THE ELDERFUTHARK RUNES **
Hail to whomever spoke them,
Hail to whomever knows them,
Gain them who grasp them,
Happy they who heed them.
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Joanne Walmsley Sacred Scribes
As the Tarot and runes are so similar in concept, myth and meaning, it is no wonder that the two should interweave as they do.As of recent times and most customary today, spreads or lays are based on those of the Tarot, rather than the traditional ‘scattering of the stones’ of old. Basic and traditional Tarot spreads can be just as easily utilised with the runes.
‘Spreads’ or the laying of multiple runes can be performed, telling a story or giving added insight to the issue in question.
For more insight into an issue, it is often necessary to draw up to three (3) runes.The number 3 in the practices of the Ancient Oracles, such as the runes, Tarot and I Ching (as well as within Spiritual and Christian teachings) represents the ‘Trinity within’.It also represents the ‘past’, ‘present’ and ‘future’ and has vast spiritual symbology spanning across many different faiths and beliefs.
The first rune represents the factors that have led up to this point.This rune provides the ‘overview of the situation’.
The second rune sums up the situation at the present moment and identifies the ‘challenge’.
The third rune indicates the ‘course of action needed’ and represents the possible outcomes of the situation.
This method allows for the runes to colour and enhance each other with their meanings and add insight. It takes each subsequent rune, then builds upon the picture it started, colouring in the detail.
A lead on to this form of casting is to draw three runes for each of these three positions (nine runes in total).
It also coincides with the Norse mythology concept of the three Worlds, each having another three Worlds within. This method adds complication, but represents a more meaningful and insightful interpretation.
Another basic and simple spread adapted from the Tarot uses five runes.Employing the five rune spread can help you to identify distinctive features of a given situation that may be too complex for the ‘Odin’s Rune’ or three rune spread's simplicity.
There are two effective methods to use with five runes, both of which give added insight.A rune can be chosen, noted, then placed back amongst the other runes. This is done in case that rune in particular needs to reappear further into the reading to give added insight.
Alternatively though, each rune can be chosen and spread as usual.The five-rune spread involves drawing and laying the runes one below the next, vertically.
The first rune represents the ‘overview of the situation’.
The second identifies the ‘challenge’.
The third is the ‘course of action called for or needed’.
The fourth is the ‘sacrifice’.
And the fifth and final rune indicates the ‘new situation evolving’.
* The word ‘sacrifice’ in the context of the spread is intended to represent the choices and options that life offers you.It tells of what is to be shed or discarded in order for the ‘new’ to come about.
The ‘Runic’ or ‘Celtic Cross’ spread was inspired by the Tarot and is read accordingly.This spread calls for the selection of six runes, which are then set out in the form of the ‘Runic' or 'Celtic Cross’.
The format is such:
In the ‘Runic Cross’ spread the first rune represents the ‘Past’ -that from which you are coming or what lies directly behind you.
The second rune represents ‘You Now’; where you stand in the world within the given situation, today.
The third rune, ‘Future’ stands for what lies ahead of you; what is coming to fruition in your life.
The fourth rune shows the ‘Foundation’ of the matter, involving both conscious and subconscious thoughts and emotions, which affect the forces involved.
The fifth rune, ‘Challenge’, shows the force, nature and source of the obstacles in your path.
The sixth and final rune indicates the ‘new situation’ that will evolve as you successfully meet your ‘Challenge.’
This is your outcome.
The ‘Runic Cross’ spread is most complex and requires a great degree of consideration and contemplation.This in turn, requires a lot of time on the caster's behalf.If, after a considerable amount of time, you are still unclear as to the rune’s instructions and solutions, draw a single rune and place it above the sixth position (New Situation).
This rune is the ‘Resolution’ rune and will help you to recognise the essence of the issue, then find resolution.
Many runecasters adopt their own methods and means when both casting and interpreting runes.As each human is individual, so too are their issues,emotions and comprehensions.Again, much like Tarot, the reader or caster becomes familiar with their own tools and uses them as a focal point, therefore sometimes leaving pinpoint accuracy up to the individual.