Posts Tagged ‘gebo’
For me spirit guides form part of my spirit family or community. On Yggdrasil’s Path we work with the concept of ‘soul clan’; the spirits and energies we work with are bonded to us through the workings of Wyrd and the laws of orlog. Guides, companions and protective spirits don’t just turn up out of the blue, they choose to work with us because they see us as kin, or because our intentions chime with theirs. Family and community is formed through pre-existing ties of kinship, place and culture and this is the same for spirit family and community. When we do power retrieval or soul retrieval we are re-connecting not just with that part of ourselves – but often with a whole new raft of spirit family who were connected with us through that lost aspect. Often when people are preparing for retrieval work they will get dreams and visions that are strange and difficult to understand; it is only in retrospect that we recognise these premonitions as our lost spirit family reaching out to touch us – preparing the way for wholeness to be restored.
Power animals and guides do not just bring companionship, they also bring us wisdom, power and teachings to help us become strong and powerful in our own lives. It is easy to assume that these beings are ‘higher’ than us in some way and, indeed, they will often have access to wisdom beyond our kenning. However, my own experience has taught me that spirit guides do not choose people to work with indiscriminately, nor do they work completely altruistically. Your spirit guides are with you because they want to be – so what sort of person is it that they have chosen to work with?
Your teacher will come when you are ready…
This is a phrase frequently used within shamanic practice, as well as within other magical traditions. It is easy to assume that our teachers are watching us, waiting for us to reach the ‘level’ required in order to work with them; but perhaps this is a flawed way of viewing the teacher/ pupil relationship. My most admired teachers have always told me that they learn huge amounts from their work with their students and Kay and I definitely find at StarFire Alchemy that the phrase ‘Your pupil will come to you when you are ready…’ is equally true.
What I have come to realise in my work is that, as I get to know my teachers, I see that they have chosen to work with me not just because I have so much to learn from them – but because we have so much in common. This can be a very daunting thought when your hand is being guided by your Master Shaman, or when a deity is speaking through you, but I would invite you to consider what qualities your own spirit guides, power animals, deities and companions have in common with you. My own Master Shaman comes from a very different tradition to my own, he teaches me techniques beyond what I have been taught by my ‘living’ teachers. He is in all ways awesome and it took me a huge amount of time to recognise that the combination of enormous gentleness and utter ruthlessness in doing what was necessary for healing, was something that he also saw in me. It is, I believe now, these shared qualities that brought him to work with me – far more than the techniques he identified I was lacking – for he wasn’t the only one who could have come forward to show me these.
Often it is hard to see ourselves in the spirit beings who we work with, indeed, it might feel presumptuous and big headed to assume you have much in common at all – but I promise you those share qualities will be there.
Connection through soul
I work with the concept of the ‘soul tapestry’ and this has been very helpful to me in understanding how connections come about between people and their soul clan. When I was preparing for the channeling for Shadow Sister on The Shamanic Voice I was having a really hard time understanding how to help the spirit of such a strange, silent and dark being communicate through me. She seemed totally alien to me and, in many ways, utterly scary. I wasn’t certain that I would be able to do the channeling at all and sought advice from the northern circle of ancestors (the patron spirits of the show) on how to proceed. I was shown that the channeling could only take place because their were parts of me that resonated with her essence, threads within my being that could connect with hers – once these were found we were able to connect and her energy flowed into me so that I could speak her message. Shadow Sister represented an energy that felt very alien to me and, indeed, one that I might not want to draw on too often. The experience of working with her was one of recognising that the dark mysteries of the death goddess flowed through my blood and cannot be denied. Despite my trepidation the work with her was very valuable both for the show and, personally, for me.
Most of the time, however, the spirit guides we work with speak to aspects of ourselves which we are keen to embrace. They make our hearts beat faster, expand our vision of ourselves and the world around us, and show us how to shed limiting beliefs, overcome our fears, and evolve beyond what we thought was possible. My own healing work, and the work I do with my clients, often involves finding the part of me that is willing and able to connect with the troubling parts of myself I am having difficulty understanding and coping with. I have learned that my soul clan are able to provide me with the support I need to work with the parts of myself I would rather reject – they know the value of these suppressed bits, even if I have yet to recognise it. Most people will have times in their lives where they feel misunderstood, isolated and at odds with the world; at these times spirit guides provide the comfort and wisdom unavailable to us from other sources. The reason we feel safe, accepted and ‘right’ with our guides is because they resonate with us, they ‘speak our language’, share our dreams, and understand our thoughts and emotions without us having to explain ourselves.
