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Quacks, Four Thieves And Today’s Pandemic
By Dikki-Jo Mullen
Have you ever wondered why medical doctors are sometimes called “quacks”? During these troubled times while valiant health care workers are putting themselves at risk to help the rest of us survive this modern day plague, the Covid 19 or Coronavirus, that nickname is likely to evoke outrage. Originally though it was an affectionate term, dating from the Middle Ages. That’s when previous plagues struck. Doctors wore costumes which eerily reflect today’s PPE (personal protection equipment). The bird like beaks incorporated into early face masks reminded patients of ducks. Dr. Quacks were specialists who treated patients suffering from life threatening highly contagious illnesses which really had no cure, much like the current situation. Yet, the Quacks would move among the afflicted and remain well in the face of The Plague. Part of the secret is believed to be the unique combination of herbs which were stuffed into the “beaks”. Small air holes filtered the “miasma” or contaminated air of the viruses, etc. which took the lives of so many. This plague doctor invention is believed to have been adapted from the cleverness of Four Thieves. Some say the Thieves appeared in Spain, other sources say France. Their story, like many anecdotes during troubled times, has several versions. Even the century is debated. The Thieves were reputed to have pursued their calling from the 1400’s – 1600’s. The band appeared to be immune from the sickness which claimed so many. While victims were dead or dying the Thieves would merrily pillage and loot the valuables. There was almost a supernatural quality to their luck for many years. Eventually they were caught in the act. When taken before a judge to answer for their crimes the Thieves were asked about the secret of their ability to avoid getting sick. The wily criminals offered the information in exchange for mercy. They were sentenced to be burned alive. Some sources say the court set them free, commuting their sentences entirely. Other accounts state that they were granted the mercy of a quick death by hanging instead of the agony of death by fire. The secret these characters shared involved herbs. There are several versions. Some describe a vinegar, others a concoction of oils. The Four Thieves covered themselves in the mixture and wore face masks either soaked in the vinegar or saturated with the oil. Masks served as disguises and to offered further protection from the miasma, as the contagious air was called. Today practitioners of the mystic arts will sometimes use Four Thieves Vinegar or Oil in rituals for protection against thievery or psychic attack. However, many do feel it has potential for life saving protection against contagious viruses, bacteria, germs, etc. Here are suggestions passed down through the ages.
Four Thieves Vinegar
Four Thieves Vinegar can be used for protection against illness, personal protection, and banishing, and for cursing your enemies.
Recipes will vary but the base is vinegar. White vinegar, apple cider or red wine vinegar all work well. Add to your vinegar of choice the following ingredients:
Garlic
Salt
Pepper – black or red
Basil
Sage
Lavender
Mint
Mustard seeds
Mix your ingredients into the vinegar and pour it into a bottle or jar; seal it and leave in a dark place for three or four weeks. You can then either leave all the herbs in the liquid or strain it into a new bottle.
Here is an easier and more specific vinegar recipe. 2 TBSP dried thyme. 2 TBSP dried rosemary. 2 TBSP dried sage. 2 TBSP dried lavender. 2 TBSP dried mint. 4-8 cloves garlic (minced, optional) 4 cups organic apple cider vinegar including the “mother” of the vinegar.
Four Thieves Oil
Here is a blend of oils. Add these to a carrier oil such as olive or safflower oil.
Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus Radiata, and Rosemary.

