Jump to content
Join the Unexplained Mysteries community today! It's free and setting up an account only takes a moment.
- Sign In or Create Account -
oslove

The ouija board as a scientific instrument?

Recommended Posts

oslove

BigThink is a website dedicated to the exploration of ideas without any censorship of the kind like the socalled peer review practiced in established science journals (more like peer pressure if you ask me).

It is slow and cumbersome to use in order to put forth an idea in BigThink and have it come out in the web, that's my impression; and there is no link on feedbacks but there are links for contact us, help, and about.

Why don't they just set up a forum like the present one of Unexplained Mysteries and use the forum software of say vBulletin which to my experience is the best (but one has to pay for the use) and also the one used by the present forum, IP.Board.

Anyway I put forth this idea in BigThink yesterday, and I like to also introduce it here in this forum of unexplained mysteries:

http://www.bigthink.com/science-technology...vironment/12768

The ouija board is like a chess board but without the surface divided into equal squares, it can be bigger and the figures shown on the surface are letters of the alphabet and the numbers 1 to 9 and 0; there is what is called a planchette which is like an arrow head used for a pointer, which moves to letters and numbers to write a message.

That description above is just for people who don't have any idea of the ouija board.

The board is used by people -- who else but people, to make contacts with spirits, which spirits will answer questions from people using the board.

Usually at least two persons will use the board: they each touch the board lightly with one finger, and address their questions to the spirit believed to be present; the planchette will move to letters and numbers which compose an answer from the spirit.

Can we use then the ouija board as a scientific way and means to communicate with spirits, and why not?

No, I have not come across any really serious investigation of the ouija board, not from materials freely accessible in the web, except its dismissal by what I consider to be shallow probers who talk about how the ouija works by the socalled ideomotor effect.

That is a shallow probe with a shallow pretentious finding and the term coined, of ideomotor, i.e., the planchette moves due to the unconscious force exerted by participants with their fingers on the planchette.

And the probers believe self-complacently that they have solved the phenomenon of the ouija board, when if they be truly serious investigators they should realize they missed totally the real question about the ouija board, except the mechanical possible mechanical causality of its movement.

What is the real question or questions about the ouija board. aside from the movement of the planchette toward letters and numbers and the words, yes no?

I can see right away two questions, there can be more, but these two are what I would consider two genuinely of concern to students of philosophy and science.

1. What and who spirits are being if any contacted with the ouija board?

2. What if any is the authenticity of their messages and utility?

Now, how do we researchers of anomalous phenomena arrange a serious probe of the ouija board to answer the two questions?

Think about that.

Oslove

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
ValkyrieVoice
BigThink is a website dedicated to the exploration of ideas without any censorship of the kind like the socalled peer review practiced in established science journals (more like peer pressure if you ask me).

It is slow and cumbersome to use in order to put forth an idea in BigThink and have it come out in the web, that's my impression; and there is no link on feedbacks but there are links for contact us, help, and about.

Why don't they just set up a forum like the present one of Unexplained Mysteries and use the forum software of say vBulletin which to my experience is the best (but one has to pay for the use) and also the one used by the present forum, IP.Board.

Anyway I put forth this idea in BigThink yesterday, and I like to also introduce it here in this forum of unexplained mysteries:

No, I have not come across any really serious investigation of the ouija board, not from materials freely accessible in the web, except its dismissal by what I consider to be shallow probers who talk about how the ouija works by the socalled ideomotor effect.

That is a shallow probe with a shallow pretentious finding and the term coined, of ideomotor, i.e., the planchette moves due to the unconscious force exerted by participants with their fingers on the planchette.

And the probers believe self-complacently that they have solved the phenomenon of the ouija board, when if they be truly serious investigators they should realize they missed totally the real question about the ouija board, except the mechanical possible mechanical causality of its movement.

What is the real question or questions about the ouija board. aside from the movement of the planchette toward letters and numbers and the words, yes no?

I can see right away two questions, there can be more, but these two are what I would consider two genuinely of concern to students of philosophy and science.

1. What and who spirits are being if any contacted with the ouija board?

2. What if any is the authenticity of their messages and utility?

Now, how do we researchers of anomalous phenomena arrange a serious probe of the ouija board to answer the two questions?

