Ar-Kan Rune-Lag

Ar-Kan Rune-Lag

Sunday 26 February 2017

Rahwhan & Alu-Ula

This post was sparked by a quick reading of an article by Osred in Odin's Lore - The Magick and Symbolism of the Runes (*) which features the mystery of a runic formula etched onto a roe-deer bone found at Caistor-by-Norwich, dated around 425 - 475 CE. I am not going to go into the history of this, which can be found in the article itself, but look at another angle, that of its featuring in a fictional book by Nikolai Tolstoy 'The Coming of the King'.

In this work the runes are Rad-AEsc-Eoh-Haegl-AEsc-Nyd; Tolstoy interprets these as R - ae - hw - ae - n. Raehwhaen. The 'ae' is a single letter represented by the AEsc-Rune. The first point made is that, read from right to left, this reads as naeh (near) hwaer (where) which does not get us far really, at least it does not give clues to the interpretation. Tolstoy goes on to say that Rahwhan is the basis of the strife of the world, meaning perhaps the conflict of opposites, and this same force governs the Taefl game, which features in this section. This struggle ends in 'death' which he sees related to the Nyd-Rune at the end.

Rahwhan influences the conflict of opposites, and perhaps directs it in some way. He goes on to give the following meanings to the runes -

Rad - The Driver of the Wagon. By Iring's Path drives the Chariot of the Bear, Woden's Waen. This is the 'Chariot of the King of Men' that leads the host of the slain towards Valhalla. This chariot wends eastwards to the 'place of death'.

Os - Os is Woden who hangs upon the World Tree (here the Eoh-Rune).

Eoh - The 'windswept tree', Yggdrasil, the World Yew-Tree.

Haegl - 'hail' representing 'elf-shot' and the 'arrow-storm' of battle.

Nyd - That which binds man's wyrd,  death, the ending of all.

However, using his version of the runes in the book the second and fifth rune is not Os but AEsc, though the meaning may still be more or less the same. But Tolstoy uses the AEsc-Rune to start with and then changes to the Os-Rune. This may seem to be an error if it were not a fact that the runic formula could be from the Common Germanic Futhark rather than the Anglo-Frisian Futhork, especially since the Haegl-Rune has a single cross-stroke as opposed to the usual twin cross-stroke of the Anglo-Frisian row.

This is where the mystery comes in since by all accounts at this time in history the Old English Rune Poem runes should have been used, not the Common Germanic Futhark - according, that is, to some historians. I would like to point out that the Horns of Gallehus come from an area of Denmark once inhabited by the Angles - the English - and the runes are of the CGF with rune-postures from the Anglo-Frisian, i.e. both runes feature. Some have claimed that the use of the CGF here, at this early time, suggests that some form of runic alphabet was used at an earlier period here in England. The problem lies, once again, in the 'Anglo-Saxon invasions' theory which makes for later dates, so this type of evidence has to be dismissed because it does not fit in. (**)

We thus have the formula - R - a - hw - h - a -n with these being - Raidho, Ansuz, Aihwas, Hagal, Ansuz, and Nauthiz. The Taefl-board represents the conflict of opposites, Rahwhan being the force that directs that conflict. I would like to look at more meanings of these runes -

Raidho - The Chariot of Ingwe; Ingwe being the force that moves the Chariot, Woden's Waen (Great Bear). Ingwe is here Bootes, the 'Driver of the Chariot'. This happens at the Wheel of the Cosmos, at the area where the northern stars revolve around the Pole Star. This is also the rune of 'right order' of the Rita, that which governs the movement of all things, the rhythm of the cosmos and of nature. This rhythm is governed by the sacrifice, and the supreme sacrifice of Woden upon the Ancient Yew-Tree. Here he is Waendal who is the world-turner, the turner of the world-mill, he who spins the Fire-Whisk, whirling the cosmos into creation. The 'long mile-path' is the Road to Valhalla, the Road of the Dead, the Hel-Waeg. This rune leads the dead hero to the Road to Valhalla along the Milky Way or Iring's Way. This rune is also that of the 'rat' the animal that 'leaves the falling house' after it has left a trail of destruction; it then moves to another host and continues the process again.

Ansuz - Rune of Woden, the Ancestral God, the God of the Dead, the Lord of Valhalla, Leader of the Einheriar - Woden Herian. Woden's rune is placed alongside the two central runes - Aiwhaz and Hagal. Ralph Blum uses this rune as a 'Rune of Loki' which I have always seen as a distortion, yet the rune (as all runes) must have its equal and opposite meaning, and Loki is indeed on the opposite pole to Woden. Maybe there is some reason to see the negative side of Ansuz as Loki the Trickster.

