Thurisaz – Rune Meaning

“If we must fight for peace then let us find our peace in battle.”

Thurisaz – “Thor-is-as” – Literally: “Thurses” or “Giants” – Esoteric: Strong one, Resistance

Key Concepts: Unconscious forces, sociological forces, Thor, Loki as giant, chaos, destruction by natural forces, complexities of aggression, conflicts, disputes, psychological problems,  lightning, breakthrough, aggressive male sexuality, battering down barriers, thorn of awakening, trouble, enthusiasm

Psi: enthusiasm, struggle against unconsciousness, male sexual prowess

Energy: enthusiasm, self-empowerment, chaos, active defensive force, breaker of resistance, destructive storms

Mundane: storms, tools, weapons, conflict

Reactive force, directed force, vital eroticism, regenerative catalyst, constructive conflict; or danger, defenselessness, compulsion, betrayal, dullness, disease, explosive violence, annoyance, strife

Destruction of enemies, curses binds and fetters
Awakening of the will to action
Breaking resistance of blockages in body, mind and spirit
Increased potency and prowess in romantic relationships
Understanding of the division and separation of all things
Aiming the use of psychic force
The combination of right/left brain processes for generating powerful realization

My Notes:

It’s not uncommon for the rune meaning of Thurisaz to be described as a thorn that is most sharp, a grim and evil thing to take grip on or touch. However, it is representative of Thor and his hammer, protecting Asgard from the thurses, giants who resist the expansion of consciousness throughout the multiverse. In every respect, the energies of Thurisaz are a forceful enemy of unconsciousness, ignorance and the rule of brute violence. Thurisaz represents the warrior that combines consciousness and wisdom with matters requiring force. Thor is the champion god of courageous and free human beings and the ultimate physical fighting force.

Thurisaz is also a fertility rune in the sense that it breaks down the barren and hard, rocky realms into workable soil as to bring fruitfulness to crops and wombs. The best mental state for working with the rune is enthusiasm, rather than anger or fear, as the former will much better sustain right awareness and diminish the potential danger of dealing with strong Thurisaz magic.

This early rune is representative of the use of tools and technology (so is KENAZ, to an extent), whether physical or psychological, especially as weapons of protection or active resistance against forces detrimental to the expansion of consciousness and awareness signified by DAGAZ. Human consciousness is a state of mind that evolved from pre-existing state of unconscious which continually strives to re-establish itself. Unless we promote consciousness actively in living out our lives we will succumb to entropy.

The power of Thurisaz is easily located because it is on the borderline, the frontier of consciousness. It is wise to never start a fight, but if one has started, be sure to finish it.

29 thoughts on “Thurisaz – Rune Meaning”

  1. As a lucky charm I think Thurisaz has a lot of potential. Representing Thor (and his hammer Mjolner) it can bestow his power to smash through obstacles and barriers, and protect against hostile enimies and danger. Thor is the strongest of the Aesir, and it is his role to protect both the gods and mankind from the dangers of the giants. It is said that Thor has a mighty temper, and a short fuse (very much akin to Thurisaz energy) so when evoking the powers of Thurisaz, it is important to keep a focused positive mind in order to keep the very potent unconscious instincts of this rune under control. When used like this I have found that Thurisaz is a very positive Rune to work with, especially when getting past the negative energy left around by people that can contaminate an area or idea. That is the wonderful thing about consciously using Runic energy, we can (depnding on our Wyrd) shape which aspects of the Runes manifest, and weather they do so positively or not.

  2. I bear this symbol around my neck every day, a family friend of my mother made two necklaces exactly the same and they were suppose to be good luck charms, but now I know what it is and am a little discouraged but I still wear it with pride.

  3. Hi,
    When it comes down to it- Odin is a Jotunn. His parents were Bor and Bestla, so… makes Thor of Jotunn decent also.

