Modern Divination - Runes


Hecate's Blessing

Runes are based on an archaic German and Scandinavian alphabet, myth says that Odin discovered the meaning of  the runes as part of his nine day trial while hanging from Yggdrasil, the world tree.  The word rune is interpreted as to mean letter and secret.  He hung there forbidding any assistance until the pool from which Yggdrasil grew revealed the secrets of the runes to him. It is said, he gained the power to heal his wounds, to bind his enemies and protect his friends. He was able to gain lovers, banish malevolent magic and even wake the dead.
Elder Runes - Wiki Commons

The translation of Hamaval


I trow I hung on that windy Tree

nine whole days and nights,

stabbed with a spear, offered to Odin,

myself to mine own self given,

high on that Tree of which none hath heard

from what roots it rises to heaven.


None refreshed me ever with food or drink,

I peered right down in the deep;

crying aloud I lifted the Runes

then back I fell from thence.   ----- MORE

Today many wade out in the murky waters of  life, hoping to glean the knowledge that Odin sacrificed for. One such reader is Maggie Cunningham. Maggie agreed to share her process and her inspiration for her journey into the mystical world of divination through runes. Maggie works in Rune readings and seership.

I presented Maggie with the following questions:

Q: How did you get started?

A: I saw my first rune book in the 1990s, I've been hooked ever since.  I have read for friends since then and began reading professionally in 2010.

Q: Explain your process for getting started with a reading.

A: I create sacred space and invoke spirit for guidance.  This is often my client's Disir circle (circle of guardian spirits in the northern tradition) but other guides do come through depending on the client.  I discuss the intentions for the reading with my client and then clear the rune bag to prepare the runes for the reading.  This ensures there aren't any residual energies in the bag that could cloud the reading and also let's the runes know we're about to read.  I then connect with my client while holding the runes.  The 'shape' of the reading comes through at this point.  Sometimes its a free form casting (throwing the runes upon a cloth) at other times a particular spread may come into my mind.

Maggie Cunningham - Casting Runes
Casting Runes - Maggie Cunningham

Q: How does the information come to you?

A: I combine kinaesthetic, visual and auditory information.  The runes tingle under my fingers so I know which ones to pick and the order to read them in.  I often see pictures as we are reading as well as hearing advice from the rune's themselves and the person's guiding spirits. 

Q: What other information would you like to share with my readers?

A: I am a northern tradition trainer and run courses on reading with the runes as well as using them for magics, healing and mysticism.  I also combine rune readings with birth runes work (based in runic astrology).

Maggie Cunningham - Rune Spread

I want to take a moment to thank Maggie for participating in our this exploration of divination via runes.  Be sure to visit Maggie at her website or via reach out to her via email at

Modern Divination - Crystals and Crystal Grids

Crystal healing has been around for centuries. My interest in crystals started as a small child looking for that "sparkle" amongst the common stones. Just last year I finished my crystal healer certification in 2018 and found that it was indeed not only a passion due to the beauty with in each piece but also because of the amazing power that emanates from each delicate facet of these stunning creations.

I remember my first crystal ball and the power I felt from it. I remember wearing my crystals of assorted types and remembering how they changed the world around me.  Wearing my amethyst ring for example lead to a higher bar tab. It was like the alcohol couldn't find me. 

My clear quart giving me the power to feel centered and the ability to take on the world. My labradorite to clear energy and help me follow my dreams.

So what is a crystal grid and how does it work?  Crystal grids is an alignment of crystals set to a geometrical pattern for the purpose of manifestation. There is a center stone with is the focus of the energy and the surrounding stones that modify and broadcast the intention into the universe.  Amplification stones, generally quartz crystals are then used to "power up" the grid. Finally the grid is activated.  It is a pretty powerful process and if you have the opportunity to learn more I highly recommend checking it out. I have several posts in this blog related to crystals.  Here's a link for your convivence.

When I met Crystal online, I was drawn to her carefree and playful energy. We have known each other for quite a few years and I have worked with her on several occasions to create jewelry and clay creation from her earthen treasures. 

I have always loved her crystal grids and when I thought of this project I knew I wanted to get her amazing grids in front of you.  I was thrilled when she agreed to participate.

Photo Credit - Crystal

Here are her interview questions.

Q: How did you get started?

