Monday, December 9, 2013

Crafting the Runes: Wynn

Bliss he enjoys who knows
not suffering, sorrow, nor anxiety,
and has prosperity and happiness
and a good enough house.

This section of the Anglo-Saxon rune poem speaks of the rune Wynn, which translates directly to "joy".  The Saxons apparently had a very wide definition of joy, one which is often overlooked today in our materialist-driven culture.  If you aren't suffering, in sorrow or anxious, the poem says, you are enjoying bliss.  If you have prosperity, happiness, and a "good-enough" house - you are enjoying bliss.  Alaric Albertsson talks about this rune in his book Wyrdworking: The Path of a Saxon Sorcerer.  In it, he translates the Anglo-Saxon word blæd as "prosperity" - which the translation above also does - but makes note that "blæd does not necessarily mean 'endless wealth;' it means 'having enough'."

Joy, to the Anglo-Saxons, was having the resources and tools you needed to build a good life.  This is a lesson many, including myself, desperately need today.  Having just enough of what you need is wealth and bliss, perhaps greater than that of the very rich.  I am in a position myself where I have a lovely home, enough food to put on the table each night, and that's about it - not a lot of room for extras.  Wynn teaches me that there is great happiness to be found in that.

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