Runes - the ancient Teutonic Mystical Alphabet. More than just letters. Working with these symbols can do more than just grow your vocabulary. These powerful symbols, and sounds are a Spiritual and Physical method for survival, and are as relevant today as when Odin first discovered them. Using Runes in modern day life can help bring about inner change, both with the symbols, as well as the sounds of Runes.
We are spiritual beings in a psychical body, and change happens from the inside out. Most modern day people are living their lives, reacting. Allowing the outside world to influence their inner world. The runes have lessons they can teach us, by bringing the energy within out. By helping us use the inner self to influence the outer world. Teaching us valuable lessons, for life on Midgard, as well as for interacting with the universe.
In his book on Rune Shamanism, Michael Denney brings up the concept that Rune sounds are life force energy vibrations that exist independently in the universe. He goes on to say that these seed sounds are continuously creating and maintain (or destroying and transforming) everything in existence. And that by chanting and meditating on these sounds, the Rune practitioner aligns him/her self with these energies and can use them for effecting change in their internal, as well as, external realities. I want to follow through on this hypothesis of Denney in this article, as I have found from personal experience for it to be true in some form.
It is no coincidence that the Elder Futhark Rune Alphabet is in the order it is in, even for those who prefer to use the Uthark theory, this stands true. The Futhark does not follow any other ancient alphabet sequence, as would be expected if they were just copying a sequence of symbols to enable writing down of speech. No the Runes have an order, and that order has a purpose.
While some scholars believe the Runes were created to write out speech, but there is others who believe from various finds that this may have a different origin. And if e are to believe as per the texts that Odin discovered the Runs, and not created them, then these Sounds and Symbols were pre-existing in the universal landscape. That the Rune sounds predate their symbols, and were past down by word of mouth is very likely. Go back to the point above about them being discovered by Odin, and in Odin's own words:"I know that I hung on a windy tree
nine long nights,
wounded with a spear, dedicated to Odin,
myself to myself,
on that tree of which no man knows from where its roots run.
No bread did they give me nor a drink from a horn,
downwards I peered;
I took up the runes,
screaming I took them,
then I fell back from there" Words of Odin (Havamal)
And once Odin had discovered the Runes, he gained a certain enlightenment. Certain Knowledge. And using this knowledge made him one of the most powerful Gods within the Nine Worlds. Even to become head of the Gods, taking the age old place of Tyr, the ancient Sky God.
So consider this, perhaps within this all, not only the Runes themselves hold knowledge and wisdom, but that the order of the Runes denotes some form of lesson, a tribal initiation rite, so to speak. There is a lot of conjecture in this statement, but lets continue down this theory, and see where we come to.
The Elder Futhark is a sequence of the Runes, divided into three equal parts of eight. Commonly known as Aett, or Eight.
The Odnic division of the Cosmos is also divided into three. Wodan, Will and Weoh (Odin, Villi and Ve) The brothers who formed to worlds. In his book, Denney consider that perhaps the Runes will given to the Germanic tribes as a form of sacred Teutonic rite of initiation into adulthood. And when we look into the depth of each rune, and the division of the eight, this could very well be. And whether we choose to go with this presumption, or not, it is hard to deny the fact that the Runes have a lesson in each, and by working through these runes, one by one, we begin a process of transformation, and with it, learning lessons from within.
Perhaps the Runes were initially used as sounds, teaching the initiates the basics of their culture, survival skills, and spirituality by working through the sequence of the runes and the divisions of eight. As as with most initiation rites, this was a secret process, handed down to each initiate when they were at the right age. After all, Rune means Secret or Mystery.
Using this hypothesis, the division into three of the runes holds a secret to the growth and strategies we can use in modern day life as well.
The First Eight - giving the initiate the power (will), resources and strategy necessary for survival.
If the first eight runes gives the initiate the power of survival on the physical plane, the second eight can be used to give the tribal hunter/ initiate maturity on the emotional, mental and psychological plane.
And lastly, the third eight of runes provided the initiate with the means of spiritual evolution towards the power of the Gods. A form of enlightenment.
The lessons learned in each rune, and the use of the sound of each rune have a direct impact on the Physical world, Emotional World and Spiritual world of the human existence.
I have found a few authors who have also hinted towards similar hypotheses, not as detailed as Denney gets into, but along the lines of initiation and growth.
From a personal perceptive, I find the Runes have much in similarity with modern Life Coaching. And when I am able to work with clients who are open to working with the runes, I find their personal growth to be more profound, and embedded.
The runes are not soft teachers. They bring us into hard lessons. But if we are willing, and hold the course, we will find ourselves growing in the physical world in terms of provision and strength, but also in the emotional and spiritual realms.