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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Can Cold Reading Really Ever Be Easy? » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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stoneunhinged
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I've read this thread, in spite of the fact that I swore against the altar of Isis to stay away from the Pennies forum for a year. It's been six or eight months. I didn't make it.

I love you all. And I understand, comprehend, digest, absorb, accept, and maybe even believe what you are saying.

Still. There should be a book that gives guidance.

Not THE WAY. Not a Bible. Not the "read this and you don't have to practice" kind of book. Not a "if you read this everything will be simple" kind of book.

Still.

I love you all.

Or maybe I don't
Mindtrap
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Quote:
On 2008-12-02 14:16, stoneunhinged wrote:
There should be a book that gives guidance.

Not THE WAY. Not a Bible. Not the "read this and you don't have to practice" kind of book. Not a "if you read this everything will be simple" kind of book.


Perhaps Brad's The Dance. It's certainly a fine choice but depends on what it is you're looking for. The Dance is my best guess going on what you've said.
Best,
Mt.
SM41
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I, unfortunately, was one of those people who thought that cold reading was a thecnique...

However, thankfully, I do not consider it a thecnique.

And, thanks to Doug´s recommendation, I'm learning Richard Webster´s system for readings using palmistry as the vehicle.

Posted: Dec 2, 2008 4:44pm
And for me the worst approach to it is the one Luke Jermay uses in E.I.

I did not liked when he was talking about Cold reading and then he says something like;

It's the same skill used by psychci readers, and I use it also, but Im Better.
Erdnase27
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Don't listen too much to disclaimers etc. Instead of listening to ranting magicians about using disclaimers, listen to your audiences. They are your mentor, your audience, your friend, and your feedbackgivers all at the same time.

Even Darwin Ortiz stated: "mentalists using a disclaimer are hoping either it gets forgotten or it is too confusing for them"

In fact.. I don't claim anything, so there is not much to disclaim(max maven is nice on the edge I think).
ddyment
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Stoneunhinged mused:
Quote:
There should be a book that gives guidance.

For what it's worth, my recommendation on this topic is always the following ...

Cold reading is an art, a science, and a craft. For the craft, read Richard Webster (esp. Quick and Effective Cold Reading); for the science, read Ian Rowland (The Full Facts Book of Cold Reading); for the art, read Brad Henderson (The Dance). So not one book, but three, on different facets of the subject.

And of course the salesman in me hastens to add that if you decide to learn Richard Webster's book, then Cold Front makes a very effective study tool.
"Calculated Thoughts" is available at Vanishing Inc. and The Deceptionary :: Elegant, Literate, Contemporary Mentalism ... and More
mota
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All good points...

I had no question Doug had read Ian's book...I read his statement as saying magicians who use the cold reading phrase were often using it incorrectly. It was this I was referring to. Perhaps I mis-read.

Search "cold reading" on amazon and you will get a selection of theater books that teach how to read a script cold.

Cold reading is also reading someone you have no knowledge of.

Cold reading is also a phrase used to refer to a set of techniques that Randi and many others consider how readings are done.

Cold reading could also be any of a number of things...I wouldn't be surprised if it was.

Doug's example, "COLD FRONT" (a very practical work) is very good for this point. Some will say it is a branching stock reading, a prime example of cold reading techniques. Others will say it is accurate from a palmistry viewpoint so is a system. That should help clarify things ;-)

To refer to Ian's book as "science" is a stretch but it will satisfy some people that now they "know".

Here in Dallas a gang-banger is a gang member who usually has a gun. It also has at least one other meaning.

A run through the dictionary would find examples of words with multiple meanings on most pages.

No one definition is right. Perhaps that aids the confusion. When the original poster asked about learning cold reading he could have meant a couple different things.

Perhaps a new phrase is needed...
kinesis
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Cold, warm, hot, hmmm maybe I'm not so clear on what I do. Could someone perhaps explain to me what type of reading I do. I do Tarot. When someone comes to me for a reading I make a note of their (estimated) age, the way they are dressed, the way the speak etc etc. I also look for a wedding ring and any other visual clues before I start. When I do the Tarot reading I read the cards using my knowledge of their meanings and their position within the spread and in relation to the question or area the sitter wishes to explore. I apply suggestions and direction to the cards meaning as I feel is suitable to that person. Let me give you an example. The card that represented 'Past' indicated a time of rest. The person sitting in front of me was young and smartly dressed. The tarot evening was for the employees of a large company. I told the young lady the meaning of the card and asked her if she had taken a year out from university before she got the job with this company. She agreed she had done just that. Great start. So as a Tarot reader that hasn't read much at all on the subject of cold reading ( I go mainly by my life experience, instincts and what the cards tell me) am I cold, warm or hot reading?
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one - Albert Einstein






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Myrsolon
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My understanding is this:

Cold Reading - No Knowledge of Subject
Warm Reading - a term coined by some guy who wrote a book, basically, cold reading.
Hot Reading - Using information you've gathered beforehand.

It sounds like you're doing Cold Reading (or as the guy who wrote the book attempting to take credit for cold reading by applying a new word to it would say - you do warm reading because you use *gasp* your own knowledge of psychology.)
bevbevvybev
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I always try and use a thump tip while cold reading as much as possible.
mota
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The following is just my opinion, not gospel...

All those definitions miss the mark entirely. Whether you know "things" about a person in advance has little to do with a successful reading.

