Saturday, October 14, 2017

A brief Prognostication concerning Children born any Day of the Week

The child born on Sunday, shall be of long life, and obtain riches.
On Monday. Weak, and of an effeminate temper, which selfom brings a man to honour.
On Tuesday: Worse: though he may, with extraordinary vigilance, conquer the inordinate desires to which he will be subject, still he will be in danger of dying by violence, if he has not great procreation.
On Wednesday. Shall be given to the study of learning, and shall profit thereby.
On Thursday. He shall arrive to great honour and dignity.
On Friday. He shall be of a strong constitution, yet perhaps lecherous.
On Saturday. This is another bad day; but, notwithstanding the child may come to good, though it be seldom: but most children born on this day, are of a heavy, dull and dogged disposition.

Divination in ancient Iran, Persia

By Mahmoud Omidsalar
University of California, Los Angeles

Divination (shogun zadan, fal gereftan, fal zadan, tafa'ol) is the art or technique of gaining knowledge of future events or distant states by means of observing and interpreting signs. Various objects or events may serve as media of divination. Here we discuss only those interpretive acts which have the general structure of "A is a sign of B" (e.g., seeing a black cat is a bad omen).

Classical and early Muslim sources refer to the practice of divination among Persians. Herodotus reports that the Magi interpreted the eclipse of the sun as the waning of the fortune of the Greeks, against whom the Persian king was marching. Agathias refers to the Zoroastrian priests who told the future events by looking into flames.

Ebn al-Nadim refers to a number of Persian works on divination, which seem to have been translated into Arabic. Bala'mi reports that Persians had a book of divination (ketb-e fal) in which they had listed all that they had used for divining during their dominion.

A story reported by Ebn Qotayba of a Persian warlord seems to suggest that Persians wrote names or words on the shafts of their arrows. The inscribed word was interpreted as an omen when an arrow was pulled out to shoot at the enemy.

The same warlord interpreted the actions of his enemy, who changed his mounts from elephant to horse, mule, and donkey, as evidence of his waning fortune. References about divination are scattered throughout Ferdowsi's Shah-namah (Book of Kings):

-- In the story of Alexander the sages divine the demise of the king from the birth of a monstrous child. Khosrow II Parviz divined his own death and the demise of the Sasanian dynasty from the accidental fall of a quince from the top of his throne.

-- A sage forecasts that Persia will fall into chaos during the rule of Shiruyah, because he sees the prince hitting a dried wolf claw against an animal horn.

-- The sage Bozorgmehr (q.v.) divines that the three objects concealed in a box are three pearls, one bored, one half-bored, and one intact. He reaches this insight from his chance meeting on the road with three women, one married and with child, one married and childless, and a virgin.

Meeting with unattractive or deformed individuals was considered a bad omen and such individuals were avoided or even attacked. The aversion to unattractive individuals seems to have been motivated by the belief that outward unattractiveness indicates inward or moral defect, itself a form of divination.

Quite often evil deeds, such as destruction of a Persian city or slaying of a monarch, were attributed to unattractive men who were usually red-headed, green or blue-eyed, hairy, and cross-eyed. These men often had large teeth and noses.

Conversely, a beautiful face was valued as a good omen. The Arscasid king Ardavan reportedly had his concubine Golnar awaken him every morning so that her beautiful face would be the first sight he laid eyes on.

According to pseudo-Khayyam, Persians considered certain plants such as barley as auspicious, and old women used barley in divination. Secondary sources report divination by interpreting the twitching of different parts of the body to be common among Persians.

Ebn al-Nadim lists a book on (Ekhtelaj-e A'za) among the oeuvres of the Persians. In the story of Khosrow o Shirin, the princess interprets the twitching of her del (abdomen, chest) as a sign of impending misfortune, while she expects the twitching of her eyelid to be the sign of some important unknown event.

Divination by means of animals involves not only interpreting their behavior but also any fluctuation in their numbers. Mostawfi relates that the hero Rostam divined that Kay-Khosrow would not be harmed by Afrasiab, when the hero untypically missed a shot taken at a game.

The Islamic period

Permissibility of taking good omens from people's names or chance events has support not only in literary sources but also in some compendia of prophetic traditions. There exist, however, other traditions according to which taking bad omens from random events is prohibited.

The author of Ketab al-wafi writes that whereas seeking guidance (Estekharah) from God by means of the Koran is permissible, divination is not permissible because through it the diviner seeks to gain knowledge of future events, which is an ability reserved for God.

Shi'ite scholars generally look down upon divination, considering it an irrational if not impious act. Mohammad b. Monnawar (pp. 26-27, 175) describes the manner of divination by the Koran. It seems that divination was carried over into Islam from a pre-Islamic tradition.

One of the meanings of the word fal is reported to have been divination by randomly heard names or words. The positive form of this kind of divination, which had prophetic and religious approval, reportedly was practiced by many of the early companions of the prophets and especially by Muslim generals engaged in early conquests.

