I've been asked numerous times by soldiers and family members for magical charms to aid and protect our soldiers and news corps in the Middle East and elsewhere. I've put together a collection of Galdrastafir -- Viking era "magical staves". Most of these talismans are very ancient and effective.
According to tradition, the Aegishjalmur "helm of awe" should be worn over the forehead, perhaps scratched or drawn on the inside of one's helmet. Its purpose is protection and "irresistibility" in battle (as in the Borg's, "Resistance is futile."). One could also draw it on one's forehead with salvia or blood. It could be used as a tattoo.
The Vegvisir "runic compass" will help prevent one from getting lost--that's one I'd want tattooed, like Icelandic singer Björk. Or one might scratch or draw it on the inside of one's helmet. This one can also be drawn on one's forehead with saliva or blood.
Gapaldur and Ginfaxi were traditionally used in "glima", viking wrestling, but are also valid for combat of any nature. The charms historically were carried in one's shoes or drawn on one's feet. Do not use as a tattoo.
Odin's Illusionary Rune was used to make the bearer invisible or shape shift, such as the Viking berzerkers who took on the form, strength, and courage of bears in battle. Do not use as a tattoo.
Hraethigaldur and Ottastafur "terror staves" would be carried over one's breast, so consider putting them in a pocket or perhaps scratched onto dog tags. Do not use as a tattoo.
Svefnthorn "sleep thorn" will aid one in sleeping under the most adverse conditions. Lay it under the pillow or bed. It will also put someone else to sleep. Do not use as a tattoo.
Powerful binding and breaking locks and fetters are two sides of the same coin. I'd want the Lásabrjótur "lock breaker" tattooed right along side the Vegvisir.
Above all, a warrior needs good luck. The best luck of all is an end to war. No matter what our politics, we all want all our troops to come home healthy. Please join me in praying for peace, the safety of civilians, and to bring our men and women home as soon as possible.
One does not have to be a pagan to use these talismans. Some of the greatest Icelandic rune wizards were Christian clergy and bishops. Use of rune magic does not involve devil worship or the invoking of Satan or demons!
This entire collection is on one GIF file. Right-click to download. Print the graphic to carry, perhaps folded up and tucked into one's helmet or pocket. Print on Tyvek paper if you can find it; it won't tear or wear out. Tyvek is hard to find as letter sized paper, but you might find it as USPS Priority Mail or First Class envelopes. If you can't print, use a magic marker (preferably red, to symbolize blood) to draw the symbols instead. You could also create amulets by drawing or carving on wood or other material. There are merchants on the Commercial links page who sell silver or pewter rune amulet pendants, including several shown above. I've even found a source for black T-shirts with the Aegishjalmur design!
Some of these charms would all make great tattoos. I would not tattoo the terror staves, the sleep thorn, or the powerful binding charm. See my Runic Tattoos page.
Please note that the charms must be consecrated and charged to their purposes. Without consecration they are just interesting designs. One may create one's own consecration ritual. It can be as simple as meditation or prayer, or as complex as one desires. Focus intently on each charm's intended outcome. (Page back to read a sample ritual.) I am a Reiki Master and use Reiki energy to charge charms. Blooding the charms is not required, but it does boost the power. Prick a finger with a sterilized needle or lancet (or use menstrual or seminal fluid), placing a drop on each charm.
If you have need of a charm for a specific purpose not shown above, let me know and I will see if I have one that suits. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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