Nivimancy and Kryomancy – Using Ice and Snow in Divination

For some reason this form of divination is very little explored. I suppose people haven’t been thinking that ice and snow suit very well to divination. I have myself created all the methods described here.

New fallen snow can be used the same way as sand in Geomancy. Animals will leave their prints on the snow and these prints can be read. You can also take a stick and punch holes in random on the snow, and then use Geomancy rules to interpret the result.

Take home a handful of snow and let it melt on a clean, plane surface. Look at what was in the snow. There will always be small “impurities”, like ash, insects, seeds and plant particles. There is always the possibility that you find something surprising in the snow, anything from lost golden rings to dog poop.

Ice cubes can be used in divination several ways.

Melting ice cubes and snow form pools of water. Interpret the form of the pool.

Take some ice cubes, as many as there are possible answers to your questions, assign an answer to each cube and let them melt. The cube that melts first is the answer to your question.

You can also write the answers or an oracle symbol in strips of paper, scroll each strip into a ball and put them each into their own hole of an ice cube tray, let it freeze and then let it melt. You can let these ice cubes melt too, and take the answer from the first one to melt, or pop the ice cubes into a bowl and pick one.

Just remember that the strips will be soaking wet, so use durable paper, like wax paper, and waterproof pen.

These could also be used as a party favor or trick, similar to fortune cookies.

You can also use small charms, like with Christmas Pudding, fortune cakes or Scandinavian Christmas porridge. Take an amount of small items, and assign a divination meaning to each one. In the porridge, almonds are usually used, but also a bit of apple for health, a small coin for money, a ring for marriage, heart for love and so on. Use your imagination. It might be funnier to find a small charm in your drink than a wet strip of paper.

You can also hide small items into snowballs, pick one and let it melt so that you can see what you got. And easy “yes or not” divination is done by hiding something black (or any color of your preferences) for “no”, and something white for “yes”. Stones are usually used for this kind of divination. If you use stones, you don’t need to wait until the snow has melted, you can break the snowball right away with your hands and reveal the answer. You could also use the “Witches’ Oracle” stones, or hide runes into the snowballs.

Have you ever heard of a snow sauna? Taking a sauna is great any time of the year. Especially if it is in a traditional Finnish sauna built out of cedar and it is heated by a wood fired sauna stove. It seems that all the stress and tensions of the day are drawn out of the body by the sun's radiant heat that was stored in the wood that is burning. Once the stove rocks are hot the dry heat reaches deep into your body and drains all the toxins out of it. Then it is time to increase the heat by ladling water on to the stove rocks with a loud hissing sound. As the humidity rises your sweat increases removing all the grime and toxins.

A good traditional sauna is usually situated near a lake or river. When the heat of the sauna is almost unbearable and the toxins are on the skins surface you open the sauna door and head for the lakes cold water. A quick dunk in the water rinses all the poisons from your skin. You are now clean, refreshed and many times drained of energy. Only a snow sauna will make you cleaner and more refreshed.
If it is winter time and you live in the Snow Belt along the Lake Superior South shore you have a great opportunity to enjoy the snow sauna tradition. Winter lasts a long time in these big snow areas where in some years there are still snow banks in the cedar swamps on the 4th of July. Cabin fever is a common problem as the cold and darkness of winter and early spring as the months drag on. The snow sauna is a great way to purge your body and mind of this annual affliction.

In some places like the Keweenaw Peninsula snow starts to fall early. November snow accumulations will exceed the total annual snow depth for many Northern cities. However the snow sauna season usually does not start until about Christmas time. The timing of snow sauna season is linked to the depth of the snow. In general snow sauna season begins when the local snow depth is greater than 24 inches.
A snow sauna begins with a normal sauna. However that is where the similarity ends. Once a good sweat is going instead of heading for the lake to take dunk you simply jump into the clean cold snow. It is important that the snow have a good base especially early in the snow sauna season. Powder snow will not support much weight and your snow flop may end up with a hard landing. It is also important that the area that you are snow jumping into is not covered with rocks, brush, sticks and other hazards. An additional hazard can come from a hard snow crust after the January thaw or during the spring freeze thaw period.
As we said a good snow sauna ends with a good snow jump or flop. After you flopped and covered with snow take care to look upon the area you landed. You will be surprised to see dark deposits in the snow. These are the result of the grime and toxins that were in and on your body prior to the sauna. A true snow sauna enthusiast will make several rolls and flops before reentering the sauna for another sweat. A good snow sauna will make your body feel more alive and clean than it ever has. All the symptoms of cabin fever will be gone especially if you take a snow sauna with family and friends.
Nothing beats a snow sauna for improving your health and well being. You really have not lived until you have run out the sauna door and jumped into 3 or 4 feet of snow.