5 - Moving with Raidho
I'm Kelley Harrell, author, animist, and creator of The Weekly Rune. Soul Intent Arts is my soul tending practice, and you are listening to What in the Wyrd--my podcast in which I talk about runes, animism, soul tending, and how all of those are in relationship on my path.
Before we start, all props to the runes, the weekly runecast keeps me aligned, thanks to my Allies, the Ancestors, and to everyone who listens to and supports the podcast. I'm happy to share relationship with the runes and this space with you.
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The Weekly Rune is currently available, and if you're not sure what it is, it's a runecast that I've done for years focused on Nigel Pennick’s calculation of a runic calendar and the current half-month rune, grounded by the elements, directions, season, and Spirits of Place.
If you're not sure what a half-month is or what runic calendar I work with, listen to the early episodes of What in the Wyrd, or just go read The Weekly Rune. It's explained fully at the beginning of every runecast. The full version is available only through Patreon, though you can read the highlights for free every week on my website - soul intent arts dot com.
And, while I’m talking about Nigel Pennick, ya’ll I’ve been sitting on this for so long and I suck at keeping secrets. he told me last year that he would be republishing his runic astrology work--which provides the base calendar for my book, and has been out of print for years. It’s called Runes and Astrology - Symbol and Starcraft in the Northern Tradition. So yes, different title, and there are a few updated bits and extra tables at the end and artwork--cos yes, I’ve seen it!!! Such a fangirl.
It’s available for pre-order now on all the places. Go! Run! Get it! I’m so stoked about this book!
Ooooof. Onto more personal things. Thank you to everyone who’s checked in about me and What in the Wyrd over the last few months. It turns out submitting a manuscript, two surgeries, and a flu are enough to throw things off for a while. Two of those things were planned, two weren’t. Thanks to my Patreon and Spirited Path communities for all their support in getting my manuscript for Eldering Well off to the publisher. I have appreciated being able to talk with y’all about that.
And I am stoked to return in this episode!
For a brief refresher: this season of What in the Wyrd is exploring the Runes as Verbs, or how to make ancient runelore actionable--how to live it, how to make the concepts of the Elder Futhark embodied.
That--to me--is wyrdweaving at its deepest potential.
In this episode we’re focusing on Raidho
With the Raidho galdr, we have though are not limited to - Raidho - Rhye, Ryedthe, Ryedthoh. I’ve said this about six thousand times in The Weekly Rune, but if you feel the galdr when you utter it, you’re doing it right. People get hung up on pronunciation, but at the end of the day, if it resonates in your body--that’s the magick you’re looking for.
In the late 80s early 90s, if you weren’t Wiccan, Asatru, Reconstructionist, or some notable flavor of paganry, you were solitary. Not just in that your cosmology didn’t mesh with the given plug-n-plays, but nobody knew what to do with you, thus you weren’t taken seriously as a pagan. If you were also approaching your path from a place of soul tending or energy hygiene, you were automatically considered New Age and omitted from paganism altogether.
And nobody was having the animism-as-a-personal-path conversation at that time. That was absolutely not to be had, and when I brought it up in spiritually based classes or communities nobody knew what it was. Whole other problem. Or it was relegated to academia--also whole other problem.
So that was my personal experience of shiny 90s spirituality, and it was that way for a lot of people and worse.
There was all this emphasis on creating quiet and solitude in your life to do your spiritual thing. And I never could. In my lane of the soul work and energy tending of the time, I could shift energy and travel out of my body to bring back medicine at will, all day, on demand, but I couldn’t bring any of it up over a board game or in a conversation with loved ones. I couldn’t talk about my spiritual path or approaches with many people at all. And that felt very off to me. And I’m not just talking about the difficult conversations around difference in religious paths, or even that nobody ever knew what I meant when I said ‘animism.’ It was a deeper lack of weaving relationships into how I moved in Midgard and Beyond that I yearned for, so I just quit looking beyond myself. I put my emphasis on honing my soul tending skills and keeping all the moving pieces and parts of my life each in their own lane.
But that’s the problem with that kind of approach: there are no lanes. And even when you try to affix lanes, the pieces and parts refuse to stay in them.
With Ansuz, we talked about it as the first rune that really brings the formed experience into the context of what we’re doing with our agency, and it comes in the form of expression--creating--what we breathe life into. With Raidho we’re charged to take that creation deeper and into the world. We’re tasked with giving our agency movement. It can’t just be stagnant or masturbatory. It can’t be with the idea that we will just keep our agency in our own lane, because agency is in all the lanes, all the agency, all the time, and whether we’re aware of it or we aren’t, our agency is having impact all the time.
But we’re not at the impact part of agency with Raidho. We’re feeling the thrill and excitement of realizing soul-in-form can do stuff here. Moving from Ansuz into Raidho then Kenaz continues a progression that plays out in the runes over six weeks, or three half-months. When we evolve from the initial first aett runes, we shift from realizing our consciousness to figuring out what to do with it. We become dissatisfied with just being and we want. to. do. I express that progression as the recipe, Ansuz + Raidho = Kenaz, or:
inspiration + storytelling = meaning
soothsaying + storytelling = meaning
soothsaying + movement = lore
confidence + experience = authority
Lot of wiggle room in that, but you get the gist. At this point in the Futhark progression, we start wanting to move our agency around, and how we internalize this recipe has everything to do with how we handle the chaos of the second aett. Foreshadowing.
Raidho is the rune of movement. To move. Raidho is often described as travel, though not random wandering. It implies following some sort of direction, yet not with a fixed destination. Animistically speaking, it carries connotations of how we literally move among all the relationships of being, yet it is very centered around our own story of what’s happening, how well we follow our inner compass--the part of us that is connected to sacred order. Wherever we’re headed, we know where we’re going, even if we arrive some place unexpected, because we let the embodied soul-in-forming that we’ve been doing lead us there. For this reason Raidho has traditionally been associated with very supportive, needs-met aspects.
Where Ansuz comes from a place of expressing our agency, Raidho takes it the next step, literally and gives our agency movement. We’re to take what we glean from the internal process of realizing what we know and learning to express it in the way that conveys our truth, then release it to the world and see where it goes. We’re to literally take ourselves out into the world and open to experiences that take our truth deeper, broader, bloodier, all the while still expressing it, still breathing its own agency into being.
All told, that is what humans do. As the custodians of the earthly realm, the ones with the most agency for success with these physics, our job is to stand in our truth and do what it bids. Because at the end of the day if we’re really working that whole process, it means that we’re in sacred order, we’re bearing our calling, our unique gift to the world. That’s why we’re here. We come on borrowed time and energy. It is not ours to keep, so every move we make has to uphold the integrity and sacred order that gave us that energy to start with.
Until the next rune… which won’t be as long as last time…
Thank you for listening. If you have questions or insights about working with the runes as verbs, or in season, or however you feel called to work with them, or you just want to drop me a line you can do that at Kelley, that's k e l l e y at soulintentarts.com.
Also check out earlier episodes by downloading them from all various podcast platforms. You can learn more about me, Runic Book of Days, and my work by visiting soulntintentarts.com or on Instagram @kelleysoularts. You can also find notes on this episode on my website, under the menu option Read… Liveable Runelore. The transcript of this episode can be found at Kajabi.
I'm Kelley and this has been What in the Wyrd. Thank you for all that you do in the world.