With this reading you will form a “plus” sign with the 5 runes you pick after you cast the on the cloth. The first will be the bottom of the cross and represents the basic influences that underlie the question. The second one is placed to the left of the center position and represents the obstacle to overcome. The third rune is at the top and represents beneficial processes. The fourth is to the right of center and represents the outcome of the question. The last rune is placed at the center and shows all the future influences. Layout looks like the following:
1 – Represents the basic influences that underlie the question.
2 – Represents any obstacles to overcome.
3 – Represents beneficial processes.
4 – Represents the possible outcome.
5 – Shows all future influences on the outcome.
If you wish to record your rune casts I’ve created a a printable recording sheet for the Five Rune Cross Layout rune cast.
File: Five Rune Cross Layout Record Sheet
Filesize: 119.72 kB
Before you begin casting there are a few things that you may want to do to get yourself in the correct frame of mind. In doing readings and castings the one thing that is necessary is that you are comfortable and prepared before you start. Nothing on these pages is absolutely necessary to do a rune reading (except, obviously, a rune set) so if you feel like you’d like to do something different than the way this page suggests, then please do so. You know yourself better than anyone else and what makes you comfortable will only help you in a reading. Okay with that said here are a few suggestions.
Some people say that castings should only be done during the day, outside, with the sun shining. Others will tell you that the proper time to get the best reading would be near midnight when the veil between this world and the “Other World” is at it’s thinnest, therefore getting help from spirits. I’ve even seen ways to calculate what time of the day to do a reading depending on the question you are asking. This is really all up to you. There is no hard evidence to say that one way is better than the other so try a few castings at different times and see which time works best for you.
I mentioned above about the shinning sun. Why would this be a better time than a calm day that’s slightly overcast? Well the reason is that the weather can affect our mood and the one thing that we want is to be in the best frame of mind. If you cast on a day when you’re not in a good mood this can affect the outcome. So you may want to hold off to do a casting until the weather and your mood is perfect.
Something that you may want to consider when you sit down to cast the runes is your surroundings. This can be important because of the surrounding energy fields. You don’t want to cast near power lines where the energy given off by the lines could some into conflict with your own power.
Another thing to look out for is the people around you. You don’t want to have people who are skeptical or doubt what the runes can do. If you have people around you doubting this can come into play with your own feelings about the runes. You may even start to doubt yourself and therefore get a poor or inaccurate reading.
If you are casting outside the set-up is simple. Face the sun, layout your casting cloth and pillow and take a seat on the pillow. On the opposite end of the casting cloth place your mearmots and the question written on a piece of paper, if you’d like. Gather up the runes, think about the question you are asking and then toss the runes in front of you.
If you are casting indoors there are a few possible set-ups that you can do. First find a room where you can layout your casting cloth where nothing will be in the way, and so it’s not bunched up against the sofa or anything like that. If it’s possible set up the cloth so that you can sit facing east or in the direction of the sun at that time of the day. If it’s at night then you can set the cloth up so that you are facing the moon, or to the east to “await” the rising sun. What happens if you can’t lay your casting cloth to face to the sun? Well you can just cast in whichever direction that the cloth fits in the room. Or you can try to layout the cloth so that the longest side of the cloth is parallel with the longest wall in the room. The choice is up to you.
You are now ready to start casting. You have your casting cloth laid out in the setting of your choice, you’re in a surrounding that makes you comfortable and everything is perfect. Now gather your runes and have a seat because it’s time to cast. Layout your runes face-up in front of you and make sure that they are all there. If you have a pouch that you use to carry your runes in place them back in the pouch and mix them up. If you have small rune tiles, or large hands, you can mix the runes up in your hands. Concentrate on your question and toss the runes down on the cloth in front of you. Now you’re going to need to choose the number of runes that you’ll need for the spread that you have chosen. To do this you are only going to use then runes that landed face-up. If, by chance, you do not have enough runes to fill the places in the spread you have chosen you can do a few things. You can re-cast the runes that have landed face down, cast the whole spread over, or leave the places in the spread blank. I suggest that you re-cast the remaining face down runes.
When the runes land on the cloth in front of you, how do you know which runes to pick up? There are a few ways to determine that. You could pick a single spot on the cloth before you cast the runes and then pick up the face-up rune closest to it to fill the first spot in the spread. You would then pick up the next closest rune to that spot for the second place, and so on until you’ve filled all the places in the spread.
Another way to do it is to draw an imaginary line down the center of your casting cloth and pick the rune that lands face-up and closest to the line. Start with the rune that is closest to the line first. If there are two that are about the same distance then pick the rune that is closest to you and the line. After you have filled all the places in your spread the next thing is to read them using the meanings of your runes. Which can be found in the Rune Meanings section.
We see in a few of the sagas the mention of ‘lots’ and the act of ‘casting lots’ for many purposes. On each of the saga pages I had said that it was uncertain if these lots were really runes or something else completely. There is some evidence that these lots may in fact have been runes or pre-runic magic symbols that were carved on branches.
In the first century A.D. the Roman author Tacitus wrote his Germania 10 in which he gives an account of some divinatory practices of ancient Germanic people.
For divination and the casting of lots they have the highest regard. Their procedure in casting lots is always the same. They cut off a branch of a nut-bearing tree and slice it into strips; these they mark with different signs and throw them completely at random onto a white cloth. Then the priest of the state, if the consultation is a public one, or the father of the family if it is private, offers a prayer to the gods, and looking up at the sky picks up three strips, one at a time, and reads their meaning from the signs previously scored on them. If the lots forbid an enterprise, there is no deliberation that day on the matter in question; if they allow it, confirmation by the taking of auspices is required.
The different signs that were scored on the wood could have only been one of a few things. First off it’s possible that they had carved magical symbols onto the strips. If this is the case they may have been the runes being used as magical symbols or actual magical symbols that date to a pre-runic time. We have to take into account a few things here. If the symbols were in fact magical pre-runic symbols then why would we find items, such as swords and rings, from this time period that contain magical inscriptions carved in runes. Not the pre-runic symbols, but the actual rune symbols. However, there’s another side to this coin. If the runes were used for magical inscriptions then why would we see so many variations in different rune sets? If they were used for magic then there would be no need to make changes to the design of the symbols. It would be similar to the symbols used in astronomy, since each symbol stands for something specific, like the sun or the moon; there is no need to change the symbol. So the symbol gets passed from culture to culture and through time unchanged. However, using the runes as a writing system would give reason to why there were changes in the shapes of the runes.
There is one other possibility that could lead us to believe the symbols carved were rune shapes. This possibility is that the runes were used for both magical purposes as well as for writing. The magical inscriptions were simply oral commands carved onto an item to give the power of the command to the item it was being carved on. This seems to be the more likely explanation. The runes used as a system of writing would allow someone to add magical inscriptions to something without having to know a separate list of magic symbols.
With all that said is it safe to assume that the terms ‘casting lots’ and ‘lots’ referred to the runes in the sagas? Well without any solid proof the answer would be no, we can’t say for certain. However, the possibility of this happening is greater than the possibility of it not happening. At least that’s what I am lead to believe, still you should try to decide that for yourself.