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Interpreting the Runes ~ Wunjo ~ Joy ~ Light

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”  — Adapted from the words of Reinhold Niebuhr

Wunjo is considered to be a positive rune and when drawn in the upright position will always represent joy and happiness coming into life. It is an excellent omen in a reading. A shift, that was due, has occurred and the blessings associated with Wunjo may freely be received and accepted. These blessings may relate to material gain, emotional life, or in a heightened sense of one’s own well-being. Be happy!

In combination with other runes, it indicates success in whatever areas they rule. For example, with travel runes such as Raidho or Ehwaz, it can show a fortunate and generally pleasing journey; with message runes such as Ansuz, it can mean good news; when Wunjo is drawn with love related runes, in can show deep affection and long-lasting emotional happiness.

Often, Wunjo will signify the object of one’s affections. In this case, it usually shows some activity undertaken with this person will end with a happy result.

Wunjo can also represent joy in one’s work, especially if that work is artistic or creative . Like the rune Kenaz, Wunjo appears in readings for people who are artists or craftsmen and shows that this creative element is very important to their personal happiness and wellbeing.

Reversed The meaning of Wunjo reversed is exactly the opposite of everything stated about its meaning in the upright position. Things are slow in coming and the person for whom the runes are being consulted may be undergoing a difficult, if not crisis time, filled with misery and unhappiness.

The runes drawn in addition to Wunjo should show the specific problem areas. Drawn with Raidho or Ehwaz, an unsafe or unsuccessful trip with breakdowns and delays are indicated and are likely.

If the question being asked relates to one’s employment, Wunjo reversed warns of dissatisfaction, either with the job itself or with one’s job performance.

In matters of love, this rune shows disappointment or a delay of some type in a present relationship, the intensity of which can be discerned from the other runes drawn.

In all questions about business, travel or love, Wunjo reversed shows a need for caution, perhaps even putting off an important decision until a seemingly better time.

The rune of Wunjo can also show trouble caused by a third-party in the form of friction and delays. One should be on the lookout for any possible double-dealing on the part of acquaintances, friends, business associates or opponents.


Interpreting the Runes ~ Jera~Harvest

Jera is considered to be a neutral rune.  Its neutrality is conveyed by its design. It is almost a wheel and looks no different however it may fall in a rune reading. The surrounding runes hint at the outcome.  Its meaning is also closely linked to the wheel, just as it is concerned with cycles. The word “harvest” suggests a positive outcome to most, however there are in truth all kinds of harvest: bumper crops displayed at Thanksgiving time to the life sentence handed down to a murderer.

The appearance of Jera in a reading implies a time of reckoning, when things have perhaps gone full cycle and must now demand review. In many instances, this rune of Jera signifies legal matters, the general way of “reckoning” in our culture. Since this rune indicates one’s “just desserts,” justice is likely to be involved in some way. As Jera also governs every kind of contract, there could be a chance of some form of business deal or even a marriage.

On another level, this rune can represent disturbing forces at work, represented as it is by two interlocking forces whirling around each other. It is an indication of inner turmoil, of one being almost torn apart by opposing emotions, and yet still managing to keep them contained .The turmoil approaches resolution, but while this may produce a certain peace, some loss is also involved.  Once again, the runes counsel us that nothing comes for free.

Interpreting the Runes ~ Is ~ Ice

Does this rune seem rather forbidding? Ice is obviously very cold and can even, in some instances be dangerous. That does not tell the entire story however.  Ice may be considered protective.  We have all heard the phrase, “put it on ice” ensuring fresh storage for later use.  This rune counsels caution: the best course of action is simply, no action.  This is the moment to stop and freeze all plans, for to continue would be fool hardy – just like stepping on, thin ice!

The rune Is indicates things have gone on far too long and with too much coldness for there to be any chance of the return of any warmth.  Sometimes the appearance of this rune heralds the destruction of plans by sly and hidden hands: ice is easy to see once it has formed but only rarely does one have a chance to see it develop, and it is strong enough to break nearly everything in its path.  The appearance of Is in any reading should always be considered a serious warning. In personal relationships, this rune does not bid well for the future.  Once ice has penetrated into the heart and soul of loved ones there is little chance that matters will work out well.

This rune has no reverse; the same shape whichever way it falls.  This indicates putting plans on hold and waiting until the situation changes.  Eventually, there will be a thaw and again everything will go back to what seemed normal.

