Monday, April 23, 2012

Runes 301 - Making Your Own Runes 2

As promised, last week, I cut the wood for my Runes.  The tree was in the early stages of blossom, with lots of little white blooms popping out on the branches.  The process began with a cleansing of the saw, using the water I had collected a couple of weeks ago and stored in a glass jar (see Rune 301 - Making Your Own Runes).  The incantation I spoke was in two parts.  First, I expressed gratitude to Freyr for the water.  Then, I requested a sharp blade to cut the wood.  The incantation went like this:

"Thanks to Freyr for the cleansing water.  I am grateful to receive your gift."

After speaking these words, I poured the water over the saw, especially the blade, and laid it on an organic cotton cloth to dry in the sun.  When it was dry, I turned to the tree, held up the saw and proclaimed:

"I believe in the power of Odin to make this saw sharp, not for gain in war, but gain in wisdom from the Runes that will be carved into this fruited wood."
I climbed the tree and cut the branches I had selected earlier as being the best size for the Runes.  They ranged in diameter from 1-2cm.  In addition to cutting the wood for the Runes, I cut an extra branch (a dead one) to use for practice before I start the actual Runes.  I don't want to make any mistakes on the fruit-bearing wood and I felt that using wood from the same tree would give me a better sense of the feel of the wood than using, say, cedar or some other wood.

I sawed off the branches as close to the main artery of the tree as I could.  After the wood was cut, I thanked Freyr for the wood with the following gratitude incantation:

"I am grateful to you, Freyr, for the fertile wood you have provided so that my Runes will carry fruit-bearing power of wisdom within them."

As an extra sign of appreciation, when I cut the smaller branches, bearing the blossoms, from the larger ones that will be used for the Runes, I put them into a vase on my kitchen table, where they are still blooming and leaves are forming.  They give the dining room a completely different feel, making it much more earthy.

This week's goal is to select the best tools for carving the Runes into the branches, which I will discuss when I begin the first practice round.

For now, it is important to remember that this is my process for making Runes and that many exist.  One of the things I like most about this endeavor is that it is very individualized.  In fact, I feel it must be.  If you don't make your Runes in the way that makes sense and feels right to you, you are doing them and yourself a disservice.  You don't have to recite my incantations if they don't feel right to you.  The basic things that you must do if you want to make wooden Rune staves is find a wood that feels right to you, cut it to appropriate lengths and carve the Runes into it.  Throughout this process, please feel free to ask me any questions or clarify things for you that my not be clear.  If you've made your own Runes, please share your experience with us!

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