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~ RuneMal: The Art of Rune Casting ~

     Like many games, sacred and secular, the Runes are meant to be played upon a field.  The field represents the world that is always coming to be and passing away.  you can want to use a special piece of fabric, colored or white, that you keep for this purpose alone.  When you unfold the cloth that serves as your field, that very act can become a silent meditation.

    In this section we will go over the different way that you can cast your runes to determin what lays in front of you and what you must do.  Since there are a couple of ways that the runes can be read, here are some quick links just in case you are looking for a particular section of this page:


     This is the most practical and simple use of Oracle and consists of drawing one Rune for an overview of an entire situation.  Doing so can help you to focus more clearly on your issue and provide you with a fresh perspective.  What you are, in effect, doing is inviting the mind to function intuitively, by invoking the wisdom of the Knowing Self.
     Drawing a single Rune is particularly helpful under stressful conditions.  You may find yourself dealing with matters that demand action now, and the truth is you don't have enough information.  To reach a decision, all you require is your bag of Runes and, is possible, a quite place.
     Drawing a single Rune is not only valuable in a time of crisis.  This technique is useful whenever you require an overview of any situation.  On a long drive or commute between home and work, some people keep their Runes beside them on the seat.  Drawing Odin's Rune often reveals the humor in a difficult matter.  And why not?
     If you are concerned about someone who is far away and you are unable to contact that person, focus away and you are unable to contact that person, fouc directly on that individual, and then draw a Rune.  This practice opens a doorway in the mind to see the nonordinary.  you can discover that it is indeed possible to know things at a distance, and that your true vision extends as far as the mind can see.
     Use the single Rune drawing to honor significant events in your life: Birthdays, the New Year, solstices, and equinoxes, the death of a friend, births, anniversaries, and other special occasions.  You may want to record these casting in a Rune Journal.


     The number "three: figures prominently in the oracular practices of the acients.  The Three Rune Spread which, according to Tacitus, was already in use 2,000 years aho, is satisfactory for all but the most demanding situations.
     With an issue clearly in mind, select thress runes one at a time, and place them from right to left, in order of selection.  To avoid consciously changing the direction of the stones, especially as you become familiar with their symboles, you may want to place them blank side up, and then turn them over.
     Once you have selected the Runes, they will ie before you in thie fashion: Reading fromt he right, the first rune provides the Overview of the Situation; the second Runes (center) identifies the Challenge; and the thrid Rune (on the left) indicates the Course of Action Called For.




How you happen to turn these stones may still alter the direction of the glyphs to either an Upright or Reversed postion, but this too is part of the process.  Since only nine Runes read the same Upright and the Reversed, the reading for the other sixteen will depend on how you place or turn the stones.

A Sample Reading

     A friend came to me for a Rune reading after his wife left him.  He was experiencing a great deal of pain, realizing how much the relationship meant to him and agonizing over his loss.  His issue was, "What am i to learn from this seperation?"  These are the Runes he drew:

     The thress Runes where Interpreted in the following manner:  Reading form the right, the First rune, EOLH/Algiz , the Rune of Protection Reversed, addresses his sence of being totally vulnerable, unprotected.  It is a counsel to be mindful that only right action and correct conduct provide protection at such a time.  The second Rune, Ken/Kano , is the Rune of Opening.  He is encouraged to trust hiw process and consider what aspects of his old conditioning must change.   The Thrid cam Nauthiz/NYD, the Rune of Constraint and Pain.  The new growth will not be free of anguish.  And yet his wife's departure prompted him to undertake serious work on himself.  He is asked to be mindful, moroever, that rectification must come before progress.

     To sum up, the three Runes are saying that, although he is feeling vulnerable and exposed, with pain comes the necessary clarity to get on with the work of self-change.  As he progressesm he is reminded to consider the postivie uses of adversity.


       Drawing a single Rune -- Odin's Rune -- will, as a rule, provide sufficient information to enable you to proceed with right action and skillful means.  And yet situations will sometimes arise when the need-to-know extends beyond the authority of a single stone or even a Three Rune Spread.  Employing the Five Rune Spread can help to identify the distinctive features of a situation that might otherwise overwhelm you with it's complexity.