When you start out on the shamanic path the guides and companions who come forward in your earliest journeys will often be those that have been with you from the beginning; their nature is kin to yours and your re-union is more like a recognition of a piece of yourself that you had always known was there.
For me, dreams and visions I had as a child now make perfect sense, the ‘imaginary’ friends I had in childhood have returned to me. I didn’t recognise this for a long time because the way they present themselves to me as an adult is quite different to what they looked like to me as a child; but once I made the leap I couldn’t beleieve I hadn’t seen it sooner. Four guides in particular are worth mentioning. In my adult life they appear as two adult women (who are different to each other but ‘sisters’ in spirit), a dragon, and a dinosaur (who I originally thought was also a dragon until I saw her depicted in perfect detail on a BBC documentary). As a child my closest imaginary friends were a pair of twin girls and a family of cuddly dinosaurs who looked distinctly like Barney but with polka dots. It wasn’t until I was reading back over an old diary that I realised that the colouring of my poka-dotted pals was identical to the very beautiful, reptilian skins of my companions today! At that point I reviewed my colourful collection of spirit guides and realised that many of them had made themselves known to me much earlier than I had originally thought…
Each of these beings has brought me a greater understanding of my own nature. I would highly recommend journeying with your own spirits and simply asking ‘What can you tell my about myself? and ‘How are we related?’.
Meeting your spirit guides
You don’t have to be a shamanic practitioner to meet and work with your own spirit guides. There are plenty of books and journeying CDs out there to help you and you can also work with an individual practitioner or in a group to help find these connections. Those in the London area might like to join the Greenwich shamanic spirit circle and you can also contact me for a one-to-one session.
Runes for work with spirit guides and soul clan
On Saturday we moved into the half-month of Ehwaz, the rune of partnership. Ehwaz is said to symbolise the horse and rider, its powers are often linked in with that of the shape shifter or journeying spirit who ‘fares forth’ riding upon or within their spirit companion. The shape of the Ehwaz rune is sometimes likened to that of two horses facing each other and ‘twin’ deities are strongly associated with Ehwaz. Our spirit companions might be thought of as ‘twin’ spirits to us; a fruitful relationship with spirit guides will be one of closeness, giving, and receiving. A spirit guide can also act as a mirror for us, showing us what we need to know about ourselves, reflecting back our strengths and helping us recognise and embrace our weaknesses.
The ‘gifting’ rune of Gebo is also an excellent rune to work with for spirit guides. It is the rune of balanced and fair exchange, it is the kisses at the end of a birthday card and the sign of a promise. When a spirit guide shows you the Gebo rune you know that a gift or promise is being offered or demanded. The word ‘sacrifice’ is a useful one to bear in mind here; it can feel like giving something up, but its real meaning is ‘to make sacred’. When we make offerings to our spirit guides we acknowledge the sacredness of our relationship, when we ignore them, reject them or take them for granted we show them that the relationship is of little value to us.
Othala is the rune of homeland and inheritance. It can be used to call in our ancestors as well as the spirits of hearth, home and land. It is an excellent ‘connector’ rune and the image of the great hearth fire that calls the soul clan to assembly resonates with this rune which completes the rune row of the Elder Futhark. You are the sum of your past, of the connections you have made, experiences you have shared, gifts you have given and blessings you have received. Othala pays honour to that which has shaped and formed us, and it is testimony to our continued devotion to the land we live on and the spirits we share our lives with. Sing Othala to bring them home.
I love this mantra. It comes from an absolutely beautiful and powerful working created by David Rankine which you can find in his wonderful book Becoming Magick: New and Revised Magicks from the New Aeon. I think of it whenever we pass through this time of year, moving through the runes ansuz, raidho and kenaz: inspiration becomes action which becomes manifestation. It fills me with a sense of anticipation and I become convinced that I can jump straight from thought into action Now, if you get David’s book you will see that his working takes a much more balanced approach – I would highly recommend it. As I am a rune-girl I have been looking to the runes to help me rein in some of my most ridiculous beliefs about how much one person can achieve in a finite amount of time.
