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The Danger of the Ouija Board

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« on: March 29, 2011, 09:43:39 am »

The Danger of the Ouija Board

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« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2012, 03:59:12 pm »

Ouija board helps psychologists probe the subconscious

Beloved of spiritualists and bored teenagers on a dare, the Ouija board has long been a source of entertainment, mystery and sometimes downright spookiness. Now it could shine a light on the secrets of the unconscious mind.

The Ouija, also known as a talking board, is a wooden plaque marked with the words, "yes", "no" and the letters of the alphabet. Typically a group of users place their hands on a movable pointer , or "planchette", and ask questions out loud. Sometimes the planchette signals an answer, even when no one admits to moving it deliberately.

Believers think the answer comes through from the spirit world. In fact, all the evidence points to the real cause being the ideomotor effect, small muscle movements we generate unconsciously.

That's why the Ouija board has attracted the attention of psychologists at the University of British Columbia in Canada. Growing evidence suggests the unconscious plays a role in cognitive functions we usually consider the preserve of the conscious mind.

Take driving your car along a familiar route while planning your day. On arrival, you realise you were not in conscious control of the car, it was your "inner zombie", said Hélène Gauchou at the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness conference in Brighton, UK, this week. "How can we communicate with that unconscious intelligence?"

Gauchou's approach is to turn to the Ouija board. To keep things simple her team has just one person with their finger on the planchette at a time. But the ideomotor effect is maximised if you believe you are not responsible for any movements - that's why Ouija board sessions are most successful when used by a group. So the subject is told they will be using the board with a partner. The subject is blindfolded and what they don't know is that their so-called partner removes their hands from the planchette when the experiment begins.

The technique worked, at least with 21 out of 27 volunteers tested, reports Gauchou. "The planchette does not move randomly around the board; it moves to yes or no. It seems to move almost magically. None of them felt responsible for the movement." In fact some subjects suspected that their partner was really an actor - but they thought the actor was deliberately moving the planchette, never suspecting they themselves were the only ones touching it.

Goucher's team has not yet used the technique to get new information about the unconscious, but they have established that it seems to work, in principle. They asked subjects to answer 'yes' or 'no' to general knowledge questions using the Ouija board, and also asked them to answer the same questions using the more orthodox method of typing on a computer (unblindfolded). Participants were also asked whether they knew the answer or were just guessing.

When using the computer, if the subjects said they didn't know the answer to a question, they got it right about half the time, as would be expected by chance. But when using the Ouija, they got those questions right 65 per cent of the time - suggesting they had a subconscious inkling of the right answer and the Ouija allowed that hunch to be expressed (Consciousness and Cognition, DOI: 10.1016/j.concog.2012.01.016).

The team now plan to refine the technique, as a normal Ouija board can take too long to deliver an answer - up to two minutes. "We're trying to develop a reducted friction device," says Gauchou. She's even developing a "Ouija app".

http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/shortsharpscience/2012/07/-is-there-anybody-there.html
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« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2012, 05:31:49 pm »

I've had a practicing WICCAN, not Christian, tell me to stay far away from Ouija boards. At the time, I thought it was some sort of harmless game. That there says a lot about where the psychologists are coming from. They're promoting communion with demons.
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« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2012, 07:08:13 pm »


When using the computer, if the subjects said they didn't know the answer to a question, they got it right about half the time, as would be expected by chance. But when using the Ouija, they got those questions right 65 per cent of the time - suggesting they had a subconscious inkling of the right answer and the Ouija allowed that hunch to be expressed (Consciousness and Cognition, DOI: 10.1016/j.concog.2012.01.016).

http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/shortsharpscience/2012/07/-is-there-anybody-there.html

That's it? ONLY 65%?

Sorry, but GOD'S prophecies come to pass *100%* of the time! Smiley
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« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2013, 12:36:14 pm »

The Strange and Mysterious History of the Ouija Board
Tool of the devil, harmless family game—or fascinating glimpse into the non-conscious mind?


In February, 1891, the first few advertisements started appearing in papers: “Ouija, the Wonderful Talking Board,” boomed a Pittsburgh toy and novelty shop, describing a magical device that answered questions “about the past, present and future with marvelous accuracy” and promised “never-failing amusement and recreation for all the classes,” a link “between the known and unknown, the material and immaterial.” Another advertisement in a New York newspaper declared it “interesting and mysterious” and testified, “as sProven at Patent Office before it was allowed. Price, $1.50.”

This mysterious talking board was basically what’s sold in board game aisles today: A flat board with the letters of the alphabet arrayed in two semi-circles above the numbers 0 through 9; the words “yes” and “no” in the uppermost corners, “goodbye” at the bottom; accompanied by a “planchette,” a teardrop-shaped device, usually with a small window in the body, used to maneuver about the board. The idea was that two or more people would sit around the board, place their finger tips on the planchette, pose a question, and watch, dumbfounded, as the planchette moved from letter to letter, spelling out the answers seemingly of its own accord. The biggest difference is in the materials; the board is now usually cardboard, rather than wood, and the planchette is plastic.

Though truth in advertising is hard to come by, especially in products from the 19th century, the Ouija board was “interesting and mysterious”; it actually had been “proven” to work at the Patent Office before its patent was allowed to proceed; and today, even psychologists believe that it may offer a link between the known and the unknown.

