Peter Turner - Vol. 9 Star Sign Divination
STAR SIGN DIVINATION...
Vol#9 Astrological/ mindreading
Introduction When deciding what to write about for volume 9 of the reason that I struggled is that there are a good number left to discuss. I am currently sat on a plane flying to of backward and forwards with myself I had a moment of will.
monthly series I struggled. The of subjects areas that are still Mallorca (Spain) and after a lot realization and epiphany if you
Each of the areas that I have covered in the series so far have all been areas of mentalism that I personally adore and have been obsessed with for a long time and then it hit me – why have I not covered Astrological/ Zodiac based mentalism? It is an area of mentalism that I probably utilize more than any other, just for its sheer simplicity and the impact it has on my audience. It is for me really interesting to present these ideas to you as I feel it shows a growth in myself as a creator, presenter/ performer and a person… A number of years ago (I make it sound like such a long time ago) I said that I would never utilize zodiac work/ star sign divinations in my work. The reason for this is that I saw them as being restrictive being that I had a 1 in 12 chance of being right. HOW WRONG I WAS! I was the one who saw them 1 in 12, my audience certainly didn’t. To some people this is a way of life, a lot of females I have chatted with about this particular subject have gone as far as to inform me that they start their day by reading their daily horoscope. I have gone as far in the past as giving female participants the choice between me divining a friends name, the code to their phone, a star sign and a reading or any other piece of information there is no way that I could know and I can honestly say that most of the time (I would go as far as saying 90% of the time) the participant always chose the star sign and the reading. It’s a piece of information that everyone carries with them at all times and one that is understood by everyone watching the experience. I have really learnt to understand that no matter what effect I perform (even as small as a one in three) is always going to be a lot more impressive to the participant as I can see the method and I understand the mathematics and statistical probability – Because I am trained to see such things. My participants are not… That is not to say they are stupid, as I would never do or think that. After some time I got obsessed with the idea of being able to walk up to anyone, anyplace and at any given time read them in order to be able to ascertain their star sign. All of my preconceived notions went out of the window and now I find performances like this miraculous. Don’t dismiss this area of mentalism, embrace it, utilize it and see for yourself the effect it has on your audience…I promise you it won’t disappoint To go back to pressing a point I made earlier – My Naivety. I would like to draw attention to my thoughts/ comments on anagramming in ‘Biggerfish 2’.
In ‘Biggerfish 2’ I went as far as saying that an anagramming process would be wasted on star signs. – I was wrong and I am not too proud to admit it. I am very honest when I am wrong, I am still learning every day, still growing and I am so proud to have you guys along with me for the journey. I really hope you love this volume, thanks for being a part of my story.
Peter turner 2016
Monkeying around – Zodiac Anagram I am going to get this out of the way early – When deciding to write this volume I had to battle with myself whether to include this or not as one common complaint is that this cannot be performed in any every language. [For details on how to construct your own anagram, see ‘Volume #2 readings’) This is the method I use more than any other just because it is so quick and straightforward, One or two of the other ideas in this volume rely on this principle (not strictly but the essence of) and therefore I feel it deserves a place here in this volume. NOTE TO THE READER*** I would advise regardless of the country you are in (or the language you speak) to pay close attention to the way that this is anagram is constructed and executed as there are lots of other little subtleties and nuances that can be applied to a lot of your Zodiac style routines (detailed in between the lines of the anagramming process). To effectively outline my process of constructing and executing the zodiac anagram I am going to write a hypothetical presentation wherein the participant’s star sign is ‘Capricorn’. I will then breakdown the performance in detail piece by piece outlining all of the nuances and subtleties that I use in performance. I believe this will demonstrate how clean anagrams can look when executed correctly. After first outlining the presentation with just the anagram (as not to make things unclear), I will add pieces of performance/ scripting around the anagramming process to help disguise the anagram further. You will notice that the scripting and choreography is what makes the anagram beautiful. I know you are waiting to get on with reading the anagram, one more thing I promise let me point out a few things that I didn’t like about a letter anagram in conjunction with a star sign. These thoughts may be similar to your own, in which case you will appreciate that things I have changed to make the process logical. The first question I always asked myself was, what the hell does seeing the word have to do with star signs? When you think about something people consider so emotionally relevant, how can you formulate that to just guess the word and almost make the process scientific? The second thing was throwing out the letters in a random order. I never liked that; again, it was something that didn’t make any sense to me. Thirdly, I hated people asking “IS THERE AN XX IN YOUR SIGN?” Are you kidding me? You read people, tell them confidently what letters are in the sign. Lastly, when it came down to the two star signs, I don’t want to ask several more questions, I wanted that part of the process handled beautifully and to make it feel like I really was feeling them as a person and reading them for real.
So I created viable reasons that were logical to wash away the things I didn’t like when anagramming. You might think I was running when not being chased; I would argue that I am just going the extra mile. How did I remedy these problems? I hope you enjoy my take on star sign anagramming. Performer: “Do you believe in the Zodiac or horoscopes?” Participant: “I do.” Performer: “I certainly believe it is a fascinating subject. I am a massive believer in the fact that even though the stars are thousands of miles away, they really can and do have an effect on our lives here and now. I would like to read you, with your permission of course, to not only intuit your star sign, but to learn about you during that process.” Participant: “That is fine with me.” Performer: “We might be a little bit rocky in places, but this is nothing more that connection building. Building a connection emotionally and mentally can take years, as I am sure you know, and I have only known you a matter of minutes. Some people are better at seeing letters, others are better at seeing pictures. I need to figure out how you think. All I need you to do is imagine for me your star sign written in the air. I want you to imagine looking over all of the letters of your star sign and just beaming them towards me. The better you can imagine this the easier this will be for me. There is one thing I will point out: because you have not mentally transmitted a piece of information before, I think we should make this process fun, the quicker your mind spins the easier it is for me to receive your thoughts. I want you to imagine seeing the letters in the star sign in a completely random order. Keep changing through the letters in a random order, any order you choose. Can I take your hands?” The participant gives the performer her hands. Performer: “Don’t say anything unless I ask you a direct question. Focus on your star sign written in the air between us…like…LEO. Are you seeing it there?” Participant: “I am.” Performer: “Great, then we can begin. Keep changing through the letters, stop there, go back there’s an R in this, correct?” Participant: “Yes.” Performer: “There also an A.” Participant: “Yes.”
Performer: “I am getting slightly confused now, like the connection has weakened slightly. There is not a letter I in the star sign, is there?” Participant: “Yes.” Performer: “You are doing perfectly, though I might in a moment have to resort to you focusing on the picture of this star sign. Is there an ‘S’ in there?” Participant: “No.” Performer: “Ok, can you just in your mind count the number of letters in the star sign for me?” The participant starts to count. Performer: “In fact, please focus on this as an image if you can.” The participant starts to focus. Performer: “Wow, this is much better; a wealth of information has just flooded in. (I would usually add scripts here but I will do this later.) I now know you focus on things aesthetically instead of analytically. “You’re a Capricorn, correct?” Participant: “I am!” It’s as simple as that. What I have done is created a logical explanation for a lot of the flaws that I found in common star sign anagrams. Let me point out the star sign anagram I use and then I will go back over the presentation and break it down piece by piece to show you why I applied certain excuses and washes. The anagram You will be throwing out these letters in this sequence: R. A. I. S. E. the word (RAISE) A lot of performers use “R.I.A.S.E.” I have found from a presentational point of view it is easier to remember and flows nicer using “Raise.” Let’s look at this in an anagram. R – No – Leo, Pisces, Gemini | A – No – Virgo, Scorpio | I – No – Cancer, Taurus | S – No – Libra, Capricorn | E – No – Aquarius, Sagittarius
| Aries The chart is incredibly easy to follow. You say a letter and if you get a No you move to the right; if you get a Yes you move down the chart to the next letter. This is the anagram in its simplest form. With presentation it becomes so much more. Let’s look at our example of “Capricorn” again and break it down piece by piece. Performer: “Do you believe in the Zodiac or horoscopes?” Asking this question is the start of the anagramming process. I will base my performance on the participant’s answer. I want to create instant rapport, and therefore the way to do it is to essentially agree with their viewpoint. No performance of mine is ever the same. Participant: “I do.” In this performance the participant does; this is the scenario I find occurs the most frequently. If the participant says No, make judgment on their answer in a positive way. What do I mean by that? Let’s say the participant says no say no. Respond with, “That tells me you are a logical thinker that tries to see the systematic side of things. That’s great, and I think what I am about to show you will fit perfectly with the way you think.” You have complimented them for thinking this way, therefore keeping rapport instead of brushing against the way they think. If the person is on the fence about believing, I might say, “Are you open to experiencing something new and exciting that might change your viewpoint?” Then move into the line below about the stars. Performer: “I certainly believe it is a fascinating subject. I am a massive believer in the fact that even though the stars are thousands of miles away, they really can and do have an effect on our lives here and now. “I would like to read you, with your permission of course, to not only intuit your star sign, but to learn about you during that process.” I ask for the participant’s permission to read them. This suggests that what I am doing is private, and there must be something about to be read, think about this for a second if I weren’t really going to get inside the participant’s mind, why would I ask that question? It gives what I am about to do an instant air of credibility and at the same time I think it is theatrically nice. Participant: “That is fine with me.” In this scenario the person said yes; if the person ever says No, then respect their wishes. Performer: “We might be a little bit rocky in places, but this is nothing more that connection building. Building a connection emotionally and mentally can take years, as I am sure you know, and I have only known you a matter of minutes.”
This is giving you a logical early excuse for getting a No in performance. In this system you will only ever get one No and the no will not seem like a miss. Most systems you get two. I have taken principles from outside of anagramming that fit perfectly to only ever get one No answer, and the one no answer that you will get is in such a logical place it will never be remembered. I always hated the idea of being seemingly wrong after you have been right so many times, and that is one of the main faults with any type of anagram. I really spent time and focus ensuring that I tied these areas up logically. Now I never worry, because the logical justification is more than enough after they agree with it to even think about a miss. In fact, it opens the doors to you being bolder. Performer: “All I need you to do is imagine for me your star sign written in the air. I want you to imagine looking over all of the letters of your star sign and just beaming them towards me. The better you can imagine this the easier this will be for me. The better you can imagine this the easier this will be for me. There is one thing I will point out: because you have not mentally transmitted a piece of information before, I think we should make this process fun, the quicker your mind spins the easier it is for me to receive your thoughts. I want you to imagine seeing the letters in the star sign in a completely random order. Keep changing through the letters in a random order, any order you choose”. Again, another pet hate of mine when anagramming is the seemingly random nature of picking up on letters. We don’t focus on words in a random order, so why would we receive them in a random order? I thought about it, and this seemed very plausible and it gave me an excuse for receiving them in a random order. Performer: “Can I take your hands?” This is theatrical but suggests to the participant that some connection has been created. Why would I do it if it hadn’t? The participant gives me her hands. Performer: “Don’t say anything unless I ask you a direct question. Focus on your star sign written in the air between us…like…LEO. Are you seeing it there?” This is a very important section; the timing is essential here. I first mute the participant— remember at this moment in time we don’t know what the participant’s star sign is. If we get a no on the letter R, we will see looking at the anagram (outlined above) there are three star signs it could be (Leo, Gemini, Pisces). I need to eliminate one of those star signs before any letter is ever thrown out in the eventuality that there isn’t an R in there I need to be on a branch with two signs not three. There is also another reason for throwing out LEO but first let’s take a look at why I mute the participant from speaking.
I ensure the participant never says a word during this first part of the anagram, I need to stop them from saying - “That isn’t my star sign,” when I throw out Leo. I do this by carefully thinking about the way that I throw out Leo, as the timing of this is essential. Take a look at the script, There is a slight pause before the word “like” and then again a pause before I throw out “Leo.” The reason for the pause is because if the participant’s star sign is Leo, they will react as though you got it right and you never need move any further into the anagram. If they do not react as though you hit their sign you need to follow up directly with, “Are you seeing the letters from YOUR sign in the air?” Slightly emphasize YOUR, which suggests that you know Leo isn’t their sign and you were just using it as an example. If it is Leo, this is a miracle and then you move into the reading from here. If not, move straight on. Participant: “I am.” Performer: “Great, then we can begin. The first thing I am feeling is there is an R in this, correct?” I point out that we are ready to begin – Suggesting indirectly that we have not already begun. Participant: “Yes.” In this scenario it is a hit; if in the eventuality it is not a hit, move straight into asking the participant to focus on this as a picture (outlined in this example after the letter S). For demonstration purposes, let’s say the participant had said No; then the signs would now be Pisces or Gemini. I could use Derren’s “Repeat It Principle”: focus on your picture and, while focusing on the picture, just keep saying the title of the picture over and over like Pisces, Pisces, Pisces. If the participant reacts instantly jump on the reaction, “I was feeling that was your sign.” If they do not react affirmatively, simply respond with, “Just repeat it over and over again like that.” Now you know they must be a Gemini. Seemingly, a miracle has taken place. In hypothetical scenario we are using as our outline (Capricorn) there is an R. When we deduce that there is a letter R in their sign we would receive positive affirmation and therefore we would move on through to the next branch of the anagram. Performer: “There is also an A.” Participant: “Yes.”
Performer: “I am getting slightly confused now, like the connection has weakened slightly. There is not a letter I in the star sign, is there?” This is another important line. By claiming you are getting slightly confused, it gives you leeway for a miss. Remember, probability suggests the further you get down the anagram, the greater the chance there is of getting the response of a No from the participant. I have taken this into account and have offered another logical excuse/ reminder to wash away the No, and also I have, if you haven’t noticed, applied a ‘closed question’. The closed question is: “There is not the letter I in the star sign, is there?” Say this with a little bit of a confused tone, and no matter what the participant answers you have prepared an out. Look at the question again more closely, it has enabled us to ensure that your response to the participant’s answer will always be a hit. For example let’s say the participant responds, “No, there isn’t.” - Quickly counter with, “I didn’t think so”, I would then smile like the pressure of doubt has been removed from my mind. Now you would move into the “focus on this as a picture” line. It’s never seemingly a miss. I have had, on one occasion (after mentioning I am losing my connection), the participant’s phone begin to ring, and when the participant stopped it I said, “Ah that explains why. That really threw me off. Where were we?” giving me a logical reason for getting a No later as you can point out that the phone interrupted you and you needed to refocus. In this scenario (the hypothetical one we have created) the response from the participant is a Yes. Participant: “Yes.” Performer: “I might in a moment have to resort to you focusing on the picture of this star sign. An ‘S’ in there?” I have made to the participant several times throughout this anagram a very specific suggestion that this could fail at any moment. I am suggesting that I might fail at any moment. In this scenario I am indirectly blaming the participant for not being able to focus on the letters and that’s the reason we are having to shift to pictures - almost blaming them if I do get the reaction of a no for the reason I am getting a no and therefore it becomes an inadmissible no. In this hypothetical scenario we are going to get a No at this part of the anagram. Participant: “No.” Performer: “Ok, can you just in your mind count the number of letters in the star sign for me?” The participant starts to count.
Performer: “In fact, please focus on this as an image if you can.” The participant starts to focus. Here I apply Michael Murray’s “CUPS Principle”. I would for any other letter apply Derren’s “Repeat It in Your Mind Principle,” but as I strive for seeming perfection on this letter I use this principle. I notice the participant is struggling to count. Had it been Libra it would have been instantaneous, and I cut them off after giving them a few seconds and continue. NOTE TO READER **** I HAVE CHANGED WHEREIN I USE THIS PRINCIPLE! I NOW CUPS AT THE START OF THE PERFORMANCE AS I HAVE FOUND THAT IT FITS THERE MUCH NICER. Performer: “Wow, this is much better; a wealth of information has just flooded in. (I would usually add scripts here but I will do this later.) I now know you focus on things aesthetically instead of analytically”. I now claim that a wealth of information has come through based on them thinking in a different way. This gives you a perfect example now to read the person and at the same time wash away the miss by simply claiming to have discovered how the participant thinks. Remember, you told the participant right at the start that you needed to find the connection. Performer: “You’re a Capricorn, correct?” You now nail the star sign. Your work here is done, you have gained your credibility and with no props (not that props are an issue) collected several pieces of information about the participant that you may not have known before. Fin With all that in mind, let’s take a look how to give a reading of the person based on their star sign. I have gone into a lot of detail about this in the “Readings”, for the purpose of demonstration - let me get into the reading of a “Capricorn” (as that is the hypothetical that we used) and explain how I would look at creating a reading around this sign. So first, what is a Capricorn? What does it look like and how are its characteristics formed? It is essentially a goat with a mermaid’s tail (that is what I see when I look at it). What unique qualities does a goat have? Well, a goat can climb up any obstacle no matter how steep and rocky. It is also relaxed unless pressured and backed into a corner. What qualities does a mermaid have? It is mysterious, it is rarely seen and it’s relaxed and placid. It very rarely gets out of the water and is also known to be alluring and intelligent. I also know that a Capricorn is an earth sign. Let’s take these simple qualities, mix them together and base a reading on those qualities. -
“You are the sort of person that has had so many obstacles and curve balls thrown at you in the past that you have adapted to being metaphorically quick on your feet and have learnt how to overcome most of whatever life throws at you. I also feel with you there is a sense of constantly refining and aiming high; you are always aiming to better yourself and are not afraid to be honest with yourself. I feel because of this you bottle things up when portraying your feelings to others, and I bet it can often feel like your emotions can get the better of you at times. You keep people at a distance and very few people get to see the real you; based on negative past experience, it’s almost like there is an air of mystery that surrounds you. I say all of that in a real pleasant sense of course; it’s almost an air of cheekiness. You are a grounded person that is the go-to person when people are forced to make decisions, and I bet at times that can be weighty, carrying everyone else’s problems. I am certain for sure now. There is no other star sign that could represent you other than Capricorn”. As you can see, I just took the description of those two characters (the goat and the mermaid) and turned it into a reading. Not much to it; trust your instincts and build yourself a bank of these readings! This concludes the way that I tend to construct and execute anagrams.
Credits/ inspirations Bob Farmer/ Ray Grismer – Original Anagram Michael Murray – Cups principle Derren Brown – Repeat it principle
Additional Thoughts – Binary - Elliot Watson “I'm getting two opposite feelings from you - warm and cool (NOT hot and cold that is too clear a division) (Depending on the two signs you are down to you will say) Virgo/Scorpio do you feel more of a summer baby or a winter baby? Taurus/Cancer is "closer to spring or more like summer?" Libra is Autumn, Capricorn is Winter Sagittarius and Aquarius are addressed as "You strike me as a definite book-end, someone who is always the first mover, or the last word. Do you feel that you were a beginning of the year baby, or one that saw a year end as you arrived? (Avoids directly asking the question!)”
Additional Thoughts - SIMULTANEOUS MULTIPLICITY – Alain Nu This is Alain Nu’s wonderful take on using the anagram in a different way – I know you will love his thoughts, there is also a couple of other times throughout this volume that Alain Nu adds his invaluable thoughts. Generally if I am working a progressive anagram structure in which I am calling out only letters of the alphabet, I will do it with more than one person at a time. I believe it is always more impressive to perform this effect with two or three people simultaneously. After all, it is possible to do. Simply have each person concentrate on repeating in their minds, the name of their own zodiac sign, and then mention that you had a strong sense of the letter “R”. While getting everyone’s response to this first statement, if one or two people say that there is no “R”, so long as ONE PERSON out of the three says that there is an R in the spelling of his sign, you can count your statement as a “hit.” So then you move on to the next letter of the code, and so on, until you know which of the five “secret words” can be ascribed to each of your three volunteers. From there, you can work with them individually, and know before too long, each of their individual zodiac signs. I have been playing with this since Max Maven wrote Thabbatical dubbed this the “SM Concept,” for Simultaneous Multiplicity. When I find myself in situations where I am performing this for a larger audience, another ruse that I will use is to “take a poll” by asking my audience, “By a show of hands, how many people know what their zodiac sign is? Now by a show of hands, how many of you who know your signs, don’t actually know what your zodiac sign looks like or represents?” By doing this, you will show a fairly high margin of people in your audience who actually do NOT know how to visualize the image of their astrological sign. For these people, continue by saying, “That’s perfectly alright. If you look around, you’ll see you are in good company. Now I’m going to try to work with you anyway. So out of all of you, how many can actually imagine your zodiac spelled out in your mind?” You will now find two or three volunteers from this group to stand in the audience. You have now perfectly justified your reason for having these people concentrate on letters. Also, I generally act as if I am trying to hear “something” that indicates to me what letters to call out, as if I am hearing the sounds that the letters make, but I never make it that clear. I believe that by doing this, I am pulling their attention away from clues that could be found in the spelling, and more into the realm of “intuitively” hearing the sounds of consonants and vowels.
Additional thought “Astrology from A to Z” – Robert Watkins The aforementioned “RAISE” Star Sign Anagram depicted earlier is a wonderful and amazing tool to use in any situation where you have nothing on you. The ability to just walk up to anyone and give them a reading and reveal their Star Sign is everything you need to come across as credible. I agree with Pete when he says the Astrological material is a largely unexplored area that needs more attention. There is only one problem I personally have with the “RAISE” anagram. The problem lies in the fact that you are guessing letters, and the letters that spell someone’s Sign are probably the least personal aspect of a Star Sign divination. So it begs the question: “How can we make the revelation of letters personal?” In other words, I am going to give you my own solution on how to reveal the letters of someone’s Star Sign in a way that links to your participant’s characteristics and traits, which will also help with your Readings as well! I was inspired by cold reading systems such as “Psychometry from A to Z” by Richard Webster when I realized that you could use the letters of the anagram to represent words that would be characteristics of your sitter. I will give you the list of words I use, along with the script for each of the letters (R,A,I,S,E). -
If you can come up with your own words that start with the letters used in the anagram that is fine as well as long as they are descriptive words that you can do a reading with. Once you have your participant thinking of their Sign, have them mix the letters up in their mind. Now I say the following line: “In a moment, I am going to call out words that I feel describe you as a person. These characteristics should give me information I need to determine your Star Sign” Now that they are mixing up the letters, tell them to stop. You will ask them if there is an “R” in their sign. If they say “No”, then you already have it narrowed down to Pisces or Gemini. If they say “Yes” you can now say: “Yes I was picking up on the word Respect because I see that you are a very respectful person. Family and Friendship are very important to you” As you can see, you now have taken the reveal of a letter and turned it into a reveal of the person! This is a good way to start off a reading. Now you will throw out the letter “A”. Once again, if they say “No” then you will move on with the reveal. If they say “Yes”: “The reason I asked is because I see you as a person who will accomplish everything you want in life, if you try” Now that you get the idea, here are the lines I use for the rest of the letters: I- “I see you have an Individualistic nature. You don’t follow the crowd” S“You have a strong sense of Self Confidence most of the time. However, you do have periods of under confidence that you continue to rise above”
E“I was getting the word Enthusiasm from you. You have a project you have been working on that you are very enthusiastic about. Keep at it.” You may only want to use this idea for one or two of the letter reveals, but I personally like using it for all of them because it takes the heat off of the letters and places more focus on the person you are reading, which is what Astrology is all about! Here is an idea on what you can do when they say “No” to one of the letters you throw out. Just for example, let’s imagine they say “No” to the letter “I”: “Yes I didn’t think that was in your Sign because I was getting the word ‘Irritable’ and I don’t see you as a very negative person” Always being sure to turn it into a positive statement, you could play it off as if the letter they said “No” to, was a letter that stood for a negative characteristic. This is just a little idea, food for thought. So there it is! I hope you enjoyed this idea and use it as much as I have. In my opinion this is just a way to turn a Star Sign reveal into what it is supposed to look like. -Watkins
The Bob principle - Hearing stars If you know about this principle you will know how devious it is. If you haven’t had a chance to read about it, variations can be found in ‘The Devil in Disguise’, ‘Bigger Fish 2’ and ‘When in Rome’ (I love this principle). Here I will offer a very simple variants that flies so far under the radar you will not believe you had not thought of it (it’s a head slapper). This leads me to talking about one of my big passions: children’s books. I love reading them, I think in a sense it’s because that’s all I pretty much did in huge parts of my childhood. A lot of my inspiration comes from them in terms of presentation, and this principle is no different it is directly created from reading ‘The Enchanted wood’. Enid Blyton happens to be one of my biggest sources of inspiration, and if you have never read The Faraway Tree books you really must. I am going to re-produce a small section (a few paragraphs) ‘They suddenly came to the wood. It was not far from their cottage, at the back. It looked quite an ordinary wood, except that the trees were a darker green than usual.
A narrow ditch separated the wood from the overgrown lane. “A wood!” said Bessie, in delight. “We shall be able to have picnics here!” “It's rather a mysterious sort of wood,” said Jo thoughtfully, “don't you think so, Bessie?” “Well, the trees are rather thick, but they seem about the same as any others," said Bessie. “They don't quite,” said Fanny. “The noise the leaves make is different. Listen!” They listened—and Fanny was right. The leaves of the trees in the wood did not rustle in quite the same way as other trees nearby did. “It's almost as if they were really talking to one another,” said Bessie. “Whispering secrets—real secrets, that we just can't understand. It's a magic wood!” said Fanny suddenly. Nobody said anything. They stood and listened. “Wisha-wisha-wisha-wisha-wisha!” said the wood, and bent towards one another in a friendly way. The lines that stood out to me were these particular ones: “Whispering secrets—real secrets, that we just can't understand. It's a magic wood!” said Fanny suddenly’. Anyone that has read the “Bob Principle” should be smiling now at just how the simplest things can evoke an entire creation. To go on a small tangent, I think therein lies a lesson there in itself: inspiration should come from everywhere, not just magic/ mentalism books. This is probably going to sound cheesy but I don’t mind: there is a whole host of real magic going on around us that we don’t look for and therefore we never see it. Take a step back and look for it. I promise you the flowers smell amazing. Love, poetry, music, children’s literature, friendship, art and observation are just a few of the things that inspire me. Anyway, back to the principle.
