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Today's Stichomancy for Leonard Cohen

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Pierre Grassou by Honore de Balzac:

of various dimensions; he piled up bread and cheese on his table, he filled a water-pot with water, he laid in a provision of wood for his stove; then, to use a studio expression, he dug at his pictures. He hired several models and Magus lent him stuffs.

After two months' seclusion the Breton had finished four pictures. Again he asked counsel of Schinner, this time adding Bridau to the invitation. The two painters saw in three of these pictures a servile imitation of Dutch landscapes and interiors by Metzu, in the fourth a copy of Rembrandt's "Lesson of Anatomy."

"Still imitating!" said Schinner. "Ah! Fougeres can't manage to be original."

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Crowd by Gustave le Bon:

force, he would have been tempted to attack them? Having fallen into the hands of a judge disposed to send him to the stake, under the imputation of having concluded a pact with the devil, or of having been present at the witches sabbath, would it have occurred to him to call in question the existence of the devil or of the sabbath? It were as wise to oppose cyclones with discussion as the beliefs of crowds. The dogma of universal suffrage possesses to-day the power the Christian dogmas formerly possessed. Orators and writers allude to it with a respect and adulation that never fell to the share of Louis XIV. In consequence the same position must be taken up with regard to it

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Mayflower Compact:

King, Defender of the Faith, &c.

Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honour of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the first colony in the Northerne Parts of Virginia; doe, by these Presents, solemnly and mutually in the Presence of God and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civill Body Politick, for our better Ordering and Preservation, and Furtherance of the Ends aforesaid; And by Virtue hereof do enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equall Laws, Ordinances, Acts, Constitutions, and Offices, from time to time,

The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche:

within himself which renders obedience, or which he believes renders obedience. But now let us notice what is the strangest thing about the will,--this affair so extremely complex, for which the people have only one name. Inasmuch as in the given circumstances we are at the same time the commanding AND the obeying parties, and as the obeying party we know the sensations of constraint, impulsion, pressure, resistance, and motion, which usually commence immediately after the act of will; inasmuch as, on the other hand, we are accustomed to disregard this duality, and to deceive ourselves about it by means of the synthetic term "I": a whole series of erroneous conclusions, and consequently of


Beyond Good and Evil