AUGUST 2012 www.visionaryliving.com
In this issue: Book News... Media News... Mailbag Q&A on Body Dowsing and Table Tipping… August Media & Events... Feature Article: First Ouija Museum Exhibit Opens in Baltimore... Discover Your Past Lives Weekend... Special Events in 2012... E-books by Rosemary... New and Recent Books in Print at Visionaryliving.com
BOOK NEWS: OUIJA GONE WILD, TALKING TO THE DEAD, GUIDE TO THE DARK SIDE OF THE PARANORMAL
Ouija Gone Wild, which I have co-authored with Rick Fisher, is in its second printing and will soon be available on Kindle in e-book format. Hard print autographed copies are available at my website shop. This is the most comprehensive book written to date on the alluring talking board. The book features dozens of riveting stories, the history of the board, the influence of films on popular opinions, and much more!
I have been on the airwaves a lot discussing the Ouija. Check out these two radio shows in archives:
Talking to the Dead, which I co-authored with George Noory, has been selected by One Spirit Book Club. The book is about progress in using technology in spirit communications, and whether high tech will succeed in delivering proof of the afterlife. Hardcover copies are available at my website shop.
Joey Madia reviews my Guide to the Dark Side of the Paranormal, stating that "this quick-reading guide serves to both educate and protect the reader" in its coverage of 20 topics. Read the entire review here. Dark Side is available in print at my website shop and on Kindle as an e-book.
MEDIA NEWS: STRANGE DIMENSIONS RADIO SHOWCASE MOVES TO A NEW HOME AT SEPIA
"Strange Dimensions with Rosemary Ellen Guiley," my radio feature program, is moving to SEPIA Radio Network in September, where I will join co-hosts Eric and Jess Dionne on their show SEPIA RVP on Tuesday nights from 9-11 PM Eastern. My half-hour special segment will air once or twice a month on their show, and will focus on developments in my research, investigations and cases.
I launched "Strange Dimensions" last year on Para-X Radio as a twice a month short segment on Dave Jones's Sunday night show, which was a wonderful home. Dave is bowing out of his Sunday show as well as much of the management of Para-X Radio. I wish him well in all his endeavors!
Meanwhile, I am excited about working with Eric and Jess, who have featured me as a guest on their show in the past. The new schedule will be in my September newsletter.
MAILBAG Q&A: BODY DOWSING and TABLE-TIPPING
Q: What is body dowsing?
A: Dowsing is a form of divination usually done with a tool such as a pair of rods, a forked stick or wire, or a pendulum. Dowsing is valuable in paranormal investigation as well as a host of other activities. Body dowsing is a variation in which the body itself is the primary sensing tool. Many paranormal investigators may not realize that they are using body dowsing when they sense the unseen environment or spirit presences during investigations.
Dowsing has been in use all over the planet since ancient times. It is used to find underground sources of water, coal, oil, gas, and minerals, and even lost objects. Dowsing also is used in spirit communications and in energy healing.
Earlier dowsers often used forked sticks of certain kinds of wood. Today dowsers usually use L-shaped rods of copper or other metal, or pendulums made of metal, crystals, or stones. The response of the device is tied to the intuition and to a sensitivity of the dowser. Anyone can learn how to dowse, and the choice of tool is personal preference. Even wire clothes hangers bent into a V shape can do the job.
In body dowsing, attention is paid to how the body responds to questions asked, or to an environment. Responses depend on the individual, but can include shifts in posture, involuntary movements, and tactile sensations such as heat and cold, tingling, a “thickening” of the air, and so on. Information may also be conveyed mentally, with thoughts, words and images that spring into the mind.
I have used both dowsing with tools and body in paranormal investigations, and recommend that investigators learn to pay attention to their body as one of their best tools. Notice how the body responds to the environment at an investigation site, as well as how it responds to people you interview, and to objects that you touch. You can ask specific questions for dowsing as well. You can dowse the best places to set up investigation equipment and collect EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomena.) You can dowse yes-no answers to questions about the site and its history.
All forms of dowsing deliver accurate information, sometimes in more detail and more efficiently than electronic devices. Sometimes simple really is better. For more information, as well as some helpful steps in teaching yourself how to do body dowsing, visit the American Society of Dowsers site.
Q: Is table tipping real? Do spirits cause the table to move?
A: Throughout history, human beings have tried many methods of communicating with the spirit world. One of the strangest is table tipping, (also called table tilting and talking table) based on the idea that spirits can communicate by moving a table in unnatural ways in response to questions.
