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The Book of Runes, 25th Anniversary Edition Hardcover – November 11, 2008


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Frequently Bought Together

The Book of Runes, 25th Anniversary Edition + Amethyst Set of Rune Stones + A Practical Guide to the Runes: Their Uses in Divination and Magic (Llewellyn's New Age)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books; 25th anniversary edition (November 11, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312536763
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312536763
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 5.4 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,847 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Cultural anthropologist, writer, and publisher Ralph H. Blum has been working with and teaching the Viking Runes as a tool for self-counseling since 1977.

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Customer Reviews

This is the second one I've purchased for a gift.
Look4Good
This is a great book for anyone interesting in learning the art of Rune Divination.
Mysterious
I am really enjoying The Book of Runes by Ralph Blum.
Coco L. Crissey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Wildervine on December 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I put off getting The Book of Runes for years because I'd read some reviews that were highly critical of the non-traditional way they were set-up and used by Ralph Blum. But for a birthday gift, my husband let me choose whatever I wanted from our local bookstore and The Book of Runes finally found their way into my shopping basket as one of several items I chose that night. I absolutely do not regret my choice.

I had studied the more traditional use of Runes in the past but had no trouble at all understanding what Ralph Blum has tried to accomplish with his newer take on the Runes. If you are a strict re-constructionist, yes, you may have problems with this set. But if you are like me, you may find that you appreciate someone offering a somewhat new interpretation on an ancient oracle. I found Mr. Blum's presentation a meaningful way to use the Runes- imbued with a gentle spirit of guidance and relevance to the modern Runecaster. I did not find the interpretations shallow; on the contrary, although simply written the meanings assigned to each Rune have resonance and depth. Blum's text is written in a very user-friendly, inviting style that I found highly enjoyable. The readings I've done with The Book of Runes have never failed to offer me some needed enlightenment. Blum also includes some great layouts to get you started in interpreting the Runes, although it would also be very easy to create your own personal uses with this set. Overall, I give The Book of Runes a 5 star rating for the warm, inspiring text, ease of use, and for his obviously loving re-interpretation of an ancient oracle.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Madelyn Griffith-Haynie on December 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover
If you look over the reviews of Blum's various Runic texts you will see raves and pans: from, effectively, "the man is an expert" to "the man is a charlatan." He is neither, and I think discounting the texts because they do not follow the ancient Norse interpretations is unfair, bordering on mean-spirited -- missing the value of this small volume in the rush to opine.

Those who want to objectify their own unconscious wellsprings so that they can reflect on the messages bubbling up within them will find this little book a wonderful companion you will turn to frequently. If you are looking for scholastic history and interpretation, I would like to suggest that you will be unhappy with ANY book this slim, regardless of author.

I particularly don't understand the reviews that complain that Blum "made up his own system" and those that ring in saying that "it is okay to rethink tradition, but you need to be upfront about it." Did you READ the book before you skipped to the pages suggesting interpretations for the symbols?

In my copy, at least, which I've had for decades, he tells the story of how he came to his ordering of the Runes AND the interpretations in his text: he let the Runes themselves speak to him from a meditative state. It sure doesn't sound to ME like he's trying to pass himself off as a Runic Scholar steeped in tradition!

Not everyone has the time for (or interest in) an in-depth exploration of oracular systems of various sorts -- including a deeper cut on Runemal itself. Some of us who have studied other systems simply want a quick hit of in-sight to guide our steps through a busy day or a difficult transition.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sage on January 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I have been an intuitive for years and years. I also am always seeking ways to connect to my higher Self. Blums Runes are incredible, as long as you know how to self-reflect. They are as deep as you, yourself, are, and give immediate insight to the issue and what is in the energy surrounding you at the time of the reading. Believe or don't believe, they work for me!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Andrea Samadi on February 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Since 2001, I have owned my Book of Runes, and stone set, and use them in times of challenge. I found comfort in knowing that my challenging times would soon pass, and that these times were needed for me to fully develop my talents. I could have paid money to an intuitive for my readings, but know that the answers all lie within myself. The Book of Runes is a great tool to help guide you when you need an explanation for why things have halted or dried up, when your deep desire is to move forward. Sometimes the lessons learned are what is important and The Book of Runes will clearly define exactly where you are in your life, so that you can draw wisdom from these life lessons, and move ahead with more understanding and strength.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Manjushri on July 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I am not a rune scholar. In fact, this is only the third Rune book I have read; however, I have studied the tarot for several years, so I am familiar with that oracular system. There have been many reviews written about this book's place in the world of rune knowledge and information. I am going to stay away from that and treat this book on it's own merits.

The most important thing for you to know is that this book is one man's personal spiritual vision. It is not scholarship, and it is certainly not Norse scholarship. There are snip-its of poetry and prayers from many cultural sources - the eddas, a Japanese samurai, St. Francis, the bagavad gita, etc. In other words, this is a new age book that happens to talk about the runes. That can be enriching at times and distracting at others. Which predominates for you will depend on how the different "sources" happen to vibrate with what you like and know.

As far as the descriptions of the individual runes go, the main problem is that many are repetitive.

For example, mannaz is described as indicating, "A time of growth," Ansuz is said to focus on "the mechanism of self change," uruz is the "rune of new beginnings," ignuz is described also as a "rune of new beginnings" kano is a "rune of renewed clarity."

Another cluster of meanings gathers around another set runes: Othila "the proper action here is submission." Nauthiz "The necessity of learning how to deal with restraint." Eihwaz "consider that even delay and obstactle may prove beneficial." Etc.

So there are few basic themes: always be open to new growth. Don't be impatient. Etc. Fine, but then why the 25 different runes when there are only a few basic messages?
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