Rune Divination Methods

After you have made, cleansed and consecrated your runes, you will keep them in your rune bag which will not only serve to protect them, but which you will also use for divining purposes. The listed methods aren't the only ones, but they are the most common and I can say from personal experience that they are very good and quite simple.

What Should You Do Before Divining?

You will need a clean white piece of cloth (of any material) which will be the surface on which you will throw/put your runes. I cleansed and consecrated my cloth at the same time as my rune bag so I would advise you to do the same and that you keep the cloth in your rune bag along with your runes. You will have to lay out your cloth before doing anything with your runes. 

The process of divination itself begins, of course, by asking a question and visualizing it in your mind. If the question doesn't directly concern you but another person, try and imagine the person you are referring to as clearly as possible and call to mind any associations you may have with them. Some may use a photograph of that person and put it in front of them so they can look at it. That is, if that person can't be there at the time of the divination.

But this isn't all. It is necessary to do a few more things before divination. These include:
  • laying out your cloth and preparing your working area so that you can work undisturbed and so that you can concentrate
  • asking a question and visualizing it (you can say it out loud or to yourself; whichever you prefer)
  • shake your rune bag to mix up the runes (take care to keep concentrated on the question and the associations the whole time)
  • once you feel that you have put enough energy and concentration into the whole process, you can begin by taking out the runes from your rune bag according to one of the following methods

The Methods:

Note: all the runes are read with their face up unless emphasized otherwise. In order to interpret them, have a look at the previous post entitled "Runes and Their Meanings". If you decide to include the reversed rune meanings, then leave the runes exactly the way you pulled them out, but if you decide to interpret them according to their traditional (right side up) meanings, then make sure to turn every rune upwards when pulling it out.

1. Using One Rune

This method is used for getting quick and simple answers. You will have to think of a question and then randomly pick out a rune from the rune bag. The answer is then defined by the meaning of the rune which you pulled out.

2. Two Aspects

Two runes are pulled out of the bag; they will represent two sides of a problem. You will have to pull out the rune that governs over the conscious aspect of your personality (the "familiar" world, that which we perceive using our senses) using your right hand, and your left hand for the rune that governs over your unconscious self (chaos/potentials which we cannot perceive using your senses). The meanings of the runes are then defined according to the list in the previously linked post. The right rune will represent the familiar, physical aspect of the problem, while the left will represent the side of the problem which we cannot see at that point in time.

3. The Three Fates

This method is great for interpreting a whole situation and for getting suggestions as to how to act in the given situation. Three runes are taken out of the bag and put side by side facing upwards. The first (left) rune represents the past and that which caused a certain situation. The second rune represents the present and the decision that has to be made. The third (right) rune represents the future and fate, or simply that which is yet to happen.

4. A Direct Answer

Two to three runes are picked out of the bag and are interpreted according to the question that has been asked. The only important thing is that the question has to be very direct.

5. The Course of Time

Three sets of three runes must be pulled out of the bag. The first set of runes (the upper row) represents the past, the second set (the middle one) represents the present and the third set (the lowest) the future. The runes are read from left to right and the rows are, of course, read horizontally.

6. Free Formation

The question that is asked must be divided into "components" and for every sub-question, a separate rune must be picked out of the bag. Let us say, for example, that the main question is "How can I get rid of this negative influence?". This question can be divided into sub-questions which could be something like:
1. Where is this influence coming from?
2. Through who/what is it operating? etc.
There can be more than two sub-questions, but a new rune must be pulled out for each of then until you get a complete answer to the primary question.

7. The Four Quarters

Four runes are placed to from a circle on the four cardinal points. They are interpreted in the following manner: EAST (birth), SOUTH (life), WEST (old age), NORTH (death).

Sometimes, you may come across a combination of two methods which is called "the four quarters", but uses the spread of the cross method (so five runes are used in stead of four). If this is the case, the upper rune (on the north) represents fate and exterior forces which can prove to be challenges for you (but it can also say something about what caused the situation in question). The right rune (in the east) tells us where the situation is heading and how things are changing and how all of this is affecting your thoughts). The lower rune (in the south) represents the main force in the situation which initiates everything and is connected with will and exterior activity (and that which sets it into motion). The left rune (in the west) tells you about your feelings, imagination, love, wellbeing family and may also be an indicator of something that is leaving the scene. The middle rune (the additional one which isn't in the photo) tells you about the final outcome and summarizes all of these forces to tell you where this is all heading.

8. The Pentagram

The runes are placed at the ends of an imaginary pentagram. They are connected according to the element of the point they are on. The upper arm of the pentagram represents the soul (the meaning is clear), the first right arm represents water (emotions) the lower right arm represents fire (the heart and desires), the lower left arm represents earth (the physical body, all that is earthly) and the upper left arm represents air (the mind, your thoughts and ideas).

9. The Cross

Five runes are placed to resemble a Greek cross. The left rune represents and important factor of the past, the middle rune represents the governing element in the present, the upper rune the forces which aid you, the lower rune the forces which are making things harder for you, and the right rune represents a critical element of the future. Also, they are placed in the aforementioned order as they are picked out of the bag.

10. The Fork

This method is used in critical moments of change, and helps to evaluate the importance of the situation. The left rune represents the first possible outcome, the right rune the second possible outcome, and the bottom rune determines it all; it tells you what will happen.

11. The Diamond

It is used for an in-depth understanding of a situation. The left and right runes represent the forces which are affecting the situation, the bottom rune represents the foundation of the situation and the upper rune is the conclusion to it all.

12. Nine Runes

This is the most complicated method, but also my favorite. It is also the most precise technique because it displays the situation, as well as the position of the person in terms of their spiritual path, in detail. Nine runes have to be picked out of the bag without looking. Mix them in your hands a bit while concentrating on your question and throw them on the cloth. The runes which fell facing upwards have to be interpreted first. They represent the present and that which lead to the situation. The closer they are to the center of the cloth, the more important they are, and the further away they are, the more general their meaning is (in the photograph, I used a spiral to depict this distance). The runes which are touching each other or which are very close together are usually connected or affect each other in some way. After this, the runes which fell face down are then turned to face upwards one by one. They represent the future, exterior influences and possible outcomes. After all of this has been done, it is a good idea to pull out one more rune which will either affirm or deny the whole reading.

These would be all the methods I can give to you for now. I hope you will be happy with the results of your readings and that you will find the method which suits you the most. This post marks the end of the series on runes, but I will go on to talk about other divination methods soon enough.

Until next time. Yours,
Witch's Cat

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