I, like you I suspect, have a to-d0 list which is far too long. Like a fair number of people I am also stress-prone, I like to heap unachievable deadlines upon myself and then beat myself up mercilessly when I don’t achieve them all. This is one of the reasons why I am studying stress management (the choice to seek a qualification in it also being an example of my tireless pursuit to give myself more to do). That aside, I find that working with the runes helps me to get some perspective. Working with the rune calendar has proven invaluable, balance is key to the runester and, just as singing in your rune circle will bring you balance each day, working through the rune cycle each year ensures that you aren’t taking a lop-sided approach to life.
At this time of year we need to start conserving our energies, laying in a good stock of positive, sustaining energy for the winter ahead. Even though our lives are less obviously tied to the cycles of nature than used to be the case, we are still animals, creatures of the earth who develop, grow and live through the cyclical tides of the seasons. We may not be close to starvation (but there are those in the world who are), and we may not freeze to death (although there will be people who do), but many of us will suffer from seasonal affective disorder or at least find ourselves less bouncy and energy-filled. The hard work of the summer must give way to a more rested, considered approach as winter draws near; give yourself a break, slow down, chill out – why not spend some time meditating with a lovely rune
Following my Raidho meditations last half-month I have reinstated my ‘thinking time’ walks. These are always the first to go when I am stressed, I tell myself I don’t have time and end up lying on the sofa at the end of the day, boggling at the television after a day of frustration and inefficiently used time. I then wake up the next day feeling tired and crotchety and begin the whole cycle again. I find that if I allow myself time for my thinking walk then I am much more likely to find the time to cook proper meals, do my meditation, and make plans with friends. Corrina Gordon-Barnes from You Inspire Me calls this sort of activity your one ‘non-negotiable’ ; Corrina works with self-employed women but I believe her advice holds true for anyone struggling with a to-do list that’s ’whelming’ them (that’s one of my personal promises to myself by the way, I am never ‘over-whelmed’, but I admit to being frequently ‘whelmed’).
So, once you’ve found that bit of routine that is your own, personal ritual, then you can start to tackle your to-do list with a bit more presence of mind. That’s when Kenaz comes in, the fiery rune of creation and manifestation. Use this month’s Kenaz meditation to help you remove those deep blocks and obstacles holding you back, and find the clarity and the energy you need to move forward. Break your to-do list down into managable chunks and focus just on the day’s tasks. If your head is whirling with ideas, then take time each day to scribble them down so you don’t forget them. For small projects, check to see if the idea is still burning brightly three days later – if it’s still drawing your attention after three days then it’s probably worthwhile. If it’s a fairly big project, then three days won’t be long enough – give yourself three weeks and then check back to see if the project still draws your enthusiasm and energy. You can use the time to consult with knowledgeable friends, colleagues and contacts – then when your three weeks is up you’ll be ready to get started if you’re still feeling passionate about the project. The point of waiting is to ensure that the idea isn’t just a throw-away inspiration – place it in the Kenaz furnace and see whether it fizzles to nothing or burns more brighly and fiercly from its time in the flames.
On Thursday this week we will move into the half-month of Gebo, the rune of gifts and fair exchange. Life changes take approximately three-weeks to become habit so the Gebo rune can help us to stick to the commitments we have made during the period of inspiration, change and manifestation we have just passed through. I will be asking Gebo to help me stick to my ‘thinking-time walk’. When I make it into Wunjo , the rune of fulfilment and joy on 13th October, I will know that I have re-established my old habit and am giving myself the best possible chance of having a fruitful, plentiful winter.
For friends, colleagues and students in the sourthern hemisphere, the time is of course different. You are in the lovely half-month of Berkano, the rune of growth and potential. While we in the North are carefully conserving our energy with the sensible Raidho rune of the rider and checking that we are not giving or receiving too much (Gebo) - you will soon be speeding along on the steed of Ehwaz. Enjoy!
Seven rune readings are fraught with controversy but potentially very rewarding. While the number 7 doesn’t have much by way of traditional lore, both The Runecaster’s Handbook and Galdrbok have interesting things to say about the potential for working with seven of the nine worlds mentioned in the Eddas. The argument goes that, although there are nine worlds, only seven of them can be visited (as Niflheim and Muspellheim are realms of pure force – ice and fire respectively – rather than being actual places); as such, only seven of the worlds have descriptions that can be used to create a rune spread.
