The hand is the cutting edge of the mind.
Jacob Bronowski, The Ascent of Man
Before we plunge into the study of karmic palmistry, lets take a quick look at some of the fundamental principles of traditional palmistry.
Palmistry is the art of reading a persons character through the shape of the
hands, the formation of the mounts of the hands, the fingers, and the lines that appear in the palm. Palmistry has enjoyed a fascinating history. It is believed to have been practiced in ancient India and China. Great heroes and spiritual leaders, such as the Buddha, have been recognized though palmistry.
The lines of the hand act as a sort of circuit board of the brain. Neurosurgeons tell us that these lines are caused by nerve endings in the palm. These nerves stem from the middle brain, where the two hemispheres join. Therefore, every thought you have, conscious and unconscious, is reflected in some way on your hand. As your life and attitudes change, the lines of your hand will reflect the new patterns of your life. This can be observed by studying your own hand closely. You may observe over time that your life line (the third of the three major lines; see also Figure 0.1) creeps across your palm as you experience dramatic changes in your
life. The other lines of the hand change as well. Its important to remember that the lines change as your attitudes change, not vice versa. The tail does not wag the dog.
Its useful to have a set system from which to read; otherwise youll get confused by the complexity of the first palm you come across and become discouraged. My system is simple and easy to remember. I start with the shape of the hand, analyze the length of the fingers, note any obvious mounts or valleys, and comment on the heart line, the head line, the life line, and the thumb. Then I move on to a more detailed analysis of spurs, islands, geometric shapes, and other complexities that are discussed later in this book. Actually, by working from the shape of the hand and the lines alone, you can give an excellent reading.
To obtain practice material, ask your friends to make photocopies or ink prints of their hands for you to study. Some of your acquaintances will think youre off your rocker, but youll find just as many who are interested in what their hands tell you.
Collect several hand prints before you get started, and notice the amazing variety of different hand types. Some palmistry systems list as many as thirty different categories based on hand shapes alone. Then, start learning the shapes of the hand as discussed below. This alone will tell you a lot about the personality of the individual. Move on to finger length and mounts, then lastly, the lines. Dont try to learn everything at once; to become a good palm reader takes months or even years. Ive been reading hands for over thirty years and Im still learning.
I encourage you to work at developing your intuition. Your sensitivity and intuition contribute to the overall depth of the reading. You dont have to be psychic to read palms, but the intuitive ability gives you the insights and examples that bring life to your readings. You must give each reading the personal attention that will make the experience memorable, dramatic, and eclectic. A refined sense of intuition can help, and not only in doing readings, but also in relationships and with a career.
Well be looking at the implications of hand shapes in much more detail in chapter 8, but for now well focus on four basic categories.
The Earth Hand
The earth hand is usually the easiest of the four types to recognize. The qualities to look for are a square, fleshy palm, short fingers, and very few lines (Figure 1.1).
The few lines reflect a preference for simplicity. If the fingers are rounded at the tips, the person may be a bit impatient. Square tips suggest a person who thinks a little bit more before he or she acts.
The subject possessing an earth hand will be practical, reliable, predictable,
emotionally stable, and often conservative. The line patterns of these hands are usually very simple, which reflects the persons simple and direct approach to life.
The Air Hand
Recognizable by its square palm and long fingers, the air hand denotes a person with a quick, agile mind (Figure 1.2). The negative side of air types is their tendency to Figures 1.1 and 1.2Earth hand (left) and air hand (right)
deceive and manipulate. Air types are great self-motivators and work according to their own inner agenda. They can be a bit flamboyant in their behavior, sometimes acting in a contrived manner to elicit a desired response from others. Consequently, they dont always mean what they say.