Aihwaz - The Yew Tree, Yggdrasil in this case, the World Tree upon which Woden hang in order to recover the Ancient Runes. This rune is also that of aiw which is the Life-Force, the rune-root giving us our word 'eternity'. This is outside the bounds of time and space, a force that permeates all things and animates all things. This rune is the rune of Eternal Life, of Immortality, and of regeneration, since certain yews regenerate themselves from within as they die off. The Immortals are the Warrior-Heroes who go to Valhalla after their death on earth. But this is also a Rune of Death since the yew-tree is deadly poisonous when eaten.

Hagal - This is not just a rune of destruction, of 'arrow-shot' or 'elf-shot' but a rune of wholeness, of healing, of health. Both equal and opposite meanings apply, as they do for all of the runes. This is a rune of health, but also a rune bringing death and destruction.

Ansuz - as above.

Nauthiz - Rune of Need; this is not just death since it infers 'necessity', that when things go bad it forces change upon us, forces us to get over the problems. It is also the Rune of Friction, the friction of the conflict of opposites, the friction created by the Eternal War of the Goten and the Joten. It is the Sword of Need, wrenched from the Barnstock Oak by Sigmund the Wolsunga, placed there by Woden. The tale of King Arthur pulling the Sword from the Stone is one of the right to kingship, whereas the tale of Sigmund the Wolsunga is different, it is the right of kinship as much as kingship, the right to bear the sword placed there by the High God - Sacral Kingship. This sword passes through the Wolsunga Royal House, it is not the property of a single king, it is the property of the Kinfolk of the Wolsungas, passed down from Sigmund to his son Sigurd, who reforges it when it is broken by Woden. What was given by Woden is taken in death by Woden. The rune is also of 'Friction-Fire' which is kindled when the need is greatest, it is the Flame of Life.

We do not seem to be much nearer to solving the mystery; I have covered this topic many years ago in the first runic work we put out between ourselves in Woden's Folk. The mystery was no nearer solving then, and though I cannot find a copy of this work now I do recall looking into the concept of 'raw' in regard to Rahwhan. We need to turn elsewhere first, and in the runic article Osred recalls this to be linked to regin and ragna in the Norse Lore - the former meaning 'divinely established magical power' and the latter 'invoke magic upon'. If the link is right then this is a Magical Formula to do with death (this and the sheep's bones were found in a burial urn).

It is interesting to note the link to ragna and thus to Ragna-rok, this being the 'invoking of magical power'. When I went through the mystical experience and Wodenic Initiation back in 1997 one of the things that I learned was that this experience was based upon the 'conflict of opposites', like Ragnarok, which ended in their being transcended creating another reality, another way of being, in human terms another Race of Man.

Regin comes from an IE Root *reg- meaning 'to move in a straight line', or 'to direct in a straight line'. 'to lead or to rule'. This gives us the OE riht meaning 'right, 'just', 'straight', and thus our modern word 'right'. Of course, the first rune - Raidho - covers this very meaning. From this root we get terms associated with kingship, ruler-ship, and leadership -

  • realm,
  • regent,
  • regime,
  • regimen,
  • regiment,
  • region,
  • regal,
  • reign,
  • real.

There are also other words stemming from the same idea -

Latin regire meaning 'to lead straight', 'to guide', and 'to rule'.

OHG rih meaning 'king', 'ruler', from which we get the title Rig-Hama.

*reg- tribal king,

Germanic riks meaning 'king',

OE rice - 'realm',
ON riki - 'realm',
OHG richi - 'reich', 'realm',
OE rice - 'strong', 'powerful',
Sanskrit raja/rajan - king.

All of these varied meanings suggest ruler-ship and kingship; the term 'ruler' can also refer to a means of measurement. We can also get certain other words that bring us further to the meaning -

  • reger - 'the movers',
  • erreger - 'the initiators',
  • regiereden - 'the ruling ones',
  • an-regended - 'the inciting ones',
  • rege - 'the active one'.
We have also the German word recke which means 'hero'.

