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Today's Stichomancy for Stephen Hawking

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Land of Footprints by Stewart Edward White:

chime-bird with his deep double note; or the bell-bird tolling like a cathedral in the blackness of the forest; or the bottle bird that apparently pours gurgling liquid gold from a silver jug. As the jungle is exceedingly populous of these feathered specialists, it follows that the early morning chorus is wonderful. Africa may not possess the soloists, but its full orchestrial effects are superb.

Naturally under the equator one expects and demands the "gorgeous tropical plumage" of the books. He is not disappointed. The sun-birds of fifty odd species, the brilliant blue starlings, the various parrots, the variegated hornbills, the widower-birds, and

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Pathology of Lying, Etc. by William and Mary Healy:

a decisive event in her life. She was in a trolley car accident; after being knocked down she was unconscious for some time. No definite injury was recorded. Her family marked an entire change of character from that time. They say she then began lying in the minutest detail about people and seemed to believe in her own falsifications. Besides this she started the roving tendency which she has shown ever since.

The extensive information which we have received concerning the later history of this remarkable case we can only take space to give in summary. We know definitely that Inez has received attention, during periods varying from a few days to six months,

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson by Robert Louis Stevenson:

but to study oratory and etiquette, sit in the sun, and pick up the fruits as they fall. Navigator's Island is the place; absolute balm for the weary. - Ever your faithful friend,

R. L. S.



THURSDAY. - This day fortnight I shall fall or conquer. Outside the rain still soaks; but now and again the hilltop looks through the mist vaguely. I am very comfortable, very sleepy, and very much satisfied with the arrangements of Providence.

SATURDAY - NO, SUNDAY, 12.45. - Just been - not grinding, alas! - I

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 Kwaidan by Lafcadio Hearn:

-- You must know that the last wish or promise of anybody who dies in anger, or performs suicide in anger, is generally supposed to possess a supernatural force. After the dead woman's mirror had been melted, and the bell had been successfully cast, people remembered the words of that letter. They felt sure that the spirit of the writer would give wealth to the breaker of the bell; and, as soon as the bell had been suspended in the court of the temple, they went in multitude to ring it. With all their might and main they swung the ringing-beam; but the bell proved to be a good bell, and it bravely withstood their assaults. Nevertheless, the people were not easily discouraged. Day after day, at all hours, they continued to ring the bell furiously,-- caring nothing whatever for the