The Water Hand
A water hand has a rectangular palm, is very soft and flexible, and has many fine lines and long, smoothly tapered fingers (Figure 1.3). Water types tend to be moody, and at times their external appearance is completely at odds with the internal reality. You cant judge a book by its cover is definitely true of a water type. They can be difficult to please. The long fingers denote perfectionism and sensitivity to detail. Because of the myriad tiny lines covering the surface, water
hands tend to look old. However, the lines have nothing to do with age. Instead, they indicate the intensity of this types emotional expression.
Figures 1.3 and 1.4Water hand (left) and fire hand (right)
The Fire Hand
Fire hands have short fingers, which denote impatience, with a long palm, which indicates their vast reserves of emotional energy (Figure 1.4). The fire hand is usually hot to the touch. People with this hand type are passionate and intense. They love change and variety, and become easily bored with tedious work. They hate restrictions, limitations, or falling into a rut.
The length and shape of the fingers can reveal a lot about a persons emotional expression. Basicallyand very generallypeople with long fingers tend to be open-minded and flexible, but can be a bit perfectionistic. People with short fingers can be very stubborn and impatient. They want answers right now, and they like very specific answers to specific questions.
Length of Individual Fingers
The relative length of each individual finger can tell about the persons emotional quirks.
A long forefinger (the finger of Jupiter) denotes an aggressive, bossy
A long second finger (the finger of Saturn) represents someone whose
conscience is very strong.
A long ring finger (the finger of Apollo) represents someone who is an
idealist, but who has the ability to motivate others through his or her
strong personal magnetism.
A long little finger (the finger of Mercury) denotes someone with a natural
fluency with wordsa born salesperson. An extremely long Mercury denotes someone who bends the truth to suit him- or herself, so this person may not always necessarily mean what he or she says.
At last! The lines of the hand are what give palmists the most material for interpretation and analysis. The interpretation of the palm lines is called chiromancy.
First, familiarize yourself with Figure 1.5.
There are three major lines to start with, but as you can see from the figure,
there are many more lines you can use to fine-tune your reading. The three major lines are described below.
The Life Line (1)
The life line is the line that wraps around the thumb and ends at the wrist. Contrary to legend, the length of the life line cannot be used to predict the life span of the individual. This is inaccurate and can do absolutely no good. However, the life line gives us a good idea of the persons life energies, and how directed the person is. As you read a lot of palms, youll learn to distinguish the various energy levels between the two extremes.
A shallow life line means that the life energies are weak, and the person
tends to be tired a lot. He or she may tend to procrastinate and put off
A strong life line means that the person is vital and energetic; his or her
energies are high and very focused. The person is very directed and goaloriented.
A life line that hugs in close to the thumb denotes a homebody; home
and hearth will mean a great deal to this person.
A line that sweeps out across the hand denotes someone with an itchy
foot; this person will travel a lot because he or she tends to be restless.
Once again, there are many shades of gray in this area; youll find very
few pure palms.
Spurs and lines shooting off from the life line can indicate up and down
periods in the persons life. Spurs that shoot toward the wrist indicate
down periods, while upward spurs indicate happy periods.
The Head Line (2)
The head line is the line that starts at the side of the hand, just above the life
line, and travels horizontally across the palm. The head line denotes patterns of thought and tells us if a person is logical or imaginative in his or her approach to problem solving. Where the head line ends is of the utmost significance.
A head line that is straight and points to the heel of the hand belongs to a
practical, logical person. This person prefers a direct approach to life and
tends to see things in terms of black and white. He or she can be somewhat
of a perfectionist.
A head line that curves in toward the wrist denotes a person who is imaginative
and creative in his or her approach to life and problem-solving.
The curvier the line, the more imaginative the approach. If the line
travels far down into the heel of the hand, you have someone whos a bit
of a dreamer, and who will have to focus on making his or her ambitions
The Heart Line (3)
The heart line is a very interesting line, because most people want to know about their romantic prospects. You could make a good living simply by reading the heart line alone. Since I dont believe that palmistry can pinpoint future events at least not without taking into account the effects of karmayou cant predict the exact date when someone will meet the person of his or her dreams by studying the heart line alone. However, if you can get a feel for how the person thinks and for some of his or her emotional strategies, and you know a lot about human behavior patterns, you can make a few good, shrewd guesses about the persons future. A little intuition and clairvoyant ability helps too.
