Divination comes from the Latin word ‘divinare’ meaning “to foresee, to predict, to prophesy and is related to the Latin word ‘divinus’ or “to be inspired by a god”. It is the attempt to gain insight into a question or situation by way of a process or ritual. Methods of prophesy have been used in various forms throughout history. Those querying an oracle interpret how a seeker should proceed by reading signs, events, or omens.
Divination can be seen as a method whereby certain features of our lives are interpreted in ways that may provide insight into our problems and challenges. Divination and fortune-telling are usually different in that divination is more a ritualistic practice and is usually enacted as part of a religous ceremony, as seen in traditional African medicine. Fortune-telling is a more of a practice that is used for personal knowledge, information or insight. The numerous divination methods vary by culture and religion.