The exchange of gifts can bring us much satisfaction, if the exchange is a balanced one, and we feel we have received somethings of equal value to what we gave. The Old Norse culture had a social construct based on this rune: hospitality. One would have a space set aside for travelers or those in need of shelter. One would never know when a guest would arrive, without the technology we have today. Guests would just show up, and expect to be treated with respect, fed, and housed until they moved on. People would have extra beds or rooms set aside for guests. This was a societal expectation, and was enforced by their laws. Everyone would be glad to have a guest as it was an opportunity to get news from abroad, hear new stories, and practice the art of hospitality. People would want to please the guest by giving them good accommodation, because they never knew when the time would come that a member of their own family would be in the same position as the guest, and need someone to take care of them.
Kenaz : Torch
I like looking at the runes in the context of the inner journey, or shamanic pathway. This lends a more personal feeling to each rune, and allows us to easily apply the runic concepts (which can sometimes be very esoteric) to our lives and to ourselves.
In that context, Kenaz can represent the seeker. The light in the dark, that guides us along our way. The inspiration to seek the truth, and understand mystery. Kenaz is the fire that has been harnessed, the creative forced now ready to be used.
Raidho : Wagon; Journey; Transportation
Raidho, to me, represents the spiraling journey and ordered movement of the Universe. When we tap into the lessons Raidho has to teach, we discover the order in the chaos of this experience. Raidho takes us on the journey to our center, to our core, and outwards once again. Raidho is the wagon in which we partake of the long ride. This rune can refer to a journey, movement in our lives, either the inner journey, or a physical change in surroundings.
Ansuz, Ansur : Áss (Aesir, Divine Ones,); Mouth of Odin
Ansuz is representative of divine inspiration, and manifestation through breath or speech. I really love Tyriel’s take on this rune. (Check it out here.) The creation of our thoughts is something we as beings have the capacity to do. Many of us do this subconsciously. Every moment, we create our thoughts. A lesson of Ansuz, is to bring that creative force into our conscious mind, and use that force to create our hearts desires.