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Old 10-17-11   #1
SunSister
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Default Runework for Week Two: Part Seven

Gebo

Other names:
Gyfu, Gebu, Giof
Letter representation: g

Kennings: gift, partnership, talent, forgiveness, balance, agreement, settlement, legal practice, wedding, chance, sacrifice, duty
Associated colour: deep blue

Gebo is the seventh rune's 'gift' to this Aett. The rune is still used today when we write kisses as a greeting for someone. It is a rune that celebrates all forms of partnerships, whether love-related or otherwise, and promotes a healthy and stable interaction with others. To the people of old, the act of giving was very meaningful. The process of exchange was a binding of loyalty, which they valued highly. The acceptance of a gift was a pledge of one's trueness and faithfulness. Alliances are formed through the gebo-energy and settled in the sharing of generosity and joy.

Generosity is one of the core values of the people who once used the runes. The ability to give freely is the only way to gain loyalty and power. The old code of hospitality is grounded on gebo-energy as well. A wanderer relied on this code for food and shelter, which sometimes meant the difference between life and death. The host then gained the growth of good reputation. Gebo can be used in any endeavours that include a partnership, although one has to be very mindful of the rune's loyal and limitless giving. Not adhering to this free flow of energy will allow gebo to be used for a different purpose: a working called 'woe-working' that returns every insult and act of disloyalty blow for blow.

Another purpose for gebo is that of sacrifice. It governs religious sacrifice to the gods, but also a mystical sacrifice of the self to the self. Sacrifice is more than supplication or payment in the Norse line of thought. It is the binding of loyal love of one's self to the gods. Some warriors of old marked themselves with spears to show that they were Odin's. They gave themselves to Odin's group of einherjer (warriors fighting in the end times) as a return gift for all the victories and gifts Odin bestowed on them in life. Ritualistically speaking, gebo tells us that payments must always be made: energy and food, blood and life, etc. Gebo tells us that it is okay to give up all that we are for the sake of becoming something more. You cannot gain without experiencing loss.

Gebo's only warning concerning partnerships is that we must remain true to ourselves. It is the rune most often used in matters of love, because it enhances the balanced state of a relationship between two people. Gebo tells us to not lean on the other person as a crutch, but to let them grow and advance alongside us like faithful companions. It can be used in bindings for wedding rites and relationships, especially when combined with the eighth rune of this Aett. The good part of gebo is that it allows us to unbind these bindings when they no longer work for us, or when we feel that our relationship causes more harm than good to our individual selves. (It is markedly easier to let the erstwhile binder unravel these bindings, so you should take care to always be that binder yourself if you engage in this practice.)
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She had studied the universe all her life, but had overlooked its clearest message:
for small creatures such as we the vastness is bearable only through love.
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