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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Divinatory Practices

This article was written by Carl Llewellyn Weschcke on November 30, -0001
posted under Divination

There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of different forms of divination and clairvoyant practice. The following lists organize some of the more familiar by the major styles. It is a preliminary effort.

Analytical Tables of Clairvoyant & Divinatory Practices

By Direct Psychic Perception of an event, object, or person (mostly contemporary)
external to and hidden from the observer, including:

By Direct Psychic Perception by means of Altered States of Consciousness:

By Direct Psychic Perception by means of Extended Consciousness:

By Indirect Psychic Perception through Another Person or Entity:


By Augmented Psychic Perception by means of Divinatory Tools:

Cleidomancy or Clidomancy: using a key attached to a cord or string.
Coscinomancy or Cosquinomancy: using a sieve suspended from shears or tongs.
Dactylomancy or Dactlomancy: using a suspended ring.
Rhabdomancy: by using a stick or rod.

Crystal ball gazing
Crystal gazing
Fires Scrying
Ink Scrying
Mirror Scrying
Smoke Scrying
Water Scrying
Wine Scrying

Coffee Ground Reading
Egg Yolk Reading
Strewn Rice Reading
Wine Sediment Reading 


By Augmented Psychic Perception by means of manually manipulated
complex Symbolic Divination Systems with established rules and meanings:


By Augmented Psychic Perception associated with
Scientifically Measurable Physical Phenomena:


Common types of Divination involving extended psychic awareness

The following is a selection of many divinatory systems, basically demonstrating the point that anything can be manipulated and “read” because the real meaning is found not in the object but in intentional human consciousness. In most cases, the “reading” is accompanied by a light state of trance. In some, but not all systems, there are established “dictionary” meanings. Further information may be found in the on-line Llewellyn’s Paranormal, Magical & Occult Encyclopedia.

Austromancyinterpretation of winds.
Ceraunoscopy and Keraunomancy – interpretation of thunder & lightning.
ChaomancySky Visions
Meteromancy - Shooting Stars

Gematria - interpreting Hebrew bible passages by assigned numeric values to letters of the Hebrew Alphabet
Numerology - dates and words (often birthdates and names) are converted into numbers sequentially identified with the alphabet, and interpreted by a number dictionary.

Rhapsodomancy - Using a book of poetry.

Hydatoscopyinterpreting rainwater.
Lecanomancyinterpreting the sounds or the ripples as stones are dropped into water.
Pegomancyinterpretation of waters of sacred springs, wells, pools, or fountains.

Iridologyinterpreting the iris of the eye.

Scapulimancy, Scapulomancy, Patulamancy -  interpreting the cracks in the burned shoulder bones of an animal
Scatamancy - interpreting excrement
Spatilomancy - interpreting animal excrement

Ailuromancy - interpreting the behavior of cats.
Entomancy - interpreting the behavior of insects

Arachnomancy - interpreting the behavior of spiders
Myrmomancy - interpreting the behavior of ants
Skatharomancy - interpreting a beetle’s tracks

Hippomancy - interpreting the behavior of horses
Myomancy - interpreting the behavior of mice and rats
Ophiomancy interpreting the behavior of serpents
Ornithomancy - interpreting the behavior, flight, and song of birds
Theriomancy - interpreting the movements of groups of animals.

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