Wednesday, October 10, 2018

On Taking an Omen...

Omens in public rites begin far before the actually pulling of the staves. I first begin with feeling the space prior to the beginning of the rite, getting a solid baseline for the energies of the place before we begin. Without this baseline, it is more difficult to detect the changes in the atmosphere, which may be subtle. Once the rite has begun, I pay close attention to the words of the ritual celebrants, the words of the folk, the body language of the folk, animal-kin signs, and patterns of clouds or changes in the sky. All of these are ways in which the natural environment responds to the moving energy and influences the folk in attendance.  Once the final sacrifice has been made, I take a drop of Water from the Well and place this upon my third eye to attune myself to the words of the Wise. I wave my hand over the fire and touch the tree, as well, if we are in a space to do so. I speak a blessing that is a variation of the following:

May the true sight be upon me.
May my eyes be opened that I may see the truth.
May I speak clearly the blessings as the Kindreds wish the folk to hear them.

I rub the runes between my fingers in the bag as I am speaking the Seer’s Blessing. Once complete, I place my hand in the bag and take up a handful of runes. I let them fall out of my hand until the heaviest in left. I pull each stave in succession of “part, present, and future” to get a full sense of the omen. The “past” is that which the Kindreds wish to remind us that is relevant to the present. The “present” is that which is coming to pass that leads us to the future. The “future” is the potential outcome of these events. Taken together, the omen provides information regarding how we ended up where we are, where we are going, and what guidance the Kindreds have for us moving forward.

When taking an omen for an individual, it is different. I typically begin by asking the other person who their allies are in order to make offerings and prepare myself to listen to these Spirits. I ask them if they would like the three- or the five-rune spread. I have the individual make offerings, if appropriate for their relationship, and to think on their question, making it a single question, as clear and concise as possible. After a few moments of introspection and light trance induction for myself, I open myself to the influence of their allies and begin to feel the runes in the bag. After I feel the connection between myself and their allies, I place my hand in the bag and draw the same as listed above, letting the heaviest runes stay in my hand until I have the number of staves desired by the individual. I allow the inspiration of the allies to speak through me and the runes as I explain what I am seeing. When it feels as though the message is done, I declare, “This I have seen,” to let the individual know I have completed. Then, I ask, “Do you understand?” From here, further clarification via another rune may be provided at the discretion of the individual. There are times when the message is not one the individual understands, and I have had to tell someone I do not see or hear anything, and ask if they’d like to ask another question or try again at another time.

In my work with public omens, you will note that I do not call to a spirit ally of my own. I have found that taking the omen in public is very similar to taking an omen for another individual. It is not about me and my allies. It is about the folk and what message the Kindreds has for us as a whole. If I limit myself to only that which my allies wish to share, I filter the entire experience through myself. In order to be a better servant, I have learned when to listen to my own allies and when a greater audience is to be given to the hosts.