I have experimented with table tipping myself, and while it is not an efficient means of communication, it can be a mind-jolting experience. I have seen tables behave in ways that I cannot explain, as though they are possessed by a mind and power capable of performing feats that are, on the face of it, impossible.
Table tipping caught on in spiritualist seances in the mid-19th century. People were fascinated by ways to contact the dead. When groups gathered around tables to sit in the dark with a medium, they discovered that sometimes the spirits seemed to rumble the table around as part of their display of physical feats. Demonstrations were performed by mediums in which sitters placed their hands lightly on top of the table, and the medium asked spirits to communicate by moving the table in certain ways, such as rocking back and forth, tipping up on one or two legs, or levitating into the air.
Table tipping actually was known prior to spiritualism. Scientists who went into remote parts of non-Western countries observed shamans moving objects and making banging noises without any obvious physical contact, and supposedly with the cooperation of spirits.
In Europe, Britain and North America, where spiritualism became popular, table tipping was controversial from its beginning, especially when some mediums were exposed of fraud by moving tables by surreptitious means.
In 1853, physicist Michael Faraday tested a "talking table" by taking two wooden boards and placed glass rollers between them, all fastened together with rubber bands. A slight push on the upper board would cause it to slide over the lower board. Faraday found that the table would move even when people were convinced they did nothing to affect it themselves. His conclusion: unconscious muscular action.
Faraday and other skeptics did little to quell popular interest in table tipping, however. The famous and controversial medium D.D. Home produced not only tipping tables but levitating tables, witnessed by poet Robert Browning. The eminent scientist and psychical researcher Sir Oliver Lodge opined that table tipping was a genuine spirit-produced phenomenon.
When spiritualism and physical mediumship waned by the mid-20th century, table tipping also fell out of fashion. It has since enjoyed a rebirth of interest. Along the way, some astonishing photographs have been taken during controlled seances that have never been explained as fraud or unconscious muscular action. Seances runs by Canadian physician Thomas Glendenning Hamilton produced amazing photographs levitating tables.
Do spirits really move a table? Or are the motions the result of explosive psychokinetic energy built up by group concentration during a session? In Toronto, a group of researchers in the 1970s created an artificial spirit, "Philip," and were able to produce unusual table effects. Since Philip wasn't a real spirit, the explanation seemed to point to group psychokinesis.
I have participated in table tipping sessions where heavy tables rock back and forth violently, stand up on one leg and tilt backwards to the point of nearly keeling over -- and then slowly return to all four legs on the floor. I have seen tables shimmy across floors. When a table is in extreme motion, it is nearly impossible to keep your hands on it, let alone manipulate it. Spirits or human PK? Maybe it is a bit of both. Some of the people who are adept at table tilting have marked mediumistic abilities.
AUGUST MEDIA AND EVENTS
August 3-5 -- Alchemical Tarot intensive workshop weekend with Robert Michael Place, Norfolk, CT.
August 6 -- The Chosen radio show with Ronnie Mills, 8-9 PM Eastern. Topic: Guide to the Dark Side of the Paranormal.
August 6 -- Dead Air radio show with George Lopez, 10-11 PM Eastern. Topic: Ouija Gone Wild.
August 10--11 -- Michigan Paracon III, Kewadin Casino, Sault Ste. Marie, MI. Presentation on Shadow People.
August 12 – The Conspiracy Show with Richard Syrett, Zoomer Radio AM 740 in Toronto. Special show on the Ouija.
August 25 -- The Alchemical Tarot workshop, Talisman, Monroe, CT, 10 AM - 4 PM.
FIRST OUIJA MUSEUM EXHIBIT OPENS IN BALTIMORE
By Rosemary Ellen Guiley
Baltimore, the birthplace of the commercial Ouija board, hosts the first ever and most extensive museum exhibit devoted to the divination device, thanks largelly to the efforts of Robert Murch, one of the world’s foremost experts on the board. The exhibit, titled “Let the Spirit Move You: Ouija, Baltimore’s Mystifying Oracle,” runs August 7, 2012 through January 27, 2013 at the Baltimore Museum of Industry.
Earlier this month I had the privilege of previewing the exhibit, literally as it was being put together. Several collectors of Ouija boards and related early spirit communication devices loaned pieces to make a fascinating tour of Ouija history. Some of the boards on display are rare, like the electric Ouija in the photo right. The exhibit also includes early divination devices similar to the Ouija; tools used in spiritualist séances; a collection of toys and objects marketed by William Fuld, the man who established the Ouija in the mass culture and media; and photographs related to the origins and manufacture of the Ouija.
