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Today's Stichomancy for Louis Armstrong

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare:

be loath to fall into my dreams again: I will therefore tarry, in despite of the flesh and the blood.

[Enter a SERVANT.]

SERVANT. Your honour's players, hearing your amendment, Are come to play a pleasant comedy; For so your doctors hold it very meet, Seeing too much sadness hath congeal'd your blood, And melancholy is the nurse of frenzy: Therefore they thought it good you hear a play, And frame your mind to mirth and merriment,


The Taming of the Shrew
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Reason Discourse by Rene Descartes:

the good of others, and that to be useful to no one is really to be worthless, yet it is likewise true that our cares ought to extend beyond the present, and it is good to omit doing what might perhaps bring some profit to the living, when we have in view the accomplishment of other ends that will be of much greater advantage to posterity. And in truth, I am quite willing it should be known that the little I have hitherto learned is almost nothing in comparison with that of which I am ignorant, and to the knowledge of which I do not despair of being able to attain; for it is much the same with those who gradually discover truth in the sciences, as with those who when growing rich find less difficulty in making great acquisitions, than they formerly experienced when poor in


Reason Discourse
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Commentary on the Epistle to the Galatians by Martin Luther:

and repress the lust and desires of the flesh by the Spirit. Not everybody can resist temptations with equal facilities. Imperfections are bound to show up. But this does not prevent them from being holy. Their unintentional lapses are forgiven if they pull themselves together by faith in Christ. God forbid that we should sit in hasty judgment on those who are weak in faith and life, as long as they love the Word of God and make use of the supper of the Lord.

I thank God that He has permitted me to see (what as a monk I so earnestly desired to see) not one but many saints, whole multitudes of true saints. Not the kind of saints the papists admire, but the kind of saints Christ wants. I am sure I am one of Christ's true saints. I am baptized. I believe that

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 Rezanov by Gertrude Atherton:

hers. It lingered, and she stared up at him, help- lessly, her eyes wide, her lips parted. She reminded him of a rabbit caught in a trap, and he had a sud- den and violent revulsion of feeling. He rose and offered his arm. "I should be a brute if I kept you talking out here. Slip off and go to bed. I shall start the guests, for I am very tired myself."

XI

He did not talk with her again for several days. He called in state, but remained only a few moments. His officers went to several impromptu dances at


Rezanov