Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Historically most divination methods are built around something whose outcome couldn't be predicted, that is, something "random" in the most general sense of the word. So instead of reading tea leaves or goat entrails today, why not have modern divination methods be based on modern randomness? And the most prevalent randomness in many people's lives today is the shuffle mode on their MP3 or CD player.

Given how rich with possible interpretations are the songs in your music collection -- that is, any given one can be determined to be "accurate" retroactively based on so many things from the meaning of intentionally-vague lyrics to the particular instrumentation or tempo to the happenstance of what people, places, or events are associated with a song in your personal history -- random song selections are not just good enough as a divination method, they're actually far better than the nonsense that makes up horoscopes.

Hence, the practice I call mipzomancy -- because it has to have some name, and I started with "MP3" and mutated it until it sounded like a real word -- which is putting on a random playlist with as wide a variety of musical options as you have, and then putting interpretations on the songs as they come up. As with most divination methods, beforehand it could mean anything and afterwards it's clear what it meant. Give it a try!


drscorpio said...

I love this idea!

litlfrog said...

Don't have access to my music library just now, but I shall see what the Internet thinks. I turn on my random QuickMix of various stations on Pandora and hear . . .
"English Country Garden" by the Darkness.

It's about an affair between a laborer and the farmer's daughter, including the priceless line "She said have you got a match, I said yes /
My cock and Farmer Giles' prizewinning marrow". But the song ends with her going off with ome other guy. I think the message is to not wander after fleeting carnal pleasures. Thanks mipzomancy!