thurisaz rune of adversity

Thurisaz Rune

thurisaz rune of adversity

Thurisaz – Rune of Adversity

The Thurisaz rune is known as ‘thurs’ in Old Norse. Thurs means frost giant and in Sweden we know them as rimturse/-tursar. This is a rune of adversity. The ancient gods were always battling the giants who were destructive primal forces. It is in the alchemy between the potentially destructive elements of ice and fire that creation takes place according to ancient Norse wisdom. We must keep the balance to preserve creation and to keep this balance we must at times do battle.

Stripped back meaning based on the actual word and shape

The shape of the Thurisaz rune is like a thorn and it can certainly indicate a thing or a person appearing as a thorn in one’s side. However, ‘As within, so without’… Look at the thing which is irritating you, or is causing you to feel angry, within yourself and you will be able to release resentment and find peace. Thurisaz can also represent anger channelled in a positive way – as a force for breaking free from destructive patterns and anything that is holding us back.

In ancient Sweden, it was taken for granted that not all would survive the winter. That is because there often wasn’t enough food to feed everyone. Conditions were harsh in general with freezing temperatures well below zero for months on end. The consensus was to push those thought too frail to live through the long cold winter over a cliff known as ‘ättestupa.’

One way of looking at this rune is through the acceptance of life’s harsh realities and understanding that not all the choices we will have to make are going to be pleasant. It is what is for the highest good that matters. Luckily, the consensus today is that we NOT through our frail and elderly over a cliff – May it be forever so 🙂


  • Polarity: Masculine
  • Zodiac correspondences: Mars, Scorpio, Jupiter
  • Tarot card correspondences: The Chariot, 5 of Wands, 5 of Cups, 5 of Swords, 5 of Pentacles, The Wheel of Fortune
  • Archangel correspondences: Archangel Camael (Mars), Archangel Sachiel (Jupiter)
  • Chakra correspondences: Third chakra aka solar plexus chakra
  • Health: Liver, eyes, male sexual organs, heart

Divinatory Meanings

General: resistance, adversity, pushing through blocks, choosing our battles wisely – reversed: depression, resentment, impotence

Love & relationships: dynamic relationship, sparring partners – reversed: a relationship that only brings grief, your love life blocks you from moving forward

Health/wellbeing: explosive strength, healthy expression of anger, scratches and breakages – reversed: grief impacts the health, poor nutrition, not eating enough

Business: tough competition  – reversed: bad partnership, enemies posing as friends

Holistic Healing Tips for Thurisaz

Thurisaz showing up in a reading is a good time to address any anger issues that may be draining the seeker of energy. If the anger is used in a destructive way, counsel the seeker to transform it into a positive power to use for breaking through blocks and barriers instead. Look carefully at if the anger is being directed toward others or if it is turned in on the Seeker. Depression can be thought of as anger that one has swallowed instead of expressed.

If this is a central rune in a reading, it could mean that the Seeker is facing a situation where she feels she has to choose the lesser of two evils. If this is the case, use your wisdom to guide the Seeker to making a choice for the Highest Good and to consider carefully the long-term (possibly karmic) effect of their choice.

Either way, acceptance of one’s emotions is key at this difficult and trying time. There is no shame in feeling anger or grief. Allowing these feelings to flow freely stops them from festering and speeds up healing. Wallowing could be an issue – Don’t be afraid to address it.

In some cases, for Seekers who really struggle with assertiveness, it can be helpful to hold this rune over the solar plexus chakra while chanting OOR-ee-sahz.


  • I accept my feelings of anger and love myself completely.
  • I accept my feelings of grief and love myself completely.
  • I choose what is for the Highest Good.
  • I have no enemies, only sparring partners.
  • I assert my rights with kindness and respect for others.
  • Life’s tests temper me and make me stronger.

To strengthen the effect of the affirmation, you can draw the Thurisaz rune over a glass of water. Say the affirmation out loud while holding the glass. Then drink it mindfully to flush out any residual blocks to moving through adversity with hope and confidence.

Thurisaz Prayer

Dear Mother-Father God, Thank you for strength enough to handle any situation that brings adversity into my life. Help me to always choose the path or option that leads to the Highest Good for All. Thy will be done. Amen

Try the Thurisaz Bane of Obstacles Tarot Spread!


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