The Astrological Gardener
By Dikki-Jo Mullen

Whether it is just having a few plants in the window of an apartment in the city or acres of gardens in the country, nurturing plants and connecting with the Earth afresh has become a favorite 21st century hobby. Gardening offers peace and pleasure to people of all ages during these often hectic and tension times. It is easy to feel bewildered by the intriguing array of choices when visiting a greenhouse to select plants. Geraniums might do well for one friend, while another favors ferns or begonias. Should you start a cactus garden or splurge on a bonsai tree? Zodiacal rulerships for plants, both medicinal and ornamental, have been a part of astrological traditions for centuries. Your own birth sign (the familiar Sun sign) is a wonderful place to begin when designing a garden to bring a wholesome, earthy peace into your life. By analyzing which plants are compatible with your nature, you can assemble a really outstanding collection of greenery, whether the space available for the project is large or small.
Aries
As a fire sign, you must remember to water your plants regularly. Also they can wither if you give them too much sunlight. You will enjoy the extra physical activity that gardening requires. Experiment with a cactus garden combined with a candle or rock garden. For an indoor garden, using a grow light can work well. Pepper plants, tulips, mustard, radishes, poppies, bay trees and aloes are plants you can have success with.
Taurus
Plants respond almost magically to your touch. Some of the most gifted master gardeners are Taureans. Your garden could even produce enough surplus to sell as a supplement your income. You have the legendary green thumb and can grow almost anything, but some especially good choices include corn, wheat, columbine, myrtle, spinach, iris, daisies and forget-me-nots. Look into an edible landscape that is also visually pleasing.
Gemini
Unless your natal chart has some earth and water sign emphasis, you might be challenged in getting plants to thrive. Your patience can wear thin with the slow pace of gardening and the time consuming effort it takes. If it is just too much for you, try assembling silk arrangements or dried flowers accented with feathers. Plants that can grow well for you include woodbine, meadow sweet, birch trees, yarrow, tansy, lilacs and roses. Planting a butterfly garden can bring novelty and happiness your way, as butterflies have a link to your birth sign.
Cancer
You love swamps and lush water plants. Take care not to over water or over fertilize your garden. Try all types of lilies (water lily, lily of the valley, tiger lily, etc.), water plants of all kinds, white roses, weeping willow trees (the long strings of leaves provide a nice veil to hide behind, when you want to dream or read). Also mushrooms, pumpkins and melons will flourish for you. Take along a slip from a plant that grew in a home from your past when moving to a new dwelling, you are sentimental about your plants.
Leo
For you it is an exotic and dramatic garden, with splashes of brilliant color. Do not crowd too many plants into a small space though and be sure to water them enough. Sunflowers, marigolds, mint, parsley, fennel, citrus trees, dill, olive trees and daffodils are excellent choices for your garden. You would enjoy an elevated garden, placed to attract attention on a small hill or pedestal. You would like to add beautiful hanging baskets, wind chimes or a decorative flag or windsock too.
Virgo
As an Earth sign, you have a natural aptitude for horticulture. Study medicinal herbs and experiment with the goal of making your own home remedies. Assembling herbal tea blends, poultices, etc. to enhance health will appeal to you. Popular table vegetables such as carrots, squash, celery, lettuce will also thrive for you. Valerian, lavender and chicory are other excellent choices. You might want to try beekeeping in conjunction with gardening.
Libra
You treasure plants for their beauty, fragrance and other aesthetic qualities. The beauty of a formal garden would delight you. If you have the time and space, try to copy a floral clock, maze or rose garden from historical references. Beautifully kept parks will draw you, you will enjoy wandering through them as a mild form of exercise. Plants to select for your apartment or small patio garden include roses, thyme, violets, pansies, apricot or chestnut trees, bleeding hearts, strawberries, primroses and cowslips.
Scorpio
Your plants tend to be hardy survivors, weathering freezes and droughts well. Gardens in your care are very fertile too and you can have extra produce to sell or offer to friends. Try bonsai gardening. The twisted and mysterious dwarf trees harmonize with Scorpio. Other great choices include orchids, geraniums, lobelia, beans, magnolia, lichens, tomatoes, blackthorn and witch hazel trees.
Sagittarius
You seldom think of purchasing plants, they seem to find you; perhaps as a gift from a friend or picked up as an afterthought at the supermarket. Sturdy greenery that will flourish independent of personal attention will be your favorite. You would like to have vines trailing over the door or even covering the whole house, plants on the front porch and foreign or exotic plants will attract you too. Some good choices are linden trees, hyssop, ginseng, cinnamon trees, dandelions, chervil and jasmine. Include plants to offer your pets. How about growing some catnip for a favorite feline or grass for a dog to chew?

