Secrets of Lithomancy (stone or crystal divination)


I have been doing Lithomancy, and other drop stone divining methods for many years now.
And I think it's about time I spilled.

Ya see....for a long time, I didn't really share the details of this, because it was one of those cool rare skills, that I felt would set me apart from other readers at psychic fairs and such.

But because it is a realitively rare method...I have few people to throw ideas off of, or to spark any sort of innovation...or to grow.

And a stagnant method isn't really good at all!

So..I will begin here with one of the basic lithomancy patterns, and sets that I use. well, it's the main one actually.

And if anyone else has a method or questions, or other ideas to share...please do!

The woman who taught me had an unusual method of teaching. She would gather all the stones, drop them onto a piece of fur and then say..."well, what do you see?"
She did not use crystals, per say...but rather a collection of stones, some river rocks, some bones.

I started with her basic correspondances, added a pattern and a few other stones to make things easier for myself, and did a lot of it just by intuition.

Here are the stones I use:

The first sets represent duality and opposites.

MALE...a large phallic piece of what was probably a spoon handle, made from Mother of Pearl. The Male stone represents all the things that traditionally are male characteristics. Drive, determination, agression, risk taking, competitiveness, action, enthusiasm, dominance.

FEMALE...was found in the same button jar as the male...probably a spoon bowl, also from Mother of Pearl. It is round and tapered at one end. It represents those traits traditionally considered to be feminine....Nurturing, patience, reactive, passiveness, balance and feelings.

SUN...a sparkling cut lead crystal, the kind that you hang in a window to make rainbows. It is round, but with a cut edge, make it sort of sun shaped. The Sun represents leaders, and those outgoing, self confident traits.
It represents fame, and speaking, acting, inspiration, loyalty, willpower, strength.

MOON...I had phenominal luck to find a kind of shell called a cat's eye. It is round, has a subtle coloration, and a spiral on the back.It is so very moonlike. It represents annonymity, intuition, spirituality,emotion, rhythems, cycles, movements and changes. a wedge of dark purple amethyst, that has been tumbled. Joy is of! happiness, hope, laughter, mirth, luck and optimism a smokey quartz crystal point, that is shaped a lot like the amethyst above. It represents pessimism, loss, misfortune and sadness.

I will have to continue this post tomorrow when I have more time to write it all out.... but right now, I need sleep.

I may even be able to post a photo of my stones.

....Next come the Sets....


This sounds cool - I look forward to reading more about this. :) I know of someone who has a bag of different crystal tumblestones and gets a person to pull however many and reads them by colour (relating to chakras I think).


Now there's a facinating idea...

I've been thinking about and persistently rejecting the idea of learning about runes since I have so many things to learn within Tarot yet and it would probably just confuse me to start working on a different system alltogether.

But this, wow. It seems like something I could actually make sense of..
Looking very much forward to your next post Chronata. :)


Looking good Chronata.

thanks for sharing your secrets! I'm very eager to learn more about what you are doing with crystals. As you know, I tried to create one of your sets, the one you do on the pentacle, but really rarely use it because I don't really have a working knowledge/information on how to do it...


Thanks for the interest! I would love to see others using this method....and remember if you have any questions as I write all this out....feel free to ask them!
Elf...this is the pattern from the pentacle! :) the sets...
there are two sets of four,
The seasons and the elements.

When I first learned, my teacher did not have the seasons...but I really liked the idea of them,...and wanted a way to represent I had to include them!

The Elements
Like the Tarot, the elemental meanings are pretty traditional ones.

EARTH... I have a beautiful agate full of browns and greens.
Earth represents timing , deliberation, and planning and investing. It is about money, finances, richness, and hard work. Also earthy concearns like the environment. It is the physical realm, and all that is part of it. air stone is a small included tumbled quartz. I have no idea what it might be called. When you first look at it, it looks like a translucent whiteish blob...but held up to the light, you can see a pattern of clouds in it! Air is the mind and the intellect, standing in for decisions, and decision making, writing, puzzles, thoughts processes, and ideas. fire is probably a dyed agate. It has a pattern of swirls and lines, and it is a really bright red. Fire is for speed, and enthusiasm, inspiration, creativity, instigation and the beginning of new endeavors. little blue emotional stone. It is a bright blue, with a small patch of white. And I mean BRIGHT blue. The woman who sold it to me tried to pass it off as turquoise...but it's really clear that it is a dyed...probably salt stone. Anyhow, water is emotion and therealm of the heart. Also music, religion and spitit, feeling,faith, trust and psychic leanings.

