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Divination, Numerology, Tarot

Introduction

Divination, the practice of seeking knowledge or guidance through supernatural means, has a rich and diverse history that predates many established religions. Throughout human history, people have turned to various forms of divination in their quest for understanding, wisdom, and connection to the spiritual world. This article provides a general historical overview of divination, exploring its deep roots across various cultures and demonstrating that it is, in fact, much older than many of the religions that later denounced it.

Ancient Divination Practices

Divination practices can be traced back to the earliest civilizations, with evidence of their use found in various forms across the world. Some notable examples include:

  1. Oracle Bones (China): Dating back to the Shang Dynasty (1600-1046 BCE), oracle bones were used in ancient China for divination purposes. Priests would inscribe questions on turtle shells or animal bones, which were then subjected to heat until they cracked. These cracks were interpreted as messages from the gods.
  2. Haruspicy (Mesopotamia): In ancient Mesopotamia, haruspicy involved examining the entrails of sacrificed animals to predict the future. This practice dates back to at least 3000 BCE and was later adopted by the ancient Romans.
  3. Runes (Norse Culture): The use of runes for divination can be traced back to the early Germanic and Norse cultures. Runic inscriptions found on stones, amulets, and other artifacts from as early as the 2nd century CE were believed to possess magical properties and provide guidance from the gods.
  4. Augury (Roman Culture): In ancient Rome, augury was the practice of interpreting omens from the behavior of birds or other natural phenomena. Augurs were highly respected officials responsible for advising the state on important matters based on their divinatory interpretations.
  5. Pyromancy (Worldwide): Pyromancy, the practice of divination through fire, has been found in various ancient cultures worldwide, including the Greeks, Celts, and Native Americans. This form of divination often involved interpreting the behavior of flames, smoke, or the patterns left behind by ashes.

Divination Across Cultures

The presence of divination practices in ancient civilizations highlights the universal human desire to seek guidance and wisdom from supernatural sources. These practices, although unique to each culture, share common themes, such as the belief that natural phenomena, objects, or animals could serve as conduits for divine messages.

Despite the opposition from later monotheistic religions, many divination practices have persisted and evolved over time. The widespread use of tarot cards, astrology, and other forms of divination in modern times is a testament to the enduring appeal of these ancient practices.

Conclusion

Divination has a long and diverse history that spans across numerous cultures and predates many established religions. These ancient practices demonstrate the timeless human desire to connect with the spiritual realm and seek guidance from forces beyond our understanding. By recognizing the rich history of divination, we can appreciate its value as a cultural and spiritual tradition that has shaped human experience for millennia.

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