$50,000 Challenge

I challenge any and all behavioral counselors, character analysts, and esoteric readers to a four hour duel. As a full-time practicing palmist, world-class keeper of secrets, and confidential quickie hand reader for many tens of thousands of remarkable people over the past forty years, I’m ready to put my money where my mouth is. I plan to prove that palmistry is the handiest, quickest, and most effective way to observe human character.

The rules are simple. Forty-eight individuals of various ages, genders, races, vocations, and other diversities will be selected to receive five-minute consults from each of twelve challengers. It’s amazing how much valuable information can be shared in five-minutes. People to be counseled will be organized in four separate hour long groups of twelve. Three qualified mutually agreed upon judges will interview each of forty-eight people to choose which counselor was most helpful to the most people. A reputable psychiatrist, psychologist, and social worker will make a great panel.

No matter what you see or how you see it, it’s what you say and how you say it that matters in the final analysis. Over many years of honing my counseling skills, I’ve sharpened my swords into scalpels and look forward to wielding them with an open mind, heart, and spirit. This challenge may seem subjective, but even if all twelve counselors are great, someone still has to be greatest.

There are many wonderful ways to observe a person’s potentials. Any method that helps people and leaves them feeling hopeful is valuable. I hope to inspire other palmists, astrologers, numerologists, graphologists, tarot and rune readers, psychics, psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, human resource specialists, guidance counselors, jury selectors, profiling whizzes, or anyone who can give forty-eight helpful five-minute counseling sessions in four hours. I’ve met many brilliant readers at special events and many others who secretly believe they’re the best, but few who have the courage or resources to bet on themselves. I’m searching for eleven others who do.

$50,000 will be awarded to the most helpful counselor. Eleven other pros and I will each pay a $5000 entry fee. $10,000 of the $60,000 will be budgeted to compensate judges, provide twelve quiet spaces with tables and chairs, a common gathering space with natural light, hors d’oeuvres, and quiet music to create a harmonious atmosphere. The venue for the event will be located in the city with the most contestants. Any left over funds will be divided equally among the challengers who must travel.

Please pass this challenge on to anyone you know who qualifies. If you believe in them, offer to wager with them. Whoever invests in me (up to half) will receive their full share (10X) if and when I win. My mission is to give everyone a helping hand, their own.

Your life truly is in your hands. Click on links below to see how issues, challenges, talents, and other potentials can be seen, interpreted, and addressed in the hands.

The value of palmistry is in seeing a person’s character, values, thinking, feelings, will power, health, relationships, creativity, philosophy, purpose, dreams, and spirituality.

The magic of palmistry is in observing hands change as thinking and circumstances change over time. A tiny change in the consistency, elasticity, texture, color, direction, or quality of a finger, mount, or line can embody a huge change in a life.

The power of palmistry is in taking responsibility for what we know. The human race has become a race against bad shit happening. We all need a helping hand, our own.

It’s time for palmistry to be recognized as a quick and easy way to clearly see self and others. Precious insight lay hidden in plain sight at the ends of our arms. Our hands are maps of our character in past, present, and future. Hand morphology and topography provide accessible, practical, and effective ways to truly “know thyself” and other.

“God has placed signs in the hands of all the sons of all men that all the sons of men may know his work” Old Testament.  No matter how you define “his”, God is in your hands.

Appearances can deceive

Behavior can be modified

Words can be untrue

Hands never lie 

Favorite Reviews & Press Materials

Pisces and Hands

You don’t need a Pisces Sun or Pisces planetary relationships or placements in your natal horoscope to be Piscean. Pure types have dominant top phalanges on long narrow fingers, smooth joints, conical tips, and loop prints, especially on index fingers. All feeling types have long rectangular palms and long fingers. Pisceans have medium set mildly flexible shapely thumbs, sensitive looking fingers, a combination of round and conical fingertips, long narrow nails, and their head and life lines interwoven at their beginnings. Pinkies with tiny bottom and middle phalanges and no knots symbolize not having any need for physical order or material wealth. Feeling types with inwardly curving pinkie fingers hate emotional confrontation. In my experience, Pisceans tend to have more hand and finger flexibility, more peripheral shallow lines, and less deeply etched basic heart, head, life, and fate lines than Scorpio and Cancer types.

Pisces is a personification for spiritual growth. As the astrological home of Neptune (Poseidon, King Triton), ruler of the seas. Pisces embodies emotion, instinct, personal feelings, and the collective unconscious. Neptune can be a calming or destructive force in nature. The King of the Sea rules substances like prescription and recreational drugs, nicotine, alcohol, caffeine, or anything that alters consciousness, produces illusions, and feeds delusions. Pisces mundane correspondence is religion. Spirituality is its esoteric match. Spirituality without religion is fine. Religion without spirituality is blind.

Pisces is the most sensitive, least acquisitive, and most introverted of all types. She’s often misunderstood because she communicates through a lens of feeling. Less sensitive, more practical Pisces have strong earth, air, fire, and deep clear basic lines, large thumbs, stiff joints, square fingertips, developed knots, broad nails, and arch and whorl fingerprints. When head and heart are balanced, Pisces can be extremely powerful. George Washington was a Pisces. Former CEOs of Citigroup, IBM, Merck, DuPont, and Bank One were Piscean. One intriguing Pisces CEO is Michael Dell of Dell Computer. Like Ariel, daughter of King Triton, ruler of the Seas and the unconscious, Michael imagines whatever he wants as he swims into collective unconscious. He intuitively knows what the public needs and hones in on that. He must keep a watchful eye on Ursula (octopus conglomerate) who lusts for control of his empire.

Pisces is well suited to teaching, human resources, and helping professions. Many are at home in visual arts and music. Hand qualities will vary depending on their natural talents and abilities, decisions, and actions. Piscean strengths include compassion, humility, and faith. Not known for mental or emotional decisiveness, Pisces are private, spiritual, and hard to be intimate with. Their trust must be earned. Impressionable and easily influenced, some Pisces attempt to escape reality when circumstances get too hard. Many become substance abusers like Johnny Cash, Jerry Lewis, and Liza Minelli.My father was Pisces, along with my brother and daughter. I’ll love and cherish them unconditionally for eternity.

Pisces is intimately connected to the collective unconscious and mundane events. Uranus was the only outer planet to pass through Pisces in the twentieth century from 1919 to 1928. Uranus completed its eighty-four year cycle through the zodiac in 2003 and began its path through Pisces, crossing into Aries at the end of 2011. Let’s observe the cultural similarities as Uranus passed through Pisces in the 20th and 21st Centuries.

When World War I ended in 1919, discrimination, immigration, and consumerism grew.  Uranus left the sign of Aquarius and moved into Pisces. A new kind of rebellion began. Over four million steel workers and miners walked off the job to protest too many work hours with “inhumane pay”. Three Presidents held office during Uranus’s first transit through Pisces (Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover). The 30th President, “Silent Cal” Coolidge (born on the 4th of July) said, “The business of America is business”. He told us, “Biological laws tell us that certain divergent people will not mix or blend”, speaking of the “inferior races” of Asia. While focusing on and promoting ‘government business partnerships’, they all put material wealth and unobstructed corporate power in the forefront of the nation’s political, social, and cultural fabric. Government was in bed with big business. On its recent return through Pisces, George W. Bush gave our healthcare Industry to the pharmaceutical and insurance industries, energy to big oil companies, and security for airports and seaports in the hands of private enterprise. He even tried to bequeath our Social Security to the Stock Market.