The heart line starts at the edge of the hand above the head line, and travels
across the hand toward the thumb side. Where the heart line ends is important.
If the heart line ends under the first finger, it denotes a strong romantic
who may put partners on a pedestal. This person may be the type who
falls in love with love.
A heart line that ends under the second finger denotes someone who is
flamboyant and dynamic in his or her affections. Watch out! You may get
your head hugged off. People with this line love to show their affection and
receive great satisfaction from helping others.
A heart line that travels up into the second finger is very rare and known
as the Gift of Mercy. These people are capable of great, loving sacrifice in
the service of others. Mother Teresa had this formation.
When the heart line ends between the first and second fingers, theres a
good, balanced approach to love. The person is able to give and receive
affection appropriately, and wont get caught up in another and lose sight
of him- or herself. This also indicates a healthy enjoyment of physical love.
Very few people have a perfectly balanced heart line. Youll notice little forks, islands, and spurs shooting off of it, which denote hard lessons learned in the school of love. Sometimes you will notice two heart lines. This is known as the Girdle of Venus (7), which can indicate extreme sensitivity, or as some believe, circulatory problems.
Look at Figure 1.5 to locate the following lines.
The fate line (4) travels vertically up the palm and denotes the persons
ambitions. Traditionally, a long, straight fate line indicates someone with
good drive and focus. A splintered, forked, or interrupted line denotes
uncertainty on the life path. The person could be at odds with him- or
The Sun line (5) is a good line to have, as it signifies success in worldly
endeavors. It can indicate fame, popularity, and attachment to an expensive
The Mercury line (6) is a mark of amazing communication skills. People
with this line are natural salespeople, very chatty and charming, and communicate well with others.
The Girdle of Venus (7) has already been discussed in connection with the
heart line. It indicates extreme emotional sensitivity and empathy.
The Ring of Solomon (8) denotes psychic ability and wisdom.
The Ring of Saturn (9) shows an old soul; someone who is wise beyond his
or her years. It can indicate a natural teacher or spiritual leader.
The Medical Stigmata (10) is a sign of a natural healer.
As well see in chapter 6, children lines (11) do not necessarily show the
number of children you will have, but the number of children you are
capable of parenting. Often people express this parenting need though
pets, other peoples children, or by working with kids in their spare time.
As well see in chapter 6, marriage lines (12) are like children lines in that
they do not necessarily show how many marriages you will have, but the
number of soul mates you will encounter during your life.
The Bow of Intuition (13) is self-explanatory. This indicates a naturally
strong sense of intuition.
The Via Lascivia (14) gives the owner an above-average interest in sex.
The Mars line (15) represents increased success, assertiveness, and competitive skills. Some schools of palmistry associate this sign with the presence of a protective spirit (see chapter 6).
Sympathy lines (16) give a person a sympathetic, understanding outlook.
The Family Ring (17) shows that the person has a great love for home and
hearth, and that family will always be important.
Bracelets or rascettes (18) act as extra life lines and add strength, alertness,
and virility to the person as he or she advances in years.
Putting it All Together
Its rarely necessary or desirable in a quick reading to tell a person everything you see. Long, detailed readings can become blurred in the individuals recollection. Theres a lot to be said for the short-and-sweet approach.
If you do other sorts of psychic readings, such as Tarot cards or runestones, you can use quick palm readings to add variety. A palm reading for entertainment (such as you might deliver at a party, for example) shouldnt go over ten minutes.
Also, its important to be positive. People tend to take readings very seriously, and often will act on what you say. Remember, were not qualified to offer medical, legal, or financial advice. Try to always end on an upbeat note. Good luck!
Oh, who can read the stars like the Egyptians
[Gypsies]? And who can read the palm like
George Barrow, The Zincal