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MJacobs: Runes, Magick, and #11

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.divination,alt.religion.asatru,alt.pagan
From: (nagasiva)
Subject: MJacobs: Re: Runes, Magick, and #11
Date: 8 Dec 1995 10:54:01 -0800

[from alt.magick: (Matthew Jacobs)]

Paul Davidson Jr ( wrote:
> I made a most exciting connection today while studying my runes.

> Studying my runes today I thought I would be silly and just look at the 
> first 11 runes.  To my amazement, the first 11 runes begin with Fire 
> (Fehu) and end with Ice (Isa).  In the middle, number 6, is Kenaz, 
> representing human controlled elements (torch).  Surrounding Kenaz is 
> 5Raidho= Rite= Sumble= Will and 7Gebo= Sacrifice= Blot= Love.  So we have 
> Magick (human controlled elements) surrounded by Love and Will with Fire 
> and Ice on the extremes.
> It is even broken down much further than this with 2Uruz and 10Nauthiz... 
> yeast and iron.  3Thurisaz and 9Hagalaz become Venom=War God and 
> Salt=Love Goddess.  And finally 4Ansuz and 8Wunjo are Air and Water.
> The first 11 runes become the Macrocosm and then the second 11 become the 
> microcosm!  On one end is 12Jera the living cycle and on the other end 
> 22Ingwaz is the wild hunt and death cycle.  In the middle is 17Tiwaz for 
> Justice and Balance.  13Eihwaz becomes the cosmos and 21Laguz becomes the 
> earth.  14Perthro and 20Mannaz become orlog(universal destiny) and 
> wyrd(personal destiny).  15Elhaz becomes magickal defense and 19Ehwaz 
> becomes magickal offense.  And again the center is surrounded by Love and 
> Will with 16Sowilo= Sky Father= Will and 18Berkana= Earth Mother= Love!
> The last two runes are "intent" runes in my little scheme... 23Dagaz= 
> invoke and 24Othala= banish.

 First, let me see if I have this straight:
#  Rune        Meaning
-- ----------- ---------------------------------
1  Fehu        Fire
2  Uruz        Yeast
3  Thurisaz    Venom= War
4  Ansuz       Air
5  Raidho      Rite
6  Kenaz       Torch (human controlled elements)
7  Gebo        Sacrafice= Blot= Love
8  Wunjo       Water
9  Hagalaz     Salt= Love Goddess
10 Nauthiz     Iron
11 Isa         Ice
12 Jera        Living Cycle
13 Eihwaz      Cosmos
14 Perthro     Orlog (universal destiny)
15 Elhaz       Magickal defense
16 Sowilo      Sky Father= Will
17 Tiwaz       Justice & Balance
18 Berhana     Earth Mother= Love
19 Ehwaz       Magickal Offense
20 Mannaz      wyrd (personal destiny)
21 Laguz       Earth
22 Ingwaz      Hunt and Death Cycle
23 Dagaz       Invoke
24 Othala      Banish

A few things here.  Firstly, I applaud your work, but I have been doing
similar work with the runes numerologically, and I see a few things that
raise my curiosity.  The first one is what magickal basis is there for
justifying the number eleven for division with the use the two conveniently
left out as "intent runes"?  The second thing is that I would like to hear 
where you got your meanings of the runes.  While your definitions work (any 
system such as this is only symbols for subconcious will to chew on, after 
all) I have been using a similar system that is still different.  And it 
fits an interesting numerological pattern for breakdown.  I need to present 
it drawn as the three aettir, as the ancient germanic tribes did; you'll see
why in a moment.

Fehu     Uruz     Thurisaz  Ansuz   Raidho   Kenaz   Gebo   Wunjo
Hagalaz  Nauthiz  Isa       Jera    Perdhro  Eihwaz  Elhaz  Sowilo
Tiwaz    Berkano  Elhaz     Mannaz  Laguz    Ingwaz  Dagaz  Othalaz

This is how it was often written.  Just as the English alphabet is one long
string of letters, their's was three short strings put end to end:  Freyr's
aett (Fehu through Wunjo), Hagal's aett (Hagalaz through Sowilo), and Tyr's
aett (Tiwaz through Othalaz).  One now encounters a problem with history
and whether, and if so, how, the vikings/germanic tribes/whomever used the
runes in divination and magick, but I will ignore such academic arguments. 
I pursue the runes in a modern context as a symbolic tool for the pursuit of

There is no reason that the number 24 should be a bad one.  Sure, it doesn't
fit with the tarot or qabala properly, but most people tend to shy from
combining those two with runes anyway.  So if we stay with twenty-four, we 
find that it divides nicely.  Twenty-four is 1x24, 24x1, 2x12, 12x2, 3x8, 
8x3, 4x6, and 6x4.  The idea for this came from Donald Tyson's _New Magus_,
but he doesn't spend much time on it, leaving the reader to come up with it
on his own.  I'm still working on it, but here's what I have of each of 
these numerological breakdowns so far.

1 set of 24 runes
Taken as a whole, the runes represent the whole of the universe.  Here are
the translations I have been using (Tyson's) and what I believe they mean.