Curators of the unusual exhibit are Murch, of Dorchester, Massachusetts, and Brandon Hodge, of Austin Texas, who contributed boards and devices in their own collections, and Mike Buchner, of Baltimore, a Ouija researcher, collector and historian, who contributed William Fuld toys and products. “This exhibit could not be possible without the efforts of a group of collectors,” Murch told me. “All of us have important pieces, but none of us has them all.” (Photo: From left, Brandon Hodge, Mike Buchner and Robert Murch in front of one of their dislay cases.) Others who contributed items from their private collections are Kathy Fuld, the granddaughter of Ouija manufacturer and marketing genius William Fuld; and Andrew Vespia, Calvin Von Crush, Tim Gross and Janet Mattei-Romano Curran.
The exhibit highlights the history of how the Ouija was born in Chestertown, Maryland and manufactured in Baltimore from 1980-1966, when it was sold to Parker Bros. Murch has spent more than 18 years tracking down boards, memorabilia and history, and has been aided by the MarylandArchives, Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore City Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation, the Baltimore Mayor's Office, the Fuld families, the Historical Society of Kent County, and Hasbro, Inc., the current manufacturer of the board.
Murch said that researchers and collectors are always finding new information about the early days of the most popular divination device ever invented in modern times. The Ouija appeared commercially in 1892, and its origins have long been uncertain. The creators of the board seem to have gotten the idea from an earlier version used in Ohio in the late 19th century. A March 1886 newspaper article in the Baltimore Sun and New York Tribune described the device and quoted a politician denouncing it as “devil board” – not because of any associations with the demonic, but because people were so fascinated by it they were neglecting their jobs and chores. (Photo: Various versions of the Ouija.)
William Fuld, who consolidated the manufacturing monopoly of the device, liked to promote an aura of mystery around it, especially about the name. Different stories were told: the name was given by spirits; it meant “yes” in French and German, and so on. Letters recently discovered have finally revealed the real story. The patent for the board was issued in 1891 to Elijah Bond, a patent attorney, who assigned half of it to Charles Kennard, the first manufacturer of the board. Bond, his sister-in-law, Helen Peters, and Kennard asked the board what it wanted to be called, and it spelled out OUIJA, which the board said meant “Good Luck.” Interestingly, Helen was wearing a locket at that session that had a woman on it and the word “Ouija” engraved below the figure. Did the board really name itself – or did her subconscious do it?
Until the 1970s, the Ouija was primarily an entertainment device. Hollywood films gave it a dark spin in horror films, and ever since, the board has been both loved and feared -- but always popular.
The history of the board into recent times is recounted in my book Ouija Gone Wild. Hasbro Inc., which has owned the board since 1991, estimates that since 1967, 13 million Ouija boards have been manufactured. No one knows the exact number made from 1892-1967, but Murch estimates the number to be in the hundreds of millions. "Ouija" and "The Mystifying Oracle" ae registered trademarks held by Hasbro.
Of equal interest to boards are the other spirit communication tools in the exhibition: séance planchettes, trumpets, and dial plates, assembled by Hodge, who has more than 100 such devices in his personal collection. Hodge became interested in the Ouija and spirit communication tools when he started working at a magic shop and learned card tricks and then bizarre magic. In his own act, he used old props such as Ouija boards for engaging audience participation. (Photo: A seance trumpet is surrounded by an early Ouija board and spiritualist planchettes.)
Planchettes – platforms with three legs, one of which was a pencil for writing spirit messages – were produced on a mass scale during the height of the séance craze, but were supplanted by the Ouija by the 1940s. Today these and other early spirit communication tools are still sought by collectors.
Buchner started collecting Ouija boards, then began trading them for other items, including some of Fuld’s inventions such as the return pool table and collapsible kite. Fuld manufactured much more than the Ouija board: doll and toy furniture, bean bag tosses, ring tosses, various game boards, Ouija jewelry, and even a snake oil remedy for arthritis called Ouija Oil. Some of these items are featured in the exhibition as well. (Photo: A Fuld dollhouse.)
So, join in a bit of history-making by viewing the first-ever Ouija museum exhibit. A grand opening reception is planned for the evening of October 25. In addition to the exhibit, your visit comes with another paranormal bonus – a resident ghost in the museum who plays with lights!
If you have the time, visit the Green Mount Cemetery in Baltimore where Elijah Bond is buried. A few years ago, Murch was instrumental in having a unique monument erected at his grave -- on one side of it is a design of the Ouija board.
DISCOVER YOUR PAST LIVES WEEKEND WORKSHOP
November 9-11, 2012: Join me for a Discover Your Past Lives workshop weekend in partnership with Tonya Madia, certified yoga instructor and Reiki master, in Parkersburg, West Virginia at the elegant, beautiful Blennerhassett Hotel! Our program will include several group regressions for discovering significant past-life information, integrating your discoveries into the present, dreamwork, optional yoga, and optional bodywork services, private readings, and more. Click here for details and registration.
