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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: barnum statement

DEFINITIONS

Barnum Statement:

Description of a sentence used in a cold reading that could apply to anyone but, when given by a professional, sound as if they might apply only to you. Examples include:

 “You have a tendency to be critical of yourself. At times you have serious doubts as to whether you have made the right decision or done the right thing.”

“You wish those close to you would see you more for your strengths and not focus on your weaknesses, especially in your relationships.”

“You have a great deal of unused capacity which you have not turned to your advantage.”

Amateurs would simply repeat them. Professionals try to understand the concepts behind them and insert versions of them in their fake readings only when appropriate.




ARTICLES

An Introduction to Electional Astrology
Electional astrology is utilized in choosing the most appropriate time to begin something. The intent is to achieve a successful outcome, and the rules applied are very specifically set toward that end. Many of the rules have their foundation in ...
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Astral Outsourcing Procedure
Introduction. The purpose of astral outsourcing is to acquire new growth resources through astral plane interactions, often with the aid of discarnates and astral intelligences and guides.  Here is the procedure: Step 1. Outsourcing ...
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Meditation
Meditation is: An emptying of the mind of all thoughts and "chatter" often by concentration only on the slow inhalation and exhalation of breath and is characterized by slow alpha and theta waves. It induces relaxation and a "clean slate" ...
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Sensitive people have gotten a bum rap. We live in a world that doesn't embrace the values of sensitivity, so we get told that we are weak, unusual, touchy, and hard to please. The sad truth is that we hear these messages in many ways throughout our lives. Even if it is from a well-meaning teacher or parent who tries to "toughen us up," the crux... read this article
Remaining Magickal in the Midst of Chaos
Sacred Space, Tarot, and Your Magical Practice
The Magical Use of Prayer Beads
The Future of Money Magic: What Do We Put Under the Candle When Our Currency Goes Digital?
Understanding the Moon Signs of Others

Most recent posts:
Are You a Sensitive Empath?
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Dr. Kyra Mesich, author of the new Strength of Sensitivity. I've dedicated my holistic psychology...

The Cards as Living Entities
In just a few months (August, to be precise), Llewellyn’s Complete Book of Tarot by the knowledgeable experienced, and delightful writer Anthony...

Magickal Scavenger Hunts
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Melanie Marquis, author of A Witch's World of Magick, The Witch's Bag of Tricks, the forthcoming Modern...




The Madness of Mercury The Madness of Mercury
By: Connie di Marco
Price: $14.99 US,  $17.50 CAN
Journey of Souls Journey of Souls
Case Studies of Life Between Lives

By: Michael Newton
Price: $17.99 US,  $20.95 CAN
The Linestrider Tarot The Linestrider Tarot
By: Siolo Thompson
Price: $28.99 US,  $33.50 CAN
Wicca Wicca
A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner

By: Scott Cunningham
Price: $14.95 US,  $16.95 CAN
Easy Tarot Easy Tarot
Learn to Read the Cards Once and For All!

By: Josephine Ellershaw, Ciro Marchetti
Price: $19.95 US,  $21.95 CAN