I awoke this morning from a dream in which I identified the Hagalaz Rune to a former college professor of mine. He had begun to show me his latest research, found in a rare book with an ornate Hagalaz on the left page and a “picture” of an infinity sign made of bees on the other side. I put picture in quotes, because the bees buzzed around, keeping the infinity sign in living, breathing motion. “That’s Hagalaz!” I said to the professor, “Do you know what that means?!” I stared, transfixed by the bees, watching how their energy engaged the Rune, making it, too, seem to dance upon the page.
My professor disappeared for awhile and returned with an envelope that read, “Please don’t ask me questions about the limits of my research in MY class.” The word “MY” was capitalized and raised, as if by layers and layers of magazine cutouts of that word, taped to the envelope. I realized that he had no idea what he had discovered in purely academic research. He sensed I knew more about this topic, but he didn’t want to look unscholarly in front of his students. I stared at the bees and the now vibrating Rune, marveling that the professor could actually care about his ego more than the miracle we held in our hands.
Hagalaz is one of those Runes you kind of hope you can avoid. Common interpretations include “harsh agent of change,” “hailstorm,” “loss,” “the hag,” “crisis and catastrophe.” Hagalaz is to Runes what the Tower Card is to the Tarot. It means big time change and acknowledges the sometimes traumatic aspects of that process. According to Ari Berk, as written for Brian Froud’s “The Runes of Elfland,” “When we endeavor to change, we walk the parallel paths of creation and destruction because nothing ends without something arriving to take its place. [The hag’s] nature is that of the hailstone levling crops, yet changing to water in time, a thing most necessary for future growth.” (p. 103)
In keeping with the hail theme, Hagalaz has another form called Hagal, which I often included in portal doors. It looks like a six pointed snowflake, and I used to call it my “create a new Universe Rune.”
According to http://Runes-for-Health-Wealth-Love-Now.com, “RUNE-HAGAL is called the MOTHER OF ALL RUNES because she gives birth to the Consciousness Of One within you.” I love Rune-Hagal, especially its emphasis on harmony; however, the Hagalaz form showed itself in my dream, not the pretty snowflake form. When I awoke, I glanced up from the bedroom window and noticed two squirrels working together to build a nest just at the level of the attic I asked them not to inhabit this winter. They did move, relocating themselves outside, but what I noticed this morning was their gathering of leaves and twigs. I watched them for ten minutes or more, enjoying the careful gathering and placing of tiny branches. At that moment, I got a strong hit to consult “The Runes of Elfland.” Sure enough, the Rune story for the Rune of Loss makes much of the hag gathering twisty branches — a further emphasis on the dream Rune’s Hagalaz aspect.
In “The Book of Runes,” Robert Blum associates Hagalaz with “Disruption,” “Elemental Power,” “Hail.” These sound harsh, but he goes on to remind us: “Change, freedom, invention and liberation are all attributes of this Rune. Drawing it indicates a pressing need within the psyche to break free from constricting identification with material reality and to experience the world of the archetypal mind.”
Tyriel of Rune Secrets explains it this way: “Don’t try to fix what we should break before it breaks us.” “Hagalaz is the rune of objective confrontation with past patterns. It will uncover the vast flow of energies around and through human energy systems. Its nature is completely impersonal and it represents power generally beyond human ability to harness. … Hail shocks you with stinging hardness (confrontation) then it melts into water which creates germination of seeds (transformation). The ancients describe hail as a grain rather than as ice, thus creating a metaphor for a deeper truth of life. It contains the seed of all the other runic energies and this can be seen in its other form, a six-fold snowflake. Spiritual awakening often comes from times of deep crisis.”
