Divination is dismissed as superstition on one hand, and credited as the means to gain divine insight on the other. It is reviled by religious authorities and dismissed by the scientific community despite that all three of these share a common root, and language and practices besides. In fact, they are so similar that, like the language of religion and science, the various divinatory practices carry the same cultural message as them – of power-seeking as higher purpose. Therefore, the drive for power is seen as an essential part of divination, just as it is thought that contact with a divine agency is one of its crucial elements.
Or maybe it’s…
But, in this blog, I make use of findings in such fields as anthropology and evolutionary biology to argue that divination’s earliest ancestor was very likely egalitarian and relational. I want to show that its connection with the gods stems from the ancient understanding that these are integral to the natural world. And I want to share my view that divination is not grounded in superstition but homeostatic regulation. I will acknowledge that divination is not necessarily those things anymore because the rise of agriculture and civilisation and the dominance of the masculine and organised religion domesticated it.
Can we ever go back?
My argument will never be that we can return to a primal divination because all the years cannot be unlived, nor the changes undone. Moreover, whilst that earliest divination made sense to our hunter/gathering nomadic ancestors, it could not offer us the same meaning because our lives are different and we are changed and tamed and live under polluted skies in environments which yield reliable 24-hour data.
So what then?
Instead, I think it possible to rewild it or, in other words, retrieve divination from history’s trashcan for bad ideas and use an understanding of its most basic form to reawaken our instincts and respect for our bodily wisdom, and rekindle our love and reverence for the natural world and its cycles of growth and decay.
Who do I think I am to suggest this rewilding lark?
But before I get on with that, I must introduce myself and tell you something about my orientation. I am Helen Beers and I work as an astrologer. My academic awards are in religious studies and cultural astronomy and astrology and I draw on these subjects here along with several others. Besides that, I am a forager, herbalist, socialist, equalist and agnostic – although I do have a favoured theme for universal meaning. This is that the universe is one of an infinite set of nested holons. It is a whole itself and we are all individually complete holons within it. But, simultaneously, we are integrated and interactive parts of it and every other holon, each requiring the other to function – something like the Great Chain of Being only emphasising interdependence rather than the distracting hierarchy.
About my day job:
I’m an astrologer with 8 years experience working directly with clients through questions relating to relationships, finances, career direction and motivation. I also work in an advisory capacity with other professionals in such fields as psychology and kinesiology. My style particularly compliments herbalism and methods of energy healing and I specialise in helping with chronic health conditions including sleep disorders, eating disorders and weight problems, autoimmunity and related conditions such as thyroid disorders, gut problems and IBS, and menstrual and menopausal difficulties. Here are a few testimonials. Contact if you would like to know more.