The real history of the Ouija board is just about as mysterious as how the “game” works. Ouija historian Robert Murch has been researching the story of the board since 1992; when he started his research, he says, no one really knew anything about its origins, which struck him as odd: “For such an iconic thing that strikes both fear and wonder in American culture, how can no one know where it came from?”

The Ouija board, in fact, came straight out of the American 19th century obsession with spiritualism, the belief that the dead are able to communicate with the living. Spiritualism, which had been around for years in Europe, hit America hard in 1848 with the sudden prominence of the Fox sisters of upstate New York; the Foxes claimed to receive messages from spirits who rapped on the walls in answer to questions, recreating this feat of channeling in parlors across the state. Aided by the stories about the celebrity sisters and other spiritualists in the new national press, spiritualism reached millions of adherents at its peak in the second half of the 19th century. Spiritualism worked for Americans: it was compatible with Christian dogma, meaning one could hold a séance on Saturday night and have no qualms about going to church the next day. It was an acceptable, even wholesome activity to contact spirits at séances, through automatic writing, or table turning parties, in which participants would place their hands on a small table and watch it begin shake and rattle, while they all declared that they weren’t moving it. The movement also offered solace in an era when the average lifespan was less than 50: Women died in childbirth; children died of disease; and men died in war. Even Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of the venerable president, conducted séances in the White House after their 11-year-old son died of a fever in 1862; during the Civil War, spiritualism gained adherents in droves, people desperate to connect with loved ones who’d gone away to war and never come home.

“Communicating with the dead was common, it wasn’t seen as bizarre or weird,” explains Murch. “It’s hard to imagine that now, we look at that and think, ‘Why are you opening the gates of hell?’”

But opening the gates of hell wasn’t on anyone’s mind when they started the Kennard Novelty Company, the first producers of the Ouija board; in fact, they were mostly looking to open Americans’ wallets.

As spiritualism had grown in American culture, so too did frustration with how long it took to get any meaningful message out of the spirits, says Brandon Hodge, Spiritualism historian. Calling out the alphabet and waiting for a knock at the right letter, for example, was deeply boring. After all, rapid communication with breathing humans at far distances was a possibility—the telegraph had been around for decades—why shouldn’t spirits be as easy to reach? People were desperate for methods of communication that would be quicker—and while several entrepreneurs realized that, it was the Kennard Novelty Company that really nailed it.

In 1886, the fledgling Associated Press reported on a new phenomenon taking over the spiritualists’ camps in Ohio, the talking board; it was, for all intents and purposes, a Ouija board, with letters, numbers and a planchette-like device to point to them. The article went far and wide, but it was Charles Kennard of Baltimore, Maryland who acted on it. In 1890, he pulled together a group of four other investors—including Elijah Bond, a local attorney, and Col. Washington Bowie, a surveyor—to start the Kennard Novelty Company to exclusively make and market these new talking boards. None of the men were spiritualists, really, but they were all of them keen businessmen and they’d identified a niche.

But they didn’t have the Ouija board yet—the Kennard talking board lacked a name. Contrary to popular belief, “Ouija” is not a combination of the French for “yes,” oui, and the German ja. Murch says, based on his research, it was Bond’s sister-in-law, Helen Peters (who was, Bond said, a “strong medium”), who supplied the now instantly recognizable handle. Sitting around the table, they asked the board what they should call it; the name “Ouija” came through and, when they asked what that meant, the board replied, “Good luck.” Eerie and cryptic—but for the fact that Peters acknowledged that she was wearing a locket bearing the picture of a woman, the name “Ouija” above her head. That’s the story that emerged from the Ouija founders’ letters; it’s very possible that the woman in the locket was famous author and popular women’s rights activist Ouida, whom Peters admired, and that “Ouija” was just a misreading of that.

According to Murch’s interviews with the descendants of the Ouija founders and the original Ouija patent file itself, which he’s seen, the story of the board’s patent request was true: Knowing that if they couldn’t prove that the board worked, they wouldn’t get their patent, Bond brought the indispensible Peters to the patent office in Washington with him when he filed his application. There, the chief patent officer demanded a demonstration—if the board could accurately spell out his name, which was supposed to be unknown to Bond and Peters, he’d allow the patent application to proceed. They all sat down, communed with the spirits, and the planchette faithfully spelled out the patent officer’s name. Whether or not it was mystical spirits or the fact that Bond, as a patent attorney, may have just known the man’s name, well, that’s unclear, Murch says. But on February 10, 1891, a white-faced and visibly shaken patent officer awarded Bond a patent for his new “toy or game.”

The first patent offers no explanation as to how the device works, just asserts that it does. That ambiguity and mystery was part of a more or less conscious marketing effort. “These were very shrewd businessmen,” notes Murch; the less the Kennard company said about how the board worked, the more mysterious it seemed—and the more people wanted to buy it. “Ultimately, it was a money-maker. They didn’t care why people thought it worked.”

And it was a money-maker. By 1892, the Kennard Novelty Company went from one factory in Baltimore to two in Baltimore, two in New York, two in Chicago and one in London. And by 1893, Kennard and Bond were out, owing to some internal pressures and the old adage about money changing everything. By this time, William Fuld, who’d gotten in on the ground floor of the fledgling company as an employee and stockholder, was running the company. (Notably, Fuld is not and never claimed to be the inventor of the board, though even his obituary in The New York Times declared him to be; also notably, Fuld died in 1927 after a freak fall from the roof of his new factory—a factory he said the Ouija board told him to build.) In 1898, with the blessing of Col. Bowie, the majority shareholder and one of only two remaining original investors, he licensed the exclusive rights to make the board. What followed were boom years for Fuld and frustration for some of the men who’d been in on the Ouija board from the beginning—public squabbling over who’d really invented it played out in the pages of the Baltimore Sun, while their rival boards launched and failed. In 1919, Bowie sold the remaining business interest in Ouija to Fuld, his protégé, for $1.

