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Yuletide Divination

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Seeing as we're in the "holiday season", just for fun, I thought I'd post about this:

 

Following my personal celebration of the winter solstice earlier this evening, having recently read that there was some lore regarding using the shadows cast by a burning Yule log for divinatory means, I made an attempt at the same. Staring at the dancing shadows on my ceiling, and assisted by some slight tipsiness, I easily fell into a light trance, but no visions came. It could be that I felt somewhat unable to give myself over to the change in consciousness for some reason, feeling myself gripped, for whatever reason, by an profound fear. This isn't a common thing for me, so I'll chalk it up to the fact that the folklore I had read about says that this divination method was used to foretell who would die in the coming year.  

 

I've read also that in older times, when Christmas trees were lit by candle, similar divination was done on Christmas Eve at midnight. We have a Christmas tree in our house, and though of course it is light by electric lights, I'll give it a go with what shadows those cast when the time comes, though I suspect the alteration of consciouniousness will be less profound than that caused by flickering firelight, and thus scrying will not come as easily. I'll post again in this thread when I have my results. 

 

Does anyone else do any similar Yuletide divination? 

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This is going to sound alarmist- it isn't meant to be.  It's just what came to mind.

 

 Of course, witches the world over are known to use various substances to assist them in to trance- absolutely nothing wrong with that.  However, if I was gripped by fear while doing this- i would pay attention.  It is also possible that something was trying to take advantage of your altered state of consciousness.  It seem a bit easier for a spirit to screw with a person when they are under the influence of certain chemicals- just putting that out there.  However, of course if you had death on the brain THAT certainly could be the explanation.  

 

I have no particular ritual of yuletide divination- though it sounds like a nice practice to consider implementing.  New Years eve always stood out to me as I time for this personally.  

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The Winter Solstice is the New Year for me. (But naturally, I celebrate the calendar year along with everyone else.) Along with annual planning (which is reviewed & adjusted at the Summer Solstice), I cast the runes to see what the next solar year will bring. Surprisingly, with all the BS that's happening in the world that can affect me & mine, this year's cast was much more upbeat than prior years.

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Yes, In many ways I would prefer to acknowledge the new year at this time-it is more natural for sure.

Perhaps one day. In the mean time since my "tribe" is working off of the calendar it just seems more in flow with my environment to go with that primarily. Though I do acknowledge the solstices in my own way.

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This is going to sound alarmist- it isn't meant to be.  It's just what came to mind.

 

 Of course, witches the world over are known to use various substances to assist them in to trance- absolutely nothing wrong with that.  However, if I was gripped by fear while doing this- i would pay attention.  It is also possible that something was trying to take advantage of your altered state of consciousness.  It seem a bit easier for a spirit to screw with a person when they are under the influence of certain chemicals- just putting that out there.  However, of course if you had death on the brain THAT certainly could be the explanation.  

 

No, I don't think that that sounds alarmist; you raise good points. My suspicion at the time was that the fear was merely my attempt to suppress the intention of relating the divination to death, as I explicitly *did not* want to know who was going to die. However, looking back on it now, some other things jump out. For one - and I had completely forgotten this when I wrote my last post - while I didn't see anything, I got the strong impression of a spider. (I should mention that I'm something of an arachnophobe). Later that night, on my front porch I found a spider, the first I'd seen near my house in a good while (they're usually pretty scarce here once the cold sets in). In the past, synchronicitous appearances of spiders have often served as clear messages of warning, and as I think on it now, I feel like I may know what it is referring to, and it may indeed be spirit-related. Though I haven't had any other symptoms of spiritual attack, and I was merely a trifle tipsy, I do have a strong suspicion of whom the culprit might be, and appropriate steps have been taken.  

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Oh, well I'm so glad the thought was helpful:).

 

And good for you, being proactive in addressing it.

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So, on a lighter note- I am not much of a video game person- but I just have to share this. There is a beautiful app/ game called Year Walk. The Year Walk companion (free) explains the folklore the game is based on. The premise for the whole game is Arsgang -

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Årsgång

A Swedish folklore practice of divination at New Years- said to reveal who would survive the following year. I think the game is lovely artistically and interesting and for obvious reasons, I couldn't help but think of it. I hope you don't mind this little rabbit trail in the thread. If you choose to take a look at it my blabbering will make more sense I promise.:)

http://geekparty.com/the-year-walk-companion-app-is-fascinating-even-if-youve-never-played-year-walk/

Edited by Oroboros

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My wife and I did the thing with the Christmas tree shadows on midnight on X-mas eve. Here is what we saw: 

  • a crab
  • a pair of spectacles (round ones, like the ones worn by John Lennon or Harry Potter)
  • ribs (like, the kind you eat, like bbq pork ribs or something)
  • the letter H
  • the letter I 

This is meant to divine the coming year. Anyone want to give a go at interpretation? I'm kind of stumped. 

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I have never done yuletide divination, but I like this idea and may try to do it next year. Hopefully I will have a place to burn a yule log of my own.

 

As for your xmas eve divination...I'm going to guess you two are the only ones who will be able to divine that. I'm not getting anything right off the bat, but I feel like if there is anything there, it will jump out at you if you sit with it during meditation or similar?

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Interesting about the spiders too. In the past year and a half, spiders have been a bad omen for me too, which is interesting because I'm not particularly an arachnophobe, and I typically leave spiders alone to do their own thing. They have been something entirely different for me lately though. 

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New Year's Eve traditions and divination. Was going to start a new thread but it's bascially the same as this one. 

 

On NYE I was at a party with friends, one of them took out this kit of small wax pieces in various shapes. A crown, a bottle, a bell etc. and what you do is melt them and pour the wax into a bowl of water. Once cooled you take it out and say what it looks like. There's a list of all sorts of things and the meaning next to them. Whatever you see is supposed to predict your fortune for the coming year. This is a German tradition called Bleigießen (my friend is German), it used to be pieces of lead but for obvious safety reasons is now done with silver painted wax. This type of divination is known as Molybdomancy and I'd never seen or heard of this before. 

 

Does anyone else partake in any NYE cultural traditions?

Edited by Khundekling

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Does anyone else partake in any NYE cultural traditions?

 

I celebrate Samhain as my New Year. I am from a massive farming family, there are 6 farms in my family at the moment, and the time when the crops are in and we can remember and thank our ancestors for their guardianship over the past year is the ending of a busy year for us. Then we look ahead to the land renewing through Winter and all the promise of another round of crops come Spring. We basically follow the old agricultural calendar!

 

I do have a couple of Yule traditions that might count though. One is to put some ash from the Yule log into everyone's shoes for protection and good luck. Anther is to save a piece of the Yule log to light the fire with next year.

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I do have a couple of Yule traditions that might count though. One is to put some ash from the Yule log into everyone's shoes for protection and good luck. Anther is to save a piece of the Yule log to light the fire with next year.

 

Love this!

 

Tana, you are probably one of only a few on here who can properly celebrate the sabbats as they are intended. As most of the customs are based on agriculture I've always felt a disconnect. 

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