A reading explores what is on the sitter's mind and hopefully gives them some useful information that helps them in life. If you get "hits" along the way is secondary.

You can know nothing of a person and give them a wonderful reading. You can have tons of information and have "hits" galore and still tank the reading if you don't connect with them and help them to be happier than when the reading began.

A reading is a personal relationship, not a magic trick. This is true even in a short reading but becomes more important the longer the reading is.

So, is cold reading hard to learn? What is your goal? To make people think you know things about them you couldn't normally know? There are many ways to do that and many of them aren't all that difficult technically.

Or is your goal to be useful in the person's life? That doesn't come from techniques, but from the heart. If you don't have that as your priority you may have a very difficult time learning "cold reading".

So, just my opinion...cold, warm, or hot, learning to read is easy if you learn a system and have your heart in the right place.

The system can be learned. I can't help you with your heart.
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Quote:
On 2008-12-02 18:35, kinesis wrote:
Let me give you an example. The card that represented 'Past' indicated a time of rest. The person sitting in front of me was young and smartly dressed. The tarot evening was for the employees of a large company. I told the young lady the meaning of the card and asked her if she had taken a year out from university before she got the job with this company. She agreed she had done just that. Great start. So as a Tarot reader that hasn't read much at all on the subject of cold reading ( I go mainly by my life experience, instincts and what the cards tell me) am I cold, warm or hot reading?


None of the above.

You were actually reading.

:devilish:
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
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"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
ddyment
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Kinesis wondered:
Quote:
Cold, warm, hot, hmmm maybe I'm not so clear on what I do. Could someone perhaps explain to me what type of reading I do...

From kinesis' description, and considering the terms as used in psychology, parapsychology, and the dictionary (but not as typically used by Magic Café members), he is doing cold reading.

Because it does not depend on previously-acquired (possibly secretly-acquired) information about the querent, it is by definition "cold" ("Without advance preparation or introduction", The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language).

To the extent that he adjusts his readings as a consequence of feedback from the querent during the reading, some warm reading may be involved. It is feedback — nothing else, not skills of the reader, not psychological knowledge, etc. — that defines "warm reading". Some psychologists say that this must be verbal feedback, but most regard any kind of overt feedback as definitive. And to be realistic, most readings (unless the querent is sitting cold-faced and unresponsive) tend to involve some measure of warm reading. Even the late Herb Dewey, who commonly insisted that his clients not give him any feedback, privately admitted that he obtained quite a bit anyway.
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Davit Sicseek
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Now you've really confused me! What about red hot cold reading?
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bobser
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I believe 'red hot cold reading' is the term used by a magic/mentalist dealer in the advertising of his client's product. It's very similar to 's-it hot cold reading'.
Bob Burns is the creator of The Swan.
mota
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Red Hot Cold Reading was a title of a book by the late Herb Dewey. He was not a professional reader, but made some kind of dental product.

Among other things, he recommended going into a person's trash in their bathroom to get information on them. If that is your approach go for it.
bobser
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I caught Drew Macadam doing that in my bathroom whilst he was staying over. But in all fairness I think he was just looking for some chewing gum.
Bob Burns is the creator of The Swan.
Davit Sicseek
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Bobser/Mota: Thanks, but I was joking, forgot the Smile (not really). I remember there being loads of hype about that book at the time.
Send me the truth: davitsicseek@gmail.com
Todd Robbins
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Quote:
On 2008-12-02 13:08, mindpunisher wrote:
Forget about Penn and Teller. typical know it all magicians who really don't know it all.


Actually, Penn & Teller did great cold reads as part of their seances.
briandavidphillips
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Quote:
On 2008-11-29 20:21, kinesis wrote:
Shamefully I've never read much on cold reading. When I started doing Tarot my natural person reading skills increased dramatically. Using my instincts still freaks me out when I get hit after hit. At 44 (next month) I have life experience and that helps a lot. Cold reading without a 'system' gets easier with practise, experience and age.


I would suggest that your non-system cold reading is based upon a system. It is a system of Tarot plus intuitive insight. While it is not as newfangled and sexy as some of the product approaches, it is a system nonetheless . . . and one used by more folks the world over than any of the formal systems.

All the best,
Brian
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Brian David Phillips brian@briandavidphillips.com
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JAlenS
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Quote:
On 2008-12-02 17:30, ddyment wrote:
Stoneunhinged mused:
Quote:
There should be a book that gives guidance.

For what it's worth, my recommendation on this topic is always the following ...

Cold reading is an art, a science, and a craft. For the craft, read Richard Webster (esp. Quick and Effective Cold Reading); for the science, read Ian Rowland (The Full Facts Book of Cold Reading); for the art, read Brad Henderson (The Dance). So not one book, but three, on different facets of the subject.

And of course the salesman in me hastens to add that if you decide to learn Richard Webster's book, then Cold Front makes a very effective study tool.


Thanks for the guidance. I have only done CR in a very basic way and I'm sure I did not do it very well even though the subject thought it was great. I am looking at getting Ian Rowland's book first. I went over the basic CR in 13 Steps but found it lacking. It wasn't supposed to be exhaustive anyway.
I think mentalism is better with a little CR if not lots of CR. I am just getting into this seriously and the study of methodologies is what I love about mentalism Vs. magic although I love a good spooky magic trick.

Thanks for the resources.
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