Back in ancient times, especially in rural areas, seers would have to be creative and use what they had to hand as divination tools. In the previous post, I went through a few of the more creative forms of ancient divination methods. Many of which are still practiced today. In this post I am going to look at some more obscure and somewhat icky forms of mancy.
This form of divination is based on looking at feces. It was popular in Ancient Egypt and dung beetles were used. These beetles were sacred to the Ancient Egyptians. The odour of the feces is also used to determine the age of it. It’s texture was a factor and where the feces was dropped or left as well as what was inside such as corn, seeds, grass etc. Looking at feces to diagnose illness has been used since the ancient times. Today you may recognise it better as giving a stool sample at the doctors.
This is similar to scatomancy but this form of divination looks at seeds in animal dung. The amount of seeds and how they are distributed within the dung are important to the interpretation.
This is divination interpreted from the ravings of lunatics and it dates back to the Greek Oracle in Delphi where a Greek prophet called Pythia would have her ramblings interpreted by priests. There are some people who may appear mad or insane but also have a psychic clarity to see, understand and feel things. Their behaviour can predict when something is in the air such as a change in energy, bad weather or the foretelling of an event. Like a baramometer for the psychic weather, you can often tell if there is something afoot in the zeitgeist by the behaviour of certain people.
This is divination using the movement and behaviour of cats to predict events. This one is not as obscure as it first appears. For instance when we say if a cat washes behind its ears it’s a sign of rain or if a cat sits with its back towards a fire, there will be frost. That is a form of felidomancy. Cats are very sensitive to energy and atmospheric changes so they pick up on things before a human does.
Witches have cats as familiars and also as a psychic barometer to detect what may be happening in the atmosphere. My cat is my familiar and I can tell a lot about the weather, the psychic weather or a person by her behaviour and movements. She is like my psychic alarm system. Is it any wonder cats are magical and we hold them in such high esteem since ancient Egyptian times.
Thou art the great cat,
The avenger of the gods,
And the judge of worlds,
And the president of the sovereign chiefs,
And the governor of the holy circle;
Thou art indeed…The great catInscription on the Royal Tomb at Thebes
This is an old form of divination looking at how curds form during the coagulation of cheese. It was used in the Middle Ages and the shape, holes and mould patterns were interpreted to predict the future. In a similar way to cromnyomancy, cheese was also used by young ladies to predict the names of future husbands. Just as with the onions, they would write the names of their prospective suitors on pieces of cheese and the one whose name was on the cheese where mould grew first was believed to a match.
Answers to questions were also found by writing a number of possible outcomes on different slices of cheese. Then putting the cheese in a cage with a mouse. The first piece of cheese to be chosen by the mouse was the answer to the question. This is also a form of myomancy.
A form of divination using eggs. It is said to have come from Ancient Greece. When I think of reasons for using eggs, the cosmic egg comes to mind. The cosmic egg is prevalent in many cultures and civilisations. In Ancient Greece it is known as The Orphic egg. The Orphic egg created the deity Phanes who then went on to create all the other gods.
Eggs are rolled over peoples bodies to remove negative energy or detachment from the evil eye. The egg is then cracked into a bowl and its examined to see if the negativity or evil eye has been removed from the person.
Other forms of oomancy is to pierce an egg shell at the top and bottom and blow the egg into a glass bowl. Leave it for a day and then use the glass to scry with. Eggs have also been used to determine the sex of an unborn child and whether the pregrancy and birth will go well.
Oomancy seems to still be a popular form of mancy in modern practices and there are many books available on the subject and how to interpret the contents of the egg.
Our ancestors used these early oracles to reflect on their lives and make decisions. The items used to see with are simply tools. The interpretations come from the subconscious where all wisdom lies. Using the tools aids us to draw upon our subconscious to bring those insights and answers to the surface.
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