Sticks, Stones, and Bones; Divination Through Casting Objects
wonderful friend @peacock-witch and I regularly Skype and have fun
divining with found objects. This means, whatever is at hand! One
night I picked up a pack of cigarettes and started tossing them in
the air to see how they fell. Thus was born my love of casting
objects to divine. Casting objects is simple, easy, and super
“witchy” and in my opinion quite fun and accurate as well! All
you need is a selection of two to ten power objects.
What are power objects?
In this context, a power object is whatever has special significance or meaning to you. Just as a deck of tarot cards has 78 distinct meanings to it, your collection of power objects will each have their own distinct meaning. When you cast them on your cloth, the way these objects fall in relation to each other will determine what the reading is.
Here are some ideas of what power objects could be and what their meanings might be:
stones: Use traditional magical
meanings (love, strength, wisdom, protection, etc.).
ogham: Include a full set of
runes or ogham sticks, or include certain ones that have special
significance to you.
lighters: Guiding light,
technology, civilization, fire element.
Air element, communication, travel, motion, movement.
Sickness, indulgence, hedonism, disease.
Family, bond, friendship, trust.
Answers, wisdom, truth, opening, awakening.
Wealth, prosperity, earth
beads: Creativity, glamour,
manipulation, water element.
A state of being unwell, problems, where healing is needed.
High energy, energy blockage, energy containment, energetic flow has
or pencil: Society, lawfulness,
rules, order, regulations.
Sweetness, well-being, happiness.
figurines: Use animal lore and
meanings to determine what the animal should represent.
Brain, intelligence, mind, cunning.
stick: Bridge, pathway, path,
and needles: Pain, attack,
aggression, fear, worry, unease.
You can really pick up any object around you, assign it a meaning, and cast it with your power objects. Over time you will gain the discernment to tell when an object adds meaning and depth to your readings, or when it becomes clunky and unwieldy. At the start, just cast 2-5 power objects; as time goes on you should experiment with adding more and seeing how it affects your reading. Don’t be afraid to add or especially remove objects that aren’t working for you.
It is a good idea to search for object that are equal in size. For example, casting 5 cigarettes may be a more balanced reading than casting a dime, a lighter, and a crow’s feather. When objects are similar in size they fall similarly and may provide with a more balanced reading to start with, or at least, a reading that is easier to read! This is in my own experience however, perhaps to you the size of the items doesn’t matter at all.
So where do you find power objects? Anywhere! @peacock-witch and I pick up whatever is in the room with us and figure out a way to divine with it. To make that list of objects above I just sat still and looked around my kitchen. Even carrots and celery sticks will do if you’re really short on objects to toss around.
Remember that you can mark on or alter your objects! I draw meanings on the filters of cigarettes. You can draw symbols on coin with permanent marker, write words on Popsicle sticks, or dab paint on figurines to give them extra meaning.
Put meaning to your objects
The way your power object collection looks will reflect what type of questions you want to divine for. If you want to do love divinations you may have five different objects each representing a subtle form of love. If money is your concern, you may have extra objects representing the economy, cash money, debt, savings, wealth, and financial players.
Assign one object to represent the person you are reading for. Suppose you are using Skittles to divine. Red can represent the person you are reading for; Green stands for love, yellow for wealth, purple for spirituality, and orange for success.
Experiment with different meanings for your objects. See what group of meanings works well together. You should be quickly able to tell what meanings work as a group, and what are clunky, redundant, or nonsensical.
Trust your throw
Just as you trust tarot cards to come up correctly, you need to trust your power objects to come up correctly. What works for me, and for many other readers, is to have a ritual you follow each time you cast for a question. One such example ritual is to hold the power objects, focus on your question, then cast in the same way every time.
Observe the fall
Once you have focused on your question and cast your power objects, the real fun begins!
Let’s go back to our Skittles example. Suppose you want to divine a person’s love life, so you cast the red candy (the querent), the green candy (love), and the orange candy (success). Now, you read the position of the candies to determine whether or not love will soon be in their life. Suppose the person is closely touching love but is far away from success. Maybe this means they will get very close to their goal but never be successful. Or, what if it means they do not need to be successful to find love? As a reader it is your job to interpret how the candies fall.
at how your power objects are oriented on the board.
Do they appear to make a shape or picture? Do all the power objects
appear to be pointing towards one side of the board? Do they give you
a feeling of active motion, or a feeling of stillness? Do some seem
to be clustered together as if they are stuck in a gravity well, or
are they spread outwards as if there was an explosion? Take time to
consider the board as a whole and the entire picture made by the
at how your power objects interact with each other.
Are some objects touching or even stacked on top of each other? Do
some objects seem to mirror each other across the board? Are two or
more objects pointing at each other or facing away from each other?
Consider everything!! This is the true fun and excitement of casting
power objects :3 Take time to consider the objects individually and
how they interact with each other.
Casting power objects is an especially useful form of divination to use when you want to determine the nature of relationships between things. It is a powerful system because you can select as many objects as you want and give them their own meanings, as opposed to runes or tarot where there are a set number of meanings for a set number of objects. It is also impressive because you can pick up literally anything and cast it, and you will be able to divine (once you get the technique down of course!)
My advice is to be careful about how you label your objects and pay special attention as to how the objects interact until you get a good team of power objects working for you. Also make sure to keep looking for new levels and depths of meaning. Group readings are a great way to get new levels of depth in your readings, by having multiple friends each read the same spread and share their interpretations.