The board’s instant and now, more than 120 years later, prolonged success showed that it had tapped into a weird place in American culture. It was marketed as both mystical oracle and as family entertainment, fun with an element of other-worldly excitement. This meant that it wasn’t only spiritualists who bought the board; in fact, the people who disliked the Ouija board the most tended to be spirit mediums, as they’d just found their job as spiritual middleman cut out. The Ouija board appealed to people from across a wide spectrum of ages, professions, and education—mostly, Murch claims, because the Ouija board offered a fun way for people to believe in something. “People want to believe. The need to believe that something else is out there is powerful,” he says. “This thing is one of those things that allows them to express that belief.”

It’s quite logical then the board would find its greatest popularity in uncertain times, when people hold fast to belief and look for answers from just about anywhere, especially cheap, DIY oracles. The 1910s and ’20s, with the devastations of World War I and the manic years of the Jazz Age and prohibition, witnessed a surge in Ouija popularity. It was so normal that in May 1920, Norman Rockwell, illustrator of blissful 20th century domesticity, depicted a man and a woman, Ouija board on their knees, communing with the beyond on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post. During the Great Depression, the Fuld Company opened new factories to meet demand for the boards; over five months in 1944, a single New York department store sold 50,000 of them. In 1967, the year after Parker Brothers bought the game from the Fuld Company, 2 million boards were sold, outselling Monopoly; that same year saw more American troops in Vietnam, the counter-culture Summer of Love in San Francisco, and race riots in Newark, Detroit, Minneapolis and Milwaukee.

Strange Ouija tales also made frequent, titillating appearances in American newspapers. In 1920, national wire services reported that would-be crime solvers were turning to their Ouija boards for clues in the mysterious murder of a New York City g@mblerr, Joseph Burton Elwell, much to the frustration of the police. In 1921, The New York Times reported that a Chicago woman being sent to a psychiatric hospital tried to explain to doctors that she wasn’t suffering from mania, but that Ouija spirits had told her to leave her mother’s dead body in the living room for 15 days before burying her in the backyard. In 1930, newspaper readers thrilled to accounts of two women in Buffalo, New York, who’d murdered another woman, supposedly on the encouragement of Ouija board messages. In 1941, a 23-year-old gas station attendant from New Jersey told The New York Times that he joined the Army because the Ouija board told him to. In 1958, a Connecticut court decided not to honor the “Ouija board will” of Mrs. Helen Dow Peck, who left only $1,000 to two former servants and an insane $152,000 to Mr. John Gale Forbes—a lucky, but bodiless spirit who’d contacted her via the Ouija board.

Ouija boards even offered literary inspiration: In 1916, Mrs. Pearl Curran made headlines when she began writing poems and stories that she claimed were dictated, via Ouija board, by the spirit of a 17th century Englishwoman called Patience Worth. The following year, Curran’s friend, Emily Grant Hutchings, claimed that her book, Jap Herron, was communicated via Ouija board by the late Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain. Curran earned significant success, Hutchings less, but neither of them achieved the heights that Pulitzer Prize-winning poet James Merrill did: In 1982, his epic Ouija-inspired and dictated poem, The Changing Light at Sandover, won the National Book Critics Circle Award. (Merrill, for his part, publicly implied that the Ouija board acted more as a magnifier for his own poetic thoughts, rather than as hotline to the spirits. In 1979, after he wrote Mirabelle: Books of Number, another Ouija creation, he told The New York Review of Books, “If the spirits aren’t external, how astonishing the mediums become!”)
Ouija existed on the periphery of American culture, perennially popular, mysterious, interesting and usually, barring the few cases of supposed Ouija-inspired murders, non-threatening. That is, until 1973.

In that year, The Exorcist scared the pants off people in theaters, with all that pea soup and head-spinning and supposedly based on a true story business; and the implication that 12-year-old Regan was possessed by a demon after playing with a Ouija board by herself changed how people saw the board. “It’s kind of like Psycho—no one was afraid of showers until that scene… It’s a clear line,” says Murch, explaining that before The Exorcist, film and TV depictions of the Ouija board were usually jokey, hokey, and silly—“I Love Lucy,” for example, featured a 1951 episode in which Lucy and Ethel host a séance using the Ouija board. “But for at least 10 years afterwards, it’s no joke… [The Exorcist] actually changed the fabric of pop culture.”

Almost overnight, Ouija became a tool of the devil and, for that reason, a tool of horror writers and moviemakers—it began popping up in scary movies, usually opening the door to evil spirits hell-bent on ripping apart co-eds. Outside of the theatre, the following years saw the Ouija board denounced by religious groups as Satan’s preferred method of communication; in 2001 in Alamogordo, New Mexico, it was being burned on bonfires along with copies of Harry Potter and Disney’s Snow White. Christian religious groups still remain wary of the board, citing scripture denouncing communication with spirits through mediums—Catholic.com calls the Ouija board “far from harmless” and as recently as 2011, 700 Club host Pat Robertson declared that demons can reach us through the board. Even within the paranormal community, Ouija boards enjoyed a dodgy reputation—Murch says that when he first began speaking at paranormal conventions, he was told to leave his antique boards at home because they scared people too much. Parker Brothers and later, Hasbro, after they acquired Parker Brothers in 1991, still sold hundreds of thousands of them, but the reasons why people were buying them had changed significantly: Ouija boards were spooky rather than spiritual, with a distinct frisson of danger.

