Using geomancy to find something that’s been lost is perhaps one of the most exciting functions of this divinatory system. The second full reading that I ever conducted was exactly for this purpose, and I was able to locate the items within minutes of casting the chart, with only a rudimentary understanding of geomancy’s interpretive techniques, a bit of intuition, and a pinch of luck.
Since then, I’ve had the opportunity to explore and experiment with more traditional methods with moderate success. The majority of these techniques were designed to be used with the astrological House Chart, as is the case with many techniques in the Western geomantic tradition. This is largely due to the elevated status that astrology held in Europe at the time it inherited geomancy or `ilm al-raml (“science of the sand”) from the Arab world, further compelled by the astrological elements that were already present within the Arabic geomantic tradition. Unfortunately, as a result of this marriage, the Shield Chart has largely remained underdeveloped in the Western tradition, a shortcoming that I’ve attempted to rectify with numerous proposals on this blog.
The experimental technique for finding lost objects presented in the following sections is one such proposal, primarily intended for practitioners such as myself who prefer to work with the Shield Chart independently of the House Chart. While this method may not be as robust as some of the existing models, it has considerable potential owing to its simplicity, flexibility, and reliance on the intuition of the diviner.
A major feature of this method is its use of the Four Triplicities, an interpretive framework that I’ve explored at length in a previous post. However, for the purpose of answering queries such as “Where are my keys?” or “Where did I lose my ID?”, each triplicity is assigned a general location and classical element:
|1st||Fire||In the querent’s home|
|2nd||Air||In motion or in a vehicle, vessel, or craft|
|3rd||Water||In someone else’s home or in a non-residential building|
Assigning elements to the triplicities in this way allows the ruling element of the Judge to tell you which triplicity to examine, as determined by the element that they share. For example, if the Judge is Fortuna Major, an earth-ruled figure according to the French system of elemental rulers, then the 4th Triplicity (also ruled by earth) and its associated location should be taken as the answer to the query. I personally prefer the French system of assigning elements to the figures over most others, as it results in logical correspondences, and is conveniently based on the point structure in the top half of the figure, e.g., : (fire), ∵ (air), ∴ (water), and :: (earth). However, this technique is certainly capable of accommodating other elemental assignments.
When employing this method, the Judge is also used to indicate the likelihood of finding the object. As seen in the following table, each element presides over two Judges, which are designated as either “unlikely” or “likely” based on the figures’ meanings and characteristics:
As for the remaining figures in the Court, the Witnesses should be interpreted as two factors that either led to the loss of the object or will contribute to its potential recovery, while the Sentence forecasts the long-term effect of the whole situation on the querent, as it normally does.
Once the triplicity indicating the location has been identified, the three figures within it are to be analyzed for additional clues by considering their linguistic meanings, elemental compositions, and qualities of movement (mobile/stable). In addition to these characteristics, the diviner should also allow their intuitive impressions to guide their interpretation.
While the Viae Punctorum and chart sum are normally taken into consideration when reading the shield, they are not factored into the interpretation when employing this particular technique, as their implications were not incorporated into its methodology. However, it’s highly likely that practitioners will either discover that these aspects of the chart also relate to the query, or they will innovate ways of interpreting them in a manner consistent with the overall model.
The example chart provided in the following section is inteded to give the reader an idea of how this system could work in practice.
Where is my identification card?
The water-ruled Judge (Amissio) points to the 3rd Triplicity, suggesting that the querent’s ID is located in someone else’s home or in a non-residential building. However, this particular figure is the less favorable of the two Judges ruled by water, indicating that it’s unlikely that the querent will recover the card. The Witnesses could be suggesting that the card was lost during a delay of some kind in realtion to a difficult yet successful endeavor, though the Sentence also appears to predict that the card will ultimately not be found.
Tristitia within the 3rd Triplicity might suggest that the card is on the ground floor of the house/building, or perhaps near someone who is despondent or physically ill. Albus within this triplicity could suggest that an older male with whom the querent recently interacted resides or works at this location, while Fortuna Major may be implying that something difficult was or will be achieved in this environment.
The reading above is just one of many possible approaches to interpreting a chart with this method, as different practitioners will have unique perspectives that speak more to thier style of divning. In light of that diversity, any suggestions, experiences, or insights that readers may have to offer are welcome and appreciated.