Interpreting the Runes ~ Dagaz ~ Breakthrough ~ Transformation ~ Day

Dagaz

dagaz

Breakthrough

Transformation

Day

Dagaz is the last Rune belonging to the Cycle of Initiation.  Drawing Dagaz often signals a major shift or breakthrough in the process of self-change, a complete transformation in attitude, a 180-degree turn.  For some, the transition is so radical that they are no longer able to live the ordinary life in the ordinary way.

Because the timing is right, the outcome is assured although not, from the present vantage point, predictable.  In each life there comes at least one moment which, if recognized and seized, transforms the course of that life forever.  Rely, therefore on radical trust, even though the moment may call for one’s self to leap empty-handed into the void.  With this Rune the Warrior Nature reveals itself.

If Dagaz is followed by the Blank Rune, the magnitude of the transformation might be so great as to portend a death, the successful conclusion of one’s passage.

Interpreting the Runes ~ Ansuz ~ Signals ~ Messenger Rune Gift

Ansuz

Ansuz~ Ansur~ Mouth

Ansuz~ Ansur~ Mouth

Signals

Messenger Rune

The God Loki

The keynote here is receiving: messages, signals, gifts.  Even a most timely warning may be seen as a gift.  The message may be that of a new life unfolding.  New lives begin with new connections, surprising linkages that direct you to new pathways. Take care now to be especially aware during meetings, visits, chance encounters, particularly with persons wiser than yourself.  When the Messenger Rune brings sacred knowledge, you are truly blessed.

Loki is that ancient trickster from the pantheon of the Norse Gods.  He is theheyeohkah of the Native Americans, a mocking shadow of the creator god, as well as the bringer of benefits to humankind. He is a reminder that even scoundrels and arch-thieves can be the bearers of wisdom.  When this Rune is drawn, expect the unexpected; the message is always a call, a call to a new life.

Ansuz is the first of the thirteen Runes that make up the Cycle of Initiation -Runes that focus directly upon the mechanism of self-change – and as such, addresses our need to integrate unconscious motive with conscious intent.

Drawing Ansuz indicates that a connection with the Divine is at hand.  It is a signal to explore the depths, the foundations of life, and to experience the inexhaustible wellspring of the Divine in one’s own nature.

At the same time, Ansuz reminds that one must first draw from the well to nourish and give to oneself.  Then, there will be more than enough to nourish others.  A new sense of family solidarity invests this Rune.

Ansuz also presents a different message when drawn in a reversed position: One may be concerned over what appears to be failed communication, lack of clarity or awareness either in one’s past history or in a present situation.  One may feel inhibited from accepting what is offered.  A sense of futility, of wasted motion, may overwhelm one’s self.  However, that is what is happening and is timely to one’s own process.  If the well is clogged, this is the moment for cleaning out the old.  Reversed, Ansuz is saying, “Consider the uses of adversity.”

Interpreting the Runes ~ Geofu ~ Gebo ~ Gift

Geofu ~ Gebo ~ Gift

“We’re like that!” is what we say when we are trying to communicate how close we are to another, and by crossing our fingers together.  A union, signified by the cross has been used as a representation since ancient times and implies complete harmony.  Gebo is associated with the planet Venus, the goddess of love.  Whenever this rune is drawn for the person being read, know without a doubt that the person is bringing a matter of the heart.  Gebo is a benevolent influence; however the surrounding runes show more and may even show difficulties in relationships.  When this rune is drawn, the person for whom the reading is occurring is, or will soon be in a general state of relaxation and peace with themselves and the rest of the world.

At one’s innermost level the appearance of Gebo may be issuing a form of warning that some gift – be it money, love or wisdom – is likely to come to the person being read.  We all know that nothing in life comes for free and without some sort of cost.  All gifts imply that equality must be attained; one must give back, equal in value to such a gift, either in this lifetime or the next.  There’s always a price to pay.  In a manner of speaking, this rune speaks to the innumerable laws of karma – “As you sow, so shall ye reap.”

As a result, I recommend that one doesn’t consider the appearance of this rune to be entirely positive.  The outcome may prove to be productive, but not, necessarily positive.  Ignore one’s inherent responsibilities and the outcome could be perilous.

Interpreting the Runes ~ Ken ~ Kenaz ~ Torch

Kenaz

On the surface, this rune pertains to gifts. Kenaz is associated with Mars and the spring equinox, when the arrival of new life, rebirth and renewal was traditionally celebrated by people of ancient times. One can make the leap then that Kenaz symbolizes fertility and can portend the arrival of a baby or child.

