Many ancient peoples believed in divine revelation through dreams, and the Greeks of this period of history were no exception, greatly appreciating onimorancie.
The Oneiroi (= Songs in Ancient Greek) were even deities who personified dreams. And their dreams conveyed the will of the gods.
The ancient Greeks practiced divination in oracular sanctuaries.
In Homer, Odyssey, (XIX, 535-550)
Penelope says to Ulysses
Come! Advise me: a dream has come to me, which I’m going to tell you… ‘
So their divinatory practices included interpreting their dreams, which they took very seriously, analyzing omens, coincidences, the flight of birds, interpreting the shapes and reflections of the viscera of sacrificial animals, and interpreting the flames and smoke of animal sacrifices.
ORACLES OF THE HARUSPICES
The haruspice was the diviner who read the future in the entrails of sacrificed animals.
Divination is attested in Rome as early as the 3rd century BC.
The Latin verb divinare translates as “to forebode, to guess, to foresee” and is synonymous with the Greek mantikê ,
The practice of divination was linked to their religion, as it not only foretold and predicted events, but also gave the will and advice of their gods in the situation at hand.
Some oracular sites are still famous today, such as those at Delphi, Dodona or Olympia, while others have been somewhat forgotten. However, archaeological or iconographic evidence of these communications between man and his deities can be found in Zeus and his son Apollo, the two main mantic deities of the Greek pantheon.
At the center of the sanctuary, the Pythia sat with a veil over her head and laurel and phiale as offerings. The God answers questions through the mouth of the Pythia.
There is evidence that poets devoted themselves to putting divine answers into verse.
The Romans, for their part, mainly used it to get the gods to validate their political or military strategies, asking them, for example, whether or not they should engage in battle.
However, when a Roman found himself at a crossroads in his personal life or work, he didn’t hesitate to use bibliomancy. From a passage or phrase in a book opened to a random page, he would draw the divine answer.
FRANCE, in the 16th century,
His work ‘Les Prophéties’ may not have been a major success, but his annual prognostications were eagerly awaited.
Michel de Nostredame (known as Nostradamus) was born in 1503, a physician and apothecary who, like many doctors of the time, was also an astrologer.
His astrological predictions were so successful that he was visited by King Charles IX and given the title of court physician.
The Polish engineer Stephan Ossowiecki (b. 1877) was one of the most gifted clairvoyants studied by metapsychists in the 1920s. His paternal grandmother was renowned in her entourage for her gift of lucidity, his mother and one of his brothers also possessed it, and from childhood he noticed that he was capable of guessing the thoughts of his playmates.
According to Dr. Geley’s biography in his book L’ectoplasmie et la clairvoyance, the young Pole studied engineering in Petrograd, Russia, and began to make a name for himself with his strange abilities. At his school, candidates were asked on exam day to draw a subject from among sealed envelopes, and Ossowiecki, to the amazement of his teachers, managed to answer the questions without opening the envelopes. His reputation as a clairvoyant spread to Poland, where Richet met him in 1921. In 1923, the Institut métapsychique invited him to Paris to study his metagnomic faculties.
Stephan Ossowiecki, POLAND and RUSSIA
He was born in Moscow in 1877, his father a scientist and chemist who founded a chemical company, his mother a member of the Eastern Polish aristocracy. And he spoke Polish, his mother tongue, as well as Russian, French and English.
He graduated in engineering from the Saint Petersburg Institute of Technology.
His mother and grandmother were both clairvoyants who practiced automatic writing.
He remained very humble yet a bon vivant, enjoying good food, good wine and the company of women, and one of his dreams was to demonstrate that human beings had unacknowledged clairvoyant powers. He offered his services to scientists working on clairvoyance. At the same time, he helped archaeologists with his fantastic gift.
During the Second World War, instead of leaving Warsaw where he was, he chose to stay and use his gifts to help families searching for their loved ones taken prisoner by the Germans. In August 1944, like everyone else in his neighborhood, he disappeared.