In recent years, Ouija is popular yet again, driven in part by economic uncertainty and the board’s usefulness as a plot device. The hugely popular Paranormal Activity 1 and 2 both featured a Ouija board; it’s popped up in episodes of “Breaking Bad,” “Castle,” “Rizzoli & Isles” and multiple paranormal reality TV programs; Hot Topic, mall favorite of Gothy teens, sells a set of Ouija board bra and underwear; and for those wishing to commune with the beyond while on the go, there’s an app (or 20) for that. This year, Hasbro released a more “mystical” version of the game, replacing its old glow-in-the-dark version; for purists, Hasbro also licensed the rights to make a “classic” version to another company. In 2012, rumors that Universal was in talks to make a film based on the game abounded, although Hasbro refused to comment on that or anything else for this story.
But the real question, the one everyone wants to know, is how do Ouija boards work?

Ouija boards are not, scientists say, powered by spirits or even demons. Disappointing but also potentially useful—because they’re powered by us, even when we protest that we’re not doing it, we swear. Ouija boards work on a principle known to those studying the mind for more than 160 years: the ideometer effect. In 1852, physician and physiologist William Benjamin Carpenter published a report for the Royal Institution of Great Britain, examining these automatic muscular movements that take place without the conscious will or volition of the individual (think crying in reaction to a sad film, for example). Almost immediately, other researchers saw applications of the ideometer effect in the popular spiritualist pastimes. In 1853, chemist and physicist Michael Faraday, intrigued by table-turning, conducted a series of experiments that proved to him (though not to most spiritualists) that the table’s motion was due to the ideomotor actions of the participants.

The effect is very convincing. As Dr. Chris French, professor of psychology and anomalistic psychology at Goldsmiths, University of London, explains, “It can generate a very strong impression that the movement is being caused by some outside agency, but it’s not.” Other devices, such as dowsing rods, or more recently, the fake bomb detection kits that deceived scores of international governments and armed services, work on the same principle of non-conscious movement. “The thing about all these mechanisms we’re talking about, dowsing rods, Oujia boards, pendulums, these small tables, they’re all devices whereby a quite a small muscular movement can cause quite a large effect,” he says. Planchettes, in particular, are well-suited for their task—many used to be constructed of a lightweight wooden board and fitted with small casters to help them move more smoothly and freely; now, they’re usually plastic and have felt feet, which also help it slide over the board easily.

“And with Ouija boards you’ve got the whole social context. It’s usually a group of people, and everyone has a slight influence,” French notes. With Ouija, not only does the individual give up some conscious control to participate—so it can’t be me, people think—but also, in a group, no one person can take credit for the planchette’s movements, making it seem like the answers must be coming from an otherworldly source. Moreover, in most situations, there is an expectation or suggestion that the board is somehow mystical or magical. “Once the idea has been implanted there, there’s almost a readiness to happen.”

But if Ouija boards can’t give us answers from beyond the Veil, what can they tell us? Quite a lot, actually.

Researchers at the University of British Columbia’s Visual Cognition Lab think the board may be a good way to examine how the mind processes information on various levels. The idea that the mind has multiple levels of information processing is by no means a new one, although exactly what to call those levels remains up for debate: Conscious, unconscious, subconscious, pre-conscious, zombie mind are all terms that have been or are currently used, and all have their supporters and detractors. For the purposes of this discussion, we’ll refer to “conscious” as those thoughts you’re basically aware that you’re having (“I’m reading this fascinating article.”) and “non-conscious” as the automatic pilot-type thoughts (blink, blink).

Two years ago, Dr. Ron Rensink, professor of psychology and computer science, psychology postdoctoral researcher Hélène Gauchou, and Dr. Sidney Fels, professor of electrical and computer engineering, began looking at exactly what happens when people sit down to use a Ouija board. Fels says that they got the idea after he hosted a Halloween party with a fortune-telling theme and found himself explaining to several foreign students, who had never really seen it before, how the Ouija works.

“They kept asking where to put the batteries,” Fels laughed. After offering up a more Halloween-friendly, mystical explanation—leaving out the ideomotor effect—he left the students to play with the board on their own. When he came back, hours later, they were still at it, although by now much more freaked out. A few days post-hangover later, Fels said, he, Rensink, and a few others began talking about what is actually going on with the Ouija. The team thought the board could offer a really unique way to examine non-conscious knowledge, to determine whether ideomotor action could also express what the non-conscious knows.

“It was one of things that we thought it probably won’t work, but if it did work, it’d be really freaking cool,” said Rensink.

Their initial experiments involved a Ouija-playing robot: Participants were told that they were playing with a person in another room via teleconferencing; the robot, they were told, mimicked the movements of the other person. In actuality, the robot’s movements simply amplified the participants’ motions and the person in the other room was just a ruse, a way to get the participant to think they weren’t in control. Participants were asked a series of yes or no, fact-based questions (“Is Buenos Aires the capital of Brazil? Were the 2000 Olympic Games held in Sydney?”) and expected to use the Ouija board to answer.

