Uncle Thor's Lessons, Anecdotes and Humor


Rune Musings: The Dag Rune – Rise and Fall of Light and Darkness

Dag – Rise and Fall of Light and Darkeness

Calendars have their uses, but sometimes we lose sight because of them. When we consult a calendar, we see a day. There is a twenty-four hour period of time divided into day and night. And that is where we stop. One day equals daytime and night: one and the other.

The reality is that a day is not a single, absolute thing. It is a process of dawn to noon through afternoon to dusk and the dead of night to twilight and then dawn again. Except for the North and South Pole, the day is not an absolute, nor a pair of absolutes. The change at both ends is twilight – “two-light” – a blend of light and darkness as one gives way to the other.

For some things, it is useful to see the Dag Rune as being two absolutes, just it there are situations where one does best to see Day and Night as complementary. For others, we need to consider Day and Night as cyclical processes of growing and waning light followed by increasing and diminishing darkness. The day is a process and for most of us, we live through that process. Breakfast to lunch to dinner. Waking to work and then back home. Relaxing after dinner to going to bed to awakening. Many of the things we do and when we do them are determined by the passage of the day. When we eat and what we eat follow the daily schedule. The early day breakfast differs from the mid-day lunch, which differs from late day dinner. Our sleep, our daily travel and our activities follow the process of day and night.

Most of us live according to the rising and waning of the light. Our schedules are geared to the process that begins with Dawn, changes at Dusk, and resumes with the next Dawn. Our lives are more attuned to the daily cycle than many had realized.

There is a practical precedent for this. It is hard to do farm work in the dark of night. It is also hard to hunt at night. We work when it is possible under the best conditions, and rest when we cannot work. This is reflected in how we live even to this day.

Consider the ramifications. The daily cycle determines work schedules, which subsequently affects commuting. Train and bus schedules are written to coincide with the greatest movement of people. This movement is based heavily on making the best advantage of the day. The roads and rails are busiest in the daytime. Late at night, there is little commuter traffic because fewer travel during the darkest hours. Even our electric use is affected by the time of day. The greatest use of electricity is during the day. Utility companies have to plan for the hours of greatest usage. At night, use of electricity drops considerably. Most businesses are closed at night. The dark hours tend to be cooler, thereby demanding less use of air conditioners in summer. All is affected by passage of daytime and night time.

On one level, the Dag Rune is a balance of opposites. On another, it is a process of moving gradually from one extreme to the next. We do not jump from light to dark. Daylight fades into darkness, and darkness fades into light.

Ponder this gradual aspect of the Dag Rune. It brings to light other facets of this Rune which can be given practical application.


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