RUNES

I OVERVIEW
II HISTORY
III DESCRIPTIONS & MEANINGS

A. Mannaz B. Gebo C. Ansuz D. Othila
E. Uruz F. Perth G. Nauthiz H. Inguz
I. Eihwaz J. Algiz K. Fehu L. Wunjo
M. Jera N. Kano O. Teiwaz P. Berkana
Q. Ehwaz R. Laguz S. Hagalaz T. Raido
U. Thurisaz V. Dagaz W. Isa X. Sowelu
Y. Odin

IV. Layouts used for divination

A. Odin\'s Rune
B. Three Rune Spread
C. Runic Cross
D. Three Life Spread

I. Overview
Runes are a method of divination similar to the Tarot or the I Ching. The dif
ference is that Runes are a set of 25 stones instead of 78 cards or a set of
sticks with patterns. As with the Tarot, most of the Runes may be rightside
up, or up side down, the meaning differing with the case. There are also some
Runes that can not appear up side down. In practice, the Runes may be made
of any material; ceramic, stones, sticks, or drawn on cards. (If anyone
followsthese directions, and begins to use Runes, please leave me a message
on this BBS as to your success/failure.)

II. History

Before the Germanic peoples of ancient Western Europe possessed a true
alpha bet, they used pictorial symbols to carve into stones their ideas
and thoughts. The earliest of these pictorial writings date from about
1300 B.C.E..They were probably linked to Sun and Fertility cults. Among the
signs were parts of the human body, weapons, animals and variations on
the circle, square, and swastika. These pictoglyphs later evolved into the
more abstract glyphs that were composed of lines resembling no particular
objects. That there was power endowed to those who were adept at the use
of these glyphs is indicated by the name given to the glyphs
themselves. These glyphs were called Runes, from the Gothic Runa, meaning
\'a secret thing, a mystery.\' The Runic letter or Runastafr was use to
foretell the future by Runemal, or thecasting of the Runes. The Runes were
inscribed into tools, weapons, rocks, alters, and other personal items.
Runes were also used by the clergy as an alternative to the Latin alphabet.
It is believed that Runes were derived from a northern Etruscan alphabet
used among Italic tribes in the Eastern Alps.They may have been developed
by people living in the area of Bohemia.

From the beginning Runes were used for the casting of lots, for divination
and to evoke higher powers that might influence the \'luck\' of man. There
were Runes that influenced the weather, the harvest, curses, the tides, love,
and healing.

The Practicianer of Runemal was easily recognizable by the very clothing
they wore. As the 13th century author of the \'Saga of Erik the Red\' said,
"She wore a cloak set with stones along the hem. Around her neck and
covering her head she wore a hood lined with white catskins. In one hand
she carried a staff with a knob on the end and her belt, holding together
her long dress, hung a charm pouch." As you can also see from this passage,
many of the Rune Masters were women. As time wore on, the Runes themselves
became standardized through out Europe. Although in some places the Runes
numbered as many as 36 oras few as 16. Twenty-four of these were the basic
Runes, or futhark. The name futhark comes from the first 6 Runes. There were
3 families of 8 Runes each, named after the Norse Gods Freyr, Hagal and Tyr.
These three aettir, as they were called, were:

Freyr\'s Eight: Fehu, Uruz, Thurisaz, Ansuz, Raido,Kano, Gebo, Wunjo;

Hagal\'s Eight: Hagalaz, Nauthiz, Isa, Jera, Eihwaz, Perth, Algiz, Sowelu;

Tyr\'s Eight: Teiwaz, Berkana, Ehwaz, Mannaz, Laguz, Inguz, Othila, Dagaz.

The Anglo-Saxons are credited with spreading Runes and Runecraft through out
Europe. It is unfortunate that more than 300 years ago the last of the Rune
Masters died taking with them the true art of Rune casting.

In recent years people such as Ralph Blum have tired to revive the ancient
art of Rune Casting through books, casting Runes, and through research into
ancient books and manuscripts for references to Runes.

III Descriptions and Meanings

A. Mannaz: Two vertical lines with a horizontal \'X\' connecting
the top of the two lines so that it appears like a golf flag and
its mirror image. Essence is water. Clarity, willingness
to change is effective now. Become right with yourself,
then you can be right with others. Be yielding, devoted and
moderate. Only then will you have a true direction.
Inverted: If there is blockage now, it comes from within.
Look to yourself, not to others at this time. Stop and
reconsider. The outer enemy