Body's only awareness is perseverance through the moment, not how long the moment has to last. Kelley Harrell Soul Intent Arts

Body-by-the-minute, a rune a day.

A conversation with the body through runes.

Body let me know over the weekend that it missed this runic dialogue. I thought to draw a rune anyway, without catharting in words and just do a catch up post with the missed runes, Monday.  Body was okay with that, but that didn’t feel right elsewhere. Mind wanted to cathart, as the writing fills a need similar to morning pages. So I gave in to overall fatigue and did none of it, but kept coming back to Body’s experience.  Therein lies a huge lesson in soul-in-form: the ability to override Body, though Body doesn’t get to override the experience. And Body can have overlapping experiences at once.

That situates pretty well with the wisdom of Othala. It means the many aspects of a life and death walk done right–transitioning into elderhood, Ancestralizing the dead, the ley of inheritance, everything from death to the transitioning of titles and inheritance, that process, as well as managing estate with Descendants in mind. I think if there’s a rune that represents the business of form, it’s Othala. Where Uruz is attesting the internal organization of being in form, Othala could easily be the external organization of form. How we are left things from those who went before, and how we leave them for those who come after.

Something I learned from my third miscarriage was that to soul, every second is a complete lifetime. The promise of longevity doesn’t factor in at a soul level, and when I’m really honest with all of myself, it doesn’t for Body, either. Othala as insight from Body left me wondering if Body experiences infinite deaths and rebirths every day, if, in its own way, it’s constantly consciously situating itself between life and death, deathwalking cells, deciding which systems get what nourishment first and to what saturation, witnessing the birth of new cells. Its only awareness is perseverance through the moment, not how long the moment has to last. 

Turns out it lasts a lifetime, and Body is the Othala holding the space between. That’s where I turn for guidance today–the moments.


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S. Kelley Harrell, M. Div.

I’m an animist, author, deathwalker and death doula held by Tuscarora, Woccon, and Sissipihaw land. For the last 25+ years, through Soul Intent Arts I’ve helped others to ethically build thriving spiritual paths as fit, embodied elders, who upon death become wise, capable Ancestors. My work is Nature-based, and focuses soul tending through the Elder Futhark runes, animism, ancestral healing, and deathwork. I’m author of several books on soul work and runes, and when moved I host the podcast, What in the Wyrd. I also write The Weekly Rune as a celebration of the Elder Futhark in season. Full bio.

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