The History of Divination
- Looking At Divination
- Everyone is psychic to one degree or another. Some people
are just more"aware" of the unseen energies within
and around them than others are. But those "gut feelings",
that woman's intuition, all are psychic abilities. If you haven't
already, I'd suggest you go back a few postings and read about
Psychic Gifts. This posting describes
what being a psychic is, vs. what a channel.
- If you're interested in using your psychic abilities for
the purpose of Divination, then you might want to read the "Psychic Development - Developing Your Talents"
- Contributing Author
following article is a contribution from one of the regular members
on the Pagan's
Path Message board, Panther Witch. She has graciously allowed
me to post her research on the History of Divination from the
board here on the site. It is a great article and I thank Panther
for allowing us to share it here on the site.
- If you're interested in The History of Divination, you might
want to see Panther's article on Divination
Tools as well.
- About Divination
- By Panther Witch
- Edited by Lady SpringWolf
- Divination: (From Merriam Webster's Online Dictionary)
- From the Middle English "Divinacioun", from Latin
"Divination-, divinatio, from divinare"
- Approximate first useage: 14th century
- The art or practice that seeks to foresee or foretell future
events or discover hidden knowledge usually by the interpretation
of omens or by the aid of supernatural powers.
- Unusual insight; intuitive perception
- The word divination comes from the Latin word "divinare"
or to be inspired by a god. Traditionally, it never has mattered
which God or Deity has inspired the events foreseen, but almost
all religions have had their versions of diviners. It is actually
more common than most people realize. Divination in its most
basic sense is to foretell the future.
- Divination is forbidden in the Christian Bible. The Bible's
attitude on divination is very hostile in general. Deuteronomy
18:10-12 (King James Version) states:
- 18:10 There shall not be found among
you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through
the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times,
or an enchanter, or a witch. 11 Or a charmer, or a consulter
with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. 12 For
all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and
because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them
out from before thee.
- All that translates to: Sorcery, witchcraft, omens, fortunetellers,
ect are evil, and God doesn't like them.
- There are exceptions though.
- Daniel 5:11-12 There is a man in
thy kingdom, in whom is the spirit of the holy gods; and in the
days of thy father light and understanding and wisdom, like the
wisdom of the gods, was found in him; whom the king Nebuchadnezzar
thy father, the king, I say, thy father, made master of the magicians,
astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers; For as much as an excellent
spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams,
and shewing of hard sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were
found in the same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar: now
let Daniel be called, and he will shew the interpretation.
- Daniel was very much a prophet of God. His divinations, using
magic, astrology, Chaldeans (not the people in general- Chaldeans
were sorcerers, witches used all sorts of Magik), and soothsayers
(truth sayers- prophets). So him using divination was OK. There
are other examples, but that's not the point of this posting.
Divination is found in some form or another all around the world,
weather it is condoned or not. In fact divination is still illegal
in many places in the world.
- A Historical Perspective
- Divination has been around as long as mankind has walked
the earth. The Egyptians, Druids and Hebrews used scrying. Romans
liked augury and haruspicy. Druids also used haruspicy as well
as reading death throes. Greeks had Oracles. Grain, sand and
peas were tossed into fields in the Middle Ages to read the patterns
they fell in, for the purpose of divining the cast of the year,
crops, health, every aspect. The IChing was used as far back
as 1000 BCE.
- Dice and even playing cards had a divinatory background.
Dice (or knucklebones) were made from hooves of animals (horses,
oxen, ect) and then cast both for gambling, and for fortunetelling.
(Honestly, are the two really that different? Gambling is betting
on a future outcome as it is.) Dominoes were a spinoff of dice
as well, and had similar uses, but more variations were available.
Dominoes were used in China and India first, and have some connection
to the IChing and casting of bones.
- Another type of divination coming from the China area of
the world is Feng-Shui, or geomancy. Feng-Shui is a divination
based on the energy that encircles the planet. Feng-Shui is still
used today, but not in its original structure. Now people use
it to arrange furniture, but it used to be used to build structures,
just by their placement to the invisible energy lines running
around the planet.
- Playing cards and tarot are linked closely as well. Some
decks were used for both fortunetelling and gaming. There is
controversy as to which came first, but some stories say that
early divination decks were turned into playing cards to hide
the practice during the Crusades and Inquisition times. (The History of Tarot)
- Astrology has been around in both legends and history for
many centuries as well. The influence of planets on humankind
and the things surrounding us seems to be very common to hear
about. Even most newspapers have a daily section dedicated to
your daily horoscope.
- Prophetic dreams counts among the list of divination methods.
(Dream Interpretation) Some people have
been able to put themselves into a trance and remotely see, or
foretell events coming in the near or far future. Some of the
most commonly known future predictions and theories are from
people like Nostradamus, Edgar
Cayce, the Mayans (Don't forget the calendar they made),
the Egyptian pyramids and sphinx, theories about Stonehenge,
and the list goes on.
- Other lower key divinations that you may see in daily life:
farmer's almanac, weather averages, forecasts, ect. These can
be considered a type of weather reading. Certainly the farmer's
almanac each year can be considered a type of divination. It
most of the time even gives out moon phases, crop planting times,
best fishing days, and sometimes lucky numbers or day outlooks
(depending on the version). (Working
With The Moon)
- Keep in mind, please, that foretelling the future may indeed
have an impact on the future you are actually seeing. I know
I'm not the only one here that holds to this concept. (Receiving
- Foretelling The Future
- Additional Thoughts By SpringWolf:
- It's important to note that no one can use tools of divination
to foretell the future in the modern perspective people see in
TV and movies. What a psychic reader or divination tool can do
is show you the probable outcome of energy patterns you have
currently put into place up to today. But with free will and
choice, you have the ability to change these outcomes.
- This is the benefit of divination. To determine how your
current choices have created a pattern of energy on your path
for today, tomorrow and beyond. By understanding how your energy
is being manifest by you, you can alter those aspects you don't
want, and work toward those you do want. So don't think the future
is set in stone. It's not, if you don't want it to be.
- There are many instances of divination, magik and witchcraft
in the Bible. Especially the King James version. Very few are
positive, but a few are surprising and almost seem hypocritical.
- Case in point Saul's visit to the Witch of Endor.
- 1 Samuel 28:3 Now Samuel was dead,
and all Israel had mourned over him and buried him in Ramtha
in his own sepulcher. And Saul had put away the diviners and
the wizards of the land.
- 1 Samuel 28:7-25 Then Saul said
to his servants, Seek me a woman who has a familiar spirit, that
I may go to her and inquire of her. And his servants said to
him Behold, there is a woman who has a familiar spirit at En-dor.
(find a bible and read this entire chapter, it's very interesting).
- To make a long story a little shorter, Saul goes to the woman
and asks her to call up Samuel so he may as questions of him.
The woman channels Samuel who asks Saul why he has disturbed
him and called him up. They have a conversation and Saul leaves.
- The woman becomes known as the Witch of Endor and seemingly
appears again to Solomon in the Hebrew Bible in the book of The
Wisdom of Solomon 12:4. There is an interesting write up about
this encounter @ Bible
- Sources: 1, PantherWitch
- Created: 07.02.2009 Updated: 11.04.2009