Diviners were popular among the general populace of Persia and could charge their customers for their services. Many varieties of divination are attested in Persian literature and folk practice. They include interpretation of objects which appear haphazardly, interpretation of involuntary bodily actions (sneezing, twitching, itches, etc.), observing animal behavior, divining by playing cards (fale waraq ) or chick-peas (fal-e nokhod ), bibliomancy (e.g., fal-e Hafez), divination by means of mirrors and lenses (Ayna-bini), observation of the liver of a slain animal (jegar-bini), divination by means of the flame of a lamp, etc.

Bibliomancy using the divan of Hafez is the most popular for this kind of divination, but by no means the only kind. The Koran, as well as the Mathnawi of Rumi may also be used.

Fal-e Hafez may be used for one or more persons. In group bibliomancy, the divan will be opened at random, and beginning with the ode of the page that one chances upon, each ode will be read in the name of one of the individuals in the group. The ode is the individual's fal.

Assigning of the odes to individuals depends on the order in which the individuals are seated and is never random. One or three verses from the ode following each person's fal is called the shahed, which is read after the recitation of the fal.

Kat-bini is another form of divination in which the shoulder bone of a sacrificial sheep is "read." The sheep should be slaughtered at a moon-lit night in the name of the person for whom divination is being performed. Both the slaughterer and the seeker's clothing and persons should be ritually clean.

The animal should be slaughtered close to running water and its right shoulder bone taken. The bone should be carefully cleared of flesh without getting scratched or damaged by the knife. When reading the bone (presumably the next day), the diviner should sit with his back to the sun, paying attention to every detail.

A number of other types of divination are reported in the classical sources, e.g., divination by reading of the palm and by looking at the manner in which mice have gnawed something.

Folk tradition

Certain things, colors, or events are considered auspicious or inauspicious in Persian folk tradition. Shooting stars may be good or bad omens, but they usually presage someone's death. The number thirteen and certain days of the week, howling of dogs, braying of a sitting donkey, and untimely crowing of cocks are signs of misfortune or death.

A widespread belief considers a single sneeze to be a sign that one must stop whatever one is doing. This is called sabr Amad (patience is in order). A double sneeze is a sign that one should speed up whatever one is doing.

One of the most common folk practices concerns divination by a twitching of ones eyelids which may be auspicious or inauspicious depending on whether it occurs in the left or the right eye and in the upper or the lower eyelid.

The folk practice uses virtually everything in the environment, from animals, to the behavior of children, weather, insects, and even the chance movements of smoke rising from a fire, as a means of divination. There is an ethnic Persian group called Maraghian, who are also called also kalla-bozi (lit. goat-head) by their detractors because of their skill in divination by studying the severed heads of goats.

Persians believe that certain days are especially good for divination. During the last Wednesday of the year, called Chaharshanba-suri, divination, especially by listening to the conversations of the passers by and interpreting that which is heard (falgiri) as a sign is quite common. Fortunetellers, (falgir), who are mostly gypsies, are still active in some parts of Persia.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Gipsy's Answer spread

Gipsy's Answer

The cards 1, 2 and 3 are the response to your question
9, 8 and 10 are about the past, 11, 4 and 12 are about the future
7, 6 and 5 are about now
and 13 is The Crown - road to happiness

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Life Path Spread

If a card jumps from the deck while shuffling, it's important! read it, think about it.

1. the situation, where you are at, your greatest strength. This is what you have already.
2. what you need to know, what you need to do about the situation.

The Life Path spread

Pick 7 cards in a little pile in front of you.
Remember that the card closest the table is the one you picked first, and the #1 card

1. you, your strength, something you have, something about you, your character, your resources - you already have everything you need
2. your life
3. something that supports your happiness
4. an obstacle you need to overcome, something you need to work on, something you need to do in order to overcome any obstacles
5. message from angels
6. message from your guides
7. message from your heart
If you "accidentally" picked too many cards, put the excess in the middle of the reading
This is something that will support your growth, your journey

Friday, October 6, 2017

Rain divination

A Simple Rain Divination

When rain is falling lightly outside do the following:

On a flat surface such as a pie pan or cookie sheet, sprinkle an even layer of powdered spice, such as cinnamon. When the surface is completely covered to an even depth take it outside and stand in the rain. Ask your question and then run back inside. The raindrops will have disturbed the spice to etch patterns or symbols into it. Sit quietly and gaze at the spice until you have perceived the answer.

(You can also use this with flour, salt, sugar, sand or any other cheaper material than spices.)

Scott Cunningham's Earth Power

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Chris' 13 card layout

Meanings of each card:
1. Past
2. Present
3. Future
4. The situation at the moment
5. Combines Past-Present-Today
6. Past+Present
7. The future according to past and present
8. Positive energies
10. The reason of the problem
11. More information on the present
12. Your talents, what you can do about it
13. More information on the situation at the moment

1+5+6+10 Reason of the problem
2+6+11 Karma
3+7+12 Future
3+8+12 What we can do in the future
4+8+13 The future according to the present energies

Card 9 is the result, the outcome and is read at the end of the reading.

