I remember discussions with other rune readers about whether the rune Is represented constriction or opportunity. Some read it as the river being frozen stopping the ships from traveling. Others said that it meant that you were now free to travel, as the ice made a natural bridge over what had been a barrier.
That pretty much describes the difficulties of divination. Any decent symbol has layers of meaning, and the seer needs to intuit which one is being intended in any given situation. Some say that the tools of divination are no more than prods to get our psychic mojo working, and that’s where we get the messages. Others say that the tools are full of their own energy and wisdom and we need only read what they say to the best of our ability.
Humans certainly can do readings with no tools at all, so that might lead one to believe that they simply help us find inner knowledge we could, theoretically, access without the tools. Returning to the first analogy, a person could theoretically, swim across an unfrozen river, if he had that skill, but he’d need the tools: the ship, if he wanted to carry goods on the river, if he wanted to get far. We tend to be able to do better at almost anything with tools, although we do have to learn how to use them, just as we learn to do somethings without them.
We can walk on ice, we can even go faster (on skates) on ice than just walking. It also does require a different skill set to negotiate that form of movement. I might be as likely to end up on my butt as not if I tried to rush on the ice, but I recognize that what’s true for one person is not true for another. No matter the situation, whether in a reading or just trying to walk down a winter street, we have to take into account everything we know about the person and the situation, as well as our initial reading. The point of almost any reading is to find out more information so we can work to the best outcome for ourselves.
Think about it- are you going to go to a doctor and tell him nothing, but demand he give you a diagnosis based on whatever observations and tests he can do? Or are you going to collaborate with him, share what you know to try to get the best outcome for your health. Sure, if he got it right when you told him nothing, you could be impressed at his expertise. But testing him is rarely what we go to a doctor for. We want our best health outcome. Similarly, if you are getting a reading, sharing what your situation with will help the reader give you the most useful information using their tools and talents.
The best reader will help you use your knowledge to figure out whether this frozen river is providing you with an opportunity to cross without a boat, or whether it’s going to keep you from shipping your goods. Readers will look at the many layers of meanings, and help you see beyond what you knew before you came to them. The role of a reader is not to tell you what to do, or what’s going to happen, but to offer you options, so that you have more choices.
I hope that helps anyone who hasn’t had much experience with divination up until now.