What the team found surprised them: When participants were asked, verbally, to guess the answers to the best of their ability, they were right only around 50 percent of the time, a typical result for guessing. But when they answered using the board, believing that the answers were coming from someplace else, they answered correctly upwards of 65 percent of the time. “It was so dramatic how much better they did on these questions than if they answered to the best of their ability that we were like, ‘This is just weird, how could they be that much better?’” recalled Fels. “It was so dramatic we couldn’t believe it.” The implication was, Fels explained, that one’s non-conscious was a lot smarter than anyone knew.

The robot, unfortunately, proved too delicate for further experiments, but the researchers were sufficiently intrigued to pursue further Ouija research. They divined another experiment: This time, rather than a robot, the participant actually played with a real human. At some point, the participant was blindfolded—and the other player, really a confederate, quietly took their hands off the planchette. This meant that the participant believed he or she wasn’t alone, enabling the kind of automatic pilot state the researchers were looking for, but still ensuring that the answers could only come from the participant.

It worked. Rensink says, “Some people were complaining about how the other person was moving the planchette around. That was a good sign that we really got this kind of condition that people were convinced that somebody else was there.” Their results replicated the findings of the experiment with the robot, that people knew more when they didn’t think they were controlling the answers (50 percent accuracy for vocal responses to 65 percent for Ouija responses). They reported their findings in February 2012 issue of Consciousness and Cognition.

“You do much better with the Ouija on questions that you really don’t think you know, but actually something inside you does know and the Ouija can help you answer above chance,” says Fels.

UBC’s experiments show that the Ouija could be a very useful tool in rigorously investigating non-conscious thought processes. “Now that we have some hypotheses in terms of what’s going on here, accessing knowledge and cognitive abilities that you don’t have conscious awareness of, [the Ouija board] would be an instrument to actually get at that,” Fels explains. “Now we can start using it to ask other types of questions.”

Those types of questions include how much and what the non-conscious mind knows, how fast it can learn, how it remembers, even how it amuses itself, if it does. This opens up even more avenues of exploration—for example, if there are two or more systems of information processes, which system is more impacted by neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s? If it impacted the non-conscious earlier, Rensink hypothesizes, indications of the illness could show up in Ouija manipulation, possibly even before being detected in conscious thought.

For the moment, the researchers are working on locking down their findings in a second study and firming up protocol around using the Ouija as a tool. However, they’re running up against a problem—funding. “The classic funding agencies don’t want to be associated with this, it seems a bit too out there,” said Rensink. All the work they’ve done to date has been volunteer, with Rensink himself paying for some of the experiment’s costs. To get around this issue, they’re looking to crowd-funding to make up the gap.
Even if they don’t succeed, the UBC team has managed to make good on one of the claims of the early Ouija advertisements: The board does offer a link between the known and the unknown. Just not the unknown that everyone wanted to believe it was.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history-archaeology/The-Strange-and-Mysterious-History-of-the-Ouija-Board-229532101.html?c=y&page=1#ouija-board-planchette-gallery.png
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« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2013, 04:39:14 pm »

In the 1800's? ALOT really happened in that century - the "discovery" of evolution, xmas/Ishtar infiltrating Christian church buildings, Wescott/Hort and the corrupt Alexandrian manuscripts, PL Blavatsky's Theosophy Society, and now this?

Yeah, the 19th century really planted the seeds for centuries future - Hitler and N@zi Germany leaders worshipped Blavatsky's teachings, the modern-day church system uses NIVs and other corrupt bibles, evolution is taught in the public school systems, and now games like this are in the mainstream.
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« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2013, 04:54:16 pm »

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The Ouija board, in fact, came straight out of the American 19th century obsession with spiritualism, the belief that the dead are able to communicate with the living. Spiritualism, which had been around for years in Europe, hit America hard in 1848 with the sudden prominence of the Fox sisters of upstate New York; the Foxes claimed to receive messages from spirits who rapped on the walls in answer to questions, recreating this feat of channeling in parlors across the state. Aided by the stories about the celebrity sisters and other spiritualists in the new national press, spiritualism reached millions of adherents at its peak in the second half of the 19th century. Spiritualism worked for Americans: it was compatible with Christian dogma, meaning one could hold a séance on Saturday night and have no qualms about going to church the next day. It was an acceptable, even wholesome activity to contact spirits at séances, through automatic writing, or table turning parties, in which participants would place their hands on a small table and watch it begin shake and rattle, while they all declared that they weren’t moving it. The movement also offered solace in an era when the average lifespan was less than 50: Women died in childbirth; children died of disease; and men died in war. Even Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of the venerable president, conducted séances in the White House after their 11-year-old son died of a fever in 1862; during the Civil War, spiritualism gained adherents in droves, people desperate to connect with loved ones who’d gone away to war and never come home.

Which makes me wonder how many modern-day pastors are occultists - to be frank, during my lifetime of hearing these pastors preach, sometimes it feels like they're drunken. No, not from drinking too much alcohol, but it's as if they're just not thinking and talking straight on the pulpits. Had that feeling with my last pastor, and to be frank my current pastor that got forced out 2 months ago had this similar behavior on Sundays. And they're not the only ones - a few churches I've visited over the last few years had this feel as well.

