victims—the king slain for the love of the land and his people. Edmund was the king of East Angles in 865. In 869, he was captured by the Vikings, who offered to spare his life were he to share his kingdom with their leader, Ingvarr the Bonless. Edmund refused to relinquish any of his land or people to the heathen leader. Thus, Edmund was tied to a tree and used for target practice for the Danish archers, after which he was beheaded. Following his ritualistic death, his head was thrown into a thicket. When his followers happened upon it they found a grey wolf guarding the head. His tomb, in the holy city of Saint Edmundsbury, has been the site of many miracles, and it was upon his bones that the barons swore their oath that led to the Magna Carter—the beginning of human rights in England.
Laguz is the most strongly feminine of runes, representing water. Deep sexuality is suggested by this rune. Through Laguz, water is seen as the ocean – vast, uncontrollable, ever-changing, and vital. When interpreted as the returning tide, Laguz can also predict the inevitable return from a long journey.
Stone Runes are most commonly used for questions about the natural world and things beyond human control. Wunjo is the rune of Joy. Since joy is least frequently a solitary emotion, this rune often represents mutual or communal bliss. Wunjo is also seen as a rune of the gods and a rune of perfection, carrying with it the elation that blazes from the creation of a perfect work – perhaps this is the true joy of the gods, that they can create perfection. That aside, this rune does not focus on the struggle for perfection or on our inevitable imperfections, but rather on a job well done and the satisfaction that comes from it.
Algiz can be easily recognized as the antlers of the elk that it represents. The elk can represent victory, but is much more appropriately associated with the thrill of the hunt itself. This rune therefore can portend vigor and success in active endeavors. Also, this rune seems symbolic of a hand with outstretched fingers – a protective hand. This hand may suggest that you will be shielded from things negative – the problems still exist, you are spared the brunt of their force.
Ice Runes are most commonly used for questions about struggle, conflict, and achievement. Ger is one of the runes that touches on the cycles of the year, in this case the fall harvest. These cycles are eternal, which is represented in the rune by the fact that it is unchanged by reversal. Ger can represent pregnancy or other forms of fruitfulness, and is especially indicative of the cycles of providence and karma – that which has been sown is now being reaped. This rune can also represent the cycles of wealth, for crops were frequently a sign of wealth.
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