For the week of 24 April 2022

The Slow Becoming

Mannaz is the half-month rune through 29 April. Thurisaz is the intuitive rune, Kenaz reversed indicates Vacancy’s message to us, the Mink Femur occupies autumn, and Stone is the active element. Read right to left is Mannaz, Thurisaz, then Kenaz reversed.

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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).

How is the Runecast Done?

The Weekly Rune is a (mostly) three-rune cast. Those runes are the half-month, the intuitive rune, and the sacred overview. The half-month is a set rune, which for the most part follows the traditional ordering of the Elder Futhark. However, in the calendric ordering observed by Pennick, the order is slightly different. The intuitive stave (meaning, I draw it blind) indicates the life force most available to us, and 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 sacred voices. These voices have been Nature, Earth, Creation, though are sometimes others. I note who’s speaking each week, as it is revealed.

As the runecast has evolved its voice, other components have been added. Osteomancy, the elements, and directions were gradually added in to more deeply root the spirits of place into the cast, each bringing a nuance of how to work with the half-month rune, or how to engage forces of the season on a more personal level for the reader.

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.

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 for felt sense resonance
  • 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:

  • Community connection via ​Discord
  • live video classes
  • runic insights,  book excerpts, release newsfree classes
  • optional services with me
  • discounts on soul tending services

The Runecast

When we sit with what it means to mature as an animistic human, we’re confronted with… everything. Everything we’ve ever done, said, thought, intended. Every hurt we caused or endured, all lineage wounds that stretch up at the tips of our toes become part of what we do here. One of the things that makes adolescence so hard is that we are no longer unconscious to the world around us. The same could be said of the third aett.

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?

By the time we reach Mannaz in the Futhark progression, we’ve had it reinforced several times that life happens. We’re either working with intention from our own relationship to what that means, or we’re hating life. Or both, really. Because that’s the deal–it’s not all up to us, or even about us. We just move among the best we can. This week’s cast touches on variables around that movement, and how we can even use our less stable moments to our advantage.

To continue reading:

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Thurisaz is in an interesting position this week. As the thorn, the thing that prods action or movement, this rune is always provocative. When interpreted as succeeding Uruz, there’s an implication that if the self-awareness of Uruz isn’t done well, the thorn stands to do more damage. Assuming self-awareness, Thurisaz entails that we are in step with ourselves internally, which means we are able to express a healthy unconscious, and are in step with what may come. With our awareness on that fact is the best way we can move among right now.

It goes without saying that no one is completely self-aware, or at least not all the time. We will always have shadow parts to tend, as we are still soul-in-form, in dynamics we can’t control, with the systems that don’t have our best interests in mind. What that means is there’s always new territory to cover in our unconscious. We could spend the rest of our lives focused on nothing but working on our unconscious, and probably lose our minds doing so. Thurisaz isn’t suggesting that we be hyper aware of how we mature and apply our maturity with Mannaz. Rather, it’s just reminding us to make our unconscious part of the process. Refer back to it, and when necessary allow it to express its berserker-like fire to life dynamics that may need burning down. It’s a slippery slope, Thurisaz. It’s an explosive rune in challenging contexts, though in supportive ones, it can generate needed change. This week that change will be what facilitates our maturity, and we can trust our unconscious to prompt what needs to be addressed.

Kenaz reversed through the voice of Vacancy is curious. I don’t encounter this reversal often, and I can probably count on one hand the number of times in my entire life that I’ve typed the word ‘vacancy,’ let alone said it. The word originates from the Proto-European euə-, (“weh”) and entered Old Norse as vanta, which meant to lack–as in leave alone, to be empty. Kenaz, brightstave, is internalized as an Aha! Moment, something that has been liminal becomes evident, if not manifest. Reversed, this rune expresses hovering awareness, something so close it’s discernible, though not close enough to be evident. It’s that brain-burning space when we’re so close to figuring something out, or moving into a new life phase, but no matter how much we know it deep down, how much we feel it to be true, it’s just not coming into being yet. Sounds awesome, huh?

Golden husky helping lay out The Weekly Rune spread on the coffee tableHere’s the thing: Vacancy that is speaking through Kenaz reversed is sacred. It’s urging us to let that itching, simmering something be–as it is. Just let it be. Don’t force it into being, don’t run screaming the other way. Don’t fret Self into an anxious puddle because nothing appears to be moving. It’s all moving, regardless of evidence. See it for what it is in as much awareness as possible, and just—–vacate. Leave it alone. Don’t do anything until it’s time to do the thing that’s evident.

The Mink Femur expresses how we carry ourselves at this time. As always with Mink, it’s about what we hear and observe, not what we say or do. That this state is described through the bone suggests that this is how we move through the week. We don’t push ourselves boldly ahead or make our voices loud. We also aren’t hidden in a way that our power is less or uninvolved. Rather, we walk quietly along the edges, listening, internalizing what’s needed to know how we grow, and we keep on moving, growing with each step.

Stone as the element in residence for our first more elaborate runecast also offers slowness, steadfastness, timelessness. It can’t not be embodied. There’s no rushing stone, in either its formation or its degradation. Both processes only shift it from one form to another. It still remains. What’s significant with Stone is that it is resonant. It’s not just sitting there doing nothing. It picks up on vibrations, is shaped by other elements, flavored by various minerals. It adjusts to suit the environment, albeit on its own terms and timing.

We can do that, too. We don’t have the longevity in form that stone has, but we can work with it as an ally to help us be more comfortable with determining our own way of weathering, embodying. Through autumn we have what we need-the fruit of our growth and work–to carry us to this nebulous Next. And that is ultimately the message of the runecast this week: maturity takes time, and rarely if ever is that fact comfortable. Two of our runes reach back to our most basic skills of unconscious motivation and letting what comes of that evolve. Work the Dream Team to help facilitate what’s needed to be able to sit with what is, and to hold space for who Self is becoming.


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Half-month Rune Prompts

  • How comfortable are you with stillness?
  • How do you manage the tension between knowing something better is coming, yet being unable to make it arrive?
  • How do you manage the tension of feeling unsettled in your unconscious, yet not knowing how to address its needs?


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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
  • Thurisaz – Thoor, Thooree
  • Kenaz – Kehn, Kenuh, Kawn, Kawnuh, Kain, Kainuh


Runes for Change community, Soul Intent Arts, Kelley Harrell

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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.