Capricorn
Massive and gnarled trees, especially pines and oaks, ravaged and marked by time and the seasons, will attract you. Purchase a live Christmas tree in a container to plant outdoors after the holiday is over. You would enjoy visiting a stand of virgin timber, perhaps a redwood forest in the Western United States, or historic forests in Europe. Plants made famous in stories, poems and songs attract you too. Consider holly, ivy, thistles, flax, sienna, cypress, sage and wintergreen for your garden.
Aquarius
Exotic, mutated or grafted plants are linked to your sign. Purchase a batch of x-rayed seeds to plant, you’ll be thrilled by their eccentric growth and appearance. Imported and unusual plants will thrive for you, perhaps defying their usual limits regarding climate. If anyone can grow a magnolia in Minneapolis, a coconut palm in Chicago or a birch tree in Key West, it’s you. Air plants of all kinds, spikenard, dragonwort, rowan tree, crocus and begonias are all good choices for your garden.
Pisces
You have an empathy with fragile, fussy plants which require constant care.
A fountain, fish pond or other water features as a center piece for your garden and statues of fairies, angels or St. Francis to invoke a spiritual and mystical presence would also appeal. You can often bring nearly dead plants back to life by talking to them, a gift you share with gardeners born under Scorpio, your fellow water sign. Rubber trees, orchids, African violets, wildflowers in general, mosses, gardenias, mimosa, frangipani, hops and ferns should all do well for you. So will all night blooming plants. Consider planting an all white moon garden to wander in after sunset.
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“The touch of the wind for pardon, the kiss of the Sun for mirth,
We are nearer God’s heart in a garden than in anyplace else on Earth.”
(a traditional garden poem)

Try this as a daily affirmation, a large group is working with this prayer and it has been very effective in drawing wellness and light into all challenges and difficulties.

Healing and Increasingly
Better Health
Be in Me and around Me.
Wellness in my body
Wellness in my home
Wellness in my thoughts
Wellness in my feelings
Wellness in my relationships
Wellness in my actions
Wellness in my work
Wellness in my leisure
Wellness in my life
Wellness in my spirit

So Be It!

The Aries New Moon in 2020
of Fire and A Zest For Life
By Dikki-Jo Mullen
Every New Moon marks a fresh cycle, setting the pace for the next 4 weeks or so. Perhaps this is especially true of the annual New Moon in Aries. It is the first lunation of springtime at the beginning of the zodiac. The Moon was the first time keeper, even today most calendars will mark New and Full Moon days.
On March 24, 2020 at 5:28 am EDT the Moon will be new at 4 degrees Aries 12’, close to a conjunction with Chiron at 5 degrees of Aries and a semi-sextile to Uranus at 4 degrees of Taurus. The great luminaries, the celestial lights, the Sun and Moon, are always conjunct at a New Moon, creating an intensity of focus. The Sabian symbol for this New Moon reads “A triangle with wings”. It suggests creative transformation, the goal of moving toward the light, developing loyalties, values and skills. Seeking a real vision of the future, its keynote is “zeal”. It is separating from a conjunction with the fixed star Difda. This is a yellow star located in the Whale’s tail, it has a Saturn-Mercury- Mars nature, according to Ptolemy and Alvidas, great astrologers of old. The interpretation is loss that is keenly felt, compulsory change, a pioneer spirit and outbursts of temper. Chiron’s influence accents education and an active mentality. The Uranus influence promises surprises in the schedule, new entertainment, the good use of electronics and technology. There could be some good films and programs streaming on the television or internet.
Hand write your wish list during the 8 hours following the New Moon, keep it a secret and watch how your wishes might manifest as the Moon waxes toward Full. The wish can be used as a book mark, or kept in a drawer or journal, etc. Focus on initiatives, a fresh outlook and following sudden inspirations. What seeds are you planting in your life now? They will be your harvest later in the year. Now the dark months of the year have passed with the coming of spring. The world grows warmer, there is an awakening. A deep sleep is over, there is growth to bring new blossoms, then fruits. Forces of nature are astir. There are new planes of time and space expanding. Is magic afoot?

