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A Beginner's Guide To Using Rune Stones

A Beginner's Guide To Using Rune Stones

Updated July 17, 2023 by Alexandre Baillairge

Have something been bothering you? Do you seek guidance? Do you want to know what the future has planned for you?

For centuries, rune stones have been used as a tool for divination “ a way to seek knowledge of the future. Today, they are used a tool for guidance as they work with your subconscious to answer the questions that nag your mind.

The best part about casting rune stones to seek answers to your pressing questions? You don't need any special skills “ only an open mind.

Believed to have originated from Northern parts of Europe, rune stones are a set of 24 ancient alphabetical symbols. While alphabetic in nature, they are more regarded as symbology “ a more powerful form of communication. It is believed that each individual rune has its own set of meanings that connect experiences, feelings, spirits, objects, and so much more.

Rune stones don't need to be made of stone exactly. While they can be made of any materials, the most popular and attractive ones are made of wood or glass with each rune stone inscribed with a symbol. They are typically kept in a cloth pouch or a box. Your rune stones should also come with a guide of the rune alphabet and symbol meanings.

You can even make your own rune stones by inscribing the alphabet on stones yourself.

Casting Rune Stones

Facing the sun which is on an East-West axis, lay down a white cloth. Focus on your question and cast the stones onto the cloth. Notice that not all of the rune stones have landed right side up; these are the ones be read. The runes that are reversed will also have their own meaning.

Alternatively, you can also use your rune stones for single stone readings. It's simple. Keep all your stones in their pouch.

Clear your mind and focus on the question you want answered. Ask your question and pick a rune stone randomly out of the bag.


The Meaning of Each of the Rune Stone Symbols

Based on The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Divination, here are the meanings of each of the rune stone symbols.


A Rune sacred to Freya, Goddess of fecundity and love.

Right Side

A fulfilment rune of good fortune, material stability, security, wealth. FEOH feeds and nourishes on both the spiritual and material planes.

An indication of something earned or won. “The primal cow, the sow, the fertile originating animals, our common beginning.” It is essential to share good fortune with others. This rune also indicates fertility and harmony.


At a standstill, lack of balance and possibly some form of loss.



A Rune sacred to Thor, God of thunder and strength.

Right Side

A rune of creativity and sexual energy. UR also represents the death of a cycle, out with the old wild ox and in with the new. May indicate a dark period with material loss or the loss of a person but new opportunities will arise from this.

It is indicative of an unpredictable power, tests and greed. Opportunities, sexuality and good luck are the keywords for this rune.


Opportunities that have passed by, possible health problems and a lack of progress in certain areas.



A Rune sacred to Loki, trickster and shape changer.

Right Side

A rune of negative change, contemplation and conflict. Synonymous with the hammer of Thor, this rune represents: trolls, demons, giants and male power. Strength may be found by observing the past and future. As Thor was the Norse God of strength other key meanings of this rune are: security, protection and possibly good news.


Thorn (th) as a thorn bush can indicate dangers of a smaller less significant kind. However reversed this rune can indicate unfavourable news or a sense of feeling vulnerable.



A Rune sacred to Odin, God of Wind and Spirit.

Right Side

A rune of God’s blessing and joy. A time to expect the unexpected, new beginnings and communications, messengers, signals and gifts.

A guarantee of harmony and order. A warning to fortify oneself before attempting to come to the aid of others. “The divine breath, the sacred ash and the world tree.”

As this rune is also representative of Odin himself other meanings associated with this rune are: wisdom, psychic power and aid from someone older.


This rune reversed serves as a warning against trickery or pranks, this is even more true if it involves an older person. A warning against an older person causing trouble or playing tricks and games. Think carefully before accepting any advice.



A Rune sacred to Thor and thunder.

Right Side

A rune of personal development and transformation. This rune is indicative of journeys and travel. The journeys may be of a physical or spiritual nature, but either way will bring about some positive developments. It is also a time of choice and of making the right move to ensure all effort and energy is channelled in the right direction.


This rune reversed is indicative of delays and possibly difficult journeys. It can also mean that there are important lessons that need to be learned.



A Rune sacred to Heimdall, the underworld watcher.

Right Side

A rune of renewed light after a period of darkness or confusion. It is also a warning of a danger to health, possibly in the form of: fever, abscesses, ulcers, physical or mental problems. As a torch this rune also represents creative fire and artistic impulse. it is a shining beacon of hope in the dark.


