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Rune Book Reviews 1

              Rune Book Reviews 1


Rune Power: The Secret Knowledge of the Wise Ones by Kenneth Meadows

Paperback: 262 pages

Publisher: Element Books Ltd (1996)

Language: English

ISBN: 1-85230-706-4

Kenneth Meadows writes from a heavily shamanistic perspective with a biased perception of the Uthark theory? His failure to credit the originator of the Uthark Theory done by Professor Sigurd Agrell in the 1930s does little to his credibility as a serious author on the runes.  Professor Agrell's work is difficult to obtain outside scholarly circles, hence most folks exposure to the Uthark theory comes from Meadows' work Rune Power. Meadows argues that rather than seeing the runes as a linear progression we should regard them as a circular sequence whose true starting point was deliberately concealed by the ancient rune masters. He offers little evidence to back this theory up but rather focuses on this claimed misalignment of the rune sequencing?

Whilst the back of his book claims:

***This is not just another book on the Runes ( those ancient and mysterious angular symbols which have been inscribed on wood or on stone ) but one which shows them in their original and natural sequence, also revealing their true purpose in serving as a blessing to humanity.  You'll learn how to: 

  1. understand the sources and nature of the Runes
  2. read and write the Runes and create your own set
  3. design Runescripts and Bindrunes
  4. consult the Runes for advice, wisdom and inspiration
  5. use the Runes to help you in your everyday life ***

It's such a pity that Meadows has not bothered to read more noteworthy works of rune scholars such as Magnus Olsen who suggested that the Fužark was  thought to contain: “inherent magical powers[....] the Fužark is  the concentration of the magical powers of all the runes, and to activate these a certain unchangeable order of the runes has to be observed” 

This book is a conglomeration of Uthark runic sequencings, shamanic mix and match nonsense compounded with poorly researched Nordic philosophies. His Yang Yang Runic Wheel analogy sums this up pretty well on pgs 134, do check it out!  The secret knowledge of the wise ones is pure speculative fantasia taken from a borrowed theory no credible rune scholar to date recognises!

*Rating 1 Star


Esoteric Rune Magic by D. Jason Cooper

Paperback: 240 pages

Publisher: Llewellyn Publications (October 1, 1995)

Language: English

ISBN: 1567181740

D. Jason Cooper was born on Dec 9th 1957, in Fort Erie, a small Canadian town but grew up just across the border in Buffalo, New York. He moved to Perth Australia in 1977. Described as a voracious student of Occultism, Paganism and New age philosophy, he heads a small esoteric group called the Companions of the Phoenix.

See: http://www.sunnyway.com/runes/interview.html

Chapter 1 : The Runes

Chapter 2 : The Aettir

Chapter 3 : Meditation

Chapter 4 : Summoning the Power of the Runes

Chapter 5 : Astral Projection: Part One

Chapter 6 : Astral Projection: Part Two

Chapter 7 : Combining the Runes

Chapter 8 : Your Rune place

Chapter 9 : Four Simple Spells

The Elder FurŽark, Further Reading & Index

Cooper makes several non traditional assertions on the fuŽark runes without any basis for them or valid references to back up his claims of alleged modern (made up) correspondences for his esoteric runes? No logical rationale is offered as to how he arrived at his conclusions throughout the book. The system Cooper introduces are decidedly rooted in Unverifiable Personal Gnosis using ceremonial magic rather than Germanic lore. For purposes of true learning this book is of zero value. Cooper's background in Wicca and Thelemic magic may explain the nonsense he has introduced here. Disappointing and unbelievably very poor scholarship.

*Rating 1 Star


Taking Up The Runes: A complete guide to using Runes in Spells, Rituals, Divination and Magic by Diana Paxson

Paperback: 415 pages

Publisher: Weiser Books (April 20, 2005)

Language: English

ISBN: 1578633257

This book is divided into 14 Chapters:
1.   Taking Up the Runes
2.   Fehu and Uruz
3.   Thurisaz and Ansuz
4.  Raidho and Kenaz                                      5.   Gebu and Wunjo
6.   Hagalaz and Nauthiz
7.   Isa and Jera
8.   Eihwaz and Pertho
9.   Elhaz and Sowilo
10. Tiwaz and Berkana
11. Ehwaz and Mannaz
12. Laguz and Inguz
13. Dagaz and Othila
14. Bringing back the runes

My initial response to this submission by Diana Paxson was one of derisive expectations, not really knowing what to expect from a fantasy novelist whose works here it appears are a re-hash of several other authors prior submissions with a bias towards Wicca. This book is systematically written in a self help tutorial style but I am sure that the author is capable of far better work than this submission. I cannot say I agree with her conjectural step by step magical explanations of each rune covered in the 14 Chapters. Suggestions in Chapter One by the author of the book is to get together as a group using "Taking Up the Runes" as a template. Edred Thorsson's concentric design of the runes is also suggested as a guide but I digress that I cannot agree with this as a sound methodology of understanding runes per se let alone Period One Elder Futhark runes. There appears to be strong elements of Thorsson's work here, which from a heathen point of view is too damn reminiscent of experimental ceremonial magic This work is endorsed by The Ring Of Troth and is more suited to wiccan students of the runes as well as those who are eclectic by nature.

*Rating 1 Star
 


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