When Uranus transited into Pisces, traditional thrift and austerity gave way to neo-consumerism and buying on credit. Two out of three Americans had electricity, refrigerators, and washing machines. Spending on recreation tripled. Henry Ford announced cars in Green and Maroon as well as black. Mass produced foods: Rice Krispies, Lender’s Bagels, Mounds Bars, Betty Crocker, and Peter Pan Peanut Butter influenced mass taste. Consumerism and credit created the illusion of an easier more convenient life. Movie houses, chain stores, and radio advertising proliferated. By the end of Uranus’s transit through Pisces, movie attendance had outstripped church attendance. Consumer magazines like Modern Romance challenged moral codes. Many critics believed consumerism was driving Americans into a soulless existence of materiality and conformity. Sinclair Lewis, author of ‘Babbitt’, highlighted the delusion of Uranus in Pisces. He blamed mass production and consumption for “having created a bloodless, loveless, and standardized world”.

The Ku Klux Klan had a resurgence that targeted African Americans, blacks, immigrants, Catholics, and Jews. The Klan marched on Washington DC In 1925 with over 40,000 hooded members. New immigration laws reduced the stream of immigrants to a trickle when congress decided to reduce the flow of immigrants based on quotas of 150,000 new immigrants a year.

Uranus in Pisces symbolizes a conflict between science and religion. Modern science clashed with Intelligent Design and Creationism as Uranus transited Pisces in both centuries. Tennessee legislators voted that it was unlawful for any teacher in a state supported school “to teach any theory that denies the story of man’s creation as taught in the bible”. Man was too intelligent to descend from a lower order of animals. One high school biology teacher named John Scopes taught the theory of evolution. As the defendant in the infamous “Scopes Monkey Trial” legal battle, John Scopes lost.

Culture clashed with school curriculum, obscenity, censorship, race, and sexuality in theater and literature. The German Bauhaus School of Architecture, with its less is more design philosophy, influenced architecture and products around the globe. When I graduated from Carnegie Mellon in 1969 as an industrial designer, ‘intelligent design’ was about making and saving money for manufacturers. No one cared about waste, except for disposal and financial cost. Truly ‘Intelligent design’ is when designers create useful products, choose sustainable resources, determine how much energy will be used in production, know what pollutants are generated, what remedies are available, and how the product will ultimately be disposed of, reused, or recycled.

Common sense is not good sense. The human race has become a race against bad shit happening. Donald Trump has taught us that it’s not what you do, but what you get away with that really matters. Why do we continue to nourish a perverse society with a morbid sense of reality and humor? We can be a lot healthier and happier by taking better care of our planet, ourselves, and each other.

Here are some similarities between the past two transits of Uranus in Pisces:

1919 – The worst baseball scandal (Black Sox) in history occurred when a grand jury brought indictments against eight players from the Chicago White Sox. Accused of throwing the 1919 World Series, they were eventually found not guilty.

2003 – The illicit use of steroids became the biggest scandal in modern baseball.

1919 – The eighteenth amendment prohibited the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors, which encouraged home brewing and bootlegging.

2003 – George W. Bush prohibited Medicare from negotiating drug prices. A black market for drugs from India and Canada began to thrive.

1921 – First formal investigations of the Teapot Dome oil scandals were initiated.

2003 – USA invaded Iraq under false pretenses in order to secure oil resources.

1924 – The worst tornado in US history obliterated 35 towns in Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, Indiana, and Illinois.

2005 – Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.

Much has happened since 1919. Not much has ideologically changed.

Neptune takes 164 years to completely cycle through our zodiac. Neptune returned to its home base in Pisces on April 4, 2011 and will remain in Pisces until April 1, 2025. It’s hard to predict what Neptune will symbolize in Pisces because Neptune dissolves the illusion of reality. Many astrologers say that Neptune in Pisces symbolizes the dawn of a new age of spiritual enlightenment. This may be true, but it appears we may have to get there the hard way. Our culture must first lose what we value in order to appreciate it.

Pluto transited into Capricorn in 2008. Uranus transited into Aries in 2011. These three outer planets together symbolize a total transformation of business, energy, politics, and religion. I don’t feel comfortable making predictions about Neptune because it’s so nebulous and fickle, but we can already see in six short years how the illusion of power resulting from extreme wealth has nourished a delusion and disillusion of the 99%.

Neptune rules HMO’s, hospitals, and pharmaceutical industries that value profits over people. Prisons have been privatized for profit and packed with predominantly black petty criminals. Religion has abandoned spirituality, becoming more fundamentalist, fanatical, and violent. Even bacteria and viruses have become a lethal threat to the fabric of humanity. The USA has a president who is certifiably insane and cabinet members whose mandates are contrary to the purpose of their positions. Before Uranus leaves Aries in 2018, we could see a religious war, designed to stimulate our economy, fought by the have nots, and created to pack the burgeoning pockets of the haves.

The Greening of Our Psyche

Humanity needs to open its eyes, minds, and psyches and realize that our physical problems and challenges are symptoms of ideological, philosophical, and spiritual disease. The human race has become a race against bad shit happening.

‘Psychic Pollution’ is the mother of all pollution. It’s the most insidious, contagious, and pandemic of all contaminations, infecting the immune systems of our souls and the spirit of our planet. We must wake up and smell the ‘Psychic Garbage’. Our negative ideas and beliefs are catalyzing the fear and terror that is endangering our good health and the good health of our world. Terror and wrath boil and bubble in a cauldron of trouble. Our personal health and the health of our planet is a consequence of our thinking and feelings. We need to observe our thoughts objectively and realize that all physical manifestation is a result of our thinking. We can close landfills, but what can we do with malignant mind-fills and toxic emotional-spills?

It’s time to look in the mirror. Walls divide, boundaries detach, censorship destroys, and lies deceive. How many gilded towers, glitzy gambling casinos, graven images, beauty queens, shark tanks, and celebrity idols do we need?  Must we prostrate ourselves before an over-clothed self-appointed emperor on a polished brass pedestal? Being financially wealthy and spiritually bankrupt is a strain of spiritual cancer. Preaching love and faith and practicing hatred and fear is not a good idea. Vengeance is not a solution to violence. Enough minds focusing on toxic thought creates self-fulfilling prophecies.

Fortunately, truth disinfects. Hindsight catalyzes foresight. Our present and future is in our hands. Our mother is immune deficient. She suffers from tumor’s we call towns and cities, varicose veins we call roads and highways, cancerous lungs we call air and sky, and polluted arteries we call streams and rivers that are turning our reservoirs, lakes, and oceans into toxic waste sites. Why must everything be bright white, squeaky clean and lemon fresh? We consume massive amounts of highly toxic chemicals every day in our wars with insects, rodents, weeds, dirt, stains, odors, germs, bacteria, pathogens, viruses and other potential and invisible enemies. We’re marinating in the chemicals that heat and cool us; power transportation; provide us with products; color, flavor, and preserve our foods; and enable us to communicate on a grand scale. We eat, drink, breathe, wash, brush, and apply risky chemicals to our scalps, armpits, toes, and crotches.

What has happened to good sense? Why are we debating climate change? Must we always lose to learn to value? Why is pollution profitable? Fossil fuels are finite. Hundreds of horses gallop under the hoods of gas guzzling vehicles that can go twice as fast as our highest speed limits. Screening ourselves from the sun has become a way of life. We will all need air and water purifiers. Oxygen will be marketed over the counter like bottled water. We’ll be able to purchase “a breath of fresh air” at oxygen bars. Designer oxygen masks and lemon scented oxygen will become fashionable. Pharmaceutical, apparel, and cosmetics industries will create new chemicals and products to protect us from their past, present, and future chemicals and products.

In ancient Egypt, Hermes explained that anyone can connect with anyone at any time. As father of the cell-phone, Hermes taught that everything is made up of cells and our brains are the hardware. Our job is to put our minds where we want them to be and then tune our links. Hermes said, “The All is in all and all is in The All”. We create value out of thin air.

