Perthro – chance – I say “chance,” because there’s no solid consensus on exactly what this Rune means. There are a few interpretations along the lines of “luck,” or “karma.” For many Rune enthusiasts Perthro acts as the modern blank Rune, bringing to light the unknown, the unknowable. Given these glimpses of its qualities of risk, control, and time, it’s easy to see how Perthro eludes us still, and to understand it appears this week to bring our attention to the process.
I think that Thorsson describes the mechanations of Perthro well, commenting on the role of the Norns in its interpretation. The Norns are the Norse keepers of fate: Urdhr, what has become; Verdhandi, what is becoming; and Skuld, what should become. They are in essence how we perceive cause and effect in our lives, how we relate to the process as also being the tool by which we accomplish it. The fact that we can examine past actions, plan every little detail, yet still not know how things will turn out–yet be assured that they will turn out some way–is the emphasis here. Perthro’s purpose is to make us question, to offer us the affirmation of control over what is happening in our lives, yet remind us there are also other forces at work, over which we have no control.
In short, this week our mission is to realize that we have as much control as we do not. What is before us now is the change that is always the same. The riddle we constantly mine for meaning and outcome is the truth we are never sure we know.