PRACTICE AND METHOD



A wide, shallow cup is the best kind to use for tea-leaf

divination--white if possible. A narrow cup adds to the seer's

difficulties, as the tea-leaves cannot be plainly seen. Small cups, too,

are objectionable for the same reason, and a fluted cup is even worse. A

plain, even surface is required, with no pattern of any kind, as this

has a tendency to confuse the symbols. Indian tea and the cheaper

mixtures, which contain so much dust and twigs are of no use for reading

a fortune, as they cannot form into pictures and symbols that can easily

be distinguished.



Those who desire to have their tea-leaves interpreted should leave about

a teaspoonful of tea at the bottom of the cup. It should then be taken

in the left hand, and turned three times from left with a quick swing.

Then very gently, slowly, and with care, turn it upside down over the

saucer, leaving it there for a minute, so that all the moisture may

drain away.



Some divinators of the tea-leaves insist on a concentration of the mind

during this turning of the cup, as do many cartomantes whilst the cards

are being shuffled; others prefer the mind to be as far as possible free

from any definite thought or desire, simply allowing it to dwell on such

abstract subjects as flowers or the weather. Personally, I advocate this

for both systems of divination; it enables the subconscious mind to

assert itself unhindered, whilst the normal mind is in abeyance.



The turning of the cup before inverting it over the saucer is equivalent

to the shuffling of the cards. It is as a direct result of those few

seconds turning that the pictures and signs are created, the

subconscious mind directing the hand holding the cup. The following

simple ritual is all that is necessary to those consulting the

tea-leaves.



The cup to be read is held by the seer and turned about as necessary, so

that the symbols may be read without disturbing them. This is important,

but no disturbance will take place if the moisture has been properly

drained away. The handle of the cup represents the consultant, also the

home, or, if the consultant be away from home the present abode.



It is necessary to have a starting point in the cup for the purpose of

indicating events approaching near to, or far distant from, the person

consulting. The leaves near the rim denote such things as may be

expected to occur quickly; those directly beneath the handle indicate

present and immediate happenings; those on the sides of the cup suggest

more distant events; whilst those at the bottom deal with the far

distant future.



This method of fixing the time, coupled with intuition, renders it

possible to give a consultant some idea as to when an event may be

expected; but if there be no intuitive sense of time, it will be found

wiser not to be too positive.



The turning of the cup and the draining of the moisture having been

carried out as directed, the tea-leaves will be found distributed at the

sides and bottom of the cup.



For those who wish to use the saucer as a further means of divination,

the following suggestions will be useful.



There must be a definite point to represent the consultant, and for this

reason the saucer is usually rejected. There is also the objection that

it is more difficult to manipulate in the turning. Nevertheless, it is

found to give excellent results, and, if the cup is bare of events, it

is useful to be able to find information in the saucer.



First of all, then, to determine the position of the consultant. Take

the centre of the saucer for this purpose. The circle round it

represents the home, or if the consultant is away from home, the present

abode, and also events near at hand. The more distant circle indicates

those things which are not to be expected for some time. The outer

circle and rim suggest events as yet in the misty future.





When the saucer is used as an additional means of seeking knowledge of

coming events, after the symbols in the cup have been exhausted, it will

often be found that this secondary divination confirms or enlarges upon

that which has already been foretold in the cup.



The moisture and leaves drained from the cup, having remained in the

saucer, should be turned by the consultant three times with the same

swirling motion as for the cup, and the moisture carefully poured away.

The saucer should be held inverted for a few seconds, otherwise when it

is placed upright, the remaining moisture will disturb the tea-leaves.

The symbols are read in exactly the same way as in the cup, the only

difference being the positions representing the consultant, the home,

and the indications of time. These have already been explained.





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