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Geomancy 101.0B: Generating the figures

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We have been discussing Geomancy, an Ancient Divinatory System dating back to Arabic Silk Traders. Originally, the Diviner would strike sand with a stick, or make random lines, reading the patterns to decide whether one or two points. Medieval European Geomancers would take a pen, pencil or piece or drawing charcoal to draw random dots on a piece of parchment or paper. Working from right to left, in keeping with Arabic writing, the Geomancer draws a series of figures. These are composed of Four Ranks, each with a single or pair of points thus there are Sixteen possible figures consisting of single or pairs of points. Modern Geomancers often use a coin or a pair of dice. “Heads” or an odd Number would be a single dot; “Tails” or an Even Number would make a pair of dots.

One begins with a question, which should be written down. The Four ranks of single or double dots are placed on the same piece of paper, from top to bottom, until a single Figure is drawn. The levels are: Head, Heart, Belly and Feet.

According to Tradition, Four Figures are drawn initially, called the “Mothers” (“Matres”). The First Mother is on the Right, then work in “Arabic” fashion towards the Left. Let’s see how this works. Meanings of the Figures will be dealt with later.

The Four Mothers are then used to create the Four “Daughters” (“Filiae”). The Four Heads create the First Daughter Figure, the Four Hearts create the Second Daughter, the Four Bellies create the Third Daughter, and the Four feet create the Fourth Daughter. In this addition Process, odd numbers are interpreted as “One”, and even as “Two”.

It gets a little complicated after this. The points of the Mothers and Daughters are added together to make the four Nephews (“Nepotes”). The Dots of the First Two Mothers are added together to make the First Nephew, the Dots of the Third and Fourth Mother are added together to make the Second Nephew, the Dots of the First and Second Daughters are the Third Nephew, and the Third and Fourth Daughter compose the Fourth Nephew. As was done before, odd numbers are interpreted as “One”, and even as “Two”

In like manner, the Nephews are added together to make the Right and Left “Witnesses” (“Testes”).

The Two Witnesses are added to make the Fifteenth Figure, the “Judge” (“Iudex”).

Notice, that, during the process, there are usually duplicate Figures. This is typical. .After composing the Fifteen Figures, they are relocated into "Houses", but that will be discussed later, along with the Meaning of each of the individual Sixteen Figures.

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