Monday, December 5, 2011

The State of the World

All I hear from around the world is bad news, news of corruption and war and violence, of inequality and poverty, of a lack of understanding and acceptance.  I believe the world doesn’t have to be this way.  Because of this, today, I wanted to give the world a Rune.

I asked the Runes, “If I could give the world a Rune, which one would it be?”  The Rune it gave me was Isa.  As soon as I saw the Rune, I knew my question had not been specific enough.  This Rune represents clearly the state of the world today, but I want to give the world a good Rune, a Rune with some positive aspect to it, some hope.  So, I asked how the world can counter the Ice Rune, Isa.  I drew Tiwaz/Teiwaz, the Rune of the god Týr.  This is a better Rune, but I decided one final question was needed.  “What do we do with the Tiwaz?”  Use Nauthiz.  In essence, though it had not been my intention, I ended up with another three-Rune draw with each Rune addressing (in order) the overview, challenge and required action.

The Rune that represents the state of the world today also provides the situation overview – Isa, the Rune of Ice.  I wish I could put a good spin on this draw, but both the new age and traditional explanations for this Rune don’t offer much.  The greatest similarity between the two explanations is the idea of a lack of forward motion, a lack of progress.  Both talk about caution and risk and a lack of awareness of the true situation.  Some people just submit and go along and, those who rise up are met with a backlash and violence.  Finally, the interpretation of this Rune suggests a time of pause.  Maybe the positive side to this is that I see the pause coming with the onset of winter (for those of us in the northern hemisphere).  Perhaps now is the time to plan for the spring when we can come out coordinated, in force and strong.

Then again, maybe this is my resolve and that is why I drew Tiwaz, the Rune of the god Týr (Tiw), who was the only one among all the gods that was brave enough to put his hand in the mouth of the wolf, Fenrir, when the wolf was being bound by the other gods.  Týr sacrificed his right hand to ensure the beast, Fenrir, could not harm the gods.  This fearlessness is what we need now to change the world, but there is something else we must remember.  Týr did not start a war, he did not wreak havoc on anyone, he merely stood up to the problem to make sure that what needed to be done was done.  In fact, traditional associations include justice and self-sacrifice.  More recent definitions link to terms such as perseverance.  Basically, if we expect change to occur in the world, we must be strong.

To change the condition of the world in an effective way, Nauthiz, the Rune of Necessity offers guidance.  Although Nauthiz counsels restraint, it suggests this action to help us make correct decisions in difficult situations.  Perhaps this ties into Isa’s time for pause.  Through consideration and appropriate planning, we can achieve positive change, restore balance and, in some instances, create harmony.

Maybe this draw was for me.  Maybe it’s not a Rune for the world.  Maybe all it shows is my perception of the state of the world.  Whether talking about the state of entire world, my world or any injustice, these three Runes remind me that, if I want to be the change, I must be strong, smart and persevering.  Who’s with me?

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