The World Tree
Before we go any further I think it is worthwhile drawing a quick comparison between the World Tree and the individual. The concept of a macrocosm and microcosm will be familiar to people working in other Western magickal traditions, but briefly speaking, the idea goes that the macrocosm (the cosmos, universe, all creation) and the microcosm (individual), are intimately connected and reflect each other. While the terms ‘microcosm and macrocosm’ come from the Greek Neo-Platonic School of thought, the concept occurs in many traditions including Kabbalah, Hinduism, Sikhism, and Tibetan philosphies.
In Norse mythology, not only are the worlds connected by the mighty tree Yggdrasil (which therefore embodies all creation), but man and woman were also made from trees which were given life force by the Gods – it isn’t too big a leap to intuit a microcosm/macrocosm model at work here. Thorsson provides a seven world spread which can be used to look at a person’s characteristics (see below), and others have gone further and suggested that the seven chakra system may usefully be meshed with rune work (modern rune practitioners often refer to the Chakras as ‘Hvels’ (wheels) and it is this merging of Eastern and Western systems that often proves controversial). Whatever the provenance of rune and chakra work, I can vouch for the fact that students of mine with no previous experience of the runes and plenty of experience with the chakras have identified particular rune energies as flowing from the same chakras as modern rune practitioners have identified.
Seven rune readings, are therefore particularly suited to investigations into mindy, body and spirit – the forces that make up the individual and the way in which they relate to the world around them.
Seven realm reading
In The Runecaster’s Handbook Thorsson lays out twenty-one runes (three horizonal rows and seven vertical), assigning the first row to the past of the situation (Urd), the second to the present (Verthandi) and the third to that which should become (Skuld). I would recommend practicing with just one row to begin with as you will get plenty of material from just seven runes. Preparing for your reading as normal (see One Rune spread) and then lay out seven runes which will be indicitive of the following:
- Hidden, instinctual or ancestral influences (realm of Hel, the underworld)
- Creativity, memory and emotions (Svartalfheim, realm of the dwarves)
- How you respond to crisis, change and chance (Jotunheim, the realm of etins/giants)
- Manifested reality (Midgard, the realm of humans)
- Planning, cognition and intellect (Ljossalfheim, realm of the elves)
- Vitality, harmony and balance (Vanaheim, realm of the gods of the land)
- Higher consciousness (Asgard, realm of the gods of the ‘heavens’)
Seven ’chakra’ reading
When looking at Thorsson’s seven rune spread I noticed some interesting similarities between the realms and the qualities assigned to the seven chakras. Although there isn’t a complete overlap, it gave me enough food for thought to investigate further. The method I have ended up with draws on Caroline Myss’s seven stages of power and healing (Anatomy Of The Spirit); Myss combines the chakras, kabalah and the Christian sacraments to describe her seven stages and has ended up with some fundamental principles for each chakra which seem to me to correspond well with both the seven worlds and with the first seven runes in the Elder Futhark (note that other runes are normally assigned to the chakras but this system works well for me as it focuses on the flow of energy from one rune to the next, linking the chakras together). Below I give the meaning of each of the seven positions, and an example reading (note that the picture of the example reading as number 1 at the bottom and number 7 at the top as this is how the chakras appear on he body):
- Tribal power, where you come from, connection with all other things. This corresponds to the underworld and connections with ancestors (note Othala (ancestors, home) is the 24th rune and its energies therefore flow into Fehu as the first rune). I assign Fehu to this chakra and therefore connect it to Audhumla, the cow who nurtures all beings. In the example reading the first rune (at the bottom) is Ingwaz; this individual has a great deal of unrealised potential and can draw strength from the power of the land and her divine ancestors (in Norse mythology, man is descended from the Gods and Ingwaz affirms the seed of the divine in each one of us).
- Partnership, emotional and physical relationships, authority and control. This corresponds with the realm of the dwarves who often provide support to the Gods and are able to harness the power of the earth through their skill and creativity. The rune Uruz complements Fehu as it manifests the strength of the mighty Aurochs (a wild cow now extinct) and brings health and vitality, it is strongly connected with rites of passage and the forging of character and tribal power. In the example reading I was guided to draw two runes, the Kenaz rune (creativity and skill) hidden by a slightly inverted Ansuz rune. This suggests to me that the person is trying to control her emotions through the application of logical thought when, in fact, channeling these emotions into creative endevour and expression would be more helpful.