Monday, October 2, 2017

The Tanrıdna Layout

This is a layout called Tanridna (Goddess)

It has an interesting order of laying out the cards. You do it in crosses. First the significator. Then above, below, left and right. Then left up, right down, right up, left down, and you continue with this again and again until you have three rows of nine cards on the table; 27 cards. The significator doesn't have a number, which is why the 27th card you put on the table has number 26, and card number 27 is in the middle. You put the last card on the significator upside down, to read it last, after you have read everything else.

S is the significator. Usually people choose a card from the "court" to represent the person, but Katina apparently used her own picture.

How to read this? 

In this spread everything is connected. The cards next to other cards directly influence each other, but all the cards that touch each other impact the reading. Cards that are over a card have more power than cards that are under a card.
So you read this "in crosses", five cards forming ✙ or X. You can also read it "in triangles", like [9, 3, 11] or [17, 21, 9] or squares, like [7, 13, 4, 10]
Now, this is done only if you don't think you have enough information. There is no need to complicate things.

You start the reading by reading what the Querent stands on; the cards 8, 2 and 6. 2 is directly under the feet of the Querent.
These cards indicate things that have already happened but very recently - these are the things the divination stands on, the foundation, but also what the Querent tramples under her feet. 8 is about the influences in the past and 6 about the influences in the future. This is the IMMEDIATE past and future, mind you!
These cards are called "taxes, payment, tribute" by Mara Meimaridi, the creator of this deck. It stands for fears and worries and anxiety and yearning. This is the reason for the reading. This is what the Querent wants to know, these are the fears and worries the Querent wants to alleviate, or the wishes, dreams, aspirations and yearnings the Querent wants to satisfy.

Then you read what's above the Querent's head, cards 3, 1 and 7. These are the thoughts occupying the Querent's mind, that are related to this question.
1 indicates something essential to the reading and 5 and 7 support it. 1 is usually an event or a person and 5 and 7 are emotions, mood, influence, how "it feels".

After that you read diagonally - 5 and 6, 7 and 8. These are still feelings, fears, thoughts, hopes, wishes, worries, what's going on in your head.

After that you will read the immediate future and the immediate past; cards 4 and 3. This is something that has happened or will happen within 10 days, probably even less time than that, more like "yesterday" and "tomorrow".

You read these cards with the cards under and above them, 4, 6 and 7; 3, 5 and 8.

The "foot row", the row under everything, can be read in two different ways; it can be a support, the ground you build on, or it can be what is being trampled on, ignored, oppressed, suppressed. In general this row indicated underlying, subconscious influences, hidden feelings and motifs.
The "head row", cards above the middle line are strong influences or extra information, and the effect is stronger than the middle line card - so if the mid card is negative and the top card positive, then the even is positive; if the mid card is positive but the top card negative, then the event is negative

After you read the immediate past, 3, you will read the timeline, the mid row past, from the first card on the row, 21 through 13 and 9, to 3.  It is a straight timeline; the left-most card (21) is the defining moment in your life that started the line of events leading to this moment and causing the Querent to ask this question. It caused 19, that lead to 9, and 3 is a direct consequence of that.
The cards above and under these define them. It is possible to read the row on top as this as well - 23 being the defining moment, 17 following from it, then 11 and leading to 5.
(You can also read both timelines and understand that they are inherently combined. One timeline wouldn't have happened without the other.)

So - the image above with Deste cards is a real reading I did. One can read it like this:
23 - camel reversed - lack of resources, poverty
lead to 17 - ruby reversed - broken heart - lead to 11 - ring reversed - problems in marriage - lead to 5 - key - getting out of the "jail" of obsessive thinking, problems, heartache, problems in marriage etc.
21 - Parsadra - the Bitch who talks too much - lead to 15 - Zara reversed - someone who will hurt you, cause trouble, not help you, which lead to 9 - Vaalinde, which eventually caused 3 - serpent reversed - the "snake" bit you in self defence, not to hurt you.

(I'll take the underlying cards as well, to further define the meaning
26 - owl reversed "If this card appears on another person of the Deste cards during a reading, then it means that this person is crude, and illiterate." - it refers to a person who doesn't know what she's talking about, but believes she knows everything.
20 - Assyranta reversed - untrustworthy woman, "bad mother"
14 - Nile - work, fertility, bliss
8 - Emerald reversed - success, victory, but it will take time and it is somewhat limited)

So, combined;

lack of resources, directly associated with the bad-mouthing bitch, who thinks she knows everything, but knows nothing. (I know who this is, and she really is a stupid bitch.)
lead to
broken heart, problems in love due to an untrustworthy woman (I know who this is. I trusted her when I shouldn't have, and I did break my heart.)
this lead to problems in marriage, depression, sadness, misery, pain and really terrible, horrible time in my life - but it was all standing on the "work" card, which promises bliss from work.
This lead to a lot of good things. Because I worked my butt off to save my marriage and my sanity and peace of mind, I "got out of the jail", I realized these people were hurting me out of ignorance, lack of kindness and fear, not because they intended to hurt me, and even when it took time, I am victorious.