But then, they are preaching out of non-KJBs.
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« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2014, 07:08:17 pm »

Three American friends hospitalised after becoming 'possessed' following Ouija board game in Mexican village

    Alexandra Huerta, 22, reportedly playing with Ouija board in Mexican village
    Joined by her brother Sergio, 23, and 18-year-old cousin Fernando Cuevas
    But minutes into game, trio apparently started acting in a 'trance-like state'
    Alexandra began 'growling', while her relatives were suffering hallucinations
    The players were taken to hospital, where they were treated with painkillers


Three American friends have been taken to hospital after reportedly becoming 'possessed' by evil spirits while playing with a Ouija board.

Alexandra Huerta, 22, was playing the game with her brother Sergio, 23, and 18-year-old cousin Fernando Cuevas at a house in the village of San Juan Tlacotenco in south-west Mexico.

But minutes into it, she apparently started 'growling' and thrashing around in a 'trance-like' state.

Meanwhile, Sergio and Fernando also reportedly started showing signs of 'possession', including feelings of blindness, deafness and hallucinations.

Paramedics were called to the house and took the trio to hospital, according to Alexandra's parents.

They restrained Alexandra to prevent her from hurting herself, before treating the three with painkillers, anti-stress medication and eye drops, which seemingly worked.

Victor Demesa, 46, the director of public safety in the nearby town of Tepoztlan, said: 'The medical rescue of these three young people was very complicated.

'They had involuntary movements and it was difficult to transfer them to the nearest hospital because they were so erratic.

'It appeared as if they were in a trance-like state, apparently after playing with the Ouija board.

'They spoke of feeling numbness, double vision, blindness, deafness, hallucinations, muscle spasm and difficulty swallowing.'

He added that whether the trio were really possessed, or had simply convinced themselves that they were, was not for doctors to comment on.

Alexandra's parents said they had called paramedics after a local Catholic priest refused to perform an exorcism on the three because they were not regular churchgoers.

The Ouija board - also known as a spirit board or talking board - is a flat board marked with the letters of the alphabet, the numbers 0-9, the words 'yes', 'no', 'hello' and 'goodbye' and various symbols and graphics.

It uses a small heart-shaped piece of wood or movable indicator to indicate the spirit's message by spelling it out on the board during a seance.

Participants place their fingers on the wood and it is supposedly moved around the board by the spirit to spell out words.

Mainstream religions and some occultists have associated use of a Ouija board with the concept of demonic possession, and have cautioned their followers not to use one.

VIDEO Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2665899/Possessed-girl.html#ixzz35Vii2B8y


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« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2014, 12:47:55 am »

An occult practitioner discusses this. Admits, “I’ve been possessed many times.” (Some foul language toward the end.)

Dangers of possession from using the Ouija Board


Quote
Published on Jul 1, 2013
Dangers of possession from using the Ouija Board.
Psychic development:
I felt compelled to warn people not to mess around with opening themselves up & inviting dark energies and demons into their home/ energy system (Chakra's) after watching a UTube video promoting the Ouija Board.

A little girl plays with one of these things and displays symptoms of demonic possession.

Bella clown ouija board possession



Rev 16:14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
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« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2014, 07:57:58 am »

Google: Online Searches for Ouija Boards Up 300 Percent

In a report recently released by the search engine giant Google, online searches for Ouija boards—occult boards used to communicate with the dead—have risen 300 percent in the past few months, raising concerns with Christians over those who may engage in the Bible’s forbidden practice of necromancy.

“Certain retro toys are making a comeback this season,” Google wrote in its Black Friday article on the most popular searches for gifts online. “Thanks to the new movie ‘Ouija,’ searches for ‘Ouija boards’ are up 300% since October.”

The LA Times reported just before the opening of the film this fall that Hasbro Studios President Stephen Davis, the head of the company that creates the “Ouija Board Game,” had posted on his wall a “framed New Yorker cartoon in which a child with a Ouija board says, ‘It’s like texting, but for dead people.'” The “Ouija Board Game” is available in the toy section of retail stores such as Walmart, Target and Toys R Us.

Although the film based on the occultist board was spurned by critics, “Ouija” was a successful at the box office, raking in over $20 million on its opening weekend and showing in over 2,000 theaters nationwide. It grossed over $50 million total in the USA alone.

“A girl is mysteriously killed after recording herself playing with an ancient Ouija Board, which leads to a close group of friends to investigate this board,” a description of the horror film reads. The friends hold a seance to try to communicate with the deceased girl and find themselves getting in touch with other spirits, unraveling a murder mystery.

By the end of the film, the youth “find out that some things aren’t meant to be played with, especially the ‘other side.'”

But despite the film’s conclusion that “some things aren’t meant to be played with,” the movie has reportedly piqued the interest of many of its viewers as Google saw a significant spike in searches for Ouija boards online.

Some state that this raises concern over those who may now become entrenched in the occult by experimenting with necromancy, a practice forbidden in the Scriptures.

“The fact that people’s intention is to contact the spiritual realm outside the blessings and parameters that God has set out could lead to them to connect with the evil spiritual realm,” Darren Gallagher, a spokesman for Ellel Ministries, told Christian Today. “Therefore such things as Ouija boards are not just harmless fun, but could potentially be spiritually dangerous for those who take part in such things.”

He noted that in the book of Acts, the people “gathered together their occultic objects and burnt them because they knew that these practices were not compatible with their new life in Christ.”

Matt Slick of Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry (CARM) likewise stated that Ouija boards should not be considered innocent or harmless.

