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by going around in a circle which circumference was marked with letters
of an alphabet. The presage evolved as words formed from the letters onto
which the inquirers stumbled when becoming too giddy to stand up.
There is a curious connection between the practice of this divination and
the familiar technique of psychic circles. In this practice all siting in
a circle place a finger on a glass surrounded by letters of the alphabet.
The glass will touch letters in turn to indicate words or messages.
The principle of the repeated circling is to exclude the interference of
the will so to reduce the selection of letters to mere chance. In few species
of enhancement, however, the art of turning round is to induce prophetic
delirium. Some religious dances, particularly the rotation of certain devotees
on one foot with arms out stretched, are of this nature. Such incidents
indicate a sort of mystical secret.
Another form of gyromancy is where the person walks around in a circle until
the individual collapses. The position that the person falls in relation
to the circle determines the outcome of future events.
In the phenomenon known as the St. Vitus' Dance manifestations of spirit
intelligence were observed the movements of those in convulsions. The action
of the spiritual force tends to be spirally rhythmically, whether in language
or bodily members. A.G.H.
712; 62, 108.
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