I have mentioned before about the idea of the Straight Road by which other realms of being can be seen; this was the theme used by Tolkien when he declared that the Gods had made the Earth round, and that only the few could see the 'sunken lands' by taking the Straight Path as opposed to the curved path of the world today. I also hinted that perhaps the idea of the 'Flat Earth' was a misunderstanding (in one sense) because it does not refer to the physical earth and to the physical realms but to a different state of consciousness in which the worlds are different. In other words it refers to different dimensions of being.

Perhaps, just perhaps, the idea of 'moving in a straight line' referred to the higher beings (such as kings, shamans, aethlingas etc.) who were able to attain higher states of consciousness, thus seeing into other worlds of being. As 'wise men' they were fit to rule the peoples, the tribe, but this (of course) came to an end as we plunged deeper into the Warg-Age or Kali Yuga.

Thus regin or ragna refer to the magical force that moves in a straight line, the force that influences or even directs the conflict of opposites; it is the power hidden within the Ancient Runes. These ideas must be all linked to the meanings of the Raidho-Rune. We shall now move on to look at the thought I had earlier concerning 'raw'.

German rauh - 'raw',

German rauch - 'rough',

The idea here is something that is rough, raw, primal, and we might consider these to refer to some form of Primal Force or Power. I am here reminded of the very ancient Vedic God, Rudra, who is linked to these same ideas. We can thus link Woden to them too.

The 'straight line' could also represent the World Pillar or Cosmic Pillar, the Sacred Centre. There is also a Latin regula which means - 'a straight piece of wood', 'a rod'. Again, these terms also come from the Raidho-Rune which seems to form the basis of this formula. There is also another IE Root *regw -es which means 'darkness' and from this stems the Greek Erebos which is a place of darkness under the earth. Scientists do not, as yet, know what role Dark Matter or Dark Energy plays in the universe but they do theorise that it makes up most of what we call 'space'.

We can see the conflict of opposites as being the conflict of 'Ice and Fire' represented by the Isa-rune and Ken-rune, and thus it is Rahwhan that directs or influences the interplay of these opposing forces. Ginnungagap is the Primal Void, made up of Niflheim and Muspelheim, the forces of Ice and Fire. It is the conflict of these two forces that causes what we term 'creation', which is not something that happens at some fixed time in the past, but is a continuous process caused by this conflict of Ice and Fire. Ginnungagap is the magically-charged void and we can thus assume that this 'magical force' is Rahwhan which is what influences the other forces.

An interesting point to note is that the Ancient Runes were always drawn as straight lines and never as curves, the curves only coming into being when writing became part of the Germanic world. Runes were carved on wood, so straight lines would perhaps be easier, but the real reason seems to be that they were always meant to be straight lines, taking the straight path, representing the power of regin/ragna.

I am going to suggest that Rahwhan may have been a magical formula which was meant to guide the Woden-born to Valhalla, as suggested earlier in the article. The concept of Valhalla needs to be covered in more detail, which I shall try to do now.

Some  modern scientists, those who concern themselves with consciousness and with such things as 'out-of-body-experience', and 'after-death-experiences' have suggested that what we think on the point of death, and thus what we have thought for some time before death, is how we experience death itself. This seems to make some real sense. In the case of Valhalla we can only see how the Vikings saw it, and that is a place where they went after death, fought and died each day, were resurrected to feast with the Gods, and then fought and died again - over and over - until Ragnarok when they would be resurrected to fight the Last Battle.

Looked at this way it was essential that the brave warriors of this time, and no doubt throughout the history of the Germanic Folk, actually believed wholeheartedly in the concept of Valhalla, an afterlife in which they would be prepared for their next incarnation on Earth. This said, the Warrior-Hero who died in the struggle would be well prepared for his next incarnation; this would go some way in explaining how certain figures in history, heroic figures, have a strong sense of self-destiny, a sense that they have a heroic destiny ahead of them, indeed, a sense that they were born to undertake a higher destiny. This is in fact the driving-force behind their whole life. They live an Archetypal Myth because that is what they are, that is what they were in previous incarnations, and that is what they will be for eternity.

The process thus means that there has to be a belief in an afterlife, a belief in the idea that they will be reborn or 'resurrected' again and again in order to fight the Eternal Struggle. This also explains the concept of Ragna-rok which is not only the end product of this conflict of opposites, but the manifestation of this 'magical force' that causes this conflict of opposites, and which aids the process of the transcendence of these opposites to (re-)create a new cosmos and a new order. It may be that the Rahwhan Formula was the magical force that helped to 'send' the dead to Valhalla, to send the dead along the Straight Path that leads to Valhalla. It must be remembered that the Dead-Ways or Hel-Ways were invariably placed in a straight line upon the earth, the roads being almost always in a straight line.

