Reading Tea Leaves
In the old days, a Romany woman would read a housewife’s tea leaves in exchange for a refreshing cuppa and a few old clothes. Sometimes a Gypsy Queen, dressed in her finest and laden with all her jewelry, would preside over a special tea-drinking party for a few favored clients. The best bone china and lace tablecloth would be brought out to impress upon the Rawnies (ladies) the importance of the occasion – and how privileged they were to be invited. No doubt the fee for the teacup-reading was suitably increased to fit the occasion.
It is not only tea leaves that can be used for this type of reading: coffee and cocoa grounds, or anything that leaves a sediment in the cup, can be used in the same way. If you prefer teabags, you can of course break open the bag before making the tea in the usual way. This should ensure that a good pattern is left in the cup, but if you do take the trouble to make a good old-fashioned pot of loose-leafed tea, you will also have the extra bonus of a truly satisfying taste.
One drawback with reading the teacups is that is is all too easy to fall into the habit of reading the cups at every tea break, which tends to belittle this method and turn it into a parlour game. But as long as it is used with respect it will give excellent results.
Most authorities state that the cup should be plain white and shallow, but I have never found that the shape of the cup was important, nor that a patterned cup adversely affected the reading. Indeed, Romanies have always disliked plain white china, preferring it to be richly decorated.
From Gypsy Magic by Patrinella Cooper
More information on Tea Leaf divination can be found here: Divination – Reading Tea Leaves
The enquirer should drink their tea until only a spoonful or so is left in the bottom of the cup. They should hold the cup in the left hand and swirl it around three times in an anti-clockwise direction, then turn it upside down to drain. The cup is then passed to the person who is to read it.
Prepare to do the reading by quietening the mind. Hold the cup with the handle in your right hand, or you can hold it in both hands if it feels more comfortable. The brain likes to make pictures out of abstract blobs, which is why we see faces in stained walls or castles in clouds. It is this principle that inspires the psyche to see omens in the tea leaves. Move the cup about if it helps you to see the patterns clearly. It can also help if you let your eyes go slightly out of focus.
The leaves should be read in a kind of spiral motion working anti-clockwise from the handle around the rim, back to the handle, then the sides, and finally the bottom of the cup. As a general rule, the nearer to the rim of the cup a symbol appears, the sooner the event will be. The larger the symbol, the greater will be the impact on the enquirer’s life.
From: Gypsy Magic
by Patrinella Cooper
More about reading tea leaves can be found here: Divination – Reading Tea Leaves