The Ingress on the Heels Of The Evil Virus
Spring Equinox, 2020 – The Earliest Spring In Over 100 Years!
By Dikki-Jo Mullen

Spring, 2020 begins on March 19 at 11:50 pm EDT, earlier than usual, as 2020 is Leap Year. An Ingress is an event chart calculated for the exact moment when each new season, at an equinox or solstice, begins. This chart reveals the flow of events during the season to come. The Ingress Charts are calculated for the Sun’s entry into each cardinal sign (Aries for Spring, Cancer for Summer, Libra for Autumn and Capricorn for winter). I used Washington, DC as the location. As the locale of the Nation’s Capitol it is a good reference point for influential events throughout the USA).
In looking at this chart, it is a strong bundle pattern with all of the luminaries and planets below the horizon. Intensity, pressure and hidden factors are hinted at. It is a rare trapped chart too, with all of the placements between the North and South Nodes. This shows a situation that has its own life, it will be hard to get control of things in general. Fate is a factor at work in a trapped chart. The 8th house North Node affects non – earned income. This reveals that many who are unable to get to work might receive money for necessities from employers or the government. The 8th house Node also shows the medical research taking place to make an anti Coronavirus vaccine. The 2nd house relates to money and cash flow. It is loaded with the many Capricorn influences. The impact on the economy will be profound. Mars and Jupiter are exactly conjunct. This is The President’s aspect. It shows the frequent news conferences about the virus and also news about the upcoming election as factors. The Aquarius Moon points to the efforts people are making to help each other and the growing spirit of togetherness in crisis. That Moon sign also accents the importance of social media and technology. There is some concern about the Internet holding up with increased usage, with many working from home. Mercury in Pisces in the 3rd house, along with the Moon, shows the concern over schools. Many schools for students of all ages are closing for extended periods of time as the spring equinox approaches. Neptune, the Sun and Chiron are in the 4th house. This shows the mandate about staying at home to prevent the spreading of the virus. The Neptune influence describes seclusion and “social distancing”. Also faith and spirituality at home can be a focus for many. Neptune rules alcohol and drugs though and the news shows many are stocking up on various pills and booze as the spring approaches. Venus in the 6th house shows love and concern for pets. I was at the pet store on the eve of the equinox to get a replacement light for my aquarium and was shocked by the long lines of people hoarding bags and bags of dog and cat food, filling large shopping carts. The companionship of pets can be a comfort for many during the season to come. The Venus influence hints that the healing qualities of music and color or art could be effective in aiding mental, emotional and physical wellness. Uranus in the 6th house describes the suddenness of the changes in health conditions, medical care and daily routine occurring. With Scorpio rising the season ahead promise to be transformative, with issues of life, death and survival at hand. Values and priorities are going through a metamorphosis. Hold on, “This too shall pass”. My feeling is that the virus will eventually just suddenly disappear, as quickly as it struck. The strong 4th house shows the end of the matter. Neptune, the ruler of the 4th house Pisces cusp, is placed in the 4th house. It might be the winter before everything normalizes though.
Data Table – Spring Equinox, 2020
March 19, 2020 at 11:50 pm EDT
Tropical Placidus Cusps Washington, DC 38N53: 77W02
Sun at 00 Aries 00’ – 4th house
Moon at 13 Aquarius 33 – 3rd house
Mercury at 2 Pisces 36’ – 3rd house
Venus at 15 Taurus – 6th house
Mars at 22 Capricorn 35’ – 2nd house
Jupiter at 22 Capricorn 46’ – 2nd house
Saturn at 29 Capricorn 50 – 2nd house
Uranus at 4 Taurus 32’ – 6th house
Neptune at 18 Pisces 50’ – 4th house
Pluto at 24 Capricorn 40’ – 2nd house
North Moon Node – 4 Cancer 30’ – 8th house
(South Node – 4 Capricorn 30’ – 8th house)
Chiron 2 – Pisces 36’ – 3rd house
Ascendant (Rising Sign) is 24 Scorpio 51’