The Seasons a small yellow banded agate, obviously dyed bright.Spring represents the season of spring...and days, when dealing with timing issues. It also represents children, childlike wonder, play, joy and smell. summer stone is made of glass. It is something that would normally be set in a piece of jewelry. It is transparent but has colors of pink and green in it, depending on the light. Summer represents the season, and weeks. It is also for Romance, adventure, memories and nostalgia, teenagers and goals. It's sense is hearing. beautiful stone here is likely another agate type. It is shaped like a triangle, the top is clear, and the bottom is a mix of browns and orange colors...very fall-like! Autumn is the season and months...and is about slowing down, harvesting, planning, and the arts. It also represents letting go, clearing away, and anything associated with knowledge, as well as sight. winter is a raw crystal point of the palest lavender amethyst. It looks like an icicle. Winter is all about rest. It represents years,reflection, wisdom, passing the torch, ends of cycles, celebrations. It's sense is taste.

I will give you some more...probably different interpretations of all of these later, as they relate to personalities...but that is a different kind of reading altogether!

The last two stones fill out the rest of my pattern. a tiny heart shaped jade. it is of course, love, and relationships, giving, friendships, pleasure and beauty and harmony. It also represents the tactile sense of touch.

THE CENTER (chaos) the center stone is a bit of a geode that I found near the fence of my grade school. One side sparkles with tiny white quartz crystals, the other side is a dark cavernous looking hole. it looks almost like a tooth.
This one is hard to interpret because it means several different things, depending on the reading. It sits in the center of my pentacle cloth, and often represents the central question, the heart of the matter, the querant, or the important issues. It also represents chaos(if turned over) or order (crystal side up), or represents anything else that is not being represented by the other stones.
It all depends on the question. For instance...someone asks about the car they want to buy...well, this stone would then represent that car, and the other stones, all the influences surrounding the purchase. you got some stones. I included the descriptions of what I use...because the color and shapes are important for the personality readings later...but can use any stones for the drop long as YOU know what they mean! (I have even used bones, peices of candy, copper long as you know which is which!

I will begin the interpretation method with the easy way...that is, using a cloth with a pattern drawn on it.
My cloth is about the size of a paperback book,when I unfold it. It is made from black felt, and has a white pentacle embroidered on it.

Each space of the design houses one stone.
The center stone in the center...the top point of the pent houses Male, the bottom space of the pentacle houses Female.

I tried to do this with all the stones that are each of the points. So Sun and Moon are diagonal from each other in the points....etc. In the spaces, are the elements.
The heart sits outside the pentacle on the top right above Male.

The seasons circle the pentacle on the outside at each of the points.

It really doesn't matter where you put each stone...long as it is consistant. And of course, you don't have to use the pentacle either! Any design will work...if you can place the stones in the spaces. In fact, I sometimes make or draw different cloths for specific questions (much like one would design a new spread for tarot!)

So...taking the stones in both hands loosely, hold them over the cloth...about five inches or so. then relax, focus on the questions...I like to close my eyes....then drop them.

And where they land...they are interpreted....and I will get to this in my next post!


Thank you for this Chronata.
I love how you gather your own stones and charms so they are very personal to you.
And you have connected to their meaning.
I have a pendulum book and it has charts in it sliced up like a pie.
Those charts would make great stone throw question mats.
They touch on dozens and dozens of questions.
I'm going to make my own "bag of bones and stones" and try this out.

Oh, the book is called The Great Pendulum Book ~ by Petra Sonnenberg.
Great book for actual hands on pendulum work.
ISBN ~1-4027-0722-3
Sterling Publishing Co.


This just keeps getting better.
Makes me want to dig out my crystal-collection (small but existing, laying around in a box somewhere) and also make a byline to that little shop where they have tumbled stones of lots of different kinds.

And the possibility of connecting it with my pendulum too.. Even better. :D


lark said:
I have a pendulum book and it has charts in it sliced up like a pie.
Those charts would make great stone throw question mats.
They touch on dozens and dozens of questions.
I'm going to make my own "bag of bones and stones" and try this out.

