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Pendulum divination is a wonderful tool to enhance your inner insight and divine a path forward based off simple, straightforward answers. At its core, a pendulum is a simple tool that interacts with its user and their unconscious mind to draw out inner truths and appropriate paths based on intuition and deep insight. With this definition in mind, we can move more deeply into pendulum divination in a more meaningful way.
A pendulum is one of the simplest and easiest forms of divination. It’s a simple matter of Yes/No questions being asked and answered. Although you can purchase pendulums commercially, ranging from about $15 – $60, it’s not hard to make one of your own. Typically, most people use a crystal or stone, but you can use any object that’s got a bit of weight to it.
Divination is not fortune-telling. We believe in enhancing your personal power, and that means that no one has the right or insight to be able to predict your next actions in life. But divination, either by your own hand or another’s, is a wonderful tool to offer insight into possible futures available to you if you choose to continue with them. It’s not sorcery, nor is it an act of demonic connection, but rather a simple tool to draw truth from the very real aspects of the higher self and all its inner insight.
Choosing a Pendulum
You should choose a pendulum made from a material that works best for you. A stone type of pendulum should be made from a stone that resonated with you. That harmonious connection will allow for deeper control of the energies and create a stronger place of safety. Pendulum divination is used in many practices. It can be a quick correspondence with your deities, a conversation with your ancestors for guidance, or simply making inquiries to the spirits and energies around you. There are always many energies around us, coming from several different sources. A pendulum works by offering a focusable object for energy to interact with.
Pendulums come in all shapes, sizes, materials, and forms, so choosing your first pendulum for your divination can be difficult. To put your mind at ease, a pendulum doesn’t have to be anything other than what you prefer to use personally. Choose something that speaks to you! It could be as simple as a stone wrapped around a piece of leather, or as complex as an expensive crystal on a fancy chain. As with anything relating to your own personal power, open your heart and let your first pendulum present itself to you. With that said, here are the common pendulum materials and aspects to get you started if you’re new to pendulum work. There are some who love to collect and use pendulums of many different materials and use them for different divinatory uses, but this is not necessary for the beginner.
Making your own Pendulum
If you decide to make your own pendulum, you’ll need a few basic supplies:
- A crystal or other stone
- Jeweler’s wire or string
- A lightweight chain
Take the crystal and wrap it in a length of jeweler’s wire. When you’re done wrapping it, leave a loop at the top. Attach one end of the chain to the loop. You’ll want to make sure the chain isn’t too long, because you’ll probably be using it over a table or other surface. Generally, a chain between 10 – 14″ is perfect. Also, be sure you tuck in any poky pieces of wire, so you don’t jab yourself later.
The base of the pendulum is the heaviest and most prominent part. Choose something with a good weight and a pointed base for a traditional pendulum or find a base that speaks to you personally in a nonstandard material. There is no “right” way to choose.
- Stone – An exceedingly natural aspect of any pendulum, natural stone can be found anywhere and is often one of the most serendipitous materials to build your own pendulum from.
- Gemstones & Crystals – Sought after for their common energetic and astrological correspondences, crystals, and gemstones are extremely common materials for pendulums. Choose one that speaks to you personally.
- Wood – Dense hardwood makes wonderful pendulum material and is the perfect choice for those who love the warmth of wood in their spiritual lives. Make sure to choose something with a good amount of weight!
- Bone – Some like to work with material that has been found in the wilderness. Bone fits the bill for some who respect its organic properties.
Pendulum chains can be made from whatever you find meaningful. A good pendulum chain is flexible and well-worn to ensure good transmission, but anything will work depending on your personal style.
- Leather – A natural material that is common in pendulums. Choose a leather strand that is well-worn and very flexible. Consider treating with oil for maximum suppleness.
- Cotton Cord – Cotton cords of all kinds work very well for pendulums. Consider treating your cord with beeswax or other tacky material to prolong its life.
- Chain – Chains made from common or precious metals are a fantastic choice for pendulum chains since they transmit movement readily.
- Plant Fiber – The most natural path, plant fibers that have been ethically sourced or wildcrafted can offer a beautifully natural choice of pendulum chain. Consider a DIY braided fiber if this is your preference.
Cleansing and Charging your Pendulum
With pendulum in hand, it’s now time to dedicate your pendulum to the divination work you’ll be doing together. This looks different to every single person but commonly involves a simple process of cleansing the pendulum and charging or dedicating it to create a clear working relationship. If this sounds complicated, don’t worry about it. It’s a personal process that you can spend as much or as little time on as you choose. What’s important to understand is that you and your pendulum can form a connection with each other, one that increases the sensitivity and understanding you achieve in your pendulum work.