If I am near the mark here there is a need for more research in this direction, since this is an important concept that must be incorporated into the teachings of Folkish Wodenism. We have seen here in England, and in many other European Nations as well as the rest of the White Nations, how in our time there is a growing youth-movement springing up, manifesting the Will of Woden shown by the dress and methods used in their work. This suggests the resurrection of the Einheriar into the youth in our times.

The idea of Valhalla was replaced by the idea of a 'Heaven' and a 'Hell', so that those who went to heaven stayed there are would not come back. This idea is alien to our Folk, and dangerous too if how we think before death affects us after death. The concept of Valhalla must be instilled into our Folk once again in order to further this cosmic struggle.

The ALU-ULA Magical Power -

Another runic formula that has been found on funeral urns, and thus connected to death, is the ALU or ALU-ULA runic formula. I have covered this in detail before so I will merely state a few points of relevance to this post. The runic formula embodies another magical force rooted in the IE Root *alu- or alw- which has the following meanings, and the following words that stem from this root -

IE Root *al-  to grow, to nourish,
                     to wander,
                     to grind, to mill,

alua (Greek) - 'I am beside myself',

aluot (Latin) - 'To wander aimlessly',

alwanza (Hittite) - 'bewitched',

IE Root *alw- 'To put under a magical spell'.

I see no reason why the word alu/alw cannot stem from most of these roots, even though this is not the usual way it is seen. What is implied is a magical force very much like Rahwhan, and indeed a magical force connected to death and no doubt resurrection. I have recounted the incident at Wayland's Smithy where a 'New Age' woman told me about a vision she had, a vision of a tall, fair warrior. This suggests something connected to the Ancestral Spirits, and here it seems one of these appeared at the Smithy. The words he spoke to her were -


Yes, the formula was repeated three times and this is part of the numerology of this runic galdor. I connected this to the Ancestral Spirits since this was obviously a Saxon Warrior from the past, a warrior who passed into and out of our world to give a message. Meeting the woman at that time, and at that place, was what Carl Jung called a synchronicity, but even more important was the message which I took as a personal message because the woman did not understand the term 'ALU' at all, so I took it upon myself to interpret the message. Below is a section from The Emerald Tablets of Hermes the Atlantean, which if anything should be regarded as an initiated work and not as a written record from such ancient times. I have placed certain sections in bold print so as to make these parts stand out; it is these parts that I shall comment upon.

Hear ye, O man, and list to my voice.
List to the wisdom that gives thee of Death.
When at the end of thy work appointed,
thou may desire to pass from this life,
pass to the plane where the Suns of the Morning
live and have being as Children of Light.

Pass without pain and pass without sorrow
into the plane where is eternal Light.

First lie at rest with thine head to the eastward.
Fold thou thy hands at the Source of thy life (solar plexus).

Place thou thy consciousness in the life seat.
Whirl it and divide to north and to south.

Send thou the one out toward the northward.
Send thou the other out to the south. 

Relax thou their hold upon thy being.
Forth from thy form will thy silver spark fly,
upward and onward to the Sun of the morning,
blending with Light, at one with its source.

There it shall flame till desire shall be created.
Then shall return to a place in a form.

Know ye, O men, that thus pass the great Souls,
changing at will from life unto life. 

Thus ever passes the Avatar,
willing his Death as he wills his own life.

List ye, O man, drink of my wisdom.
Learn ye the secret that is Master of Time.
Learn ye how those ye call Masters are
able to remember the lives of the past.

Great is the secret yet easy to master,
giving to thee the mastery of time.
When upon thee death fast approaches,
fear not but know ye are master of Death.

Relax thy body, resist not with tension. 

Place in thy heart the flame of thy Soul.
Swiftly then sweep it to the seat of the triangle.

Hold for a moment, then move to the goal.
This, thy goal, is the place between thine eyebrows, 

the place where the memory of life must hold sway.
Hold thou thy flame here in thy brain-seat
until the fingers of Death grasp thy Soul. 

Then as thou pass through the state of transition,
surely the memories of life shall pass, too.

Then shalt the past be as one with the present.
Then shall the memory of all be retained.
Free shalt thou be from all retrogression.
The things of the past shall live in today.

The Emerald Tablets of Thoth the Atlantean.

