Indian Self Fulfilling Prophecies

Stars & Bhramani Kites

In a world where mouthy parrots 'reveal sex secrets', in India some prophetic ones reveal your future with a flick of their acicular beaks. Even the most practical Mumbaikers sometimes fall prey to the inevitable necessity of fatalism. From parrots to palmists to fortune telling robots to fortune cookie sized insights on your mobile phone all seem to feed on ones urge to explore the future tense. Nowadays, in an urban spread like Mumbai your traditional corner street palmist has given away to tarot card readers, clairvoyant computers, numerologists and even people who read your fortune in a cup of Turkish coffee.

Palmist Purple
[A "plamist" (spelling bottom right corner) consults a family. I think this picture would be brilliant for a 123 horoscope Hutch ad - all I would need is Rahul Dravid and a pug - I already have the pink.]

I'm sure many people in the audience would dismiss all this as balderdash but I feel there is more to it. No, I do not believe that anyone is actually capable of seeing the future. All I'm saying is that if a fortune teller is charismatic and experienced in human psychology they'll be able to do so to an accurate degree. After all a self fulfilling prophecy is a prophecy by itself.

Fortune Telling Robot.
[A fortune telling robot, you've probably seen this guy standing around Juhu Beach]

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jinal shah said...

Lovely photos.
I'd like to see you do a photo essay on street fashion in Bombay, if doesn't have any :s

Charu said...

A, you are so right... most often these "futurists" :) get their cues from their customers themselves... people reveal so much through their facial expressions and non verbal (or mild verbal) responses that these guys pick up and build on...

bluegreenflysplat said...

you know that robot always fascinated me. i think i'll have it tell me my future. so much potential, non?

niki yokota said...

awesome post, Ookshay!!(^o^)/
i was told by indian palmist that i will die suddenly. *tear*
charu is right. i dont believe them very much. hehe

Akshay said...

jinal - done, I'm a little off the weather this past week but I promise a post by end of the week.I've shortlisted Linking Road, Fashion Street, Bhendi Bazaar, Colaba Causeway ... any more suggestions.

charu - yes, they are skilled in telling their customer what they want. Also its very much true what people say about body 'language' being a language

bluegreenflysplat- they are fascinating, I want to buy a couple of them and place them on a canvas of some kind, they'll some artistic potential don't you think

niki - you've been reading Nick's blog haven't you. An Indian palmist told you that ? that's not a very nice thing to say.

niki yokota said...

yeah that mail from u was pretty funny!! thank u!!