Ancient stories are filled with beverages and fortune telling mixed liberally together. Norse legends, for example, say that Bragi’s inspiring mead was so potent because it had runes blended within, thereby providing deep insights. More in the realms of documented history, Roman sibyls used wine to encourage altered states of awareness so they could become a Divine oracle. This state was called enthcos, which means one with God. Greeks observed any spatters made by wine at gatherings for omens and signs. And in the Middle Ages, the surface of a wine or water cup might be scried for images, by a talented diviner.
Of these methods, I think the scrying or spattering technique is the most serviceable to modern witches. Take a beverage whose color, flavor, or base has symbolic value to the question you have. Pour a little in a dark bowl or cup then follow these instructions based on which method you’ve chosen:
Put a lit candle near the bowl or cup so the flame is reflected in the liquid. Close your eyes for a moment and think of your question. When you have the question fully formulated, open your eyes and watch the surface of the beverage. Don’t try to see anything in particular. In fact, let your vision blur a little.
Wait and see what appears. Sometimes you’ll see symbols in the light reflections, other times movement or clouds. If the latter, movement up and to the right is a positive response; down and to the left is a negative response. Swirling clouds mean there’s no easy answer right now. Symbolic images should be interpreted according to the picture (you may find a dream dictionary helps with this).
If the reading is particularly positive you may wish to drink the beverage afterwards to internalize that future. However, a negative reading might be better poured out to release those bad “vibes” so the earth can carry the energy away from you.
Pour your beverage of choice into a bowl and have a white, absorbent piece of paper nearby. Stir the liquid clockwise with your strong hand while you think of your question. Next, either pour a couple of drops of this liquid onto the paper, or sprinkle some out with your finger tips (flicking it lightly off so you don’t stain your clothing or a table cloth).
From here you can proceed in one of two ways. Some people just let the pattern dry and look for meaning in it then. Other people like to fold the paper while thinking of their question, then open it and observe the results, somewhat like finding images in an ink blot! Both approaches work perfectly well. Just choose one that suits you and feels right at the moment.
In terms of interpreting the resulting patterns, books on tea leaf reading often prove quite helpful here. The images tend to have similar “rough” qualities. You can use the center of the paper to represent the present (or very intimate matters) and the outer edges to represent the future and cursory matters. Where a pattern lands will then help you understand its meaning more thoroughly.
This American Wiccan “How To” Can Be Found Here:
by Patricia Telesco
A Witch's Beverages and Brews shares the wonderful heritage of beverage making and consuming -- how drinks appeared on altars as gift to the gods, where toasts come from, and why we pass wine clockwise around the table. All this lore and superstition combines with modern magickal methods to help you design beverages that quench both physical and spiritual thirst completely while tantalizing your taste buds.
In the later half of the book, each chapter is devoted to a specific theme with a suggested component list, preparation ideas (timing), and a host of recipes for both consumption and spellcraft purposes. Some of the themes that are covered are "keeping love true," "prosperity potions," and "concocting a little luck." Whether you're creating a drink so you can internalize its qualities for daily living, or making it for a friend, there's something here for all occasions, needs, and tastes.