Four years ago I bought a box of runes at the British Museum in London, and believe it not, I hadn't used them at all. Not sure why I kept them around all this time, maybe it's because they felt magical and I knew that someday I'd be able to connect with that magical energy. When I quit my job two years ago my colleagues gave me an Amazon gift certificate, and one of my pressies was a book by Lisa Peschel, called A Practical Guide to Runes. Again, I had it in my closet but didn't read it, until last week. WOW. The book starts out by telling us how Nordic Runes were used in ancient times, doubling up as an alphabet and an oracle system. Villagers used runes to ask their gods for guidance on practical matters, and they also used the runes to channel their desired intent into the world with a bit of ritual magic. Peschel's book talks us through all of these steps, including how to make your own runes so that unlike me, you don't need to buy them in a museum store LOL.
At first I felt overwhelmed because we don't have many visual clues to trigger our memory. An upright rune can mean different things depending on the runes it's surrounded by, a reversed typically means the opposite. To simplify matters, I created a cheat sheet for myself with one or two key words for each rune. So far I have found the answers to be direct, and the feeling I get from Peschel's book, is that the runes come through when we genuinely need an answer. Based on my experience with them so far, once you get the hang of the keywords, asking a simple question will give you a reliable answer. So for example, last week I was looking at different ways to get my blog out there so that more people will find me. I pulled three runes to ask about an approach that I was considering and the runes that came up were positive and relevant: Othel (financial security), Tir (success) and Daeg (prosperity). I took it to mean that this approach would have tangible success, helping my blog find it's way to people who will genuinely benefit from my insights as a Healer, Angel Intuitive & teacher.
What I like about the runes is how practical they are, giving us no-nonsense advice on love, life, career and any changes we are thinking of making. They are also relatively easy to read on your own - though of course, it always helps to use other tools to boost your intuitive skills, like meditation and journalling. If you would like to learn how to read runes for yourself, I can't recommend Lisa Peschel's book enough. As I mentioned, learning the names and meanings of the runes can be daunting, so please create cheat sheet with the symbols, the names and a few keywords.
Here is my cheat sheet of meanings (the symbols are in the book):
- WYRD - The only blank rune, signals "Let go and let God"
- FEHU - Cattle, earned income, creative firepower.
- URUZ - Wild ox, endurance, willpower.
- THURISAZ - Good luck, protection, divine intervention.
- ANSUZ - Wisdom, communications, dialogue.
- RAIDHO - A journey, travel, a gateway to your soul.
- KENAZ - The floodgates open and clarity ensues.
- GIFU - A gift, partnership, reciprocity.
- WUNJO - Joy, bliss, life is a beach in Belize.
- HAGALL - Disruption, delays, Uranian influence.
- NIED - Patience will come in handy
- ISA - Hibernation, sleep, freeze, winter.
- JERA - Harvest, karma, a seed was planted long ago.
- EIHWAZ - Endurance, rebirth, the end of an era.
- PERDRO - Mysteries, the occult, know yourself.
- EOLH - Fortunate influences, blessings.
- SIGEL - Victory, power.
- TIR - Success in competitions.
- BEORC - New beginnings, birth, family ties.
- EHWAZ - Physical moves, new home, changes.
- MANNAZ - Humanity, interdependence, solidarity.
- LAGAZ - Intuition, downloading information from on high.
- ING - Relief, success, completion.
- DAEG - Prosperity, increase, support.
- OTHEL - Property, possessions, money.
Only after learning these, did I start to turning to the book for in depth answers during practice readings. Eventually, we will learn the meanings of the runes when they are paired with each other, and only after knowing their meanings and energies inside out, should we use them for manifesting desired outcomes. On a side note, before using the runes to manifest, you should start with a reading to ask how it will turn out, as we don't want any unintended side effects. A part of me didn't want to engage with magic because I was scared of what might happen, but then I realized that we are already manifesting unconsciously with our thoughts and our actions, and look at the chaos in the world. If you'd like to explore the magical sciences, I would suggest beginning with self-healing so that you can release any hurts or fears that can influence your "manifestations" and then get to know the laws of cause and effect, etc.