Oh yes! That's exactly the kind of thing I was talking about! A great pattern, that the stones can fall on to give you insight!

Eco...I think the most fun is in picking the stones. With this particular method...the stones all came to me! But since then I have made a few other sets of diffent correspondances because I just love hunting for the perfect stone!



Allright to recap, you have in your hand...a bunch of stones, or crystals or colored M&Ms or bits and bobbins...or what have you....

they represent:

And you have a cloth with some sort of central pattern, that has spaces for most (if not all) the stones.

After they drop, it's time to look where they land.

I consider anything that falls in the central pattern of the pentacle ...the important present issues.

Stones that fall near the bottom, are outside influences, from the past,
those near the top of the cloth are outside influences that are likely to be in the future.

Any stones that are off the cloth entirely, are not affecting the question at all. Don't worry about interpreting them this time!

I have a good idea what I consider the top and bottom ...or right side and wrong side of each of my stones. As Lark said...they are personal relics of a a sort...and it's good to get an idea of what may be the "head " of each stone....because where the head points or looks to....can be interpreted as much as where it lands.

So....anything that falls into the center pattern will land in one of more spaces, and these are the houses.

Here's an example of how to interpret the houses....

The Water stone is in the house of the Sun.

Water is emotions, and feelings...and the Sun...and it's house.... represent communication and leadership....well, I would read this as someone who needs to express thier feelings...taking a proactive approach to tell someone how they feel.
If the Sorrow stone is anywhere nearby, I would think this is about taking a stand, and telling someone how they have been hurt...or are feeling wounded, or in pain.
If the Love stone is nearby...I would tell the person that they need to open up to thier secret crush and find out if he feels the same way!

Another example...The Moon is on top of the Female stone, and they are in both the houses of Earth, and Joy.

The question was about whether or not the queran'ts boyfriend would ever propose marriage.

Well...the female represents patience and passiveness. The moon on top can be seen as a stone of secrets. Seeing this...I would first ask this woman if she has ever brought up the subject of marriage to her BF? She says I read this already as a woman who is too passive...(and with the presence of the moon...a little moody too!) and needs to be clear in her feelings and communications.
In the house of earth...I would say that there is a money issue. She admits that they really don't have the funds, and are not ready because one of them is jobless. Joy shows that there is really nothing wrong with the relationship in the current state it is why ruin things by rushing into a marriage?

Other stones around these can confirm or deny this idea. In this case Winter was present...a stone that was confirming the need to take it slow.

I hope the examples really show you the type of intuitive reasoning that I use.
If you want more examples...I can probably do an example reading for someone here online after i write all this up!

The best way to start a reading is to take it slow. And as you see each stone think of the keywords...and as you see each house...think of the keywords!
Put the keywords together in your mind...forming a sentence.

And can add the meaning of where the stone is pointing to where it is headed!
A Spring stone pointing towards the bottom edge of the cloth can suggest immaturity, and glorifying or living in the past. It can also represent someone who is playing too much, being distracted and not looking at the problems.

The other good way to begin interpretations, is to start with the Center stone. Where is it? what house? start there...since that is the main issue, and everything else can sometimes fall into place as influences that surround the issue.
That is...if there is a question in mind!
You can do general readings...without a question...but like tarot, it all depends on how good you are at reading the querant and finding out what he or she really wants to know!

good for beginners...because it focuses the reading a bit more.
Ask the querant to choose 5-7 stones at the beginning of the reading. Remove the others, and just have them drop those few.
This allows you to focus on only a couple of important issues or influences.
They will intuitively choose the right stones that appeal to them at that moment, that subconciously represents the needs to be adressed.

I am speaking of using this method to read for others....but of course,you CAN also use it to read for yourself!
I just have a lousy time doing any sort of readings for myself...tarot or otherwise...because I cannot be objective enough.

So...that is the easy method...the use of a pattern does a lot of the work for you.
Next post I will give you some tips on how to read the HARD Way...without a net...and without a pattern!


Chronata, this is wonderful!

I've been thinking about learning some form of stone divination recently and this might just be it!

I've read Runes for years, and love them. Same with Tarot. But I always love to add something different to my reading skills, something to keep clients interested and excited about the readings they get!

Thank you so much for posting this!

It also seems basic enough that I could teach my son to use it as well! He has an affinity for stones and it would be fun going out together to find our stone sets!