For the week of 23 April 2023

Personal Truth and Relationship Dysphoria

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Mannaz (porcelain tile) is the half-month rune through 29 April. Kenaz reversed (carved reindeer antler slice) is the intuitive rune, and Jera indicates Network’s message to us. The spirits of place anchoring the runes this week are agatized Clam (Pelecypoda) and element Mycelium in Summer, in the direction of Right (East/Austri). Read right to left is Mannaz, Kenaz reversed, then Jera.

The full runecast will be publicly available here, two weeks from publication. You can find it in full on Patreon, now.

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, situated among spirits of place. Those runes are the half-month, the intuitive rune, and the sacred overview. When the runecast falls at a half-month transition, the fourth rune is included. 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 voices other-than-human, which are non-human concepts and beyond Earth beings. These sacred voices are Allies, and have been Nature, Earth, Continuity, Creation, First Ancestor, Survival, etc. I note who’s speaking each week, as it is revealed.

Spirits of place are represented through osteomancy, season, elements, and directions. Each brings a nuance of how to work with the half-month rune, or how to engage forces of the season on a more personal level in the reader’s geographical and cosmological context. Osteomancy honors other-than-human Helping Spirits on Earth. The elements indicate our best deathwalking/enlivening/tempering force for the time, and the directions offer relationship to place as the best energetic grounding or area where work is needed. These additional beings in the cast give us actionable ways to engage the runes in season and move among with them. Readers should feel free to work with Spirits of Place that most resonate with this runecast, even if they show up differently in their cosmologies and relationships.

This runecast isn’t divinatory in the sense that each half-month rune represents events to occur in its fortnight. Rather, the timing of each rune allows us to greet where we are with what the dynamics each rune represents. It offers a two-week examination of our relationship with the rune.

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

The last week with Mannaz has been friction-filled, and this final week with it is no less so. While this week’s cast comes with its own tension, it also comes with some basic suggestions for rolling with it more smoothly.

Mannaz is the rune of humaning. Ideally we get to do this such that we can bring our truth to our relationships and the act of doing so solidifies the relationship one way or another. It either creates tension in which new relationship structures are intentionally born that better meet needs, there’s absolute agreement and existing relationship structures are intentionally fortified, or we realize the current relationships structures don’t support the truth of anyone involved and there’s intentional agreement to rebuild. Other possibilities are there, but the general outcome is some underscoring of relationship because  personal truth provided the foundation to further fortify the relationship.

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

To access the audio blog recording and continue reading:

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  • If you’re on a device, scroll all the way to the bottom of the page to find the buttons to log into Patreon or become a community member.

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What Does It Mean?

I’m not being pollyanna and omitting the obvious:  when personal truth obliterates the current foundation of a relationship. I work from the place that the base human-person ways of moving among is in relationship. Period. That is the default. So, even when we do decide not to be in each others’ lives in the current configuration of the relationship, we’re still in relationship. Just in a different way. Always.

The inherent state of ever-relationship is beautiful and delicate, and functioning as intended, though when we throw in American settler culture’s total lack of education on how to manage a relationship when personal truth isn’t or can’t be supported, it’s four hells of trauma. We can’t even get to intentional parts. This doesn’t mean that relationships can’t shift from being pivotal to relatively insignificant. They can, and it is right that they do. Again, our contemporary route to that is often not intentional, but avoidant. Nonetheless, the relationship still exists, we’re just not as entrenched in it.

This is where the experience of intra-pandemic Mannaz has brought us at a collective level. We are so inextricably bound into the dysfunction of how we have to behave to survive that we feel dysphoria around what relationships really demand. It leaves us in a place where we either can’t discern our truth, don’t want to share our truth, or have no faith anyone can hold it with us.

Kenaz reversed expresses that we sit with that tension. If it’s the inner discernment part or some externalization of truth that’s pinchy, allow it. Don’t rush to blurt it out, stifle the distress, or recoil from it. Just allow it. It is, after all, also a relationship, and it, and only it, knows how to navigate forward with intention.

