Two nights ago, I took a tea leaf reading class as research for a Victorian murder mystery I’m planning. Sarah, the instructor, was a warm, open woman who relaxed our small group of three students with her “there is no wrong way to do this” philosophy. She was serious though when she warned us of the responsibility inherent in the job, saying that every reading should leave the people involved feeling hopeful and empowered.
You begin each reading by sipping your loose tea (between your teeth, hopefully leaving most of the leaves in the cup!) until there is only about one teaspoon of liquid left. We used beautiful floral china cups. (The cup pictured is my only teacup not from a set, but it is a beauty.) Then you turn the cup upside down into the saucer, not worrying about if you spill a bit. As Sarah says, whatever happens was meant to happen. At this point, some people turn the cup three times in the saucer, (I don’t know clockwise from counterclockwise so that part passed me by) or hold it with their hands to further imprint their intention on it, ask a question, or just turn the cup over and jump right in.
The actual reading seems to be any combination of seeing animals or objects in the leaves in the cup, or in the saucer, or spilled across the tablecloth if that’s how it landed, and using them as a springboard to your intuition. There are traditional symbols to look for but in this new-age age, it seems the sky is the limit. Mine, done with chunky herbal tea, looked like a totem pole in the bottom of the cup, all of the tea fragments lined up, and even looking like animals. A bear on top, a goose in flight below, etc. Someone suggested I check out First Nations iconography. Good idea. (I live in a town where totem poles line the streets.)
I’d had my tea leaves read before, and was – resistant. I’m not sure why, it wasn’t skepticism exactly, perhaps just, as Sarah suggested, resistance to the intrusion. I don’t feel psychic, not in any woo-woo way, just a little too open, too vulnerable to have just anyone poking around in my world.
So anyway, I was sitting beside the reader and was the first to be read at our table. I didn’t know what to expect, and I balked. I resisted. The reader spun her wheels, getting nowhere, but I couldn’t let her in. When she moved on to another person down the table, I relaxed, and at one point I thought she was giving the other woman my reading! That she was picking up my questions because of our proximity. Not fair to any of us really. At that point the other woman looked slightly confused. What the reader was saying to her were things that I knew she had no connection to but were high in my mental to-do list and list of concerns. The reader was really quite good, and after this class I’m more sure than ever that she knows how to channel – something.
I’ll be going back for another reading. I’m not done my “research” yet.