I teased this in my Year of More post, so it’s finally time to talk about one of my favourite, forgotten hobbies: dowsing!
Dowsing is a type of divination that can take many different forms, from holding sticks above ground to tell where water (or graves) are located to incredibly complex mechanical devices used by the military. A common means of dowsing is to hold a pendulum. The pendulum’s movement indicates an answer.
How does it work? Well, that depends who you ask. Most people who believe in the practice subscribe to the theory that your subconscious causes minute muscle movements that cause the pendulum to swing in the direction of the correct answer. How do the muscles know which way is “correct”? That’s either magic, channeling or intuition, of course. To many more people, that puts the “how does it work” into the category of “hogwash”.
I’m a huge fan of archaic divination methods. Do I believe in dowsing? I’ve seen for myself how the pendulum can change direction with a question, and often to indicate a correct answer when the answer is known. This gives me a little belief in the subconscious muscle twitch theory. As future-telling? I think it’s an excellent meditation and a way to best practice how to ask for the future we want. (Less diplomatic: maybe.)
How can you dowse? No need for a fancy pendulum like the brand new moonstone beauty I just ordered. Previously, I’ve always used a sentimental necklace unclasped or ring tied at the end of a string. Pinch the end between your index finger and thumb and let your pendulum hang until it (mostly) stops moving. Focus intently on a question. It will begin to move. There are charts to help you understand the movement, but these vary so wildly that I advise you either build your own or choose your own system of answers. One I learned as a kid was the pendant swinging back and forth meant no, swinging in a circle meant yes. If the muscle twitch theory is correct, the system won’t matter at all; your subconscious will adapt to the system!