This may be a week of calling on Dream Team resources to help hold that stance. Whatever skills, hugs, or reinforcement are needed, this isn’t a week for huge leaps or grand gestures. It’s a week of sitting with the bother.

Jera through the voice of Network suggests also that we remember we’re not doing any of this alone. Yes, it’s personal truth, not collective truth. Or maybe there’s no difference? However we conceive of it, we don’t have to do it alone, and we’re not, even as we sit with this runecast. We’re in relationship with the space-place around us all the time, with ecosystem. Ask it for help, and be specific. Ask for who in the ecosystem can help to carry [the personal tension] to come forward. Make an offering to it, in gratitude. Be demonstrative and know that we are part of an enormous network of being that holds us all the time, but we have to be in intentional engagement with it. This permission to engage us usually comes in the form of us asking for help.

The Multiversal space-place holding us this week looks like this: a darling little Clam basking in Summer, cozily situated in its Mycelium space-place helpers, and calling on the currents of Right that lead us home. Again, so. much. support.

Clam is new to the runecast. It’s been in my box of earthly helpers for a long time, but it hasn’t wanted to participate in the runecast until now. This Clam is Agatized Pelecypoda, which means it’s fossilized more silica (quartz) rather than calcium. Clams help clean up their environment, They clear toxins from the water and dig deep into mud with their powerful muscles. The relevance of those muscles—and what they do—gave them their name. The word “clam” comes from an old form of “clamp,” which, when used in its full form—the name “clamshell” (“clampshell”)—describes how tightly Clam shuts. They’re excellent allies in boundaries, in other words, clearing out crud, and in finding needful things in muddy places.  Pretty good sidekick to have this week.

Summer and Right have been with us a lot lately, and it’s a good thing. The summery backdrop of this week is laid back despite the tension, and it portends coming into power. In my cosmology, Right (That Side) is East/Austri. It is the direction that indicates water, flow, being carried. It specifically is Ocean, which represents home, in that all water flows to the Ocean. All of life emerged from the Ocean. So when this direction comes up in casts, explore what home means, at the most sacred and embodied level. Literally, consider where the body feels best. Consider what makes a space feel sacred. Consider how to get more of those needs met in the immediate living space. Consider how truth situates into home.

For me Right also is the place of dreams, the primordial soup of our desires mingled with multiversal forces that can help create them into being. It is the direction of realizing our agency, of truly grokking that how we as human-persons align with form is unique in evoking deep change here. And with that unique potential is the responsibility of using our agency to benefit all touched by its impact.

Element Mycelium as the one that can best traverse and transmute the ick of the week must be some kin to Network. Mycelium underlies every aspect of life–death, support, birth. It may be the original midwife and deathwalker. Given that, there is no one “meaning” with it. It may be more useful to explore it as the backbone of life, and check in with it to learn how to deepen bonds with ecosystem or how to be fruitful with Network during this time of challenged socializing. In short, Mycelium holds the secrets to souling-in-form well. That means it’s key to humaning well, also.

We have a rune from each aett in this cast, which means all levels of how we soul-in-form are provoked this week. There are elements of just being here that are hard, of being here while being empathetic to others in their own struggle and trying not to kill anybody, and to making peace with the fact that this exact struggle is part of what it means to human well on the planet right now. The challenge is real.


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Half-month Rune Prompts

  • How do you regulate yourself?

  • How do you regulate yourself amidst systems designed to dysregulate you?

  • How do these challenges impact your truth? Your calling?


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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

  • Kenaz – Kehn, Kenuh, Kawn, Kawnuh, Kain, Kainuh

  • Jera – Yer, Yeruh, Yarrow, Yair, Yairuh,Yairaw


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Originally published on Soul Intent Arts.

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.

#beyourcommunity ~ #youareecosystem

elder well, die well, ancestor well


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