Since there are good and bad people in the world, it makes sense that there would be good and bad spirits. I assume that an earthbound spirit would remain more or less like they were in life. So it seems just as possible to run into a positive spirit as a negative one when playing with a Ouija Board. Playing with one of these boards is comparable to typing an opinion on an online message board and waiting to see what kind of answer you receive. You might hear from someone who agrees with you, someone you writes meaningless things you don't understand, or an angry person who says vile things to you. Negative responses from a Ouija Board or another internet user can be surprising and at times scary. This is because in both cases, you cannot see who you are communicating with. This adds a bit of mystery and excitement, but also a potential risk.
Awhile back, I was talking Ouija Boards with my blog buddy, Holly (who you may know as Hiyoko). Both of us own antique Ouija Boards. Mine was made during the 1950s, while hers predates the 1950s. The boards are quite different in style, since Hiyoko's board is Canadian and mine is American. Let me show you the differences. Here's mine:
This is the standard version most Americans are used to seeing. I took a photo of my 1950s board, but my 1990s board looks just like it. The planchette on the older one has a metal needle while the new one is all plastic. Here's Holly's Board:
Both of our boards were designed by William Fuld. Mine predates the ones released by Parker Brothers. Hers was made by The Canada Games Company.
After seeing a Canadian Ouija Board, I wanted to see a European one. According to my British sources, Ouija Boards were for the most part not sold in England. There is evidently only one shop in England where a person could get a board. That shop is The Sorcerer's Apprentice in Leeds. The board they offer actually comes with a dial you can spin.
This is the best photo I could find of that board. My blog friend Sandy, who you probably know from http://vainglorysinner.blogspot.com/ gave me some possible information as to why there aren't many Ouija Boards in England. She pointed me to various acts that have been passed. Basically, these laws have prohibited psychics from making a profit from any readings not advertised as "entertainment". Prior to that there was a "Witchcraft Act" banning witchcraft. If you would like to learn about the history of these laws, click Here and Here.
I have to share a favorite Ouija Board I ran into online. It was designed by the Halloween artist, Lew Lehrman. He mostly paints haunted house portraits from the photos people send him of their homes. Anyway, he designed the beautiful Ouija Board below. You can see it in more detail: Here
Here's another beautiful board!
This picture was sent to me by my blog friend Holly. (This is a different Holly from the one mentioned above.) You probably know this Holly from her blog: http://hollyshorrorland.blogspot.com/
Anyway, while Holly and I chatted about this blog post, she mentioned that he friend, Vanessa actually constructed her own Ouija Board. Vanessa did a really great job on this Emily the Strange themed board!
The planchette is adorable too! I just love Emily the Strange. If any of you have designed your own board, send a picture of it to me and I'll add it to this post!
As long as we're talking Ouija Boards, I have to share my favorite episode of I Love Lucy! This episode is titled "The Seance" and it aired in the first season of the show, back in 1951. If you've seen this episode, you know where I got the title for this post. :) You can watch it here in its entirety:
If you don't have 30 minutes to spare, here's a five minute video showing the highlight of the episode. All you really need to know going into this is that Lucy has planned a seance.
If anyone could tell me who plays the Mr. Merriweather character, I would appreciate it! I know I've heard his voice on some old radio programs and other TV shows.
This is probably not going to come as a surprise to you, but I've had some experiences with the Ouija Board. Mostly I was just goofing around with friends and receiving nonsensical messages. Sometimes the planchette would just hover around aimlessly. There was an incident where a candle somehow caught the tablecloth under the Ouija board on fire. Other than that, things were pretty uneventful.
I do have a scary personal story involving a Ouija Board, but the scary part doesn't involve me actually using it. When I was in high school, a friend and I double dated. The four of us would often hang out at her house. My friend's boyfriend had an "interesting" brother who had spent some time in prison. I'd heard a lot of stories about him. The main stories involved an underground Wiccan group he supposedly belonged to. Both my friend's boyfriend and mine swore they'd seen this guy break a window just by staring at it for a long time.
One day I was informed that his brother was being released from prison and would be hanging out with us on his first day out. I'll never forget the surly look that was on his face when I met him. He had long, wavy hair and was wearing a shirt with "I'll sleep when I'm dead" printed on it. He didn't say "hello" back when we met, and he continued his silence through the entire night! I seriously did not hear one word from this guy.
Well, the four of us hung out and watched a movie at my friend's house for a few hours, while the grumpy brother sulked by himself in the corner of the room. After a while, we got bored and decided to play with the Ouija Board I'd brought over. We had messed around with the board many times before, so this was nothing new. The only difference this time was that we could not get the planchette to move. Not one bit. We tried for an hour or so! All the time we patiently waited for the Ouija Board to get in gear, I had the weirdest feeling. It's hard to explain the feeling I had, but it was a little like the uneasiness you feel when you're being watched but you're unable to see who is watching you.
The next day at school, I ran into my friend. She told me that she'd talked to her boyfriend on the phone and he told her that his brother put some kind of cast over the board so we would be unable to use it! Evidently, he thought Ouija Boards were evil.
I realize that it's a little difficult to see what's going on here. This is more or less a Ouija Board printed on a light blue background with an angel in the center. I find it interesting that many people online call the original Ouija Board evil, but say this is one is alright. I would be curious to try this board right after using the original Ouija Board to see if the results were any different. Some people believe that we are all moving the planchette ourselves, as our subconscious spells out the messages. If this is the case, our subconscious might believe the Angel board is safe and therefore spell out something nice?
I'm honestly not sure what I believe about Ouija Boards. In my experience they are fun and entertaining, but we've all heard the horror stories others have had with them. Sometimes I know my friends were moving the planchette to freak me out, other times it felt like it was lightly gliding along by itself. Sometimes it would just hover near "goodbye". I'm going to keep an open mind, like I do with a lot of "occult" topics. I think we shouldn't fear what we don't understand, although I know that's a natural reaction sometimes. Maybe a little bit of wariness balanced with curiosity is healthy.
Oh, and you know I had to add something spooky to this blog post! The message in this video is eerie, even if you think the guy is moving the planchette, himself.
So...What I'd like to know is:
I'm sure that many of you have personal Ouija Board stories and I would love to hear them!