    I see the Aesir more as a ‘tribe’ of Jotunn just as their are other tribes of Jotunns. The only ones I find to be truly different are the Vanir. But that is my own gnosis. I find the Jotunn vs others argument quite interesting as the geneologies are all pretty much derived from the etins in general. Like I said, only the Vanir seem to be truly from a different source though they intermarry as well.

    Just my musings.

  4. I have experienced a very meaningful reading, but am puzzled about one aspect of it. I would appreciate any insight you may give. The reading told me that I am in need of change (Nauthiz) to expect a journey (Raidho), that I would encounter much success (Sowilo) and that I should draw on and be aided by Thurisaz in this experience.

    From what I read, Thurisaz is not a positive influence. I read about the hammer of Thor, Giants, chaos and destructive energy. At best, I understood it to be an influence to be approached with great care and used extremely sparingly. I don’t understand how Thurisaz could come from within me or how I could use it in the course of a very sunny and positive experience.

    1. Stephen:
      Here are a few thoughts that came t me when I read your post:
      There is no question that Thurizaz is a rune to weild with caution. It is, however, a rune of power and it donates a need to ‘prick at’ (thorn) and challenge (sometimes with a hard blow) something around us or within us. Given that your reading primarily indicates a journey of change towards health and wholeness (sowilo), you are likely to encounter a few pricks along the way. I’d suggest the Thurizaz is saying you may need Thor’s courage and also the ability to take or give those ‘pricks’ as required to complete the journey. I’ve often found it to mean a need for confrontation.

      Also, while Sowilo means ultimate success – or at least eventual wholeness with increasing health along the way, I don’t think it denotes and easy journey toward that goal. It is showing you that this is the right pathway, though.
      I hope these thoughts help a little.

  5. In looking into the mythology of Thor, I also did some re-reading on Thurisaz I find Freyer Aswynn, Leaves of Yggdrasil especially helpful on Thurisaz). Most sources portray this rune as ‘grim’ as in the Anglo-Saxon Rune poem; some describe it as entirely evil and best avoided. Aswynn provides a more nuanced view.
    Here is what I think:
    Thurisaz is the rune of elemental instinctual power – therefore, without training our minds, we are barely conscious of it within us. It has the suddenness of thunder and lightening. We can call on it and use it, but the danger is that we are likely to summon and wield this power through anger or fear and without due consideration of the consequences. And any time we hurl Thurisaz there will be consequences! If we call on this rune in petty anger our exaggerated fear, not only may we cause more harm to others than we really meant, but the power will also rebound onto us.
    Aswynn sees Thurisaz as a “war fetter’ for binding powerful enemies when all else fails. She associates Thurisaz with the third ‘charm’ in the Hávamál and I would agree, heavily emphasizing the third line:

    I know a third: in the thick of battle,
    If my need be great enough,
    It will blunt the edges of enemy sword,
    Their weapons will make no wounds

    If my need be great enough. Most of the time t (for example Algiz or Berkana) or take control and re-direct negative energies (such as Raido, Isa, Ehwaz).
    Thurisaz should be used only in desperate situations – in battles with Giants if you like. Even then, more as a threat I think than an action. I have had such an experience once or twice. Instinct has told me that I am facing someone dangerous, who unfettered will do much harm. Instinctively, I have found myself conveying to that person that I am as powerful as they – I literally felt as if I was growing in ‘size’. I didn’t throw Thurisaz at them, I merely conveyed that I could and it worked.
    Alas, when words are my weapon especially, I am also guilty of occasionally throwing a Thurisaz when I should know better. The outcome is never good – it always rebounds and causes far more trouble than the situation actually warranted.
    In a reading, Thurisaz will have as many ‘levels’ and nuances as any other rune and context is everything. Being an elemental power it is associated with raw sexual drive and can represent the very best and very worst of sexual power. It is always about power in some form or other and it should never be taken lightly. Previous comments help to illustrate the complex dark and light of Thurisaz.

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