By observing our plant world, we can better understand the life cycles of our human world. In order to cultivate a healthy world it is essential to select healthful concepts for planting.  We must clear away destructive and unproductive thoughts and plant positive ideas in our minds. Healthy attitudes and circumstances will enable new hope to sprout. A healthy society must have healthy nutrients and a natural, supportive environment in which to create strong roots. It’s our responsibility to show the world by example that we truly care. We need to pull the weeds of greed and prune the branches of waste in order to serve mankind wherever and in whatever ways we can. We must nurture relationships and conditions that fortify our world. In time, our gardens will bud and blossom. We can fertilize our crop by promoting diversity and achieving unity with other nations that will enrich our garden and prepare us to bear fruit. Many varieties of fruits and vegetables can thrive together in a garden. Many types of people can thrive together in our world. Thinking of humanity as a flourishing garden ensures a bountiful harvest for the soul, an abundance of good health, happiness, prosperity, and peace of mind.

My Favorite Reviews

I briefly mentioned testimonials and reviews in my Publicity Series. While it’s been a long time since I’ve had to sell myself, this wasn’t always true. In my earlier years, I solicited reviews and referrals from clients to generate more private clients and special event business. I also received a lot of unsolicited reviews. Here are some favorites.

Private Clients

“After mark did my reading, I spent a lot of time today thinking about his words. It was remarkably resonant, and inspired in me an incredible fascination with the depth and art of palmistry. Much of what he said I knew about myself, but there is something in the way he reads and speaks- with care, but also unafraid- that provides a certain kind of affirmation. It’s as though these qualities I know about myself became more true, because now I am aware of constantly wearing them. I was also struck by learning that our hands will reflect a change in mentality, however subtle or severe. I am completely in awe of the work he does and I really appreciate his sharing it with me.” Amalia W.

“It was a real pleasure working with Mark. He brought incredible insight and intuition to the table, without any presumption. I left feeling as though he had known me for years, better than many good friends, and that the knowledge of me that he had propelled me into a greater understanding of myself. As if that wasn’t enough, he also helped me to think about real, practical things that I could do on a day-to-day basis to encourage my personal growth. I recommend Mark very highly, I am sure you will not be disappointed.” Talya H.

“Without Mark’s guidance over the past few years, I would’ve had a much harder time figuring out my life – in particular, my career path and relationships. He was able to help me see what I didn’t yet know was there – or what I was avoiding looking at – and find a way to approach it with intelligence and grace. Not everyone can say they have a legit Hand Reader on their side, but I feel so lucky to be someone who does. I highly recommend Mark — His multi-faceted, intuitive approach will blow your mind and get you back to yourself so that you can live how you’re meant to. Thanks for everything, Mark!”  Jess G.

“For the past 4 years, Mark has provided me with extraordinarily valuable palm, astrology and tarot readings. Mark has been a guiding light in my personal and professional life, providing insight to make the most of the situations at hand. When I am at a crossroads, this is where I turn for unbiased yet nurturing perspective.” Laura W.

“Thoughtful, inspired, just. Mark is not only a consummate scholar of astrology, tarot and palmistry; he is intuitive in his scholarship. He meets you with an open mind and heart to deliver uncanny insights and doable suggestions for your growth. Life is an unfolding process and his art is all about nurturing your dreams with focus and hard work so that you can realize the auguries in the stars.” Randolyn Z.

“So this fascinating gentleman sits in my class one day and while we’re discussing a whole other topic he reveals he is a Palmist. I sit w/him first at a lecture as his volunteer for hand analysis then seriously as a client. What can I say but: Go see this man, Mark Seltman, I promise you will not be disappointed. Informative, insightful, intelligent articulate, accurate, amazing.” Pattie C.

“Mark has worked with me personally as an interpreter of my and my family’s hands and he has also joined events we hosted for clients at VOGUE Magazine. I recommend him 100%. He is expert in palmistry and tarot and he is sensitive to his customers so that he interprets what he sees in a thoughtful and insightful way. There is nothing “magic” about what Mark does — it is truly all in your hands and in his ability to understand the individual he is helping. After so many years of working with Mark (over 10), he truly has become a trusted advisor and my admiration of him and his ability has only grown stronger.” Ann L.

Special Events

“I am a professional live event entertainment producer and Mark is the top of the top of readers based on client’s responses. He is a reader clients continue to see privately– guests feel transformed by his readings.” Tina B.

“Mark is easy going, great with clients and a wonderful entertainment option. I have hired him a number of times for corporate events and my clients from all over the world love him. Me too! Hire him and you won’t regret it.” Tricia M.

“Mark has done readings for my company and clients for over 20 years now. In a word, he is AMAZING!  He is intuitive, though provoking and lots of fun. An absolute treasure to add to any party or event! I can’t recommend him highly enough.” Michael Chaut, President, Magical Nights, Inc.

“I have known Mark for over 20 years and have found him to be excellent at his profession. He has shaped a widely unknown intuitive art form into a valuable reliable tool for many of his clients and has performed this service for many well-known celebrities and executives. I would highly recommend him to anyone looking for that additional piece of information.” Kit M.

“Thank you for doing a great job at our annual holiday party.  Everyone we spoke with said that you were right on target!  It was an enjoyable afternoon and by far the best entertainment we’ve had.  We think that you did a fantastic job and hope we have other events / occasions to use and recommend your services.” World Gold Council

“Thank you so much for the wonderful job you did at my party last week. You were a great hit with my guests and made the evening such fun.”   Martha Stewart

“Many thanks for being part of our event; everyone is still raving about you!” Jennifer Lanzarone / Condenast

“Many people were stunned by the deep insights; even the hardnosed senior executives were taken aback by Mark Seltman’s perceptive information”. R. Ross

I speak wherever and whenever I can. Here are some favorite responses.

Industrial Designers Society of America

Lower East Side Tenement Museum

National Design Museum

The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Art and Science

Amazon reviews

Press

Media

Volunteer Work

 

The Future of Hands ~ Books

Your character and corresponding destiny is incarnate in your hands. You don’t need to be an expert palmist or know millions of details to learn what you need to know about yourself from your hands. Asking the right questions and interpreting what you see in your hands is the challenge. As a palmist, I mostly address questions about relationships, career, health, children, and whether anything can done to be more fulfilled and happy.

Palmistry is not about ‘this detail means this and that detail means that’. A series of five workbooks should be created to address what matters. The content must be compelling; crafted with fascinating narrative and straightforward illustrations, handy diagrams, and blank pages where readers can participate in interpreting their own hands and issues.

I printed 500 copies of “Your Life is in Your Hands” before my child was born, almost a quarter of a century ago. I gave most of them away. I hoped to make palmistry more real for people by sharing my knowledge and experience as a serious professional palmist in NYC. I created ‘Real Palmistry’ (e-book), and ‘Hand Book’ (paperback) to inspire people to want to learn more. Very few people have read any of my books, despite my best efforts to market them. Perhaps I should have named them ‘Sun Sign Palmistry’ or Palmistry 101’. I’m not sure that would have made a difference. I have several books ready for publishing, but I’ve decided to wait until I’ve figured out the best way to do it. Meanwhile, here’s my latest book concept.

Five Volumes: 25,000 words each

Delivery: Book One: April 1, 2017

Other four: Every six months following.

Ideal Format: Workbook ~ 8 1/2 X 11 to allow full size hand prints and charts.

BOOK ONE

WHAT’S IN A HAND?

 Your life is in your hands

The key to knowing and unlocking your potentials is in your hands. Reading hands (palmistry) helps you know and understand your character. Gain insight into your physical, mental, and emotional attributes, major influences which affect your life, and degrees to which you are fulfilling your potentials. Hands disclose information about your basic character, values, intelligence, emotions, health and healing abilities, career aptitudes, relationship capabilities and limitations, spirituality, creativity, and intuition. Your hands are topographical maps of your past and present and furnish valuable information and insights into possible future events and trends.

While other symbolic systems such as astrology and numerology show a person’s potentials, palmistry shows what a person is actually doing with those potentials. The value of reading hands lies in the capacity to objectify our personality traits and internal struggles. Knowing our natural strengths and weaknesses can help us avoid the hazards of our negative personality patterns. We can embrace our positive potentials. The beauty of hand analysis is our hands change as our thinking and circumstances change. As we exercise our free will and alter our thinking, our changes will manifest themselves in our hands over time. As we influence our destiny, we get to observe our successes and failures reflected in the mirrors of our hands. I’ve observed noticeable changes in hands in a matter of weeks.

