There seems to be a lot of confusing ideas today concerning the ever-growing trend on the internet and other mind, body and spirit bookstore outlets not to differentiate between academic rune scholars and those who call themselves “rune experts”. A scholar is usually a student graduant from University or someone who has achieved a “mastery” of one or more academic disciplines. With the relative ease anyone can purchase ready-made “pseudo-scholarship” today, is it little wonder that this is sometimes near impossible to make out between the two types. So here are some guidelines to help the neophyte identify rune scholars from rune experts:
Rune Scholars Profile:
1) Qualified at the University level to a degree, masters or even a doctorate in runes and possibly Indo-European Languages
2) Fieldwork, archaeology and written sources their mainstay. Insistent on verifying sources with vast bibliographies to back up their arguments
3) Published authors in their specialized field via University Publishing Houses or equivalent.
4) Hold seminars with other scholars and students to promote mutual exchange of ideas.
5) They are not intimidated by critical remarks or questions, in fact scholar embrace challenges to their theories or sources
Rune Experts Profile:
1) A self-professed student of life. College drop out or perhaps they never even dropped in? Literacy and numeric skills seriously wanting and they usually avoid forums that require you to write or type like the plague.
2) Unverified Personal Gnosis via magickal experiments is their root source and if you dare disagree, they usually threaten you with a few choice curses claiming they are powerful sorcerers
3) Self-published or one of the many Llewellyn clone publishers who print virtually any garbage.
4) Hold fan club gatherings where they hope to sell more rune courses, runes or recruit more students into their rune clubs.
5) Don’t even go there, you will wind up being cursed by one of their many powerful psychic warriors
As a final thought: Never accept anybody’s word on the fuÞark Runes (including mine) Always verify and authenticate your sources. This does not mean buying UPG off the shelf (Unverified Personal Gnosis) based rune books especially if your book source is written by New Ageist self-proclaimed “rune-experts”. As a general guide, rune scholars write dissertations on the runes and back up their findings with bibliographies or well-indexed references. Look up “Runes” in any respectable encyclopedia or scholastic texts. If you are serious, go to a library and photocopy the relevant sections on runes from the library resources. Read up on as many history books on the Northern Way. It is through sound scholarship and reasoning rather than *magickal experimentations that some sense can be put back into the runes and take forward that which was lost to us but by hard diligent research and fact-finding found again by those who dare with certainty. You will then be able to see for yourself that over 90% of the New Age runic books and websites are completely inaccurate and virtually useless.