crafting magical tools

Tools of the Craft: Runes (Pt. III)

Oh, the beautiful working altar! It is a place of magic, with lots of shiny and smelly things on it which make me feel at home. But to the new witch, it can sometimes seem daunting, and even downright scary to look at - almost as if it came right out of some dark fantasy story.

But there’s nothing to be afraid of. Each object on the altar is merely a tool to help visually direct energy. In witchcraft, every tool has its significance and its own symbolism, and it often helps to understand what makes these tools so important. In this series of articles, I will endeavor to lift the shroud of mystery from these tools and assist in helping you understand what each tool is used for, where it comes from, and why we use it.

Runes, Pt. III - Uruz, the Rune of Strength

Pronunciation: “Oo - rooz”
Meaning: “Aurochs”
God/dess: Thor, Urdl
Gender Concept: Masculine
Element: Earth
Tree: Birch

Uruz is the rune of masculinity and strength. Its translation is “Auroch” which refers to the giant wild oxen that went extinct in Europe in the early 17th century. Like the ox, it reflects strength of body and strength of spirit. It is a rune of freedom and raw power, as well as male sexual potency. It implies a coming challenge leading to a significant change in your life.

In divination, Uruz reminds us about both the strengths and dangers of creativity. It is a rune marking independence of thought and physical health, as well as asserting one’s self. As a rune of healing, it reflects energies that restore and regenerate, casting out the corruption of illness and restoring the body to its original blueprint. In your castings, it may also represent the ability to take responsibility for your actions and your ability to control your aggression.

When reversed, Uruz reflects ill health or weak mental fortitude. There is failure to think clearly, signs of weakness, or possible threats to you or your position.

Cast converse, Uruz means that you have hidden strengths that must be realized. If easy and obvious opportunities appear, don’t leap for them blindly, as they are deceptive and not helpful.

Uruz reminds us that we have the strength within us to realize our dreams, but that in this strength there is responsibility. Strength isn’t something to use as a weapon over others, but as a weapon to stop others from lording over you. Use it to stay focused and keep yourself from being knocked down. Don’t let negativity upset you - master yourself and find the strength to succeed!

Magick

In magic, Uruz is ideal for empowerment spells and male fertility spells. If you feel you’re struggling with something and want to work a spell, carve Uruz into your candles or incorporate it into your cooking (I can see Uruz being particularly useful when cooking proteins and meaty foods).

For male fertility, use Uruz on candles or in food… If you’re a hands on kind of person, you can use oil or lubrication before sex on the shaft or head of the penis to draw Uruz so as to promote duration, passion, and masculinity between the sheets.

In addition, use Uruz in healing spells. If you’re a vapo-rub kind of person, use the cream to draw Uruz before rubbing it into the skin. Same can be done with oils for healing.

Similarly, if you wish to make someone struggle with thinking clearly, or you want to turn a threat back on someone else, use the Uruz reversal.

In Conclusion…

Like the ox, we are capable of great strength if we just set our minds to the purpose. Uruz is the reminder to use that strength to the best of our abilities, but with the wisdom to use it for the right reasons. When I consider this rune, I get a strong sense of raw power - the kind of which reasonably applies to Thor and even to the Morrigan and Lugh. Uruz is both warlike and utilitarian depending upon its use, and is an excellent rune for various magics!

So this is my first attempt at candle making and I think it turned out pretty good. I wanted a big black altar candle to burn during my workings to help filter out all the negative vibes that might find their way into my endeavors. It’s imbued with essential oils for protection. 

Tools of the Craft: Runes (Pt. X)

Oh, the beautiful working altar! It is a place of magic, with lots of shiny and smelly things on it which make me feel at home. But to the new witch, it can sometimes seem daunting, and even downright scary to look at - almost as if it came right out of some dark fantasy story.

But there’s nothing to be afraid of. Each object on the altar is merely a tool to help visually direct energy. In witchcraft, every tool has its significance and its own symbolism, and it often helps to understand what makes these tools so important. In this series of articles, I will endeavor to lift the shroud of mystery from these tools and assist in helping you understand what each tool is used for, where it comes from, and why we use it.

Runes, Pt. X - Hagalaz, the Rune of Disruption

Pronunciation: “Hawr-gah-laaz”
Meaning: “Hail”
God/dess: Urd, Heimdall
Element: Water
Tree: Ash

We all have those moments when we must hear bad news that we don’t want, yet need, to hear. Such news comes at us like a storm, rocking the foundations of what we thought was stable, and forcing us to weather through it or make the best of it, even when ice and rain threaten to pummel us into the ground.

Hagalaz is an indicator of storms on the horizon, both literally and figuratively. When linked to other runes, it marks some sort of limitation or interruption, or even a change in the direction your life is taking. It could also represent suffering or illness in matters of the body, or in matters of the heart it could represent negative influences caused by a third party.