My ultimate goal is to turn everyone on to palmistry. I hope to shed the light of day on hands and transform the paradigm of palmistry as a gypsy fortune telling scam. I want to share my unique methods for observing the essence of a person before getting caught up in superfluous details. I want to address frequently asked questions including: Will I be happy? Will I find my soul mate? Can you tell me about past lives? What career should I be in? Do you ever read yourself? What can and cannot be seen in the hands?” I want to share stories of people who transformed their lives, incorporating `before and after’ hand prints and interpretations. I’ll include examples of celebrities including actors, musicians, sports figures, politicians, religious figures, business people, and maybe a terrorist or two.

People can benefit by learning to observe and understand themselves, their talents, positive potentials, and limitations. Most people can learn to read hands.

                                                              BOOK TWO

                                                             HOLDING HANDS

                                 A Guide to Hand Analysis and Palmistry for Lovers

Relationship compatibility is my all-time favorite application of palmistry. Examining the hands of two people together reveals the strengths and weaknesses of that relationship. Healthy compromises can be unveiled within minutes of observing both sets of hands. By examining hands of couples, I can instantly see ways of improving their relationships.

We don’t have to look any farther than the ends of our arms to identify our relationship potentials. While examining our hands, we can gain insight into our sexuality, ability to trust and have real intimacy, and our emotionality. We often experience challenges because of conflicts within ourselves. Why do we choose insecurity over security? Why abuse over nurturing? Why guilt and obligation over freedom and fun-loving?

Who are you attracted to and why? What kind of person are you likely to marry? What kinds of relationships will you have with your families, friends, and neighbors? Examine your hands and your partner’s hands and see where compromise is possible and where it’s not.

BOOK THREE

TAKE MY HAND

A Look at your Child’s Future through Palmistry

Children’s hands change dramatically during the first five years of life. It’s no surprise they’re called “formative years”. Reading your child’s hands puts your own needs under the microscope. By knowing your children’s natural potentials, talents, and abilities, you can encourage and guide them in their natural directions. No matter what age, your child’s hands can help you understand his or her real needs and concerns. Knowing children’s hands helps them choose an educational plan, career direction, and ultimately a life direction. Learning to read hands will teach you to be more patient and tolerant.

I lent a helping hand to deliver my child at birth. I pulled her body from my wife’s womb and cut her umbilical cord. Joanna was blown away that I was reading our baby’s hands before knowing what sex she was. Her beautiful little hands already had a story to tell with tales that lie ahead, her character, strengths, weaknesses, talents, goals, and dreams. On closer scrutiny of her tiny hands, I felt confused and disturbed. Joanna and I have long heart lines (romantic, sentimental, and needing to express our feelings). Our daughter’s was short (serious, untrusting, and unable to verbalize feelings). Her index finger was also short which symbolized future problems with self-esteem. Her first two years of life were characterized by fear, lack of trust, and clinginess. Joanna and I imagined she must have had horrible role models in a past life and we were determined to transform that. Armed with foresight, we loved, respected, nurtured, and helped her unfold as who she wanted and needed to be. Our decision and commitment empowered her to lengthen her index finger and grow her heart line longer during her formative years. Self-assured, fiercely independent, healthy, and happy, she no longer has problems expressing herself.

Did you ever hear or say “I don’t want to make the same mistakes on my kids as my parents made on me”. The best way to avoid that is to learn to read your child’s hands.

BOOK FOUR

SHAKE HANDS

A Hand Analyst’s Guide to Business and Career

I’ve seen headlines and advertisements in newspapers such as the National Enquirer like “YOUR HAND HOLDS THE SECRET TO LOTTERY MILLIONS”, or “A FORTUNE MAY BE HIDING IN THE PALM OF YOUR HAND”. These are sensational scams. Your fortune truly is no farther than the end of your arms. That’s the irony. Our hands carry out the messages of ours mind. They also reveal our nature. Career choices, work styles, and even success and failure are natural predispositions to specific types. Understand the type and you will understand the corresponding career capabilities and challenges.

We will cover work and career issues for all twelve types. An examination of fingers is key to pinpointing a person’s profession or work. Case histories and illustrations are essential to understanding how myriad details affect the whole picture.

BOOK FIVE

HEALTHY HANDS

Healing Yourself and Others through Palmistry

People are naturally predisposed to specific health problems. Understand the character and you’ll understand the potential health problems. Readily identify character through the shape and proportions of hands. Fingers, their lengths, proportions, shapes of tips, knots, and nails reveal how we relate to our world. The consistency of our hands, along with the color, texture, and elasticity of our skin shows the kind of energies we have to work with. Lines provide insight into the directions, qualities, and details of our life choices and circumstances. Gestures reveal attitudes in the moment. All factors help us to know our physical, mental, and emotional selves, and how we are fulfilling our potentials.

In the days before computerized medical diagnosis, doctors used their intuition, tasted a patient’s urine, looked into their eyes, and examined the tongue, skin, and especially the hands to diagnose illness. Dozens of illnesses can be diagnosed from fingernails, which are considered windows to health. Some health problems which can be diagnosed by studying nails are: anemia, thyroid disease, malnutrition, carpal tunnel syndrome, psoriasis and eczema, disease of the liver, heart, lungs, or colon, chronic respiratory disease, lymph system problems, diabetes, Raynaud’s disease, high blood pressure, rheumatoid arthritis, ulcers, Hodgkin’s disease, and sickle-cell anemia. Diseases such as stress related problems and some types of cancer can be seen in finger prints and skin ridge patterns (dermatoglyphics). Lines in hands can indicate conditions of the heart, brain, kidneys, liver, stomach, and male and female systems.

Hands Columns

Character of the Month

twelve hands

 

The archetypes that our hands embody are metaphors for our corresponding personality traits. Our inner and outer characters and the internal and external dramas they play out embody our positive and negative potentials. By knowing the myths of our archetypes, we can understand what kind of person we tend to marry; what kinds of relationships we have with our families, friends, and neighbors; what work we are likely to choose; whether we will be rich or poor; and even what kinds of potential health problems we may have. Armed with knowledge and insight, we can employ our free will to embrace the positive aspects of our characters in order to revise our hands and restage a bad script in our lives. We can choose the right kinds of people and roles for ourselves. Click on the hands below for a full description of each type.

Greek and Roman and contemporary fairy tale characters will be explored. Superficial profiles of twelve fairy tale heroines have been used as illustrations for the purpose of elucidating this idea. Copyright permissions would be required for mass publishing.

belle-hand

April / Aries ~ Belle (Beauty)

 belle

As an adventurous, independent, and freedom loving type, Belle makes up her mind and fearlessly pursues her desires. Her impatience and impulsiveness get her in trouble as she instinctively charges forward. Belle becomes bored and restless when she gets caught up in mundane details. She needs to grasp the whole picture. Ultimately, she somehow manages to turn a beast into a prince.

princess-jasmine-hand

May / Taurus ~ Princess Jasmine

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Princess Jasmine is practical, responsible, reliable, dependable, charming, and affectionate. She’s also stubborn and obstinate and doesn’t like change. She enjoys good food, comfortable surroundings, art, music, and sensual pleasures. She’s attracted to Aladdin (Aries) types because they spice up her fantasy life, but in real life, she knows they don’t make the best long term partners for her.

pippi-longstocking-hand

June / Gemini ~ Pippi Longstocking

pippi-longstocking

Pippi is smart and very clever. Her restless nature ensures she’s always on the go. She’s fiercely independent and unafraid to speak her mind. She can conjure up a reason or rationalization for almost anything. Adaptable to all circumstances, Pippi is elusive when anyone tries to pin her down. Her animus is Peter Pan.

