What is divination: a beginners guide

Divination in its purest form is a way to gain insight into a question or situation or seek understanding of the future. Here is what you need to get started.


by Ellen Kinsey |
Updated on

What is divination? Divination is an ancient practice of energetic communication, serving as a bridge between our world and the spiritual realm. It's one of the best rituals to tap into our intuition and connect with our guides. Throughout history, cultures worldwide have sought knowledge, guidance, and messages from higher consciousness using various divination tools, from the I Ching in China to the Runes of Norse tribes and the cowrie shells in African and Caribbean traditions.

At its core, divination isn't just about fortune-telling or predicting the future, as often depicted in magical movies or literature. Instead, it's a profound spiritual tool that facilitates a deeper connection with our intuition and guides. Tarot reading, astrology, and the use of pendulum boards are popular methods in this category. Speaking of which, what is a pendulum? It's a tool often used in dowsing, swinging in response to questions, tapping into the user's subconscious knowledge.

Best divination tools shortlist

• Best tarot card deck - The Original Rider Waite Tarot Deck - Buy now on Waterstones
• Best divination kit - Witchcraft Pocket Pendulum Divination Kit - Buy now on Etsy
• Best ritual spoon - RARE Sacred Ritual Spoon - Buy now on Etsy

A well-structured divination system not only provides insights but also hones your intuition. Over time, you may find yourself instinctively divining insights from everyday situations. As you embark on this enlightening journey, consider exploring tools like the best ritual spoons and pendulum boards to enhance your experience.

What is divination: tools to get started

Best divination kit


This pocket pendulum divination tin has all you need to tap into spirit to receive guidance. It

Best tarot card deck


No divination tool round-up is complete without mentioning the classic original Rider Waite Tarot

Best ritual spoon


This charming rustic silver spoon is 3.5 inches are ideal for practising spells. The perfect

Best rune stones


This Rune Stones gift set comes with 24 ancient alphabetic symbols and is hand-carved into stone.

Best pendulum board


This pendulum board is laser carved on genuine Portuguese cork leather, which is 100 per cent

Best crystal pendulum


Crystal pendulums are excellent for healing purposes as they are more complex as each type of

Best divination coin


Made of high-quality metal, this Yes or No Skull Commemorative Coin can provide you with

Best dowsing pendulum


These beautiful hand-turned and polished wood pendulums can be currently produced from holly, oak,

Best yarrow stalks


Gathered on sunny banks and meadows in Derbyshire, UK. These yarrow stalks are a natural product

Divination guide

Before embarking on this endeavour, you should carefully consider why you would like to attempt this art. It is in our nature to want to understand and know the future. We may be in a crisis and want to know when we will make it through the other side - so we may ask questions like, "will I ever find a soul mate" or "will I be rich?"

In asking these questions, we are depreciating ourselves. We create our own reality, and seeking answers to these questions means we are not taking power into our own hands and manifesting our desires, hopes and dreams.

Divination, in its purest form, is a way to gain insight into a question or situation and seek an understanding of the future. From horoscopes to tarot reading - there are various ways to uncover this knowledge using tools and crafts.

I ching ancient Chinese oracle with Yijing hexagram, old coins and stalks

What are some different types of divination?

There are various methods of divination that you may choose to use in your spiritual practice. Some practices may draw you in more than others, so see which one works best for you.

Skills take time to perfect, so like with any craft, practice makes perfect. Types of divination include pendulums and dowsing, rune stones and cards, astrology, crystal balls, I-ching and more.

In this article, we will run through some of the more common types of divination and how they work.

Tarot cards

Tarot is one of the most popular divination practices. A common misconception is that tarot cards are there to predict the future: the true purpose of tarot is to tap into your intuition to see what is falling away, what is working for you now and how to manifest your goals. Here is a beginner's guide on how to read tarot cards.

Pendulums and dowsing

pendulum necklace is one of the simplest forms of divination. It's a matter of yes/no questions being asked and answered. Typically, most people use a crystal, wood or stone, but you can use any object with a bit of weight to it. There are several ways you can use a pendulum for divination — you'd be surprised what you can learn with "yes" and "no" answers. The trick is to know to ask the right questions. Here is our guide on how to use pendulums for divination.

Rune stones

Runes are an ancient form of oracle used by those seeking guidance. This tool has a long history, as it was used by Germanic and Nordic tribes. Here is a guide on runes meanings.


I-Ching is an ancient Chinese divination text, and among the oldest of the Chinese classics. As a divination text, the I Ching is used for a traditional Chinese form of cleromancy known as I Ching divination, in which bundles of yarrow stalks produce sets of six random numbers ranging from 6 to 9. Here is a guide to I Ching for beginners.

Palm Reading - Fortune And Future Teller - Palmistry Fortune Teller Reads Lines On Man Hand

How do I choose what method to use?

Every system works and has its place - they all carry magic and are fantastic tools you can use to tap into your intuition. Finding a practice that works best for you takes some time but works wonders. Ask yourself this, "is this craft only concerned with the highest good?", "Does it feel right and at home with me?" and "Does it carry some wisdom that you can learn from"?

Ellen Kinsey is a senior health and wellness product writer for Spirit & Destiny, specialising in natural health, beauty, and self-development. She lives and breathes all things spirituality, travel, holistic health and wellness.

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