Remember that all this has already happened. 

Cards on the left stand for past, cards on the right stand for future.
The cards in the past ARE in the past, it has already happened. So if you get "negative" cards there, you don't need to worry, it has already happened.

The last column is carved in stone. This will happen and nothing in the world can change that. (It is possible that you misinterpret it, and will understand what it really meant only when it happens, but it will happen.)

Now, when you have read all that, you will turn the card number 27, the card over your significator card right way. This is the Destiny. This is the outcome. It is NOT read associated with the cards next to it, it is connected with everything. It is sort of on a layer of its own. It is a general "keyword" to the reading if you so wish.

After this you pick one of the Tzans or Helper Spirits. This gives you advice on what you should do to get the best possible outcome for you. This is direct advice. Selana here says "Like the moon is changing, you have to change. Think positive, enjoy everyday life, be grateful" Count your blessings. Be grateful for what you have, now, and don't waste your happiness in dreaming about things that might have been. "If you do this", she says, "I promise you bliss".

With Katina's Deck it is not only acceptable but advisable to ask for more information by turning more cards. For example, let's say that I want to know more about who Assyranta is in the reading. I ask the deck that, turn a card, and get Tagral. Now, Tagral is "the provider" or "the boss". This gives me enough information to know for sure who Assyranta is.
Now, every card you turn after the layout is about the future, even when it's about cards that are telling about the past. Now, this specific woman is not relevant in my future (most likely), but there are people who are in the same position as she was and I believe that refers to all those people - meaning also, that the specific woman was not just that specific woman, but also what she represented.

You can ask as many defining questions as you like, and use all the cards in the deck. Usually one doesn't need to use more than the 29 cards (27 cards in the layout, significator and Tzan), but you can use all 68 cards if you feel you need to.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Katina's Deck

I have a new love in my life... The Deste deck. :-)
Some time ago a friend posted pictures of her "fortune telling themed junk journal", and I wanted to have my own.
So I started looking for images to be used as decoration.
Found an eBay listing about "Greek tarot, oracle and fortune telling decks". Really nice ones, the seller had several listings, with several decks in each, but way too expensive for me. Anyway, one of these decks was Katina's Deste. Deste means deck of cards, a pile, but it has become to stand for this specific oracle deck.
I started looking for information about this deck. It looked interesting. I found some videos on YouTube. (The ones everyone else English speaking person finds, from Demetra, Chris and Kelly.)

Now, I know some (very little) Greek and Turkish, and I am quite proficient in using Google Translate. So I found this: Katina Fortune Telling Cards
 She says that the deck is sentient and will find you. That it will make the meeting between you and it happen. That somehow the events in your life lead you to it. The deck chooses you. You don't choose it. If it hasn't chosen you, and you somehow "force" your way to it - like, for example, you read my blog, and are interested in divination, and find this deck interesting, you will order the deck (many ways of getting it, like, and watch the videos and join the Facebook group and do your best to understand, but the deck didn't invite you - it won't open for you, and it will be just a deck of cards. Of course you can use it, and will get something, but if it wants to work with you, you will get everything. It is seriously powerful.

Now, a true invitation is more than just finding out about the deck as another way of divination. People have been dreaming about the deck. People feel they know it already when they see it. People get "accidental scrying experience" when they touch the cards. You are given the deck without any action from your side. 

Deste also arranges that you will get a teacher, you will come into contact with other "Destructors" or "Desticis" (Deck Creator or Collector, Manifester, really, because the Deck isn't created, it is made into reality, someone channels the images; or Deck Reader), and other decks. (A bit like Crystal Skulls, here... :-D)

Also, there is an apprentice period. The deck will test you, your perseverance, your aptitude, your obedience and respect... if it finds you worthy, it will start teaching you.
I mean... It is communicating with me. And I am moved to tears by my awe and gratitude. Seriously. I mean... I am almost 50, a middle-aged woman, who has studied divination since I was 10. I am a hereditary witch of an old Finnish strain. I should know this already. And it's "just a deck of cards". It's not a sentient entity. But... the deck of cards is just a... pale manifestation of the Deck. The Deck itself is somewhere out there, and the pieces of cardstock are a means of communication manifested by the need.

Now, to some people this might feel very scary and "demons are trying to contact you!!" kind of thing, but I know when demons are trying to contact me and this is not it. But, you don't need to listen to me, listen to your own guts and heart. They will tell you what is true.

I have found that the deck is very kind, tolerant, patient and forgiving. As long as you respect it and are willing to learn, it will teach you, but it also has a sense of humor. It will "punish" you a little every time you get a bit cocky and start thinking "it's just a deck of cards, and I will use it as I like". :-D

I love this deck. It's like a long gone ancestor trying to contact me. Like a spirit guide.