During a star-sign anagram (or any other anagram), one of the things I don’t particularly like is the fact that it is primarily letter-based, but it is the most reliable method and necessity sometimes overtakes artistic output. This got me thinking: wouldn’t it be amazing if somehow I could throw out the letters without throwing out the letters from the audience’s perspective? Then I thought: heck, I have done this before without even realizing I have done it. Because a star-sign divination is my go-to thing and I often have queues of people waiting for me to divine their sign (it really is that powerful), I found that if I had more than one participant wanting their star sign divined, I would have to use a one-ahead or an entirely different divination. The problem is that they are not as consistently hitting for example - “Eye spy” is not as reliable as a traditional anagram. I used to get around this by whispering the letters into the ear of each participant (the participants didn’t know each other). This got me thinking: why have I not whispered the letters when working with one participant and wrapped it up to everyone else as though I was just asking Yes/No questions? What you are about to read is the exact script I use when performing a star-sign anagram (with the Bob variation). For the people who don’t think “dual reality” is a viable method or that it doesn’t have its place in close-up, I hope this makes you realize it can and does. You are going to be performing the aforementioned anagram the only difference is that after you have asked the participant to imagine that the star sign is written in the air and used the cups principle, proclaim: Performer: “There will be some things I will pick up on during the reading that will be personal. As that’s the nature of this, don’t worry, I won’t say these things out loud. “There are going to be things I need you to focus on that I don’t want anyone else focusing on, as it will give me mixed signals and make things difficult. “Imagine passing over each of the letters and firing them at me mentally. I can’t promise I will pick up on these in order as you have never transmitted a piece of information before. “I am going to ask you a few questions; I want a simple yes or no and nothing more. If at any point I ask you to play along or mention any other star sign in your ear, please tell everyone here I have done so.”
Start to give the participant a generic reading and then lean in and perform the anagram quickly as a whisper. This will take no more than 5-10 seconds. When you get your no simply lean out and say: Performer: “To reiterate and so everyone else is aware, you wouldn’t let your friends down in a time of crises and despair?” Participant: “NO!” This is cheeky, “To reiterate” indirectly suggest that you are saying the same thing you just said and when the participant says “No” the audience will assume that is what you asked last – Therefore solidifying their reality and making the audience believe via implication/ indirection that you were asking yes no questions about the persons characteristics. Continue Performer: “I think after asking those simple questions I have in fact established that you think creatively. Can you see your star sign as a picture for me?” This is where you will know the star sign of the two on the branch of the anagram (based on the participant’s reaction to the picture question). This is where you will give a reading for the star sign before you reveal the sign. PLEASE DON’T FORGET TO GIVE THE READING, this puts a delay in terms of time between the process and the reveal. Remember, the reading is the important thing to the participant; the sign is the cherry on the cake. The participant will be just as impressed as though you did the anagram out loud. The audience on the other hand will think you asked a few personal questions (based on the scripting) and then read the person, revealing the sign. This, as you can see, makes the anagram process invisible and takes out the last few kinks, making the process incredibly clean from the audience’s perspective.
Additional Idea A quick simple addition to the whisper is to say things that the participant might not want reciting out loud. For example – Performer: “This bit I am going to whisper privately as I feel it is of a personal nature and I would be uncomfortable repeating this without your permission”. I then lean in and whisper –
Performer: “I feel with you, at times you do so much for your friends some of them here now and often they don’t do the same back and you are wondering when it is time for you. I bet it must be stressful being the go to person in times of a crises and I know you feel the weight of it”. This is where you would move into the anagram and then finish when you get a no as depicted in the performance above. Simply and openly ask the person – Performer: “It’s up to you if you want me to share what I picked up on or keep it to us, not everything is for everyone else”. If the participant does not want to share then the whisper becomes taboo. If they do, simply reiterate what you said in their ear but when you come to the letters utilize ‘Watkin’s Astrology from A-Z’ idea (depicted above) saying “I picked up on the strong sense of the letter R surrounding XX’s life and that represents the word respect meaning XX (for more of an idea see the aforementioned idea). Therefore you have not directly said that the letters belong to the star sign and have blurred perception bringing the two realities back to one and there is no need for the audience to ever question what was whispered as you have just told them. Thus keeping the anagram hidden!
Additional idea Star-Sign Stacking – Mark Chandaue This is one of my favourite uses for my thought-stacking principle. I regularly use Pete’s progressive anagram to get a star sign. However this principle can be applied to any anagram when I also have a known piece of information that applies to the same anagram. So let’s say that I have already managed to secretly get someone’s star sign either through iUnlockYourMind, another effect, Facebook or even simply overhearing it. I now perform the progressive anagram on that person and somebody else, but for the person whose sign I know, I will only call letters that are NOT part of the anagram. For example, let’s say that the sign that I know is Scorpio. The anagram is RAISE so the performance will go like this. (I haven’t included the lead-in script as you will find that elsewhere in this pdf.) You do need to think on the fly to go with the best letters, but it’s pretty straight forward. I start by saying to the person whose sign I don’t know, “See your sign written in the air like PISCES” – this is actually a part of that thinking on your feet I was talking about. Here I would normally use GEMINI. The first branch of the anagram is R; if there is no R, the options are Gemini, Pisces or Leo. I kill Leo by asking if they know how many letters are in their sign – an instant response means Leo – otherwise I normally move on to “see it in the air like Gemini”. If they don’t react now and have no R, they are a Pisces. This is all part of Pete Turner’s approach. The reason I have changed to PISCES in this
instance is because Scorpio, Capricorn and Pisces are the only signs with a P, so here I have an opportunity to kill Pisces before I throw out the P. If I get a hit on Pisces, I turn to the other person and say, “See yours in the air like Scorpio.” This double hit gets a great reaction. Otherwise, I will move on to, “Who’s sending the P?” Now, here I’m guaranteed to get a hit off the Scorpio; if I’m lucky and get a hit off the other person, then I know they are either a Scorpio too, or a Capricorn, I can work out which by saying “Who’s sending me the S?”. If only the Scorpio has the P I have already ruled out Leo, Pisces, Scorpio and Capricorn I can turn to the other participant and say, “There’s an R in yours.” If they say no, I can turn to the Scorpio and say, “The R must be in yours. You are coming through really strong. Let me work with you.” At this point I know that the other person is a Gemini and I haven’t technically had a miss as there was an R. If the person confirms the R, I will move back to letters from Scorpio that are not part of the anagram – my choices are C and O. Here I could go with either C or the O because O is shared by Leo, Virgo, Capricorn and Scorpio, whilst C is shared by Scorpio, Cancer, Pisces and Capricorn. As we have already ruled out Scorpio, Leo, Pisces and Capricorn for the unknown sign, a hit on O has to be Virgo and a hit on C has to be Cancer. However, the next branch of the anagram is A, and a no on A means they are either Scorpio or Virgo. So here I prefer to use the O rather than the C and so I’d say, “Who’s sending the O?” If both, then I know our unknown subject is a Virgo, but if only the Scorpio has the O, then I know 100% that there is an A in the unknown person’s sign. I also know that there is not an A in Scorpio, so I will say, “There’s an A in your sign, but there’s not an A in yours.” This sets me up for the next branch, because my chances of a no are increasing. Here I turn to the unknown person and say, “There’s not an I in your sign, is there?” If he says no, I can turn to the other guy and say, “But there is an I in yours.” Likewise, if he says yes, I can simply say, “And there’s one in yours, too.” If the unknown spectator confirmed that there isn’t an I (still no miss), then he is a Cancer or a Taurus and I can use the C in Scorpio to find out which one by saying, “Who’s sending me the C?” If only the Scorpio is sending a C, the other guy is a Taurus. If there was an I in the unknown guy’s sign, the next branch of the anagram is S, and as I’m guaranteed a hit from the Scorpio I will say, “Who’s sending the S?” Now no S means either Libra or Capricorn and we have already ruled out Capricorn. Assuming our unknown person isn’t a Libra, we are out of letters for Scorpio and only have the E left from the anagram. If they are not an Aries, we can’t avoid a miss now so we need to justify that miss. Here I say, “I think you are starting to struggle here…I’m losing the connection. Is that an E I’m getting?” If yes, then I say, “That’s all the letters, isn’t it? That would make you an Aries and you a Scorpio.” If there is no E then I say, “Ok, just imagine shouting it at me like ‘Aquarius, Aquarius, Aquarius.’” If no reaction, they are a Sagittarius and I’d say to the Scorpio, “You do the same.” If I got a reaction on Aquarius, I will say to the Scorpio, “You do the same, ‘Scorpio, Scorpio, Scorpio.’”
The great thing with this is it allows you to reveal two peoples signs with very little chance of a single miss, in most cases only one or two signs will generate a miss. You could probably even remove this miss altogether by starting out with “See it in the air like Aquarius” now when you get to the E branch of the anagram, don’t bother with the E simply say “Repeat the whole thing over and over again like Sagittarius” if they don’t react they are an Aries, two signs and not a single miss. The great thing is that this isn’t limited to star signs, thought stacking can be applied to any anagram to reduce the chances of a miss and to give you guaranteed hits.
Credits/ Inspirations Michael Murray – Cups
Liar Liar – Additional idea This is the last idea I will offer based around the anagramming process, this one I came up with this morning (before finishing the document) and thought I would add it as it is so simple and something that I have just had as an afterthought. The Liar Truth teller plot is so popular at the moment, I have never seen anyone apply it to an Anagram. This was based on a dream I had about a participant lying about the letters in their star sign. I woke up and it hit me! Why don’t I further hide the anagram by letting the participant have the choice of lying if they so wish and still knowing their sign! This is the concept that I created – Performer: “In a moment I am going to try discover the way that you think. For me to be able to deduce things for me I need to know when your brain is being guarded and when it is not and the way for me to do that is to know when you are lying and when you are telling the truth. I want you to tell me two statements – One statement is going to be real and truthful and the other is going to be a lie BUT both statements must seem plausible. If it is an obvious lie then there I am going to instantly know and it takes all the fun out of what is about to occur”. The participant makes the two statements (It really doesn’t matter what they say OR how they say it as this is not integral to the method it is simply for presentational purpose. Performer: “In a moment we are going to play a game that I call seven question – This is a lot like the game 20 questions but is a lot harder because I have a lot less questions and you are either going to be lying or telling the truth. If you lied during the input process of the game 20 questions there is no way that the computer could ever find out what it is you are thinking of. Before we begin the game if you look at the star sign Pisces, it is representative of someone who is relax natured and lets the natural current of life guide them with little
resistance. Whereas if you look at a Gemini they are intuitive and struggle to follow any natural course because they are constantly battling between their head and their heart. Obviously, if you are one of those signs I would like you to focus on someone else’s star sign for me as I have mentioned those”. (I am watching for the participant’s eyes to move off to see if coincidentally happens to be one of their signs as I can get a double revelation later). Performer: “Think of the exact amount of letters in the star sign”. (Watch the participant carefully if they answer quickly then you need to test for Leo – See the sign in the air largely like... Leo, you can see it right?” If they take some time stop them short Saying “Don’t worry about it just see it in the air”. You have achieved something amazing here – You now know that the star sign must contain the letter R as you have killed all of the ones that do not. This point is very important to remember. Performer: “So let’s play the game the rules are simple I am going to ask you seven or less questions and try to guess your sign. The there is only one rule, you are going to play the role of either a hero or a villain BUT I mustn’t know which. Heroes are synonymously known for telling the truth no matter what whereas villains are notorious known to by liars even to their closest associates. If you choose to play the role of a liar you must always lie to whatever question I ask you and if you choose to be a hero you must always tell the truth. You can’t change characters halfway through. I will never ask you a question that will instantly dictate which character you are playing if for example I asked you, are you female? I know the answer to that question and therefore it would tip what character you have decided to play. Take a few seconds before answering each time to think about your answers and then answer, this ensures you are completely straight faced and composed… Let’s Begin”. I will outline a demonstration for TAURUS as first a liar and then a truth teller and you will see instantly how this works.
Truth teller Performer: “There are two chairs at a table in a busy room, one table is facing everyone else in the room the other is facing out of a window. Which chair would you sit in?” Participant: “The one looking out of the window” Performer: “Some of these questions might seem irrelevant, all they are doing is testing both your aesthetical and analytical qualities helping me understand you. There is an R in your star sign correct?” Participant: “Yes”. THE MOMENT THEY SAY YES TO THUS QUESTION YOU KNOW THAT THEY ARE TELLING THE TRUTH! The reason being that all the signs that do not have an R in have been killed! You just run through the anagram as normally.
Performer: “An A?” Participant: “Yes”. Performer: “There is a blue door and a red door both lead to an uncertain destination, if you had to make a choice which door would you go through?” Participant: “Yes” Performer: “There is an ‘I’ in there too?” Participant: “No” Performer: “Do you have pictures hanging in your bedroom at home or are they in stand up frames or neither?” Participant: “Stand up frames”. Performer: “Ok, I don’t know if your answers were truthful or deceitful so you could have been lying to me all the way through this or telling the truth I am ready I feel to begin to read you and then take a guess at your sign”. This is where you move into the reading and utilize the double out (depicted in the reduction processes section of this volume). The rest of the questions are irrelevant and are simply placed there to pad out the performance and hide the anagram some more. You are simply following the aforementioned RAISE anagram the other questions are simply thrown in to muddy the anagram so we will ignore those as irrelevant. Whatever answer (yes or no) you get to the question about the letter R will dictate whether they are lying or telling the truth. In short if you have yes you know that they are telling the truth if you have NO they are lying. If they are lying you know they are lying and when they say yes just imagine that they have said no and when they say no just imagine that they are saying yes. The only rule you need to adhere to perform this is this – you need to kill the first branch of the anagram – this is simple. Let’s look at this on the flip side from the perspective of a liar.
Liar Performer: “There are two chairs at a table in a busy room, one table is facing everyone else in the room the other is facing out of a window. Which chair would you sit in?” Participant: “The one looking at the crowd” Performer: “Some of these questions might seem irrelevant, all they are doing is testing both your aesthetical and analytical qualities helping me understand you. There is an R in your star sign correct?” Participant: “No”. YOU NOW KNOW THAT THEY ARE LYING. From this point I simply pretend yes means no and no means yes.
Performer: “An A?” Participant: “No”. Performer: “There is a blue door and a red door both lead to an uncertain destination, if you had to make a choice which door would you go through?” Participant: “No” Performer: “There is an ‘I’ in there too?” Participant: “Yes” Performer: “Do you have pictures hanging in your bedroom at home or are they in stand up frames or neither?” Participant: “On the walls”. Then you use a reductive process to get to one of the two signs. Let’s compare the two (liar truth teller side by side) Truth teller
Letter R -
Letter A -
Letter I -
If I am getting YES’ consecutively and then a NO, I treat this just like the regular anagram process. If I am getting NO’s consecutively I Know the person is lying and the moment they say YES I know that really they mean NO (because I know that they are a liar) and I look at what branch I am on in the anagram as normal. I hope this was understandable it was really, really difficult for me to describe this in words - in practice or performance it is so simple and is a really interesting concept that hides the anagram in plain sight.
Additional Idea – Colin McLeod One thing I really like about this routine is that it isn’t just revealing the star sign, you are seemingly knowing if the person is lying or telling the truth and at the same time finding things out about their character based on their answers. I was playing with this routine and the only part of the routine that didn’t really fit my performing style (for this type of routine) was eliminating the first branch in the anagram. The solution is simple – I took a letter that doesn’t occur in any star sign, the letter ‘D’ and by simply asking if the letter D is in their sign if they tell me it is I instantly know that they are lying because that letter doesn’t occur in any star sign and if they answer no they must be telling the truth that way I don’t need to eliminate the first branch. I then run through the anagram as normal and I can reveal the star sign at will.
I think we have exhausted all that should be said on the progressive anagram in this volume – Let’s take a look at some other divinations…
Credits/ Inspirations U.F Grant – Tell the truth telephone
A simple divination - Cheers! This divination is one I created as an addition to a divination created by Andreu the mentalist – An effect I cannot for the life in me remember the name of. My rendition is a simple one that requires a little pre-show NOT IN THE CONVENTIONAL SENSE and not necessary once you practice this a couple of times (as you will see If you read to the end). In-fact it should be called pre-prep as opposed to pre-show. If you are ever in an opportunity in which you have access to a table before a performance take the beer mats off of the table and mark them as thus You will notice where I make the markings upon the mat by looking at the diagram above
- an E on one edge, an A on the second, W upon the third and finally a F. Place the mats so the markings are face down on the table and you are ready to begin. Wait until it is time to perform when you address that table and the conversation comes around to astrology (You steered it there). You ask for one of the beer mats, explain to the group that each sign falls under a particular element and that is solely what dictates their characteristics and traits. (Say this as you write down on the face of the beer mat (the opposite side to the markings) Fire = Aries, Sagittarius and Leo
*** Note to reader, Ensure what you are writing matches the correct marking on the opposite side of the mat. In this case for clarity there would be an F on the reverse side. Rotate the beer mat and write – Water = Pisces, Cancer and Scorpio (Again ensuring it matches the marking on the reverse side of the beer mat) Rotate the beer mat again and write – Air = Gemini, Libra and Aquarius And finally rotate the mat one last time and write – Earth = Capricorn, Taurus and Virgo Once you have perfected marking the mat and writing the elements in a certain order this will run so smoothly that it will be over in a matter of seconds. Address the person that you are proposing to guess the star sign of. Performer: “When I turn my back I want you to pick the mat up like this (See picture) and rotate it so that your sign is at the top and completely readable as in a moment you are going to be telling the group exactly which sign you are". Turn away from the participant, Performer: "Do that as I'm looking away, I want you when it is at the top to touch your sign so that everyone at the table knows your sign other than me and then take your finger away and await my next instruction". *** Note to reader, this is a very carefully structured paragraph, it ensures that after the participant has touched their sign they keep the mat held toward themselves and don't do anything – The last thing that we want is them rotating the mat once more Performer: "Have you taken your finger of?" The moment you get a response turn around for a second and say Performer: "Place the mat away, get it off of the table as I don't want to be distracted by it". ***Note to reader - This is said politely not dismissively, all tone is missing from writing. You turn back away, while they hide it. The turnaround should be so brief you want to make the look around nonchalant just to glance the marking. You now know the element sign and are instantly down to three star signs with no work whatsoever as the participant has done everything for you. You then utilize one of the principles described in the reduction processes section of this volume to instantly hone in on the exact sign. With practice you can completely eliminate the markings and work with the natural design of the beer mat, that then eliminates the preparation and you can roll into this at a seconds notice in the flow of performance.
As you can see this is simple but effective. Another variant to deduce a star sign that is as simple (but I find more elegant) as this can located in the ‘Readings’ volume in this series – the effect is called ‘Getting TWO know you’.
Truly invisibly visible The performer asks the participant to imagine holding a deck of imaginary zodiac cards. He asks the participant to imagine dealing cards out and then to pick out their astrological sign. The participant never says a word, the cards do not exist in a physical form and yet the performer is instantly able to know the participant’s sign.
Breakdown The method for this is not my own, it first appeared in Wonder words 2, then was re constructed and utilized by Derren Brown in his Devil’s Picture book. He renamed the routine ‘The invisible deal’. I first saw this in Kenton’s work and have gained Kenton’s permission some time ago to utilize this principle in my own work and until now I never really had anything to use it for. I purely came up with this for this project – I was VERY comfortable with it in its original form (using playing cards) and I am merely going to convert the verbal’s I use to match zodiac cards. I want to be very honest in stating this is something I have only performed a few times (as it is new) each time it worked as beautifully as it did when I used playing cards any refinements that you come up with this routine I would love to hear. I personally feel variation #2 of this (outlined later) is much nicer in performance, yet much harder to execute in performance. I would recommend learning this variation and then moving onto that variant. I am going to outline a full performance and then break the full performance down piece by piece to run you through the subtleties in each section.
Full performance Performer: “One thing that I used to utilize when giving readings were zodiac cards, I’m not sure if you have ever seen them or heard of them?” Participant: “I have heard of them”. Performer: “Perfect. Sometimes it is better for me to utilize an oracle much like a psychic might use runes or tarot cards to give a reading. I feel this will be one of those circumstances. The only difference is that the oracle won’t exist in a physical form. I will explain as we go along how we are going to utilize this oracle. For now I want you to imagine you are holding a stack of zodiac cards. For me to give you an accurate reading
I need you in your mind’s eye to physically imagine that the stack of cards exist all the way through this and never doubt that they are actually there”. Participant: “Okay”. Performer: “Right now the cards are mixed up, I want you to separate the cards into two separate and distinct piles, a pile for cards you feel give you a warm feeling and a pile for the cards you feel give you a cold feeling I want you to physically do this as though the cards are genuinely there and then we are ready to begin. So, deal them into a warm pile and a cold pile for me now”. The participant deals the cards into two piles. Performer: “You physically know which pile represents cold cards and hot ones right?” Participant: “Yes”. Performer: “The warm cards represent spring and summer and the cold cards represent autumn and winter, I want you to think of which pile of cards contain the season you were born and pick that pile up”. The participant picks an imaginary pile of cards off of the table. The performer removes the imaginary cards that were left upon the table. Performer: “Only you can see which pile you picked up, there is no way that I could as you are the only person that can see them this is your reality not mine. I don’t know if you are holding spring and summer or autumn and winter. It doesn’t matter to me as long as you can imagine physically seeing them. I want you now to deal them out again into two piles, spring and summer or autumn and winter depending on which pile you are holding”. The participant deals down the cards into two piles. Performer: “From the two piles, pick up your season”. The participant picks up one of the piles, the performer again removes the imaginary cards that are left on the table. Performer: “Again there is no way I could know what season you are holding, as only you can see the cards. Each season has three star signs that fall within it, I only want you to listen to the season that you were born in and please don’t give me a clue by seeming disinterested in the rest but remember the star signs that are in your season. Those are the three cards that you have in your hand. Spring contains Pisces, Aries and Taurus. Summer contains Gemini, Cancer and Leo. Autumn contains Virgo, Libra and Scorpio and winter contains Sagittarius, Capricorn and Aquarius. I want you to place these three cards in the air between us”.
The participant deals the three cards into the air. Performer: “Reach forward and take the sign that belongs to you”. The participant reaches forwards and takes the card that is relevant to them. The performer wipes away the other invisible cards and begins to read the participant to an accurate degree and finishes by correctly divining the participant’s exact zodiac sign!
Breakdown This routine sounds long in written form but plays out in a very short time in performance, it is only ever going to be as long as an equivoque routine which I am sure you know is fairly short and each process engaging to watch. I have in a second variant done a stream lined variation which requires memory work but is over in a matter of seconds. This routine really is ultra-simple, many of you might already have clocked the method – if not this honestly is a thing of beauty. I will outline it piece by piece – There is two rules to successfully being able to pull of this routine. The first is that you need a participant who can follow instructions and the second is that you need to ensure the participant knows the exact season he/ she was born within. And you are ready to start. Performer: “One thing that I used to utilize when giving readings were zodiac cards, I’m not sure if you have ever seen them or heard of them?” Participant: “I have heard of them”. This first section there is a subtlety that I have discovered that is so, so beautiful I utilize it whenever I get a chance. Usually when you are in a situation wherein someone reads cards or there is a friend at the table that has dabbled in this sort of stuff fin that, that particular person can be your ticket to instantly credibility. I once met a party of people I was performing ‘Isabella’s Star’ to and there was a person who gave readings and had given numerological readings and I simply and boldly said, ah so you will know of astrological numbers - for the rest of the group who don’t know I will explain how to generate one. After the group had generated the numbers I simply said, this is genuinely how these type of astrological readings would start with an astrological number as I am sure XX will agree. That person doesn’t want to seem to not know and so completely agrees and that is someone that they came with! What better way to gain instant credibility. Astrological numbers are BS I invented them but they instantly became a real thing the moment that their friend verifies it. Look at how I framed the conversation, it is so important. I never asked that person (the one who knows) to explain what they were I said “For those who don’t know” and then proceeded to tell the group - indirectly telling that person!
It can be the same in this scenario, when it comes to giving the reading by simply saying to the person that ‘Knows’ if I had a physical stack the process with a real stack would be the exact same. When you get the confirmation the process seems natural. The participant saying they have heard of the cards is great as they essentially are what you believe them to be and if they don’t it really doesn’t make a difference as you are about to share with them the meaning of the cards. Performer: “Ah, perfect well they are very simple to use I will explain as we go along. I want you to imagine you are holding a stack of zodiac cards. For me to give you an accurate reading I need you in your mind’s eye to physically see the stack of cards all the way through this you need to physically imagine that the cards exist”. Participant: “Okay”. The point that is important to remember here is that you need them to physically imagine that they are holding cards. To act as though they were holding real cards as this plays a big part in the method. Another thing is I refer to the cards as a STACK of zodiac cards not a deck, I want to push the participant’s thoughts as far away from playing cards as possible. The main point though is to get them to physically imagine seeing the cards. We have made a point of saying that if they do not we cannot give them an accurate reading – Any person who really wants a reading at this point will make sure they do everything in their power to ensure that they follow what you are asking to the letter. Performer: “Right now the cards are mixed up, I want you to separate the cards into two separate and distinct piles, a pile for cards you feel give you a warm feeling and the cards you feel give you a cold feeling I want you to physically do this as though the cards are genuinely there. Deal them into a warm pile and a cold pile for me now”. The participant deals the cards into two piles. WATCH THE PARTICIPANT CLOSELY – Whichever pile they deal down first is the WARM pile. They are following your instructions at this point they don’t know what they are supposed to be doing and therefore will clutch onto what you are asking them to do. In a moment we are going to dispel any idea that we could know what they are seeing. Performer: “You physically know which pile represents cold cards and hot ones right?” Participant: “Yes”. Performer: “The warm cards represent spring and summer and the cold cards represent autumn and winter, I want you to think of which pile of cards contain the season you were born and pick that pile up”. The participant picks an imaginary pile of cards off of the table. The performer removes the imaginary cards that were left upon the table.
