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Stadhagaldr - Runic Yoga

"...Stádhagaldr is an active system of magic that consists of the assumption of runic postures or gestures for magical effect... Gestures and postures form some part of almost every metaphysical or magical school. The can be seen from the simple folding of hands in prayer to the extremely complex system of asanas in the Indian hatha yoga school. Stádhagaldr is balanced in this respect. The number and intricacy of the postures are varied enough to be expressive of the wide variety of forces present, but none require extensive training or straining of the body.

"The overall aims of the stádhagaldr are:

1. control of the body through posture (stadha)
2. Control of thought through song (galdr)
3. Control of breath
4. Control of emotion
5. Becoming aware of the rune realms of the self and the world(s)
6. Control and direction of the will.

"...Stadhagaldr is used as a mode of psychological integration and personal transmutation, and it is also employed in all other types of magical operations."

Edred Thorsson, Futhark: A Handbook of Rune Magick Futhark  

The early 20th century German runemasters (F.B Marby, S.A. Krummer, and Karl Spiesberger) developed runic yoga as a means of harnessing the streams of power present in the earth and atmosphere.

"According to Marby there are five cosmic zones to be reckoned with: (1) inner-earth space, (2) material earth space, (3) wave space, (4) cosmic space, and (5) super cosmic space.


"The inner space of earth... is a vast but contained zone of tranquil space that radiates energy. This is compared to the outermost zone of cosmic space, which is also tranquil and radiant. Cosmic space, zone 4, is charged with radiations from the zone of cosmic space and is influenced by the physical bodies (stars, planets, etc.) that occupy it. Material earth space is the physical matter of the planet, which is heavily loaded with ancient forms of energy coursing through it in various patterns. Wave space is that zone just above the surface of the earth that our bodies inhabit. This is the region where energy patterns received from above and below are most freely exchanged.

"The rune magician makes him/herself capable of receiving and sending patterns of energy to and from all five of these zones. (...the rune magician becomes an antenna for the reception and broadcast of runic radio waves.) By using the proper runic postures, combined with the intonation of the right runic sound, the magician can draw in certain forces or combination of forces and then reshape and redirect them.

"...The interplay of forces within these various energy zones constitutes the phenomena of the universe. By becoming aware of them, engaging them, and guiding them consciously, the rune magician actively participates in the evolution and restructuring of the cosmos.

"The runes are the keys to the reception, absorption and projection of these forces. Their first effect is on the transformation and healing of the individual..."

Edred Thorsson, Rune Might: Secret Practices of the German Rune Magicians Rune Might

The above paragraphs are the merest introduction to the art of stadhagaldr. Before attempting any of the runic yoga postures, you are encouraged to learn more. The would-be rune magician is cautioned because wrongly prepared magical formali and sigels can have a deleterious effect. Heed the words of Odin, the High One, as recorded in the Hávamál.

Know how to cut them, know how to read them,
Know how to stain them, know how to prove them,
Know how to evoke them, know how to score them,
Know how to send them, know how to send them.

Better not to ask than to over-pledge
As a gift that demands a gift.
Better not to send
Than to slay too many.

Egil's Saga adds another warning:

Runes shall a man not score,
Save he can well to read them
That many a man betideth,
On a mirk stave to stumble.

With that said, and an admonishment to study further before attempting stadhagaldr (or any other form of rune magic), here are the runic yoga postures of the Elder Futhark.