An Oracle is any object or system of divination which enables communication with the divine. Most Oracles are a set of symbols, which are sufficiently flexible to form a language. The important thing is not the form, but the richness of the language.
Nature Oracles are used by tribal people in the Pacific islands and throughout Indonesia and likely South America. The Europeans had a whole language based around flowers and plants based upon their looks and properties. The Oracle of Delphi was a priestess medium.
Oracles as a Sacred Language
Most Oracles are a set of symbols, which can be intuitively interpreted. These symbols are sufficiently flexible to form a language. The important thing is not the form, but the richness of the language.
Forms of Oracles
Oracles are quite specific to the culture that developed them. For example, Europeans see the colour white as a sign of purity, whilst most Asians see white as the colour of death. Obviously the same event will be interpreted differently by people of different cultures. Therefore, the Oracle is the language, rather than the event.
The Webster’s Oracle
A common form of Oracle involves the use of a book. Ask a question, open a book (bible, dictionary or what ever comes to hand) at a randomly selected page, place a finger randomly on a page and interpret the words so defined. This form of divination has been practised since books were available.
Nature as an Oracle
The language of nature is a constant Oracle. Natural events provide a divine language.
In some of the Pacific Islands (before the missionaries got to them), the Shaman has Holy sites defining maps of their islands. These maps show the physical layout of the island and the location of landmarks and the houses of the people. To the uninitiated the maps are not obvious and may only appear as random piles of stones and bushes. To read their Oracle, the Shaman will sit quietly and watch the happenings of nature.
If a bird lands on or near a marked space, it is interpreted by the nature and symbolic reference of the bird. The passage of insects over or through marked sites can similarly be interpreted. The sacred space represents the seer’s world.
The direction that the bird or animal took is also relevant. For example if a stream of insects is seen moving seeds away from the “house” of an islander then the family of that person may soon be in need of assistance because the life of the family is being reduced.
If however a bird entered the clearing from the north east, chooses to land on a “house” to eat its kill, then this may mean a festivity is due shortly as north east is close to the rising sun. The fact that the bird entered from the direction of the morning means that the celebration will be for something new. This may represent a wedding, or a birth. If the bird had entered from an evening direction then it may mean a farewell feast. The landing of a white butterfly definitely means that the island is due to be visited by a high spirit.
Indonesian and Malay islanders have assigned a set of properties to their birds and animals. These properties are not arbitrarily assigned, but refer to the nature and behaviour of the creature. If a seer hears a bird or animal call from a certain direction then he knows from the type of bird or animal the nature of the event, and the timing from the direction of the call. The time of day and the number and type of clouds in the sky provide further refinement of the message. The thoughts of the Shaman at the time of the call or flight etc are also highly pertinent to the interpretation.
Europeans had a rich language of herbs and flowers, based upon the healing properties, the shape and colour of the plants. This system reached its height during the time of the Druids and had a small revival during the reign of Queen Victoria of England.
Many races practised divination by the interpretation of the entrails of slaughtered animals. This only proves that it is not the method, which is important, but the language involved.
The Body as an Oracle
The human body may be used as an Oracle. Consider that the right side of the body represents the material whilst the left represents the divine. Each part of the body represents some aspect of life.
Shoulders may represent either strength or the carrying of a load. Joints represent flexibility. Damage to say the left foot may warn the injured to become more grounded. An injury to the right eye may inform someone to look carefully at a business deal currently taking place or to look more closely at the material aspect of life.
Note that the study of reflexology and iridology stems from the holographic nature of reality. There is a marked similarity between the shape of a foetus and the hand, the foot, the ear, the nostril and indeed the whole body. For example, the parts of the body may represent the following aspects of life:
- Feet – Connection with the earth. Groundedness
- Toes – Balance
- Ankles – Flexibility in matters joining the material and the divine
- Knee – Flexibility in matters relating to movement or change
- Back – Strength and courage
- Shoulders – Ability to carry a load
- Back – Ability to operate under pressure
Sea Shells, Tortoise Shells, Flower pods and Pottery
A common form of divination is the heating of items that will crack. As the item cracks, the shape, direction, position and pattern of the cracks can be interpreted. The top of the item may represent the sacred or unknown, the bottom the mundane, the left and right the future and the past. The shape of the crack and any markings traversed will also provide clues.
The common practice of reading tea leaves is practiced by the intuitive interpretation of symbols.
Cards & Runes
The positioning of “randomly” selected cards also provides an opportunity for interpretation. Versions of this system are the Viking Runes and the Tarot. This is yet again, the intuitive interpretation of a set of symbols, a sacred language.
The Use of an Oracle
The most important ingredient in the use of an Oracle is respect. This respect must be for both the divine and to one’s Self. An Oracle is neither good nor evil. It simply is.
When employing an Oracle
- Respect, respect, respect!
- Ask for guidance or comment only. The Oracle will provide you with information only. You must make the decisions based upon the information provided. An Oracle will not take responsibility for your life. Be warned. If you expect an Oracle to take responsibility for your life then the first thing the Oracle will do, is to teach you that this is not the correct approach.
- Remember that whilst an Oracle may predict the occurrence of certain events, it does so to provide you with foreknowledge that the event is a strong possibility if you continue with your current direction. An Oracle, like any prophecy is only accurate at the time it is given. History is created continuously. Changes of direction will modify the outcome.