snow-white-hand

July / Cancer ~ Snow White

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Snow White is soft and emotionally vulnerable. Controlling or overprotective mothers compel her to become over-sensitive and emotionally cautious. She does her best to avoid confrontation and repress difficult feelings. Cutting ties with controlling females helps her become healthier and happier. She’s a great friend once trust is earned.

goldilocks-hand

August / Leo ~ Goldilocks

goldilocks

Goldilocks loves being center of attention. She wants to be adored and worshipped and can be a drama queen. She needs to be appreciated and must never be taken for granted. Pure types may have fathers who were emotionally or physically absent during their formative years. Goldie craves healthy male role models, but attracts fixer-uppers. Because she so stubbornly fights change, she must learn to recognize that when the bears come home, it’s time to let go.

cinderella-hand

September / Virgo ~ Cinderella

cinderella

Cinderella is a practical hard working type. Discriminating, meticulous, and orderly, she needs to feel useful. She’s service oriented, often straightening up other’s messes. She can be overly fastidious and critical sometimes. She’s a good communicator who needs to be valued and appreciated for her integrity. Though her work is often mundane and her rewards meager, Cinderella needs to cherish whatever she earns.

sleeping-beauty-hand

October / Libra ~ Sleeping Beauty

sleeping-beauty

Sleeping Beauty searches for balance. She loves harmony, fears discord, and is often indecisive as a result. She can be charismatic and beautiful. She seeks her Prince Charming to help her feel complete, but needs to see him for who he is and not who she wants him to be. Unfortunately, there are way too many frogs and beasts out there and very few princes ready, willing, or able to save her.

little-red-riding-hood-hand

November / Scorpio ~ Little Red Riding Hood

little-red-riding-hood

Little Red Riding Hood has powerful emotions and a strong sense of purpose. She’s imaginative, captivating, and resourceful. You’re happy being yourself when you’re with her. When she truly wants something, she manages to get it one way or another. She has a mysterious dark side that attracts and is tempted by Big Bad Wolves who desire to corrupt her feigned innocence.

alice-in-wonderland-hand

December / Sagittarius ~ Alice in Wonderland

alice-in-wonderland

Alice is a traveler and philosopher.  She’s friendly, sincere, optimistic, and open minded. She loves her freedom and needs a lot of space to explore her ideas and environment. Alice has a tendency to see life through rose colored glasses. She must take care not to be overly opinionated, judgmental, or self-indulgent.

malificent-hand

January / Capricorn ~ Maleficent

malificent

It’s not easy to find a positive female fairy tale character that’s pragmatic, ambitious, structured, disciplined, and focused. Capricorn types are planners who make it to the top of whatever field of interest they choose. As serious withholding types, their dark side is frequently represented by Scrooge like characters that are cold, selfish, and rigid. Maleficent is Capricorn with strong Scorpio backup. Her dark side is depressive and diabolical; she’s a person who plans carefully and tries to avoid the negative consequences of her evil actions. These types are late bloomers. They get younger while their peers get older.

pocohantas-hand

February / Aquarius ~ Pocahontas

pocohantas

Pocahontas is outgoing, progressive, independent, and revolutionary.  As a community minded individual, she loves in a kind of detached way. Her unconventional freedom loving nature can get her into awkward situations. Spending much time in her private world of ideas and inventions, she prides herself on being unique and eccentric. She’s opinionated, but makes an exciting friend.

ariel-hand

March / Pisces ~ Little Mermaid

ariel

Ariel is the most sensitive and least acquisitive of all types. Capable of incredible foresight, she’s often misunderstood when she conveys her spiritual visions to others. It’s not easy for others to let go and take a leap of faith. Ariel can swim anywhere in the ether and dream whatever she pleases. She must be sure not to escape from reality and must also watch out for Ursula the Octopus who wants to possess her.

Hands of the Month

twelve hands

Stories of individuals whose corresponding character and career matches the nature of their hands and astrological sign of the month. Applicable themes will be covered:

MONTH                                              CAREER                                           ESOTERIC

April                                                    Sports                                                 Character

May                                                     Banking                                             Values

June                                                   Education                                          Thinking

July                                                     Psychology                                       Feeling

August                                               Acting                                                 Will Power

September                                         Medicine                                            Health

October                                              Law                                                     Partnerships

November                                          Sex / Death                                       Creativity

December                                          Politics                                               Philosophy

January                                             Career                                                Purpose

February                                            Technology                                       Dreams

March                                                 Religion                                             Spirituality

 

Philosophical & Spiritual Advice Column

mark-holding-up-hands

Readers send in hi-resolution pictures of their faces and hands and ask personal questions to be answered by a master palmist from practical, philosophical, and spiritual perspectives. Questions such as, “How can I…?” or “What can I do to…?” are better than “What’s going to happen?”  Queries requiring yes or no answers will be rejected. I’d like to write this column if I can find the right venue and way to market the project. Ideas?

Stay tuned for modern palmistry book concepts.

Palmistry ~ Creating the Future

your-life-is-in-your-hands-copy

Here’s the paradox. Palmistry is a simple and fun way of knowing self and other and most people are clueless to the realities incarnate in our hands. Our hands provide priceless validation, precious insight, and valuable tools for us to interact and get to know ourselves and others better. Illuminating the ancient science and art of palmistry and making it real for the masses has been like prying a glimmer of light from a 5,500 year old rusty dungeon door with a pen light and a pair of tweezers. In hindsight, I’ve tried to promote palmistry many ways, but have never gone deeply enough with anything.

The value of palmistry is in being able to readily recognize basic character traits and motivations. The beauty of palmistry is that once we understand our strengths and weaknesses; we can alter our thinking, exercise our free will, and transform negative thought patterns into positive behavioral patterns. The magic of palmistry is that hands change as thinking and circumstances change. Our successes and failures transform the morphology and topography of our hands over time. A tiny change in the direction or quality of a line can symbolize a huge change in a life.

How do we turn the multitudes on to palmistry? There’s no one answer, but a good way to start is to influence the influencers. Palmistry needs support from major players with huge followings. Initially, a large metaphysical community can be enlisted. Well-crafted essays and compelling columns can be published in venues alongside astrology, numerology, tarot, and other esoteric subjects. Palmistry classes and workshops can be offered at Omega and Esalen institutes, Kripalu Center, Kepler College, and Naropa University. Esoteric thinkers and spiritual seekers will fall in love with palmistry once they ‘get it’.

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We must convince thought leaders to place their hands in the gauntlet of palmistry. I’ve read Martha Stewart’s hands on her show and Star Jones on ‘The View’. That was a good start, but just the tip of the iceberg. Imagine Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Bill Maher, Charlie Rose, and Bill Moyers turned on to hands. What about John Maxwell, Ken Blanchard, or Anthony Robbins? How about Terri Gross or Krista Tippett? How much awareness would Deepak Chopra and Marianne Williamson generate? Palmistry could use a Ted Talk. Celebrity is credibility. Influencers influence. You get the point.

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oprahOprah’s love of Dr. Phil launched a fabulous career for him in a very short period of time. I wanted to meet Oprah and asked my friends if they knew anyone who knew anyone who knew her. I ended up at lunch with a former editor-in-chief of ‘O’ Magazine. Seemed like a good start. I figured she’d introduce me to her ex-boss after we talked about her hands. My new friend loved her reflection; however, she had introduced Oprah to James Frey. Oprah loved, and then hated him. My contact had retired from editing and told me that she would never again introduce Oprah to anyone. We parted on a friendly note. I’d have to figure out some other way to connect with Oprah. I haven’t tried.

Ideas are a dime a dozen. The work is hard. There’s a glut of information out there. In my experience, it’s easier to buy than sell. I usually accomplish more on my dime, but what’s the best way to spend it? Advertising is a hook. It’s a complete waste of time and money without the right bait (content or product) and an expert fisherman. Publicity is effective. It’s much less costly; however, an ocean of it is required to make a difference. Social networking requires endless time, persistence, and discipline. I don’t enjoy any of it. At nearly seventy, I’d rather be on my mountain bike in the forest or kayaking in a lagoon.

