Graphology is a tool, used to determine the character of a person through his/her handwriting. Basically, this is divided into:
- Handwriting analysis
- Form Variance analysis
- Content analysis
Handwriting analysis itself, exists in two different forms
Form Variance analysis is, in very simple terms, the analysis of "why" a certain trait, suddenly, without any apparent reason, changed during the course of the person's writing the sample. For example, have a look at the sample below.
- Trait analysis
- Wholistic or "Gestalt" analysis
Trait analysis involves looking for certain visible indicators in the handwriting sample, which provide clues to the possible traits that might have caused to appear the way they do. For example, look at the handwriting of many a girl in her teens, and you will find that the letter "i", has a circle instead of a dot, on its top. This is a strong indicator of faddishness.
Wholistic or "Gestalt" analysis involves looking at the sample as a whole, and determining certain characteristics of the writer based on it. This involves looking at certain indicators as tangible as the layout(For example, does the left margin progress fast towards the right, or does it remain non-progressive?), to "looking" at factors as intangible as the Form level of the handwriting. Form level, in simple terms, is the quality of the handwriting.
This sample is written by a person who was feeling "homesick" and is here, describing the mountains in the country of her present residence, and then, goes on to compare these with those in her "home country". It doesn't require a genius to tell that the second paragraph is the one where she is talking of her home country. How? The "upbeat" mood, resulted in the lines to "climb". A similar and close observation of various characteristics and changes in them, helps determine a lot!
Content Analysis is about reading what is written, and deducing from that. For example, look at the sentences below.
A. ...because I played soccer, I got only 75% marks.
B. ...despite playing soccer, I got 75% marks.
It is obvious that person "A", is of the complaining type, and the person "B", has a positive outlook. It is very interesting to note how unequivocally, what the person has written, speaks about how he feels.
I got interested in Graphology during my stay at REC, Surathkal. I bought a few books on the subject (I deliberately left out the ones that "advertised" as: "Become the life of the party!!", or "Win friends!!" etc., because I was more interested in learning the subject, rather than doing any of the above).
I then joined a wonderful online discussion group for professional/ serious amateur handwriting analysts, by sending an e-mail to Gary Brown who moderates the group. This I did after visiting their website. I learned a lot from the discussions and participating in them. We now have few of the world's most talented and experienced analysts online in the group.
As a major step towards gaining a professional experience of analysis, I contributed the analysis of Mahatma Gandhi's handwriting to the webpage. In the four years that I have known this wonderful art, I have, analysed about 500 and odd samples, to various degrees of depth.