“Ultimately, it’s never a simple and harmless thing to use any method to contact the dead and/or the spirit realm,” he wrote in an article entitled “Can a Christian Use an Ouija Board?” “As someone who has experience in the occult, though I never used a Ouija board, I can tell you that participation in such practices invariably leads to deception and further involvement. It was only by the grace of God that I escaped from getting more heavily involved.”

http://christiannews.net/2014/12/07/google-online-searches-for-ouija-boards-up-300-percent/
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« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2014, 08:02:43 am »

Can a Christian use an Ouija board?

by Matt Slick

Ouija BoardThe Ouija board has been around since the 1800s and was used by people in various forms of occult practices, particularly in attempts to contact the dead and or the spirit realm. The board was popularized as a game by Parker Brothers which was later sold to Hasbro in 1991.1  The Ouija Board, among other methods, is used in spiritism and is a doorway into the occult.  In spiritism, mediums are often used to facilitate communication with those who have "passed over" into the spiritual realm and often times various objects are used to facilitate that communication, the Ouija board being one of them.

 The board consists of the words "yes" and "no", all the letters of the alphabet, the numbers zero through nine, and the word "goodbye"; some versions include the word "hello".  In addition, there is a slider with a "lens" embedded within it. Participants place their fingertips on the slider and then it's supposed to move in response to various questions posed by the participants.  There are many shapes and sizes with different type sets, but the overall pattern is the same.

"The word "Ouija" is a blend of the French and German words for "yes." Adolphus Theodore Wagner first patented Ouija boards, sometimes referred to as "talking boards," in London, England on January 23, 1854."2

Does the Ouija board really work?

There's a phenomenon called the ideomotor effect that occurrs when a person moves something without being aware of it. Studies have been done on the Ouija board where participants have been tested.  It appears that people move the slider without knowingly doing it.  the University of British Columbia did a study on the Ouija board.

"At the UBC Visual Cognition Lab, engineering, computer science and psychology have joined forces to see if the movements of a Ouija Board can tell us something about our non-conscious mind...Dr. Sid Fels of ECE with Dr. Ron Rensink (Computer Science and Psychology) and PostDoc Hélén Gauchou (Psychology) have conducted a number of experiments using the Ouija Board that demonstrate how clever implicit cognition (the non-conscious mind) really is. In one experiment people were asked a number of yes or no, fact based questions, with and without the Ouija Board. When asked to use the Ouija Board to answer questions participants were told they were moving the planchette or pointer with a person sitting in another room. In fact, Dr. Fels had designed a robot that mimiced and amplify the participant's movements. Answering the questions verbally people got about 50% of the questions right, but with a Ouija Board they got 65% of the questions right. These results were replicated in a second study. In this experiment participants sat down to the Ouija Board with a confederate and then were blindfolded. The confederate quickly removed their hands from the planchette. Once again, the responses in the Ouija Board condition, when particpants did not think they were in conscious control, were much better."3

Obviously, there is a naturalistic explanation for why the slider/pointer moves.  In the citation above, is due to unconscious movements of the participants.  But, if that's all it is would it be okay to play the game?  As Christians, we should avoid the Ouija board since it falls under the admonition to avoid anything that seeks to contact the dead.

    Lev. 19:26, "You shall not eat anything with the blood, nor practice divination or soothsaying."
    Deut. 18:10, "There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer,"
    2 Kings 17:17, "Then they made their sons and their daughters pass through the fire, and practiced divination and enchantments, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of the Lord, provoking Him."
    2 Kings 21:6, "And he made his son pass through the fire, practiced witchcraft and used divination, and dealt with mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the sight of the Lord provoking Him to anger."
    2 Chron. 33:6, "And he made his sons pass through the fire in the valley of Ben-hinnom; and he practiced witchcraft, used divination, practiced sorcery, and dealt with mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the sight of the Lord, provoking Him to anger."
    Gal. 5:17-21, "For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law. 19 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you just as I have forewarned you that those who practice such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."
    Rev. 9:21, "and they did not repent of their murders nor of their sorceries nor of their immorality nor of their thefts."

Ultimately, it's never a simple and harmless thing to use any method to contact the dead and/or the spirit realm, it is a doorway into the occult. As someone who has experience in the occult, though I never used a Ouija board, I can tell you that participation in such practices invariably leads to deception and further involvement. It was only by the grace of God that I escaped from getting more heavily involved.

http://carm.org/can-a-christian-use-the-ouija-board
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« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2015, 08:35:14 am »

Wicked 'Supernatural' Gift Among 2014's Christmas Sell-Out Items

When my friend told me that ouija boards were going to be this Christmas' sell-out item my initial reaction was that this was another "urban myth" best treated with a healthy dose of skepticism. Who, in an age of the Internet, online gaming, Facebook and 3-D televisions would want to move a pointer around on a board in the hope of getting messages from the spirit world? The astonishing answer is, quite a lot of people!

The story turns out to be true. I cannot verify that.. Promoted by an apparently truly dreadful film (sponsored by Hasbro, the toy firm that holds the rights to ouija boards), sales of the £20+ boards have gone through the roof. And it's not just me who is mystified. As Simon Osborne wrote in the Independent, "What better time to talk to dead people for fun than the festival to celebrate the birth of Jesus?"

Three observations. First, this is yet another phenomenon reminding us that, for all the bold claims of the new atheism that the world is moving into an age of rational thought in which every form of the supernatural is rejected, the reality "on the ground" is very different. The hunger for the supernatural, the paranormal and the mystical remains intense and almost universal. Indeed, it seems as if the more a "universe without God" is talked up, the more people flock to the supernatural. If atheism is true, then it's very odd that no one seems to follow it.