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I had hoped to find solidarity and support in the palmistry community. Instead, I found deafening silence, pettiness, jealousy, competitiveness, defensiveness, obsession with irrelevant details, and a desperate need to be smart, clever, and right. It’s challenging finding palmists who are supportive of my quest to popularize palmistry. I share my ideas and plans with a small palmistry forum of 120 members (The Profitable Palmist). Luckily, I have strong support from the astrology and psychology communities. After 5,500 years in obscurity, it’s time for hands to be seen in the light of truth. People should be asking “May I see your hands?” in addition to “What’s your sun sign?”

Palmistry should have its very own ‘Popular Palmistry’ magazine. Remember ‘Popular Mechanics’ and ‘Popular Science’? They’re still popular. ‘Popular Palmistry’ can be printed in full color on the same stock as other popular magazines. ‘Popular Palmistry’ would feature articles on the science of palmistry, new ways to see hands and understand what to do with what you see, interviews with palmists, palmistry stories, info about palmistry schools, events, books, world news, and definitely a handy advice column.

dell-horoscopeSuccessful magazines need devoted editors. Dell Horoscope published one of the first popular astrology magazines. It’s still thriving thanks to a passionate and dedicated editor-in-chief, Ronnie Grishman. As a competent astrologer and a respected member of the astrological community, Ronnie has maintained quality content, integrity, reputation, and found clever ways to satisfy both professionals and novices. A healthy magazine is a healthy family. Most successful magazines include specialized departments with individual editors. Expert authors share their understanding and experience with a generosity of spirit. Everyone contributes what they can. What’s your contribution? Do you have something valuable to share? Can you write an article about what you do and how you do it?

Who will inspire the influencers? Hopefully, we will. I’m investing my time and energies in serving my existing clients and thinking critically about the future of palmistry these days. Everything about everyone is in their hands. Here are some ideas I’ve come up with for publishing powerful palmistry content and generating the most interest with the least effort and resistance. Feel free to adapt my ideas to your expertise and skill set. Don’t be afraid to run your ideas past me before you query editors. I’ll be happy to lend a helping hand on healthy concepts and innovative ideas and collaborate on meaningful projects.

The following is a diverse list of two dozen leading consumer magazines, along with suggestions for articles. There are many more and you can use your imagination. I list print circulation by subscription. Many also have online subscriptions. In their media kits, some magazines claim that a dozen or more people read each copy. More issues are sold individually at newsstands. There are hundreds of sheltered magazines that are good venues for palmistry articles as well. Here’s a link to articles I’ve been featured in.

Magazine                  Circulation               Feature Article

AARP Magazine        23,000,000+              Hands of people who ‘made it’ after fifty

Family Circle               4,000,000+               Hands and heredity

People                         3,400,000+               Hands of celebrities (weekly)

Woman’s Day              3,200,000+               Hands of successful women

Sports Illustrated         3,000,000+               Hands of famous athletes

Time                             3,000,000+               Hands around the world

Reader’s Digest           3,000,000+               Secrets of a master palmist

Cosmopolitan               3,000,000+               You got the guy in the palm of your hand

Shape                           2,500,000+               Your nature is in your hands

Glamour                        2,300,000+               Glamorous hands

Parents                         2,200,000+               How to read your children’s hands

American Baby             2,000,000+               How to read your baby’s hands

Seventeen                    2,000,000+               Hands of famous teens

InStyle                          1,700,000+               high five

Money                          1,500,000+               Your wealth is in your hands

TV Guide                      1,500,000+               Emmy award winning hands

Women’s Health           1,500,000+               Your health is in your hands

Self                               1,500,000+               Your life is in your hands

Ebony                           1,200,000+               Hands of famous African Americans

The New Yorker           1,000,000+               Hands of interesting New Yorkers

Fortune                          800,000+                 Your fortune is in your hands

Psychology Today         275,000+                 Your personality is in your hands

Back Stage                    60,000+                   The perfect role is in your hands

Jobs and Careers                ?                        Your purpose is in your hands

Stay tuned for column ideas in my next post…

Publicity Stories #5 ~ Radio & TV

I was first interviewed on radio in 1986, a few years prior to the Village Voice feature. WNYC Radio asked me to explain palmistry to their listeners for thirty minutes. I was nervous, but knowing I wouldn’t be seen alleviated my biggest fears. As an NPR affiliate, WNYC generated interest in Boston, Chicago, Albuquerque, Houston, and other cities.

frankie-boyerI’ve had many radio interviews since WNYC. One challenge is that if you have nothing to sell, there’s no way to make $. Even if you have something of value, a lot of people must see it and recognize you. I was interviewed by Frankie Boyer numerous times. Frankie promoted my book during the show. It didn’t translate into book sales. I believed Frankie was the perfect venue for me: syndicated in thirty major cities, Frankie interviewed Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dwyer, John Gray, Dr. Oz, Suzanne Somers, and other thought leaders. Her listeners seemed perfect for palmistry and me. I was wrong. I mostly got inquiries from other media looking for stories. My publicist friend who introduced me to Frankie told me it can take as many as fifty radio interviews before listeners respond.

patti-canovaI prefer smaller venues. My all-time favorite tarot teacher and friend, Patti Canova, hosts a radio show she calls ‘Got a Lite’. How many people are actually listening is hard to know, but shows are recorded and archived online, so fans and friends can hear them anytime. I’ve been on Patti’s show several times. She’s got a loyal following. When Patti says, “Mark is great” or “You need to go see this man”, listeners listen. I got friend requests, likes, follows, links, shares, and a few readings from being on her show. Link to my first show.

anthony-piccoI was interviewed for ninety minutes on a show called ‘Cosmic Tuesdays’ that airs on Monday nights. Anthony Picco, a knowledgeable astrologer with a personable interviewing style, blends the esoteric with the practical in the electronic ether for an earful. Link

bliem-kernTV intimidates me. Appearing on screens has its drawbacks. Viewers can see your awkwardness and self-consciousness. Mistakes are permanent and not easily forgotten (mostly by you). Watching yourself afterwards is sobering. “If only I had done or not done…” I spent my first hour on TV with Bliem Kern on ‘Satellite Psychic’. Bliem’s quirky humor and casual informative style made it easy for me to be myself. We joyfully shared our metaphysical ideas and experience on the air.

 

patti-davisBack in 1994, I read Patti Davis on Lifetime TV, on the same day she came out on the cover of Playboy magazine. We sat apart in ‘the green room’, waiting to go on the show. A frustrated stylist was unsuccessfully trying to put makeup on me while Patti was ignoring me. When the producer walked in, she introduced us. “Patti, I want you to meet Mark. He’ll be reading your hands on the show.” Instantly, Patti was kneeling beside me with her hands in my face. “My family loves this stuff!” We talked about what it was like living with Ron and Nancy Reagan. The first thing the two chatty hosts asked me, “Well Mark, what’s in Patti’s hands that we haven’t already seen?” They made jokes about everything I said. By the middle of the show, I regretted doing it, though I was glad to have met and read Patti.

guru-of-garbageI’d never merged design with metaphysics before now. Combining them turned out better than expected. I was the “Guru of Garbage” on Fox ‘Good Day New York’ and a successful industrial eco-designer who creates new products from recycled materials on Japanese WOWOW TV. My esoteric and environmental worlds were beginning to morph into a new physical and metaphysical awareness.

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Martha Stewart threw an exclusive millennium party at the ‘Four Seasons’ in NYC for celebrities, super stars, and other notables. The theme was metaphysics and Martha’s guests could have quickie counseling sessions with master astrologers, palmists, and tarot readers. I got to read the hands of some of my favorite personal heroes. The other palmist and several other readers had published many more books than me, but I had the longest line of celebrities waiting for their reflections.

