/EE-sahz/ Old Norse: Iss – ice Old English: Is – ice Gothic: Eis – ice

Ice in Scandinavia is way more than snowflakes, frostwork on windows, or icicles on the roof's edge. Scandinavian ice is power. It comes in blocks, ridges, and mounds that can smash ships. It comes in blizzards that can lead astray and bury even the most experienced traveler. And it also comes as the many-feet-thick cover that is very safe and even convenient to tread. Ice is a force that cannot be defeated, but that can conquer anything it comes in contact with.

Ice is water that has achieved the utmost solidity. And so is ISAZ. It is the ultimate form of matter. Nothing can withstand its might. ISAZ is tangible, solidified, inert, and overpoweringly forceful. However, its force is not that of an acute mind, willpower, or emotional depth. The ISAZ rune is the embodiment of the might of the material world. There are superior forces that rule ISAZ, but only until it comes down upon you with all its hard-hitting strength. It may not break your spirit or conquer your mind - but is it so important if it is going to crumple your physical shell like a candy wrapper?

ISAZ is the rune of suspension, of forced halt. As long as ISAZ is present in your reading, you won't be able to move at the same pace you did before. Everything that surrounds you will resist your forward movement, and your progress will slow down. 

However, hindrance is not the only superpower ISAZ has. The rune may also give you one of the most exceptional opportunities - a chance for fulfillment. Compared to ISAZ, every other rune seems shallow and unfounded. ISAZ does not push forward, it's devoid of haste. But this slowness of movement allows for building a firm material foundation for the world. 

Norse myth says that the icy land of Niflheim is one of the creators of life on Earth, and quite rightly so. It needed an impulse, that's true. Still, the impulse required to be applied to something powerful enough to create the world, and that powerful place was the land of icy ISAZ. 

ISAZ is the rune of a physical, solid plane, the rune of embodiment. It's the force that gives shape and order to your ideas. It helps your chaotic thoughts and emotions to slow down and assemble into a significant and vital Something.

Other runes may be more energetic and easy to maneuver, they may offer more opportunities. But the power of ISAZ is beyond any limit you can imagine because ISAZ is more than a thought - it is the embodiment of a thought. 

The direct position of the rune is the same as the reversed position

ISAZ is one of the irreversible runes. It's also one of the Great Runes of Delay. You cannot deny or reject its power.

The fundamental meanings ISAZ brings are stagnation and obstacles. If you were looking for advice, ISAZ tells you not to beat your head against the wall. Stay patient. It's easier said than done, but you need to understand that you just have to wait. For how long? Nobody can tell you. But you need to be patient, maybe even step away from what you've been doing (or the thing you required advice with). 

ISAZ indicates a spiritual standstill. You are stuck in a rut, and you don't even know how or why you got here. Lay low. Success is out of the question at the moment. You needn't be persistent in achieving it because it's completely meaningless. The situation requires you to be patient and soft. Please note, though, that ISAZ cannot be reversed. It combines stagnation and growth, but your growth is hidden from the prying eye, and you need to wait before you can see the actual results of it. Your inner resources are more abundant than you think, but you will only see their wealth if you stop expecting too much of yourself. Let your life develop quietly, let it gain meaning, and you'll see it all a bit later.

In general, ISAZ stands for a stop you need to make before entering a new - and fortunate - stage of your life. Your business is running slack, there are obstacles in your way, your wishes do not seem to come true anytime soon. Your situation can be described as a period of latent development that comes before a real renaissance. If you are used to moving fast and forward, you may find it especially hard to see this rune in your reading if you are success-driven. A lack of grand boast-worthy victories seems like a defeat, which can be quite depressing. But you can't feel desperate right now. You are like a plant, growing slowly underground, to come to the surface and rise in full bloom. Your successes cannot be easily seen at the moment, but your life is not on hold. Soon, very soon, Dame Fortune will smile upon you!

Your spiritual life is icebound. You may find yourself sunk up to the eyebrows in a situation that you are unable to process. You can feel powerless and able to do nothing but to succumb, step down, or even sacrifice a long-coveted thing, dream, or plan. Be patient during this time because it is a period of hidden growth that precedes a breakthrough. Any achievement or success is currently high unlikely.  Do not hope for or rely on a friendly hand. Try to keep your will strong without suppressing it too much.

Runic Advice

Keep calm and wait for the hefty slab of ice blocking your path to slowly melt and flow away. Do not fuss about - it will be meaningless because the conflicting forces surrounding you are a thousand times stronger than you are. Just you wait, and the sun will shine upon you. Do not start anything new, put your plans aside until a more beneficial time.

If a person you know is behaving in the way described below, pay close attention to this part of the reading:

The person is hiding inside their shell, emotionally inert, unwilling to establish contact, or take part in anything. They stick to an essential minimum and are preoccupied with their own thoughts and feelings.

Tip: Do not try to tug this person, do not be a bother. They are fragile right now, but fragile things, like shards of glass or ice, can hurt very deeply. Sit this uncertain period out and let the person mellow. 

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