Ouija boards - don't play with fire?

I was talking to someone at work today about the occult, and the subject of ouija boards came up. This guy is a pretty level headed person, and not the type to believe in ghosts or the paranormal. However, he warned me against going any where near a ouija board.

He said that someone he knew had played around with one, and that the marker (planchette?) had moved and it scared the crap out of everyone. He said that the guy had put the board away in his daughter’s bedroom, in a drawer. He said that the daughter had very bad nightmares for weeks afterwards. It was only when the ouija board was thrown out that the nightmares stopped. He was being quite serious, and he warned me against experimenting with ouija boards, saying that it was “playing with fire”.

He is not the first person that I have spoken to who thinks that they are evil. Several people, whom I consider trustworthy, have told me that you should never even play with one, even as a joke.

I really don’t believe in the paranormal or communicating with the dead, or ghosts, but the story this guy told me put a shiver down my spine, none the less.

Have any of you played around with a ouija board, or tried using one seriously? Did anything bad happen? What are your experiences?

I played with a makeshift one (scrabble letter tiles and a tumbler) in my teenage years - at the time we were all very convinced, but looking back I don’t think there was much reason to be; we were pushing the glass around, that’s all.

I would consider it foolhardy only on the basis that people might freak out and do something stupid (as I believe has happened in some Chick comic or other - how about that for a reliable cite?), or ask for advice and follow whatever dumb answer they (appear to) get.

Sure, we fooled around with one numerous times as kids. Seems like just about everyone in the neighbourhood had one when I was a kid. Nothing bad whatsoever happened.

The planchette moved alright. But how do you know who was moving it when there are more than one person with their fingers on it? The only thing you can ever be sure of that it wasn’t yourself.

IMHO, the most dangerous thing about Ouija boards is the suggestibility of of some of it’s users. People in a fragile frame of mind really never should play with them, even as a joke.

Its just cardboard and plastic. If those items freak you out, I would avoid places like Wal-Mart, K-Mart and just about any other place with “Mart” in the name.

Now, as for fire, that can be pretty dangerous. Like they say (now), “Once burnt, Twice fried”. Learn not to burn.

Fagjunk Theology: Not just for sodomite propagandists anymore.

It’s tales like the one your friend told you about Ouija boards that make them seem to be more than they are. Shows you how powerful our imaginations can be to us. It also shows how otherwise intelligent people can hold on to ideas that are just plain wrong. I think the lesson is that we all need to decide things for ourselves and not base them on what other people necessarily think. Just because your friend has some things figured out correctly doesn’t mean he gets them all correctly. In the case of Ouija boards, he is caught in a superstition (I know someone will flame me for saying that…)

Unfortunately I think a lot of similar mumbo-jumbo exist out there that is just as silly. When this kind of superstitious thinking gets out of hand people can die.

Someone once told me that if you burn a Ouija board, it will scream. I was sufficiently scared by that to never go near one.

Weren’t Ouija boards created in this century by the same people who brought us monopoly?


I’d beleive John Edwards over the Parker Bros.

They’re plastic and pressed cardboard. With little felt circles. It has no inherent power. I used one to freak out a friend once when I was 13. She got nervous, and my co-freaker-outer and I came clean.

If anything, it’s probably just a case of too much energy/susceptibility (sp?) in one place Most likely, though, it’s the result of psyching yourself out. If you’re nervous, just leave it alone. You’re not going to gain anything from it, and you’ll probably just freak yourself out.

I pretty much agree with the opinions expressed here. I think it’s more to do with suggestion and susceptaboility than the paranormal. If you are playing with a ouija board, then you are probably in a room with the lights down low, maybe with some candles around. Everyone wants it to work, and that willingness can sometimes manifest itself in a false belief that something supernatural is happening. Ultimately I will follow the advice not to mess with it, and besides, I wouldn’t even know where to buy a ouija board anyway.

By the way, interesting fact about them also making monopoly… I had no idea!

I played with a Ouija board growing up, with my sister. Nothing bad happened. I am sure it was all in someone’s mind (I know I wasn’t consciously moving the thing), but we always got a guy named Chistopher who claimed to be my guardian angel. The one thing I do remember is that he “told” me I that I had already met the man who would be my husband when I was 15, and it did end up being true. I married a friend of a friend I had first met once at a party when I was 14 and didn’t see again until I was 22. But I am sure it was coincidence.
I still have my Ouija board in the back of the closet. Haven’t used it in at least 15 years.

The only superstition I was heard was that you were not supposed to use it alone or you opened yourself up for possession.


And, for good measure, Cecil thinks you’re wrong too.

Dangit, Garfield226, you just beat me to it on that SD column (which contains some good links on the subject as well).

" particularly like the part about having to prove that it works at the patent office. Be interesting to see how they did that." from cecils column

may i suggest that they tested it by asking the ouija board whether it worked and the planchette pointed to yes

I never figured out how to make them work, so I usally lost interest after a couple minutes. Hard to get scared in that circumstance.

Did I get a defective one? Are there supposed to be batteries in the little thing you move?

I was always the guy who moved around the little plastic thing. For some strange reason, it was always a little harder to push when you asked “who is the coolest person in the room?”

One time, this girl wanted to try to talk to her dead grandmother. I moved it to say “Hello Jennifer”. She totally freaked and didn’t show up in school the next day. Now she won’t even go near a board.

Some people have NO sense of humor.

Damn, looks like I’m horribly wrong! Eh, it’s not the first time…:smiley:

Actually, it takes takes 6 dead AA batteries. :smiley:

Will undead ones work?

That’s the spirit!