Martha’s producer called me later to schedule a palmistry segment for CBS ‘Martha Stewart Living’ for April 2001. Martha’s TV studio had state of the art technology, great food, and a lot of hip well paid young professionals running around making sure all things are perfect at all times. I’d heard Martha was a cold task-master, but in person, she was charming and gracious. She has high expectations and truly wants to offer her viewers the most elegant and sensible solutions to whatever crafts, activities, and challenges she’s choosing to illuminate at the moment. In hindsight, I wished I’d done a better job explaining palmistry to her viewers. You can read more about my reading of Martha’s hands here and watch my favorite minute of my segment on her show here.

mark-meredith-joy-debbie-and-star

After appearing on Martha’s show, I was nervous that people would recognize me on the street. Fortunately, I don’t think many New Yorkers watch her show. The next call I got was from the producer of ABC ‘The View’. She was planning ‘The View from Beyond’ and was lining up a week’s worth of the best esoteric readers she could find. She wanted me to be the guest palmist and promised that I could present palmistry in whatever way I chose. My problem was that while Martha Stewart’s show was taped and edited, ‘The View’ was live. I could be put on the defensive or get stuck with an awkward question I couldn’t answer and be embarrassed. She assured me the show would go smoothly. It actually went really well until Star Jones inadvertently put me on the defensive. “Well Mark; tell me something the audience doesn’t know about me.” Click here to see the look in her eyes as I respond to her question.

I’d never watched ‘Martha Stewart Living’ or ‘The View’ before they called me. I had no idea how many people watched those shows, but assumed the largest audiences for daytime network TV were suburban housewives and unemployed people. Many more strangers recognized me from my appearance on ‘The View’ than from Martha’s show.

mark-joanna-and-cassie-as-a-newborn2The next call I received was from a producer at AOL in collaboration with Huffington Post. They produced a popular video series called ‘You’ve Got’ which was promoted on AOL. A substantial crew of videographers, lighting experts, and stylists showed up at our little east village apartment with a ton of video equipment. A whole afternoon was spent shooting a 2 ½ minute segment entitled ‘You’ve Got Mark Seltman and Joanna Brotman’. The video was all about how I chose to marry Joanna because of her hands and how reading hands has affected our marriage. This short segment got well over a million views within hours of posting.

Since that time, I’ve been approached by a variety of Cable TV producers with reality TV show ideas. I haven’t said ‘yes’ to anything. I do believe the timing is right for the right metaphysical show. Everyone is searching for answers and many people are turning to metaphysics with questions.  I’d love to participate in something meaningful, but everything I’ve seen so far has been more like a ‘circus’ or ‘dog and pony show’. I have no desire to become the Jerry Springer or Maury Povich of metaphysics.

Publicity Stories #4 ~ Books

Since I began practicing palmistry professionally in the late ‘70’s, people have asked, “Have you written a book?” or “Why haven’t you written a book?” or “When are you going to write your book?” or “How can I learn to read hands?” I’d reply, “I’m working on it”. I had no interest in writing another palmistry cookbook, wasting trees, or ending up on some obscure bottom shelf in bookstores along with the worst selling astrology, tarot, and occult divination books. In my opinion, the literature of palmistry is the number one reason palmistry is misunderstood and unpopular. I’ve read almost everything ever written on the subject. I can think of one palmistry book that was actually fun to read ‘Confessions: Memoirs of a Modern Seer’ (collection of sensational personal palmistry stories). Not a ‘how to’ book, Cheiro’s melodramatic content and theatrical writing style made it impossible to navigate the blurry boundaries between truth and fiction.

your-life-is-in-your-hands-copy

Reading Cheiro inspired me to write ‘Your Life is in Your Hands’ in 1990. I decided to share my personal experience as an expert palmist and throw in enough ‘how to’ to inspire readers to want to learn more. I printed a few hundred copies and gave them to friends, family, and peers in the metaphysical world. My creation received plenty of praise, along with a healthy dose of criticism. Readers were excited to learn more about their hands, but confused about what to do next. I know from personal experience that it’s easier to learn from teachers than books. I had no desire to teach again. I decided to let go of writing books until I could figure out how to do it better.

Most palmistry books are cookbooks full of unrelated ingredients and unreliable recipes passed down for generations. The illustrations and the content are an unappetizing smorgasbord of poorly mixed details. This detail means this and that detail means that. The truth is that every detail must be examined in the context of the whole and all other details at the same time. All questions are in every detail and all details are in every answer. The danger in interpreting details out of context is in substituting one form of pre-determinism for another by reducing individuality to formulas. Sadly, that’s why so many palmistry books are like junk food for the mind.

In fairness to some modern palmistry authors, there are a few books I recommend. I devoted this blog post to the subject. I’m adding the science of fingerprints. ‘Life Prints’ by Richard Unger and other books by dermatoglyphic protégé’s are among the only original palmistry thinking in the past century. The most recent book I read was ‘The Art and Science of Hand Reading’ by Ellen Goldberg & Dorian Bergen. It’s the best “William Benham” upgrade I’ve come across. It’s fun to read if you love reading encyclopedias. As a textbook, it should be required reading for all western palmistry students.

Over the years, free-lance authors asked me to co-author esoteric books with them. I declined because I never felt the right chemistry with anyone. I’m happy to contribute to someone’s effort, but not to their speculation. I take my own calculated risks. When I examined Maurice Sendak’s hands, I asked him if he’d like to collaborate with me on a children’s palmistry book. I knew it would be an automatic winner. I visualized palmistry as finally out of the closet and seen as a valid portal to self and other. He declined, saying it was an interesting idea, but he was too old to work on anyone else’s project.

I’d been in books before like “Who’s who in the East” (for my industrial design work) where publishers honor you, and then encourage you to purchase expensive beautifully bound books and give them to your family, friends, and for promotional purposes. It’s risk free for them and very profitable when you pay to play.

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It wasn’t until 1995 when I met Patricia Collins that I decided to be featured in a book again. Patricia was searching for the best esoteric readers in NYC. I was one of them. I recommended several friends, peers, and colleagues who are also in the book. Most major players know each other as metaphysics is a small world. Local books are best for local business, like newspapers and magazines. They generally have a shelf life of a year or two. You’ll find them on Amazon after that. If the content and artwork is laudable, you can increase your shelf life by speaking and promoting yourself on social networks.

I got a lot of calls from ‘Psychic New York’ the first year and still get occasional calls twenty years later. Although my prices have doubled, no one questions my cost.
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In 2002, I was interviewed by another New York author. ‘Esoteric Guide to New York’ was similar to ‘Psychic New York’ with more new age practitioners and shorter blurbs. I liked my write-up. They called me “The Mozart of palm readers”. I got a lot of business from that venue and still get sporadic readings from infrequent queries, although I get more from ‘Psychic New York’, even though it’s even more dated.

The 100 Top Psychics and Astrolgers in America

Many authors self-appoint themselves as experts and talented researchers. We assume that if it looks valid in print, it probably is. That’s not true. I believe the goal of this author was to find 100 popular readers with enough of a following that the author could sell an additional 10,000 books. She assumed readers would buy a bunch for family, friends, and to promote themselves. I told her that I was a counselor who uses symbolism, not ‘a psychic’.  She promised to give me my own category. My interview felt shallow.

It should be a big deal to be one of 100 in America, right? When the book came out, I wasn’t pleased with the quality of the printing or the content. I ended up not buying any books and only owning the free copy she promised with the interview. I think the other readers may have felt similarly. If you don’t promote the venue you’re in, it won’t fly. I didn’t. My one percent is sitting on a shelf somewhere gathering dust at the moment.

Real Palmistry

Around June of 2012, I decided to try again. Everyone was writing e-books. That made a lot of sense to me. I created ‘Real Palmistry’. I included content from ‘Your Life is in Your Hands’ (subtitle of all my books), plus I added over twenty years’ experience to the mix. It would be full color, provide plenty of thought-provoking links, and cost consumers only $4. I could promote it on social networks, pay for e-releases, and do radio interviews. I spent a few hundred dollars sending out press releases and was amazed at the stunning lack of response. Markets for e-books seemed saturated. A burgeoning glut of authors was ‘out there’ touting their book as the next best thing since the bible.