This rune reversed is indicative of a block on creativity.



A Rune of a sacred mark dedicated to the Gods.

Right Side

A rune of generosity and the giving and receiving of gifts; and with the help of the Gods, kindness and aid to others. It is a gift and a greeting of peace. Partnerships and relationships are blessed.

People unite and relationships move to a deeper level. “The lovers kiss; the bountiful Goddess abundance.” This rune also represents sacrifice and the balance of opposing factions or elements. A remnant of Gyfu gis still sent today to mark the passing of another year.


This rune reversed is indicative of harm to friendship, separations and self centred behaviour.



A Rune sacred to Odin.

Right Side

A rune of material and emotional gain, through diligence. It also indicates comfort and renewed energy. Situations will change for the better.

Peace, balance, and harmony are the keywords with the possibility that wishes will be fulfilled. A time to re-evaluate one’s plans and goals as darkness has given way to light.


This rune reversed is indicative of conflicts and changes that are not positive. It is a warning to anticipate strife in certain situations.



A rune sacred to Heindall the watcher and Mordgud, keeper of the icy bridge to the underworld.

Right Side

A rune that warns of illness. Hagal means hail and is symbolic of uncontrolled and destructive forces. It is a time of upheaval, discord and disruption and general bad luck. There will be setbacks and problems all which need to be endured in order to come through on the other side.


This rune reversed is indicative of uncontrollable events leading to delays.



A Rune sacred to Norns, weavers of fate and Nort, Goddess of night who gives birth to day.

Right Side

A rune of limit, limitation and patience. Keywords include: necessity, need, absence, sadness, tiredness. It is indicative of the hardship of existing on less than enough.

Much hard work and patience is needed to work through the pain and strife, but the experience must be treated as a period of learning in order to overcome difficulty rather than becoming bitter. There is a warning against greed and desire as this will only prove destructive.


This rune reversed warns against hasty decisions and careful thought about any pending commitment.


ISA - IS (I) - ICE

A Rune sacred to intensity, it intensifies any other rune associated with it.

Right Side

The rune of obstacles and mental blocks. It is a barrier stopping or preventing, while warning against proceeding. As a beacon it is a “shining light”, but stillness, patience and sacrifice of the “I” may win the prize.

Other meanings include: coldness between people, lethargy, death end, termination, strong hidden forces and blocks to thought and deed. This rune intensifies the meaning of any other runes associated with it.


This rune reversed is indicative of a coldness which gives rise to conflict and arguments. only by acting positively can the ice be melted.



A Rune sacred to Freya and Frey the bountiful couple.

Right Side

The rune of harvest, fertility and the turning wheel. This rune is symbolic of success, an abundant year and the cycles of nature and life. Projects will succeed although plans cannot be rushed and patience must be observed. Effort reaps its reward.

Other meanings include: the sacred marriage between heaven and earth, thriving crops, generosity of kings and prosperity. “When the harvest comes - celebrate!”.


This rune reversed symbolises a block in nature. Matters come to a head.


EIHWAZ - YR or EOH (el) - YEW

A Rune sacred to Odin, who gathered the dead souls for their journey to Valhalla or the underworld.

Right Side

As with the 13th card of death in the tarot deck, this rune is also symbolic of death, but death in the sense of a cycle of life. It highlights the importance of death in human life as in death, regeneration and rebirth.

This rune is symbolic of the gate to the underworld. Patience is needed to work through a period of stagnation. Old ways will pass giving rise to the new.


This rune reversed symbolises nostalgia and a hankering for the past. It can also represent emotional problems linked to the death of a loved one.



A Rune sacred to Frigg, the “All Mother”.

Right Side

This is a rune of mystery and things not being quite what they seem. It is a time to experience the unexpected and live for the now.

Other meanings include: womb, female fertility. A game that is played between “desire and destiny”. A rune of revelation.


This rune reversed is symbolic of hidden things that are revealed and cast out into the open.



A Rune sacred to Heimdall, the watcher.

Right Side

A Rune symbolic of protection and shelter. Temptation may be put in the way of an individual, but this is to be resisted. Emotions must be contained and pain and strife overcome in order to move forward. Other meanings include: new beginnings, protect what has been worked for, the hand sign to ward off evil, divine aspirations, elk-sedge a plant which hurts anyone who touches it and a strong symbol of protection.


