The birch tree is one the fastest spreading trees and Berkano speaks of fast, eager growth. This is a rune of spring, the green shoots rising, flowers exploding in a riot of colour upon the woodland floor, the crying of baby animals calling for food so they may grow strong. The full breasts and belly of a pregnant woman can also be seen in the shape of this rune.
Berkano is helpful for female cycles, pregnancy and birthing and can be used very effectively with Perthro and Fehu. It is a gentle, sensual rune and has a protective element which makes it a good talisman for children (especially girls). It can also be helpful and healing for those who had negative sexual experiences resulting in represseion, anxiety or fear.
My rune staff is made of silver birch and I find that the protective, expansive nature of Berkano complements the energies of Isa, Eiwaz, Teiwaz, Algiz and Laguz which I often work with in conjunction with the staff. All of these runes evoke powerful energies cascading vertically up and down the practitioner and the birch wood is very helpful to me in staying grounded. I would be interested to know whether it was as effective for a male practitioner as this is a very ’female’ rune.
Traditional meaning: Birch tree
Gods: Urd, Holda, Berchta
Colour: Green, yellow
Half month: 14th March – 30th March
Plants: Birch, Lady’s Mantle
Body: Ovaries, womb, breasts, fertility
Animal: Bear, swan
Aroma: Geranium, Dill
Object of power: Unknown
Berkano is the second rune in the Third Aett (third and final family) of the Elder Futhark. I have developed a series of recorded journeys to help you experience the energies of the runes in an accessible way. There are three downloads available for purchase covering the first, second and third Aetts. Each download comes with a PDF guide explaining what to do and giving the rune correspondences; a track to open sacred space and a track to close it; and eight rune journeys. Take a journey to encounter the rune Berkano for yourself, the guided meditation provides an accessible way for you to encounter the rune. Journeys with the Elder Futhark – The Third Aett costs £9.00, you will be sent the download autmoatically by DigitalDelivery following payment by Paypal.
- Oswald the Runemaker’s summary analysis of Berkano
- Magin’s discussion of the half-month of Berkano 2011