1  Fehu      Cattle: that which is broken; stupid, slavish, slow
2  Uruz      Aurochs (wild cattle): courage, boldness, strength, freedom
3  Thurisaz  Demon: physical destruction, cause of disaster
4  Ansuz     God: Goodness, stern but just, source of luck and happiness
5  Raidho    Journey by Horse: A quest, test of courage and will
6  Kenaz     Torch: the flame that guides; stability, direction, aid
7  Gebo      Gift: something of personal value sacraficed
8  Wunjo     Joy/Glory: blessing (gift) of the gods, merging into the light
9  Hagalaz   Hail: hardship/winter of the soul; involuntary suffering
10 Naudhiz   Need: necessity to survive, defiance of human spirit against fate
11 Isa       Ice: frozenness, changeless, silence, stagnation
12 Jera      Year (Cycle): whirling energy, change,  turn the wheel of fortune
13 Eihwaz    Yew(the wood of good tools): service, dependability, honest virtue
14 Perdhro   Apple: abundance, luxury, pleasure, indulgence
15 Elhaz     Defense: protection against attack
16 Sowilo    Sun: the lightning bolt, and instrument of destruction
17 Tyr       Tyr (Norse War God): help weapon strike true; fortitude
18 Berkano   Birch Twig: healing, health, growth, love
19 Elhaz     Horse: virtues of physical body; grace, speed, strength
20 Mannaz    Mankind: mental virtues; will to an end; intellect, imagination
21 Laguz     Water: The Cup; source of generation, dreams, underworld of soul
22 Ingwaz    Fertility God: phsyical love, procreation; project to full term
23 Dagaz     Day: light, safety, happiness; valued things of spirit
24 Othalaz   Inherited Property: native land; material goods, stability

24 runes
The individual, isolated aspects of the universe.  You may try corresponding
each rune with the positive or negative aspects of each zodiacal sign, 
ending up with a zodiac of light and a zodiac of darkness.  Each rune may
also be aligned with an hour of the day.

2 sets of 12 runes each
These sets are created by dividing the runset as drawn above down the
middle so that there are twelve runes on the left and twelve on the right. 
These can be corresponded to dualities such as male/female, light/dark,
yin/yang, microcosm/macrocosm, and all those others you run across everday
in practically every existing magickal text.

12 sets of 2 runes each
These sets are created by pairing every odd numbered rune with the rune
directly following it (e.g. Fehu/Uruz, Thursaz/Ansuz, etc.)  Something
interesting happens here, which is why I included my magickal definitions of
the runes above.  Take Thurisaz/Ansuz.  It translates as Demon/God. 
Raidho/Kenaz becomes Quest/Guide, Elhaz/Sowilo becomes defense/weapon,
Laguz/Ingwaz become spiritual and physical love.  These binaries are useful
in countermagick, and in pursuits that require balance.

These sets may also be corresponded to zodiacal signs, two hour segments of
the clock, or two hours on opposite sides of the clock with alternating
positive/negative aspects as night and day switch.

3 sets of 8 runes each
This the the classical split, the aettir.  If you can't find literature on
the meanings of the aettir, you're not looking hard enough.

8 sets of 3 runes each
These sets are made by taking vertical columns of the aettir (e.g.
Fehu/Hagalaz/Tiwaz, Uruz/Nauthiz/Berkano, Thurisaz/Isa/Elhaz, etc.)

May be corresponded with the negative and positive aspects of each of the
four classical elements.  Also the seven astrological bodies plus earth
(Mercury, Sun, Moon, Venus, Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, Earth).  The eight notes 
of music (Do, Re, Me, Fa, So, La, Ti, Do).  Chaos Mages may try other
variations of eight that are specific to the eight-rayed star of chaos.

4 sets of 6 runes each
These sets are created by taking two columns out of the aettir at once
(e.g. Fehu/Uruz/Hagalaz/Nauthiz/Tiwaz/Berkano and Thurisaz/Ansuz/Isa/Jera/
Elhaz/Mannaz.)  These four sets may be corresponded to the four basic
elements and all of THOSE correspondences.  Remember Magick 101? 
Elementals, seasons, archangels, elemental colors, magickal tools, senses,
four of the five platonic solids (leaving dodecahedron out for the fifth
elements of spirit/aether), and all those others you should be able to
rattle off at relativistic speeds.

6 sets of 4 runes each
Mathematically, this division is possible.  However, it is not possible to
do so neatly with the aettir lined on top of each other as it has been with
all others, so I have chosen to discard this possible division.

As you can see, the number 24 in no way limits the ways that runes may be
used in magick.  You don't have to pound things to fit the number eleven
with two extraneous runes that don't really go anywhere.  I am not saying
that your pusuit is invalid, indeed I am always excited to hear that someone
has devised yet another way to twist an existing system.  Perhaps I am just
missing the intent you have in leaving out the two final runes.  Maybe it is
a more viable system than what I have presented here.  If so, please tell me
what can be done with it; tell me why it is a better system to use.  Or tell
me what circumstances it functions better in if it isn't better all of the

Merely pursuing knowledge and the wisdom that it brings.  Light and Love.

|  0 ---> 1  |   May the fire of a billion ascending souls   |            |
|            |     burn strong against the dark of night     |  8 ---> 9  |
|    --Amor Vincit Omnia--    |     |
|    --=Matthew  Jacobs=--    |     |
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