For the week of 17 April 2022


Mannaz is the half-month rune through 29 April. Isa is the intuitive rune, Perthro indicates Sabotage message to us, and wheel occupies summer. Read right to left is Mannaz, Isa, then Perthro.

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What's a Runic Calendar?

The Elder Futhark runic calendar I work with is based on the work of Nigel Pennick. It has the potential to provide humanity keys for how we live in season with All Things. Through #theweeklyrune I share the Futhark’s insight on how to live better as animists, to make better choices based on keen insight into the present, and to help each of us be more active in creating a better life for us all. That realization includes living with All Things as family, learning to tend what can’t just be fixed, and using every tool at our disposal to do so. The runes are such a tool, and in the Old Norse tradition, this process is wyrdweaving at it deepest potential. The runes provide one way that we can create ourselves as fit elders, so that upon our good death, we can be well Ancestors.

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, each half-month rune is one of the 24 runes of the Elder Futhark, and governs for a tad over two weeks (14 and 1/4 days, or a fortnight).

Why Join Patreon?

This is the free version of The Weekly Rune.  Get the full benefit of the  ad-free, detailed version every Sunday, by joining my private runes community at Patreon. The paid runecast includes:

  • more detail 
  • ad-free
  • audio blog, with galdr of the runecast and instruction on how to use each sound
  • the current runes’ impact on human life force 
  • insights on how to best manage the curves and twists therein
  • introspective prompts to nuance and tend self-work

Other Patreon offerings:

  • live video classes
  • runic insights,  book excerpts, release newsfree classes
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How is the Runecast Done?

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 have been Nature, Earth, Creation, though are sometimes others. I note who’s speaking each week, as it is revealed.

New to Runecasting?

  • 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.
  • 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.

The Runecast

Progression through the third aett isn’t for the faint of heart. By the time we reach it in seasonal progression, the demands only increase and the rewards are in the eye of the beholder. Folx refer to this aett as the one of the sage, which in my vernacular is less about mysticism and more about eldering well. Or maybe those are one and the same.

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?

We’ve sat with the grief of Tiwaz, the refinement of Berkana, the valuing required of Ehwaz, and now we come to the mindfulness of Mannaz. This rune indicates human, which can be as simple as the form that we are here, and as complex as the charge of being custodian to a plane of existence upon which we depend. When we look at it that way, Mannaz encompasses not just being the human and engaging with the world around us at a high mental level, it means understanding our place in it, being okay with that, and acting from that realization. If we summarize all of that, Mannaz means to mature. And maturity in an animistic sense indicates not just knowing our place in the grander scheme, but doing what it entails.

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When we talk about maturity as animists, it’s not as simple as the human biological trajectory, the emotional deepening, or realizing we are souls in form. It’s all of that plus coming into awareness of our unique gift to bear, while situating into community in a strong way that gives back. And even giving back is likely more specific for each of us, based on our gift. In Old Norse culture, being part of community meant doing our unique job–literally the chore that allowed us to support the community, but also bearing our calling. There wasn’t a choice; it had to be done not because a deity decreed it or the community did, but because our own longing did. We each are the only ones who can do what we do here. The implication of that is, when we don’t do what we’re meant to do here, we feel disempowered, the community misses some vital resource, and a troubled dynamic for all results.

Such is the wisdom of Mannaz. Yes, it means human. Yes, it refers to the mental human function. When you put those together what’s indicated is our ability to manifest, and when we sit deeply with manifestation, the core alchemy of that is our calling. In order to succeed with that equation, we have to have been given the opportunity for that maturity to happen. We have to have had elders, though more likely it was experiences, that inform us of the parameters of what the rules are here and how we have to compose our ourselves to succeed in them. And what is success? Managing the system(s) the best we can. Managing our personal pasts and family dynamics the best we can. Somewhere in all of that finding a way to feed ourselves and do what we came here to do. Success is soul maturity. It is the human, fully ripened, bearing what it brings.

Isa as the best way to engage Mannaz says don’t rush. We don’t leap to maturity, even if we recognize it for what it is, want it, and are ready to do what it requires. It’s still a process. There are things we can’t access until we’ve completed something else first. Some life forces that can move us to the next place aren’t even on the planet yet. A particular relationship hasn’t happened. A system hasn’t birthed. All of these things come of readiness, and the ability to recognize readiness requires… maturity. 

It will come. It is coming. It has come in many ways. At this nearing midpoint of the third aett, we are being asked to be thorough without overdoing, to be still but not paralyzed. Isa is the rune of ring not pass. We can’t move out of the circle we’re in and advance to the one beyond, until we’ve gotten everything we need from the current one.

That plus maturity.

Perthro has been in a lot these runecasts the last few months, which points to the uncharted territory of it all. Is this a level of personal maturity we’ve not reached until now? Collective? In truth, it’s both, and they are dependent on each other. No matter what there’s always risk. In fact, the second we took our first breath here, felt the elements pressing against our skin–we took a risk. 

I can’t speak for anyone else on this, though I want to be sure to say I’ve spent my life risk-averse, which is akin to being air-averse. When we came here we all agreed to risk. Maybe the unification of soul in form can’t be any other way, because the biggest risk we take is that the soul leaves the form. It’s a fundamental part of being on this planet. So if the soul leaving the form is always on the table–and it is–our duty within that is continuously fortifying the experience of being here, the relationships. We really can’t do any of that without taking risk, because risk is what propels us forward in our calling.

Risk is happening whether we invite or or just go our course. The distinguishing factor between living in fear of risk or walking with it is relationship, always. When we can be in intentional relationship with risk we can acknowledge its presence and still stay focused on doing our own job here. Both of those things can coexist. Maybe they have to. They are being risk-secure.

This combination of runes is stating very clearly that we are ready for risk. We really have done the maturing, and even if we still have room to go (which we do) we’ve mastered how to be in form up to this point. Those skills are good. The resources we’ve gained are valid. They will be part of the Isa that get us to the next part of maturity.

Even Sabotage brings an interesting message. In summer it’s optimistic. It indicates a time of coming into power. In its earliest use, sabotage derived from sabot, the etymology of which was a combination of shoe and boot (wooden clogs), worn by peasant workers. The evolution of sabotage came from those workers lodging disputes with their employment and finding ways to disrupt production. In that use, it comes from a spirit of rebellion, not just mean destruction, as we use it today. 

With the Wheel as a presence in this cast, the implication is that all things in season–even sabotage. Even risk. Even growth. Even maturity.


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Half-month Rune Prompts

  • Where is sacred Sabotage needed in your life?
  • What risk are you willing to take to bear your unique gift to the planet?
  • What stillness can you allow for movement to happen?


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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.’ Practice galdring different ways, and go with the way that you feel in your body.

  • Mannaz – Mah, Mahn, Mahna
  • Isa – Ees, Eesuh
  • Perthro – Pair, Pairth, Per, Perth


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Originally published on Soul Intent Arts.

S. Kelley Harrell, M. Div.

I’m an animist, author, deathwalker and death doula. 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 Runic Book of Days, and 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.

#beyourcommunity ~ #youareecosystem

elder well, die well, ancestor well


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Elder Well

To bear your unique gift to the world.

Die Well

To leave the planet better than you found it.

Ancestor Well

So that your descendants never elder alone.