This rune reversed warns of avoiding danger which may be caused by another person.



A Rune sacred to Balder, the beautiful God and the Solar Wheel.

Right Side

A rune of health, wealth and happiness and contact with one’s higher self. Now is the time to use the sun’s energy for regeneration and reveal secrets that are hidden. Other meanings include: creativity, guidance particularly of sailors, spiritual power to “resist disintegration”, the light of the world and positive beneficial magic.


This rune reversed warns of the possibility of carelessness or recklessness leading to ill health or danger.


TEIWAZ- TYR (t) - TRY (God of War)

A Rune sacred to Tyr, Lord of the Heavens and war leader.

Right Side

A rune of bravery and steadfastness in the face of any adversity. New partnerships will produce great things. This is a rune of energy, contentment and passion and it is a much used talisman. Other meanings include: a brave and noble death, self knowledge, faith, victory and success in law and war.


This rune reversed is symbolic of frustrations and quarrels that sap the strength.



A Rune sacred to the Earth Goddess.

Right Side

This is a rune of new birth and new beginnings. Although it can be indicative of an actual birth or marriage it can also refer to personal growth and development and the prosperity of an enterprise. It can indicate the start of something special and to facilitate this, doubts must cleansed before moving forward. Other meanings include: fertility in the bodily sense, beauty and the breasts of the Earth Goddess.


This rune reversed is symbolic of hurdles or problems getting in the way of the birth or start of something. This rune reversed warns of stagnation.



A Rune sacred to Frey, Summer sun and the erect penis.

Right Side

This is a rune of travel and change, possibly of job, career, residence or maybe all three. This rune brings a message from the Gods and rank, pride, happiness and an aid to the restless. It may also indicate spiritual journeys and faith in one’s destiny.


This rune reversed warns of a restlessness and a desire to escape by travelling or moving away from the problem - a passage away from pain.



A Rune sacred to Odin, the “All Father” and Heimdall, the watcher.

Right Side

This is the rune of mankind and all of the attributes which set humans apart. it suggests that the middle path should be sought and followed and it also refers to family matters. Other meanings include: a connection to others, mutual joy intelligence, memory and culture. Also a desire for change.


This rune reversed symbolises a lack of of common sense. A need for solace and isolation, particularly form family.



A Rune sacred to Njord, God of the wealth of the sea.

Right Side

This is the rune of unconscious intuition and mystery. It can be indicative of some levels of psychic ability and the courage to trust in hunches. It can mean success in travel, also gains made at the expense of loss. Other meanings include: the ebb and the flow of the tides, waves, seas and lakes and the power of green growth bursting through the soil.


This rune reversed symbolises stormy waters and emotional turmoil.


INGUZ- ING (ng) - FERTILITY (The God Ing)

A Rune sacred to Frey, Summer sun and consort of Freya.

Right Side

This is a rune of peace and prosperity, also fertility especially male potency. It is symbolic of the erect phallus and fertilising power.

Projects, ideas and even people reach their full potential. Matters come to a head and problems are resolved. The hearth and home are protected.


This rune reversed warns of the need to be more diligent and that progress is being blocked.



A Rune sacred to Heimdall, the watcher.

Right Side

This is a rune of harmonious unexpected success. It is a balance between light and darkness; as night gives way to dawn, this gives way to day and so on. It is a beacon of light bringing forth clarity, success and abundance in life. The time is right to embark upon a new project, but be cautious in the journey forward.


This rune reversed warns of treading carefully and conserving energy.



A Rune sacred to heritage.

Right Side

This is a rune of inheritance and the discarding of traditional well worn ways in order to move forward. It symbolises mental and spiritual heritage, property and old traditions and family values. Other meanings associated with this rune are: the freeing of an individual from a group or clan, fundamental ideas and spiritual values. Although something may have to be given up or lost in order to acquire property or an estate, the wise use of resources is indicated here.


This rune reversed is symbolic of family disputes and break ups, problems with parents and possibly arguments or problems with any inheritances.


THE BLANK STONE - WYRD - ODIN or WYRD - The unknowable - the beginning and the end (FATE)

This rune stone is blank and symbolises something that cannot be known or cannot be controlled and as such fate will decide the outcome.