Friday, 27 April 2012

H is for the rune Haegl, Hagalaz or Hagall

I mentioned a bit about the rune Haegl or Hagalaz (meaning 'hail' in my last H post, saying it was one of the more ancient symbols, predating the runic system as it has been found carved in older archaeological locations, in the shape of a snowflake - and so, I believe being connected to the ancient winter goddess, Holda.

In the Anglo Saxon rune poem:
"Hail is the whitest of grains,
it comes from heigh in heaven,
showers of wind hurl it
then it turns to water."

Haegl is the ninth rune and so is the first of the second Aettir, the second lot of runes in the system.  It translates as "hail", the unexpected hailstorm arising from nowhere and shattering the joy and harmony we had just established with the previous rune, Wynn or Wynjo.  It is out of control, it has no prelude. It comes from nowhere and goes back to nowhere, bringing chaos, misery and upset.

Haegl is a rune of disruption and it throws us off route, like many episodes in our lives. It overshaddows all aspects of our life with intense power. In the full force of the storm it feels like it will go on for ever. But what is interesting is that in reality it is over rapidly. However, its implications can last a lifetime. It signifies the sudden disruptive, often devastating, things that happen unexpectedly in your life.

In ancient times, it could be even more devastating as the hail could smash crops and ruin a harvest, often kill livestock and could be fatal in the community. Haegl is at its core is that which we cannot change. It is us who change.  It is the past that haunts us and the present that locks us into this moment. It could even represent nuclear war or catastrophic global cliimate change brought about by human actions.

The events that are the hallmark of Haegl are always dramatic, even if only just to us personally. A breakup with a loved one, a death in the family, a turn of luck that brings radical change for good or bad. These events give us tremendous pause and sometimes we must begin again from the beginning, embracing the opportunity to have a clean slate, no matter how painful

Gaining power over this energy lies in accepting that which we cannot change, adapting where we can and surrendering where we cannot. It means courage and defiance in the face of the impossible.

Haegl is a reminder to us that certain things, as catastrophic and devastating as they may be, are not worth worrying about. Let go, forgive, forgive yourself. You can do nothing about what happened, only what will happen now. The forgiving of the unalterable is the secret that Haegl reveals to us. When we stop repressing the dark site, the negative, stop living according to our past and fearing the future we then actually become whole and face the future through new, changed eyes.

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