Hand Book

I tried selling ‘Real Palmistry’ to the metaphysical community. Many people wrote back and asked ‘when I was going to create a real book?’ Many esoteric people are living in an earlier era. They needed a paperback. I created a print version of ‘Real Palmistry’ and called it ‘Hand Book’. It was black and white, didn’t have links, artwork was straight from the e-book at 72 dpi (poor print quality), and cost $10.95 (three times as much as the e-book). I printed several hundred copies to give away and sell at the back of the room at my speaking engagements. I placed them in local bookstores and cafes on consignment.

Everyone was saying how important reviews were. In a short time, ‘Hand Book’ had more legitimate five-star reviews than any other palmistry book on Amazon. My best reviews were unsolicited. Here’s one of my favorites from someone who really got me. Reviews haven’t produced sales. I’ve sold around a thousand books. Writing has been a satisfying avocation, but not a profitable vocation. I’ve written other books I’d like to publish, but am holding off until I can figure out a better way of putting them out.

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On another note, many years ago, I spent two days a week for two years getting to know over 150 serial killers, murderers, and violent criminals in a forensic psychiatric hospital. I examined their hands, cast their astrology, and threw the tarot for them. I decided to transform my incredible experience into a novel. There are eight episodes of ‘How I Lost my Sanity’ on my blog. Here’s the first episode. Click forward for the other seven. I stopped writing when my tale became too dark to publish alongside my non-fiction work.

Publicity Stories #3 ~ New York Magazine

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Wealthy people and tourists look to New York Magazine to recommend NYC places, happenings, and people. No press to date has matched the publicity power of New York Magazine for my long term business. The Village Voice article was a wonderful introduction to the public. The New York Times feature was great for short term business. My little New York Magazine segment, ‘A Hands-On Approach’ has generated tens of thousands of dollars in private clients and special events over the years. New York Magazine archives articles online so whoever can search whenever for whatever.

nyt-millenium2One thing I didn’t mention in my previous publicity posts is that once you’ve been featured in a venue, they tend to return for various reasons. I’ve been featured in articles in the New York Times on several occasions. At the turn of the Millennium when everyone was panicking about Y2K and Armageddon, the Times ‘Week in Review’ called various ‘prognosticators’ to prognosticate about what was about to happen. I was the only one who was 100% accurate. I forecast that when we crossed the threshold to the year 2000, people would wake up, brush their teeth, and go to work.

the-cutNew York Magazine’s online venue ‘The Cut’, asked me to be their expert palmist for a sixteen page feature they called ‘16 Celeb Palm Readings, Annotated and Explained’. From the President to the Prince to the Pope to Angelina Joli and Justin Beiber, I analyzed hands of various celebrities (from photos).

Author’s note: no matter what I write, the editor always has the last word. The content I create is recrafted in the context, style, and language of a venue’s demographic.

downtown-magazineLocal press is the most financially productive publicity. ‘Time Out New York’ has featured me on several occasions. The most recent article was entitled ‘The best psychics in NYC’.

‘Downtown Magazine’ published a feature they entitled ‘Downtown’s Psychic Scene: A Promising Future’. I was very pleased with the article. It’s great when a journalist ‘gets it right’.

 

refinery-29My all-time favorite interview is five pages long and published by an online magazine ~ ‘Refinery 29’. They called it ‘Meet the Real-Deals of NYC Fortune Telling’.  The writer, Annie Greenberg, asked great questions, had a wonderful sense of humor, and totally got what I was saying. Unfortunately, the story came out near the end of August 2011 at the exact same time that Hurricane Irene struck NYC and the Northeast coast. Palmistry was the last thing on anyone’s mind. Fortunately ~ it’s always online. I’m still getting calls from searches. I also refer potential clients to the link when they inquire about what to expect from a consultation with me.

family-circleNational magazine coverage has been good for my ego, but hasn’t done a lot for my pocket book. I was thrilled when ‘Family Circle’ magazine called to interview me. Being featured in a two page article entitled ‘Palmistry’ seemed like a great opportunity to become recognized in the consumer mass market. It wasn’t.

modern-bride-3‘Modern Bride Magazine’ approached me with a unique four page feature they entitled ‘Hand in Hand’ ~ I read the hands of couples who were engaged and advised them about their partnership. Couples were able to critique my reading of them. It wasn’t all roses, but it was realistic and I was fine with that. That feature generated a few wedding showers and other party business.

kathy-najimyThe most productive national magazine for me was Instyle Magazine. I was asked to be their expert palmist for the first major national palmistry column that they entitled ‘high five’. At the time, all the major magazines and newspapers had astrology. No one had palmistry. Instyle wanted to separate themselves from their competition. They assigned me the last page of each issue to analyze a new celebrity hand each month. Check out these issues ~ Kathy Najimy (I got a warm thank you note from Kathy) and Joey Lawrence. Time Inc. publishes Instyle, along with ninety different magazines. I figured it was my golden opportunity to be a player in the magazine world. I loved working with my editor, Leah Rozen. We often joked about my initial analysis ~ especially about what we weren’t able to print. We worked closely to craft what we would say. People Magazine asked Leah to be their film critic and she jumped at the opportunity. That was the beginning of the end for me and ‘high five’.

instyleInstyle’s new editor and I didn’t see eye to eye. She told me that it was really hard to get celebrities to participate because they feared I was going to see things in their hands that they didn’t want anyone to see. I assured her that my interpretations would always be positive and constructive, but she cut the column from the magazine. I was hired on occasion to comment on celebrity hands and to work at celebrity parties for People Magazine.

Conde Nast has been one of my favorite clients for special events. I’ve worked at plenty of parties for Vogue, Glamour, Traveler, Architectural Digest, and others. I’ve read many of their top executives privately and am sometimes hired for their personal parties. I’ve pitched several column ideas to editors. Most recently I proposed a ‘Hands around the World’ column for Conde Nast Traveler after dazzling Glamour’s top advertisers at a private party at the publisher’s home.

There are many magazines dedicated to specific audiences. I’ve experimented with a variety of exclusive markets and am sharing my experiences here.

astrogirl2‘Astrogirl Magazine’ is a very superficial look at combining astrology and young celebrities for teens. Astrogirl hired me to analyze the hands and describe the personalities of the hottest young celebrity idols. They called it ‘Celeb Palm Readings’.

 

sharing-ideasI was trying to expand my speaking business and wrote an article for a national speaking magazine, ‘Sharing Ideas’, called ‘The Sale is in Your Hands’. I figured it would help me promote my speaking business, but it did nothing on its own. I included it in my press materials when I queried meeting planners and speaker bureaus and it gave me a little added credibility.

 

crush-fanzine‘CRUSH fanzine’ hired me to write a feature entitled ‘Palm Analysis’ about hands of well-known modern conceptual, visual, fashion, and performance artists. The editor emailed digital photos and scans (awful quality, no detail). I felt upset that I never got to review how my notes were edited before the article was published. The opening night party was a formal celebration. I got to read some of the people I had read remotely in the issue in person and found them different than my interpretation. I much prefer reading hands in person.

carnegie-mellon-magazineMy alma-mater, Carnegie Mellon University, is always searching for bragging rights for alumni. I think it was my first New York Times article that came across their search engines. In 1998, they contacted me and asked if they could feature me in the alumni magazine. I agreed. They sent a journalist from New York City, Judith Trojan, to interview me. Judith was thorough and professional. She wrote a three page feature they called, ‘Mark Seltman ~ A Work in Progress’ (my mate, Joanna, calls me ‘a piece of work in progress’) that appeared in Carnegie Mellon Magazine. The primary benefit of the article seemed to be that it reunited me with old college friends. I also discovered several alumni who had become friends over the years, but we never realized we shared the same college.