What is Divination?
Since time immemorial, humans have sought to predict important events before they happen. Early man and women studied the night sky, weather patterns, and animal behaviours to identify signs and patterns, then interpreted the subtle nuances supplied by nature to foretell upcoming occurrences. Gifted individuals found they could read signs and symbols easier than others; these individuals became the medicine men and women, shamans, oracles, druids, and gurus that others sought out to assist them with spiritual matters. Over time, cultures around the world, such as Egyptians, Celts, Romans, Native Americans, and Chinese, developed diverse rituals and traditions for divining the future these traditions form the basis for divination methods used today. Simply stated, divination is the practice of predicting the future using specialised tools and rituals. This article explores some of the various divination methods that have survived into modern times.
The definitive origins of the Tarot are unknown; however, documentation exists from the mid-fifteenth century indicating that specialised decks of cards were used for divination in Italy. Unlike a standard deck of playing cards, the Tarot deck consists of 78 cards instead of 52 four suits of 14 cards each (the minor arcana) plus 22 trump cards (the major arcana). The four suits, wands, cups, swords, and pentacles, represent the four elements of fire, water, air, and earth respectively.
Each card in the minor arcana is assigned a specific set of meanings based on the symbolism within the images on the face of the cards these meanings serving more as guidelines for the Tarot reader versus static definitions. While the cards in the minor arcana typically represent day-to-day events, people, and emotions, the cards in the major arcana represent major life issues that affect a client's career, relationships, and spiritual path.
The Tarot remains one of the most widely used and accessible divination tools to this day. Over the centuries, countless Tarot card decks have been created celebrating diverse cultures, art forms, and systems of esoteric thought.
One of the oldest and most widely consulted forms of divination, astrology is the study of how the positions of the stars and planets at the time of our birth shape our personalities and how the orbits of these heavenly bodies continue to affect us daily. For centuries, astrologers have divided the heavens into a wheel to map the movements of planets. This wheel, called the zodiac, consists of twelve segments (or houses), with an astrological sign assigned to each segment. As the planets and satellites in our solar system complete their orbits, they pass through the houses of the zodiac and exert distinct influences over humanity.
When asked, most people know which sign of the zodiac they were born under and what traits are associated with that sign. On a more advanced level, experienced astrologers craft detailed charts plotting the positions of the planets, stars, and the moon at given points in time. It is believed that a planets location in a house of the zodiac influences energy on earth and thereby can be used to predict events before they happen. These predictions, known as horoscopes, can range in detail from a few lines (as seen in daily newspapers) to complex collections of charts and narratives explaining situations for an individual, a city, a nation, or the entire world.
For thousands of years, humanity has used the gifts of the earth to divine the future. Stones and crystals are natural energy transmitters, both absorbing and releasing energy which can be "read" by sensitive individuals. Using crystals to transmit and amplify energy increases psychic awareness and helps clarify psychic messages.
Probably the most popular and effective crystals used for divinatory purposes are clear quartz crystal and amethyst. Clear quartz, whether formed into a sphere, wand, or point, is excellent for meditation, healing, and cleansing negative energy. Psychics often use clear quartz to amplify their natural abilities, focus their psychic awareness, and create a field of positive, healing energy around themselves. Likewise, amethysts are ideal for creating a positive atmosphere conducive to meditation and spiritual awareness. Psychics keep amethyst nearby to protect themselves from negative energy, improve clairvoyance, and make contact with spirit guides on a higher plane.
The historical roots of palmistry are lost, however it is known that mankind has used hands, faces, and other body parts as divinatory sources for millennia. Of these body-reading techniques, palmistry is still widely used today. Palmistry adherents believe that the lines, creases, and markings on the palms of our hands and fingers reveal aspects of our personalities as well as foretell upcoming events. Rather than just random lines and wrinkles, palm readers believe that you hold the story of you past, present, and future in the palm of your hand.
The subtle art form of palm reading is significantly more complex than the commonly held fallacy long life line equates to long life time. Palm readers take into consideration the multitude of lines all over your palm, as well as the shape of your fingers, knuckles, fingernails, and many other attributes of your hands. The three most immediately identifiable lines are:
- Heart Line The first line below the middle, ring, and little finger. This line reveals matters of the heart and emotions, including the number and duration of marriages, how you express yourself emotionally and romantically, and how your emotions affect your daily life.
- Head Line The horizontal line in the centre of your palm. This line reveals the state of your intellect, creativity, and your personal philosophy.
- Life Line The line that curves from the left side of your hand to the wrist. This line reveals your physical disposition, vitality, and the general path your life takes.
During the time of Pythagoras, the famous Greek mathematician, numbers were used not only for calculations, but for divining the future as well. Numbers were assigned specific properties and characteristics, and when certain numbers or number patterns were encountered (such as a date), these properties would determine if the numbers represented an auspicious or inauspicious event. Major decisions, such as when to complete sales of property or hold a wedding, were not made until consulting the numbers.
As numerology progressed, each letter of the alphabet was assigned a number from zero to nine. The sum of the numbers in a name predicted a persons personality traits and success in life. Modern numerologists use this summing technique to help clients understand themselves, their spiritual path, and how other numbers found in names and dates interact with their own numbers.
While no single authoritative source defines the characteristics associated with the numbers zero through nine, a general guideline follows:
- 0 the source of all things; the beginning
- 1 individuality; leadership
- 2 balance; the "love" number
- 3 communication; messages
- 4 practical; organized
- 5 action; flexible and open-minded
- 6 caring; nurturing; the "mother" number
- 7 spirituality; higher-consciousness; knowledge
- 8 power; authority
- 9 completion; highly evolved; humanitarian
Given the many divination choices listed here (and the countless others not listed), psychic readers and tarot readers certainly have some choices to make to determine how they want to channel their gifts. In my case, both the Tarot and unaided clairvoyant readings are my specialty. My innate talents enable me to receive impressions and messages from your personal energy field. Leveraging my psychic ability, I can also read Tarot cards to further clarify and focus the energy impressions I receive.