Witch Wednesdays Podcast Episode 23 - Sigils and Runes

Witch Wednesdays Podcast Episode 23 - Sigils and Runes

Episode 23 can be found here and on YouTube here.

S: you are listening to episode 23 sigils and runes. so we decided to group these together because they often get confused, but they are not the same thing. 

T: they are not they quite different but we also don't have much to say on either topic because neither of us use them really.

S: but we can give you the background. We will start with runes then and then go into why signals are not the same thing. so runes come from the first century Germanic languages in Europe and they are the characters of several different alphabets from this time period. And it's rooted in Norse culture and mythology. so as Christianity spread throughout Europe rune characters were gradually replaced with the Latin letters that we use in today's alphabet. but rune characters never completely disappeared and they were revived in the 20th century along with the resurfacing of many spiritual practices like witchcraft. the complete history of the runes is not exactly exactly known, because a lot of how they are used now relies completely on the intention of the user. so there's a lot of variation in the meanings of the various symbols. So runes Are used similar to tarot, so they're a means of divination so like tarot each card has like a traditional if you're using the rider Waite deck each card has a traditional meaning but beyond that your base meeting is further open to interpretation based on you know the question and the user and what else they see in the cards are feeling at that time, and runes are similar they all have like a basic meaning but the reader is going to infer more from them based on what the intention is what the question is. 

So runes come in is that most sets come with 24 stones in and there they can be also be like wood like slices or chunks or plastic pieces and they have the runes engraved on them and usually come with a blank stone. There are some sets that have a variation of symbols but they are generally in this 24 because these Symbols are based on what's called the elder Futhark alphabet from the second to the eighth century CE and the eighth century it was replaced by the younger futhark that has less symbols but when you use runes in divination is the elder futhark alphabet that's being used.

T: but unlike Tarot they're not all the same like the symbols that are most commonly used are the same but like she said there's sometimes 24 there's sometimes more or less thrown in there usually there's 24 but I didn't wanna say they're not quite like tarot as in you're not gonna get a set that's exactly the same whether it's wood or plastic or metal or rock.

S: yes yes when you do get a set it should include a booklet of what they mean and if you so the other option is to make them yourself, so that is the more traditional way to add them because then it's in tune with Your own magic but I think it's perfectly fine to to purchase them as a set. because they make there's some beautiful sets out there. it's just like the same as any other tools that you get if you're gonna get your oracle decks or crystals or Tarot cards or whatever you want to put your own energy on those and it would be the same way. but if you do want to make them there are a lot of online resources that will give you the general alphabet to start with and has like the interpretations of each of those like most common symbols.

T: and don't be afraid to buy a set as you work on yours because if you're going to work on them extensively, it's going to take time to Find the perfect stones or carve exactly how you want them and also don't be afraid of like knicks or scratches or little imperfections because that make them that makes them or yours. but at the same time if you're like me or steph it's gonna take you awhile because you want to as close to perfect as possible of course

S: so how would you use runes in your practice? like we said it can be used both as a divination tool and in spell work so, each of the runes has a specific meaning like you said and you can use them for any sort of like magical workings or for divination. so if you want to use them for divination you use them similar to a Tarot card and the reason you can, you can absolutely have both if runes and Tarot card speak to you and your practice of divination, you can use both. Runes tend to be for more specific questions where as tarot can give you a general reading on a certain aspect of your life. Runes are also based on the materials we told you that they can be made out of, they are clearly an earth element so if you feel very connected to the earth and work with in your practice, you might find that you work better with the runes then you do a tarot cards in terms of divination 

T: I would say they're slightly more in you can get more in-depth answers than like the pendulum which we had previously talked about but yeah they don't go quite as into the story of your life as tarot

S: yes so how you would actually go about using them. they should be cleansed before each use the same way that you cleanse crystals or a tarot deck. you can put them in moonlight or run them through incense smoke we talked about different cleansing methods. and then the rules are what is traditionally known as casted, you cast runes. You hold them and shake them or if you keep them in a little bag, you can mix them up in the bag and then while focusing on your specific questions, you Pour them onto a cloth on a flat surface. so from here on there's a lot of various ways to choose them and read them for beginners it's best to just start by like hand picking one rune out of your site don't look at them obviously but just reach in and grab which one is calling to you. instead of you know the casting a whole bunch of them across the cloth, but as you get a little more in tune with your runes, get a little better at the readings, they are they have various like spreads online that you can look into you that are similar to Tarot spreads really have they have a past present future spread just like tarot that you can read them and cast them. and they will give you guidance on your question or whatever it is that you're ruminating on.

T: I know a lot of people in the first getting started they tend to keep the runes in a nice cloth bag on or near the altar and then they can just reach in a grab one.

