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planchettes.com - History of the Psychic Appliance...

   Introduction | The Ancient Devices | Spiritualism's Golden Age | The Industrial Revolution
   
Innovations of the 20th Century | The Electronic Age | The Future of Psychic Appliances

 

Psychic Appliance Innovations of the 20th Century

 

It may surprise you to learn that during the late 1800's through the early 1900's, great inventors like Thomas Edison continued to develop new psychic appliances. Thomas Edison consulted with several prominent mediums and concluded that if there is an afterlife and that we were able to communicate with it's habitants, that he would be capable of making a device which would make the communications as easy as possible. A great deal of controversy surrounds a special type of recording device which he was developing. Essentially, it was a very sensitive phonograph, with "an extra large horn as the spirits have their own way of speaking..." He felt that a sensitive enough recording device could possibly record "the voices" of the dead...

 

 
 

 

The dowsing community found great success in the mid 1900's with a new variation to their wares. The advent of the "L-Rod" was met with popularity never before seen in the dowsing community. The "L-Rods", as their name implies are "L" shaped rods, generally made from stiff wires. Some are as basic as bent coat hangers. Others have reported greater luck with more sophisticated systems. Some of these feature bearings or special handles which allow the tool to be even more sensitive. Some prefer wires produced from certain metals, frequently copper, silver or gold. There is a variation where the tips are constructed to hold various "target materials" as well as screw-on tips, made of specific materials. Mostly due to lack of media hype, the tools traditionally employed by the dowsers have not been besmirched with the occultophobia so common to devices like the ouija board.

 

 

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Ouija Boards in the Movies... Psychic tools such as the "ouija board" have made their way into the spotlight many times. We reminisce about some of our favorites.

The Truth About Automatic Writing Automatic Writing is a powerful ability which most of us have yet to explore. We examine the evidence on hand and attempt to explain this phenomenon as well as potentials which are hardly explored.

The "Ouija Board" - Fact, Fiction & Folklore The "ouija board" has been accused of many things. Some claim it's a direct link to the spirit world. Others would have you think that if you as much as went near one, you'd open the gates to hell and become posessed, just like the little girl in "The Exorcist..." We explore the FACTS and let the reader judge for themselves...

Do Spirits Write Books??? Via automatism and seances, many books have been published which credit supernatural entities with the authorship. We offer a synopsis of several well known, as well as nearly completely obscure books. We begin with discussing the "Seth Books", certainly the most famous of the lot. We also explore another book by well-resepected authors. In their book, they report to have communicated with famous "ghosts" including George Washington. Although this book is from 1882, they have some interesting things to report from entities living on Mars...

 

 

The History of Psychic Tools Psychic tools have a history going back thousands of years. We attempt to explain the evolution of these "devices" as well as show the connections between each of them. From the "pendulum board" used by Pythagoras through the most recent inventions.

Thomas Alva Edison and the Spirit World Thomas Edison is certainly regarded as one of the great minds of the ages. He has over 3,000 patents to his credit, more than anyone in history. Thomas Edison invented, among thousands of other things, the light bulb, the phonograph and many other "miracles of science" which we take foregranted today. Did you know that he spent years of his life building a machine which could communicate with the dead???

 

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“The Planchette” - Reprinted from the "Religio-Philosophical Journal" - July 2, 1887


 This French word means “little board.”  It is said to have been first used by a party of French monks, 40 years ago, in one of their monasteries.  The use of this strange three-legged tablet spread widely among the convents and among the higher circles until the Bishop of Paris issued an edict forbidding the use of this pretended vehicle of communication with the dead.  Dr. Henry Francis Gardner in 1859 brought one home from Paris to Boston, “the city of notions,” where it soon became all the craze.  Thousands looked at it as a toy, but multitudes as a revelation.  Some called it a mere thing, a bit of thin ash or walnut, heart-shaped, mounted on wheels and armed with a pencil, while others denied that it was a plaything and declared it to be something possessed by magnetism, odic force or Satan himself. 

One Planchette wrote, for example, that on Kelley’s Island [in Lake Erie] an Indian Chief was buried with $18,000 worth of jewels, and two men went to work.  The little wooden oracle allowed them to scratch out only a few inches a day.  A neighboring Planchette was consulted and pronounced—with more force than elegance—both men “— fools,” putting the d—d before instead of behind.  An Albany paper told of an inquisitive young lady who used one, in company with her lover.  “Shall we marry?”  “Yes.”  “When?”  “In two years.”  “Be happy?”  “Perfectly.”  “Children?”  “Boys and Girls.”  “How many?” 

The girl was thunderstruck when her Planchette spelt out, letter by letter, under her fair fingers, S,E,V,E,N,T— and she dashed the audacious imp to the floor, splitting his backbone through and through.  Seventy or seventeen?  Which?