Performer: “Only you can see which pile you picked up, there is no way that I could as you are the only person that can see them. I don’t know if you are holding spring and summer or autumn and winter. It doesn’t matter as long as you can see them. Of course we know what pile the participant picked up, but by claiming that we can’t see the cards there is no way we could know the cards that they are holding it seems logical. It fits into the participant’s reality and therefore to them they are the only ones physically seeing what cards they are holding. I want you now to deal them out again into two piles, spring and summer or autumn and winter depending on which pile you are holding”. Again, by mentioning all the seasons it seems like you really don’t know which cards the participant are holding when in reality we do. Watch where the participant deals the first pile. If they picked up warm the first pile dealt will be spring, the second summer and if it was cold they picked up a moment ago then they will deal them autumn and winter. The participant deals down the cards into two piles. Performer: “From the two piles, pick up cards which represent the season you were born”. The participant picks up one of the piles, the performer again removes the imaginary cards that are left on the table. Simply watch the pile that is picked up. Performer: “Again there is no way I could know what season you are holding, as only you can see the cards. Each season has three star signs that fall within it, I only want you to listen to the season that you were born in and please don’t give me a clue by seeming disinterested in the rest but remember the signs in your season. Those are the three cards that you have in your hand. Spring contains Pisces, Aries and Taurus. Summer contains Gemini, Cancer and Leo. Autumn contains Virgo, Libra and Scorpio and winter contains Sagittarius, Capricorn and Aquarius. I want you to place these three cards in the air between us”. The participant deals the three cards into the air. Performer: “Reach forward and take the sign that belongs to you”. This again I think by now you get the idea as it is simple, you have named the season and the signs that have fallen into that season and then asked them to lay them out in the air– Keep track of where they deal first, then second and then third. When they are asked to reach out and take the card that is relevant to them and their sign just simply watch and you instantly know the star sign! Just again to press a point, you have named the rest of the seasons out and signs too to throw the participant off the fact you know what cards they are holding.
The participant reaches forwards and takes the card that is relevant to them. The performer wipes away the other invisible cards and begins to read the participant to such an accurate degree and finishes by correctly divining the participant’s exact zodiac sign! The reading is the important thing, you have to place a time delay between the process and revealing the sign.
Truly invisibly visible #2 IF you are in a hurry and need to perform something that is quick and simple, this variation is a streamlined version of above. The performer has the participant envision that they are holding a stack of zodiac cards. They are holding a stack of cards that contain the four seasons and are asked to deal the cards out into the four seasons spring, summer, autumn and winter but in any order they desire. They are then told the relevant signs that belong to each season and asked to imagine dealing the cards into the air and then reaching forward and taking their sign out of the air. There is no way that the performer could know which order the participant placed the seasons in and therefore when they picked up their season, there is now way the performer could know which season was picked up an therefore there is no way he could know which signs were dealt into the air or what order they were placed in. The performer correctly divines the sign.
Breakdown This has its ups and downs – The up is that it really doesn’t matter which order the participant places the season in. As that is not where we are going to apply the method, the method is going to be when we tell the participant what signs fall into what seasons and to lay those cards out in the air. THIS is where the method is applied, the participant is going to struggle remembering the three signs and will therefore lay them out in the order you mentioned them. That is a given. When you ask them to reach for their sign, if they reach for the first card you know it is the first sign in spring, summer, autumn or winter. If they take the second sign, you know it is going to be the second sign in spring, summer, autumn or winter. The third would be the third in spring, summer, autumn or winter. The first card would be – Pisces, Gemini, Virgo and Sagittarius. The second would be – Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn
The third would be – Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius There is an easy way to remember these if you find this is a lot of information. First, learn the order the star signs fall in all year around (using the mnemonic mentioned later). All you have to do is remember the signs for the first card (Pisces, Gemini, Virgo and Sagittarius). The second card is only going to be one sign up in the order, an example would be – Pisces would be Aries, Gemini would be Caner – So on and so forth. Once you have committed this to memory, it is simple and straight forward. There is a section covered later in this document called ‘reduction processes’ that will explain in detail how to reduce the four signs to one.
Credits/ Inspirations Kenton Knepper – Truly Invisible Derren Brown – Invisible Deal Annemann – Invisible deck
Double star sign revelation NOTE TO READER*** The first variation of this effect utilizes the aforementioned anagram – IT IS NOT NESSECARY, it is however necessary you read the first variation to understand the second variation that does NOT require an anagram of any kind. I personally prefer variation 2, but I have outlined variation 1 as it takes an in-depth look at the original variation of the effect and outlines the necessary subtleties to perform the effect.
Effect A participant is asked to divine your star sign and, at the exact same time you divine theirs, to prove that you really do share a connection.
Breakdown I am sure anyone who has followed my work knows I am a big believer in flipping things on their head and doing it backwards. So let me, if I may, first go off on a tangent and then come back to the effect at hand.
Be controversial – Think backwards This is a tiny essay and a routine (minus the method) at the same time. Before you skip over this because the routine has no method, the reason it doesn’t have a method is not because I am choosing not to share it. It is genuinely because I don’t have a method. You will realize that the interesting thing about thinking backwards is that your thinking will be fresh and you will start to view things in a fresh light. You will notice that when you start to do things the opposite way around, all of a sudden you will realize why most of the things you have been taught or read are difficult to add good presentations to. I will give you an example. Let’s take a look at a simple spoon bend, which is something I don’t do, but don’t skip this as it will give you a look into my thought process. Let’s look at a spoon bend in its traditional sense. When you use your powers to bend a spoon, you end up leaving the spoon in a disheveled state. When you break this down into its simplest form, you are using your powers for destruction. So thinking about it, what purpose does a traditional spoon bend serve other than to give an example of your mental agility? Ok, that might be all you want to do, but in my opinion it lacks premise. Let’s look at a traditional spoon bend and flip it on its head to exemplify my point of how many windows open up when it comes to finding premise.
Effect The performer produces a spoon and addresses his participant. Performer: “Every single one of us, no matter how individualistic we believe we are, shares one invisible commonality. “That commonality is that each one of us has one problem or stress that is occurring in our lives that we push so far into the back of our minds we pretend it is nonexistent.
“These problems can often be summed up in one word. For example, if this was about overworking and not having time to oneself, the word might be ‘stress’ or ‘time.’ “I know right now what I am about to ask you is going to make no sense, but in a moment it will make all the sense in the world. “Can you bend this spoon for me?” The participant bends the spoon. While bending the spoon the audience can see how difficult it is to bend the spoon physically. Performer: “Take a few seconds to really think about a stress that is going on in your life no matter how small. I want you to feel in your heart what word would sum up the stress you are going through right now. “The reason I am asking you to think about summing up this stress in one word is to protect your privacy. If you said the one word out loud, not one person watching here would have a clue what your personal problem is.” Participant: “Time.” Performer: “I want you to write the word ‘time’ into the bowl of the spoon for me.” Let them do this, take the spoon back from the participant and hold her hand. Performer: “I want you first to focus on the problem in your mind for me. Don’t worry, I will not divine the problem and share it publicly. “Imagine how that problem is making you feel at this moment. I want you now to think about a few ways this problem could be solved. “Imagine what it would feel like if you solved this problem. “I am sure you have heard the expression: ‘A problem shared is a problem halved.’ I know you have seen me reading people all evening, and without you knowing I am feeling your problems right now. “The spoon is here to be merely used as a metaphor. I know you NOW have several ways in mind that you are going to tackle this problem, and that is often the first thing needed to straighten out these problems.” The spoon starts to straighten itself a little bit. Performer: “Taking action is the second thing needed in order to fully solve the problem.”
The spoon starts to straighten itself and after a few seconds is back in perfect form. Performer: “I know you now know what you need to do in order to solve the problem. I would like to leave you with this spoon.” Bend the spoon again and hand it to the participant. Performer: “I want you to take this, and every time you think you have made a little headway at solving the problem, straighten the spoon just a little bit. This will always serve as a reminder that you are making progress. “When it is completely straight I want you to place it somewhere you can see it at all times, as this will serve as a beautiful souvenir to remind you how easy it is to straighten out your problems when we take action.” End routine. Think about this: when they take the spoon and they straighten it a little amount each time, they make some headway and they get a visual representation of the problem being solved. When the spoon is completely straightened after the problem is solved, as it is the last action they make, they will always credit you for helping to solve the problem. Not only that, I asked them to place the spoon somewhere that they can see at all times. This means that anyone that visits the person’s property will see the spoon; it creates a natural talking point and thus your legend grows, and you have become a part of someone’s history. I did state earlier that I do not have a method for straightening the spoon. I am sure it is not impossible, but it is something I have not looked into. What I want to represent is how to not only make a prop seem relevant, but also to show how, when flipping a spoon bend on its head, you are not only using your powers for good, but you also open up so many angles for presentation. Let’s ask the same question we did when we started, but when thinking in this frame of mind. What purpose does straightening a spoon serve? I bet you now have several answers to this question. Think about the way you perform your effects and try to think about them backwards; see how many presentational angles you can open.
Here is a video that caught my attention that I think should hammer my point home. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RO1e9BwBys Back to the effect – Double star sign variation That is exactly what I do here: flip the anagram on its head. In doing this it not only resolves some of the issues I had with anagrams, but it also really takes into account working smart, not hard. Let me first outline what methods/principles we will be using in this effect. A reverse anagram Springboard The reverse anagram I feel is beautiful and it certainly gives justification for throwing out the letters, as you will see. I am not going to go over the entire anagram again, as it is outlined earlier, however I will show you where the necessary script changes take place. Before we talk about the anagram you need to write up a billet with the star signs on it in a particular order. I don’t need to see this piece of card during performance as I know the order of the star signs. If you wanted to work on remembering the order of the star signs, there is a neat little poem by Steven Young in Isabella’s Star 2. I recommend you check out. If you can’t remember them, don’t worry, it won’t stop you from being able to perform this effect. Just ask the participant to put the card face up on the table and perform the effect where you can both see the card. You are ready to begin the effect. Performer: “Would you be comfortable knowing all of the star signs and the order in which they fall?” This is a very clever double question. A lot of people will know all of the star signs, but the order they fall in is something that most people don’t need to learn, and therefore 99% of the time this question will prompt the participant to say No. When they say No, this gives you a logical reason to produce the card with the list on it. I find it is nice if they can introduce your prop for you—not that a piece
of card with writing on it is really a prop (I certainly wouldn’t classify it as one). This leads me to another point about pre-written pieces of information on cards: I personally don’t have one pre-written (for the purpose of this effect I am assuming that the reader hasn’t needed to learn the order of the star signs in the past and therefore writing them on the spot is something that is not practical). Learn them. I find pre-written cards and printed predictions as impersonal or not unique. What do I mean by that? Remember, this is my opinion, but I want my participant to believe that what I am showing them and the moment I have created I have only created for them. I want them to feel this is a special occasion for them and unique. If I have the card already written or printed, it suggests that I do this all the time and almost takes the shine off of what it is I am doing, as it has a prepared feel to it. I like to write it in front of them as it almost seems off-the-cuff when written for them. Sorry, quick tangent there. Back to the effect. Performer: “That’s not a problem. I have a list of the star signs and the order in which they fall. It is important you know all of the star signs as you are going to deduce my star sign, and if there are a few missing, then it makes it impossible for you. “Looking at the star signs, you will quickly see Aquarius falls in the first month, Pisces the second, Aries the third and so on and so forth. I do know that each month has two star signs because of the cusp dates, but don’t worry about that as it will confuse things.” Look at the script here. You have practically pointed out that the order of the signs is easy if they count along. You have also told them to dismiss the fact there are two star signs to a month. The beautiful thing here is that they are going to guess your star sign, and because of this when you set a restriction (in this routine it is telling them to forget that there are two star signs in one month) it is FOR THEM. Think about that for a few seconds. If they are guessing, whenever you tighten the net, it is to help them out. This really presses my point earlier about how things often work better backwards. Performer: “I want you to take into account what you believe my star sign is based on the feelings you are getting from me. I feel with you, you focus in terms of
words and pictures, so I am going to ask you some random questions and you have to use your intuition and just answer honestly, following your heart. “This is the thing: if you were to just guess you would be wrong. You have to take into account my characteristics. If you were to look at a Leo for example, which I am not, you would realize their characteristics would be confident, headstrong and very up front. There is a lot more, but they should serve as an example as to what you are looking for. “When you believe you have it, just imagine my star sign written in the air and tell me when you can imagine it being there.” Participant: “I can.” Performer: “You obviously know your own sign. If you were to look at the star signs, do you believe you were born before or after me and how much before or after?” The participant will look on the list at the star sign they believe you to be and then find theirs and count the number of month’s difference for you. Of course, at this point we don’t know what star sign they believe you to be, so remember the participant’s answer. Performer: “I am going to ask you if you feel there are specific letters in my star sign. Again, answer based on feeling; remember this is about following your initial intuition. “Your decisions have to be your own and I don’t want people thinking I am making it easier for you, so I am going to be asking you in a random order and at a quicker pace than the questions I have asked you so far.” “Are you ready?” You can see by looking here that I have made the excuse for asking them about the letters in a random order. The change of pace is so that this process is over very quickly and doesn’t give any spectators the chance to process what is going on. I also stated something very important about trusting their instincts. This will ensure that they don’t change their mind. Begin to throw out the letters from the anagram and let them decide whether it is in there or not. Essentially what you are doing is the same anagram, but instead of saying, “I am feeling there is an R in the sign, correct?” you are changing the question to: “Do you believe there is an R in the sign?” “How about an A?”
Again, they are answering instinctively, and in doing so they will lead you to what star sign they believe you to be. It doesn’t matter what star sign they agree with whatever choice they make Aries, as all the letters are exhausted This works amazingly for every other
pick for you; you are essentially going to for you. I have found the worst case to be (see the anagram for a better understanding). star sign.
When you know what star sign the participant believes you to be (remember, they don’t know that you know), but you also know their star sign as well for free. Let’s take a look at an example. Let’s say they have said they were born two months before (when you asked the question earlier), and they have believed you to be a “Capricorn.” All you have to do is count back by two star signs (which would be a “Scorpio”) to know all you need to know. See picture. This is where you have two choices. You can remove another billet and write: My star sign = (WHATEVER THEY BELIEVE IT TO BE) Your star sign = (WHATEVER THEY HAVE LED YOU TO) This is where you would openly ask what star sign the participant is and what they believe your star sign to be. When the participant answers, you flip over the card and the routine ends here. OR You can hand the participant a billet. You also have a billet and you ask them to write down what their star sign is and what they believe your star sign to be underneath. You will write down their star sign and your star sign underneath. This means that when both of the billets are flipped over, there is a match and you finish on a very high note that validates the fact you have a connection.
Additional idea You could use the Increment Force (detailed earlier) to get them to think Stop on a particular number, and when you hand them the list, have each star sign with a number before it. This would force the 5th, 6th or 7th star sign (Gemini, Cancer or Leo). You could also use Michael Murray’s “CUPS Principle.” Ask the participant to think of the number of letters in your sign.
If they say yes instantly, you know it is Leo as there are only three letters. If they take slightly longer it could be Cancer or Gemini. Look for the indifferent letter, which would be the letter M. If they say there is an “M” in there you will know it is Gemini and not Cancer. As you can see with this approach, there is very little questioning to be done and it shortens the process massively. Play with this; it’s bold and it’s fun. If it misses? Well, it was them guessing so it’s the participant’s fault if it’s wrong!
Variation #2 This variation I feel is better than the original, it is however a little harder to pull off convincingly but I promise this is so simple it flies by and is I feel a great justification for bringing an anagram into performance. Performer: “To really get in tune with someone and pick up on their characteristics and traits takes totally trusting your own feelings and intuition. What I have found is that more often than not our head and our heart are constantly battling as they have conflicting interests. I am going to write down my star sign, I want to prove that by just guessing you are not going to pick up on this”. The performer whilst saying this writes down his sign and then places the thing he has written upon face down on the table. Do you know all of the star signs and the order that they fall in?” Participant: “No”. The performer hands the participant a list of star signs – ****In this variation the star signs have numbers next to them, 1 = Aquarius, 2 = Pisces and so on and so forth. Performer: “It is essential that you have all of the star signs in your mind in-case just in-case my star sign happened to be one of the ones that you did not know. Right now, you have now clue what my star sign is correct?” Participant: “No I don’t have a clue”. Performer: “Start to look at the star signs on the piece of card I have given you, it is not essential to know the order of the star signs off by heart. I am sure you know Aquarius falls in the first month of the year or what month your star falls in roughly”.
**There is a subtle dual reality here, the audience are led to believe that the participant is just looking at a list of star signs there is a little more on the card. Star signs
Month the sign occurs in
When I point to the star signs I point my finger around the card like they are dotted about at random, the rest of the audience only see the back of the card and therefore are led to believe that the star signs are dotted about. When I make the point about not having to know the months off by heart this is where I point to the months on the card and by finishing on the line roughly because sometimes some star signs fall over two months the “roughly” in the script is also a subtle dual reality. To the audience it suggests that the participant should roughly know what month their star sign falls upon. To the participant they might look at the list and their sign might fall into the next month and therefore it is roughly in the right ball park pointing out it is only meant to be roughly close anyway then sits with them logically as meaning excuse this little detail. This is where the method gets really sneaky. ***
Performer: “I want you to look at me and get a feel for what star sign you believe me to be, I want you to look at the star signs find yours. Do you believe I was born before or after you and by how many months?” The participant will look at the list and tell you, remember what they say it is going to be important. Performer: “I want you to think of the star sign you feel I am and then think of a letter from within there when I ask you to fire out a letter, fire out whatever letter you are thinking of”. ****Note to reader**** This is important, if the participant throws out a letter that only occurs in that one star sign have them throw no more letters out and stop them there. For example – M only appears in Gemini P only appears in Scorpio Q only appears in Aquarius V only appears in Virgo B only appears in Libra There is a good chance that they will call out one of these letters instantly tipping what the star sign they feel you are (if you want for good measure you can allow them to call out one more). When they call out the letter look at them if they are wrong say – Performer: “In fact, pick up the piece of card off of the table and tell me if you believed this was my sign”. It won’t be – quickly counter with, Performer: “This was to simply prove that you can’t just guess, if you don’t mind I would like to try this with you”. Point to a second participant Anagram and then nail the star sign (you have created a logical context in which you will throw out letters now) If you know the anagram inside out within a couple of letters you should know what sign the participant thinks you are, this is the key they have told you that
they felt that they were born three months before you. You know what sign they are thinking of and therefore all you have to do is count back three months from the sign that they think you are (simply glancing at the list as you put it away) and you know that participant’s sign. Remember you never asked them to tell you what star sign they thought you were so they have no clue that you know and the line about being born before totally flies by. If however the participant calls out the exact letters from your star sign let them call out loud what sign they believe you to be and take the hit finishing with this sentence. Performer: “You genuinely felt that, I was sending it to you in the hopes that you would pick up on it you did amazingly!” If you can’t for whatever reason pick up on the sign that the participant believes you to be, simply say – “What sign did you believe me to be?” They will tell you and then let them see the card to see that they were wrong and move into the anagram with a second participant. This is the lesser of the stronger approaches, with a time delay the participant will completely forget that they have answered the question you asked about the months. You can further disguise the question by putting inside a series of other questions. For example, what do you feel my favorite color is? Do you feel I am outgoing or fairly introvert? Do you were born before or after me and by how many months?
Credits/ Inspirations Ray Eric – Flash Michael Murray – Springboard
Eye to Eye Star-Sign Revelation I always said to myself that I would never release this. It was something that I used over Skype for such a long time to guess people’s star signs. On paper this might read like something that seems too good to be true. It really is too good, but I use it a hell of a lot and the results are seriously amazing!
This is perfect for the pad-less variation of Isabella’s two. Here it is. I am a little sad to let this go so I really hope you love it as much as I do. This is something that can be used as soon as you have the participant’s astrological number. You do not need to follow the procedure of odd or even dates, and as soon as you know the star sign, you instantly know the date the person was born. Address the participant: Performer: “Each of the elements has certain characteristics, just in case you don’t know which signs fall under which element. Capricorn, Taurus, Virgo are Earth elements; Pisces, Cancer and Scorpio are Water elements; Aries, Leo and Sagittarius are Fire elements; and Aquarius, Gemini and Libra are Air elements. For example, Water would be calming, Fire would be instinctive, Air would be intuitive and Earth would be very decisive. Only your element is relevant to you.” “If you are a Water sign, I want you now (emphasize ‘now’ slightly) to think of a situation where everyone else was panicking, yet you stayed calm.” (Pause for a second. If the eyes start to move, then proceed to talk. If they do not move their eyes, proceed to talk anyway, but just start talking a little quicker.) Performer: “If you are a Fire sign, I want you now (again emphasize) to think of a memory where something went wrong, and you took charge and instinctively dealt with it.” (Again pause and follow the same instruction as above.) Performer: “If you are an Air sign, I want you to think of a time where you predicted something was going to happen and then it came true”. (Again, pause.) Performer: “If you are an Earth sign, focus on a situation where you made a really educated decision that you believe no one else would have made.” Here is what will happen. Because the participant has not thought about the memory before that moment, their eyes will wander off to find it. The reason for continuing to talk is to nonchalantly suggest you have not seen them thinking. You now know the element! This means you are down to three star signs with no anagrams, and no fishing! Just to suggest you don’t know what they are thinking of, after you have gotten to the end of the above script, finish with:
Performer: “So you have either an instinctive, intuitive, decisive or calming scenario in mind. I don’t know which one or what that particular scenario it actually is.” This just solidifies that you don’t know. Start to give a reading from the outlined foundations provided earlier. Now that you know the element, you can use the “Cups” principle discussed earlier and be on the nose with the star sign. It is not difficult to be able to read the participant to be able to guess the exact situation either! Now you are hot reading, as you know what general type of scenario this is, making it not that difficult. The reason for continuing to talk while the participant is reacting is so that they never feel you have seen that reaction. It is a tiny subtlety, but makes a huge difference. From this point, you are down to three star signs with no fishing whatsoever. Then you can use Michael Murray’s “Cups” Principle to get down to one star sign or employ one of the principles addressed above. Guess – Time Delay and Clean Up This is essentially what it says it is. You are going to guess the star sign. I hit a lot with this; it’s a one in twelve chance you will get this right. After doing it for some time, I find the hit rate is crazy. A nice line to use on a female is: Performer: “Are you a believer in astrology, or star signs?” Most do! If they say “No”, propose to show them something interesting. If they say “Yes”, respond: Performer: “I think it is an amazing thing. Even though the stars are thousands and thousands of miles away, they very much do have an effect on our lives here and now. Our star signs very much represent our characteristics and traits. If you were to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?” What you have achieved is that you have set yourself up for them to think about the star signs, to think about their star sign and its meaning and then to answer that question with this in mind. If you had just asked them on the spot, you may have received a random answer.
Now you will get an answer like “Headstrong” or “Calm.” This will often give you a little clue as to which star sign the participant is. If you are going in cold, make an estimated guess and take into account the way they are talking and acting. Remember, if they believe in star signs and they read their horoscopes daily, they may just act the way they are portrayed in their horoscopes. Take the punt. Performer: “Are you a (throw out a star sign)?” You get a Yes or a No. Performer: “What star sign are you?” They will respond with which star sign they are. You may have some luck if you have remembered the elements. If they say Cancer and you have said Pisces, they are still both Water elements and you have a hit. It really doesn’t matter if you do not hit. Remember, this is your opening to reading the person; you are not going to be exact when you first start! Give the participant a reading about their star sign! This creates a time delay. Then move into Isabella’s Star being down to one date and rock them with the kicker! Honestly, this is still amazingly impressive. If I have nothing on me and I want to perform Isabella’s Star, I would not be worried about doing this. You can always apply this line. Performer: “Now that I am starting to know you a little better, let’s see where we (emphasize “we”) can take this together.”
The frame This was originally meant to be my first contribution to ‘The Riddler’ – a magazine that Atlas Brookings and I were going to put together. The Riddler never made it to production due to time restraints – Me and Atlas were at the time unexpectedly run off our feet with shows, consultations, lectures and our social lives and it never quite took off. BUT – That doesn’t mean that it won’t in the future.
Zodiac routines are one of my favorite premises. I never realized just how powerful they were and when I did I tried to get them cleaner and cleaner. This is one that is going to take some practice but when you work this and refine it, it just seems like a casual conversation and at the end when you reveal the star sign trust me it knocks people for six.
Effect While sitting with a participant, the performer starts to read the participant to an accurate degree. He writes on a piece of card what he believes the participant’s zodiac sign to be, when turned over it is confirmed to be so!