Think about that.

Oslove

I apologize. It's really difficult for me to understand your post, other than your proposal to that think tank, which I think is an awesome proposal! I hope they contact you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oslove

I came across an article in the web which I thought would be really into personal experiments with the ouija.

But I am really most disappointed; for though the author gives the impression that he is a worker in paranormal investigations, at the end of a long write-up he fails to deliver the genuine payload, namely:

1. What and who spirits are conveying the messages?

2. What are the messages about?

He lamely announced that after thinking carefully he decided not to do any self very own personal experiments with the ouija board.

http://www.mitchhorowitz.com/ouija.html

To Ouija – Or Not to Ouija?

[...]

Ouija is intriguing, interesting, even oddly magnetic – a survey of users in the 2001 International Journal of Parapsychology found that one half “felt a compulsion to use it.” But, in a culture filled with possibilities, and in a modern life of limited time and energy, is Ouija really the place to search? Clearly, for a James Merrill, it was. But there exists a deeper intuition than what comes through a board, or any outer object – one that answers that kind of question for every clear-thinking person. For me, the answer was no.

It was time to pack up my antique Ouija board in its box and return to what I found most lasting on the journey: The work of Merrill, who passed through the uses of this instrument and, with it, created a body of art that perhaps justifies the tumultuous, serpentine history from which Ouija has come.

"But there exists a deeper intuition than what comes through a board, or any outer object – one that answers that kind of question for every clear-thinking person. For me, the answer was no."

What do I say to that?

I don't want to be unkind but I believe that writer deserves a BAH!

So that he might learn something useful I wrote this email to him:

Please do the ouija then write about your experience.‏

From: Arnaldo Blondel (gertes-@-hotmail.com)

Sent: Sun 9/28/08 3:19 AM

To: mitch.horowitz@us.penguingroup.com

But there exists a deeper intuition than what comes through a board, or any outer object – one that answers that kind of question for every clear-thinking person. For me, the answer was no.

It was time to pack up my antique Ouija board in its box and return to what I found most lasting on the journey: The work of Merrill, who passed through the uses of this instrument and, with it, created a body of art that perhaps justifies the tumultuous, serpentine history from which Ouija has come.

Are you afraid to do the ouija and report on what you think are the spirits involved and what kinds of messages they give?

In an objective manner.

I have invested my time reading your write-up and did not come to anything new.

Please write something from your very own experience.

I just hope that this tip can be useful to you -- if you are receptive.

And please don't blame Merrill for any socalled tumultuous history of the ouija.

The man should be credited most massively for having the guts to experiment with the ouija and honest about deriving favor from it.

gerry

What about myself, why don't I do experiments with the ouija board?

Because I am not a worker involved in paranormal experiments and even taking active parts in them.

I am a consumer of reports and lores on paranormal phenomena and socalled anomalous sciences, and I study them from a philosophical standpoint.

Smile here.

Oslove

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
AlexG

Without wading through all of the above, the short answer is

no.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
PhenomInvestigator

The one topic that generates more traffic than any other on sites like this one seems to be the Ouija Board. I think the inventor would find this most amusing were he alive today.

I am one of those investigators who has in fact studied the Ouija for many decades. I am also one who is generally a proponent of the ideomotor effect in many cases. I have in many places proposed a test that rules out ideomotor (which by the way is a well-documented physical effect). I simply tell people to stop touching the planchette or glass on the board and see what happens.

In many cases when I have conducted controlled trials the planchette continues moving on its own generally producing only partially useful information. I do not consider this proof of any form of discarnate intervention however. I believe instead that we are witnessing psychokinetic disturbances, probably mediated by a person in the vicinity of the board. In my work, I have found there is always a dominant personality, usually a female, although that could be a selection artifact from the study group populations. So the effect is multimodal as far as I can tell.

Often times it is ideomotor, pure and simple. Other times we must rule out classic ideomotor in favor of a slightly more exotic explanation. When carefully reviewing both anecdotal reports and experiemental case studies however I have yet to personally find support for a demonlogical or even spiritual interpretation of the Ouija Board phenomena.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oslove
The one topic that generates more traffic than any other on sites like this one seems to be the Ouija Board. I think the inventor would find this most amusing were he alive today.

