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Today's Stichomancy for Sammy Davis Jr.

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Reason Discourse by Rene Descartes:

along different ways, and do not fix our attention on the same objects. For to be possessed of a vigorous mind is not enough; the prime requisite is rightly to apply it. The greatest minds, as they are capable of the highest excellences, are open likewise to the greatest aberrations; and those who travel very slowly may yet make far greater progress, provided they keep always to the straight road, than those who, while they run, forsake it.

For myself, I have never fancied my mind to be in any respect more perfect than those of the generality; on the contrary, I have often wished that I were equal to some others in promptitude of thought, or in clearness and distinctness of imagination, or in fullness and readiness of memory. And


Reason Discourse
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Dawn O'Hara, The Girl Who Laughed by Edna Ferber:

not so? For see, her roses are but withered ashes, eh Anna?"

Deliberately and in silence Anna Nirlanger walked to the mirror and stood there, gazing at the woman in the glass. There was something dreadful and portentous about the calm and studied deliberation with which she critically viewed that reflection. She lifted her arms slowly and patted into place the locks that had become disarranged, turning her head from side to side to study the effect. Then she took from a drawer the bit of chamois skin that I had given her, and passed it lightly over her eyelids and cheeks, humming softly to herself

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from When the World Shook by H. Rider Haggard:

staggered round and round, tearing pieces out of his arms with his teeth. He yelled hideously like one possessed. He grovelled, beating his forehead against the rock. Then he sat up, slowly choked and--died.

His companions seemed to catch the infection of death as terrified savages often do. They too performed dreadful antics, all except three of them who stood paralysed. They rushed about battering each other with their fists and wooden weapons, looking like devils from hell in their hideous painted attire. They grappled and fought furiously. They separated and plunged into the lake, where with a last grimace they sank like stones.


When the World Shook
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 A Prince of Bohemia by Honore de Balzac:

" 'Oh! no.'

"At that La Palferine and a friend who happened to be with him went downstairs with the poor soul, and insisted on putting him into the carriage. It was raining in torrents. La Palferine had thought of everything. He offered to drive the official to the next house on his list; and when the almoner came down again, he found the carriage waiting for him at the door. The man in livery handed him a note written in pencil:

" 'The carriage has been engaged for three days. Count Rusticoli de la Palferine is too happy to associate himself with Court charities by lending wings to Royal beneficence.'