Breakdown Whist working out in France with a good friend of mine I was asked to create the ‘holy grail’ of star sign revelations. To me any star sign reveal was the grail if it was performed correctly. But – Some people are never happy and want cleaner and cleaner (which is not a bad thing). The holy grail of star sign divinations would be to walk up to anyone look into their eyes and instantly say their star sign. Other than an intuitive ‘guess’ (guess being the operative word) there isn’t really a method for this. This got me thinking, I played out the above scenario in my head a few times and in all honesty it sucks the fun out having an invisible process. So I created this - I will write the exact script out with nothing missing (well except a personal reading for the star sign they are). By the end of the script I know the EXACT star sign, this will give you an indication of just how hidden the method really is. I will then break down the script. We will assume the participant has accepted that they believe in astrology (it doesn’t matter if they don’t). The performer addresses the participant. Performer: “Every single star sign in the zodiac is represented by one entity and each entity has its own characteristics and traits. Let’s take a look at mine Pisces –
If we imagined looking at the picture of my star sign it would be two fishes swimming in correlation. If we take a closer look, we know that a fish is a represent that a person born under this sign is long time to get to where it is going and it has the way. It is ultimately the most appreciative because of all the adversity it has had to face.
slow moving creature. That would appreciative. It takes a fish a a lot of obstacles to pass along when it reaches its destination
It is intuitive it can sense danger and is often a bit of a lone wonderer only ever following a school should the school be passing the destination it is going to. I won’t go into any more detail, all I wanted to point out is the sort of direction this reading will go in. I may ask your sign later on. For now can you see your star sign as an image for me?” The participant confirms that they can. Performer: “I want you to imagine a large blank canvas in your mind, surrounding that canvas is a beautiful frame. Imagine painting a picture of your sign onto that canvas and give me a clear yes when you have done that”. Participant: “Yes”. Performer: “Just like every good painting, at the bottom of the frame is a plaque that states proudly the name of the painting. On this gold plaque I want you to imagine your star sign written in bold black letter. In fact, say each of the letters just in your mind to yourself and give me a yes when you have done that”. Participant: “Yes”. Performer: “Perfect, now bring your attention back up to the painting, imagine focus on the specific elements and shapes that are on the canvas. Ok, there is two elements that stand out in this picture to me instantly. The first is the painting is that of an animalistic nature, this is where I start to read you from what I am picking up on. I feel there are contrasting characteristics that stand out about you as a person. I feel that you are a guarded person based on past adversity, you keep people at an arm’s length until you feel you really get to know them and because of that I feel rarely people get to know the real you.
I also feel that you have moved recently or are planning on moving, does that make sense?” Participant: “It does!” Performer: “I thought as much as it almost feels that everything is flipped upside down and you have been questioning yourself recently pertaining to a certain situation which I won’t go into here as it’s not for everyone else at the table. I mentioned earlier that I am a Pisces and by all accounts it’s a slow moving creature when it is moving, which I mentioned was representative of achieving specific life goals. If your sign is what you would consider fast moving can you imagine it being a hundred times faster, slow moving being a hundred times slower and if it is inanimate or non-moving imagine it being still and serine. With you I think you feel this can often be and feel that you are rethink on the amount
are a go getter, someone who walks instead of talks but I a burden as at times I bet you burn the candle at both ends taking on too much. I know you are contemplating having a that you take on.
I know you will and can achieve any goals or aspirations you have, you just need to focus your energy into one thing at a time. Oh and the last thing, you have been thinking about telling someone something that is important to you but haven’t had the confidence to do it. Now is the time, follow your heart I promise you, you won’t regret it”. With that the performer writes something down on a piece of card and places it on the table facedown. Performer: “Out of interest what star sign are you?” Participant: “A Taurus”. The performer slides the piece of card forwards toward the participant and gestures them to turn it over. When it is turned over it says “Taurus” nice and largely across the card!
Breakdown I know what you are thinking, how on earth can you deduce a star sign from the above? This one is about as real as it gets and is genuinely using real techniques! Once you have done this a couple of times you will be using this for fun.
Let me let you in on the secret behind this effect. It all about looking for specific reactions during specific bits of the script. Let’s go over the script step by step and break it down. Performer: “Every single star sign in the zodiac is represented by one entity and each entity has its own characteristics and traits. Let’s take a look at mine Pisces – If we imagined looking at the picture of my star sign it would be two fishes swimming in correlation. If we take a closer look, we know that a fish is a represent that a person born under this sign is long time to get to where it is going and it has the way. It is ultimately the most appreciative because of all the adversity it has had to face.
slow moving creature. That would appreciative. It takes a fish a a lot of obstacles to pass along when it reaches its destination
It is intuitive it can sense danger and is often a bit of a lone wonderer only ever following a school should the school be passing the destination it is going to. I won’t go into any more detail, all I wanted to point out is the sort of direction this reading will go in. [Notice what I have done here, I have mentioned my star sign as a picture and almost explained to them how I want them to visualize theirs without yet asking them to visualize anything. I.E. I have mentioned it is slow moving and what that means (which will be relevant and important later). I have also removed Pisces from the equation by saying I am going to assume your star sign is different.] I may ask your sign later on. [This suggests that I might openly ask them for it and therefore if the prediction at the end doesn’t match (which it should but no effect is fool proof) you have suggested you were going to ask and therefore at the end if you have to resort to that it’s no surprise and doesn’t detract from the reading. Plus in saying you are going to be asking, it helps the participant be open and understanding. Instead of suggesting you are going to be guessing things there is no way you should know.] Can you see your star sign as an image for me?” The participant confirms that they can. [If they can’t this is the best excuse to move into a star sign anagram with the letters, you can now state that you would normally work via the picture but will do your best to work with the letters but are slightly out of your comfort zone. This is great as one phase of the Anagram there is a no (for the method to work)
and you have already made the excuse that you are out of your comfort zone and therefore it is acceptable.] Performer: “I want you to imagine a large blank canvas in your mind, surrounding that canvas is a beautiful frame. Imagine painting a picture of your sign onto that canvas and give me a clear yes when you have done that”. Participant: “Yes”. [This is important as you are conditioning your participant to respond with nods and yes’ to the questions you ask. It is imperative that you are working with an expressive participant if you get one that is not giving you yes’ or nods to the things you are asking of them I would move onto writing the star sign and peeking. There is nothing worse than having a mute participant, some people are just that way out.] Performer: “Just like every good painting, at the bottom of the frame is a plaque that states proudly the name of the painting. On this gold plaque I want you to imagine your star sign written in bold black letter. In fact, say each of the letters just in your mind to yourself and give me a yes when you have done that”. Participant: “Yes”. [This is the first imperative part, you are looking for how long the participant takes to do this. This is essential for this effect to work. If they do this really, really quickly you know it is Leo, Libra, and Virgo and if they take a long time you know it is Aquarius, Sagittarius, and Capricorn. Most of the time you will notice that people nod along as they are counting the letters, I swear its beautiful to watch as you just count the nods and BOOM you are more or less at the correct star sign with no work. Michael Murray has a beautiful concept called CUPS which I love wherein you ask the participant to think about the amount of letters in a particular word they are thinking of and based on the timing you roughly know the length of the word. I really loved the concept of that and that’s what inspired this, instead of asking them to think of the exact amount of letters I have them say the letters to themselves which gives me a better tell as they nod and I think it has a nicer feel to it (in terms of presentation) and fitting premise. You need to check Michael’s work out.] Performer: “Perfect, now bring your attention back up to the painting, imagine focus on the specific elements and shapes that are on the canvas. Ok, there is two elements that stand out in this picture to me instantly. [Pay attention to this line it is another imperative piece of scripting, as I say two elements that stand out to me about this picture whilst saying this I casually
gesture my hands like I am holding two bowls (from the weighing scales of Libra). Note** I gesture frequently and that really helps this to look like a natural and congruent part of the performance. The reason I make the statement about two things standing out to me instantly is if the participant reacts strongly at this point I know that the star sign is either Gemini or Libra and my work is pretty much done. It could have been Pisces also but I eliminated that from the equation earlier. If the participant has taken a long time to think of the amount of letters in their star sign and they are a little bit deliberating before they nod to say there is two aspects or elements then you know the star sign is Sagittarius (as it is half man, half man half animal). You the all for
need to learn to time this really perfectly, if you notice no reaction from participant that is also great you have just eliminated those star signs and the rest now are animals! (Virgo not included – I will explain what I often do Virgo later). So you quickly proceed with the script below.]
The first is the painting is that of an animalistic nature, this is where I start to read you from what I am picking up on. I feel there are contrasting characteristics that stand out about you as a person. I feel that you are a guarded person based on past adversity, you keep people at an arm’s length until you feel you really get to know them and because of that I feel rarely people get to know the real you. [Pause after you say “Animalistic nature” – This will give you your tell straight away if it is an animal, if you get no reaction at this point the likeliness is that the star sign is Virgo (again you have to go on the timing of the participant counting the amount of letters earlier). But 99% of the time they will nod and give you a sign that you are right. The rest is simple from here. I also feel that you have moved recently or are planning on moving, does that make sense?” Participant: “It does!” [This is a beautiful stock reading line that you will find hits a lot of the time. I often throw these in to try garner hits that are not relevant to the thing that I am performing. Little cold reading lines that suggest I am picking up on things outside of this situation. If you get a flat out no to your statement don’t worry – Just quickly fire back with, “It’s almost like everything has been turned upside down and there’s only a
few things that give me that feeling. A change of house, planning on moving career or recently started a new career or a big event that’s changed everything. Normally if the person is invested in you here, they will come in and save you. Trust me! They will give you credit for your feelings and when they do, just smile and say “the feelings were really strong you are really great at this”. Give them credit, they will feel now when you ask them other questions invested and will really want to show how great they are. If they say they have or are planning on moving just proceed.] Performer: “I thought as much as it almost feels that everything is flipped upside down and you have been questioning yourself recently pertaining to a certain situation which I won’t go into here as it’s not for everyone else at the table. I mentioned earlier that I am a Pisces and by all accounts it’s a slow moving creature when it is moving, which I mentioned was representative of achieving specific life goals. If your sign is what you would consider fast moving can you imagine it being a hundred times faster for me now, slow moving being a hundred times slower and if it is inanimate or non-moving imagine it being still and serine. [This is the last important part. You are going to be talking about the speed of their star sign. When you say to the participant “If your sign is what you would consider fast moving can you imagine it being a hundred times faster” Pause after you say this and watch for a nod, or movement to suggest they are doing it. If they are not nodding or reacting move onto the line about it being slow - It is all about finding the right timing, they will give you the tell you need to know it’s about watching. If they don’t nod on it being a hundred times faster you know it must be slow moving as the only inanimate or none moving sign is Libra and we already killed that earlier (when we mentioned the two aspects script). So I would suggest not putting a pause in-between slow moving and inanimate just make the script their flow together. This is where you have to remember the length of the word. I would consider Aries and Taurus to be quick moving – Cancer and Scorpio to be slow moving. These are fairly short words. Aquarius – slow moving Capricorn – Fast moving.
With you I think you feel this can often be and feel that you are rethink on the amount
are a go getter, someone who walks instead of talks but I a burden as at times I bet you burn the candle at both ends taking on too much. I know you are contemplating having a that you take on.
I know you will and can achieve any goals or aspirations you have, you just need to focus your energy into one thing at a time. Oh and the last thing, you have been thinking about telling someone something that is important to you but haven’t had the confidence to do it. Now is the time, follow your heart I promise you, you won’t regret it”. End of reading You should now be down to two star signs. Normally you will find it is Aries/ Taurus Scorpio/ Cancer Let’s pretend in this scenario it is Scorpio/ Cancer. I write Cancer down on a piece of card and place it face down on the table or in my top pocket (whichever I feel at the time) do this really casually don’t draw any attention to it. I then say to the participant. It is really interesting you have characteristics tied over from two star signs. “Be honest are you a Scorpio?” If they say No, ask them what they are. They will say Cancer slide the card forwards and say. I am glad I committed to this. Let them turn it over. If they say they are a Scorpio smile and say “I knew it!” If for whatever reason you get it wrong don’t worry, remember the reading is the important part.
When you say, “be honest are you a Scorpio?” And they say no and you reply with “what are you?” Let’s for example sake say they say Taurus. Don’t worry, just reiterate the bits from the reading that match Taurus. For example, animalistic nature, go getter, walks instead of talks just point out all of the things that stand out as being representative of whatever sign they say. The best mentalists (in my opinion) are the ones that are always suggestive that they know a lot more than they do. Think about psychics or mediums that ‘do it for real’ (note the invert) people believe them and give them credence based on nothing more than implication. Always make it seem like you know more than you do. Don’t worry about lots of hits, just worry about making people feel that you can see everything. Sometimes implying that you know what they are about to do or little off the cuff comments like “You changed your mind at the last second” really make people feel like you are inside their minds and following their process. So to quickly go over the process – Try deduce the amount of letters Is there two aspects to the picture? Is it animalistic? Is it fast or slow moving? These are all you need in order to deduce the star sign. Added idea This is only an added idea to dismiss Virgo instantly. When you have asked them to imagine the amount of letters and they look up back up at the picture address them. Performer: “I want you to keep saying the sign to yourself like, Virgo, Virgo, Virgo”. Do this while snapping your fingers if they are of course a Virgo they will react at this point as though you have hit the star sign and boom move into giving them a reading based on Virgo.
It always pays to know a little bit about star signs. There are plenty of sites on the internet that are just a search away that will give you everything you need to know about star signs and their particular qualities for free. This stuff helps massively whenever giving someone a personality reading.
Credits Daniel Love – Dream Signs What’s my Sign? – Bob Farmer Bob Hummer – Item pumping A Compilation of Contributions Getting to know you – Scryer’s 13 (Neil Scryer + Richard
Nod to star sign Effect The performer is on stage and talking about how he can just look at some people and guess specific pieces of Information about that person without ever knowing them. He proposes to attempt to show how this would look. He points at someone in the audience and says, “I feel you, sir, are a Gemini. Yes, you in the blue top with the glasses. Stand. Are you a Gemini?” The person stands and attests to the fact that they are a Gemini! You do not know the person, you do not know their star sign and you have not preshowed them in any way.
Breakdown This particular effect was one of the effects I performed in Italy that people loved, so much so the crowd at the lecture burst into a five minute conversation in Italian—the reason I knew it was good. (Luca Volpe translated for me!) This is incredibly simple and something I think has been totally overlooked. The uses of this, as you will see, are completely untapped. I want you to think about
the possibilities when reading this and to let a flood of ideas come into your head. The secret is really simple. After talking about being able to guess specific pieces of information, point at a mass part of the audience with your hand extended and say, “You, sir, you are a Gemini, correct?” At this moment in time, you don’t know who is a Gemini, but what is about to happen is poetry—you couldn’t make it up. Someone from that group in the audience will nod back at you!! Incredibly simple. The moment someone nods, quickly counter with, “Yes, you sir, with the (name out loud whatever they are wearing), stand for me. We have never met before; we have not talked before the show.” “Can you say out loud your star sign for me?” Audience member: “I am a Gemini!” As you can see, ultra-simple but so deceptive. If a series of people nod, remember who nodded and save that for later. You could almost rock a tossed-out deck without a deck. I know what you are thinking: what happens if nobody nods? (I have never had this happen.) There are a couple of remedies for this scenario. Making a comment for people to nod to: This happens long before the participant ever nods to confirm his star sign; it happens as an off-the-cuff comment earlier in the show. Simply state: Performer: “During the show I am going to be asking people in the audience questions. I will be pointing to people and asking if it sounds like them. If I ask you a question and it relates to you at any point, give me a nod.” This will ensure that later when you apply the “Reciprocation Principle,” the participant answers the question! If no one nods for whatever reason, that is not a problem either. Just simply state: Performer: “Ok, don’t worry, I am not going to pressure you; you don’t have to stand. I will point to someone else. You, madam, can you stand for me?”
Then you simply move into any other star sign divination piece. It is incredible simple but incredibly effective! As you can see with this principle (which I will go into more detail about later on), it illustrates what I believe to be the most important principle in any art form: Simplicity. The easier something is, the more time there is to play with presentation, which is ultimately the most important factor when everything is boiled down. With this divination the chances of their giving a nod are very high in all honesty. Over the last few years I have found that there are more “Libras” and “Virgos” than about any other star sign. I do not know why this is; maybe people have more babies around that time of year. I couldn’t scientifically explain why, but instead of throwing out Gemini, you could throw out these signs instead. However, star signs are one in twelve, and if you are pointing to a mass group you are bound to get a nod.
Reaping what you sew This is a beautiful little principle that I think you will love. It is not just limited to star signs. This was inspired by one of Banachek’s principles, “Harvesting.” This is completely different as you will see, but it sparked off so many ideas in my mind, and this is one that has stuck and I use frequently. Harvesting can be found in Psychological Subtleties. Let’s imagine that you have just anagrammed a participant and you are sure you know what their sign is. Address them: Performer: “Some people are easier to read than other people; for example, the lady over there (point to someone you/participant doesn’t know), that lady, is a water element. “The gentleman over there, he’s clearly headstrong, most certainly an Aries or a Libra, and you are a (whatever sign they are).” Now what happens is due to the “Confirmation Principle.” Since the participant’s star sign is correct, it confirms the rest of the star signs you pointed out to be correct for free. As you can see, this is easy and requires no extra work at all.
Mark Chandaue additional idea If you are working with a couple of participants, it means you can get the other participant’s star sign for free using this technique (without the use of a oneahead). In fact, thinking about it, this is almost (not totally) like a verbal oneahead. On paper this reads as something that very simple, but I promise that it works incredibly well. Once you have anagrammed the star sign of participant 1, this is where you will apply the “Reaping What You Sow Principle.” Let’s imagine they are a Libra. Begin by pointing around the room and pointing out others star signs, and then turn to participant 2 and say: Performer: “You’re the (whatever star sign participant 1 is, in this case Libra), right?” The participant will naturally say no (unless coincidentally they are). Performer: “Which sign are you?” They will tell you; let’s imagine they have said Gemini. Performer: “Oh, you’re the Gemini, which must mean that you (point to participant 1) are the Libra (or whatever sign you anagrammed). In close quarters it’s sometimes easy to get thoughts tangled.” Try this, and you will see the power of it.
Credits Banachek – Psychological Subtleties Mark Chandaue – Additional idea
Reductive processes – What you will notice throughout this volume is that you will often be torn between two or three star signs (if for example you brought the participant down to a season for example) or if you have got your participant down to two star signs at the bottom of a branch in an anagram.
I know these processes are littered throughout this volume, but I think on their own they make an interesting read and for that reason I have spent time compiling them here in one section.
Derren’s repeat it in your mind principle This is a principle that has become so popular that most mentalists should know this principle. I first read of this principle in a routine called ‘Smoke’ and after reading it I thought it was genius, it is one of those principles that you will instantly start using as it is that good. Let’s assume that you are down to knowing that the participant is either an Aries or a Taurus, you look at your participant and address them – Participant: “Look at me, in your mind say your sign over and over again just like Aries, Aries, Aries”. If your participant reacts then you know they are an Aries, you smile and then proceed. If your participant however does not react, quickly counter with – Performer: “Saying it over and over until you hit a nice pace”. You now know that the sign is Taurus as you have eliminated Aries as the participant thinks that you was using Aries as an example. As you can see this is a great tool to have in your arsenal.
The wash principle This is something that I came up with a long time, the idea for this routine is a verbal out very much like Derren’s above this one can be used alongside Derren’s (if you need to more than one reduction process) or alone if you prefer it visually to using Derren’s. The Wash Principle can be used verbally or physically. This principle (when used wisely) will reduce your miss rating massively. In this instance, we will pretend we are working with numbers as opposed to star signs (just for this example). Let's start with using the wash principle in a physical scenario. We will imagine we are fishing for a number someone is thinking of out of a series of numbers, just to give it a real world context (like a pin divination). We have deduced that the last digit is odd and is reasonably low (3 or 5). Address the participant, Performer: “Can you think of the last digit for me? “Imagine drawing the number in the air; imagine seeing all the different lines and the way the number is constructed. Concentrate for me but don't say anything out loud.”
This is where you pick one of the odd numbers and start to draw the lines in the air. (We will pretend we have chosen 5. Start to draw the number largely in the air remember to draw it from the participant’s perspective so you are in essence drawing it backwards. Watch the participant’s face; if they react by starting to smirk, you know it's that number! If not, wipe the air clean and shake your head as though you are not seeing it clearly. Secretly we now know if it is or isn’t the 5 and now I know it is a 3! Even if you didn’t hit, you corrected yourself and therefore have NEVER missed. The theatrics are beautiful here also as it really is just two minds working in unison. You can see how this would be useful if you are torn between two cards when you are performing a psychological card force. I would use this in comparison with several of the forces in this book just to test for a sure outcome. If you are using a deck of cards you can create a simple multiple out to ensure the suit hits perfectly. Let’s use the above example of forcing the value of seven. All you have to do is get the color of the card using the above principle (lets for example say the card is red) – Cull the most likely seven to the top (the heart) and the diamond to the face. Place the cards face down and perform your psychological card force. It’s now a case of asking them to turn over the top card or you casually turning the entire deck over. You may have started to notice there is a multitude of different ways to achieve exactly the same thing; it is in all honesty situation dependent. You can decide which set of techniques work best for you once you learn how to jazz it becomes simple to force the suit. I would highly recommend checking out Michael Murray’s ‘Tombola principle’ from his book ‘A piece of my mind’. This is the perfect way to round this up when you get down to the color. It is so fair and so clean that it makes the process seem impossible from everyone’s perspective. I honestly think it is too good! As you can see above there are a multitude of different ways to force the color and the suit, it is about learning to jazz and pick the one that you feel is going to best for the job.
Two out This is something that I have used for years, it is probably one of the first reduction processes that I ever came up with. It is simple, elegant and the out that I use the most as it is easily useable in any situation.
If I am in a situation in which I am guessing star sign and I get it down to two signs, let’s use the same examples as above Aries and the Taurus. I would write Aries on a piece of card (A billet) and then place the billet down on the table writing side down. I then address the participant – Performer: “This I feel is going to be important later on, for now I feel I am ready to give you a reading based on what I instinctively feel about your characteristics”. This is where you would move into the reading (this is different each time dependent on the person’s star sign). For more examples of this, look at the readings volume in this series (Vol #2.) After the reading has taken place address the participant, Performer: “You’re not a Taurus are you?” (This is a closed question) The participant can answer one of two ways, IF the participant says that they are not, address the participant, Performer: “Good, I almost questioned my own instincts then, it’s not very often I do but in this case I am glad I didn’t. Please turn over what I committed to”. They will turn it over and it will be a hit! IF when you ask the participant the closed question – “You’re not a Taurus are you?” The person reacts and says that they are, you have created a hit React by saying “Your sign just hit me at the last second then, it was almost like everything completely fell into place”. With this outcome to the routine you are left with the billet on the table – Getting rid of this is really simple, when you move into your next routine. Bring the billet back into play like it is a prediction for that routine and before you hit the reveal simply say, Performer: “I think I was a little bit over confident when I made this prediction, I am going to change it”. Pick it up off of the table and then change it to whatever prediction you feel is relevant to that effect. If you are not following up another effect, you can still use this out you just have to change the construction of the prediction. Make notes on the piece of card all the way through and make it apparent that you are making notes. Little things like – Strong minded, outgoing (complimentary things).
State that you are making notes for yourself, when you have wrote a few things write – My instincts tell me this person is an Aries. When you are done, place the notes down and say – Performer: “I feel I am ready to tell you what I have picked up on”. Then give the participant the reading, and just as above lead in with the closed question – “You’re not a Taurus are you?” If you get a yes, simply say “I am glad I trusted my instincts” – Pick the billet up and place it into your pocket and the participant will never question the billet as they think that its purpose was just to make notes.
Two out (VERBAL) This is a very quick way to reduce two signs to one verbally – Performer: “When I met you I mentioned that you had specific characteristics and traits tied over from another sign… I instinctively felt when I sat down that you were a XX” (Name one of the two signs) pause for a beat – If the participant reacts then you have hit if they do not simply follow up with “I after getting to know you better and getting a better feeling for your actual characteristics and traits know that you are most definitely a XX” – This is where you name the second star sign. This is a very simple and elegant way to apply a hanging statement, it is a clever way to quickly reduce two star signs to one without ever missing.
Three out To start we will be using a Bill Cushman - Terasbos style opening (just for the first phase). Write on three separate business cards the three potential signs (during the reading), in this case it is Pisces, Aries and Taurus. On the back of the Aries card write Taurus (don’t let the participant see you do this, on other words don’t draw attention to it). You have a Pisces card, a Taurus card and an Aries card with the word Taurus written on the reverse side. Say to the participant, Reader: “Based on the reading I have given so far there is only really three star signs that you could be. Lay them out in front of the participant with the signs face up (placing the hidden Taurus facedown, so you have Pisces face up, Taurus face up and the Aries card face up with the hidden Taurus written on the back facing the table). Reader: “It is my job to try and eliminate your sign from the rest of these”. – (This line is an essential line). Before we go any further yes or no can you see your sign written upon of these cards?“
We obviously know there is going to be a yes at this point. Reader: “Concentrate on your sign for me, look at me, in your mind tell me which one you are…OK” Reach down and pick one of the pieces of card up – Go for the odd one out, in this case it is Pisces. If the participant reacts, you will know if you have hit the nail on the head - If not, quickly tear the piece of card like it is no longer relevant and start reading the participant again. Performer: “Clearly a head strong personality type, believes actions speak louder than words (this is where you use the zodiac readings from information offsetting). Finish the reading and pick up the cards from the table ensuring you don’t flash the back of the Aries card (where Taurus is written). If you wanted to let the participant casually see the backs, the Taurus card is blank on the back so as long as that is on the bottom when you pick the cards up you can flash the back. Shuffle the cards around so the participant doesn’t know which card is which and always ensure you hide the hidden writing. Hold the Aries (with Taurus on the back) card with the fingers covering the hidden writing. Whilst doing this you tear the actual Taurus card (don’t let the participant know which card you are tearing the blank side should always be facing the participant and when you have torn the card, place the torn pieces face down. Reader: “What sign are you?” Wince whist you ask this question like you are still not sure you were right. If they say Taurus, just drop the card on the table Taurus side up – If they say Aries drop the card Aries side up on the table and act relieved. It is as simple as just turning your hand over and you are guaranteed a hit. Painfully simple but super effective. If you are ever doing a routine that ends in an unsure 50/ 50 you can also use this mechanical method. It is super clean and super fair.
