Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Alternative Names
Ur, Uriz

Key Phrase
‘To find your true strengths,
you must first face your weaknesses’.

Auroch (wild Oxen)

Viking Rune Equivalent and Meaning
The aurochs or wild ox.


Tarot Equivalent
Strength  -  8  -  VIII

Divinatory Meaning

Corresponding Letter    

Associated Colour

Associated Herb
Sphagnum Moss
Associated Gemstone

Associated Tree

Associated Myths and Deities
Ullr; Loki; Odin (as a Shaman); Ymir. Sacred to Thor – god of thunder and strength.

Manifestation Uses
To strengthen the will; increased sexual potency and energy;  heightens skills for hunting; increases inner-knowledge and inner-wisdom; it is protective when used in defence of one’s territory, property, children or the self.

Relationship Interpretation
Durability of the relationship.

The Uruz rune will bring to light issues regarding power and leadership issues. A fight or compromise in regards to individuality and personal choice may come up to be dealt with, within the context of the relationship.

Healing Colour and Qualities
Stimulates the brain ‘healing’ centre; maintains health and stimulation of healing; can be combined with the Isa rune to be used to heal the neck, liver and throat.  In conjunction with the rune Othila, the chest and lung areas can be healed.

As a talisman, the Uruz rune can be worn by anyone seeking a surge in sexual potency, or for a stronger will.

Uruz Drawn Upright                      
Strength, energy, primal force, passion, vitality, instinct, wildness, sexuality and sexual desire, raw creative power, fertility, the unconscious mind, primitive mind, irrationality, shamanic experiences, ‘rites of passage’, physical strength, physical speed, untamed potential, , collective strength, good health, freedom, adventure, test, action, courage, tenacity, understanding, wisdom, endurance, assertiveness, the common good, over-coming obstacles, masculine potency, the shaping of power and pattern and the formulation of the self.

URUZ is ‘Energy Released’.

The second rune of the first aett is Uruz. This rune is associated with strength, tenacity, courage and survival skills. The energy of this rune is raw, powerful, and distinctly masculine. It is pure elemental fire.

Uruz is symbolised by the Auroch, or ox. The ‘auroch’ was a species of wild oxen or huge bovine, similar to a longhorn bull, that was once found all over Europe. They had become extinct since sometime in the 17th Century. Aurochs were reputed to have had horns as long as six feet and were highly prized by people as drinking horns. Paintings of aurochs have been found in Neolithic caves and it was believed that the hunting of the aurochs had a significance as a ‘rite of passage’ for boys entering manhood.

Uruz is the rune of the ‘god of the Sacred hunt’ and his shaman or priest.

The auroch is the epitome of the wild beast as opposed to the domesticated cattle represented by the Fehu rune.
The auroch, the ancient symbol for the Uruz rune, when domesticated could transport heavy loads. Understanding and acknowledging both the tamed and untamed sides of the self brings one into balance.

Uruz promises wisdom and an opportunity to gain deeper insight into oneself.

The ancient people of the Norse saw the horn of the auroch as a symbol of strength. It was used to swear oaths upon, make firm friendships by and to clinch deals.

In contrast to the Fehu rune, which indicates ‘that which one possesses’, Uruz shows the untamed sides of the self, indicating ‘that which one can achieve.’

Following the mundane day to day existence and survival represented by Fehu, Uruz represents the first recognition by mankind of the ‘Divine in nature’. It shows mankind’s first attempt to control it through the use of sympathetic ‘magic’. 

Uruz is the rune of ‘will and enforcement’. It represents the physical movement of things in our world, as well as ideas and notions.

On the physical side, this rune represents age, gravity and rain;  rain because it starts on earth, goes up into the sky and returns to the earth; it is the drawn formula for gravity :
‘what goes up, must come down’.

As for age, Uruz is a ‘roadmap of life’ – we are born, we live, we die. We have the physical ability to control what happens in the material world around us as we live, but we have no control over birth or death.