A Magical Leap
Leap Year Day Lore and Legends
February 29

By Dikki-Jo Mullen

“Keep time with a leap now and then” was among the humor, art and poetry that celebrated this unique day in another leap year two centuries ago. It came from the 1820 (a Leap Year) edition of “The Farmer’s Almanac”. 2020, in addition to being the subject of speculation about being an important turning point in time by The Mayan Calendar and other sources, is also Leap Year. February 29, Leap Day, the rarest of days, is tacked on to the end of Valentine’s month. It makes some hearts will rise and others sink, confused and disoriented. Perhaps you’ve not seen it coming when out and about away from your calendar and date book. Yesterday was February 28 and tomorrow is March 1, but what’s in between? Many electronic calendars and perpetual date books miss it totally. This complicates the issue further.
Some of us might arrive for an appointment a day early. Those who are scrambling to meet a March 1 deadline can suddenly be gifted with an extra day. The 24 hour grace period can be used to tie up loose ends or just to rest and procrastinate before the onset of the new month. Of all the delights and frustrations the 29th of February can bring perhaps the souls born on February 29 can experience the most extreme feelings. This is the most infrequent of birthdays. Perhaps that’s why a mystical, nonconformist kind of life path is often followed. Mother Ann Lee, who founded the Shakers, was a leaper or leapling, as leap year babies are called; but then so was Aileen Wuornos, Florida’s notorious serial killer. Leapers must cherish each birthday, remembering that ‘less is more’, for they can only celebrate once every four years. That why they borrow February 28 or March 1 as a birthday once in a while.
The fixed star Skaat in Pisces is close enough to impact Leap Day astrologically. A 4th magnitude star in the leg of the Water Bearer, its keywords are intuitive, nervous, visionary and illusionary. In the first decanate of Pisces, this shows a double Neptune, a strong water rulership.
The relevant Sabian symbol for Leap Day is “An aviator in the clouds”, the keyword is observation and brings the gift of superior perspective. An exploratory and otherworldly quality is present. In the Tarot The High Priestess is linked to Leap Day, further indicating depth, mysterious wisdom and hidden messages.
To keep the calendar in synch an entire day every four years is just a bit too much, so occasionally Leap Year is skipped. In 1700, 1800 and 1900 there were no Leap Days added to the calendar in order to keep the record straight. However in 2000 the 29th of February appeared again. Leap Day is unique, it just can’t be anything other than an extraordinary day.
In antique shops sometimes vintage postcards greeting Leap Days from the early 20th Century can be found. There was also a Leap Year Waltz written. A popular film “Leap Year”, starring Amy Adams was released in 2010. Set in Ireland, the plot revolved around the longtime custom of celebrating Leap Day as Bachelor’s Day. It was the only time when a lady could rightfully propose marriage to a gentleman. In earlier times it was considered a very fortunate day to agree to a proposal for singles of either gender. However if a bachelor did want to refuse he had to gift the rejected lady with a new silk dress to get off the hook.
Plan to savor and celebrate this Leap Day. An intercalculatory calendar day, it was gifted to the mini month of February. Do you welcome it or tend to trip over it? Either way it’s there if there is hesitation take a leap of faith and accept it as a gift.
