For my first geomantic “return engagement,” I decided to ask whether we will have a milder-then-usual Spring season here in my local area (and no, I didn’t consider the “groundhog factor”). I used my bowl of carefully-gathered stones, even though they came from our previous “home ground” and are more regional than local. I’m rusty at this and was a bit sloppy in my preparation. As can be seen in the pictures, I drew the left column of stones first to populate Mother I and the right column for Mother II when, strictly speaking, I should have switched their position; but I carried this through for Mothers III and IV and was able to keep everything straight, so no harm done. Also, I neglected to write my question in the header of the “shield” chart.
The rest of the chart-generation process goes as follows:
Going from top to bottom, each of the four Mother figures has a head, neck, body and feet made up of a single dot or a double-dot pair according to whether the number of stones in its row was odd or even. These arrays form the “root” of the rest of the chart.
The four Daughter figures are created by transferring the “head” dots of the four Mothers to the chart field for Daughter I (field “V”) in descending order, the “neck” dots for Daughter II (field “VI”), the “body” dots for Daughter III (field “VII”) and the “feet” dots for Daughter IV (field “VII”). In each case, the single and double-dot arrays make up the Daughter’s head, neck, body and feet.
The four Nephews (some people say “Nieces”) are formed by adding the number of dots in the heads, necks, bodies and feet of Mothers I and II for Nephew I (field “IX”) and determining whether each sum is odd or even; repeating this with the four divisions of Mothers III and IV for Nephew II (field “X”); doing the same with Daughters I and II for Nephew III (field “XI”); and again with Daughters III and IV for Nephew IV (field “XII”). The single or double dots are placed top-to-bottom to form the Nephews’ heads, necks, bodies and feet as before.
The Right Witness (field “XIII”) is developed by summing the dots for the heads, necks bodies and feet of Nephews I and II, determining odd or even for each result and placing the appropriate single or double-dot array in each of the four positions. This step is repeated with Nephews III and IV for the Left Witness (field “XIV”).
The Judge (field “XV”) is created by adding the heads, necks, bodies and feet of the two Witnesses, determining whether the results are odd or even, and placing the appropriate dots top-to-bottom to create the figure. This figure provides the final decision or “verdict” regarding the question.
There is also a “Reconciler” (or Supreme Judge) that can be produced if the outcome of the reading shown by the Judge and Witnesses is still in unclear. I didn’t use one here, but it is constructed by adding the dots for the heads, necks, bodies and feet of the Judge and Mother I to create a new figure.
Regarding interpretation, the natures of the two Witnesses and the Judge are blended to create a composite picture. Here the Right Witness is the figure Albus, considered a good omen, and the Left Witness is Laetitia, also a good influence. However, the Judge is Amissio, signifying “loss,” a decidedly bad figure. In his book The Oracle of Geomancy, Stephen Skinner says “The general rules that govern the generation of these answers are:
If the two Witnesses are good and the Judge bad, the result will be obtained; but it will turn out unfortunately in the end.”
One possibility I can think of is that the Spring will be unusually mild here but it could cause undesirable consequences such as excessive flooding due to rapid snow-melt and torrential rains.
The more advanced method of interpretation involves moving the figures of the initial reading to a horoscope chart and examining their effect in the houses. To me, such elaborate analysis seems more suitable for complex questions. Since that isn’t the situation here, I didn’t pursue it. I will most likely do so in a future post.