Cleansing Your Pendulum
Common methods of cleansing spiritual tools include smoke cleansing with incense, water cleansing, and salt cleansing. Whichever method you choose, take time to enjoy the process of starting over both in your own experience and with that of your new pendulum. Remember that some crystals will degrade in salt or water, so be sure to check before you do this. Another option is to leave the pendulum outside overnight in the moonlight.
Smoke cleansing with incense is simple. Pick out an incense that resonates with you. Light it, let it burn for a bit, meditate on it and once you feel ‘right’, move your pendulum through the smoke. Always save your incense ash to make black salt.
Charging Your Pendulum
Charging your pendulum is simply the fun aspect of dedicating or priming your pendulum to work more closely with the energy that is you. There is no special ceremony needed, just an honest and open desire to work together with the elements and materials you’ve chosen to use in your practice. Charging can consist of simply sitting and understanding your pendulum, to actively engaging your pendulum with the desired essence. All this depends on your desire and level of understanding of your own spiritual connection.
To calibrate your pendulum simply means you’re checking it to see how it’s working. To do this, hold it by the free end of the chain so that the weighted end is loose. Make sure you keep it perfectly still. Ask a simple Yes/No question to which you already know the answer is Yes, such as “Am I male?” or “Do I live in the PNW?” Keep your eye on the pendulum, and when it starts moving, note whether it goes side to side, forwards to backward, or in some other direction. This indicates your “Yes” direction.
Now, repeat the process, asking a question to which you know the answer is No. This will give you your “No” direction. It’s a good idea to do this a few times with different questions, so you can get a feel for how your pendulum responds to you. Some will swing horizontally or vertically, others swing in small or large circles, and others don’t do a whole lot unless the answer is important.
A Pendulum in Practice
There are several different ways you can use a pendulum for divination. A lot can be learned with “yes” and “no” answers. The trick is to ask the right questions. Pendulums work well on a simple question-and-answer basis.
Whereas tarot and other forms of highly visual divination can engage a question deeply, pendulum work is often thought of as a much simpler method, though this is not the case for everyone. Pendulum boards, clothes, and cardinal direction work are all wonderfully useful tools to enhance your pendulum divination work.
Pendulum Boards / Cloths
A pendulum board or chart includes the letters of the alphabet, numbers, and the words Yes, No, and Maybe. It can be a simple board made from wood, a cotton sheet, or even just a piece of paper that can be used in your pendulum work. Use a vertical and horizontal axis to differentiate Yes from No. As in, up and down = Yes, and left and right = No.
Use with a divination board: some people like to use their pendulum in tandem with a board – the pendulum guides them to the letters on the board that spell out a message.
Some choose to situate themselves outside while using the cardinal directions as a reference point for their answers. As simple as North to South and East to West being the yes and no, or possible depth of answer as each cardinal direction has importance.
- East’s element is Air, and it’s the location in which the Sun rises.
- It’s the direction of new beginnings and is associated with mental processes, intelligence, and thinking. East is related to life through the soul and the breath. Dealings in this direction hold power of the mind, in soul seeking, communication, and wisdom.
- Colors Red and Yellow are associated with East
- South’s element is Fire, and it’s the heat of the day, noon.
- It’s tied to action, anger, and passion. It’s the ability to create and destroy. South has to do with becoming a stronger person, walking away from relationships, and ending strong ties and/or connections.
- Colors White and Gold are associated with South
- West’s element is Water and is associated with dusk, where the Sun sets.
- It’s in rushing rivers, streams, and oceans. It’s a direction full of emotions. Thunderstorms and full rain showers. The direction has to do with healing, purifying, and cleansing.
- Colors Blue and Gray are associated with West
- North’s element is Earth, and it’s during the night when the Moon can shine
- It’s the place of growth, abundance, returning to the Earth, and death. The direction is associated with most creatures as well as stones, seeds, trees, and plants. Characteristics include solidarity, stability, strength, and endurance.
- Colors Black and Green are associated with North
When dowsing it’s common to be looking for water, but dowsing can be for seeking anything. This method of pendulum use is good for locating lost things. It can be accomplished in many ways, such as utilizing a map, wandering a place, or combining it with other items. If looking for something, draw the layout and let the pendulum move over it. A combination of cards and a pendulum can give deeper meaning to an answer. Lay the cards out and move the pendulum over the spread to see what the pendulum points out.
Trust yourself and your pendulum. It takes time to learn any practice.
Only you can allow yourself to use a spiritual tool to its desired level of effectiveness. It’s a deeply personal process that asks you to become aware of both conscious and subconscious thought and how these relate to physical action. Experiment, let it be fun, switch up your process and see where it takes you. Only you can decide if a tool is helpful and brings value to your life.