Kenaz is a masculine gendered rune and relates to the dominant person in the situation for which the reading is occurring. If the person being read is asking about business, then Kenaz implies that the dominant person will be calling the shots or making the offers. If the dominant person is the one being read, the rune cast will show whether the offer should be accepted.

The same applies to personal relationships, as Kenaz signals that the dominant person in the relationship will be soon offering a gift. Any surrounding runes in the casting show the motive behind the gift and whether it should be accepted or not.

The torch aspect of Kenaz represents knowledge and spiritual enlightenment to “light the way.” One may be required to use their own inner knowledge to help light the way for someone less fortunate than themselves.

Kenaz Reversed

Kenaz signifies loss when drawn reversed. A potentially rewarding business deal will fall apart. If it is a child one is hoping for, Kenaz reversed signals they are false hopes, false alarms, and infertility. Kenaz may also signal the loss of an employment situation or relationship. Never fear however. Kenaz isn’t just about gloom and doom. The loss shall be only temporary or altered by the surrounding runes on the field, indicating any loss could be temporary.

Interpreting the Runes ~ Rad ~ Raido ~ Raidho ~ Cartwheel

Rad ~ Raidho ~ Cartwheel ~ The Wheel

Rad ~ Raidho ~ Cartwheel ~ The Wheel

Raidho

One will always find when reading the runes, that none of them is one-dimensional; especially Raidho.  This rune, like Ansur, is also connected with the planet Mercury and is thus associated with communication. The communication associated with Raidho is especially directed toward travel. This rune causes an opposition between the ideas of travel and communication. Travel may be interpreted quite literally with this rune showing that for the person for whom we are reading a trip or physical journey may be expected. On the other hand, as travel in the ancient Germanic lands was treacherous and much longer in duration in the extreme, Raidho may be signaling that the person is ready to embark on a journey of personal growth; an inner journey that will bring enlightenment and yield new levels of understanding and knowledge.

Unlike Ansur, which counsels caution, forethought and advice before taking action, Raidho signals a need to move now. The outlook is good, as it is time for the person being read to shirk the “I can’t decide one way or the other” scenario and make a decision. The planet Mercury rules trade and as a result, Raidho can signal that there is some significant form of a business transaction in the near future. Recalling that the central meaning behind the rune Raidho is communication and travel, the person being read could receive some form of message that could skew the entire present situation in a most unexpected way.

Raidho Reversed

When Raidho is drawn in the reversed position, obstacles and delays may be looming related to travel. If the person we are reading is planning a trip of some sort, there are sure to be any number of hindrances in the way of progress. Another sign of Raidho reversed is the message that a need for travel may present itself at a most inappropriate time, leaving one’s home or base, vulnerable. Lastly, this rune also may signal in the reversed position that one may expect a visit from a person that will result in unimaginable inconvenience.

The Five Rune Spread

Overview

1

Challenge

2

Action

3

Sacrifice

4

New Situation

null

5

When consulting the Runes, situations will occasionally arise when one’s “need-to-know” goes beyond the authority of a single stone or the Three Rune Spread. The Five Rune Spread can help to identify the distinctive components of a situation that might otherwise overwhelm with its complexity.


Begin by clearly formulating the issue. Draw five Runes from the bag, one at a time, and place them one below the other. In descending order, the Runes stand for:

  1. Overview of the Situation
  2. Challenge
  3. Course of Action Called for
  4. Sacrifice
  5. New Situation Evolving

The Five Rune Spread is absolutely personal and specific. If five Runes are drawn from the bag and placed down on the field, the odds against drawing this particular spread are 607,614 to 1. If however, a Rune is drawn, written down, returned to the bag making the next selection from a full bag of Runes, the odds against drawing this particular spread are now 312,500,500 to 1.


The fourth position, “Sacrifice” is intended as recognition that life offers choices and options that are often mutually exclusive. The concept of sacrifice has, over time, come to be associated with pain and loss. The application of sacrifice in the Five Rune Spread refers to that which has peeled away, shed or discarded, as is called for in the Rune Othila. Othila portends the emergence of new wholeness. Originally a boding of two Latin words, sacrificium and facere, one of the core meanings of sacrifice is “surrender to God.”


A Sample Reading

From my Rune Journal I will again make reference to the successful business I owned with my ex-partner. I was the creative impulse of the idea, and the slogging hard work of getting the company on its feet. The company was “my baby.” When it came time to allow a competitor to acquire the company, the competitor wanted my participation, but not my partner’s. All my fears regarding loyalty, abandonment, the risk to the long-term relationship with my partner and his self-esteem were brought to the surface by this situation. I decided to do a Five Rune Spread which is the spread used above.