With all of this hassle can’t we skip Leap Day? The answer is absolutely not! Except for the Chinese Calendar and a few other alternatives such as the Hebrew Calendar, or Native American Medicine Wheels, the calendar used by most of the world today is solar based. It is oriented toward Earth’s trek around the Sun. There is a glitch. We have a neat and tidy 365 day calendar, but the Earth’s orbital time is actually 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 45.51 seconds. Almost 6 hours over 4 years adds up to nearly a whole day. That’s why we must include an extra day sometimes to stay in synch with the solar system. The road to this realization has been a surprisingly bumpy one. The arrangement of days that make up our familiar and beloved calendars came about after centuries of valiant and off target attempts to keep track of time.
The ancient Egyptians managed with 12 months of 30 days followed by 5 feast days, a vacation, at the end of the year when everyone celebrated. By 238 BC, in the time of Ptolemy III, it became obvious that an extra feast day would have to be added every 4th year. This wasn’t acceptable, since the Egyptians worked according to the seasons of agriculture. If the calendar wasn’t adjusted it could be midsummer and a freeze would arrive. Romulus, the first King of Rome, devised a system of 10 lunar months in the 8th Century BC. Since the Moon’s cycle isn’t consistent, the 10 month calendar would need even more time for feasting allowed to keep up.
Another Roman, Numa Pompilus, shortened some months and used the left over days to create January and February. This year was too short so he added an intercalendary 27 day cycle called Mercedonious. This leap month was supposed to be added in every other year. However, the criminal minds of the officials in charge of things misused it. The bad guys extended terms of political office or changed debt collection dates among other sleazy activities, until eventually Mercedonius just vanished.
When Julius Caesar came to power in 47 BC the calendar said it was January, but Mother Nature indicated autumn harvest season. Caesar did a really bright thing, he called in a top notch astrologer for help. A 90 day fix was added. Ever since 46 BC has been called The Year Of Confusion. It had 445 days. However the calendar was back in tune with the seasons. The next year a nice, neat 365 day calendar with a leap day added every 4th year was implemented. This is the famous Julian Calendar. For a long time this seemed fine. However do you remember that extra 1/4 or so day? By 1582 it added up to 15 days and the seasons were getting askew again. A great Italian astrologer, Aloysius Lilius, came to the rescue. He designed a new calendar, the one we use today. Since this happened when Pope Gregory was in power, it was named the Gregorian calendar. We call it the New Style Calendar and it is the one we use today. The Julian Calendar is The Old Style Calendar. The Julian Calendar was still in used in some places through the early 20th Century.
To keep the calendar accurate every time the year ends in 00 we skip Leap Year. That’s unless the 00 year is divisible by 4 with no remainder. That’s why 2000 was a Leap Year, but 1900 wasn’t. So why is this called Leap Year? That’s another story. In a normal year, the day of the week aligned with a date moves forward one day each year. If your birthday was on Tuesday this year, it will be on Wednesday next year. That is unless it’s Leap Year; then the spare day moves forward or leaps the weekly sequence ahead.
Leap Day is now becoming a popular modern holiday. Don’t let it fall into a chasm, smile at its checkered past and celebrate with good humor. Most February 29 babies do. They can take any time they please for a birthday celebration, except during the rare years when the gift of the extra day rolls around.
More Leap Year information is available on line at http://www.leapzine

