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Go Back   Spiritual Forums > Spirituality & Beliefs > Divination

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Old 06-02-2019, 03:31 PM
pseudonymus pseudonymus is offline
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Divining With Shells

I love divination stuff. Last year I got initiated into an Afro-Cuban religion called "Palo," which is an ancient bantu animistic 'religion' brought to Cuba during the slave trade by the Kongo people captured and brought there. It's a really cool religion, ancient and animistic!

After you get initiated, your Padrino [Godfather] in Palo gives you a set of ancient African [Kongo] divination tools called chamalongos. Chamalongos are 4 disks made of coconut shells. They look like this [mine]:



They have to be consecrated and prepared by your Godfather in front of his nganga for them to spiritually work properly. An "nganga" is a pot with magical and sorcerous fetishes inside of it. A necromantic spirit [spirit of a dead person] lives inside the pot.

Once your chamalongos are prepared, you get a long prayer to say into the chamalongos to "wake" them up and "activate" them before you use them. Then you can use them.

Your chamalongos are the primary means whereby the spirit in your nganga [if you have one, priests and priestesses have one] communicates with you.

You ask a question, and then toss the chamalongos to the ground. Your answer is given in patterns the chamalongos fall into.

You can also use your chamalongos to talk with your nganga to have your spirit teach you how to perform magic, step by step: should I do the ritual on such and such day? Should I use such and such herbs? Do I need other items? And so on.

You can use them to also communicate with your ancestors, to get insights and advice from them. You can also use them to communicate with Nature Spirits, meaning the spirit of trees, plants, and so on and ask them for favors.

In my Chinese & Southeast Asian culture, we use something similar in concept to chamalongos, which are called jiaobei or "moon blocks." They look like this:



In ancient times, jiaobei used to be made from the two halves of a clam shell, but they started making them out of wood. You can find a pair of jiaobei or two at our Buddhist temples, by the Buddha statue. You ask the Buddha statue a question, and then drop the jiaobei, and how they fall will give you your answer.

I find it interesting that, this method of divination is not only ancient, but widely dispersed around many indigenous people in different animistic 'religions.' For example, Santeria uses 4 cowrie shells to divine and talk to sprits with called "Obi." And over in Benin and Togo, where they practice Vodun, they use 4 shells also to divine with.

In my Thai/Khmer culture, the monks use a form of divination to communicate with their spirit teachers. This form is similar in concept to pendulum dowsing, but a ring and rod are used. The rod is placed thru the ring. You can watch a monk use this method to talk to his spirit teacher, before he gives a person a magical tattoo [sak yant] Here.

Besides dowsing instruments, are there any divination tools people use in the Western traditions to communicate with their spirit guides and spirit teachers?
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Old 06-02-2019, 09:55 PM
clover clover is offline
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Wow, what rich information. I have booked mark to read this later when I have more time to soak it. Thanks

I always felt such a deep spiritual connection with the Ocean and all it's wonder. I love picking up shells and discovering sea amenities. I always felt a mystic & divinity type energy just putting a shell to the ear.
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Old 07-02-2019, 04:19 AM
pseudonymus pseudonymus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clover
Wow, what rich information. I have booked mark to read this later when I have more time to soak it. Thanks

I always felt such a deep spiritual connection with the Ocean and all it's wonder. I love picking up shells and discovering sea amenities. I always felt a mystic & divinity type energy just putting a shell to the ear.

We use actual sea shells regularly in the religion of Palo. The sea shells are called "Vititi Nkobos." Vititi means "See/Vision," & Nkobos means "Shells," together in English they funnily mean "See Shells."

I don't have the Vititi Nkobos yet. You have to be a priest or priestess to have your own set. But they look like this:



The Vititi Nkobos are used to actually perform "fortune telling" readings. Each number of sea shells facing up has its own ancient set of meanings. They are really accurate, when done by an experienced priest/ess.

Santeria has their own system of fortune telling with sea shells called Dilogun, you can watch a video about it Here.

In Nigeria and neighboring regions, there is a divination system called Ifa, and Afa or Fa in Voodoo [Benin] which uses sea shells. You can watch a man show how it's done Here.

Using sea shells to divine with is ancient. Over in Benin - Voodoo capital of the world, where Haitian Vodou came from - the priests use 4 sea shells to speak with their fetish statue. You can watch a priest use them in this part of a video: LINK, [note: there is a graphic part in the clip where they offer a rooster to the spirit to heal someone of cancer.

This video explains the Jiaobei, and how to use them: Video.
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Last edited by pseudonymus : 07-02-2019 at 05:17 PM.
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Old 14-02-2019, 11:10 PM
Chrysalis Chrysalis is offline
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Thank you very much pseudonymus for sharing these divination systems. I didn't know such methods existed. If I did a google search, I'd probably never find it.

I use dowsing with my body for quick and easy answers. Sometimes I use a pendulum. I'm learning the Elder Futhark runes. Now when I really want to communicate with my Guides, etc, I use telepathy so I can either receive Their messages or have a conversation depending on the situation.
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"The Children of God were moulded by the Hand of God which is called Awen..."
The Kolbrin Bible, chapter 5, vs 1

"But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee:

Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee."
Job 12: 7 and 8 (KJV)
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:28 AM
BigJohn BigJohn is offline
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Super great idea using coconut shells!


I always love old, traditional ideas along with new ideas.
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