- There's an ongoing debate about the powers
and realities of the Ouija board. Essentially, there are three basic positions:
- · It is inherently dangerous,
can open portals to evil entities and should never be used.
- · It is only dangerous if used
with evil intent, but can be a useful tool for spirit mediumship if used
properly and with good intent.
- · It is inherently harmless
and has no real powers of mediumship for good or evil; its effects, if
any, are only psychological in nature.
- Which is true? Talk to any group of people
and you'll find strong proponents for each argument. A few years ago, I
conducted a survey of readers on this subject. It results showed that 65
percent of those who responded felt the Ouija was dangerous, and 35% felt
it was harmless. There is also a lively discussion on the matter in our
- Inherently Evil
- As expected, most religious leaders are
strongly anti-Ouija. More interesting, however, is that many of the top
paranormal researchers believe the Ouija to be a dangerous instrument,
to be avoided at all cost.
- Brad Steiger, one of the most prolific
authors on matters supernatural, has consistently stated his opposition
to the use or even the ownership of a Ouija board. In his article "Mothers,
Don't Let Your Children Grow Up to Play with Ouija Boards," Steiger
recounts his investigation of a 17-year-old girl who began experimenting
with the Ouija with dire consequences. "She thought she had
the knowledge to contact spirit entities through the board," Steiger
writes, "but unfortunately she had neglected to assume a prayerful
attitude to guard against malignant influences."
- Dale Kaczmarek, founder of the Ghost
Research Society, says, "I would strongly advise against the use of
the Ouija, automatic writing or séances" in his article "Ouija:
Not a Game." "Most often the spirits whom are contacted through
the Ouija are those whom reside on 'the lower astral plane'."
- One of the most respected paranormal
investigators or the past fifty years, Hans Holzer, adds his voice in warning
against the Ouija. In the book The Ouija Board: A Doorway to the Occult,
author Edmond C. Gruss quotes Holzer as saying, "Those who wish to
use the Ouija board as a parlor game I advise to think twice. There is
always the possibility rare, I admit, but conceivable that
one of those playing the board is a genuine trance medium without realizing
it. In such a case, the board can become an easy entrance for a disincarnate
person who might next take over the personality of the medium and manifest
under conditions where no controls are possible."
- Some readers in the Forum have also had
bad experiences. "I'm wondering if anybody else out there knows how
dangerous Ouija boards truly are?" says toddybear007. "I had
my own experiences a long time ago when I was around 13 years old. To make
a long story short, I came face to face with pure evil."
- "I do believe without a doubt that
Ouija boards open doors," adds Deebliss. "The entity that we
brought out actually manifested itself to my best friend's mother."
- The article "Ouija, Using it Without
Harm" on the PaganPath website states: "The Ouija is only as
dangerous as you and/or your friends make it. The Ouija can be a useful
tool for mediumship (spirit contact) but can also be a tool to tap into
the subconscious minds of the users. If you begin your Ouija session with
the intention of just seeing what will happen, but without letting superstitious
fears scare you, you're well on your way to a fun, entertaining, and informative
- Even those who say the Ouija can be used
without harm often suggest performing a "cleansing" before any
experiments. According to Crystalinks' article on the board, "Some
people like to say a prayer over the board or do some other ritual.
In this case envision a protective white light of energy surround yourself,
the board, those you are working with, and even the room."
- Inherently Harmless
- Author and ghost hunter Loyd Auerbach
is one of few seasoned paranormal investigators who doesn't put much stock
in the Ouija's powers. In his book, Ghost Hunting: How To Investigate the
Paranormal, he writes: "There is nothing inherently evil or demonic
about Ouija boards." The answers come from "unconsciously driven
minor muscle movements and not spirits of dead people. Ouija boards have
never been shown to tap into spiritual sources. Any dangeris in taking
the 'communications' literally."
- Many people, like me, who have attempted
to use the board get little or no results. Nostro75 in the Forum is another.
"I brought one from the Internet and have tried to use it several
times, including on my own and with friends and family. The planchette
didn't move an inch, ever. So nothing to fear."
- The "Skeptic's Dictionary"
agrees with Auerbach's position and may have the most reasonable advice
about the Ouija. "The movement of the planchette is not due to paranormal
forces but to unnoticeable movements by those controlling the pointer,
known as the ideomotor effect," the website says in its article on
- "Observing the powerful effect of
messages on impressionable people can be impressive. Yet, as experiences
with facilitated communication have shown, decent people often harbor indecent
thoughts of which they are unaware. And the fact that a person takes a
'communication' seriously enough to have it significantly interfere with
the enjoyment of life might be a sufficient reason for avoiding the Ouija
board as being more than a 'harmless bit of entertainment,' but it is hardly
a sufficient reason for concluding that the messages issue from anything
but our own minds."
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