Now, I want to add some cards to this deck. That is the significator card. I want to leave the personnage of the deck to Deste to tell me things.
These are significators from the Kazanlar deck. I want something like that.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Russian Solitaire tiles

Some time ago (1992) there was a "new and interesting deck of cards" introduced to the Western market. Russian Gypsy Fortune Telling Cards.

Now, this "deck" didn't got much popularity, because people were confused by the use of words like "cards" and "deck". These aren't cards or a deck of cards. These are tiles. This is more like a puzzle than a tarot layout. Some people find that very confusing and difficult, don't get at all how to read these, find the swirling unnecessary complication and stupid. To me this appeals a lot, and I am very impressed by how much some simple symbols say!

In this deck there are 25 tiles divided in four, fours are made of half of a picture. The divination is akin to reading tea leaves. You lay out the tiles in a square, five by five, and see if any images are completed. If not, you didn't get that symbol in "your teacup". Some times you get no symbols at all. It's like picking an empty rune in rune casting. It's not a good day to divine, you are breaking rules and asking the same question too soon, or there just isn't anything of importance to be told to you.

The symbols are somewhat similar to the LeNormand symbols, but some are different, even totally opposite. I could post a shortlist of the meanings, but I won't, because that would be infringing copyright, because miss Touchkoff has written her own version and understanding of the symbols, they are not exactly like the Russian general divinatory symbols.
(BTW; her name sounds more like toots-coff than touch-khov. It's t, ou like in you, ch and k like in Chekhov, off like in off - so it's not "ov" like in Chekhov, but "off". Actually it's exactly like in Chekhov, but she chose to write it "off", so f it is. In fact, it would be better to put in the f in Chekhov as well. Because that's how Russians pronounce the -ov, -of, -off ending of their names.)

Now, this doesn't really matter, if you have learned anything from this blog :-D YOU create your symbols. The universe will align to suit you, and will force the tiles to mean what you think they mean... But - I would recommend you get the book to learn the "correct" meaning of the symbols. After all, the "deck" creators made it with intention, and that matters. It might take some time for the universe to adjust and assimilate this deck to your world of symbols. Also, I think it's interesting to create new associations and increase one's collection of symbols.

There are several good reviews of this deck and some general advice on how to use it.
Layout and sample reading
How to Do a Reading
and here is an interactive free layout online - it shuffles and lays out the cards for you, and you can turn the cards in place to get the symbols, but it doesn't tell you what the cards mean.

Why I am talking about Russian solitaire tiles is that this is an actual Russian divination method, and they call it "solitaire" or "patience". And there are A LOT of different decks produced in Russia...
Take a look at this thread: They are posting photos of the different decks and lists of the meanings of the symbols. It's in Russian, but you can google translate it, if you wish.

Now, I have learned so much about this divination method lately, and would like to share with you some of my insights and ideas.

It matters how much you need to move the cards to get the symbols.
If the symbols come upright and connected right away, this is a strong symbol, important message, and a significant part of the answer.
If the symbols are broken, this implies blockage or denial, someone is trying to hide things.

You read the symbols in order - from left upper corner to right down corner, from left to right.  Note that you read the SYMBOLS, not the TILES - there are five rows of TILES, 9 rows of SYMBOLS.

Horizontal rows trump the vertical ones - so if a card would make a symbol both horizontally and vertically, you make the horizontal symbol and read the vertical symbol as something that would have happened if the horizontal symbol hadn't happened.

If there are tiles that would make a symbol but are separated in the same column or row, it means that that could have happened, was about to happen, but didn't, won't. For example, there is the ring in the first tile on the row, and also on the fourth tile, it means that the person thought of proposing but changed his/her mind.

Also, the tiles next to a connected symbol offer more information about the situation. Now, the images on cards that make connections are always the same, BUT THEY ARE NOT IN THE SAME POSITIONS ON THE LAYOUT NOR TO THE CARDS NEXT TO THEM.
This is why the edge cards are important, THE “CARD NEXT TO THEM” IS NOTHING. The empty rune. Void.

I mean... I just love divination! The stories that are being told are so layered and complex, and all you have are some symbols! :-D

Here's another sample reading... wow.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Reading teacups

Judging by his expression, he's very interested in the girl facing him :-D

But, if all those symbols shown in the picture are in his cup... wow. I think I see a shotgun wedding there... :-D

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Some Miscellaneous Methods

The Oracle of Human Destiny, Cagliostro’s Mystic Alphabet of the Magi, The Golden Wheel of Fortune, The Art of Invoking Spirits in the Crystal, The Various Methods of Divination

164 Aldersgate St., London, E.C.

Divination with Needles

Take five-and-twenty new needles ; set them on a plate, and pour water on them. Those which cross each other denote as many enemies of the consulting person. Ancient magic attributes many virtues to the needle. When the winding-sheet of a corpse has been sewn with it, it acquires a power of enchantment over the bridal bed, and the fulfilment of the marriage act can be prevented by its means.