Passing star This is simplicity in itself, I shared this with Fraser and he couldn’t believe how simple but effective this was – Let us for example sake say that you had used one of the aforementioned reduction processes earlier in your set meaning that you cannot use it during your star sign divination. At the start of divination process simply say,
Performer: “It’s really strange, for me this is a rarity all night you have seen me picking up on things in a fairly straight forward manner. I instantly picked up on the feeling that you have characteristics or traits belonging to more than one star sign. This is either because you have adapted other traits via necessity or a secondary star was passing at the time of your birth and you have traits that are essentially the tail of that star. Let’s try this and see where we end up as I am as intrigued as I feel you are. (This is where we pick our divination system and come down to two signs). ENSURE THAT YOU APPLY A READING. Performer: “It’s really strange for me as I am now down to two signs and it’s really, really annoying me. I am just going to go with my instinct and if I am wrong it doesn’t matter as it will lead me directly to your sign. I feel with you, you are XX” It really doesn’t matter now, the participant has been openly given an explanation as to how you were tied between two signs and this can make the process feel more real. If I hit, I just move on and take the hit not drawing attention to the fact that I could have missed. If I miss and then re grab the hit, I follow with something that is I feel the cherry on the cake. Performer: “Do you ever check your daily horoscope online? Or In a paper?” Let the participant answer – Performer: “I want you to check your reading in the paper or online tomorrow but don’t just read the reading for your sign take the time out to read it for XX and I wouldn’t be surprised if that sign has more relevance than your sign when you read it”. This is a typical display of ‘White coat syndrome’` each of the readings are designed to be as ambiguous as the rest. By me saying the reading has more relevance if the person believes in readings and astrology they will instantly find more relevance in the second sign (the one that you missed on) and everything comes full circle. Again really simple and really elegant.
Mixing principles – The beauty of these type of routines is that they are interchangeable, take for example the ‘Double star sign divination’ – You could adapt Dominic Daly’s idea which would make this routine instantly tighter by applying a script as such – Performer: “Focus on the first letter of my star sign, slowly move to the second and the third what letter do you feel this is?”
Then when they call it out you clock the letter and BOOM you instantly know what star sign they think that you are. They are going to be wrong anyway (unless they are coincidentally right). You can see by adding this principle to this routine how much easier it makes it in performance. A lot of routines in this volume are like that, they each have merit and work on their own but mixing them together creates a new and interesting way to perform the effect and has a direct effect on the outcome. Think about your routines very carefully, think about how you are constructing them and what works with what for you –
Paul Voodini – A happy Birthday! Introduction I have long been interested in the possibility of determining in seemingly impossible circumstances, somebody's birth date. This interest started as a teenager when a friend and I were talking to a girl we had just met. As these things go, my friend and I were trying desperately to impress the girl, and, again as these things go when you're a teenager, we began to talk about star signs. “Can you guess what my star sign is?” asked the girl. My friend went first and got it wrong. I went second and got it right! For a short while I believed that I had some uncanny sixth sense that allowed me to perceive people's star signs without a word being spoken. This belief lasted about two minutes as I ran up to another girl and tried to demonstrate my uncanny ability again. This time, of course, I got it wrong. It appeared that divining star signs was not one of my super-powers. As I entered the world of mentalism, I discovered that the star sign prediction is one of the holy grails of the goatee strokers and temple throbbers. Normally these entail progressive anagrams and the like, and so me being me, if I was to attempt to divine a star sign, I'd just guess. After all, 1 in 12 times I'm going to be right. And believe me when I say that's more often that I usually get with progressive anagrams. So, just for fun, I decided to come up with an easy, direct way to correctly predict a person's star sign. But once I'd worked on the idea, I realized that not only could it be used to predict a star sign but it can also be used very easily to know the exact birth date. So there are two possible ways to use this technique – to divine a star sign or the birthday. Or, perhaps even better, to know both. I will begin with the routine as it looks to the spectator. As always, no two performances will be the same but the following 'script' will give you a good idea of how I present this routine. I will then go on to explain the 'secret' or 'trick' that enables you to mysteriously know not only the star sign of your spectator, but also the birth date!
The routine Performer: Hi there. I'd just like to try a little something, if that's okay? You may or may not be aware of this, but one of the ways that a 'mind reader' can practice his skills is by correctly deducing somebody's star sign without a word being spoken. Now, before we start, can I ask: do you know your star sign? Volunteer: Yes, yes I do. Performer: That's great. Now obviously don't tell me what your star sign is. Just have that thought in your mind, and perhaps also, along with your star sign, also be thinking about the date of your birth. Don't worry about the year, but just the day and the month. So for me it would be the number 16 and the month of March. Okay? Volunteer: Okay. Got it. Performer: Great, and despite the fact that I'm trying to pick up on your star sign, this is really all about the day you were born, your birthday. That's what this all boils down to. Now birthdays can be strange things, a little like Christmas. It can be a very happy day, or it can be a little sad if you're missing someone. Perhaps a husband or boyfriend who has to be away on your special day, or parents who live a long distance from you. So, as humans, we developed a way to ward off the sadness that absence can bring. Long before telephones and texts and emails, we developed the birthday card. It's a way of simply saying 'I'm thinking of you on your special day'. Now some birthday cards are heartfelt, others are humorous. Some are humorous without meaning to be, and I'm sure we've both had awful birthday cards from aunts and uncles or even our own parents that have made us cringe! Some birthday cards take on huge sentimental value – cards from loved ones, sweethearts, or children can become cherished items that we save and keep locked up in a box of precious trinkets. Every now and again we may take them out of the box, read them again, and feel sad, happy, or just nostalgic for days passed. Birthday cards can be very powerful things, despite the fact that they're just, essentially, small pieces of cardboard. I have here a pack of playing cards. It's a bit of a stretch, I know, from birthday cards to playing cards, but bear with me. It'll all make sense in a moment. What I'd like you to do is think about your birthday, but also think about what's going on in your life right now. What's important to you right now? There are four main areas that generally concern or interest people when it comes to their lives. These are: Love, obviously, relationships, family, friends, and those kind of things. Secondly, money, wealth, work issues. Thirdly, change, people think about progressing, moving on, changing jobs, and those kind of things. And lastly their dreams, their hopes and ambitions. Four areas that concern people, and, as luck would have it, there are four suits in a deck of playing cards. Each of those suits ties in with one area of concern. So Hearts obviously ties in with love. That one's easy. Diamonds ties in with money and wealth. Again, that makes sense. Now Spades is all about change. If you imagine a spade being a kind of sword with sharp edges, cutting through the dead wood, or perhaps a spade making changes in the garden. And finally dreams and ambitions is Clubs, and if you think of the shape of the Club emblem, it sort of looks like a thought bubble in a cartoon or comic, so thinking about your dreams and your hopes for the future.
So what I need you to do is think of the number of your birthday, so for me it would be 16, and also think of the suit in the cards that ties in most closely with what's going on in your life right now. Love, money, change or ambitions. Now obviously if you're birthday is from the 1st through to the 10th, then the card is fairly obvious. For the 11th, we can say the Jack, 12th is Queen and 13th King. If it's a double digit number above 13, you need to think of two cards. So for me, with 16, it would be the Ace for 1 and the number 6. 1 and 6 for 16. Okay? Likewise for, let's say, 23 you would pick a 2 and a 3. So what you'll have in mind now is either one or two cards and a suit. Right? Volunteer: Yep, got that. Performer: Great. I'm going to hand you the cards now and I want you to look through and find your special card or cards. The one you're thinking of right now. Once you've found the card, place it face down on the table making sure that I don't see it. The performer hands the cards to the volunteer who looks through the deck secretly and selects either one card or two cards depending on their birth date. She places the cards face down on the table, and the remaining deck of cards is placed to one side. The performer then takes an envelope out of his pocket and places it on the table. Performer: In a moment I want you to place your special card into this envelope, a little like a special birthday card to yourself! But first, there's something missing. We need a card to represent your month! So again with thoughts of which suit you'd like, think of the number that corresponds with your month of birth. So for me, it's March so my number would be 3. Okay? If the number of your month and the special suit has already been used for your birth date, don't worry. Simply choose a different suit. It's not too important. Volunteer: Okay, yes. The performer hands the volunteer the playing cards and instructs the volunteer to simply place the card face down on the table, next to the birth date card(s). He then mentions the envelope again, and asks the volunteer to secretly place her special birthday cards into the envelope, making sure the performer sees nothing, and then to seal up the envelope and if possible to place it into an inside pocket close to her heart. If this is not possible, she is instructed to simple hold the envelope containing the cards against her chest, close to her heart. Performer: Okay, so now I need you to continue thinking of your birthday. It would help if you can imagine a particularly happy birthday from the past. If you can't, don't worry! But try to have happy thoughts of your birthday. And let me see if I can at least pick up on your star sign. Okay.... yes.... mmmm.... not so sure about this. Okay, I'm going to have to go for something. If it's wrong, it's wrong. But, I'm getting Gemini with you. Is that right? Volunteer: My god! Yes! I'm a Gemini. Performer: Great! But there's more here. You're thinking about work or money issues right now. Perhaps you're wondering about your job or whether there's enough money coming in? Would that kind of thing make sense to you?
Volunteer: Yes! That's exactly right! Performer: Okay. Now I think we've got a particularly strong connection here, so I want to see if we can take things even deeper. Keep thinking of your birthday. Don't lose focus. Keep thinking. The month is June. June. Quite early in the month. Not the 2nd. It's the, it's the 3rd! The 3rd of June! Is that close?! Volunteer: That's exactly right! My god! The volunteer opens up her envelope and reveals the cards that she secretly chose.
Explanation Marked cards. You peek the marks before she places them into the envelope.
Subtleties Presentation is everything. Get the volunteer to imagine a happy birthday and she will be filled with a warm fuzzy glow. Some people will even thank you afterwards for reminding them of memories they'd not thought of for years. That's, genuinely, a nice and often humbling piece of feedback, and it's a pleasant experience that you as a magician can give to people. Far nicer, I think, than telling them to empty their mind, wow, that was quick. Sometimes you might find it fun to simply predict the star sign and not the birth date. This is especially true if performing the routine more than once around the same table or amongst the same group of friends. Ham it up and claim to have a 'special link' with one of the group, and correctly get their birthday exactly right, whereas with others you can 'only' pick up on the star sign or the month or a rough estimate of the date. At the end of the PDF is a list of star signs and the appropriate dates. These are pretty simple to remember, but if you can't (or don't want to) remember them, simply skip the star sign element and predict the month of birth and then go on to get the exact date. People are fascinated by star signs though, so I would always recommend that approach. Very often the volunteer will need two cards for the birth date. This isn't a problem and you will never be stumped as to which card represents the first digit and which represents the second digit. This is because of the way things fall with the Queen being 12 and the King being 13. The next possible digit in 14 (an Ace and a 4), which can't be confused for the 41st! Also an Ace and a 2 must be the 21st as 12 is represented by the Queen. The suits are only important in the birth date. Don't worry too much about locating the suit when it comes to the month card. Your volunteer will already have told you what issues are important right now with the selection of the birth date card(s). The meanings of the suits are just common sense, not even close to being cold reading. And you are only going to touch on the issues in the most general sense anyway. If you wanted, you could go into a far deeper reading of the issues, but that's not necessary. In this scenario, where the motivation is the recalling of happy birthday memories and a demonstration of a wonderful ability, a deeper reading is not required.
Most volunteers will select a Hearts card. Love is a prime motivator. This is followed by Diamonds. Money is also a huge motivator in life. Way down the list are Spades for changes and Clubs for ambitions. But you will get them, so be prepared. If a volunteer selects two cards for her birth date and they are from different suits, interpret this as there being two different issues at work in her life. My favored type of marked cards are the Boris Wild. I keep saying this but they never send me any free packs. I think I prefer Boris Wild purely because they were the first pack of marked cards I ever got, many years ago, and so I am used to them and can spot the mark in about a second. There are others on the market that are generally thought to be easier to read. When looking for the mark, don't rush. This routine gives you all the time in the world to spot the mark. A good time to spot the mark is when you are holding the envelope and are indicating that the volunteer should place her special 'birthday cards' into the envelope. You point down at the cards and that action makes it perfectly natural for you to look at the card backs. The subtlety with the envelope, aside from being a prop that works well in the 'birthday card' setting, is that after the event the volunteer and other spectators will remember that the cards were placed inside an envelope so there was no way you could have seen them or peeked them or cheated in any way.
Star signs ARIES: 21 March – 20 April TAURUS: 21 April – 21 May GEMINI: 22 May – 21 June CANCER: 22 June – 22 July LEO: 23 July – 22 August VIRGO: 23 August – 23 September LIBRA: 24 September – 23 October SCORPIO: 24 October – 22 November SAGITTARIUS: 23 November – 21 December CAPRICORN: 22 December – 20 January AQUARIUS: 21 January – 19 February PISCES: 20 February – 20 March If you find someone with a someone born on the 19th or 'on the cusp' of two signs, aren't sure which star sign
birth date that lies close to a 'switch over' point, for example 20th February, you can talk about feeling that they were born that there is a 'duality to their nature' and sometimes they they are etc.
Thank you for purchasing this short PDF. I genuinely hope you have fun with the routine, and if you can expand on it and take it to higher levels, all the better! Please be sure to pop by my website at www.readerofminds.co.uk to check out my range of PDFs for the mind-reader and mentalist. Fondest regards, Paul Voodini November, 2013
A little poem – Stephen Young This little poem will help you remember the order that the star signs fall throughout the year (Starting with Aquarius). This is the system that I personally used to help me remember the order of the star signs. I have found that by learning this and putting it into practice in all aspects/ areas of my life I now no longer need to think about the poem and can instantly recite these off by heart. That would have not been possible if it were not for this poem, nor would performing IS2 as seamlessly as I have learnt to do. -
“AQUARIUS rains so FISH can swim, The RAM and BULL come charging in. The TWINS on giant CRABS will ride, The LION sits by the VIRGIN’s side. To BALANCE out the SCORPION’s sting. The ARCHER shoots the GOAT for its skin”. This will also teach you the pictures associated with each sign. I cannot express how much I love this poem.
Zodiattack – Alain Nu Originally I called this principle the Iconographic Fishing Exercise on the Zodiac (or IFX) — a name designed to scare people away from wanting to learn it. Looking back at how few people contacted me about this idea, the title did indeed fulfill my wish. In 1996, IFX was my first attempt at constructing a branching system based on images (or icons) that are understood about each individual sign. This version of Zodiattack is the one I use today. First published in Jeff McBride’s “Mystery School Book” in 2003, the final version was published in February 2007 in my limited edition book, “ Nu Secrets and Realities,” and this is the version you will be reading. In “Nu Secrets,” however, I only gave one clue which explained how this could be used in combination with other systems. For the first time ever, my ENTIRE system using branching zodiac concepts will be fully disclosed within these pages, linking effects published in several sources as well as quite a bit of unpublished material regarding the application of what I call “Synthanagrams.” But more on that later. Try this bold strategy on first for size... Start by telling your spectator, “Sometimes synchronicity plays a part in determining your star sign, for instance, the last three people I tried this on were a Virgo, an Aries, and a Gemini. Are you one of those three signs?” Here, your aim is to either discard three signs immediately, or narrowing your choices to three. The key is to make it feel like nothing yet has begun. You’ll notice how the ANP strategy is throughout this system
RULE OF THREE This is an updated version of this section, and this particular part of the system was an intellectual hurdle which took years of re-examination to make this work. This section of this branching model has always been the weakest part of the system, but in this third edition re-print, I have made some adjustments that allow it to feel more natural. I believe that anyone who has read through earlier models of this work will agree. If, by chance, your spectator tells you that indeed she is one of those three signs, you have now reduced your odds to one out of three. Jump on this opportunity by saying “You’re not an Aries, are you?” Obviously what you are hoping for here is a hit, but because you are using the Ambiguous Negative Pump principle, you are asking this question with an ambiguous inflection. By doing so, if they tell you that they are not an Aries, you can respond with a statement that encourages your spectator to react in ways that will determine your next move. Say, I didn’t think so; I didn’t think you were born in the springtime. You were born much later…” This statement will do two things. It will cause many Gemini spectators to disagree, since they are technically born in the springtime, or not much long after, but your Virgo subjects will take this as a hit. If they begin to disagree with you, cut them off at the pass and say, “You are a Gemini, aren’t you?” They are thus forced to agree, but they still may take you to task since most Gemini’s will believe correctly that they are indeed born in the spring. To this, you say, “I always thought Gemini was in the summer, probably because of the school year.” Gemini will ultimately be the weakest hit of all of them, but the revelation of their sign will be disarming. Don’t forget to tell them something more tangible about their personality in relationship with their sign in order to make it seem as if you were picking up on something about their personality, which made you come to your conclusion. This is the only way to get their mind off your pumping procedure. Finally, if they simply agree with your statement about their sign falling much later than the spring, you will al-ready know that they are a Virgo. Remember that with each revelation using the Zodiattack system, it is essential to disguise the interactive pumping method, by cloaking it with an actual character reading of your subject, whether based on their astrological sign or not. Otherwise, it will quickly become reduced to a guessing game puzzle (since that is essentially what this is). The purpose of all good mentalism is to always strive to magnify the strength of the simplest and most practical concepts for the intention to create the largest audience reaction.
HUMAN FACES On the flipside, should the spectator tell you that the signs from your “previous readings (Virgo, Aries, or Gemini)” do not coincide with her star sign, you say,
“OK, perfect— let’s get started.” Even though this moment could technically be considered as a negative or “no-response,” it will be for-given, since there are still 9 symbols left to choose from, and to the spectator, nothing has happened yet; you have only just begun. Continue by saying, “ You do know what your astrological sign looks like don’t you? I want you to imagine seeing it floating in front of you, staring you in the face.” As in the aforementioned “ambiguous negative pump” (or ANP) technique, you will once again begin by separating the hu-man signs from the animal signs. Nodding your head once, you say, “I see a face— it’s not a human face is it?” Let’s say the spectator says that it is indeed a human face. Reaffirm her response. “Yes it is, ”you say, “continue to concentrate—I do see a human face but the rest of it is not as clear. Were you born near the beginning of the year?” Based on your personal intuition about the spectator, you may decide to instead ask her if she was born near born near the beginning or the end of the year. Ultimately, you are secretly determining whether she is an Aquarius or a Sagittarius, but the state-ment will still appear vague to the spectator. Aquarians are born near the beginning of the year, Sagittarians near the end. The worst that can happen is that she will tell you that you are wrong, but either way, you will end up knowing her exact zodiac sign the moment she responds. It is easy enough to backpedal on your statement by saying “I’m sorry, I meant near the end of the year—that is correct, isn’t it?” The sitter will have to agree with you, and since, from the sitter’s perspective, you could have said “middle of the year” your initial statement will be forgiven. Nevertheless, you have now efficiently and effectively gained possession of the hidden knowledge of the spectator’s sign.
THE SCALES Contemplate the statement, “ It’s not a human face, is it?” Verbalized correctly, this statement can be a request for confirmation that she HAS visualized a human face, or confirmation that she DOES NOT see a human face. Slightly nodding your head once as you deliver this statement motivates the spectator to respond to you in some manner. Should she deny seeing a human face, quickly reaffirm her statement by saying, “No, it isn’t a human face is it? And it’s not the face of a creature is it? Or is it a creature?”
Watch the spectator’s face carefully as you say these words. If the sitter looks confused or says no, she is most likely to be a Libra. Libras will tend to act the most confused by any of the statements given with this technique, since neither a “human face” nor a “creature” repre-sents their sign. Watch out for these clues in your spectator’s reactions. Continue by saying, “…no, it’s an inanimate object or symbol of some sort.” Only one zodiac sign is not represented by a human or living creature and that is Libra, the scales. The average layperson, thankfully, is not aware of this fact. Using the above verbiage will affirm that she is a Libra. Give the spectator a short Libra reading before divining her sign.
FORGIVEN REACTIONS At this time, it is important for me to point out that the purpose of any divination procedure of this sort should never attempt to go any further than the point wherein the spectator might begin to think that perhaps you are gaining information by their responses (since that is indeed what you are doing). Hopefully it is always before that point that you are ready to announce their correct sign. This is the way all predecessors of these techniques have tried to design their own systems. It has also been a general rule that one should attempt to get no more than two negative reactions from the spectator during a “data-pumping” procedure. Using this formula, because of the linguistic ambiguity of each statement, it could be said that there are no more than two, but as few as zero perceived “no-responses” before one is ready to reveal the spectator’s correct sign. As opposed to the past progressive anagram systems wherein, with each stated letter from the alphabet, one will continue to narrow the margin, this system was designed to be “partially intuitive,” to allow for your hunches to play a role, and also the interpretation of the intuitive reactions of your spectator. Because of the linguistics used in this system, it is possible to get what I will call a “forgiven reaction” from a spectator at certain points of the revelation (one example would be at the beginning as one discards the initial three signs). Interestingly, in most cases, the result of these forgiven reactions can be looked upon as a “hit” rather than a “miss” because of the open possibility that one can twist the scenario linguistically to your favor. It is the combination of this method of articulation used along-side of the system itself that makes the overall method successful. I’d also like to point out that my friend, “Jas Jakutsch” is the one whose “nod-technique” I am using to illicit non-verbal responses. You can read more about this in his “ Completely Mental Series, Volume #1.”
CREATURES Should the spectator respond that her thought-of sign is a creature (eliminating Libra) there remain 6 signs with which to work. From the spectator’s perspective, you have just made one technically correct statement regarding her sign being a creature. The next statement is just as ambiguous and slices the odds in half, or better!
SIZE MATTERS Boldly using the ANP technique again, say, It’s a small creature, isn’t it?” If a small creature represents the spectator’s sign (Pisces, Cancer and Scorpio), she will respond affirmatively; if she is thinking of Taurus or Leo, she will object immediately. Capricorn, the goat, is the only sign of the six that will cause an uncertain reaction or response. As soon as you notice this, say “I mean it’s not a large creature like a lion or a bull…” If the spectator is a Capricorn, she will agree. If you are still unsure, however, ask if she was born in the winter. There is only one sign in the winter represented by a creature and that is the goat, Capricorn.
BULL AND LION As mentioned above, Leos’ and Taurus’ will generally object to their sign being represented by a “small creature.” At this, say, “ No, but you were definitely born in one of the warmer seasons—the Spring, am I right?” Since the “large creatures” only consist of Taurus and Leo (respectively spring and summer), by announcing only one season, you will then learn by the spectator’s reaction the precise identity of her thought-of sign. Also, from her perspective, it will appear as if you have four seasons to choose from, but you only have two. Thus one can state either spring or summer, whichever seems like the most intuitive choice. It’s 50/50 as to whether the reader can guess the spectator’s sign at this point, but given what has been deduced about the spectator from square one, the odds are in the reader’s favor. Even if the spectator responds negatively, you have only to say, “I’m sorry, I meant summer—I could tell you were born in one of the warmer seasons.” Once again, the accuracy of your follow-up statement will cause the spectator to forgive the inaccuracy of your last statement. You can now launch into a more specific reading of whichever astrological sign you now know her to be.
CHANGING SEASONS With an enthusiastic confirmation that the thought-of sign is a small creature , it will seem as if only two correct statements have been made about the spectator’s sign, yet you now only have 3 signs to choose from—Pisces, Cancer, and Scorpio. In the description mentioned in the “Mystery School Book’s” version of this effect, there is a method that breaks down the images of the fish, the crab and the scorpion as astrological “water signs.” Since then, I have found it more deceptive to attempt pinpointing the correct season of their zodiac, as utilized in other parts of this system. In this case, it will be either spring, summer or fall. Your first statement will be, “I’m sensing you were born in the later half of the year.” If she hesitates at all, you will immediately know that she is a Pisces. If she affirms the statement, she will either be a Cancer or Scorpio. Once again, it’s 50/50. I generally look at the person and say, “You know I was sensing summer…” Immediately read her reaction, and if you sense that you missed, continue by saying, “but something is telling me that it might be more in the autumn.” Once she affirms or denies, you will know what her sign is. When you know for sure what her sign is, give a short reading before revealing the correct answer. The time delay created by your intuitive reading, between the moment that you are sure of her sign and your announcement of it, will increase the impact of your final revelation.
ALTERNATIVE OPENING The opening of this system is very important because it lets you either hone-in on, or discard three signs right from the start. Rather than the “synchronicity ploy,” which is designed to be used in the course of a formal performance, a more spur-of-the-moment way to instantly get into the system, is by simply asking immediately upon first meeting someone, “ You’re not a Gemini, Aries or Virgo, are you?” As soon as they say yes or no, interrupt them and say “ Don’t tell me your sign, let me see if I can get it right…” I have used this method at an opportune moment for a client who I have just met, or immediately following a performance if I am surrounded by a small, post-show audience.