The passage talks about death and the means to gain access to the 'plane' where dwell the Suns of the Morning, those who are the Children of Light. It is clearly stated that it is the Avatar spoken of here, the higher beings or Warriors of Light, who will their death as he 'wills his own life'. This is the same as the Tibetan Buddhist idea of the Boddhisattva who incarnates at will in order to aid mankind.

What is then stated is the means to recall the 'lives of the past'; this is another way of saying that the methods here will enable the Einheriar (Fallen Hero) to awaken the Blood Memory when he resurrects again in the next life. The above tells us how this is to be done at the point of death - this is a method linked to our own ALU-ULA Runic Formula.

The consciousness is placed at the Heart Centre where resides the Lagu-Rune; this consciousness should be the Flame of the Soul, in other words the Initiate should visualise the Sacred Flame of his/her Being at this point, around the heart/solar plexus.

The consciousness is quickly moved downwards to the 'seat of the triangle', i.e. the Hara-Centre two fingers below the belly-button. Then the energy is moved upwards to the Mind's Eye Centre (Third Eye) which is 'between thine eyebrows' and which is where the 'memory of life must hold sway'. The visualisation of the Flame of the Soul (Divine Spark or Litr Goda) at this point should be held until death. This act retains the Blood Memory into the future incarnations.

The part which is not fully clear here, which is important to investigate further, is the movement of the 'Flame' to the 'seat of the triangle', since it is not clear which centre this is. I have placed it at the lower centre because this is an Inverted Triangle, as we have seen it in our own ideas. In doing this we invoke another formula - LUA. This uses all three centres in the formula, which seems to be logical.

This is the Way of the Solar Warrior, the Divine Hero who wills his own death and his own rebirth in a new form, a rebirth into the Eternal Struggle, as outlined by the master - Don Miguel Serrano. The place of these 'Sons of the Morning' ('Morning Star'?) is of course Valhalla! The 'source of thy life' is said to be the Solar Plexus Centre, which is used in the daily exercise designed to pave the way for death. The 'soul' is described as a 'silver spark', this is the Flame of Life or Divine Spark within the Solar Hero - this is the 'Flame of the 'Gods', the 'Gift of the Gods'.

When Hama incarnated at the end of the Golden Age, incarnated as Sheaf-Ing, he came from the Gods after being given a drink from the Three Wells or Three Cauldrons, and thus he incarnated, forgetting who he was in order to move freely amongst men. Rig-Hama is equipped with strength, endurance and wisdom through a draft of the -

jardar magn

svalkaldr saer

sonar dreyri

These are most probably the same as -

urdar magn

svalkaldr saer

sonar dreyri

These are the 'Earth's Strength', the strength of the Well of Wyrd, the 'cool-cold sea' is from the Well of Hvergelmir, and from Son or Mimir's Well - the Well of Memory. This is significant to the arguments above since the Well of Memory lies at the Heart Centre/Solar-Plexus Centre. It is from this centre that the 'Blood Memory' is raised to the Mind's Eye Centre in order to retain this memory into the next incarnation.

It is interesting to note that the words 'ALU' as spoken by the Saxon Warrior at Wayland's Smithy are the runes used to bring the power downwards from the Mind's Eye to Bodn at the Hara-Centre/Root Centre. This itself suggests the movement of the spirit of the warrior from the 'Otherworld' into the Realm of Midgard, the energy moving downwards to the Earth Centre (Midgard). Since the Well of Memory/Blood Memory dwells at the Heart Centre it fits in well to see this as the starting-point as in the Tablets of Hermes, from where it moves downwards to the Hara-Centre, then swiftly upwards to the Mind's Eye Centre - Odroerir.

To sum up, we have a formula which links to our own ideas on the Three Cauldrons, a formula that can be used at the point of death to ensure that the Blood Memory is retained into the next incarnation. This is based upon a Formula LUA derived from the ALU-ULA Formula of the Three Cauldrons or Three Energy-Centres of the body. We have also the Runic Formula RAhwHAN which is a magical force that is behind and directs the Eternal Conflict of Ice and Fire - the Eternal Conflict of Opposites. The first guides the Warrior-Hero on the Road to Valhalla, and the second seems to have a similar role in this process. It might now be appropriate to look again at these runes -

Rad - the Road to Valhalla, the 'long mile-paths' on which the dead journey through Iring's Way (the Milky Way) to reach Valhalla. This is both the 'road', the 'journey' and the Warrior-Hero who makes that journey. This rune represents the 'Journey of the Dead' along the 'Dead-Ways' or 'Straight Tracks' that can be found across the country. It also represents the 'Journey of the Dead' across the waters in the Viking Ship-Burial, where the 'Fire' is kindled, transforming the individual, and returning the Fire to the Water.