Perth, the Rune of Initiation as the overview of the situation, immediately shifted my focus away from both my relationship with my partner and the business. “Nothing external matters here, except as it shows you its inner reflection” – these words were key for me. I realized this was another crossroad on the path of self-change.


Uruz, the Rune of Strength Reversed, indicated the need to respond consciously to “the demands of such a creative time.” It was clear the correct decision would encourage my growth at all levels – corporate as well as personal.


Wunjo reversed speaks of the process of birth being long and arduous as well as the fears which arise for the safety of the child within. The Runes were reminding me that I was going through a test.


Nauthiz, the Rune of Constraint Reversed, in the Sacrifice position conveyed the great teacher in the guise of pain and limitation. I was able to more clearly see that it was time to take a new kind of responsibility for what I had created, to own and honor it and to do what was right for the company.


Dagaz, the Rune of Breakthrough addressed the New Situation Evolving. This Rune offers the assurance that, “because the timing is right, the outcome is assured, although not, from the present vantage point, predictable.” My partner went on to become a success with his considerable talent with a prescription drug company.

Readings From the Runes

Beautiful bag for beautiful Runes

I begin most days with a reading from the Runes, asking what my course of right action is for the day ahead of me.  Before I draw a Rune from my special sack, I recite to myself “The Prayer of St. Francis.”  If I anticipate a situation before me that could be intense or turbulent, I may meditate or pray for specific strength, wisdom or guidance.  With a clear mind, and a strong will, openness and the intention to know my direction for the day, I then draw one stone.  My Runes are made of rose quartz and I found them in a metaphysical shop in Sedona Arizona.  I feel that because they come from Sedona, which has a special energy from the vortex’s there, my Runes are highly charged.

Like me, there are many who set aside that special time of day to consult the Runes.  Some light candles or incense. It is important to compose one’s self through meditation or a focus on breathing.  It is important to free the mind of all cares and concerns.  To the beginner, even to have the mind cleared for just one moment will be helpful.  The key here is focus and to control one’s mind.  Life happens however; the Runes can be consulted or read without the more formal preparation I’ve described.  One’s need is what brings forth the energy of the Runes.

The consultation of the Runes is referred to as “casting” and is considered “play.”  This however is a very sacred form of play.  I find that a particularly good time to consult the Runes is when one is faced with a decision.  Especially situations one is facing where one’s own resources are exhausted or one possesses little or incomplete information.  For me, the Runes serve as a decision making tool.  Focus the issue clearly in the mind.  Reach into the sack of Runes, making contact with the stones.  Each time I reach my hand into my bag of Runes, some of the stones feel cold while others feel hot.  Intuitively I know, without looking into the bag of course, which Rune is the “right” Rune.  The individual that introduced me to the Runes said to me, “The right Rune always sticks to my fingers.”

When Runes are being cast for someone else, this person should be asked to put together their question or concern in their mind, but not say it out loud.  By keeping the matter to themselves, any unconscious personal bias is removed from the reading.  Rune readings for others don’t have to be face-to-face.  A connection through the Internet or telephone works just as well.  What is required is the individual’s focus on their issue.

Let’s say that one wishes to consult the Runes on behalf of another person, but their permission to do so can’t be obtained.  This is when the Runes should be consulted for “the course of right action.”  The Runes can be asked whether such action is timely or correct.  “Yes” or “No” questions may be asked.  If the Rune is drawn in its upright position the response is “yes”.  The reversed position indicates “no.”  Nine of the Runes have no upright or reversed position.  When I consult the Runes regarding an issue that requires a “yes” or “no” response and I draw a Rune that has no reversed position, I continue drawing Runes until I reach one that does.

I have made reference a number of times to “the course of right action.”  This form of request is very appropriate for the Runes.  I have consulted the Runes for myself and many others regarding issues such as career moves, real estate sales, investment opportunities, business dealings, relationships and much more.  My preference is to use the word “issue” as opposed to “question” when consulting the Runes for myself or others.  Often, someone will ask, “Should I quit this job?” As an issue, one would say, “The issue is my work.”  It may seem trivial but re-framing a question into an issue is a crucial distinction.  If a question is asked and the Runes provide an answer, the role of the individual facilitating the reading is a passive one.  If an issue is addressed, and the Runes comment on that issue, one is able to extract one’s own answer and determine for one’s self what the course of right action should be.

If there is no specific issue at all in mind, and one still feels drawn to consult the Runes, ask, “What is it that I need to know for my life right now?”  The response from the Runes will always be just what is necessary at that moment.