I drew Hagalaz the day Mercury went retrograde, and when I went to check to see if I’d ever written about it I discovered that I hadn’t. I was originally going to start posting my Rune posts over on Life of a Raven, but I decided in the end to keep them here, with all of the other Odin related things. It suits best, and allows me to keep LoaR more focused on my writing and some LGBTQ issues (and other Pagan things that aren’t necessarily Odin related).
That’s kind of what Hagalaz is. Not necessarily balance, but more finding what works for you and what doesn’t. It’ll make you question everything. To use an example from Galina Krasskova’s website:
This is the rune that will look at a vegetarian and say: “this is a luxury you have because you live in a wealthy country with no connection to its food.You have never truly been hungry. It is a luxury your ancestors lacked. If you want my help, the payment I demand is that you eat meat and honor it for everything that it meant to your dead.” (I use this example because I know a rune worker to whom this actually happened). It will look at the meat eater and say: “Do you know where that comes from? Do you know the suffering that went into every bite you are consuming? What can you do to make this better? Consider. Consider everything.”
To be clear, I am not the vegetarian she is speaking of. (Though the night I drew Hagalaz I did eat salmon for dinner.)
It will make you question your own beliefs, why you hold them, and if they truly work for you. Before I drew this Rune I’d actually been doing that myself. In fact, the week before this Rune came to me I did something I’d been considering doing for years: I joined ADF. I don’t want to go into too much detail about that just yet (I’ll make a post all about that another time), but suffice it to say that it felt like the right time.
When Hagalaz comes up be ready for a “spring cleaning” of sorts of internal things. A phrase that comes to mind with Hagalaz is “the only thing that stays the same is everything changes”. The Tower in the tarot comes to mind with this Rune. It’s the same breaking down, questioning, and rebuilding that The Tower represents.
Personally, for some reason, horses come to mind when I think about this Rune (though it’s actually Ehwaz that’s associated with the horse), though I haven’t quite been able to explore that in depth or figure out why just yet. It could just be the “H” or perhaps that you have to ride the animal and go with it, work with it instead of fighting it…because fighting it isn’t productive and makes the entire journey worse. Hagalaz strikes me as the same way. It has a message and a purpose, and if you fight against those then things will be hell–and I don’t mean a pleasant visit with Hel.