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Telling Fortunes by Tea Leaves

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CHAPTER V
SOME HINTS FOR DIVINERS
REMARKABLE INSTANCES OF PROPHECY BY THE TEA-LEAVES
"For a man's mind is sometimes wont to tell him more
than seven watchmen that sit above in a high tower."
To those of an inquiring or doubting turn of mind, there may
arise the very natural question as to why one shaped tea-leaf
should mean "a hat" and another "a table." It is useless to point
out that these objects are perfectly represented by the leaves.
That is of no practical satisfaction. The simple fact that each
language has its alphabet, its spelling, and its words, which
must be learned before there can be any reasonable
understanding of it, seems the best and obvious reply.
Symbolism is a wide subject with many branches. Who can
expect to master even its alphabet in a moment? To those who
cannot accept the symbols in the tea-leaves on the authority of
past experience, reaching over several centuries, I would recommend a careful study of their
cups for, say, three months. Let them make notes of such signs as appear and beside them
place their meanings and predictions.
At the end of this time, compare all that has taken place with these notes, and I think there
will be no further lack of faith in the tea-leaf symbols.
Before very many years have passed the language of symbolism by cards, tea-leaves, crystal
gazing, etc., will probably be almost universally understood. The day will undoubtedly come
when it will be accepted as naturally as the English language, and we shall cease to worry
ourselves as to the why and wherefore of it all.
It is important that those who are learning the art of divination by tea-leaves should realize
the necessity for consistently attributing the same meanings to the symbols. Do not be
tempted to change their interpretation for what may seem a more probable, or pleasant,
prediction for your client. It is a fatal mistake.
Remember that you are dealing with conditions and events of the future which are outside
the limited knowledge of the normal mind, whose power of vision is limited to physical sight.
A simple instance of what may occur, should you thus change the meanings of the symbols,
will suffice to show the folly of such a practice.
A consultant comes to have her "fortune read." She is known to you personally, and you are
aware that she is anxious to hear a hopeful report of someone dear to her who is ill. The tea-
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