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 |

Divination is a form of energetic communication. It is a wonderful tool to help us connect with our guides and intuition. The ancient practice of seeking knowledge, guidance, messages and inspiration from spirit or higher consciousness, can be accomplished using divination tools and crafts such as palm readings, tarot and dowsing. In this guide, we will explore the ultimate question - 'what is divination' and provide you with some helpful tips and tools to get started.

Almost every culture around the world has a form of divination – from the I Ching used in China to Runes used in Norse tribes and cowrie shells used throughout the African and Caribbean traditions.

Many people think of divination as fortune-telling or predicting the future or perhaps a supernatural practice that you see in magical movies or literature. Divination in spiritual terms is a means to connect with the guides and intuition. Tarot reading and astrology often fall into this category.

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 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. {#mntl-sc-block_1-0}

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. {#mntl-sc-block_1-0}

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 to tarot cards.

Pendulums and dowsing

pendulum 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. {#mntl-sc-block_2-0-14}

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 how to use runes for divination.


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"?

Here are some divination tools to get started

A good divination system will develop your intuition so that you may find yourself divining within certain situations in your daily life. So without further ado, let's take a look at some divination tools to get start your journey.

Witchcraft Pocket Pendulum Divination Kit

Witchcraft Pocket Pendulum Divination Kit

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This pocket pendulum divination tin has all you need to tap into spirit to receive guidance. It contains an altar tin, crystal pendulum, moon water mist, crystals, tea light and pendulum board.

Review: "I was very excited to open my tin, and it did not disappoint! All the items included are packaged carefully and nicely presented and perfect for divination purposes. I especially like how it includes a little informational scroll which is perfect for beginner witches. I would recommend it to any practising witch!"

Vintage ritual spoons 

Vintage ritual spoons

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These vintage ritual spoons with a crystal attached are perfect for practising spells and potion making and come in bronze, gold, copper, silver and dark silver.

Review: "Arrived quickly, beautiful quality spoon and amazing for making my spells."

Rune stones gift set 

Rune stones gift set

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This Rune Stones gift set comes with 24 ancient alphabetic symbols and is hand-carved into stone. It comes with a lovely velvet pouch with a satin lining. You will also find a book with instructions included explaining the symbols.

Review: "I am so impressed by the runes I ordered; they are absolutely beautiful. Packaged beautifully in a velvet pouch complete with a good quality guidebook. I would highly recommend it. Thank you very much."

Pendulum Board Divination Mat made of Vegan Leather

Pendulum Board

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This pendulum board is laser carved on genuine Portuguese cork leather, which is 100 per cent vegan and eco-friendly and perfect for asking questions that need a more concise answer. It can be rolled up for easy transportation and 'divination on the go'. There are two sizes available: small (15cm) or large (21.5cm).

Review: "Way more beautiful than I expected! It’s nice and compact, easy to carry around if needed. Thin and lightweight. Very well made. Highly recommend."

Crystal Pendulum

Crystal Pendulum

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Crystal pendulums are excellent for healing purposes as they are more complex as each type of crystal has a different kind of energy. While crystal pendulums are best used for healing, they can also reveal answers to you. Crystal pendulums can provide you with reliable answers with proper care and cleansing.

Review: "I absolutely love it. Fast delivery too. I would recommend."

Coin Divination

Coin Divination

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Made of high-quality zinc alloy, this Yes or No Skull Commemorative Coin can provide you with straight-to-the-point answers when tossed in the air with intention.

Review: "Really good quality."

Wooden Scrying Dowsing Pendulums

Beautiful and Powerful hand-turned

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These beautiful hand-turned and polished wood pendulums can be currently produced from holly, oak, ash, yew, cherry and holly. Each type of tree holds its own meaning - with the 'oak' being the mighty and most powerful of trees, it will offer protection to even the beginner truth-seekers, while 'cherry' is a heartfelt wood, which is lovely for working with compassion and forgiveness.

These tools are a beautiful way to tune into your intuition, and all come with a little homemade pouch for safekeeping and a note from the seller.

Review: "I'm over the moon with my pendulum and feel a real connection to it. It is beautiful and so well made and more than worth the money. Joan enclosed a lovely note which I keep with my pendulum in the little bag that it came in. Postage was super fast, and communication was excellent. If you're tempted by a pendulum, then I can highly recommend these; they are gorgeous. Mine has already answered a few questions for me, and that has bought me real peace of mind."

Yarrow stalks 9" 23cm I Ching Chinese Oracle

Ching Chinese Oracle

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Gathered on sunny banks and meadows in Derbyshire, UK. These yarrow stalks are a natural product and vary in colour and diameter. You can also get the I Ching book here.

Review: "Amazing yarrow stalks! Very fast delivery and from the careful packaging and the handwritten note - you can tell everything is done with love and care. Thank you!"

The Original Rider Waite Tarot Deck 

Tarot deck

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No divination tool round-up is complete without mentioning the classic original Rider Waite Tarot cards, which many say are still the best. First published in 1909, this traditional set is perfect for long-standing tarot loyalists who like to do things by the book. This deck is actually also perfect for beginners.

Reviews: "My very first deck! I'm in love with it-although I can see what other users are saying about its re-print being sub-par. Since this is my first deck and I don't know any of the cards, it doesn't bother me because I am not yet reading the detail. If you are a season tarot reader, you may be disappointed!"

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