CHELMAN’S ZODIAC PROCEDURE The final icing on my system is not my own, but rather a procedure found hidden within his effect called Zodiac first published in “Capricornian Tales” by Christian Chelman. With his permission,
I have included this extra gem of an idea, here for you to use and contemplate. In his original routine, Chelman employs a method using playing cards to help gain him access to the knowledge of one’s zodiac sign. In my handling, the only thing that changes is that I have blended Christian’s verbal control procedure to zero-in on the spectator’s actual birth-date while applying my own systems of targeting zodiac information. This enables you to practice using this technique without the use of any extra props, thus giving you opportunities for a stunning climax after having revealed the spectator’s zodiac sign. I always try to incorporate this procedure into these systems. As you take your spectator through any one of the preceding systems, you will be pausing to deduce aspects of their character throughout. This is done in order to throw people off your trail while you qualify the topic of astrology, but also to divert their attention from the notion that any leading language is being used. While this is being done, you need to acquire a bit of information that will be stored in your memory for use later on. Casually ask your volunteer if she knows whether or not she is born on a “cusp,” or whether she was born more in between two of the signs. You can justify this question by informing your spectator that this information could possibly alter your reading slightly. If she responds that she was indeed born inbetween two signs, you know her birthday falls between the 19th and the 23rd of the month. If she does not know when the cusp is, clarify that most cusps are between these particular dates so she can give you this information regardless. Since nothing has happened yet, and she hasn’t told you between which two signs she was (or was not) born, this part of the conversation appears innocent, and not procedure-oriented. Store this information, however, as you will need it in a moment. This is a brilliant subtlety in Chelman’s method, allowing you to begin working with much smaller window of possibilities from the start. The next step is to determine how a spectator responds when presented with a true statement . Once you know her zodiac sign, you will be able to make a true statement relating to her sign. For example, if you know her sign is Taurus, you can tell her that you are sensing that it’s warm outside. “You were born in the spring!” Observe their reaction as you make what you know to be a true statement. Because every zodiac sign falls within two months, and every season falls within four months, in order to gauge the “truthiness” of the spectator’s exact birth date, you first name one nearby month that does NOT correspond with the sign. For example, if your spectator is a Taurus (April 21- May 20), you would say “ I don’t believe that you were born in March, but in April...” You intentionally leave the sentence unfinished and gauge their reaction. If it seems like the spectator is going to say ‘yes’ ” you end the sentence there. If you don’t get a clear reading, or sense a ‘no’ response, continue the sentence,
“…or May.” Here you begin to ride the spectator’s reactions, gauging your reaction to how they respond to the truthful statement you made earlier. Upon revealing the correct month, quickly determine and reveal that you also know their zodiac sign. This will feel like the end climax of the effect. However, once you know the month of the spectator’s birth, you will either have 10 days to play with, or 20, depending on which month their birthday falls in—and already having access to knowing if their birthday falls in between two signs gives you a distinct advantage, eliminating nearly an entire week and minimizing the possibilities. If you’ve determined that the birthday falls on the last 10 days of the first month of the sign, then, at some point during your interaction you can say, “ I’m sensing you were born within the last week of the month.” They must say yes to this, since they would have already told you if their birthday is somewhere within a couple of days around the 21st (the cusp) of the month. Of course, if that’s the case, her birthday will only be one of three days. Once you are down to such a small number of days, you can let your own intuition guide you by being sensitive to the person’s reactions as you call out the three remaining days one at a time. You may not get a strong reading off this, but even if you don’t, you can call off a date that hits in between all of the ones called, and at worst, you will only be off by a single day— “not bad considering there are 365 days in a year.” If her birthday falls in the last week, you can similarly zero in on her birthday by saying something like, “Were you born really close to the end of the month?” Getting a read off of that, if she says ‘yes’ you are most likely in the last three to four days. If the answer is ‘no,’ you will be working with the first few days of that final week of the month. Similarly, if she was born in the 2nd month of her sign, you will still need to recall the information you gathered earlier. Still assuming she is a Taurus, you will say something to the extent of “I’m sensing a person who is an avid learner within many different disciplines. I don’t know if this resonates with you or not… but with this in mind, I’m sensing that you were born within the first part of the month. Were you born within the first week? If she says ‘yes,’ you only have seven days to work with. You may now proceed with the above method, asking, “Were you born “really close to the beginning of the month…” If she says ‘no’ to being born in the first week of the month, adjust your statement to say, “ But it’s definitely in the first half of the month…” If she responds negatively, you know she is born between the 15th and the 18th of the month. If she told you earlier that she was born near a cusp, it’s a simple matter of just
knowing on which side of the cusp her sign is on to determine her birth date and only potentially be off by one day. Whatever the case, narrow down the most potential day by using the same techniques described above. These interactions are made while giving short cold readings mixed with descriptions of archetypal characteristics of her sign which you already have gained knowledge of. As you get better, you will find that zeroing in on an exact birth date is really not that hard, once you know their sign. Although working all this into an already complex system may lead one to suspect that incorporating both my techniques with Chelman’s may seem a bit “procedure-heavy.” I must point out that I have now been using these incorporated techniques for over ten years, and the results that one can achieve can be flabbergasting, with little or any who suspect that anyone can so quickly tell you this kind of information. In fact, over the years, there have been some heated debates among magicians as to whether or not I could actually do this! Thankfully, I am friends with a number of magicians and mentalists who have actually seen me perform this quite successfully during live performances and under some quite challenging conditions. In fact, I’m willing to say that, when it is performed well, it is the closest thing to actual mind reading that you can perform with no prior set-up. What might initially be seen as a guess from one out of twelve possibilities now increases its potential odds to one out of three hundred and sixty five!
Dominic Daly - Simple and elegant The performer asks the participant to focus on their star sign and by asking one question the performer instantly knows the star sign.
Breakdown This routine is amazingly simple yet strong and requires little or no work. The method is as thus The performer asks the participant to focus on their star sign, more importantly focus on the first letter in the star sign. After a few seconds he asks them to focus on the second and then the third. It is at this point that the performer carefully constructs a logical way to gain this letter. Performer: "I am struggling, I know this is going to make no sense right now but I'm often much better at seeing numbers than letters. Can you take this letter focus on it as a capital letter and then rotate it, flip do what you can to that letter so that it resembles a number for example N (performer draws it in the air) if you rotate it it resembles a 2. When you have done this tell me when you have a number in mind and if you just cant just say That you can't and we will go from there".
Participant: "I have done that". - Now once we get the number we instantly know the star sign. The reason being is that most of the signs have a different third letter. Therefore when you convert it to a number you instantly know the sign. For example 0-scorpio or leo 1-aries 2-cancer 3-gemini 5-pisces 6-sagittarius 7-aries 8-libra 9-capricorn There are a few in which the participant won't be able to make a number. No number relation Taurus Aquarius Virgo First I will talk about the way I personally get the number and then address what might happen if the participant cannot make a number. - Accessing the number. Performer: "I am struggling to pick up on anything, what number are you thinking about?" The participant will tell you the number and from here you will know the sign. - If the participant can't think of a number Performer: "Ok can you think of this animal?" If they are struggling you know it is Virgo or Aquarius as these signs are not animals. Then you move into the reveal from this point using one of the reduction processes outlined in this literature to get the exact sign out of the two signs.
Pete's additional commentary This routine is simple and elegant as the title suggests, when I first read this effect I didn't really fully understand its power and it wasn't until I road tested it that I realized just how strong it really is. There are a couple of points in the routine which I think need a little attention. But that's only because I would attend to them slightly differently (it doesn't necessarily mean I'm right) we all have our own ways to present things. One point in the routine stands out to me as a simple fix is asking for the number. I personally feel that after admitting to be struggling with the letters and then asking for the number it generates too much dead time. In performance for one person this maybe your only option but if there is ever a second person present (which is more than likely the case) I would suggest making a slight change to the routine. Performer: "Obviously the way that you focus on numbers is different to the way you focus on letters, I want to learn how you communicate numbers in fact xx (Second participants name) I want you to look at xx (first participant thinking of the sign) and take a guess at what number you feel it is. Don't worry if you are wrong, I am going to study xx (participant one) to see how they transmit numbers. Xx (participant one) if xx (participant two) is wrong it doesn't matter tell them what number you were thinking of to see how far off they were". This way the fail is on the participant and it is an indirect way to find out the number. Your response should be dependent on whether the participant gets the number right or wrong. If the participant gets the number wrong simply say "You can see that by guessing it's improbable to nail numbers you are thinking of I now think that I know how you think" (looking toward participant 1). If the participant hits, then say "It's interesting that when a connection is created just how simple it is to get in tune with the way that someone thinks". This is another place in the routine that I would add theatrical process - Now I know what sign it is I would ask them to focus on another letter in the star sign I know they can instantly convert into a number. This way I can hit for sure as I know the sign and the logic comes full circle in terms of the participant’s reality. From this point I can nail the sign (after giving a short reading, which puts a time delay between the process and the revelation).
One other area I would focus on in this routine is if the participant cannot focus on the letter as a number. I would apply a hanging statement and then the cups principle to be able to reveal the participants exact thought. The hanging statement I would apply is Performer: "My first impressions were that your star sign is of an animalistic nature (pause here) ". If the participant confirms you know that the sign is Taurus if the participant looks hesitant Performer: "but then my instinct told me that this was more grounded and intuitive sign". This is where I apply one of the many principles at my disposal to decide on one of the two star signs. In writing this might seem like a long routine but in practice it is over quickly and you have little to no chance of failure.
Zodiac Wheel – Pablo Amira History Sometimes objects can inspire creativity to take old methods and concepts and apply those using narratives that don’t only creates motivation behind the actions, but also memorable moments. Using common and archetypical objects is always good as visual anchor of the experience. Just check some pictures of serious performers and you will see that they normally hold a pendulum, crystal ball or other apparatus connected with the mysterious. In this case it will be this classic diagram that everyone knows, and this small piece of paper will allow you to create a fun prediction not only for the performance, but the participant´s own and unknown future.
Outer Reality “Tell me who your friends are and I'll tell you who you are….a classic line that show us that people around us influence us” the performer says while he is searching for his new participant. “What if we know in advance an important person in our lives? Or at least a particular characteristic of that person?” Then the performer invites a participant to play an “experimental precognitive” game. It is shown to him a classic diagram known as “Zodiac Wheel”, in which every zodiac sign can be seen and a marker which is used to write something relevant for the future.
After this the participant secretly in his back selects one of the zodiac signs, which was predicted in advance for the Mentalist. Both the prediction and the zodiac Wheel can be given away.
Inner Reality This is a great piece to use whenever you want to leave the impression that you know more that you have shown in performance. A nice approach to use sometimes in performance is to elongate the mystery beyond your presence and let the participant experience real mysteries, and the audience create fantasies about what he will experience and what you can do. This piece uses very simple objects, such as a business card for the written prediction, a marker and a stack of a few “Zodiac Wheels”. You can print this one for yourself. The core method of this piece relies in the “Dry Marker” Force. If you don’t know it, it is basically the idea to have a pre-marked object that will allow you to create the idea of free decision, while the participant does the mark wherever he desires. Because you hand him an already marked object and a marker that doesn’t work, the end result is 100% successful Print a few “Zodiac Wheels”, glue them to carton or heavy paper and mark one of them with a simple dot. Don’t to it too perfect, rather a dot and a small line. The best way to do it just doing it as the participant will apparently do onstage. Take a working marker, take the “Zodiac Wheel” at your back and place a dot. You are ready. Sometimes the use of this principle is in conjunction with a switch of markers, but this is not needed at all. Just use proper “Indirections” and you can let the audience believe for themselves that the marker works normally as any one. How? Simple, you will write the prediction during the performance, when in reality you have already the business card with your prediction written, so you will use the “dry marker” in yourself as well as using it to force the proper sign to your participant. Another great inner positive factor that the use of the “Zodiac Wheel” has is the circular shape and that it has. Why this is relevant? Because when you use the “dry marker” force, you will obviously show a dot that the participant never did, so if you use a rectangular shape paper for example, and the participant consciously makes a mark on the center and then you show a mark at the bottom/top, it isn’t consistent. In your instructions you will elicit confusion in this aspect as part of the strict conditions and fairness, so you will one step more ahead to create deeper mystery. Another way in which we will indirectly communicate the idea that the “Zodiac Wheels” are not marked in any way is with a CASUAL, and I mean CASUAL “Flushtration Count”. I normally have 3 “Zodiac Wheels” in a stack position. The top one is marked with my forced symbol (lets say LEO). So you show the bottom one to the participant while you explain this old diagram, and you do the sleight CASUALLY. Then you just hand the marked one to the participant without any attention or guilt. You are handing him a normal “Zodiac Wheel” as far as they know, right?
You can even (not needed but you can do it CASUALLY) cover the small dot that you did in the handed Zodiac Wheel while passing it to your participant. So, you establish the theme of the performance, present the props used, hand him the “Zodiac Wheel”, “write” the prediction, hand him the marker and now instruct him: “I will ask you to do a very simple task. Just by chance, like we meet people in your lives, you will do a simple dot somewhere on that “Zodiac Wheel”. Turn it a few times and then just do a dot somewhere. Now, is important, don’t stain your cloth! I am not responsible for any issue about that. And I know that if I don’t say this to you, you will do it, trust me , predicting the future is my business… Ok…. Turn…turn… now do it! Excellent, please hand it to me and pass me the marker as well, be careful, is permanent… Ok , thanks” As you can read in the script, again we are suggesting indirectly two times that the marker is normal. Adding a joke in between adds an nice small cognitive shift that cements the indirection in a deeper manner. Now is just time for some time delay while you revisit the conditions, now reveal the dot made by the participant (showing LEO of course) and focus in the reason of this action. This isn’t about your prediction the future, is about them predicting their own encounter with a new LEO person! Remember that. After this, you can show your prediction and have your TADA moment. Then congratulate your participant and remind him to be open to meet new people and contact you (your information is on your business card) whenever that special LEO person arrives.
Extra Ideas Other indirect way to show the marker as a working one, is to just make a small line in your hand as by accident during performance. In reality you always had it. Accidental events are great way to indirect communication (drop the cards during a routine in which you use a stack for example) Instead of “Zodiac Wheels” you can also use any type of circular diagram. In corporate work you can adapt the theme of conversation and use a diagram that shows a business model or something similar.
Inspiration and References The “Dry Marker” Force is a classic technique, that I first learn in Corinda- “X-Marks the Spot”. The use of a circular object as far as I know is original. The use of The indirection concept comes from my mentor Kenton Knepper.
The Zodiac Divination – Andreas Sebring Presentation The performer start the effect by saying: “Some people believe that you can tell the future by looking up at the sky. And that the sun, the moon, the stars and the planets position on the day of your birth have significant meaning for your future. If you believe in astrology and your horoscope, the day of your birth is of course very important. But I don’t want to know when you were born, neither your star sign but I need it later on. Then we can compare it to see if this make sense.” “Please write down your day of birth on this piece of paper for an example the 6th of May or the 12th of October. When you are done, fold it back so that the sun and the moon are on the outside” The participant write down the information and place it down on one of the signs of the Zodiac. During that process the performer write down a message on a pad, explaining that it probably make sense later on. Then he place the pad face down. The billet is placed down on the Zodiac on perhaps the Aquarius with the sun side up, and the performer continues: “Interesting, you have placed the sun on Aquarius. The sun represent your present situation and Aquarius is about choices and ups and downs. I think that you are the kind of person that often try to fill your life with so much activity and also in a way try to get the most out of your day, I’m sure that this sometimes leave you with a feeling of emptiness, perhaps because no one is around or if it just have been too much of everything. But still this energy you have is amazing and I believe that your friends really appreciate this.” Can you please place the moon on another star sign, the performer ask? The participant place the moon down on perhaps the Virgo. “Now I see, you place the moon on the Virgo. The Moon represents the subconscious part of you. The Virgo is also represented as the High Priestess in the Tarot cards. It represent the female power and also a good use of intuition. I think that you sometimes have the ability to know things, just without knowing why, this is an effect of the strong Virgo in you. With the Aquarius so present in your life it is important to listen to your inner voice, take a break sometimes and use your intuition. Does it feel right? If you learn to trust the power of your intuition and combine this with your energy, you will really be able to do anything, and also avoid to fall in the traps that brings you down.” “To understand your future, I need to find your star sign and I will use my pendulum and see what it tells me.” The performer brings his pendulum, place the billet in the centre of the Zodiac, and hold the pendulum over the piece. Soon it starts to move and it moves around in a circle.
Now, the performer explains, I have loaded the pendulum with the power from your birth. I will try it on the different symbols. He now places the pendulum over the symbols, but it gives no response until he reach the Capricorn, then it start to revolve in a circle. Oh I see, the pendulum reacts on the Capricorn. I assume that you are a Capricorn then. The participant agree and the performer turn his pad over and show what he previously had written: As warm and wonderful as you are, you must be born in winter He then continues Now when I know your star sign I can see parts of your future. As I said earlier you are a great resource for your friends, and I also feel that you will become an important person for one of your friends, a friend that will need your help to decide in an important situation. Your intuition is a key here, listen to your friend and give the advice that you feel are right. This favour will also be repaid in the future and I can see a change in your current working situation perhaps within 8 month. And… By the way in December, the 29th you will be celebrated, because that is your birthday right? Preparation A Zodiac about 25 cm in diameter A pendulum A small clip board or note pad with a tick sheet for the Star signs accurate date, placed third from top. A pen A billet printed with a sun and a moon on one side of the note. In a more impromptu situation the word can be written as well. The effect starts with a frame for the reading that also justify all of the moves and the information asked for. “Some people believe that you can tell the future by looking at the stars. And that the sun, the moon, the stars and the planets position on the day of your birth have significant meaning for your future. If you believe in astrology and your horoscope, the day of your birth is of course very important. But to make this fair. I don’t want to know when you were born, neither do I want you to tell me your star sign but we need it later on. “Please write down your day of birth on this piece of paper for an example the 6th of May or the 12th of October. When you are done, fold it back so that the sun and the moon are on the outside”
In this story and instruction everything are woven together. The sun and the moon on the billet. I is obvious that I need the information later on, but I don’t want to know it now. In the instruction I also make sure that she folds the billet in the correct way so that I can peek the information by using the Acidus Novus by Millard Longman. Of course any peak works well, but it is wise to use a method that gives the option to have a second look. After all – it is two pieces of information that have to be remembered. When I showed this routine to Peter Turner he showed me his version of Richard Busch’s Busch Peek. It is a brilliant one handed peak that works very well with the sun and moon billet. In a very casual way you show the two sides of the billet and in that time peak the information. Still you have the time to take a second glimpse if needed. The down side is that you need to read the information upside down. My solution for this have been to mark two lines on the billet, so I know where the information should be. That saves me a second. Write the day and the Month of your birth here
In the script I also emphasize the fact that I don’t want to know when she was born or her star sign. Later on when she recap, she will remember that. By giving examples of how she should write it down she will follow the directions. I find it much easier to remember the date 4th of August – one number and a word, instead of 4/8 1979. It also makes it easier to read which star sign she has on the tick sheet. You then take the billet back and peek the information and in the same time you say: “You see, there is a sun on this side and a moon on the other side. I want you to place it on one of the signs of the Zodiac with either the sun or the moon upwards.” The peek is done when you pay attention to the sun, in that moment you look down to the billet and read the date, then you turn the billet over and show the moon. Finally you give the billet the extra bend (reason explained later on) and hand it back saying. “When you make that decision I will write down something for later that I'm sure you will find very interesting.” When the participant take the billet you lift the two first sheets of your pad and glance your tick sheet and spot the participants star sign and which month she is born. If you have memorized the zodiac, this is of course much easier, but when I started to perform this routine, I haven’t yet learned them all. The tick sheet was an easy way to learn and still be able to perform. I also used a method to tape the tick sheet around the pen I was using. It is a bold move because the participant uses the pen, but as Max Maven said in VideoMind – no one pay attention to the pen. In either way you know the star sign and the time of year they are born and then you write down the following message:
Aries: 21 March – 20 April Libra: 24 Sept -23 Oct Taurus: 21 April – 21 May Scorpio: 24 Oct – 22 Nov Gemini: 22 May – 21 June Sagittarius: 23 Nov – 21 Dec Cancer: 22 June – 22 July
Capricorn: 22 Dec – 20 Jan
Leo: 23 July – 22 August
Aquarius: 21 Jan – 19 Feb
Virgo: 23 August – 23 Sept
Pisces 20: Feb – 20 March
As kind and wonderful as you are, I assume that you are born in winter Now the reading begins
The Zodiac reading system The reading is structured in three parts, the present, the subconscious and the future. By using the billet with a symbol of a sun and a moon, I both get a use of the billet, and also construct the structure for the reading. I wanted to make a reading that was very safe to pull off and also quite quick. A reading based on Cold reading normally takes a bit longer time to do, because you are working more with the reaction from the spectator and in that way structure the reading out of the person’s reactions. But sometimes there is not time and no place to do that, so instead I wanted to have a reading that was fast and flexible. Normally in a reading you focus on the past, the present and the future. In that reading you need to hit, more or less in the past and the present area. That is not tough, just by shooting from the hip with a few plausible scenario, you soon will hit, and from that outcome you just continue. The problem is that it takes time, and sometimes you need to use cold reading techniques that erase what you just have said and change it to something new. In this routine I wanted to have a more straight approach that are both plausible and positive. I also wanted to leave a good feeling in the mind of the spectator. My solution was to change the past to the subconscious. When something is subconscious, you can’t argue about its accuracy right, and you can give quite specific information with very low risk. If they deny it, you can always say that it is on a subconscious level. Neither can you argue about the future, so to tell about the future is definitely safe. The only
part of the reading that need to be accurate is in this way the present. Even so, most of the time you will hit with all of the statements with just a little practice. The structure of the Zodiac also gives a very nice frame. By using the twelve signs you have twelve aspects that you can structure the reading around. Even if I am very intuitive in my readings the structure helps me to give the reading in a fast way. The structure for the reading is: Present, subconscious and future. So if the spectator first place the moon on a sign, I then ask her to place the sun on another sign before I start the reading. If she place the sun at first, I start the reading right away. To add the odds for her to start with the sun I fold the billet once more and leave the sun on the outside, that makes the sun the most obvious choice to start with. The extra fold also prevent the billet to open up when it lays on the Zodiac. The effect is destroyed if the spectator can see the information – if the billet open up just slightly. I have made my system out of lots of different inspiration sources. Mainly I was inspired by Richard Webster’s Psychometry A-Z and Luke Jermay’s Tarot alphabet. Both Jermay and Webster use letters in the name of the person to find keyword for their reading. These keywords then gives the structure for the reading. I use five different approaches, which gives me access to loads of different outcomes. In my Zodiac reading I use the idea of keywords, but instead of the person’s name, I use the name of the star sign. In that way I easily can remember my keyword and it is also possible to practice the readings. I connect the star sign with a tarot card, which gives me another approach to the reading. In “real” astrology there is a connection in between the tarot and the Zodiac so if the spectator believes in astrology and knows something, you still sounds believable. I however does not use the traditional connection. Instead I use the tarot card that I connect the star sign with. This is based on the look of the card, the meaning and the key word. If you disagree with me, please make your own connections. I use the look of the symbols or the animal/creature represented and connect them to feelings, keywords or aspects. I use the NLP Meta program that are structured in opposites and the Myers Briggs Type Indicators, the MBTI system. Both these systems are constructed to explain how people are and the good part of this is that everyone are a bit of everything, even if some sides normally are more represented. That means that you will hit if you use this in the first part – the present, in the reading
NLP meta programs Match – miss match, walk away – walk towards, positive – negative, Focus on self – Focus on others, Reactive – Proactive MBTI aspects Introvert – Extrovert, Sensing – Intuition, Thinking – Feeling, Judging – Perceiving. Finally I also use the general astrological meaning for each star sign. In the compilation below you can see the structure and I’m sure that you instantly will do some connections. I will explain every part later on, but this is the system. Easy to learn and not much memorization. Remember that you only need one or two bits of information for each sign, that means that you can give a very long reading if you instead use more of the information, provided for each star sign.
Achievements Empress Activity Ability Answer Trust Emperor Travel
Symbolic meaning Heart – a loving person
Bull – strong and stubborn Numerology 2 cooperation Numerology 6 and 9 Relations and humanity Key hole – lock and unlock
Focus on self
5th house Love and children
The high priestess
Maiden – innocent
6th house Health and fitness 7th house Partnership and relations
Letter M – (Mc Donald’s) Food Arrow Goal minded
8th house End of something
Walk away – walk towards
9th house Travel and new ideas
Stick man –try to reach something Zig zag Ups and downs
10th house Career
11th house Friendship
12th house Conflicting interests
Charm Changes Chance Choices
Love Lust Life Letting go Valuable Variations
Love Lust Life Letting go Scorpio Strength Success Sex Smooth Sagittarius Strong Success Sex Smooth Capricorn Charm Changes Chance Choices Aquarius Achievements Activity Ability Answer Pisces Passion Playful
Temperance Sand glass Time is running
Focus on others
Astrological meaning 1st house The unique self 2nd house Economy and money 3rd house communication
Positive/negative 4th house Care for the family
How to use the system These five aspects covers enough and even more in the reading. An issue with readings is that it often takes a lot of time to learn a system and it is often hard to practice. With this system I wanted to create a reading that was easy to make but not based on memorized stock lines. Thanks to the frame of the Zodiac the system is very limited, but in that way also easy to learn. There is no need to memorize all the information in the system. The good part is that it is enough with just one of the aspects to start the readings. Thanks to the verity of the aspects, I find it easy to memorize. Perhaps it is hard to memorize twelve tarot cards, but a few of them is very obvious – especially if you are familiar with the tarot. The symbols is also a good methods, because you basically use the Zodiac as a tick sheet to remember. By just reading the system, I am sure that you have memorized enough to try to give a reading. Remember that a reading is a story. As a teacher in the Swedish language I have developed skills in writing stories and essays, of course this also means that I teach my student to write and tell stories. When you practice, try to connect the three bits of information and make bonds in between them. In this way the story become interesting and even if it isn’t 100% accurate, the connections make the story logical and plausible. For an example if the spectator choose Pisces, Scorpio and are born in Taurus, the story could be like this: “You place the sun on the Pisces. The sun represent the present and where you are right now and a person that have connections to the Pisces are often very focused and aware of time. I think that you are the kind of person that try to catch the moment and try to fill your life with meaning, this sometimes make you ahead of time, and I’m sure that your friend sometimes think of you as a great inspiration source. I feel that you are a very inspiring person with a lot of passion in what you are doing. You also placed the moon on the Scorpio. The moon represent the subconscious part of you, and if we are confused by the present, perhaps the subconscious have influenced you, especially if the subconscious are represented in the Scorpio. It is a sign of power and strength, and it also connects to changes. As you might know, the Scorpio can be the difference in between life and death. Even if it isn’t that dramatic in your life, I’m sure it affects you sometimes. I think that this is one of the reason why you are able to catch the moment, you have built up a strong trust and a willpower that help you make both tough and trivial decisions in your life. The strength and the power of the Scorpio affects you in that way that you can be more proactive and take chances, and if it doesn’t end in the way you have thought, you find another way. A person strong in Pisces and Scorpio will never accept a boring destiny, you will fill your life with so much value. Your future is connected with your star sign, the Taurus. The Taurus also is a strong sign so I can see an interesting future for you. On a subconscious level you are already ahead of making changes in your life and I can see that you expand your world even more. It might include a journey, a journey that will open your perspective. This journey will take place in two ways, both mentally, where you will expand yourself, which is good, because the connection between Pisces and Scorpio sometimes makes people a little stubborn. This is also a good skill to have, if you also expand your horizon. In this
journey I also see that you will travel to a new place which will give you a lot of inspiration.” What I do is to use some keywords, the symbolic meaning, some of the Meta programs and build a story. The three parts connect with each other and I finish the reading by naming the selected star signs, which make the circle complete. The reading also focus on the good side of life. The person should feel energized after the reading, and ready to conquer the world.
