I?ll do my best to add on. Bone readings, otherwise referred to as ?throwing of the bones?, have roots extended but not limited to the far east, certain parts of Africa, and North America. This form of divination was practiced mainly by knowledgeable and respected members of the community and served as a way to predict the future, tell of certain illnesses that a person might have, and contact spirits etc. Every so often the diviner?s skill was tested by being asked why the individual was there or by being misinformed of the particular case, so that the person could see whether they were being given valid information or not.
As with most divinations, there is no ?right way? to divine and the systems vary from each distinct cultural group and/or individual. Mainly, it is based on intuition and the particular experience with the tools used. However, some bone formations have been assigned distinctive aspects throughout centuries of practice. As well as, each bone has defining characteristics (depending on which system you are using and from which animal/animal parts the bones come from), or as I think of it, a personality of its own.
The bones are cleaned of the meat (obviously so) and some prefer to boil them before starting to practice. When not in use, they are best kept in a bag, bowl or basket near the altar. Some favor to use shells, stones and other meaningful objects along with animal bones. This practice within African Sangoma and shamans has been referred to as ?basket divining? at times.
An interesting research topic would be the Oracle Bones from ancient China. They used tortoise shells and ox shoulder blades and placed them over a fire that would cause unpredictable cracks in the bone. The ceremonial leader then proceeded to read the cracks.