     Begin by clearly formulating your issue.  The draw five stones from the bag, one at a time, and place them one below the other.  In Descending order, let the Runes stand for the following:
  1. Overview of the Situation
  2. Challenge
  3. Course of Action Called for
  4. Sacrifice
  5. New Situation Evolving

     If you select five Runes, and place them one below the other in front of you, the odds against drawing this particular spread are 607,614 to 1.  If, however, you decide to  mark down the Rune you select and then return it to the bag, you will be making each selection form a full set Runes, and the odds against drawing this particular spread soar to 312,800,000 to 1.  As you can see, done this way, the Five Runes Spread is absolutely personal and specific.

     The term "Sacrifice," in the foruth position, is intended as recognition that life offers you choices, options, that are often mutually exclusive.  The concept of sacrifice has, over time, come to be associated primarily with pain and loss.  As applied in the Five Rune Spread, however, the term refers to that which has to be peeled away, shed or discarded - as is called for in the Rune Othila/Ethel -- in order for new wholeness to emerge.  Originally bonding of two Latin words, sacrificium and facere, one of the core meaning of sacrifice is "surrender to God."


       This spread calls for selecting six Runes which are set in the form of a Runic or Celtic Cross.  The pattern is as follows:

3 5

     The first Rune represents the Past, that from which you are coming, what lies directly behind you.  The second Rune, represents You Now.  The Third Rune or Future Rune, stands for what lies ahead of you, what is coming into being in your life.  The Fourth Rune provides a look at the foundation of the matter under consideration, the unconscious elements and archetypal forces involved.  The fifth, or Challenge Rune, suggests the nature of the obstacles in your path.  The Final Rune indicates the New Situation that will evolve as you successfully meet your challenge.

     Since a considerable amount of iinformation is contained in the Runic Cross, this spread often provides the incentive for deep thought and reflection.  If, after laying out and considering these six Runes, you still lack sufficient clarity, draw a single Rune.  This final Rune, the Rune of Resolution, will help you to reorgnize the essence of the situation.


     This spread is for those who wish to experiment with the idea of reincarnation.  It furnishes a three level perspective on your passage, and is laid out in the form of the Rune of Fertility, Inquz.  The Runes represent (1) Birth and Childhood Condtions, (2) Your Present, (3) Future in this life, (4) Past Incarnations and (5) Future Incarnation.  The Runes are placed in the following manor:

Future Incarnation
Future in this life
Birth and Childhood
Past Incarnation

     The Three Lifetimes Spread provides  you with information concerning unresolved aspects of your past.  Once these elements are recognized, you can seek to modify your present situation, thus affecting both your future in this life and your next soul cycle.


    This game is not about winning or losing. Rune Play focuses on whatever issue people want to examine, and play continues until such time as the issue seems adequately clarified to all players.  If possible, each player should have a set of Runes, although one set will suffice.  If only one bag of stones is used, however, the dynamics of the game are altered significantly.

     Select three Runes and place them in front of you, glyph side down.  The first player turns over a Rune and interprets it as as it relates to the issue.  Then, the next players turns over a Rune, give an interpretation and has the option of relating it to the previous Rune.  The third player turns over a rune, offers an interpretation and has the option of commenting on the two previous Runes.  When the round is complete, repeat the process for the second and third rounds.  You may wish to play a final round in which the players, in turn, tell what new insights have come to them concerning the issue - and then have one person draw a final Rune as a commentary on those insights.

     Rune Play can be enjoyed by a close-knit group of colleagues or associates working on a project.  Say that you are developing a new product and the process is blocked.  You may want to declare a Rune Play break.  A variation on the Three Runes Spread might prove useful in such a situation: You now (First round), Your Part in the Blockage (second round) and Action Called for (third round).  The game swiftly takes on strategic and therapeutic overtones.  Everyone will learn something, and there will be no lack of humor along the way.

     In addition, this game can profitably be played by two people when a relationship issue calls for clarification.  The number of Runes you choose is up to you.  To keep friction at a minimum - if the situation is particularly sensitive - you may decide not to comment on one another's Runers until play is complete.