"God/Mouth is the chieftain / of all speech, / the mainstay of wisdom / and a comfort to the wise ones, / for every noble warrior /
hope and happiness"
(Anglo-Saxon Rune Poem)
"Ase is the olden father / and Asgardhr´s chieftain / and the leader of Valholl"
(Old Icelandic Rune Poem)
" I know a fourth, / so that if bonds bind my limbs, / I can go free. / Fetters spring from my feet, / and bonds from my hands"
Ansuz is the rune by which the first of Odin´s powers and root of his being are manifested. The rune-name means "god"; the Anglo-Saxon form is mouth, showing the side of Odin´s being which is lord of poetry and keeper of Odhroerir, the mead of inspiration. Ansuz is the stave of opening in every way, as described in the Havamal above. Ansuz opens the subconscious to receive and transmit artistic inspiration; it opens all lines of communication, earthly and magickal alike, and releases locks and blockages of energy. This stave embodies the soft and cunning passing of air, as opposed to the forcible piercing of thurisaz - Odin´s wit instead of Thor´s strength.
As the rune of air, an element which blends both manly and womanly qualities,
it shows Odin´s endless power of changing to fit the world around him
and disguising himself as needed, as well as his hermaphroditic nature. It also
shows his endless, restless wandering in search of new knowledge and his work
of learning, integrating new wisdom, and teaching it in turn to those who can
Ansuz is the rune which rules the power of galdr-magick: the might of the spoken and chanted word and of the breath of life which Odin breathed into Askr (ash) and Embla (elm), the first humans. This breath, ond, is the actual spirit, analogous to the Hebrew ruach which means both soul and breath. As Lord of the Winds, Odin is himself the embodiment of this idea of Spirit and of all the magical might within, as his title Galdrfadhir, faother of magickal songs, shows. The highest mastery of the magickal breath is, of course, the magickal songs which melds the ecstasy of poetic inspiration with the guidance of power. In the shaper´s trance, one has reached a state in which one can receive the truths fo the hidden thoughts of the world (collective unconscious) also implied by the nature of Mimir´s Well and transmuted them into forms which show their might in the deepest layers of the hearers´ minds. This is the gift of Odin through the rune Ansuz, the gift of the mead Odhroerir, one of the three great roots of Odin´s might.
As well as embodying Odin´s powers of inspiration and thought, the rune
ansuz also shows the side of Odin´s being which is the Lord of the Wild
Hunt, the leader of the dead. As the passing of the soul is often felt as a
breath of wind, the ancient Germanic people also sensed the nearness of restless
ghosts in the stormy autumn and winter nights, knowing the fury from which this
god takes his name in the rage of the wild winds. It is thought by most that
this is Odin´s oldest shape: leader of the horde of rushing ghosts and
embodiment of the might of madness which is shown through his followers as both
poetic inspiration and berserker rage. The rune ansuz is the rune of Odin as
the Lord of Life and Death alike; of wrath, wisdom and mighty words; of the
godly melding of greatness and madness.
The rune ansuz is used for creative inspiration and reception of Odin´s might. As arune which works on the deepest layers of the mind, it brings the ability for magnetic, even hypnotic speech - a power that can be used for weal and woe alike.
Ansuz unblocks the channels of self-expression; it can be used to overcome blockages of body and mind caused by fear or trauma and to deal with bindings and restraints of every kind. Through meditation on ansuz and the side of Odin´s being which is the Lord of Death, you can come to a fuller understanding of death and thereby overcome the terrors it holds.
Ansuz is used in all forms of receptive psychic ability and magick. It ought to be called into the vitki´s own sphere before any act of galdr-magick.A good stone to use with ansuz is lapis lazuli, which has traditionally been seen as a link between the human and the godly. The name lazuli is derived from the Arabic word for heaven, fitting for a rune so close to the lord of the wind and sky. Lapis is said to be a mental and spiritual opener, aiding one in receiving both the messages of the hidden mind and the inspiration of the gods.
Rainbow colours painted the skies as you reach the top of a sacred mountain, out of breath, but feeling truly high. A new day is about to start and stirrings of Nature could be heard and felt in all directions, Heights Above and Depths Below inclusive. The wind that plays with your hair is invigorating, and you take the position of the five-pointed star to greet the new day, and breath deeply in and out. Everything feels fresh and new, vital and energetic. I blow a kiss to the skies. Blessed be the Sylphs, Breezes and Light Winds of the Four Quarters!
