Tyr-During the day in times of need
Humankind turns towards the sun.
Under the birch, the ice becomes water.
Joy in this sacred space.
The name Tyr (Tiwaz) means "Sky Father" or "Father of the Daytime Sky"and in some circles the name Tyr is associated with the name "God". The stories written about Tyr are few and far between, in the Nordic legends their are only two stories, in my awareness, in which Tyr plays any predominate role. The first one is the classic tale of the Fenris Wolf in which said God volunteers to sacrifice he's left hand for the sake of Asgard. The second is the story in which Tyr and Thor go on a beer run to Tyr's fathers house. These stories do not tell us a lot about the role of the god in Nordic or Germanic society so to understand Tyr one must look at the environment which he's name derives from. The Sky. Their are four phases of sky; night sky, dawn sky, midday sky, and sunset sky. If we add that with the five colors of the sky's transitions; black, indigo, light blue, white and orange. The cumulative number would be nine, the mystical number of the Scandinavian and Germanic peoples. Nine is important for in the mystical thoughts of the Norse, Yggr an other name for Odin, was said to ride a horse through these nine realms were different beings were said to reside. Nine is a number that brakes the ever turning wheels of eight, apoun breaking eight one attains completeness and becomes uninhibited in their path. If we take the first letter of each of these nine phases and apply the runes it would indicated the nine, for lake of a better term, "faces" of the Sky Father.
The first rune is Nyd, the second rune is Dagaz, the third rune is Mannaz meaning man. Sowilo is the fourth meaning sun or sun-wheel, berkanno is the fifth meaning birch tree and is some cases bear. Issa is the sixth rune meaning ice or stillness, lagaz the seventh meaning water or lake. The eighth rune is the wunjo rune meaning pleasure, joy or grape and the last rune is Othin meaning Odin.
Below is a sun-wheel, with these runes on them it's used for chanting and to better understand Tyr. The reason we use the sun-wheel is because the sun appears to travel through the sky giving the above it's color. It is the bringer of knowledge of the Sky Father, the traveler who passes through the above. It's rays give us the knowledge of mind and insight to Tyr.
Berkanno which means birch or is used as short hand for bear is in the northern quadrant. Trees especially birch and apple were sacred to the Norse. The world tree whose branches stretched into the upper sky realm and who's roots dug deep into the lower realm. In some interpretation the berkanna rune is short hand for bear, the constellation of Ursa Major was and is sometimes called the great bear in it's tail resides the north star. The north star is used in navigation and rarely wavers. It is the guiding star, the truest star. Just as Tyr is the god of truth who would presided over matters of state with unbiased wisdom. The issa rune which means ice is the solid state of water, lagaz which falls from the sky in the form of rain. Rain and water is the life force of the planet, all living things who's roots enter the ground and all things that drink need rain. The wunjo rune meaning joy, happiness, or sometime wine; when the sun reaches it's zenith the sky appears white. The midday sun is at it's hottest casting it's life giving rays onto the planet, giving plants the essential element to grow. The Odin rune is a representation of Odin the God of magic and Shamanism. In all cultures that worshiped the sky was the holy man, the one who would communicate with the Sky Father. In that shaman was the ability to project he's mind and soul into the metaphysical realms. The god Odin, as mentioned above, would either ride the horse or send he's mind in the form of Hugen and Munnin into the these realms. The nyd rune, which means need or distress. In the sky there are seven layers, these seven layers of sky are there to protect the planet from the sun harmful rays and asteroids that pelt the planet. Without them the planet would die, in essence we need the sky. The dagaz rune means the daylight which comes from the sun, sowilo. The daylight is what gives the sky it's color, depending on were the sun is in the sky will determine the color of the sky. Mannaz is the last rune this rune means humankind or man. In this context it is the patriarchal nature of sky worship, and represents the dualism of pagan worship. The Sky Father countered and in union with the Earth Mother. To know Tyr is to know the sky for the sky is tangible and tangibility is closer to truth, the love of Tyr second only to war.