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Today's Stichomancy for Stephen Colbert

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Tanach:

Ecclesiastes 5: 3 (5:2) For a dream cometh through a multitude of business; and a fool's voice through a multitude of words.

Ecclesiastes 5: 4 (5:3) When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for He hath no pleasure in fools; pay that which thou vowest.

Ecclesiastes 5: 5 (5:4) Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay.

Ecclesiastes 5: 6 (5:5) Suffer not thy mouth to bring thy flesh into guilt, neither say thou before the messenger, that it was an error; wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thy hands?

Ecclesiastes 5: 7 (5:6) For through the multitude of dreams and vanities there are also many words; but fear thou God.

Ecclesiastes 5: 8 (5:7) If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and the violent perverting of justice and righteousness in the state, marvel not at the matter; for one higher than the high watcheth, and there are higher than they.

Ecclesiastes 5: 9 (5:8) But the profit of a land every way is a king that maketh himself servant to the field.

Ecclesiastes 5: 10 (5:9) He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance, with increase; this also is vanity.

Ecclesiastes 5: 11 (5:10) When goods increase, they are increased that eat them; and what advantage is there to the owner thereof, saving the beholding of them with his eyes?


The Tanach
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Black Dwarf by Walter Scott:

CAN be done? Time presses--I know but one remedy--with four-and- twenty hours I might find many--Miss Vere, you must implore the protection of the only human being who has it in his power to control the course of events which threatens to hurry you before it."

"And what human being," answered Miss Vere, "has such power?"

"Start not when I name him," said Ratcliffe, coming near her, and speaking in a low but distinct voice. "It is he who is called Elshender the Recluse of Mucklestane-Moor."

"You are mad, Mr. Ratcliffe, or you mean to insult my misery by an ill-timed jest!"

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Rewards and Fairies by Rudyard Kipling:

tricks, all of 'em - and his one single talk was how Tom, Dick or Harry had stole this or t'other secret art from him.'

'I know that sort,' said Mr Springett. 'There's no keeping peace or making peace with such. An' they're mostly born an' bone idle.'

'True. Even his fellow-countrymen laughed at his jealousy. We two came to loggerheads early on Magdalen Tower. I was a youngster then. Maybe I spoke my mind about his work.'

'You shouldn't never do that.' Mr Springett shook his head. 'That sort lay it up against you.'

'True enough. This Benedetto did most specially. Body o' me, the man lived to hate me! But I always kept my eyes open on a

The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Walden by Henry David Thoreau:

experience of both years, not being in the least awed by many celebrated works on husbandry, Arthur Young among the rest, that if one would live simply and eat only the crop which he raised, and raise no more than he ate, and not exchange it for an insufficient quantity of more luxurious and expensive things, he would need to cultivate only a few rods of ground, and that it would be cheaper to spade up that than to use oxen to plow it, and to select a fresh spot from time to time than to manure the old, and he could do all his necessary farm work as it were with his left hand at odd hours in the summer; and thus he would not be tied to an ox, or horse, or cow, or pig, as at present. I desire to speak impartially on this


Walden