And as the sun starts to shine, a song comes to your lips, spinning from within. When Inspiration comes, all one has to do is to follow Her happy trail to see the wonders She for sure will unveil:
By the Wings of my Desire,
I´m the Energy of Thoughts that Inspire
I´m a Weaver of Words that Sing
Songs spinning deep from Within
As story-teller of times past, and a lover of ancient lore
I bring Old Magicks back to life
Preferably in cyberforms!
Then you hear hooves thunder the valley down below. You look down in the direction
of the noise and see horses and riders, a large number of them, of all sexes
and ages. So many, wild and free, followed by their assorted barking hounds.
Their crazy ride continus, and to your amazement the riders seem to pass by
all obstacles, go through rocks and resurface on the other side unscathed, jump
over the trunk of a fallen tree or a fence with extreme skill... as if they
could cross over matter.
Your breath catches. Of course these riders can cross over and pass through matter! These are the Ladies and Lords of the Wild Hunt, the march of the dead and the ancestors who have yet to find rest and thus walk over the land. Soon the riders charge in the direction of the hill you stand upon and finally you can get the first glimpse of their leader. You see a tall hooded man in a dark blue cloak riding ahead the Hunters, his voice mingling with the voice of the winds and the barking of the red-eyed hounds.
A growing feeling of awe, anticipation, apprehension and wonder takes hold of you: for the first time you meet up face to face with the overwhelming powers of Life and Death, Divine Inspiration and the touch of Madness that are manifestations of Odin. Thus you feel the Call sing in your blood, and for a moment the desire to follow the Hunt overwhelms you.
There is a problem though. The Wild Hunt commanded by Odin is the Race of the
restless spirits of the departed. It is madness to follow them... unless you
decide to join them and die to the Living World as well.
The weigh of this realisation strikes you hard. All the elation felt at sunrise, the vitality that filled you is gone. But was it really? If Odin is the Lord of Life and Death, early morning you did feel His might as the Divine Awakener and Inspirer, as now you are experiencing a bit of His darker side. Wanderer in search of wisdom, many times in disguise the greatest of the Norse gods roams alone throughout the land, guided by the search for knowledge and the desire to share this very knowledge in all levels and spheres with those He finds worthy.
But not that many He finds to share the wisdom so acquired, and this is why
perhaps Odin´s oldest form is of the Wandering Shaman who begs for a listening
ear, an affectionate hand, or perhaps the blessing of a shelter for the night.
This is the reason why he comes many times into our lives as the Stranger Who
All Knows and who might bestow upon us the Gifts of Everlasting Wisdom, if only
we accept the Him and treat Him well first. The Spirit must always be known
and acknowledged by us before S/He can make Her/HimSelf known. Hot tears roll
down your cheeks as you contemplate the extent of Odin´s quest, which
mirrors so much your own.
The Wild Hunt sweeps down to claim you, but at this very moment you shout in trust and dare the name of the rune Ansuz. The shout brings with it the experience that life and death are the two sides of the same coin, but for now you choose the power of being alive and not to be overtaken by berserker madness. You tap into the power of the Winds of Inspiration to go on with your own life here and now.
And the Wild Hunt pass by, the ghosts howl in excitement around you, but you
feel strangely energized and safe.The dark madness of the hunt for a moment
possessed you, but the chant of the rune name that comes out of your mouth is
the a song of praise and faith in life. You know where your place is, and it
is not amongst the Riders of the Hunt for the time being. It will be perhaps
one day in the future.
In time, you return to the hill, and stop short on your feet. Odin arrived there first!
However, He has changed. Instead of the Old Shaman, He is the Magician and Wise One, the one who has seen much and has kept alight the Torch of the Mysteries to share in all spheres.
"Enjoyed the ride?", He asks and you know He knows the question is
a rhetorical one.
"Was hard", you reply with the sincerity He was used to.
But the smile of the Wondrous Stranger who was known to you as no other is a sight to behold, and for this smile you would face all Wild Hunts in all worlds. And more.
You are the endless Inspiration for the Great Work
You are inspired by Life´s Mysteries and communicate effectively in all levels and spheres
In Freedom and Fortitude of Spirit you are conceived
You liberate the resources within and without wisely
And words you sing of the treasures without and within
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