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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » The Morality of Cold Readings? (58 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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ringmaster
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Oh, Grow up.
Less than 2% of reported UFO's turn out to be actual interplanetary vehicles.
hotjacket
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With great power, comes great responsibility!

Everyone's moral "line" is different. CR can do a lot of good - even though there are those readers who operate well outside of what I consider to be moral / ethical (I'm mostly thinking of certain famous TV mediums).
RedDevil
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Iain,
It's been that kind of year, so I wonder if you would honor me:
9 of clubs, 2 of diamonds, 4 clubs
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IAIN
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Quote:
On Aug 2, 2019, RedDevil wrote:
Iain,
It's been that kind of year, so I wonder if you would honor me:
9 of clubs, 2 of diamonds, 4 clubs


Sure, I'm off to bed in a min...

Your comment has kinda influenced what I'm about to say...so.

Lots of people in your life of late, not sure if that's through choice or having to. Money is settled but not much wiggle room let's say.now you have less people in your life and probably feels like a reset button has been pressed. Feels worse than it is and remember that those that leave don't always have a choice but those that stay, do. Feels like glowing embers, warming up. Slow and steady.
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RedDevil
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Thank you, brother. I read that just the way I wanted to. 😀
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IAIN
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Happy to know how accurate or wrong I am! No offense taken!
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Martin Pulman
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If you are using the techniques of traditional Mentalism and psychological illusion to interfere in people's private lives you are acting in a reprehensible, unethical manner - no matter how you try to justify it.

If you are using real paranormal powers then you are probably in the clear, ethically speaking.
RedDevil
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Quote:
On Aug 3, 2019, IAIN wrote:
Happy to know how accurate or wrong I am! No offense taken!



You did amazingly well actually. I must admit I silently accused you of googling me. ROFL. Well done and it was exactly what I needed. Thank you!

Even the paradox of having two contradictory statements actually made sense (more people, less people).

This is a great example of the light hearted fun, but also usefulness of CR if handled well:

1. One it shows how the sitter does all the work. My statement, “I read that exactly the way I wanted to” was a facetious reminder that this is how cr works so well. I put the interpretation that I wanted on his reading. Not only did “we” (Iain and I) co-create a dead-on reading, but...

2. I felt better after the reading and it made me smile. What’s wrong with that? What I do with his paragraph is totally up to me and he did not presume to advise me on anything. Besides, I asked for it.
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IAIN
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Quote:
On Aug 2, 2019, RedDevil wrote:
Iain,
It's been that kind of year, so I wonder if you would honor me:
9 of clubs, 2 of diamonds, 4 clubs


Here's the break down...

Clubs - social (clubs) lots of them, it's you in the middle. Surrounded.

Diamonds - 2 of them balanced like a seesaw, just not much of it but nothing unbalanced

Clubs - 4, so now less than the 9, but spread out, like tent pegs! So more family and friends feeling to it.

I said the embers thing because overall it felt like a growth/glowing embers thing as I imagined it was almost like a bit outdoors scene, the fire has died down and it's just close friends and you sitting around it toasting marshmallows...

All made up, visualisations, nothing psychic or intuitive, just some basic rules and story telling and imagination...
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IAIN
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Glad you feel better!
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Bill Cushman
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Nice work all around, Iain and RedDevil. Iain, you broke down how you read the cards mixed up with the pictures from your imagination. How about how Robert's statement, "It's been that kind of year..." influenced your words (and perhaps both consciously and subconsciously what you imagined?) as per, "Your comment has kinda influenced what I'm about to say...so." This seems a good opportunity to further explore how we do what we do, weave another thread into the story of your work...
IAIN
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Yup, can't quite describe how it influenced me but felt right to acknowledge it...

Was still a reading, no advice, and as we have said, it's a more open and honest way of doing things...
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Martin Pulman
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Maybe the easiest way to deal with the morality question is to ask yourself: if your client/participant discovered the true techniques you were using to give your reading would they be happy? And would they come to you for a reading again?
Last Laugh
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I think that's really a very insightful way of thinking about it.

My experience has been that often people who seek *oracle readings* understand that the oracle is a system and that the reader is merely learned in following the rules of the system (which do include some synthesis and interpretation of course). But then if we're talking about cold reading without an oracle, then it does start to get more murky. Especially if we're talking about using techniques that are designed to create an impression that you know more than you do.

Obviously it's totally different within the context of a mentalism stage show though.
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Mr. Woolery
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LL, you get to why I am so annoyed at the imprecision of the term "cold reading." It means several things, depending on who is saying it. If you are just throwing stock lines at someone for a mini-reading as part of a larger performance piece, I think there is very little in the way of ethical dilemma.

An oracle reading done without prior knowledge about the client is a reading done cold or a "cold" reading. As LL says, people who want a tarot or palm reading all seem to understand that I am interpreting an oracle. It isn't about me being psychic, but rather me having knowledge of the oracular system. If you are using some additional system, ask yourself whether adding in secret methods creates a fundamentally different reading for the client. If it only fleshes out and adds to what you would be saying anyway, I wouldn't see any ethical issue. I don't feel a need for such as the oracles I use are rich enough in meaning to allow for interesting readings without adding hidden work.

But the ethical dilemma can creep in if we see someone asking me for a word of advice and I pull out the stock lines and statistical probabilities to gain trust so I can move him to greater dependence on me. This can take the form of payment, favors, or just the rush of feeling powerful. That's the ethical line I'm not comfortable with.

In the end, I think a lot of these concerns about ethics could be reduced if all readings were given with the idea in mind of "how would this affect me if I were on the receiving end?" The hard part is thinking honestly about how you would respond to a similar reading. Ian Rowland said in his Penguin lecture that one should "say nice things." For a stage reading or tossing lines, I totally agree.

-Patrick
funsway
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Quote:
On Aug 12, 2019, Mr. Woolery wrote:

Ian Rowland said in his Penguin lecture that one should "say nice things." For a stage reading or tossing lines, I totally agree.

-Patrick


Why not for every human interaction. In my research of ancient and diverse divination systems, I came across an old set of rules for conversation.

Think what you wish, but before speaking review in mind what you are about to say, and ask:

1. is it true?
2. is it relevant to the conversation, or important to the listeners?
3. is it kind?

since that is not about to happen in our culture today, perhaps a cold-read can come closest for the seeker that day, at least compared with FaceBook.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



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RedDevil
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Quote:
On Aug 11, 2019, Martin Pulman wrote:
Maybe the easiest way to deal with the morality question is to ask yourself: if your client/participant discovered the true techniques you were using to give your reading would they be happy? And would they come to you for a reading again?



This above should be explored and repeated. Or in the preamble just tell them the truth.
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