- Personal power in relation to the external world, individuality, self esteem. Corresponding to the realm of the giants, this relates to the person’s ability to deal with events outside their control. The 3rd rune is Thurisaz which builds upon the strength and endurance of Uruz. Thurisaz is often linked to the subconscious as well as forces of chaos and destructiveness – appropriate when we consider how a loss of personal power and self esteem impacts upon the individual. In the example reading the inverted Raidho indicates that the individual does not feel able to support herself or progress on her life journey. As the rune energies seem to flow upwards from one chakra to the next, I would anticipate that the advice given in relation to the second chakra would help with this issue but a further reading might be needed once the Ansuz blockage has started to dissipate.
- Emotional power, mediation between body and spirit. The heart chakra corresponds to Midgard, the realm of mankind and will therefore say a lot about the individual’s feelings about the world around them and the way in which he or she projects his/her identity. The corresponding rune is Ansuz (logical thought, communication, inspiration) which, again, flows out of the Thurisaz rune – emotional power relying on a healthy partnership between the subconscious and conscious minds. In my reading, the individual has Mannaz (the rune of man) inverted and is struggling with her self image and sense of identity – again I believe this is tied in with the previous runes and that work on chakra 2 will start to remedy this problem.
- Power of Will, union with the divine. This chakra corresponds to the realm of the elves and relates to intellect and foresight. The corresponding rune is Raidho which is both the rune of journeying (moving forward with your life journey) and reliance on the parts of the self that connect with the divine. Again, I have found that the energy of the preceding rune is also important – the inspiration of Ansuz flows up from the heart and unites with the ‘right action’ of Raidho to influence the way in which the individual expresses herself. In the example reading, there is a blockage at the throat chakra – the person is finding it difficult to trust in her own destiny and the choices she has made, she seeks logical assurances (with the Ansuz rune earlier) to remedy emotional difficulties and is not aligning herself with possibilties Wyrd has sent her way (represented by the inverted Perthro rune).
- The Power of the Mind, link between mind and spirit, source of wisdom. Vanaheim is the realm of the Vanir, powerful beings who formed an alliance with the Aesir and govern magic, sensuality, wealth and the natural world. The corresponding rune here is Kenaz which is associated with perception, enlightenment and knowledge as well as creativity and crafting. In the example reading the rune Sowelo is a very positive influence, suggesting that the person is open to guidance from her higher self and that the wisdom she is seeking is available to her and will guide her true.
- Spiritual connection, internal awareness, transcendance. The realm associated with this chakra is Asgard, the realm of the Gods. The corresponding rune is Gebo, the gift, a rune of exchange and connection. Again, the example reading is very positive, the rune Wunjo indicates wholeness, joy and an integrated self – in a sense Wunjo represents the harmonious union of all seven chakras within the indivual. The presence of Wunjo suggests that our querent is on the right path, despite the seeming obstacles present within the lower chakras.
Yesterday saw the end of the half-month of Gebo and the beginning of Wunjo – the rune of joy. I had a lovely half-month with Gebo practising some new breath and body techniques and re-visiting old ones. I also read The Gift: How the Creative Spirit Transforms the World by Lewis Hyde which I would definitely recommend for anyone exploring the mysteries of Gebo.
Growing up in the UK I used to associate gifts with Christmas and birthdays, strange rituals of excess where material goods are used to temporarily fill an emptiness we can’t name. Ceremonies of exchange have, in many ways, become infantalised, consigned to childish joy that adults participate in vicariously. As I grew older I looked to the gifts of the natural world - to the changing seasons and the beauty of sun and starlight, and that sense of emptiness lessened. Thinking about Gebo again and, reading The Gift, I saw that the power of Gebo is still alive in our communities and cultures, we still maintain rituals of exchange that resist commodification, and there are more and more people striving to connect with each other and with the world that we are part of. To wear the badge of Gebo upon your heart is to give, to accept, and to reciprocate, in a very personal way; it is to allow the act of gift giving to touch you and to change you.
If the commodity moves to turn a proft, where does the gift move? The gift moves towards the empty place. As it turns in its circle it turns toward him who has been empty-handed the longest, and if someone appears elsewhere whose need is greater it leaves its old channel and moves toward him. Our generosity may leave us empty, but our emptiness then pulls gently at the whole until the thing in motion returns to replenish us. The Gift (pg. 23)
Now we reach the half-month of Wunjo, which brings us another positive and, seemingly, gentle rune. If Gebo is about social partnership and obligation, Wunjo is joy in one another, it is kinship and warmth and happiness within the self. Thinking about the rune calendar, it seems to me that Gebo warns that change must come, the wheel must turn – Wunjo gives us time to prepare ourselves for the winter ahead and the coming of Hagalaz.
