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Today's Stichomancy for James Brown

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Voyage of the Beagle by Charles Darwin:

but the steep sides dipped directly beneath the water. The general aspect in consequence was more like that of Tierra del Fuego than of Chiloe. In vain we tried to gain the summit: the forest was so impenetrable, that no one who has not beheld it can imagine so entangled a mass of dying and dead trunks. I am sure that often, for more than ten minutes together, our feet never touched the ground, and we were frequently ten or fifteen feet above it, so that the seamen as a joke called out the soundings. At other times we crept one after another on our hands and knees, under the rotten trunks. In the lower part of the mountain, noble


The Voyage of the Beagle
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett:

always best, 'less you can catch a new one that's fit to make an old one out of," she said, and we gave an affectionate glance at each other which Mrs. Fosdick could not have understood, being the latest comer to the house.

XIII

Poor Joanna

ONE EVENING my ears caught a mysterious allusion which Mrs. Todd made to Shell-heap Island. It was a chilly night of cold northeasterly rain, and I made a fire for the first time in the Franklin stove in my room, and begged my two housemates to come in and keep me company. The weather had convinced Mrs. Todd that it

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from What is Man? by Mark Twain:

words--Free Will--but others.

Y.M. What others?

O.M. Free Choice.

Y.M. What is the difference?

O.M. The one implies untrammeled power to ACT as you please, the other implies nothing beyond a mere MENTAL PROCESS: the critical ability to determine which of two things is nearest right and just.

Y.M. Make the difference clear, please.

O.M. The mind can freely SELECT, CHOOSE, POINT OUT the right and just one--its function stops there. It can go no


What is Man?
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 The Jungle Tales of Tarzan by Edgar Rice Burroughs:

in the trail and covering it with leafy branches. When they had completed their work the structure was scarcely visible.

Tarzan wondered what the purpose of the thing might be, and why, when they had built it, they turned away and started back along the trail in the direction of their village.

It had been some time since Tarzan had visited the blacks and looked down from the shelter of the great trees which overhung their palisade upon the activities of his enemies, from among whom had come the slayer of Kala.

Although he hated them, Tarzan derived considerable


The Jungle Tales of Tarzan