Leap Day – Saturday, February 29, 2020 – Bachelors’ Day
This most rare and extraordinary of days is drawing near. This precious gift of extra time, an entire extra day, is perfect for seeking new vistas and openings into other dimensions. Take a life leap, veer away from the normal and average range of activities, how can you rule your own destiny? . Perhaps a dream will provide inspiration. Higher powers are at work. Themes to embrace include courage, playfulness pleasure and adventure.
Color of the Day – Dusty Rose …. Crystal – Aquamarine
Tea or incense – Mint …. Food – Apple (fresh fruit, cider, pie, etc.)

A special Thank You to “The Witches’ Almanac”  for the gracious permission to reprint portions of this article which originally appeared there.

The Rune Stones and Astrology
Mercury’s Gift of Wisdom
By Dikki-Jo Mullen
In ancient times astrologers personified the planetary energies. The planets were seen as powerful and divine beings who showered gifts on worthy mortals or created trials and tribulations to help humanity to learn and grow. Contemporary astrology tends to view the celestial forces more as cycles of energy. Scientific and impersonal, they affect life on Earth in a more detached way. Regardless of how one prefers to interpret the planetary influences one fact remains unchanged. Mercury is the planet which influences intellectual ability, the thought processes, travel, communication and awareness. A deep understanding of Mercury’s influence will aid in the quest for the best employment, use of aptitudes, and important communication with others. Early Nordic cosmology taught that the God Woden, who corresponds to the Roman God Mercury, received a special gift from the universe. Woden shared this gift with mortals to help us develop inherent aptitudes.
This wonderful gift was a special set of symbols called The Rune Stones. The word rune comes from the Old Icelandic root word “runar”, the Anglo-Saxon “run” and Old German “runar”. All of these words mean “whisper”, “secret” or “mystery”. The runic symbols are a series of sketches which can address every conceivable situation. They relate to finances, love, health, success and failure. The runes offer inspirations and timely warnings when needed. Those who know how to read them can provide answers to problems with amazing clarity and expertise.
The runes have another gift to offer in addition to information. They are believed to act as magical charms, not only pinpointing problems but describing how to resolve them. Nordic mythology is rich in runelore. Instances of prisoners escaping their bonds, travelers avoiding accidents and lovers avoiding treachery through the wise employment of runes are plentiful. The runic symbols address issues in a very basic way. With just a little practice and faith those interested in astrology and related topics can learn to use them. Traditionally each seeker would make his or her own set of runes. Clay tablets, pieces of wood, shells or stones of about 1 inch square work well. These are painted or inscribed with the sacred symbols. Don’t worry about irregular shapes. These just add more character and help to personalize the runes. When the collection of painted pebbles, shells, etc, are completed, they are traditionally carried in a box or draw string bag. This is called a futhark (alphabet). Merely carrying a full Futhark, a set of runes, is thought to assure protection and good fortune.
A number of methods are used to consult the oracle. The easiest and often best is Woden’s Rune. This is to use the left hand, the psychically sensitive hand. Reach into the bag and merely draw one rune. For a more detailed read, the bag can be shaken, the runes cast onto a table and the ones which fall face up are interpreted. To call upon the runes for a blessing, typically for prosperity or true love, select a symbol which appeals to you then ink it onto a piece of parchment. Red, the color of the life force, or blood, is thought to be the sacred color of runemal (rune practice).
Those vitki (rune practitioners) who are more artistic might inscribe a ceramic tablet or metal plate to wear on a chain or even embroider the symbols onto clothing. Do this with some subtlety though. Runes are connected to the most ancient of mysteries. Mystics and soothsayers will heed the power held by the runes’ sanctity and semi-secrecy.
Woden or Mercury is credited with inventing writing. The letters in modern alphabets can be traced back to runic symbols. Just as language changes from generation to generation and place to place, the runes will have variables. Their clarity and accuracy is becoming more and more appreciated and is being used by more and more astrologers and psychic readers. It’s all part of the whole. The variety of different symbols can be a bit perplexing to the novice. The ideal approach is to study the various kinds of runes which come your way, then select the symbols which touch your heart with the greatest sincerity.
Astrological Futhark
Here is a combination of runic symbols as they link to astrology. Those astrologers who are attracted to esoteric or spiritual astrology may use these for deeper insights.

Cattle (Feoh) relates to Taurus. It represents a business transaction, the drawing or opportunity and wealth. Reversed it warns of the loss of cash or valuables.

Birch Twig (Berkana) links to the Moon. It relates to religious ceremonies, sacrifice and making one’s own luck. Carry it for self purification and to overcome hesitancy. Reversed it indicates obstacles to overcome and the need for diligence.

Torch (Porn) related to Jupiter. It represents power and higher authorities. It shows that strong measures must be enacted to discover the light of truth. Reversed it cautions against a formidable adversary.

