For the week of 30 December 2018

Eldering in the dark

Eihwaz is the half-month stave through 13 January. Ingwaz is the intuitive stave, and Wunjo reversed indicates Creation’s message to us. Read right to left is Eihwaz, Ingwaz, then Wunjo reversed.

I truly believe that #theweeklyrune includes the keys to making better choices based on keen insight into the present, to help each of us be more active in creating a better reality for us all. That realization process includes learning to tend what can’t just be fixed, and using every tool at our disposal to accomplish that. The runes are such a tool, and in the Old Norse tradition, this process is wyrdweaving at it deepest potential.

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What’s a half-month rune?

“Half-month” is an astronomical concept in which each month is divided into two parts: days 1-15, then 16-month’s end. In terms of the runic calendar, the half-month rune is based on the Elder Futhark, and governs for a tad over two weeks (14 and 1/4 days, or a fortnight).

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The Weekly Rune is a three-rune cast. Those runes are the half-month, the intuitive rune, and the overview. The half-month is a set rune, which for the most part follows the traditional ordering of the Elder Futhark. The intuitive stave (meaning, I draw it blind) indicates the life force most available to us, to the focus of the half-month rune into sharper focus. It suggests how we can best handle the half-month energies. The final rune (also drawn blind) provides a high overview of the current time, and speaks from different voices. These voices are usually Nature, Earth, Creation, though are sometimes others. I note who’s speaking each week, as it is revealed.

New to The Weekly Rune?

  • Catch a couple of my IGTV videos, which explain the intention and process behind the runecast, and what makes it different from other ways of casting.
  • Listen to my What in the Wyrd podcast, which is available across all popular podcast platforms, including Google Play and  iTunes. The latest episode discusses the nuances of Raidho.
  • A few people have asked the reason that I switch between different rune sets for TWR. The short answer is: because. The more nuanced answer is I ask which sets wants to speak each week. I don’t assume the same elements are in play according to the timing of the runes; I also don’t assume the same elements of my runes are appropriate to speak each week. I did a podcast on this subject, so there’s more info there. (See above)
  • Also, for deep work on coming into relationship with the runes in season, check out my book, Runic Book of Days.

Runic Book of Days - A Guide to Living the Annual Cycle of Rune Magick by S. Kelley Harrell

The Runecast

This side of Winter Solstice (in the north) puts the last few months into perspective. The winter runes that open the second aett bring a lot of work. They are under sung in their intensity, though I find them to be the most internally grueling of the Futhark. We transition from them into a state of planning with Jera, which delivers us to the point of choice.

Information-gathering is finished. How we must do something with it.

Learn more about this seasonal progression, and how to draw its insights into the personal spiritual path in Runic Book of Days.

What does it mean?

Eihwaz is a curious rune. As the 13th rune in the Elder Futhark, it is the half-way point through the progression. It should come as no surprise that it is a bit of an enigma, given that pivotal placement. It indicates death by the interpretation of many, though it’s more like an endpoint that requires input.  A visual that I find useful for Eihwaz is walking down a narrow passage, so narrow that turning around isn’t possible. Yet the path ahead is obscured by a corner. What lies beyond the corner can’t be seen. With the inability to turn around, the only choice is to go forward. With that limitation, Eihwaz signifies a leap of faith.

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The emphatic part of a leap of faith is the not knowing part, yes? That’s the scary and dramatized part of Eihwaz. Yet if we examine it in the seasonal context, in the narrative of the Elder progression, Eihwaz comes after the intense personal work of winter. It comes after realizing we need skills (Hagalaz-Nauthiz), doing the needs assessment to get those skills (Isa), planning how we can rise to the occasion (Jera), then the point that we have to put it all into action: now.

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Ingwaz tells us how to best work with Eihwaz, and it brings great complement to where we go from here. Meaning, “the people of Ing,” this rune brings an aspect of community that is the complete story of duty, eldering, and finding the Communal Self. As it’s one of the third aett runes, we’re not quite there in the seasonal progression–so I’ll save the full story for when it’s more timely (or, spoiler alert: look up last year’s time with Ingwaz in TWR archive). Suffice it to say that Ingwaz represents the completion of a long cycle of growth, intentional maturation, and well-time arrival into the community. In fact, the story of Ingwaz hints that we can’t reach our full potential in calling and showing up without achieving all of those steps. Ingwaz is about how our actions now affect our descendants, and we are required to act accordingly.

Listen to the Runecast Galdr

The voice of Creation speaks to us about disappointment, this week. Wunjo reversed seems like the opposite of joy: sadness. Makes sense, right? Yet the opposite of joy is fraught with more than sadness. It comes with guilt, shame, blame, anger. And if we really sit with the full scope of Wunjo as the culmination of having created ourselves as our best soul in form (the challenges of the first aett), we realize the deep self-responsibility that leads up to joy. It’s another micro story of wyrdweaving within the Elder runes. When Wunjo goes pear-shaped, we take it very personally.

And of course the memo there is fine tuning a continual state of depersonalizing life force.

Ouch. On so many levels, yes? It’s a good reminder, though, in this time of turning blind corners and realizing we’re still responsible to community for our personal growth. The outcome isn’t ours. We’re still responsible for tending it. We’re still responsible to keep showing up. Ultimately, the outcome is its own life force, and we are merely its custodians. At deepest we love without strings, and at best we tend, always.

For suggestions on how to do that gracefully, subscribe to my private runes community on Patreon.

Half-month Rune Prompts

  • What skills enable you to adapt well?
  • How well do you cope with openness?
  • How do you tend your ensouledness?


The way that I use galdr is through chanting. I find repetition of the base phonetic helps me feel the rune. Remember that the Elder Futhark isn’t a language. It was originally an alphabet, incorporated into mythical origin. It functions phonetically, both in spelling and pronunciation. Given that, galdr isn’t terribly different from the overall pronunciation, and the emphasis is on the intention of the chant, not so much the pronunciation.
My personal emphasis in galdr is on the vowels initially and I incorporate the consonants later. For instance, with Ansuz, I focus on ‘ahw-oo,’ before incorporating the middle ‘n,’ such as ‘ahwnsoo.’ There is no right or wrong with galdr (although I guess there could be a flat-out wrong?), though often the final consonants aren’t pronounced, as in ‘ahwsoo.’
  • Jera – Yair, Yairuh
  • Uruz – Ur
  • Hagalaz – Hah
Originally published on Soul Intent Arts.