Rune Readings

While rune readings aren’t the most commonly mentioned type of psychic readings today, they do seem to be gaining popularity. Runes have been around for a very long time, and rune readings can be quite useful when done by someone who truly understands how they work and how to work with the stones.

To understand rune stones, it’s important to understand the history behind them and the mythology surrounding them.

Runic alphabets were the first writing systems developed by ancient Germanic peoples. The symbols used weren’t just letters, they were also representations of cosmic and natural powers or principles.  And it was believed that by writing a runic symbol, you could call on and direct the force or principle it represented.

Runes are closely associated with Odin, the Norse god of war. But Odin is no one-trick pony. Odin is the god of many other things as well, including knowledge and poetry, and he’s the ultimate seeker of wisdom. He even sacrificed one of his eyes to Mimir, the Norse god of wisdom, for a drink from his well. That’s another story for another time, but it demonstrates how determined and dedicated Odin is in his pursuits.

It is said that the original home of the runes is the Well of Urd, which could also be described as the Well of Destiny. Growing from the center of the well is a massive ash tree named Yggdrasil. Yggdrasil, within its branches and roots, holds the Nine Worlds. The worlds are the lands where humans, gods and all other manners of beings live.

Also living in the well are three women who are called the Norns. They function in a manner similar to the Fates, who are known in Greek mythology as the weavers of the threads of life. Instead of measuring, weaving and cutting threads, however, the Norns carve the lives and destinies of all living beings in all nine worlds into Yggdrasil’s trunk.

What makes the Norns’ carvings different from the Fates’ threads is that the carvings can be altered. You might ask how that can be, but what you have to understand is that Yggdrasil is a living entity itself. It’s a living tree and, like all living things, it changes as it grows and is influenced by outside forces – including free will.

The whole system is based on time being circular, rather than the common modern idea of time being linear. Basically, the waters of the Well of Urd hold the past. The waters nourish Yggdrasil, which represents the present. And the dewdrops that fall from Yggdrasil’s leaves re-enter the well’s waters – essentially meaning that the present affects the past as much as the past affects the present and the future.

So how did Odin get in on the act? Well, apparently he watched the Norns do their thing and was a bit envious of their power. He decided he wanted in on it, so he set his sights on gaining access to the runes himself. It would prove to be no easy task.

The runes would only let themselves be known to those who proved themselves worthy of receiving their wisdom. To prove his worthiness, Odin hanged himself from Yggdrasil and stabbed himself with his own spear. As he hung there, Odin looked into the depths of the well and called to the runes. Straddling the line between life and death, he hung for nine days and nights, receiving no help from anyone, as he had forbidden the other gods from even giving him so much as a drink of water. On the ninth night, the runes finally deemed Odin worthy and revealed themselves and their secrets to him. Over time, Odin passed on the knowledge of the runes to his followers.

Today, rune stone are used for divination and there are several ways they can be read. Similar to the way tarot cards are used, runes can also be laid out in different configurations depending on what kind of insight you’re looking for. They can also be “cast” rather than laid out, which means the stones are basically tossed onto a surface, and they are read depending on how they fall.

Some of the most popular configurations include:

  • Single Rune – Helps answer a specific question.
  • Diamond – Provides insight into events occurring in the near future.
  • Circle – Centers on the romantic energy between two people.
  • The Norns – Focuses on the past, present, and future.
  • Cross – Examines the life path.
  • Well of Wyrd – A complex reading for insight into several questions and possibilities.

In terms of divination, rune readings are more advisory in nature, as opposed to being a way to “see” specific future happenings or past events. It’s pretty much a given that the future is in a constant state of flux and changes depending on the decisions we make, but this point is driven home even more clearly by the idea of time being circular.

Because runes are most often used to seek advice, you’ll get clearer answers if you go to them with clear questions. You may even get different answers if you present different options for your actions regarding your situation because the stones will see different outcomes. Just like other divination tools, rune stones won’t always give clear-cut answers and they’ll need to be interpreted by the reader. Which brings us to the question of the reader.

If you are interested in receiving a rune reading, you’ll want to ask a potential reader about their experience with rune stones. You could ask them how they learned to read the stones and whether they use a laid-out configuration or cast them.

One thing you definitely want to ask is what the stones they use are made of. Their answer to that question can be very telling. Rune stones should be made from natural materials such as wood, stone, bone, clay or metal. Glass and ceramic are also sometimes used, which is fine because they are made from natural materials (sand or clay, accordingly).

The rune stones’ power comes from nature, so the materials they are made of must come from nature. If your potential reader says they use stones made of plastic or another synthetic substance, walk away. Their stones have no connection to nature and no power. They might just as well be Scrabble tiles.

When you find a reader you feel comfortable with, prepare for your reading by deciding what questions you want to ask. Determine what your current situation is and what options you might have, so you can present them as well. If you’re not sure what kind of options you have, that’s okay too. You might also prefer to have a more general reading regarding your life path, or a more all-encompassing reading like the one the Norns spread provides.

Whatever your goal is for your rune reading, enjoy yourself and remember that the future is never set in stone – but it may be seen through reading them.