The different aspects Depending on your experience of readings and the method used, you might disagree or agree with my approach to the different aspects. I strongly believe that you should make your own system, with keywords and associations that are connected to you. In that way it is much easier to memorize, but as a start I will explain how I think around the different aspects.
Keywords This method is not really mine to explain. I suggest that you buy Webster’s Psychometry A-Z which is brilliant. My approach to this is that I have narrow the system down and included two or four keywords for every first letter of the star sign. If you already use a system like this, you can easy use that instead. With this system, there is not much to memorize. I think that the easiest way is to use keywords from your own language. In my system they are in Swedish of course, but I also have one in English which helps me to do readings in other situations. I use the keywords just to get an aspect to talk about, not necessary to include in the reading. In this way it can be a part of an interesting fact, as well as a general description of a character.
Tarot cards There is a lot to read and learn about the tarot. In my interpretation of the Tarot I can see both eras in a person’s life and the circle of life. The Major Arcana contains of 21 cards and every card represent something in a person’s life. It could either be read as a complete circle that start and end with The Fool or as a journey that start with The Fool and ends with The World. This means that every card in the Major Arcana can be connected in some way to every person, and in general it explain a story of a life that will fit for most people. The Minor Arcana is structured to give specific information in different situations. The cups, wands, swords and pentacles represent emotions and relations, self-fulfilment, challenges and issues, and finally economy and possessions. The Major and Minor arcana gives in this way a perfect frame for a reading. When using the Universal Tarot, you also get the pictures that often are referred to in the literature. The picture also explains the meaning of the card. I mainly use some of the Major Arcana in this reading. Some of them will be obvious if you are familiar with the Universal Tarot. The Star has a picture of a naked lady that pour water out of a lake with a cup – easy connected with the Aquarius. Other cards could have connection in the symbolic meaning of the card like the Virgo and The high Priestess. The Priestess represent the essence of the female power, which is my connection
to Virgo. I will list the general meaning for the cards in used and also my connection between the card and sign. Aries – Empress (Love because the sign looks like a heart) The Empress is caretaking and warm. It represent love and humanitarian aspects. Taurus – Emperor (Power, because a bull is strong) The emperor represent the male power, leadership and strength Gemini – The Lovers (a man and women on the card) The Lovers are connected to relations and responsibility Cancer – The Moon (A crustacean crawls up from the water on the card) The Moon represents dreams and wishes Leo – Strength (a lady is wrestling with a lion on the card) Strength is about mastering obstacles and face the difficulties in life. Virgo – The high Priestess (Represent the female power) Stands for intuition and psychic abilities Libra – Adjustment (The card has a picture of a scale Adjustment is about knowing right from wrong, moral and ethics Scorpio – Death (A scorpion is lethal) The Death is connected with changes and to end something, to be able to start something new Sagittarius – The Fool (The Fool carries a cane over his shoulder – the cane looks like an arrow) The Fool is curious and spontaneous. Capricorn – The Devil (because of the goat horn) The devil is ambivalent and fickle, even so a lot of humour Aquarius – The Star (The lady pouring water from a lake) The Star represents hope and inspiration Pisces – Temperance (The sign looks like a half filled cup or a sand glass with equal parts) Temperance is about balance and compromises The symbolic meaning The idea of connect the look of the symbol with an aspect makes that tool very easy to remember. As with the NLP/MBTI the aspects are very general and hard to question. For
this reason it is a good choice to use the symbols in the first part of the reading. Most people will agree on some level to the statements. Aries – Love Most people consider themselves loving and love is the aspect that motivates most people. Taurus – Strong and stubborn Most people can be strong when needed, and most people consider themselves stubborn Gemini – Number 2 Cooperation Life is about interacting and cooperate with others, family, friends and work. Cancer – Number 6 and 9 Relations and Humanity Relations between lovers and friends, and understanding for other people’s situation. Leo – A key hole The ability to solve problems both mentally and physically, Also in relation to others, as a good listener Virgo – Maiden Innocent We are all gullible sometimes and perhaps easy seduced by something that sounds fair. Libra – Ohm resistance Most people are afraid for new and crazy ideas or perhaps questioning the reason or the way Scorpio – M – Mc Donald’s - Food Food is a major part of everyone’s life, something that everyone appreciate, especially when it is made with love. Sagittarius – Arrow – Point to a goal Most people consider themselves goal minded, at least if they are setting up the goals Capricorn – The symbol looks like a stick man that reaches out his arm Most people are willing to help and give to others that are in vain or in need of a helping hand. Aquarius – Zig Zag pattern – ups and downs The life is filled with ups and downs, and most people feel that they are stronger after they have gone through a hard time in life. Pisces – Time glass, time is running Most people will say that they catch the moment and live in the present. Most people also think that other doesn’t, that they don’t take the possibility that was laying in front of them.
NLP & MBTI Kenton Knepper and (FIND SPELLING FOR WONDER WORDS CO CREATOR) was the first that included NLP as a tool for the magician. And for sure, the linguistic aspect of NLP is brilliant and it is very well covered in Kentons Wonder Words series and in the brilliant reading system Wonder readings. I also recommend Introducing NLP by Joseph O’Connor and John Seymour to get a good knowledge of the meta programs. Even so, I think that NLP sometimes are hyped, and that we in fact not use NLP, but instead use it as an explanation for layme. Anchoring for instance, is a process that takes at least 40 minutes and need to be repeated over and over again – but it is a nice explanation for an effect where we are supposed to implant a specific behaviour. But in a reading there is something really good within the NLP system – the Meta programs. They are constructed to categorize people, which often are used by sales people to understand the customer. The seller use the information to choose the right sales strategy. The MBTI system is also a system for categorizing, which often are used to find the right person for the job. The 16 different profiles like ENTP or ISFJ represents different types of persona. In my Zodiac system I use mainly the meta programs or the MBTI aspect to briefly give a character analysis. Often the statement are spot on, because we all have part of the aspects. For more information about the meta program or the MBTI system, there is loads of information available on the Internet.
Focus on others
A person that want to listen and understand people around them, they are often caring and want to make sure that everyone is pleased in the situation. Focus on self A person that mainly talks about himself, and often forget to NLP incorporate others in the dialogue, which mainly turn it into a monologue. Match Trying to understand the world by comparing and finding NLP sameness to own experiences. Miss-match Trying to understand the world by seeing how things don’t fit NLP in and how things are different from the own experiences. Positive/negative How to react on information, situations and obstacles. Is the NLP glass half full or half empty Sensing Understand the world with the five senses, what can be seen, MBTI heard, touched etc. INtuition (The N) An intuitive person understand the world based on what they understand in between the lines Thinking Judge and decide with the mind – logical thinker MBTI Feeling Judge and decide with the heart – emotional decision maker MBTI Judging Relate to the world in terms of what you are allowed to do and MBTI not allowed to do. A judger like rules Perceiving Relate to the world based on the situation and to get the best MBTI result. A perceiver hate rules
Walk away – walk towards NLP Introvert MBTI Extrovert MBTI Proactive Reactive NLP
How people approach something. Walk towards focus on what they want to do or what they will achieve. Walk away focus on what they will stay away from and avoid. Focus on the inner world – a thinker that thinks to be able to talk. Load their battery alone or with a special friend. Often a few close friends Focus on the outer world – Often acting out and talk to be able to think. Load their battery together with other people. Often lots of friends and relations. A proactive person lays ahead of everything and try new ideas early. A reactive person waits until the idea have been tested, they don’t take the first hit.
The Astrological meaning When I started to give psychic readings I didn’t know so much about the traditional systems like palm reading, numerology, tarot or astrology. I manly relied on cold reading and character analyses. The problem I then had, was to structure the reading. I was able to reveal cool bits of information, but I didn’t know where to start, what to talk about and how to end. It was first when I studied the traditional systems that I understand that this problem already was solved. In the traditional reading system there is already a structure. In a palm reading the shape of the hand and the fingers gives the character analyses, the major lines gives the important parts of the reading and the mounts and minor lines gives details. In the Tarot it works in the same way, as described earlier. It is the same with astrology. There is a reason why you don’t need to be skilled as a cold reader to write a horoscope. In the system, there is already the parts that are needed, situations that most people will recognize or aspects that rely to their personal situation. The general meaning for the star signs can be used in that way, they also make a great option for predicting the future. You have twelve aspects of a person’s life, which most likely will become reality, because most of them are already a part of their reality.
Aries – The unique self
Taurus – Economy and money
Self-achievement and growing as a person, education and new perspectives are parts of every person’s life. You can safely say that in a future, like in three to five month you will grow as a person and gain new experience. When you look back to this day you will realize which amazing journey you have done. In all aspects of life, money and economy is important. Predictions like:
I can see that a new opportunity opens up for you, this might even become lucrative even that this also means that you need to put your effort into this.
Gemini – Communication Cancer - Care for the family Leo – Love and children Virgo – Health and fitness
Libra – Partnership and relations Scorpio – End of something Sagittarius – Travel and new ideas Capricorn – Career
Aquarius – Friendship Pisces – Conflicting interests
Avoid speculative predictions about easy money, you don’t want people to spend money on lottery. But if they win, your prediction will be remembered as a very accurate prediction. Developing skill in communication is also a safe prediction. Most people have persons that they communicate easy with, and of course the opposite as well. A good prediction is that she will learn how to communicate more effective and also how to be understood. This is a good one. Most people have tight bonds with their family, and if they don’t they surely would like to have. You will tighten the bonds with some person that are close to you, a family member that will play a larger part in your life. Passion and unconditional love for someone is a dream that most people have sometimes in their life. This can be connected to a child, a relative or perhaps a lover. Health is one of the main questions in a reading but avoid predictions about physic health and sickness. Always lay focus on activity and lifestyle. You will start a new habit, and take more care of yourself, perhaps start with a new activity. A prediction of a relation that expand is likely to be true. It could be with a lover, in a friendship or with a new person. Finally end a nasty habit such as smoking, swearing, drinking, interrupting or perhaps end an inactive lifestyle, is something most people wish for, and also do. If you think that the spectator is a smoker, this one is a good one to pull off. The world expands and it is safe to say that the spectator will travel and make a journey in the future, perhaps to another country. Most people will change their career, be promoted, become selfemployed or in some way change the working situation. For that reason it is safe to say that something will change, even if it is about a raise of the salary or perhaps even more appreciated by the co-workers. Friendship always evolve in some way. Perhaps with tighter bands with old friends or letting new one in. What do you see when you look at old friends with new eyes perhaps you see something that you missed earlier. We all feel that time sometime rush away, and that we don’t have time for all the things we want. This situation will be recognizable for everyone and it is safe to say that the spectator will find a solution to the life puzzle, how to fit the pieces in place, even if this also means that she will get new ideas that compete with her time.
There you have the system. There is no need to learn everything but read and look at the compilation of the aspects. I’m sure that you in just 30 minutes study will have enough ideas for giving a brief reading. The system doesn’t rely on reactions and feedback from your spectator, instead you can give the reading even if someone are sceptical and doesn’t say anything. This also helps you in practice. You can give readings to the air, just decide the three star signs and tell a story. For each time you do, you become more and more secure.
End of the routine After the first two readings based of the present and the subconscious, you divine the star sign with the pendulum. I hold the pendulum over the billet in the centre of the Zodiac. In that way I try to make it look like the pendulum in some way get in touch with the information in the billet. This part of acting answer the question why she needed to write down the date. I then let the pendulum start to move and then I move it over the other signs with no reaction. When I place the pendulum over the spectators star sign I give movement to the pendulum, saying that I assume that this is their star sign. When this has been confirmed I turn over the pad and show the prediction, which gives me some psychic powers as well. I then give the ending reading which focus on the future. Finally I reveal the date, as a part of the future prediction. The cool things with predictions is that it is the things that are accurate that tend to be remembered. So in this reading you will hit, then it is very likely that you also will hit on the other parts. In the first routine where the participant choose Aquarius, Virgo and Capricorn, the prediction say that she will be helping her friends and that it might be some changes in her working situation. It is likely to happen and then you will get the credit for that.
THE VCR ZODIAC SIGN TEST - Dale A. Hildebrandt A Zodiac Sign Reveal where nothing has to be spoken by the participant, and it doesn’t involve anagrams of any sort. VCR in this case stands for “Very Clear Response”. You’re going to be using pulse reading combined with unconscious finger signals in order to pull off an interesting feat The beauty of this routine is that a word never has to be spoken by the participant and there are no anagrams (progressive, verbal, or non-verbal) at all. Pulse reading is a bit like muscle reading. In fact, it is a branch of muscle reading or contact mind reading. Finger signals are a tool used in suggestion, hypnosis, and Neurolinguistic Programming, to directly communicate with the unconscious. Basically, you are going to set up a system of ideomotor responses in the participant and using those responses you are going to tell them what their Zodiac sign happens to be. First, you will have to set up finger signals with the participant. Two good resources for this are “Trance-Formations” by Richard Bandler and John Grinder and “Time For A Change” by Richard Bandler. This routine works best with someone who is already deeply familiar with all the Zodiac Signs, otherwise you will have to provide lists for the participant. There are at least two reasons this works better with those familiar with the Zodiac Signs. Those who are familiar will be able to easily split up the groups of signs, which will become important in a moment. The second reason is that those who are familiar with all the Zodiac Signs and know them by heart, in my experience, tend to be more open to new or “new age” experiences and are a bit more suggestible. This is not to say that all people who are familiar with the signs are easily suggestible; just to say that there is a higher chance of these people cooperating with the procedures in my own personal experience. Depending on your level of skill (and comfort with various techniques), you can induce the finger signal using covert (or even overt) communication with the unconscious, or you can give a formal hypnotic induction to the participant. I prefer using direct communication with the unconscious mind and working with it to set up the finger signals while the participant remains fully aware. I simply ask the spectator to hold out both hands at chest level, while the spectator is seated. I then ask them to close both of their hands into fists, and then point out both their index fingers. I then set up the finger signaling by first saying “I am going to talk to your unconscious now as both of you listen. Raise your right finger if you agree to cooperate.” If the right finger raises, I know I have compliance and can proceed with the rest of the routine. If there is no finger being raised, I know to go back and try a different approach. There are many ways to approach this, but the way I have described is one of the easiest. If you do not get compliance, and you do not want to try again with that subject, you can always pick a different volunteer. It is important that you choose a cooperative subject. You may want to run some compliance tests before attempting the Zodiac sign revelation part of this routine. With that said, let’s get to the routine.
You will first have them split the Zodiac Signs into two groups of six. Below you will find the two lists: LIST ONE:
Instruct the spectator to have their right finger go up if their sign is in the list of the first six and the left finger to go up if their sign is in the second list of six, while telling them to concentrate on the group of six that contains their sign. Whichever finger goes up, you have then narrowed the choices down to six. Tell them to imagine the six left in the order above, and again have their right finger go up if their sign is one through three and their left finger go up if it is four through six. You have now narrowed it down to three signs. Since three divided by two is 1.5, we don’t want to split this final group into two. Instead, at this point, we will use some pulse reading. Tell them to imagine sending a beam of white energy to their right finger, but only when you mention their Zodiac sign. They never have to say a word. In fact, you should explain to them that they should try not to send any verbal or nonverbal signals except for the white beam of light being sent during the mentioning of their personal Zodiac Sign. You will hold their right finger, and you will be able to sense through pulse reading when they are sending their sign. You simply say one of the three signs left and notice if their finger’s pulse reacts differently. Do this action a few times to gauge the response, and then you will be able to figure out their Zodiac Sign. In very basic terms, you will feel a difference in the pulse of the finger when the spectator visualizes sending a white beam of light to that finger. I stress yet again that you want a volunteer that will be cooperative and open to the suggestions you give. The finger’s pulse will change in an almost dramatic way when they visualize the energy being sent to it. This was inspired by the progressive anagram works of Alain Nu and Bob Farmer, “Dream Signs” by Daniel Love, and the Neurolinguistic Programming works of Richard Bandler and John Grinder.
BIRTHDATED - Dale A. Hildebrandt EFFECT: The mentalist guesses the birth month of a participant, within two months. This is accomplished with nothing more than a pen and a piece of paper. Both the pen and the paper may be borrowed.
METHOD: This is a combination of an old carnival technique known as the “J-Line Technique” and a concept that was first introduced to me in my reading of Martin Gardner’s work. The Gardner concept was for a trick that I now refer to as “Paris, No London”. In the Gardner effect, you ask someone to name a large European city. This is best done in the United States and with someone who has not traveled a whole lot in their lives. You have two predictions, one which acts as a sort of “out”. You write down the word “Paris” and then cross a line through it and write “London”. If the participant chooses London, you say “It’s a good thing I didn’t go with my first guess. Was someone here thinking of Paris?” If you have the right crowd in front of you, this question will allow you to get a second hit. If they say “Paris”, you say “I should have gone with my first instinct. I think there may have been some interference though. Was somebody thinking of London?” The “J-Line Technique” is a way of writing out the month so that it can be read as either: January, July, or June. Combine this with the “Paris, No London” principle by first writing “OCT” and crossing it out. If you do the math, you will find that January, July, and June cover every month within two months EXCEPT for October. If they choose October, you simply say “I was thinking of January, but I should have gone with my first guess.” Below is a graphic that shows how to write the J-Line for the “J-Line Technique”, along with a crossed out OCT for October. It is important when revealing the J-Line to say beforehand what month the J-Line stands for, thus gaining acceptance, as well as compliance, from the participant. YOU must interpret your scribbling as the appropriate month; otherwise they may interpret it as the wrong month. Remember, you are the one who has the authority here, and so you must demonstrate this authority to the full extent. Note: The “J-Line” technique is rarely used by carnival month guessers any longer, as the simple way to do things now is to offer “slum” prizes and charge more than what the prize is worth. Some have accused the carnival workers of using nailwriters, but this would prove to be simply ridiculous, because the easiest route is to offer slum prizes for the contestants.
Purloined letters - Pat Schlagel Effect "Hey, you do readings? Do me!" After a mysterious bout of coughing, you tell them that you need to find out how they think before you can give them an accurate reading. "Lets try a couple of things and see how it goes." "Please think of your sign, see it letter by letter written across the air, right here." "Hmm, pretty hazy, first impression… It may be a round letter. An O or a C." "Am I even close?" Spectator: "Well, there is an O but no C." "OK, it’s a start, This isn't as clear, maybe an E? Spectator: "No" (Now we know the Sign) (Purloined Letters)
Breakdown on "Purloined Letters" This is a branching anagram possibly leading to a progressive anagram method. You tell them you see two similar shapes, it's either an O or a C. If they have an O, but no C in their word, they are thinking of Leo or Virgo. Fish the E to find out which it is. If they have a C but no O in their word, they are thinking or Cancer or Pisces. Fish for the I to find out which it is. If they have an O and a C in their word, they are thinking of Scorpio or Capricorn. Fish for the A to find out which it is. So, half the signs are covered in what appears to be two questions. But what if they have neither O nor C in their word? Then we go to the progressive anagram method as mapped out below. " It's not O? Hmm, lets try something else. How are you visualizing the letters Black letters on a white background?" What ever they say, change what they are doing so you can try again. "Don't say anything unless I miss a letter." I see an.. A I S Spectator says No, that’s not right. Accept it and go on. "That’s ok, it gives me some insight into how you think which is what we were after." (But now you know their sign and will reveal it later) Continue from "(Now we know the Sign) (Purloined Letters)" above. The progressive anagram sequence is as follows. If they say nothing, then you are correct and move down the list. When they say you got a letter wrong, it is the sign to the right of the missed letter. A---- Gemini I----- Taurus S---- Libra U---- Aries T---- Aquarius Sagittarius
Stolen stars – Luca Volpe Effect The performer has three participants write their astrological signs down on pieces of card. The participants mix the cards face down so no one knows the order. The performer explains that he is going to flip the top card over and that the participants are not to react - It is essential that no one tips off the performer as to whom the card belongs to. The performer flips the card over and instantly starts to read the person he feels the sign belongs to and then finishes by identifying who the zodiac sign belongs to. The second card is flipped over and again the performer reads accurately and identifies the person whom the card belongs to. He then by default knows whom the last card belongs to and makes a point of not turning the card over. The performer starts to read the participant instead, he then calls out what zodiac sign he believes the participant to be. The performer turns the card over and it matches the exact sign the performer just called out!
Breakdown If it wasn’t clear from the description, this is my take on sneak thief. I think this premise is more logical when using astrology signs, it totally makes more sense to be reading someone based on their astrology sign and the way that they wrote their sign than it does to read a picture or random word. The subtleties are where the real gold is within this routine. First let me outline quickly for the people that don't know the mechanics of this routine - For the people that know Larry Becker's 'Sneak thief' the mechanics are very much similar First take each piece of card (the number of cards depends solely on the number of participants) and put a marking upon each card. In my experience marking them in a sequential way is always the best. So for example if you are restricted to marking them in one spot on the card for example (as it is your business card) you might take a series of coloured sharpies and in the telephone number where the number '0' is or a number similar to this I place a dot that is large enough to see inside the number... But I follow the nursery rhyme 'The
Rainbow song' - Red and Yellow and Pink (So on if there is more participants/ cards). The reason being is on stage, I need to quickly identify without the worry of forgetting which is the first second and third card. It needs to be instantly identifiable and a mnemonic like that is simple and ensures I won't forget. I stack the cards in sequential order, this ensures the first card goes to the first participant, the second the second participant and the third the third (So on and so forth of there is more participants). Now I know when I get the pieces of card back, even when they mix them up which card belongs to which person. That's the main part of the method. We must secretly obtain the star sign written on the third card - This is done in the most beautiful of ways. Take the stack of cards back after they have been mixed, explain that you are going to flip the top card over and then study the graphology (the writing) and then give a reading and state who you feel the card belongs to. Look at the marking whilst saying "who the card belongs to". It's a moment that is logical to look down at the card. Before you have turned the card over you know who the card belongs to. You flip over the top card and read the sign out loud. Start to call out the typical characteristics and traits belonging to that sign, then point to a loop of writing on the card saying "this loop is Interesting". As you say that you lift forward the entire stack of cards to the audience (or people you are performing for) just briefly whilst pointing to the loop - THIS IS THE MOMENT YOU LOOK AT THE CARD ON THE BOTTOM OF THE STACK! You will now know the last star sign commit it to memory - I personally like to get rid of the cards at this point. If I'm at a table I casually drop them into the table continuing the reading. Then finish by saying - "I think this card belongs to you, right?" This is where I pick up the one card and hand it to the participant as a Souvenir and they return to their seat (in a stage context). Some people worry about leaving the cards with the participant, this is something I've never worried about. If there is no table then hold the cards flat and ensure you make an effort to display the cards at all times as flat.
The method is over. You know who the next card belongs to by looking at the marking. You flip over that card and read that person finishing by handing the participant their card. This leaves one card - say, Performer: "It doesn't take a genius to work out who this card belongs to, so instead of reading the card to find out things about you - I am going to read you to find out what's on the card." This is where you give the reading for the star sign you have committed to memory, then finish by revealing that persons sign! This routine is simple and makes logical sense. It is sure fire and the reactions are always amazing.
Seeing Signs - Fraser Parker with additional subtleties from Peter Turner I have kept the following write up and subsequent explanation very brief and purposefully simple – to reflect the simplicity of the method which follows. The reason this method appears very simplistic outwardly, is because both myself and my good friend Peter Turner have worked hard at slowly and carefully refining it, so that it is now the best it can be [at the time of writing within the context of the tools currently available to us]. What was important to us was that everything from a method point of view was justified in the context of the performance and fitted with the premise – that of the performer reading the aura and general characteristics and traits of the person sat in front of them to be able to accurately divine their exact star sign. It is the outward appearance of the effect itself which fools those who watch our performance and take part. We shouldn't at any point seem to be performing a trick, if we do then the effect will fall flat before we have even begun and the effect will appear transparent. If however, we perform the effect in a way that is credible – as if we are really doing what we claim to be doing – then it won't matter whether there is a trick to what we are doing or not, as it will not be looked for. What we are doing will seem credible and the audience members will therefore follow the logic of the effect and not of the method underlying the performance. At the very least, we will be doing what we are claiming to be doing, throughout the performance of the routine. I have searched for the perfect star sign divination for years and have read many of the plots currently in print but found I was always slightly dissatisfied with what I read.