S: Exactly so for using them in spell work runes are considered good for protection. so you can also use runes to cast protection spells and you can use the rune symbols throughout your practice if there's a certain symbol that calls you or is reflective of a certain point that you're in in your life and that symbol really calls do you speak to you in your magical practice you can incorporate that into the rest of your workings and same way that you would Sigils

so let's jump in to sigils and why they are not the same thing. but we definitely understand why it can be confusing because when you some sigils that you would draw look exactly like those sort of symbols that are on the rune stones so I completely understand why The confusion exists. but the sigil is an intention that you condense into a single glyph. so they're incredibly useful because they're coded with your unique magical purpose and they can be deciphered only by you. so they are especially good for witches who are not out of the broom closet yet because you are the only one that knows what that sigil means. you can draw it on anything and nobody's going to know that you are practicing witch.

there are a ton of ways once you have designed a sigil which will get into it in a minute of how to actually activate it and use it, and you can draw them into the bottom of the pie crust before baking so it's very easy to use adults in cooking in kitchen witchcraft. So it's very useful because then we can carve it into firewood or candles before you burn them so if you are big on candles in your witchcraft if you have a sigil that you're using for a money spell let's say that you created a drawing that you could also use a color candle that's associated with money like we talked about and carve that sigil into it just to make your intention even stronger. you can paint it the schedule on rocks and bury them or set them out at decoration on your altar. and you can have jewelry created in that shape or stick it on the back of the jewelry like there's a lot of possibilities of how you can use it.

T: yeah it's very very very versatile and having said that steph and I don't use them a lot I still use Sigils just because they are so versatile like I just don't use them exclusively or as often as other things in my practice but they are very versatile.

S: I would say that I don't use them as much because I am not artistically inclined. I'm just I've never been great at sort of like the artsy side like my handwriting is atrocious, like I don't really like painting and drawing and like things like that and it's just kind of a creative method of drawing it but I'm not into.

so before you can use it in your magical practice we should probably tell you how you can create your own sigil. so there are there's no like single method that Has to be you so you just have to experiment to find what works for you. you may want to Google search think it could be very useful to you, google search into circle grids and saturn grids. In the Circle grid the alphabet is written out and in the Saturn grade numbers are written out and you spell out the word like let's say you're it's money or protection and there's a certain way that you would start and then follow the letters around like the circle or the numbers associated to the letters around the Saturn grid and it kind of guides you in how to create that sigil either method they end up looking similar so it's kind of interesting if you never looked into those just to see how it works.

 but you could also just completely create them from scratch. so what you would do is just writing down your intentions that any intention, your protection or money are big ones. but you were just right general write down the word protection in it then from there you kind of want to use the letters to condense it down into one single drawing. A good way to do that is to remove Any of the vowels or any repeating letters so it gets shorter and shorter and you can simplify the letters by breaking them down into like similar shapes lines of into different lines or curves and then you can arrange the different shapes sort of make them connect together and try to fit them into one single glyph of its ends up being kind of like a weird little like blob but just keep trying until you find something that you like, just keep rearranging it and that's why it's kind of tough for me personally to make sigils because my brain just doesn't really work that way. if I do make a sigil I use one of the grid methods that we talked about.

but they can be incredibly useful in because there's so personal and that's like one of the hallmarks of witchcraft is just make it your own. that's like one of the ways that you can be the most personal in your practice.

in order to activate it it's usually enough just to draw it and to infuse your intention into it as you're drawing it but also the act of destroying it also creates an activation, so you want to kind of think about how you can, in order to activate it, how you can change it so what I mean is like in baking in the piecrust that changes as it gets baked. and The same like if you were to draw a sigil in steam in the shower as like it steams up again, it disappears so you kind of want to think about that like burning it would be the same way as that if you don't once it's burnt then your intention is activated.

so if you do use these methods where you destroy them it can also be helpful to include your sigil in your book of shadows or grimoire if you're keeping one of those, it's a good way to write those down so if you want to use them in the future and track which ones were seemingly successful for you that's a good way of keeping track of all of those.

T: and let me said they're so versatile and they're so personal but you can definitely use the same sigil again if you find one that really works like, protection I have one that I'm using the protection it's never not been effective for me so it's not like I'm not gonna use it ever again because I need to make a whole new sigil.

S: Right now so yes we are I do not often use sigils are certain ones they will use in cooking but that's pretty much it and runes are one method of divination that I really don't use because I feel like I understand tarot and oracle decks better than I do runes. I don't have a set of rules but they are beautiful 

T: I would love to know more about Runes, I just recently read a book on runes just trying to learn more and it was like a foreign language to me honestly like it was a really well written book and I really enjoyed it but I do not understand.

S: Yeah, completely different Language and but if you are interested in a sort of just dipping your toes in divination in general then runes can be a really good way to start, there are way less things to memorize and learn there are with tarot so you don't feel particularly drawn to Tarot or don't want to learn all of the different Tarot cards I totally understand then runes might works a lot better for you. I would think that they work better for people who are a little more creatively inclined than we are, if you're a little more like messy and artistic in your witchcraft and you might be drawn to runes and also sigils more than we are 

that is all we have for you this week, please let us know on Instagram or's and email if you use either of these in your practice we would love to see any photos that you have of yours.

T: so I am trying not to buy all the things that I talk about on the show and I am like oo runes, even though I don't use them I could get a pretty set... 

S: we will see you next week

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