The Most Intriguing Fortune Telling Techniques in History

If you think that horoscopes, palm reading, and tarot cards are the weirdest and most intriguing ways of fortune-telling, then you are up for so much more, so to speak.

Throughout history, people have been obsessed with telling the fortune of a battle, the future of a newborn, or predicting the best time for harvest. This desire to know more is also the base of some of the most intriguing ways of fortune-telling the world has ever seen.

Therefore, without any further ado, let’s see how people engaged in fortune-telling in the past! But, if you want to discover your very own fortune and future, head to and see what the cards have in store for you!


1. Parrot Astrology

This technique implies the use of green parakeets that were trained to pick up tarot cards and was common in Singapore in India. A roadside fortune teller would wait for their customers with the parakeet caged under a tree.

The fortune-teller would then lay down 27 tarot cards. These cards represented the Indian cosmic system. Then, the parakeet would pick a card and return it to the fortune teller – and, thus, your fortune would be read/ interpreted based on that card.


2. Obi Divination

Among African sages, there would be what we now call gifted psychics. These would throw nuts, stones, or shells in their natural state. This type of divination originates within the Yoruba traditions, which, in turn, hails from Nigeria of modern days.

Pieces of coconuts, cowrie shells, or Kola nuts can be used to perform this technique. People would ask yes or no questions, after which the psychic would throw them on a mat and analyze the form that they fall in.
Depending on the used item, other parameters would be used for the fortune-telling process.


3. The Long Man

Cherokee Native Americans have someone who’s called long man – commonly known as a medicine man. In order to tell the future/ fortune of a certain person, they would cast a spell and then ask for a sign.

The long man would always live near a river. This is because, according to them, if the river would flow naturally with nothing happening on its surface – after they had cast the spell -, then long life and prosperity would be ensured for the family of that particular person.

However, even if a single log or leaf would appear on the river, then this meant that the near future would come with a death in the family of the one that wanted his fortune told.


4. Anthropomancy

In order to appease the gods, the Aztecs would often rely on human sacrifices. However, they would also sacrifice people for Anthropomancy – roughly translated to man prophecy.

Babies and children would often be sacrificed for the sake of this technique. If not, people proficient in Anthropomancy would study the entrails of a dead human so that they could predict the future.

This technique implied a lot of suffering as people had to study the way organs were arranged inside the body, as well as how the victims reacted when their chest was cut open and eventually died.


5. The Bottom Line

As you can see, the world had much more than tarot and palm fortune telling techniques. However, some of them were so gruesome that they simply had to be abandoned.

Still, some of these fortunes telling techniques are still used today, by remote or traditional communities. After all, who wouldn’t want to be able to predict their future or fortune?

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