This is a time-honoured method of divination by means of a cock, and it has the admirable merit of simplicity. Trace a large circle in sand, and divide it into twenty-four equal spaces, in each of which must be inscribed one letter of the alphabet, rejecting J and U, which are usually represented in ancient writings by their correspondents I and V. Put over each letter a single grain of barley or wheat, and in the centre of the circle place the cock, who is the chief agent in this divinatory rite. Carefully notice from which letters he pecks up the grain, and the order in which he proceeds during his mystic meal, for the assemblage of these letters should form a word which will give you reliable information on that question about which you had recourse to the oracle.


Divination by onions
This ceremony is only performed on Christmas Eve, and to obtain tidings of absent persons. Place several onions on a table, and leave them undisturbed till they begin to sprout, having previously inscribed upon each the name of some absent friend. That which sprouts most speedily signifies that the person whose name it bears is in the enjoyment of vigorous health.
In the middle period of the nineteenth century the method was practised by German maidens in the hope of ascertaining particulars of their future husbands.


This method of divination is concerned with magical clairvoyance, and requires the assistance of a natural magician. It is performed in the following manner. Place some globular vases, filled to the brim with clear water, between a number of lighted waxen tapers. Make an invocation of the angelical or planetary intelligences — such as Israfel, Gabriel, or Metron, the spirit of the north — and direct the natural magician, who should be a boy or a girl of absolute and assured virginity, to gaze intently into the vases, when they will behold upon the surface of the water, amidst the reflected light of the tapers, a pictorial reply to the questions proposed by the consumers of the oracle,

(For some reason I find it less probable to find "the natural magician, a boy or a girl of absolute and assured virginity" than that this actually works :-D)


This is another method of divination by water, which must be placed in a silver vase on a clear, moonlit night. The light of a candle is reflected from the blade of a knife on to the water, on which the gazer must fix his concentrated attention. Should he possess any faculty of clairvoyance, he will read an answer to his questions either pictorially or literally represented upon the smooth and shimmering surface.


This form of divination is considered efficacious for the recovery of things stolen, and seems to have been practised in the Middle Ages. A pearl must be placed by a fire and covered with a glass vase. The names of the persons suspected must be repeated in a loud voice above it, and at that of the guilty party, it is credibly declared that the pearl, with a sudden bound, will strike and perhaps shiver the top of the vase. If no such manifestation occurs the diviner may be certain that he is on the wrong scent, and will do well to obtain information by some other method.


This pleasing form of divination is practised by opening the works of some poet at hazard, and taking the lines on which the eye first falls as a prediction on the subject about which information is desired. The works of Homer and Virgil were generally chosen in the past, but a mine of poetic and even prophetic suggestion will be discovered in Shakespeare. A considerable gift of insight is required in the interpretation of this class of oracle, and those who consult it will do well to look below the surface for the mystic significance of the passage. A variety of this divinatory method consists in opening the book with a pin, and consulting that passage which is marked by the point of the instrument.


A form of divination which may elicit latent clairvoyance, and was generally practised with boys, consists in rubbing oil or wax upon the nails of the seer, who turns them to the sunlight and gazes fixedly upon them. Should he possess the required pyschic power, he will perceive various figures represented on the surface of the nails, as on so many mirrors or crystals, and he will be able to afford information on the subjects which are under inquiry.


This divinatory methood was still practised in Germany during the first half of the nineteenth century. It is performed by scattering ashes thickly in some place exposed to the air and writing therein with the end of the finger any question about which information is needed. The inscribed ashes are then left for the night, and on the following morning the letters that remain legible are used as oracles, for which purpose they may be placed in their natural order, when if they form an intelligible word, it may be considered to contain the mystic sense of the oracle and an answer to the question proposed. Otherwise, the insight of the contriver must be used to extract an appropriate answer from the assemblage of letters arranged after any fashion. As destiny is supposed to decide what letters should remain legible, and what should be effaced, this intervention of the operator does not interfere with the working of the oracle, but simply manifests its message. Should other characters than those inscribed originally appear upon the surface of the ashes, there is no need for apprehension, though such interferences, according to a time-honoured custom, have been frequently ascribed to the devil.


A manual of occult divination would be justly deemed incomplete without some reference to the several time-honoured methods of eliciting occult information and prophetic oracles which are included under this name. Geomancy, however, is much too extensive a subject to be treated within a brief space, and fortunately, those who are anxious for a particular acquaintance with its mysteries will find every opportunity for obtaining it in the handbooks which treat of the subject. It has been studied by serious persons, among others, by Cornelius Agrippa, whose account of it will be found in the Three Books of Occult Philosophy. There are also tracts in manuscript, in which some of the conventional signs used in the art are brought into relation with other occult systems, and the results are striking.