An important concept for Wunjo is that of will-power; this week a close friend of mine reminded my that there is a difference between ‘will-power’ and following your true will, and this is very important for Wunjo. When we think of will-power we think of force, of ‘mind over matter’; but the will-power of Wunjo is of a different type, tying in with personal happiness and fulfillment rather than outward success and accolade. In stories and meditations Wunjo is often illustrated with a tale of an individual who visits family and is filled with a happiness which then sustains them during a difficult journey that must be undertaken alone. During this half month think about the things that bring you true joy and happiness, what makes you feel warm inside and will sustain you as the hardships of winter set in.
Suggested reading: The Ultimate Happiness Prescription: 7 Keys to Joy and Enlightenment
On Monday we moved to the half month of Kenaz. After the inspiration of Ansuz and the planning and action of Raidho, Kenaz gives you the opportunity to combine thought and action to manifest your desire. Kenaz is the rune of the artisan, the craft worker, and particularly of the blacksmith who uses the magic of the forge to transform the elements. In a sense, each of us is our own smith – because we are able to create outselves anew each day. This half month should therefore be a good time for creative projects, burning away the ‘dross’ in our lives, and re-forging ourselves. I ended the half-month of Raidho by going on a firewalk at the Martinsell Centre which was an immensly transformative experience, and began Kenaz doing some decorating and beginning a new painting…
The negative side of Kenaz is the responsibility that comes with its gifts – will yor act of creation be ‘good enough’? Kenaz is not just the fire of the forge, it is the torch light: the light that shines the way but also reveals the shadows lurking ahead. Kenaz is sometimes described as an ‘ulcer’ and, for me, its negative side can be about worries and fears, those ominous shadows that stop us manifesting our desires – although all too often they are just a trick of the light.
The Autumn Equinox falls within Kenaz. Make the most of the remaining light and hold your torch high - ready for the descent into darkness. At this time, prisoners were released, restoring the balance (and perhaps also cutting down on the number of mouths to feed!). Now is the time to burn away your worries and fears, to free yourself to create and harvest: ready for the gifts and binding power of Gebo.
My reading for this half month is The Craftsmanby Richard Sennet. Sennet suggests that there is a craftsman in every person and explores what this means and whether whether our competitive, consumer driven society has eroded the true meaning of ‘craft’.
I started using this technique because it is important to me that the runes are used to shape fate wisely, rather than being seen as messages from a pre-ordained future. I also wanted to see what effect consciously bringing the rune into my life (rather than drawing it and then waiting to see where it would pop up) would have. The technique works equally well for tarot and is a great way of learning the meanings and symbolism behind the rune/card as well as for deepening your relationship with its energy.
Essentially you pick one rune at the beginning of the day (you can do this in the morning or the night before – remember that the runes originate from a culture that viewed day as starting at nightfall). Remind yourself of the different meanings behind the rune using your favourite rune book/s (and yes I am working on a reading list). For the rest of the day you want to try and do some or all of the following:
- Look for the energy of your rune around you and welcome it in. For example, if you picked Wunjo a friend or family member may get in contact – take time to enjoy it.
- Give the rune an opportunity to enter your life. For Laguz you might take a long bath or go out in the rain, for Jera you might reflect on all the changes that have happened to you in the last year and how much you have achieved.
- Embody the rune. Think about its qualities and how you as a person embody them. How often does that nature of that rune express itself through you? How does it make you feel? For Nauthiz you might think about what you really need and whether you are allowing yourself to get it. For Gebo you could focus on generosity – how freely do you give of yourself and how easily do you accept help, support and companionship from others? If you spot that you are out of balance do at least one thing that day to set yourself to rights.
When you read up on the rune it is likely that particular concepts will speak to you more than others. Don’t force yourself to focus on the ones that don’t come as easily, let them simmer at the back of your mind and see whether they mean more to you at the end of the day. You might get stuck with a rune that doesn’t speak to you at all or which seems difficult to work with.
A frequently cited ‘difficult’ rune is Thurisaz which can be a very negative rune, but there is negativity all around us and we must learn to deal with it or lead a very blinkered existence. Embodying Thurisaz might also mean being aware of your boundaries, whether others respect them, and how you react when you feel threatened.