Rune Study : Kenaz

Kenaz Torch

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.

If we imagine our lives as a wandering through unknown mysterious darkness, Kenaz is the light of knowledge we learn to weild along our path. We can illuminate things unknown, things feared, with the light of our conscious awareness that was cultivated with Thurisaz and Ansuz. Kenaz is the exploration of truth, the expression of knowledge to further our journey.

The Gaelic word ken (meaning ‘to know’) is actually derived from the Old Norse verb kenna meaning ‘to know, perceive, or to recognize’.(Reference 1 and 2 : You’ll have to scroll down to ken and kenna respectively) This speaks to the rune’s energy. Kenaz is the knowledge we carry with us, which helps us to distinguish truth from fallacy. It is the drive to know what is real and what is illusion. It is the light in the darkness, the clarity that knowledge brings to unfamiliar situations.

Kenaz can be artistic expression of our own personal truth, our experiences told through our own perspective, honestly shared from our hearts. Kenaz can open us if we are experiencing a creative blockage, and can help us if we need to know truthful imformation in relation to a tricky or confusing situation. I am truth-seeker. I am light in the darkness. I am Kenaz.

Lyrics: (source)
Kauna riv i nattevind
kovnar ei av anden din.
Isen smeltar av ditt ljos
kauna røyner bleike spor.
Kauna siv i løyndom inn
lysar opp i auge skin.
Elden rensar hugen min
Kaun, logen brenn!


Kauna tears the nightwind
withers not in your breath.
The ice melts from your light
Kauna shows faint tracks.
Kauna enters secretly
lights up the eyes.
The fire cleanses my mind
Torch, blazing burns!

(NOTE: last line translated by myself. On the source page it was incomplete, and I used this online ON to English dictionary. Super helpful! I found the verb loga, meaning to blaze, which I assume is conjugated to the word in the song logen; the word brenn I think is also conjugated from brenna meaning [to] burn or [to] be on fire.)

Runelore, Runes