A fully symmetrical rune, Hagalaz has no reverse, but its converse represents those hidden storms that may plague us. Unexpected and hidden threats from the natural world (such as earthquakes or flash floods) could be on the horizon, or tasks that appear simple and easy to accomplish have hidden dangers that you may not be considering. In matters of the heart, perhaps a lover is holding something back.

Magick

Hagalaz is an exceptional rune for spells meant to interfere with or bind another individual’s actions. It’s meant to cause disruption and make it more difficult for that person to do what they need to do. As such, Hagalaz can be drawn or stitched onto poppets, or incorporated into taglocks for curses and hexes.

Meanwhile, it can also be used for weather magic. If an area is being plagued with drought or needs some sort of weather-based influence, incorporate Hagalaz into spells that are meant to draw thunder storms or rain (but be careful not to overdo it)!

In Conclusion…

Life is going to have its challenges. We never learn or grow without facing difficulties that make it seem as if we aren’t going to achieve what we set out to do. Whether those challenges come from nature or from the situations surrounding us, Hagalaz reminds us not to shy away from a challenge, but to face it head-on, confident in the knowledge that this time of struggle is nothing more than a stepping stone that will make your goal all the sweeter when achieved. The more daunting the task, the greater the reward!

When considering Hagalaz in comparison to tarot, it can be linked to the Tower. A card focused on collapsing and destroying what we think we know in order to force us out of our comfort zone for the sake of growth, the message of interference or disruption is the same between rune and card.

When it appears in your casting or spread, it can sometimes be disconcerting, but like any challenge in life, don’t approach in fear. Approach instead with determination and the will to weather the storm!

Blessed Be! )O(

Tools of the Craft: Runes (Pt. IX)

Oh, the beautiful working altar! It is a place of magic, with lots of shiny and smelly things on it which make me feel at home. But to the new witch, it can sometimes seem daunting, and even downright scary to look at - almost as if it came right out of some dark fantasy story.

But there’s nothing to be afraid of. Each object on the altar is merely a tool to help visually direct energy. In witchcraft, every tool has its significance and its own symbolism, and it often helps to understand what makes these tools so important. In this series of articles, I will endeavor to lift the shroud of mystery from these tools and assist in helping you understand what each tool is used for, where it comes from, and why we use it.

Runes, Pt. IX - Wunjo, the Rune of Joy

Pronunciation: “Voon-joh”
Meaning: “Joy”
God/dess: Odin, Frigg
Element: Water
Tree: Ash

One of my personal favorite runes to see in a casting or spread, Wunjo is almost always a positive omen in a reading. It indicates the manifestation of hard work paying off in satisfaction, happiness, and a sense of achievement. It encourages cooperation and companionship so as to share in the joy, and is an indicator to allow its joy to spread into every part of your life.

When reversed, Wunjo is much less a positive omen. It indicates some sort of misunderstanding or stalled ambition that inhibits the rewards of all of that hard work. Those issues need to be cleared up in order to bring Wunjo’s joy back. Similarly, it indicates difficulties in a relationship, or warns against starting a new project based on the situations surrounding your life.

The converse, however, can go either way. Truth that brings joy could be hidden, or the success you seek might only be available through lots of hard work. In matters of love or partnership, it warns that imagined love isn’t what it seems, and that a partnership might be strained as a result of secretive behavior. Rectify the situations and uncover the truth, or work harder, and Wunjo’s joy will return.

Magick

Wunjo is excellent for spells centered on joy, confidence, motivation, and happiness. Sweetening spells are greatly assisted by Wunjo, and as usual, Wunjo can be carved into candles or drawn in order to invoke its energies. Incorporate Wunjo into love spells to bring more happiness into a relationship during times of stress and unhappiness, or draw Wunjo in a doorway to allow only joy and happiness to enter.

The reversal of Wunjo is excellent for both curses and binding spells, as it can prevent joy at its worst or prevent success at its best. Incorporate Wunjo’s reversal into your spells if you want to prevent someone from achieving success or if you want to ensure that someone have a miserable time.

In Conclusion…

As I’ve mentioned, Wunjo is one of my favorite runes to see in a spread. This is largely because it is a huge indicator of how things may be going in one’s life. Wunjo reminds us to work hard for our success and happiness, because true gratification isn’t something that comes easy. At its most potent, the joy that Wunjo can indicate is founded on truth and honesty. After all, joy brought through a lack of truth and honesty is shallow and fleeting. But if it’s got that solid ground, it can be a long lasting and very enriching form of satisfaction. It also encourages us to focus on establishing balance and harmony in our life, while also seeking what is positive and good in the world around us in order to attract good fortune. In terms of Tarot, Wunjo is most closely associated with the World, since the card similarly indicates success, happiness, and good fortune.

Seek out the happiness of Wunjo in your readings, and pay attention to where it lies in relation to the other runes in order to gain insight into the best path toward success. And always be willing to share that success with others!

Blessed Be! )O(