Ansuz - Woden as the Ancestral God and Lord of Valhalla; this is the Ancestral Force because the IE Root *ansu- means 'spirit' - these are the Spirits of the Dead Warrior-Heroes. This represents here, as the second rune, the Spirit of the Warrior-Hero who undertakes the journey to Valhalla.

Aihwaz - This rune represents the Yew-Tree, the Tree of Eternal Life and of Resurrection and Regeneration; it is also the Tree of Death. The stave represents the World Tree and in particular the upward-downward movement from the centre to Asgard and Hel. The stave is made up of twin Lagu-Runes which is interesting in that the Lagu-Rune is central to the Three Energy-Centres in Wodenic Lore. The IE Root *aiw- means 'Life-Force', 'Vital Force', 'Vital Energy' and 'Eternity'. Here we see the secret of Valhalla - the Road to the Immortals, to Immortality.

Ansuz - This rune represents the Warrior-Hero who undertakes the journey to Valhalla along the Dead-Way, along the Straight Road which leads to Valhalla. Guided by the Ancestral God, Woden. The 'Straight Road' in a way suggests the Spinal Column through which the energy or 'Life-Force' moves. This 'Life-Force' leaves the body as the 'Silver Spark'.

Nauthiz - This represents 'Death' but it also represents the need to overcome 'Death', to go beyond to Eternal Life in the Halls of Light - Valhalla. This tells us that the 'death' of the 'memory' can be overcome through spiritual exercises at death, but more importantly through the knowledge that the spirit of the Warrior-Hero will pass at death to the Halls of Valhalla. This is also the Need-Fire which is kindled as the 'Cremation-Fire' which is the Fire of Transformation, the fire that transforms the earthly warrior-hero into the Divine Warrior-Hero who then dwells in Valhalla awaiting rebirth in order to continue the Eternal Struggle. (***)

This is why the great Warrior-Heroes were buried with their earthly belongings, because it was believed that they would need them in the next world; they would need them because they retained their essence into the next world, and into the next life. They had recreated their Body of Light (Astral Body) and were thus able to move on to the Otherworld Realms in their own body, and not be absorbed into the 'All' or the 'One'. They remained as individuals, creating the Absolute I  that Miguel Serrano speaks of.

It is not our place to intellectualise, or to argue as to the meaning of 'Valhalla'; we have to believe in Valhalla, to believe that it exists and is the place where we shall go after death. To feast and drink with the Gods and the Warrior-Heroes we knew and struggled with in our lives. This is the core of our religion, the core of Folkish Wodenism. Valhalla is not a point of debate, of scholarly research into what it is, where it is, and why it is. Valhalla is the place we go after a glorious life in the struggle between the Goten and the Joten - it is the training-ground for our next incarnation  on Earth. Believe! - And it will be so! We have willed this life, and we shall will our death! And we shall will the life to come in the same heroic struggle.

Lo, there do I see my Father,
Lo, there do I see my Mother,
Lo, there do I see my Sisters and my Brothers,
Lo, there do I see the line of my people,
Back to the beginning.
Lo, they do call to me, they bid me take my place in the Halls of Valhalla,
Where the brave may live forever!

Hail the Glorious Dead!
Hail the Victorious Dead!

Victory or Valhalla!

(*) 'Odin's Lore - The Magick and Symbolism of the Runes edited by Troy Southgate (ISBN: 978-0-9955677-4-0) available from Black Front Press and no doubt on Amazon. The article is 'An Unsolved Runic Mystery' by Osred.

(**) There is also another theory that the 33-rune row was earlier and, like the Younger Futhark, some runes were dropped out at a later date, leaving 24 runes in this case. We have no evidence of this, though that does not negate the idea since there may be evidence somewhere out there which has also been 'dismissed' because it does not fit in. This is another subject though.

(***) In the article Osred points out that there is an Old English word nidgedal defined in the Bosworth-Toller Dictionary as 'An inevitable parting, the parting of body and soul'. The 'exit' for the soul to leave the body would be the 'hole' at the top of the head, the hole that exists when we are born (to allow the soul to enter). When I use the term 'soul' it is not in the Christian sense of the term but in the sense engendered by the IE Root *sowil- which means 'swift-moving' and also the Sun. The 'Suns of the Morning' would be the sense used.

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