Everything You Need to Know to Begin Working With Runes
The enigmatic nature of the runes is undeniable. In fact, the English word “rune” comes to us from the Norse word runa, which means “a secret,” or “to whisper.” As symbols, the runes mean little to the untrained eye, yet the magical energies they activate can be used for positive, impactful change in your everyday life. But what are runes, exactly?
On the surface level, runes are the characters in a writing system used by the ancient Germanic peoples of Europe. But unlike our modern letters, the runic symbols had been used for magical purposes long before they were fashioned into an alphabet. This is known from runic inscriptions found on ancient artifacts as well as Germanic myth and lore handed down over the centuries. Indeed, those who work with the runes today are taking part in an age-old magical tradition established by our Northern European pagan ancestors.
In Runes for Beginners, best-selling author Lisa Chamberlain shines the light on these ancient symbols, showing you how to discover and utilize their unique magical energies. With both an eye toward tradition and a multicultural spirit, Lisa combines an appreciation for the Germanic roots of the runes with a more eclectic Neopagan approach. Unlike many other books on the topic, Runes for Beginners is completely accessible to those with no experience in Northern European magical traditions, yet it doesn’t ignore those traditions altogether. You will emerge from this guide with a basic understanding of the runes’ role in ancient Germanic paganism, as well as a solid foundation of knowledge to build your own runic practice, regardless of your religious or spiritual path.
Foundations in Runic Magic and Divination
The runes represent various aspects of the human experience of the Universe—both tangible and intangible. Each runic symbol embodies a natural force, or type of energy, which the rune worker can attune to and then manipulate in various ways. Runes can be sent out into the Universe to manifest a magical goal, or they can be used to consult with the unseen realms about a situation at hand. In Runes for Beginners, you’ll learn all you need to know to start working with runes, including:
- The history of the runes and their role within the framework of the Germanic magical worldview
- The origins of runic wisdom in Norse mythology
- An overview of the Elder Futhark, the oldest-known runic alphabet and most widely used rune system in contemporary Neopaganism
- Basic techniques of rune magic, including rune scripts, bind runes, and creating runic talismans
- How to make your own runes
- Instructions for traditional rune-casting as well as contemporary rune spreads
- Tips for successful divination
- The divinatory meanings and magical uses of each rune in the Elder Futhark
- A suggested reading list for further exploring the runes and the magical and spiritual traditions of the ancient Germanic peoples
- Detailed tables of correspondence for a handy condensed magical and divinatory guide
By the end of this guide, you will have a working knowledge of the runes that will enable you to use them with confidence in magic and divination. However, when it comes to truly mastering the runes, the importance of time and practice can’t be emphasized enough. Indeed, working with runes can truly become a lifelong journey, but Runes for Beginners is an excellent first step along the way.