I will be doing something a little different in this blog, I will be talking about the Ouija board. Many people believe that these boards allow them to talk to the dead, and they do look very mysterious, mostly for the fact that they seem to work.
But are these boards really magical? Firstly, they can be made out of a bit of cardboard! It is not as though they have to be made by shamans from mystical, sacred material. No, home-made ones work fine. This definitely seems to reduce the magic and mystery surrounding the board.
So if spirits aren’t moving the board, who is? Humans are. Even though the people participating are absolutely 100% sure that they are not moving the marker/glass on the board, they are. It’s called Ideomotor movement, and it is a psychological phenomenon where our muscles move without us knowing, we make movements unconsciously.
A good way to test this is to use a Ouija board blindfolded. If the spirits moved the marker, this should not be a problem, but it is. A TV show called Brain Games did a test like this, and when the participants were blindfolded, they couldn’t get an answer to their questions, all they got was J, (blank), K, (blank), (blank). This shows that when you can’t see where your hand are, the ideomotor movement can’t work properly and you get random, useless answers.
To test this movement, hold your hands out in front of you and link your fingers together, hold your hands at eye level about a foot away from you. Next, lift both of your index fingers and hold them a few centimeters apart, focus on them both and wait for a few seconds. If you are doing it correctly, both of your index fingers should move towards each other without you consciously doing anything.
Another experiment you can do involves using a small glass cup as a marker, you can place a small piece of cardboard on top of the glass, when you use the Ouija board, if spirits were moving the glass, the cardboard should slide away from the direction of movement, but what happens is the cardboard moves towards the direction of movement – an indicator that you are the one moving it.
The reason that seemingly random dead spirits know every little detail about you is because those dead spirits are actually just you and your psychological ideomotor movement. As for predictions that have come true that the Ouija board has prophesied; they are just lucky guesses and random probability.
Image courtesy of Dave Winer at Flickr.com