Second, a ouija board is not, in any way, a game. Let's be honest. To use it is to seek to contact spirits, whether of the dead or of any other sort. Here it is worth stating that the Bible is clear that there is a spiritual world beyond our physical senses; it contains both good and evil forces and we are not to seek to communicate with either for news of the future or for any other purpose. Good spirits are off limits because we are commanded to pray to the God whom they serve, and bad spirits are forbidden because they always seek to deceive and harm us.

Some relevant Bible verses include Leviticus 19:31 ("Do not turn to spirits through mediums or necromancers. Do not seek after them to be defiled by them: I am the Lord your God.") and Deuteronomy 18:10-12 ("There must not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or who uses divination, or uses witchcraft, or an interpreter of omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts spells, or a spiritualist, or an occultist, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination to the Lord, and because of these abominations the Lord your God will drive them out from before you."). It's not just the Bible that is negative either. Every minister I have ever talked to on the subject has been able to tell me of people they know personally whose lives have been very negatively affected by using (I refuse to use playing with) a ouija board.

It is my view, and it is shared not just by other Christians but by many other people, that evil spiritual forces do exist. To use a ouija board or anything similar is rather like sneaking into a zoo and unlocking cages at random. You may get far more than you bargained for. Ouija boards are potentially dangerous things.

Thirdly, there are only two interpretations of what goes on when people use a ouija board. The first is that any movement of the pointer is purely a subconscious psychological effect of those involved and the whole exercise is worthless. (Interestingly enough, one of the first people to demonstrate that this kind of claimed 'supernatural' motion had a purely human origin was the 19th-century scientist and devout Christian, Michael Faraday.) In that case, the purchase of any ouija board is a complete and total waste of money.

The second interpretation is that use of a ouija board can result in contact being made with harmful forces or individuals "out there," in which case its possession or use is appallingly dangerous. In either case, they are to be avoided. The word ouija is often claimed to originate from a merger of the French and German words for "yes"; everybody would be far wiser simply to say "no."

What if you have one of these boards? I'd take a tip from Acts 19:19, which says, "Many who practiced magic brought their books together and burned them before everyone." If you have a ouija board, then I think only serious question you face is this: Where am I going to burn it?

http://www.charismanews.com/culture/46607-wicked-supernatural-gift-among-2014-s-christmas-sell-out-items
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« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2016, 09:03:03 pm »

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« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2016, 10:20:58 pm »

Wanna know why people have trouble with things flying around the house? Things teleporting from one spot to another? Strange knocking sounds at night? Light going on and off for no reason? Things appearing by their bedside terrorizing them? Or even on the bed? “Alien” abductions?

Because they invited it. They wanted it there. Like  playing with the ouija. People are inviting and expecting spiritual entities to show up. What they don't know is that, once there, the entities don't go away by human command. We don't really have the authority to boss them around.

I believe it mentions in the Bible the big AC ruling by intrigue. Interesting word. Isn't that what gets people to buy ouija boards to begin with? Intrigue?

The door can only be shut by a higher authority than the demons. And that's not us right now.
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« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2017, 08:06:34 pm »

Wisconsin Teacher Placed on Leave After Using Ouija Board in Kindergarten Class

A public school teacher in Wisconsin has been placed on leave after using an Ouija board in her kindergarten classroom.

The incident occurred at Zablocki Elementary in Milwaukee last week, although the teacher, who has not been identified, says that the board had been in the room since Halloween.

She had been contacted by a concerned parent who learned that her five-year-old son had been exposed to the activity. The boy told his mother that his teacher turned off the lights, took out the board, and began talking about scary stories.

“The kids have been asking for a scary story and I got the board and moved the paper clip to answer some of their questions. They asked about scary characters in movies,” the teacher responded to the parent via e-mail. “It was all done in fun.”

However, she said that she understood the parent’s concerns.

“I will take the board home and this won’t happen again,” she wrote.

The mother says that her son has been having nightmares since that day. She doesn’t believe kindergartners should be exposed to Ouija boards.

“He’s scared now to go to bed at night, to be in the dark, anything alone,” she told reporters.

The teacher has now been placed on leave while the school investigates.

“I’m happy that she’s being investigated. Maybe she’ll think twice about doing something in the future,” the mother told WISN-TV. She has now called for the teacher to be fired, and although she is being criticized for doing so, she says she believes she did what was right.

As previously reported, in December 2014, Google reported that searches for Ouija boards had risen 300 percent following the release of the film “Ouija.” Despite the film’s conclusion that “some things aren’t meant to be played with,” the movie reportedly piqued the interest of many of its viewers.

“The fact that people’s intention is to contact the spiritual realm outside the blessings and parameters that God has set out could lead to them to connect with the evil spiritual realm,” Darren Gallagher, a spokesman for Ellel Ministries, told Christian Today at that time. “Therefore such things as Ouija boards are not just harmless fun, but could potentially be spiritually dangerous for those who take part in such things.”

He noted that in the book of Acts, the people “gathered together their occultic objects and burned them because they knew that these practices were not compatible with their new life in Christ.”

http://christiannews.net/2017/03/02/wisconsin-teacher-placed-on-leave-after-using-ouija-board-in-kindergarten-class/
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