On the mental side, Uruz is a perfect example of ‘thought’. An idea starts within our subconscious, then comes into our active mind, then into our physical world.

Uruz is a formative or protective force which is un-manifested, but which can shape things to come.

Uruz represents an awareness of death and of our own mortality. Within the ‘rites of passage’, the boy who has killed the auroch has entered manhood and has therefore been initiated into the first level of the mysteries  -  the awareness that the source of all life, is death. This rune also often represents ‘terminations and new beginnings.’

The meaning of the symbol of the Uruz rune can relate to a wild energy, an untamed potential, a tenacity and driving force.

There may also be sexual connotations in this rune. 

The Uruz rune also indicates one’s personal health and vitality and also represents the unconscious energies within.

Uruz is associated with the primal creative force. It is a spiritual or Divine force which pervades the universe;  a vital essence. 

Uruz is a ‘shaping force’. The shape of the runic symbol is likened to the horns of the primal cow or the auroch. The Fehu rune is also associated with the Primal Cow, but in a different sense. Uruz represents force and freedom or a force always straining to be free if contained. It is protective when used in defence of one’s territory, property, children or the self.

Drawing Uruz shows that you have the strength within you to fulfill your dreams, goals and desires, but with that strength comes responsibility. Use your strength to keep focused on your path and to stop yourself being off-balanced by others. There are always some people who project negativity and are negative within themselves. That is their choice and life path with many hard lessons to learn along the way. Strength comes from not letting those people and their antics upset you. This comes from mastering the ego. 

When the Uruz rune is drawn it may be indicating that a loss may be an opportunity in disguise.

The Uruz rune often indicates in a reading that you may have been living a lifestyle that you have outgrown. This is a rune of passage and with that is the cycle of initiation. 

Positive growth and change may involve a descent into darkness, but as part of the cycle of perpetual renewal, you will emerge into the light. 

Events occurring now may prompt you to undergo a search within;  a true study of who you are, then possibly a change in a positive direction to suit you and who you are today.

Prepare for an opportunity which may at first be disguised as a loss or sacrifice. It may involve the loss of something or someone to which you have an emotional attachment or bond. 

A change in relationship or ties being severed may indicate that a new perspective or lifestyle may be in order. It may be a lesson that change is inevitable, and you have no choice but to move with it.

Drawing the Uruz rune in a reading is indicating that you need to learn to adapt yourself to the demands of this creative time.  Firm principles are attached to this rune, and if they are adhered to, will prove beneficial … today and beyond. 

At the same time, humility is called for since in order to rule, you must learn how to serve. Uruz puts you on notice that your soul and the Universe support your new growth.

‘Strength is not a force with which
 to exert power over others,
but a force to stop others exerting power over you.’

Uruz Drawn Reversed (Merkstave)
Weakness, obsession, misdirected force, domination and/or manipulation by others, sickness, inconsistency, ignorance, lust, greed, brutality, rashness, unpredictable power, callousness and violence, ill-health.

Drawn reversed or merkstave, the Uruz rune shows that you must acknowledge and accept your weaknesses. Look honestly within yourself without fear, knowing that once you recognise those areas of weakness, you will be able to work on them and turn them into strengths.

It may seem as though your own strengths are being used against you. You may miss opportunities and find a weakening of your position or disposition. You may fail to take notice or advantage of positive things placed before you.

Uruz reversed tells of one who is easily influenced by others, leading to lost opportunities and bad decision-making.

For some, Uruz drawn reversed (or merkstave) will act as an alert or warning system, offering clues and messages in the form of minor failures and disappointments. For others, it may provide a very hard jolt. 

The merkstave or reversed Uruz rune calls for serious thought about the quality of the relationship with yourself, others and the Universe. Take heart though, as with the constant cycle of death and rebirth, everything we experience has a beginning, a middle and an end. This is followed by a new beginning. Don’t draw back from the passage of darkness;  know within that a bright new start awaits you.


Joanne Walmsley


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