So, in the world of being a diviner seems mystical, right? Some lady in a turban that talks with an accent and is never wrong, correct? Her glass ball is the mirror to the future and simple to trust. But what is forgotten often in that picture is how a diviner is a person and hence apt to make mistakes and bad calls.

Diviners, no surprise, don’t like to make bad calls. One outstanding reason is because it helps fuels the “Diviners are frauds and cons” stereotype but another is because a life just became affected and it sucks knowing you’re the person they went to and trusted and you let them down. It’s broken faith. But it happens for a variety of reasons: tiredness, second-guessing, knowing too much about the person which can color the reading, etc etc etc.

In university, a friend of mine was introduced to me via another friend and he had a vat of problems ranging from girl problems to illness and having some drama of his own between being Muslim and managing Jewish student groups in effort to bridge the interfaith gap. So, consistently he asked for a reading and since he was a friend, I didn’t mind obliging. I think there were only few times where I suggested otherwise when he asked for readings from other friends. Despite reminding me that divinations are considered sinful in Islam but he asked for a few readings for reassurance.

I gave fairly uplifting fortunes. That things would be okay for the most part, but not to assume that things are going to be – poof – all and well. It just didn’t match what I felt intuitively. What I felt intuitively was that good days were going to be a way’s off but I worried that maybe I’m just leaning too heavy on the doom and gloom and perhaps it’s not that bad. That and I couldn’t predict the global economic collapse which screwed a lot of people up, including my friend. I would see the signs but I’m not an economist so I wouldn’t have pointed to that but to personal circumstance. I couldn’t see the forest for the trees, so to speak. Hell, I didn’t even know I was in a forest, I just saw trees, grass and sky.

We fell out of touch and I always would worry about those readings with him particularly, worry about their validity and if they were true myself. As far as I knew, he had an illness treating him poorly and was easily triggered by stress. Had difficulty with energy, sometimes couldn’t hold down food, already was wracked with stress, I guess I subconsciously (and consciously) didn’t want to add to that. I wanted things to be better, so that’s pretty much what came out of my mouth. I also thought that I was teetering too much to doom and gloom and didn’t want to do that, figuring it was just me being weird. I think I should have listened and opened my mouth.

Thanks to Facebook, we managed to reconnect and talk for a bit and he told me how things turned south for him but with one piece of good news – he’s not sick anymore. Apparently he never was, it was a misdiagnosis thankfully. So he’s fit now but still dealing with the problems affecting most Americans now and wishes he had gotten a more proper warning. Now he’s sworn off readings, saying that they’re sinful in the eyes of Allah anyways. I think that’s a good call.

The part that bugs me most is that I wonder what would have been the response should I have said that something really bad was coming and with no currently foreseeable end. Most people don’t respond well at all to that, especially if they’re going through bad things already. It’s like “What if I’m wrong and I just stressed out a sick person for no reason?” Plus, back then I wasn’t so on the pulse of the economic climate of the world like I am now (still not (and don’t want to be) economist grade but am learning quickly) so even if I could feel something was amiss, I couldn’t tell what it was. I may have dreams about hurricanes before they come but I don’t dream about bankers the same – and even if I did, I just would probably have written it off as A) I should watch my spending or B) something weird about prosperity and the draining of it…I’ll watch my spending. Even my ex-boyfriend was struck with pretty much the full hilt of the housing market collapse and jobs being difficult, pretty much the poster boy of the victims of the economy but I still didn’t get it until way after the problems swallowed my relationship whole, among other issues ticking away at it. Still pissed about that one.

My friend is very hopeful of the future, and hope is good. But still it doesn’t shake how bad it makes me feel because geez, I would always think “Man, what if I said this?”, “Man, I totally missed that, should I say something?” I thought I would see him one day in the halls but that didn’t happen so I would always stay thinking. It sucks to second guess and worse not be able to help. Divination does open up the mind to the unconscious universe for an answer but with nothing for the diviner to connect to for themselves, bad calls are made.

It sucks to make wrong guesses but it important to express that the circumstances can sway even the best diviners. I think that it’s because diviners don’t live in a vacuum. We have good days, bad days, quirks, biases, moods and personality. We live in the same environment as everyone else, etc etc. A diviner should be as objective as possible so not to get the reading mixed up with emotions or personal thinking but still trip ups occurs.

Usually with mistakes, the most you can do is learn and deal but some mistakes are harder to just pick up and move on from. They’re the kind of mistakes that make you wonder if this whole metaphysics thing is simply parlor tricks like some people say or is the fault just theirs for being incorrect. It kind of reminds me of a volume of a favorite manga of mine The Tarot Café where Pamela, the main character, once read for a blind person and instead of saying what was really on the cards (whether you know tarot or not, some cards simply convey bad things are coming just judging from the art, 10 of swords or The Tower is a great example) she made up a happier tale that was completely inaccurate. Granted, the main character knew that crap was about hit the fan Mach 5 so she wasn’t second guessing and opted for the safer route like I did but I did understand that she lied only so the blind person could feel peace for once by simply being told what he wanted to hear: It’s going to get better. I guess I wanted the same and went for the “spared feelings” route.

Is it good to be honest? Oh sure, always shoot for honesty and go with your gut but know that you’re going to have to make a tough call sooner or later and you’re also going to slip up sooner or later. Not always but occasionally it’s better to go with the happier story that could give the person the boost they need to see through the hard times they’re already going through. Okay, not better. I think it is more accurate to say it’s human, not better. It’s more human to understand that someone is going through something terrible and is constantly stacking up and to want to ease things a little. Even doctors have done it, telling terminal and critical patients or their families that things will be fine simply out of human sympathy. Is it right? Depends on the person you ask but it’s completely understandable why it happens. It’s difficult to be cold and unfeeling, especially when using an ability that requires feeling something. This does mean you may have a reading you’re not so sure of nagging you for a few years only to find out that it didn’t pan out like you hoped it would and you’re going to feel crappy about it but at the very least, learn while you kick yourself. And keep those blind choices to a minimum – reserved only for the hard times.

Or better yet, you could just put down the deck and say, “I don’t feel confident in reading for you because I sense something that I’m not sure is accurate and I certainly can’t describe.” That’s probably what I should have done.