Each of these solutions seemed to either have too much of a process or a process which didn't make much sense within the context of a star sign divination, for example – why would you use something as impersonal as letters from a sign using the classic anagram method when dealing with a reveal of something as personal as a star sign which is inherently related to personal characteristics and traits of your spectator and therefore, intrinsically linked to their life – from both a theatrical point of view and in terms of the aesthetic of the effect? I feel the honest answer to this question, is that you wouldn't when given the chance to perform without any artistic restrictions and the fact we often resort to anagramming is due to time constraints. It is often much quicker and sure fire compared to other more drawn out, less sure fire methods. Very few people can pull off these anagramming processes convincingly whilst simultaneously keeping the process interesting but do not let that stop you learning the anagram and subtleties as I have found that sometimes when I am in a situation wherein I don’t have artistic liberty it is very useful – after all, it is one more tool in your arsenal. It is better to know more than it is to know less. There were a few things that I looked for when creating this system. I first took apart the things that I disliked about the anagram – one being that it doesn't make sense aesthetically for you to deal with information of this nature in such a cold and analytical way. That is something that I wanted to change and it got me thinking: Would it not be more logical to deal with star sign divinations in terms of getting a 'feel' for the sitter's characteristics and traits and relating the reveal directly to their own life and personality? Could I take a classic of Mentalism that is heavy in terms of the props it uses – namely the 'Horrors!' plot by Stuart Robson from Annemann's 'Practical Mental Effects' – and update it, so that it became an entirely verbal presentation. The answer to both of these questions was 'yes'. I am not claiming what follows is the perfect solution or the only way a star sign divination should be performed but I do feel it is a step in the right direction, in terms of how I personally believe a star sign reveal should look and more importantly 'feel' to an audience. I suggest you familiarize yourself with the aforementioned classic of Mentalism before reading any further. It can be found on Page 109 of the Holden edition of 'Practical Mental Effects' by Annemann. The effect and method for 'Horrors!' put in simplistic terms, is as follows. 4 or 5 index cards with lists of items printed on their faces are placed in front of a spectator and they are instructed to pick up each of the cards containing their thought of item and focus on that item. Certain list items are repeated within each of the lists on each of the cards.
These cards are either secretly marked on their backs or overtly marked with different color backs. Each card represents a different number in a binary system. The performer takes note of which cards are picked up by the spectator and secretly totals each of the numbers each card represents. This gives them a total and this number secretly cues the performer into which one of the list items the spectator is thinking of. I went back to my notebooks and my notes on this effect and tried to once again iron out what had made performing this effect prop-less a problem in the past and this is when I had the following break through. What if I used the colors from the classic method as a way of mentally labelling each of the cards? I had already decided to verbalize each of the list items on each of the cards within different groups – to do away with the need for the use of cards – I just needed a way of knowing which of the groups of different list items their thought of item appeared in. I realized that if I got the spectator to listen out for their list item and to focus on a specific color depending on which of the groups it fell into – it would be possible to know which 'cards' they had 'picked up' mentally. This would be achieved by using the three primary colors: red, blue and yellow for each of the groups and having the spectator mix two colors together mentally, whenever they are focusing on more than one color/ group and their thought of item therefore, appears in more than one of the list groups. They would therefore, be focusing on either the secondary colors: orange, purple and green, if they mixed two colors together or they would be focusing on one of the primary colors, if they stayed consistent to one color. What is so nice about this is whatever color the spectator is left focusing on instantly cues you into which groups their thought of item appeared in and therefore, which item they are thinking of – for example, if they are left focusing on the color orange you now know that they must have mixed the two primary colors red and yellow together to make orange and their thought of item appeared in the list groups associated with these colors. This will become much clearer as we move on and begin to apply this method to the star sign divination, itself. I just wanted to give you an overview of the basic principle before moving into the scripting, of which makes this entire method deceptive.
Full Performance Script Performer: “Have you ever heard the expression ‘when worlds collide’?”
Participant: “I have”. Performer: “I believe there is something so interesting about that statement. The idea of a hurricane of everything belonging to two people smashing together with such force, that when the dust settles you see the beauty that has been created by the storm. You see, I feel the universe operates in a way that is so mysterious that we cannot begin to comprehend it logically. We only have to stop for a moment and truly look to realize there are forces that completely affect the way that we act and think. Take for example the solar system. A vast ocean of stars and planets that are thousands upon thousands of miles away, yet close enough to play a big part in our everyday lives right here and now. I want to share with you something that the universe has gifted to me. I would like you to think of your star sign. I only have to get in tune with your aura to lead me to the way that you act and the way that you act will lead me to the star you were born under”. Participant: “I am thinking of it”. Performer: “Focus on the month in which you were born, whether it is in the first half of the year or the second half. Obviously if the month is numbered 1-6 it's the first half of the year, 7-12 second half”. Participant: “Okay”. Performer: “Generally the way I pick up on someone's aura is via feeling specific colors associated with their characteristics. Right now you have no clue what colors are associated with the star you were born under. I will explain which colors are associated with each of the signs in a moment. My aura for example is bright blue. What is really interesting for me, the feeling I am getting right now is... (The performer pauses for a second or two and continues) I instantly feel that at the time of your birth there was what’s known as a tailing star close to your birth star which indicates that there will be characteristics and traits tied over from that other star. I will always make sure I am on the right path when giving you a reading as I honestly feel at times I will be doubting myself as I have only ever found myself in a situation like this once before where there were traits tied over from another star. You weren’t born in the first half of the year were you?” Participant: “I was”. She says this whilst smiling. Performer: “I thought as much. Let me name the star signs and which colors are usually associated with them. Some of the signs you might hear me repeat more than once, the reason for this is that those are the signs which are tied between two seasons. For example Virgo can be classed as a Summer or Autumn Month depending on the person I am reading, it's a sign that is tied over two Seasons.
If you hear your star sign remember the color it is associated with, if you hear your sign more than once it means it is tied to more than one color. Then what I want you to do is take the two colors and imagine mixing them together to make a new color”. Participant: “Okay, I understand”. Performer: “Aquarius, Gemini and Aries are usually associated with the color red. Aries, Pisces and Cancer are associated with the color blue and Cancer, Taurus and Gemini are associated with the color yellow. The other signs are irrelevant but are obviously associated with a different hue of colors. You are either now thinking of one solid color or a color that is derived from two other colors. Did you keep one color consistently in your mind or did you mix them?” Participant: “I stayed with a consistent color”. Performer: “Okay, perfect and just before I get ahead of myself, you’re not coincidentally the same color aura as me?” Participant: “No”. Performer: “We are ready to begin, I feel with you that you are headstrong, outgoing, you believe actions speak louder than words, these are definitely traits associated with a power sign”. The performer suddenly stops giving the reading. Performer: “I was sure when I met you that you were an Aries… I am really glad that when I got into the process of reading you that I totally trusted my instincts to change the sign... you are an Aquarius, correct? Participant: “Fuck! How did you know that?” Performer: “I just ran with my feelings”. Hopefully after reading the full performance script some of you will already be ahead of me. I will now break down the script and explain each section of the script separately, so that you can better follow what is going on. The first piece of scripting acts as a beautiful lead in to the effect as well as sets up the premise of the effect. Performer: “Have you ever heard the expression ‘when worlds collide’?” Participant: “I have”. Performer: “I believe there is something so interesting about that statement. The idea of a hurricane of everything belonging to two people smashing together with such force, that when the dust settles you see the beauty that has been created by the storm. You see, I feel the universe operates in a way that is so mysterious that we cannot begin to comprehend it logically. We only have to stop for a moment and truly look to realize there are forces that completely affect the way that we act and think.
Take for example the solar system. A vast ocean of stars and planets that are thousands upon thousands of miles away, yet close enough to play a big part in our everyday lives right here and now. I want to share with you something that the universe has gifted to me. I would like you to think of your star sign. I only have to get in tune with your aura to lead me to the way that you act and the way that you act will lead me to the star you were born under”. Participant: “I am thinking of it”. The scripting in bold creates the frame work for this method as well as creates the overall aesthetic for the effect, which ensures what we say and do makes sense from a theatrical point of view and that the effect is therefore fooling and will not simply be perceived as a trick. They will now be thinking of their star sign. We now have to work out which half of the year the spectator was born in. The way we do this is with the use of a closed question combined with a clever piece of scripting which will give us the perfect excuse as to why we will sometimes appear unsure of our impressions and have to ask for confirmation that we are on the right lines when reading the spectator. Performer: “Focus on the month in which you were born, whether it is in the first half of the year or the second half. Obviously if the month is numbered 1-6 it's the first half of the year, 7-12 second half”. Participant: “Okay”. The numbering of Months in the scripting is important because the spectator will be able to more easily follow along and accurately gauge if they were born in the first half or the second half of the year. We often write our birth date in a numerical form, so they should already know what number represents the Month they were born. Performer: “Generally the way I pick up on someone's aura is via feeling specific colors associated with their characteristics. Right now you have no clue what colors are associated with the star you were born under. I will explain which colors are associated with each of the signs in a moment. My aura for example is bright blue.” The line of scripting in bold above, will become very important in terms of method, in a moment. Performer: “What is really interesting for me, the feeling I am getting right now is... (The performer pauses for a second or two and continues) I instantly feel that at the time of your birth there was what’s known as a tailing star close to your birth star which indicates that there will be characteristics and traits tied over from that other star. I will always make sure I am on the right path when giving you a reading as I
honestly feel at times I will be doubting myself as I have only ever found myself in a situation like this once before where there were traits tied over from another star. You weren’t born in the first half of the year were you?” What the scripting in bold does is offers an excuse as to why you are going to essentially ask questions to confirm the accuracy of your impressions, throughout the routine. It seems the reason you ask is so that you can check you are not being thrown off by the trailing star or the fact the spectator will have characteristics and traits tied over from another star. This makes the performance appear very natural and not like a trick, at all – all of the linguistic ruses fit with how this would look, if you were doing this for real and could genuinely read people. Note: We are essentially asking for information as we go in order to know their thought of color and therefore be able to accurately divine their sign. This is completely fine, from an audience's perspective providing we do not present what we are doing as a trick. A psychic would after all, simply ask for the sign up front before giving a reading and still be perceived as genuine. It is the reading that the spectator finds the most interesting. We are effectively, doing the same as a real psychic reader, the only difference being that we give ourselves the chance to create the appearance of mind reading off the back of the performance itself and the way it is structured, with the use of closed questions etc. We don't ask questions in the standard form but instead use what is called a closed question in order to make it appear we know what the answer to the question is, all along. The way we do this is by asking the spectator the question in the form of a negative statement. This way if we get a 'no' response we can simply claim that we knew this was the case. If we get a 'yes' then it will still appear we were picking up on this. Participant: “I was”. She says this whilst smiling. Now, it logically follows that they could be born in one half of the year whilst still displaying characteristics of a sign from the opposite half of the year. This gives us the perfect out. Performer: “You weren’t born in the first half of the year were you?” If we get a 'no' response we can simply continue the script with the following words, as if we always meant to complete our statement in this way. Performer: “I didn’t feel as much, as your aura is more tranquil and loyal”. As you can see this is great within itself. The reason it is so clever is that the way the question is phrased allows the participant to give you the answer whilst feeling that you picked up on it. By finishing with two complimentary traits – the participant will not want to deny belongs to them – they sign into an agreement with what you are
saying subconsciously and will therefore, when accepting the traits, also accept that you knew which half of the year they were born within. We now know which half of the year the spectator was born in and therefore, which star signs we will be dealing with. Now we can continue with our script. Performer: “Let me name the star signs and which colors are usually associated with them. Some of the signs you might hear me repeat more than once, the reason for this is that those are the signs which are tied between two seasons. For example Virgo can be classed as a Summer or Autumn Month depending on the person I am reading, it's a sign that is tied over two Seasons.” This scripting gives us the perfect justification for having to repeat specific signs, as dictated by the method. Not only does it provide an excuse for this necessary compromise of effect, it now actually complements and fits perfectly with the overall aesthetic and premise of the routine. Performer: “If you hear your star sign remember the color it is associated with, if you hear your sign more than once it means it is tied to more than one color. Then what I want you to do is take the two colors and imagine mixing them together to make a new color”. Participant: “Okay, I understand”. Performer: “Aquarius, Gemini and Aries are usually associated with the color red. Aries, Pisces and Cancer are associated with the color blue and Cancer, Taurus and Gemini are associated with the color yellow. The other signs are irrelevant but are obviously associated with a different hue of colors.” Naturally, we are dealing with the signs from the first half of the year in our example. If we find out the spectator is born in the second half of the year then we would simply exchange these signs for those that appear in the second half of the year. I will continue with the explanation as if we are performing with star signs within the first half of the year. Here is the crib for the signs which fall in the first half of the year. 1
RED Aquarius, Gemini, Aries
2 BLUE Aries, Pisces, Cancer 4 YELLOW Cancer, Taurus, Gemini I have left the number associations as used with the original method, to show how this works, logically. As you can see, whichever sign the spectator is focusing on will either give them one color or two colors, of which they will mix together to create a secondary color and whatever color they end up focusing on will cue you to the correct sign. Simply add the numbers associated with each color together (e.g. Orange = Red + Yellow. 1+4 = 5. The 5th sign of the Zodiac (Aquarius being 1) is Gemini. No mnemonics are therefore necessary, as the system is fully logical. If you don't want to apply the numeric method then all you have to do is remember the crib of color associations to work out which star sign the spectator is focusing on from whatever color they are thinking of. Now all that is left to do is: obtain their thought of color. This was the hardest piece of the puzzle to crack and it took a few late night sessions on Skype with Peter Turner before all of the pieces of the jigsaw finally fell into place, perfectly! I would like to thank Peter for his help with this effect and his addition of a few of the brilliant subtleties that without which this effect would not be as tight as it is. The first thing Peter added was his naming of his own aura color early on in the script. There is a very good reason why this is the color light blue. Not only is the color made more memorable to the spectator by the fact we qualify it as a lighter shade of blue and therefore, make it stand out – it also allows us to narrow down on which color out of three colors the spectator is focusing on. In the example provided in the script, the spectator will now be focusing on either of the colors: red, blue or yellow. This is where we use OUR OWN AURA to get the participant down to either one or a choice between two signs. Performer: “Okay, perfect and just before I get ahead of myself, your aura’s color is not coincidentally the same as mine?” If the participant says 'yes, it is the same' then you are down to one sign – the sign relating to your aura's color: blue. If they respond with a 'no' then it has to either be the sign associated with the color red or the color blue – respectively. We would then go into a personality reading and reveal their star sign using the TWO WAY verbal reductive OUT from Peter Turner (Taught below).
Performer: “Now we are ready to start, I feel with you that you are headstrong, outgoing, you believe actions speak louder than words, these are definitely traits associated with a power sign”.
TWO WAY verbal reductive OUT from Peter Turner This reductive out is always used at the end of the process – after, we have given a reading to the spectator – whenever we are down to two possible colors and therefore, two possible star signs. Note: I feel that giving readings and how each of us approaches readings, is something very personal to the performer and I am therefore, not going to give you any example scripts as I feel ultimately this should be left to each individual performer to work out what works best for themselves. [The reason for giving a reading is to bolster the effect. It is personal in nature and is often the thing most remembered by the spectator. The naming of the star sign is just the cherry on the pie! It also acts as time missdirection which helps the method and reveal become disconnected in the minds of the spectator and those watching]. The scripting is as follows: Performer: “When I sat down I instantly got the feeling you were a SAY OUT LOUD THE OTHER SIGN”. This is where you will pause for a second (if you get a reaction great) if not continue, “I then felt the better of this, and chased my own instincts and committed to my thoughts. I feel you are a NAME THE SIGN”.
If the participant has mixed the colors they will be thinking of purple, green or orange. Now when we apply the previous query as to whether their thought of color is related to our own aura color – two out of three times the participant will have used blue – due to the fact, green and purple BOTH contain the color blue. What is nice about this is most of the time you will be correct. I don’t ask the participant if they have used blue, I frame it as this – Performer: “I feel that we share specific characteristics and traits, you didn’t utilize blue as one of the colors in your mix did you?” If the participant says 'no' you instantly know the color was orange and instantly know the star sign but I always follow up with – Performer: “I feel that like me you are XX XX XX and this is very similar to my own characteristics”. Then proceed to read the spectator and finish with the reveal of the star sign. If however, they say 'yes' that they utilized blue, you then use the aforementioned reductive process, as you will again be down to two signs.
One line that is really cool is, when the spectator says, Spectator: “How did you know that?” Finish with: Performer: “You told me, without saying a word”. I always add on the last line in the script even though it is not entirely true as it helps cement the false memory of the spectator never having said anything out loud. Here is the crib for the signs contained in the second half of the year: * 1
Leo, Sagittarius, Libra
Libra, Virgo, Capricorn
4 YELLOW Capricorn, Scorpio, Sagittarius * It is simply a matter of switching between the two cribs depending on whether your spectator was born in the first half or the second half of the year. FIN –
NOTE TO THE READER *** The next effect that follows is a contribution from Christian Chelman, from ‘Capricornian tales’. I saw this effect live in Italy (Torino) and loved it. Christian didn’t have a word document version of this effect so what you are about to read is a scanned version of the original document. Full permission has been given to obtain and use a scanned version of this document – It is not to be reproduced and the rights to this effect are retained by Christian Chelman.
Zodiac – Christian Chelman
Additional notes – For those who are willing to translate!
Zodiac Plus – Additional idea Christian Chelman I created this zodiac routine at the end of 1970, since then this effect hasn’t stopped evolving. There have been two important things added to the original routine. First the deck of cards, the advanced version uses a deck of cards with sentences, on each card there’s a short sentence about each
horoscope or something about one of the elements or an inspiring quote. When I combined these elements, it made it possible to easily create a good horoscope reading. The second element I added is a little calendar notebook, each date has the name of a famous person who was born on that date. The spectator likes to know which famous public figure was born on the same date, especially when it is the likes of Moliére, Martin Luther king or Onassis.
Additional idea – Aaron Alexander - A Dash of Wonder In 1939, at the dawn of the Second World War, a man sent a letter to one of Himmler’s aides warning of a plot on the Fuhrer’s life that would take place between the 7th and 10th of November that year. The letter, which looked like a crank at the time, was ignored until after the 8th of November, when Hitler was nearly killed a bomb event celebrating the anniversary of his first grab at power. In the fallout of the assassination attempt, the writer of the warning letter was promptly arrested by the Gestapo and interrogated as to the source of his intelligence. The writer, Karl Ernst Krafft, promptly delivered his intelligence in the form of intricate astrological charts. Not only did he convince the Gestapo that this was the true origin of his prediction, he so impressed the German leadership that he was taken into the elite of the party for his strategic and political value. Accounts of how accurate Krafft really was will vary depending on who tells the story. But regardless of his possible value as a predictor, he was certainly not overlooked for his value as a propagandist: Soon the propaganda ministry employed Krafft to produce proNazi astrological charts and interpretations of Nostradamus that supported the rise of the Third Reich, which were delivered in pamphlets across Germany and its conquered territories. The British, aware of the Nazi’s resident astrologer, hired one of their own, Louis de Wohl, to even the odds. By many accounts de Wohl may have been a bit of a scoundrel who was more adept at promising than delivering, though that was likely no hindrance to his job as he too was soon put to use for his propagandistic potential rather than his premonitory powers. He eventually did a tour of the United States to make public appearances to speak of the conflict in Europe from a purportedly astrological perspective, with talking points that may have been more influenced by British Intelligence objectives than by the celestial bodies. Let us take a short break from this odd saga to put some perspective on it: If you use your thumb to count the sections on your fingers, you will find an easy way to count to 12 on each hand, or 24 on both. It is not so useful a trick today in a world with a near-universal base-ten counting system, but it would have been quite handy three thousand years ago to the people who were developing many of the astrological tools that Krafft and de Wohl were using. That is because it is the Babylonian counting system used by ancient astronomers and mathematicians to which we owe our 12-sign Zodiac. To be clear, we are talking about the most high-stakes and technologically advanced conflict that the world had ever seen, one that would see the introduction of radar, the atomic bomb, and the rockets that would later bring our species to the moon. And the members of the sophisticated intelligence establishments on both sides of this almost mythic struggle turned to a system so old that the very tilt of the planet has shifted since it was
developed, giving us a sky that no longer matches the 12-sign pattern that the Babylonians used. But, and this is key: They did so not because of its strategic accuracy, not because of its scientific validity, not in some pursuit of occult power that one might expect in an Indiana
Jones movie. Rather they did it because of the strange place that these peculiar ancient ideas of astrology still occupy in the popular imagination of the modern age. And in that light, the strategy actually makes a lot of sense. Everyone knows what astrology is, everyone knows what star signs are, and they carry a certain weight even though few people have any idea where they came from or how they were used in ages long past. Astrology has a sort of a mystical marquis value while still being in every newspaper that is still printed, even as the remaining few cut down on news, editorials, classifieds, and everything else. All sorts of normal, intelligent people read their horoscopes, some just as a meaningless diversion, some because they strongly relate to the daily star-based blurbs. And that is no accident—even the common criticism that horoscopes are made up of generalities that can easily apply to anyone speaks equally to the fact that we all share a more common story than we realize. And those are the same underlying features that I use to read minds using star signs. It was not based upon World War Two intelligence and propaganda operations, but it works for the same reasons, and it works extremely well. My own approach started with some very simple pieces, and snowballed into something quite wonderful. I have published that approach elsewhere and do not have the space to go into that entire ball of snow here, but will give in broad stroke the elements that come together to make something quite special. It is my hope that giving the ingredients of my own solution to star sign effects without the finished product will spark creativity and inspire methods that are just as good.
Ingredient One: The Associations Our first ingredient is a gift from the mind of Warren Thackeray, a South African mentalist who now makes New York his home. Warren saw that every sign has many astrological associations, including Greek Elements and Qualities, and that no sign shares both an element and a quality. That means that if we were to know the element associated with a person’s sign, for example, we know that it is one of three elements, if we know the element and the quality, we would know a person’s sign. This can be most easily visualized in a table: Fire
These associations have been around for centuries and using them as a way to work backwards to find a sign may have been thought of before, though I certainly have not heard of it. But Warren thought of it, and also saw an interesting application when he combined it with an idea that I had released in a book called Bridge. Without going into too much detail, “Bridge” is a tool that can be used to do many things, one of which is allowing a performer to know which finger a participant is thinking of while also burying that fact in a very unusual experience. By associating each finger
with an element and then a quality, the performer can feel through the fingers which quality and element the participant thought of, revealing the sign. It becomes a very interesting revelation within an already fascinating process that goes on with Bridge. This opens a lot of possibilities for finding a sign, especially with props or tools that someone can be used to narrow down the elements and qualities. In my case the goal was to have a process that was conversational and where the sign seems to come out of nowhere.
Ingredient Two: The Process Peter Turner gets a lot of credit for his Zodiac methods, and he is certainly the unrivaled expert on that front. But in terms of making sign divinations that really play strong, his biggest contribution may not have been a method but a process or even just an emphasis. When he performs, he leads a participant through a story that has meaning and emotion attached to each piece of the progression. Regardless of his method he might be more engaging and feel more realistic than someone whose super power is to magically intuit star signs. To the participant the process just feels right. The second ingredient that makes the approach that I use strong is a process that not only invisibly isolates the elements, but does so in a very casual and conversational interaction that feels completely natural. We are not looking at numbers or letters to find a sign, but rather talking about elements of personality. And as we describe with greater accuracy in relation to elements and qualities until we know the sign.
Ingredient Three: The Premise I think one of the best and most easily overlooked aspects of my original method was that in a way it was not even about finding a star sign. In fact often you can create a strong experience without ever telling the person their sign, even though you know it. This takes us to perhaps the most useful feature of star signs. The fact is that every single person knows one piece of information that must be one of twelve options. Not only do they know their sign, but they feel something about it. Those two pieces are what allow us to have a conversation in which we can reveal a sign without Bridge, without cards, or without anything else. But more importantly, it means that there is this tiny bit of information in every single person’s head that they relate to emotionally and intellectually. A process can not only feel like real mindreading, but in a certain light it can actually become real mindreading. We don’t just learn the sign, but use it as a sort of hidden leverage to learn more about a person. Signs, qualities, elements, and other associations that we find or invent can all be related to one another, and the sign becomes a key to unlocking the whole bunch. And it comes together in a congruent interaction that to the participant feels like being across from someone who has taken the time to really get to know them. And that’s not wrong; that is exactly what happened. There was a tiny bit of skullduggery involved, but it only served to provide some framework through which the performer could get one ahead, to learn things about the sitter just a little bit before the sitter is aware
that they have, and in so doing to deliver the attention and interest that they are taking in the person with a dash of wonder.
Concluding Thoughts I wrote up the fully fleshed out approach that I developed in a book called Zodiac Killer. I sold quite a few copies and was happy with the finished product, but I should have known that giving it a name like that would cause it to be seen as a star sign revelation and not much else. Learning from that experience I took some time to refine the book and the method into a document called Universal, which I will probably share in the future. In the meantime, all the ingredients are here to make something just as good as my approach or even better.
Final Thoughts This brings us to a close for this month’s Volume, this volume was the hardest volume to compile as it is HUGE, there is so much information in this volume that whilst writing, compiling and editing my head was spinning! I really think that this is most comprehensive guide on star sign divinations available currently and I feel so privileged to be a part of that. To have so many great people make contributions to these volumes is mind blowing and I honestly appreciate more than anyone could know. I started this volume on the plane to Palma (Spain) and I finished this volume in Dublin (Ireland) and the sights at both of these destinations spurred me on and inspired me in ways that I cannot express in mere words. My inspiration and creativity is back! My head feels free and I am ready to start getting back to being myself, big things are about to happen and I wish I could share them with you at this time but all I can say is, if you have liked what you have seen of me in the past I know you are going to love what you see in the future. At the end of each of these volumes I am always a little saddened because it almost feels like I am closing the door on a chapter/ particular talking point or category pertaining to one area or aspect of mentalism but I know secretly in the back of my mind by closing one door I am opening up a multitude more. I hope this volume delivered more than it promised and you took something away from it. Until next time,
Pete turner 2016 x