Not surprisingly, Ouija boards cannot be found in the bible because they did not exist when the pages of scripture were written. Ouija boards came into wide use with the spiritualism movement that began in the 1840's and lasted until the 1920's. Spiritualism is a religious movement which featured a belief that spirits of the dead could be contacted by mediums.
The Bible strongly prohibits mediums. "'Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the Lord your God. Lev. 19:31
When men tell you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? Isa. 8:19
According to Castle of Spirits, the Fox sisters, who claimed to actively communicate with the dead, developed a series of knocks for each letter of the alphabet. This led to the invention of parlor games to help the living see words spelled out from the dead. Eventually Elijah Bond and Charles Kennard made the Ouija board, patented it, and sold it on the market. It has done very well in sales.
Can people really contact the spirit world with an Ouija board? There are many stories that claim just that. According to Wikipedia, In 1944, occultist Manly P. Hall, the founder of the Philosophical Research Society and an early authority on the occult in the 20th century, stated in Horizon magazine that, "during the last 20-25 years I have had considerable personal experience with persons who have complicated their lives through dabbling with the Ouija board. Out of every hundred such cases, at least 95 are worse off for the experience." He went on to say that, "I know of broken homes, estranged families, and even suicides that can be traced directly to this source.
An interesting aspect of the Ouija board is it doesn't work if the users are blindfolded. This suggests that the people who use the Ouija board are consciously or sub consciously moving the planchette.
I dabbled with the Ouija board a few times when I was a teenager but I never took it seriously. I know that the answers to some of the questions we asked did not come true with the passage of time.
Some interesting notes from Wikipiedia: Alice Cooper claims that an Ouija Board suggested that he was the reincarnation of a 17th century witch with the name Alice Cooper, and thus the band's name "Alice Cooper".
Poet James Merrill used a Ouija board for years, and even encouraged entrance of spirits into his body. He wrote the poem The Changing Light at Sandover with the help of a Ouija board. Before he died, he recommended people not to use Ouija boards
Bill Wilson the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous used the Ouija Board to contact spirits. His wife said that he would get messages directly without even using the board. For a while, his participation in A.A was deeply affected by his involvement with the Ouija board. Wilson claimed that he received the twelve step method directly from a spirit without the board and wrote it down.
So what's the bottom line on Ouija Boards? At worst, it is an instrument to put you into contact with the spirit world which the Holy Bible forbids, at best it is just novelty like those 8 Balls that you buy not to be taken seriously. My advice, stay away from them.
Copright 2007 by Gary Goodworth
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