I am one of those investigators who has in fact studied the Ouija for many decades. I am also one who is generally a proponent of the ideomotor effect in many cases. I have in many places proposed a test that rules out ideomotor (which by the way is a well-documented physical effect). I simply tell people to stop touching the planchette or glass on the board and see what happens.

In many cases when I have conducted controlled trials the planchette continues moving on its own generally producing only partially useful information. I do not consider this proof of any form of discarnate intervention however. I believe instead that we are witnessing psychokinetic disturbances, probably mediated by a person in the vicinity of the board. In my work, I have found there is always a dominant personality, usually a female, although that could be a selection artifact from the study group populations. So the effect is multimodal as far as I can tell.

Often times it is ideomotor, pure and simple. Other times we must rule out classic ideomotor in favor of a slightly more exotic explanation. When carefully reviewing both anecdotal reports and experiemental case studies however I have yet to personally find support for a demonlogical or even spiritual interpretation of the Ouija Board phenomena.

In many cases when I have conducted controlled trials the planchette continues moving on its own generally producing only partially useful information. I do not consider this proof of any form of discarnate intervention however. I believe instead that we are witnessing psychokinetic disturbances, probably mediated by a person in the vicinity of the board. In my work, I have found there is always a dominant personality, usually a female, although that could be a selection artifact from the study group populations. So the effect is multimodal as far as I can tell.

That is a most amazing fact you have discovered, that the planchette does move without any physical contact with any person.

And you attribute the movement to psychokinetic disturbances probably mediated by some dominant female personality in the vicinity.

Whatever, the fact is that without physical contact from any person, there is movement of the planchette.

And you mention that the movements convey only partially useful information.

Those are two facts:

(1) planchette moves without any physical contact from any person,

(2) planchette movements convey partially useful information.

As a paranormal investigator I like to ask you if you had taken any graphical records of such movements of the planchette, appearing without any physical contact from any person; and did you take down the partially useful information and also even the useless information.

Oslove

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oslove

It is most disappointing that Phenominvestigator has not come by so far to this thread to reply to my last post here -- preceding the present one.

He is one member who has according to himself done investigations on Ouija.

Anyway, in case people here are interested to know what I have found out so far from readings in the web, these are my knowledge from the web on Ouija:

[ Not in any order of importance, though. ]

1. There are more people in the web warning about dire things to happen to people who do the Ouija, than people who are at most indifferent about any harm and at least observe that it is a good entertainment.

2. What dire things have happened to people? Only so far as I have read, a good scare, and the worst is loss of peace of mind as when someone asks something like about his own death, and the answer comes back that the asker will die an early death.

3. Some so-claimed investigators inform us that even without touching or any kind of physical contacts with the planchette, it does move by itself.

4. Messages from entities communicating from and by way of the Ouija to living persons doing the Ouija are of all kinds; but since most questions are not of any serious import, like asking what is the square root of any number given by the participants in Ouija, they tend to be also of no serious import.

5. Messages given by so-called demons, spirits, or whatever can be erroneous in the light of what we know to be facts. but they can be also factual information.

6. They are people who engage in Ouija and claim to receive spiritually important messages from the entities behind Ouija; but when you examine these messages, they are not of any kind not already known to people who are into spirituality, for example, we must love fellowmen, everything is connected in the universe, etc.

I am asking people here to refer me to police reports or just blotters on complaints or troubles in any neighborhood or with any people owing to the practice of Ouija.

Police records can be a very substantial source of serious materials for the study of Ouija.

No, I am not in any way or by any means giving anyone reading my posts on Ouija to engage also in Ouija or even to just witness Ouija sessions.

For myself I just read about accounts of Ouija, but I don't engage in any way and by any means in Ouija, because to be honest I am hesitant for I do still take seriously the warnings of a lot of people, that I could lose my peace of mind due to messages from my own subconscious or unconscious whatever realms of my mind.

My subconscious or unconscious mind might tell me things about myself that I would rather not face up to, because they can be devastating to my sense of self-worth or self-respect or élan for life.

In other words, if I can read about things and not to have to do them myself owing to a lot of inconvenience to be absorbed in the process, I would rather read about them and think about them and draw my own conclusions about them, than do them myself.

Oslove

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.