Apart from the various conventions, Geomancy, philologically, signifies divination by earth, and one of its most simple applications consists in the scattering of a pinch of dust or earth upon a table, concentrating the prophetic faculty on the lines and the formless figures which it assumes, and thence extracting the mystic oracle. Obviously, this process is substantially identical with divination by the grounds in a tea or coffee cup.

Geomancy may also be practised by the observation of fissures and crevices naturally formed in the earth ; a biologized condition is occasionally produced on inhaling the vapours which ascend from these places, and the oracular utterances of the subject, under such influence, are interpreted in a convenient manner and consistently with the needs of the occasion.

Bituminous exhalations, which issue from the bowels of the earth and are fraught with the tenebrous mysteries of the “ concentrated centre of Nature,” are, however, comparatively uncommon, but there is yet another method of geomantic magic, which may be performed by tracing lines and circles on the ground, and then exercising the clairvoyant faculty upon their various combinations.

Finally, the most popular of all the processes is the fortuitous marking of a sheet of paper with points from right to left, and for the space of four lines. The lucidity of seership is then directed to the evolution of a mystical cosmos out of this minute chaos. In the hands of Cornelius Agrippa and Heydon, this method has been elaborated to the last degree, by the help of astrological formulae, and the doctrines of planetary influences.

Aeromancy. — The old art of predicting things to come by variations in atmospheric and kindred phenomena. The appearance of a comet, for example, announced the approaching death of some great personage. Auguries were drawn from lightning and thunder, from the forms of clouds, and even ceremonial magic obtained presages by causing the apparition of spectres in various regions of the air.

Alphitomancy. — A form of divination by means of barley meal for the discovery of guilty persons. The accused person was compelled to partake, and would do so, if innocent, without inconvenience, but in the contrary case, he showed signs of indigestion or choking.

Aleuromancy. — Paper pellets inscribed with oracular sentences were placed in a basin of flour and stirred nine times. The flour was then divided among a number of people in search of information, and each recipient applied the oracle which he received to his particular subject of inquiry.

Anthropomancy. — A horrible rite of divination by the inspection of human entrails, usually those of children sacrificed for the purpose. It is described by Herodotus.

Apantomancy. — The fortuitous act of extracting presages from the appearance of any object unexpectedly — as, for example, a hare or an eagle. A spider seen running or spinning in the morning promised money, but in the evening news. A contrary opinion regarded all such occurrences as evil omens.

Arithmancy. — Divination by numbers, more especially in connection with their alphabetical equivalents. There are many modes of this art, and it ranks as an occult science in its more elaborate developments.

Aspidomancy. — Described as an Indian practice, but as the diviner sits in a circle, recites conjurations and passes into a kind of ecstasy, it is really a department of ceremonial magic.

Astragalomancy. — Divination by dice, two being used for the purpose, each bearing the numbers i to 6. They were cast in the ordinary manner ; the numbers obtained were translated into letters, when an oracle was obtained by rendering these into words and the words into some kind of sense.
To make the process more ceremonial and impressive, a question was written on paper and this was passed through the smoke of burning juniper wood.

Axinomancy. — Divination performed with a hatchet.
To discover hidden treasures, the weapon was held edge upward in the air and an attempt was made to balance an agate thereon. If successful, no treasure was in the neighbourhood, but in the other event it was repeated three times. If the agate rolled in the same direction, it was worth while to continue the search, but otherwise the inquirers must go further.
To discover thieves, the handle was held straight up in the air and people danced round it. When the handle shook so that the axe fell to the ground, the point of the compass to which the top of the handle was turned was the direction in which to seek for the guilty person.

Belomancy. — Divination by arrows, on a number of which the possible answers to a given question were written, and the darts drawn at hazard.

Bibliomancy. — For the discovery of sorcerers. The accused person was placed on one side of a pair of scales and a Bible on the other. If he proved the lighter, he was held innocent — on the whole, perhaps as good as any other method of testing which used to be employed for the purpose.
The Bible was also opened with a gold pin and a presage was drawn from the word on which it rested.

Botanomancy. — Performed by leaves or branches of vervain and heather after the same manner as Belomancy.
Presages were also drawn from the scattered leaves of these plants after a high wind.

Capnomancy. — Divination by smoke, obtained by the burning of vervain and other sacred plants. The shapes and direction taken were the subjectmatter of the oracles.

Causimomancy. — Divination by fire. For example, if a combustible object failed to burn, a happy omen was concluded from this object.

Chiromancy. — The inspection of lines on the hand — one of the occult sciences and the subject of many elaborate treatises, both ancient and modern.

Cledonismancy. — Divination by fortuitous words heard on momentous occasions and in its principles precisely similar to Apantomancy.

Cleidomancy. — Divination by a key, for the discovery of theft and murder. The key was placed in a book with the ring outside and the book was tied up. The Querent held the key by his finger placed in the ring and whispered the name of a suspected person. If innocent, the key did not stir ; but if this was the guilty party, it moved so violently that the string round the book was broken.