A: I started digging quartz in Arkansas about a decade ago .I was amazed at how it feels to be the first person to touch these amazing gifts from earth.  I was researching what all  I could do with the crystals once I had dug them. I eventually tried a few grids and when I made one for my boss to win a fishing tournament (that failed) I revisited my intent and purpose in making the grids. I also moved to an area known for more mineral variety and my collection grew immensely. It allowed me to learn even more about our connection with earth.. I believe the crystals /grid components find us. They are a gift and should be used for positive intentions. Since then I've had great luck with every grid I've built. 

Photo Credit - Crystal

Q: Explain your process for getting started with a reading.

A: Before gridding I like to set intentions, research needed materials, then ground and cleanse my work area energies.  I set my grid with intention then charge it. 

Q: How does the information come to you?

A:  The information has always somewhat come intuitively. I sit quietly with all the different specimens I use. When I first started I read every book, I researched all over the web and I asked other healers for direction. I also meditated with different minerals to understand their energy. I can then use that information when charging the grid with my intentions. 

Photo Credit - Crystal

I want to take a moment to thank Crystal for participating in our this exploration of divination via runes.  If you'd like to contact Crystal, please leave a comment on this blog and I'll see that she gets your message.

Modern Divination - The Tarot

 The Tarot has always fascinated me.  I have completed numerous reviews over the years on Tarot decks of shape and fashion for this blog. I have even participated in a Tarot card project where I was cast to represent several of the cards. My favorite by far was recreating The Star card. (image below)

Photo Credit  - Renee Sosanna Olson

The Female Mystic Project was an amazing experience. I really enjoyed researching the card I was to represent and trying to convey that messing in the photo.

So what is Tarot?  Tarot is a deck of cards separated in two main groups (Minor and Major Arcana) used for the purposes of divination or fortune telling. The earliest mentions of tarot dates back to the French 1400's.  With the rise of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in the 1880', Tarot traveled across the English speaking countries where it eventually found it's way to the creation of the Rider-Waite Deck we are all so familiar with today. 

By Pamela Coleman Smith - a 1909 card scanned by Holly Voley ( for the public domain, and retrieved from (see note on that page regarding source of images)., PD-US,

The table below from Wikipedia shows the progress of the Major Arcana cards from their creation up to the Crowley and Rider-Waite decks.

The process for reading cards varies from reader to reader. Even the guidance on obtaining cards has its own set of mystery and superstition. Do you buy a deck or should it be gifted (or even stolen). Should anyone else touch  your cards? Should they live in a wooden box or velvet bag?  A quick Google Search will let you know that EVERYONE has an opinion on this. (LOL)

So what about the act of reading? Each reader has their own process for preparing for a reading as well as providing that reading for a client. There are as many variations are there are Tarot decks. One process isn't the be all end all process for using this tool. Amazon returned over 7000 results for a search on this single product.

To get some insight on what a reader's thoughts are, I contacted Alexis, The Bonesong Witch to share her process with us. She is a reader of Tarot and a hunter of  Irish Totems.

Here are her interview questions.

Q: How did you get started?

A: I found I had a penchant for it, when I picked up a deck and started practicing with the Tarot. There was an immediate bond, and I've had a relationship with Tarot for 25 years now. I see Tarot as both and entity and the spirits of the earth. I actually started off reading Totems for people. That came from an exploration of Native beliefs by way of a dream/vision I had while meditating. I met with Native leaders that were in the Virginia Beach area at the time, and was taught their way. I then dug into my own ancestral past, and found that totems are a part of nearly every indigenous culture in the world. I am careful not to present my was of totem-hunting as native to the Americas. Rather, I do work with the spirits of the land in which I was born, as well as those of my ancestry.

Q: Explain your process for getting started with a reading.

A: Usually, I will cleanse the space with dragon's blood resin or a blend that I order from Tree of Life Apothecary in North Carolina. I may or may not light a candle, depending on the situation, and I ground. I cannot emphasize how important grounding is when working with Tarot or with Totems.

Alexis - The Bonesong Witch

Q: How does the information come to you?

A: I just "know" something that I didn't. I know that's a strange explanation, but my accuracy does come from the fact that I allow Tarot to "tell" me things, and then I give that information directly. I have a geis to only tell the truth, and not skirt around what I see or know to be truth from it. So far, I've never had a person tell me that what I told them wasn't spot-on. When it comes to totem readings, I spend more time exploring each of the person's directions and allow the totems to speak for that direction.

Q: What other information would you like to share with my readers?

A: I'm happy to answer any questions they may have, or help new tarot readers or totem hunters, as well.

I want to take a moment to thank Alexis for participating in our this exploration of divination via Tarot.  You can reach out to her via her website or via email.