If you’re a fan of horror, you surely cannot forget those iconic ouija board scenes where some teens dabble with the dark arts. The blow always ends up with them highly regretting it. The ouija board has become a household item for many and brands many everyday items. From mugs to chopping boards to carpets, almost everyone knows what the board symbolizes.
It would be wise to learn more about the risks involved before just digging one out at a sleepover
There are very real dangers lurking around ouija boards. This means it’s tremendously important to understand what exactly you’re working with before attempting anything yourself. Spirits can be deceitful and dangerous, so getting to understand the path you may be taking could save you from awful events.
The first ouija board surfaced in 1886
From a very different time to ours, the first ouija board was made in 1886. Advertisements graced newspapers, describing them as thinking boards. People were led into believing that these boards helped provide answers to the unknown. They were described as able to guide people through past events, and current happenings and predict the future with “marvelous accuracy.”
Fun and terrifying, people started to discover a more sinister side to the ouija board
back then, the basic design was pretty similar t what we see today, with the same planchette we use today to navigate the board. People soon learned that the tool was a lot more sinister – the board enabled communication with the dead. Even Toys ‘R Us at one stage sold these bards, marketing them a mystical oracle.
People are naturally curious, even more so when it involves unexplainable events. We seek answers everywhere and look for messages in strange places. People also fear aging and death. Nobody knows with absolute certainty what happens when we die. So it’s only natural to be curious about these things,
“It’s always been a board game, a parlor game, but it has always been more than a board game for some people, too,” explains Robert Murch, a Ouija historian. “In the 19th century, people had a much different relationship to death than we do today—it was much closer to their everyday experience.”
“Now, we do everything we can in hopes of avoiding aging, let alone engaging in any real thoughts of death. But in the 1800s, people only lived to be 50 years old. Mothers would have 12 children and six of them would die. Their parlor rooms were also their funeral rooms.”
Read: Science Explains Why Some People See Ghosts, And Others Don’t
The door between two worlds
No matter what you decide to believe, the board remains a dangerous tool connected to the spirit world. A ‘game’ that enables you to communicate with the dead is no joke and opens you up to something beyond our world. Considering how easy it is to walk right in, it most likely is just as easy to enter from the other side.
We have absolutely no control over what may be on the other side. Where would you even start to get rid of anything negative that may make an appearance? Spirits are well known to latch onto things that give them attention or feed them energy. They are also notorious for not letting go of that connection very easily.
Unsure? Why not meet the maker himself
William Fuld, the maker of the first ouija board worked for and invested in the business that he eventually gained control of. He soon started experiencing unexplainable tragedies around him and strongly believed that the board was responsible. He even interviewed for the Baltimore Sun and told reporters that the ouija board told him to build a new factory on Hartford Avenue.
Tragedy struck while he was installing the flag on the new business. The iron railing broke, which led to him plunging to the ground. “On his deathbed—the coroner’s report said a broken rib pierced his heart—he made his children promise to never sell the Ouija out of the family,” says an expert.
He’s not the only one to have to succumb to the ouija board’s manipulation
The all-too-famous 1971 novel, The Exorcist was written based on true events. A 13-year-old was first introduced to the ouija board in 1949 and was soon thereafter possessed. He underwent a month-long exorcism by William Bowdern, SJ. The movie was first screened in 1973.
Demons have been known to masquerade as lost loved ones, preying on the weak and mourning. Even paranormal investigators steer clear of the boards and experts have warned that these ouija boards could invite all sorts of harmful spirits into your homes. They are not Halloween toys and should be respected.
A well-seasoned ghost researcher offers up some insight
“The board itself is not dangerous, but the form of communication that you are attempting often is,” says ghost researcher Dale Kaczmarek of the Ghost Research Society. “Most often the spirits who are contacted through the Ouija are those who reside on ‘the lower astral plane,’” Kaczmarek believes.
“These spirits are often very confused and may have died a violent or sudden death; murder, suicide, etc. Therefore, many violent, negative, and potentially dangerous conditions are present to those using the board. Often times several spirits will attempt to come through at the same time but the real danger lies when you ask for physical proof of their existence.”
“You might say, ‘Well, if you’re really a spirit, then put out this light or move that object.’ What you have just done is simple, you have ‘opened a doorway’ and allowed them to enter into the physical world, and future problems can and often do arise.“
The non-negotiables of playing with the board
If you are absolutely set on using one, make sure that you follow these strict instructions:
- Always announce your session as a positive only one, and refuse to allow or acknowledge anything of a sinister nature.
- Never ask for a spirit to reveal itself to you.
- Take the experience as something fun and never let things lead down a more serious road
- When you are done, close the board and ALWAYS say “goodbye” by sliding the planchette over the word on the board. Then remove your hands from it and breathe.
- “Ouija Board: Safe or Dangerous?” Live About. Stephen Wagner. January 15, 2019
- Aleteia. Philip Kosloski. October 28, 2020