Cosquinomancy. — A method of discovering theft by mean's of a sieve placed upon pincers held by two fingers of each hand only. Suspected names were recited and he was judged guilty at whose name the sieve, shook or turned over. It was serviceable for other misdeeds.

Critomancy. — A mode of drawing presages from meats offered in sacrifice and barley flour strewed upon sacrificial victims.

Crystallomancy. — Divination by means of a crystal - but this is a form of clairvoyance, and as such is well known at the present day.

Dactylomancy. — Divination by rings made under certain stellar aspects ; but finger-ring lore is too large a subject for a record in this place.

Daphnomancy. — Divination by the laurel, a branch of which was cast into the fire. If it crackled in burning, this was a happy augury, but the contrary result was ominous.

Demonomancy. — A department of Black Magic, being the evocation of demons and the obtaining from them of answers to specific questions.

Eromancy. — Said to be a Persian practice. A vessel was filled with water ; the Querent covered his head with a linen cloth and uttered his wishes in a low voice. If the water bubbled, it was a fortunate prognostic.

Geloscopy. — The curious art of extracting characteristics from laughter, but scarcely a form of divination, as the term is understood.

Gyromancy. — The ceremony of circumambulating a circle about which letters were traced. This was continued till giddiness ensued and the performers fell to the ground. The letters covered in their fall gave oracles, for those who could interpret them, concerning future things.

Hippomancy. — The extraction of oracles from the neighing of horses.

Hydromancy — The prediction of things to come by means of water, and of this there were many forms, of which I will mention one. A vessel was filled with water and a ring suspended over it by means of a thread. This ring was caused to strike the sides of the basin a certain number of times, and presages were drawn from the movements caused in the water.

Ichthyomancy. — Divination by the entrails of fish.

Lampadomancy. — The extraction of prognostics from the form, colour and various movements in the light of a lamp. Sparks from the wick meant news.

Libanomancy. — Divination by incense, accompanied by prayers relative to the question at issue. The incense was cast upon fire and the smoke carried the prayers to heaven. If they were to be granted, the fire consumed the incense; but if not, as it had to be cast at hazard, the incense either fell away or was not consumed. For some obscure reason, this practice was void in respect of death and marriage.

Myomancy. — Divination by rats and mice, another variety of Apantomancy, with special reference to the cries of these creatures.

Oculomancy. — The art of identifying a thief by the turn of his eye, said to have been accompanied by certain superstitious ceremonies.

Œnomancy. — -Divination by wine, with special reference to the colour observed when drinking it and to any other circumstances from which an interpretation could be derived.

Omphalomancy. — Divination by the navel of newborn first children, to ascertain what future conceptions awaited the mother. It was determined by the number of markings or bands.

Onomancy. — Divination by names, but enough has been said on this subject in our earlier sections. There were, however, several methods.

Oomancy. — Divination by the outer and inner forms of eggs. The most impenetrable secrets of the future were said to yield their mysteries to this process.
A modern method is to break an egg slowly into a glass of water, and the shapes assumed by the white part are supposed to furnish presages.

Ophiomancy. — Divination by the movements of serpents.

Ornithomancy. — Divination by the flight, songs and cries of birds. I do not think that the laws of this art have come down to us.

Pegomancy. — Divination by springs of water, performed by dropping stones therein and observing their movements.

Phyllorhodomancy. — Divination by rose-leaves, which were made to clack in the hand and the sound resulting was interpreted.

Psychomancy. — Divination by spirits, but especially the spirits of the dead and therefore a department of ceremonial magic on its worst side.

Pyromancy. — Divination by fire, with the help of some ground pitch cast thereon. If it lighted quickly, there was a favourable augury.

Rabdomancy. — The ancient form of divination by staves, mentioned by Ezekiel and Hosea. A staff was chosen and peeled on one side ; it was then thrown in the air, and if, on falling to the ground, the peeled side was uppermost, but the reverse on the second trial, this was a happy omen.

Sciomancy. — Another variety of necromantic art, but more especially concerned in the evocation of astral reflections to ascertain future things.

Sideromancy. — Divination with a red-hot iron on which some kind of spangles were cast and were said to give star-like reflections in burning.

Sycomancy. — Divination by the leaves of the fig-tree, on which questions were written. If the leaves dried quickly, it was a bad omen, and the contrary in the alternative case.

Tephramancy. — Divination by the cinders of a fire which had consumed a sacrificial victim.

Theomancy. — A part of the Jewish Kabalah, being a study of the mysteries resident in Divine Names. It was held to be the highest of all the practical sciences arising out of the secret wisdom of Israel.

Tiromancy. — Divination by cheese, but of this art I have found no particulars.

Xylomancy. — Divination by the help of pieces of dry wood found on the road — also by the casual arrangement of sticks of fire-wood and the way in which they burn.

A brief Prognostication concerning Children born any Day of the Week

The child born on Sunday, shall be of long life, and obtain riches. On Monday. Weak, and of an effeminate temper, which selfom brings a ma...