Signals or Flag (Os) is Mercury, Woden’s own rune. Seek the facts, needed information comes your way. Heed what synchronicites show what is meant to be. Letters, calls, conversations and messages are revealing. Reversed it hints at confused or twisted information.

Journey (Raido) relates to Gemini and Sagittarius and encourages the continuation of a quest. It is auspicious for travel, for moving forward. Cut away dead weight and non essentials. Reversed it warns or lack of unity, a failed plan.

Fires, Light (Sowelu) links to The Sun. A bright new season commences, wholeness and illumination are anticipated. Recharge, regenerate, the self is a vehicle for the light. Health and vitality improve. Carry this rune for personal power and for individuality. It will help you to shine. There is no reversed meaning.

Partnership (Gyfu) relates to Libra. Cooperation brings success, Equality and justice ring a needed balance. Partnership. There is no reversed meaning.

Joy (Wunjo) is Leo’s rune. Blessings come, a time of plenty commences. Wellbeing, new and progressive energies are unfolding. Be true to what is good within the self. When reversed it means that perseverance is needed. See the upbeat side of a challenge to be met.

Hail (Hagalaz) relates to Capricorn. Wind, winter, snow storms and upsets create challenges to one’s comfort zone. Material needs might have to be fulfilled with meager resources. Upsets lead to growth. The reversed meaning is the same.
Needs (Nyd) is the rune of Pluto and Scorpio. Survival is difficult and weaknesses arise. What is lacking is obvious. Reversed it brings a warning to control anger and animal instincts.

Spear or Arrow (Ger) belongs to Mars. Courage, move on, cut away debris and blockages. Act with trust and have faith that all will be well. If reversed don’t be reckless, stop and examine the motives involved before undertaking an action.

Yew Tree (Eoh) belongs to Saturn and Virgo. Eternal cycles bring a reminder that human influences are minimal. Conserve effort, be aware of timing. Orderly action. If reversed the meaning is unchanged.

Initiation, Secrets (Pear) is for Neptune and Pisces. It’s a Phoenix. Hard to understand events are unfolding. Prepare for the unexpected and there is gain. A new dawn. Reversed it warns of a lack of focus. Conserve effort. Prioritize.

Protection (Eolth) corresponds to the sign of Cancer. A traditional approach is best. Set boundaries. Keep out harmful influences with grace and tolerance but don’t be overly exclusive. If reversed guard against exploitive associates and excessive generosity.

Human, the Self (Mannaz) corresponds to Aries and to the Ascendant. Self respect, peaceful acceptance of the Self, following personal values is the message. Reversed it shows creating problems for oneself and accenting weaknesses.

Water, Flow (Laguz) relates to Aquarius. Psychology, heed intuition, immerse the self into the low of life. Attune to what is comfortable. If reversed there is a danger of being drained and exhausting resources through keeping bad company. Don’t swim upstream.

Fertility, Creativity (Ing) is the rune of Venus. Harmony with others, love, the arts and beauty add meaning to life. Creative expression, a birth. There is no reversed meaning.

Berserker, Whirlwind of energy (Tyr) is Uranus. Old habits become meaningless, be aware of current trends. Exceptional gifts arise. If reversed don’t be eccentric and reckless. Protect the present position.

These are the Elder or most ancient Futhark. Over the years a Younger Futhark has evolved, elaborating upon the traditional symbols which first emerged about the year 900 CE. Feel free to experiment with including new runes or looking at alternative viewpoints. This study is offered as a starting point. The Runes have a Retrograde Mercury sort of magic as Woden hung upside down in Ygraddsdill, the World Tree, for 9 days and nights before receiving the runes from the three Norns. Their names are Skuld, Urd and Verdandi, (Future, Past and Present) . The wise will toss three coins into a body of water as a gift to the Norns for the runes. The sacred symbols really belong to these three enigmatic beings. The Norns are the Weird Sisters, the Fates who spin and weave the zodiacal wheel. It is a the web of time holding the past, present and future paths of human life.