Sound familiar, anyone? 2012 energies for sure! But what about those bees? Well, last night, I had asked the faeries to do some work on my teeth and any structural paradigms that needed shifting in my sleep. Bees have close associations with faeries and the Divine Feminine. When I painted doors 11 and 12 in 2010 in Canada, a shaman came to see me at my request. I had been “told” I’d find the right one there, and sure enough, synchronicities connected us. On her way to my location, a bee got trapped in her car and stung her cheek. She said that had “never happened before,” and she took it as a sign of bee medicine needed in my healing. She proceeded to remove “an entire hive” from my heart. Apparently, the bees had been working diligently on my heart, but their temporary “hive” had gotten stuck, even though they’d completed the original healing. She spent an hour, carefully extracting honeycomb pieces, freeing the bees as she did so. It was a potent healing, and I’ve felt closely tied to bees ever since.
As some of us know, bees indicate the health of ecosystems worldwide, and the bees are dying. Scientists have presented explanations from pesticide use to cell phone tower frequencies, but in truth, we don’t really know why the bees leave. I plant flowers to attract bees in my garden, and I talk with them whenever they arrive. According to my favorite shamanism site for dream interpretations, “Bee’s Wisdom includes:
Connection to the Goddess Diana
Understanding female warrior energy
Communication with the dead
Helping earth-bound spirits move on to their proper place
So … some interpretations of bees swarming in an infinity symbol, could mean infinite prosperity, infinite reincarnation, infinite removal of limitations that keep people bound to 3D reality, a return to an infinite sense of the Divine Feminine permeating our world. Plus a warrior willingness to fight for these things! Coupled with the Hagalaz Rune, the bees feel like pure potential for a quantum leap for those willing to set aside limitations imposed by ego. Now is not the time to fear looking stupid for not seeing sooner with the higher perspective becoming available. Sure, we will all probably have moments of “OMG, I can’t believe I ever bought into that!” Some people will choose denial over facing Truth, no matter how liberating Truth can be. “The Truth will set you free,” only sounds appealing to people interested in true freedom, which includes taking responsibility for your own beliefs, emotions, thoughts and the reality these create.
Someone (I think it’s Abraham, but not sure) said, “Belief is simply habitual thought.” In other words, we can change beliefs by redirecting our thoughts. “Truth” can shift as we decide to shift ourselves, as long as we don’t get stuck on looking “right” about negative “facts” that our former beliefs produced — because when we change our beliefs, the facts will absolutely appear to change. In “fact,” they will change, which means some formerly “right” interpretations will no longer fit. We will have grown beyond them!
Hail can pummel plants, but it also waters the ground from which they grow. As we move deeper into the energies of 2012, we continue to face the challenge of freeing ourselves from all that’s come before, or hunkering down and grasping to the old. As Rune Secrets reveals, “Hagalaz can be used as a force of repulsion or banishment. It is used in work to process and dispel the effects of subconscious baggage and ‘shadow elements’ so that your life pattern can carry itself forward in its pure form. Hagalaz has the magical energy of a ‘spring cleaning’.”
On February 29, 2012, we’ve gained an extra day, a leap year day in a year of quantum leaps. As I type this post, the sun shines brightly and the squirrels are upgrading their nest. We stand at the split of two worlds … a world in which all sorts of regulations and restrictive laws take effect on March 1 … or a world of infinite breakthroughs and radical discontinuity. Just like the Tower Card with its tossing of old paradigms into the sea, we have the power to embrace such change, thereby softening the blow.
We can harness that usually un-harnessable force and redirect it to hopes and dreams that need more fuel. We can choose which parts of our past we wish to bring forward, and we can reevaluate those relics that “society” told us to forget. As Ari Berk explains, “[The hag’s] realm includes those portions of Elfland most often lost to the modern world; the frontiers of crumbling kingdoms, the plains of forgotten epics, ruins, mead halls, stone circles, barrows, and the landscapes of ancestral memory. She inhabits all places where we forget to ask, ‘What happened here?’ She pauses at every hearth-side where a story is begun but left unfinished.” (The Runes of Elfland)
What’s your story? What’s our story? We’re at a potentially radical plot juncture. How and where would you love to arrive? Happy Quantum Leap Year!