My book Soul Journeys: Past Lives & Reincarnation provides an overview of reincarnation and past-life recall, and some of the most intriguing cases documented.
SPECIAL EVENTS IN 2012
THIRD ANNUAL MICHIGAN PARACON
I will present on Shadow People at this year's MIParacon, held at the Kewadin Resort and Casino in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, on August 10-11. I'll also be on a panel with Jeff Belanger and others for a live taping of Jeff's hilarious Thirty Odd Minutes TV show. Don't miss the fun! I was a presenter last year and am looking forward to another great event!
TENTH ANNUAL MOTHMAN FESTIVAL
It gets bigger and better every year! I absolutely love the Mothman Festival in Pt. Pleasant, West Virginia, which this year will take place September 15-16. I have been a featured speaker since 2004. My topic this year will be "Strange Creatures of West Virginia," based on my new book, Monsters of West Virginia.
UNIVERSAL LIGHT EXPO
Columbus Day weekend, October 12-14, I make my first appearance as a featured speaker at the fabulous Universal Light Expo in Columbus, Ohio. My showcase presentation features the Djinn, Shadow People and ETs. In addition, I will give a complimentary presentation on interdimensional portals. Visit me and Tonya Madia at our booth in the vendor hall. See you there!
NECROMANTEUM AT THE FESTIVAL OF THE DEAD
It’s not too early to plan your Halloween adventures! Come to Salem, Massachusetts, where the Festival of the Dead rocks all month long! This year I join the headline events guiding an evening of spirit communication via black mirrors: “Portal to the Spirit World: Through the Necromanteum.”
Participants will learn about black mirror gazing for contacting the spirit world and then immerse themselves in their own private session. Light refreshments conclude the journey.
Attendance is very limited for this special premiere event at OMEN on October 25. Register early at Festival of the Dead.
SOUTH OF SALEM WITCHES’ BALL
I am delighted to be a special guest, courtesy of Karen Jetté Benson, at the 2012 South of Salem Witches’ Ball in Wrentham, MA on Saturday, October 27. This year’s ball will be a formal white and black masquerade. How exciting! A portion of the proceeds will benefit Rolling Thunder, a veterans’ advocacy group. Click on the banner for information.
E-BOOKS BY ROSEMARY
I have several titles from my own press available on Kindle. Click on the titles or covers for more information and to order.
Rosemary Ellen Guiley’s Pocket Dream Guide and Dictionary, everything you need for dream interpretation in one compact book! The guide includes an overview of dreams, tips for interpreting dreams and improving dream recall, and a dictionary of more than 600 of the most common and useful symbols.
Develop Your Miracle Mind Consciousness, a helpful guide for staying on top of 2012, a dragon fire year. Examines the states of consciousness conducive to miracles and practical tips for developing a daily "Miracle Mind Consciousness."
examines the evidence for reincarnation and the ways that a soul might return to physical form. Famous cases investigated by scientists and experts are featured, as well as original cases from Rosemary's research. Karma, relationships, soul mates, phobias and past-life healing are discussed. Want to know who Jim Morrison of The Doors was in a past life? Get the book!
NEW AND RECENT BOOKS IN PRINT AT VISIONARYLIVING.COM
To order autographed copies, click on the covers or here.
Ouija Gone Wild (see above in newsletter) is in the shop! $18.95 plus s/h.
Rosemary Ellen Guiley’s Guide to the Dark Side of the Paranormal is now out in a paperback edition, fresh off the Visionary Living, Inc. press. The book features 20 articles on dark side topics in the paranormal, occult and ufology, including Shadow People, the Djinn, curses, demons, Men in Black, dream invasion, sex with entities, vampire UFOs, and more. $12.95 plus s/h.
This paperback is available only on my website bookshop and at my events. It is also available in e-book format from Kindle at amazon.com.
Monsters of West Virginia is out from Stackpole Books. The Mountain State teems with strange creatures! Read about Mothman, the Flatwoods Monster, the Grafton Monster, Bigfoot, thunderbirds, mystery cats, werewolves and other oddities. In addition, I discuss possible explanations for mysterious creatures from the perspective of multi-dimensional realities. Even if you don’t live in or visit West Virginia, it is an excellent introduction to the realm of the crypto-creatures, and to explanations for how and why they appear. They are everywhere!
$12.95 plus s/h.
“Strange Dimensions” is copyright Visionary Living, Inc., 2012.