Every month of 2023, I’ll be randomly pulling a card from a Norse rune oracle deck (The Book of Rune Cards: Sacred Play for Self-Discovery by Ralph Blum) to guide my mindfulness about where the ebb and flow of energy is this month. To be honest, I don’t really “believe” in divination. If I could tell the future, I’d be using it to win the lottery! 🤣 But I do think tarot cards, astrology, Myers–Briggs, and other mystical methods can be a reminder and a focus for thinking about where we stand, what we want more of, what we want to leave behind, and who we could become.
Nothing is set in stone, really, and even if it is, stone flows too. 💖
If you want to follow along and get notice for each new card, join my newsletter here.
March ~ Nauthiz
So January’s card was Standstill. February’s card was the “opposite” with Journey. And now March’s randomly pulled card is Nauthiz/Constraint. I feel like we’re all over the place here! I thought we were journeying but now we are stuck in the spider’s web!
Constraint is about need and struggle and pain. It feels very similar to the Hanged Man card in my tarot deck, which I pull all. the. time. To me, it is often a sign of frustration and unfairness. Like, I’m trying to do something here! But I’m stuck and probably also being sucked dry, yuck, whether by the spider whose web I’m flailing in or, in the case of my Greek mythology tarot, I’m Prometheus chained to a rock while vultures eat my immortal liver, a punishment for giving fire to man. Light in the darkness, anyone? Just in time for spring? Yeah, lots of flailing there.
But I love this idea from my rune book: Nauthiz is about the cost of overcoming hardship. Yes, I might hurt. Yes, I might fail. But all the while, I am growing and learning, strengthening myself because of the struggle. The book suggests that during the hungry times of storms, when the fisherwoman is constrained from going to sea, she weaves her nets instead, getting ready…
This spring has been cold and wet, and we can’t even really get into the dirt to weed. We’re stuck! Since half our fence has rotted out, we are spending this time (and too much money!) replacing the broken boards, pictured above in their full mossy, moldering glory. Ah, the price of self-improvement, but a reminder too: the old wood is turning to compost and the new strong boards will hold the web of strings for the spring peas to grow on. 💚
February ~ Raidho
Last month’s card was Isa/Standstill, so it amuses me — and makes me roll my eyes! — that this month’s randomly drawn card is Raidho, which roughly translates as “ride” or Journey. We just had a late-season snowstorm here which brought the city to a standstill for three days! But now I get the ride card?!🤣
By some interpretations, the Journey card is about movement, about choosing a path and taking the first steps. But other interpretations say the rune is also about union/reunion, which I think is interesting. Movement can be for no “reason”, like dancing, or toward something, like a goal. I’ve been very goal oriented lately as I try to break myself out of burnout. But I’ve also started a new hobby: rock painting! You can see some of my rocks in the picture. There is no reason for painting the rocks. Rocks are fine naked! But I like adding a little shine to them.
I plan to set them free once the snow melts, and they can journey to someone else. But I’ll keep some as a reminder that even if I encounter a rocky path, I am still on my way…and I can find some shine in the stone.
Read about each new card by signing up here.
January ~ Isa
The first rune card of 2023 is — appropriately enough for the Northern Hemisphere! — Isa/Standstill which is the card of Ice, That Which Impedes.
This card resonates with me right now because there is a lot in my life that is stuck and “on ice”. That’s why I lit a pretty candle. But the candle was a little dusty, and the wick spat sparks and sooty speckles everywhere! That’s not even a metaphor; you can see the black dots in the wax. 😄
I saw a saying somewhere that’s also resonating: The seed minds neither the light nor the darkness, for it needs both to grow. And I guess that’s where I am at the moment, quietly waiting, biding my time peacefully. It’s hard though, when there’s so much I want to do!
The book I have for these runes says “Trust your own process and watch for signs of spring.”
For now, I shall endeavor to surrender to the restful aspects of winter. And I will remember to carry the serenity of ice into whatever likely chaos I encounter in the future.
Read about each new card by signing up here.