A Tool for Self Empowerment

Discovery through Dowsing

Girl Using Dowsing Rods
Girl Using Dowsing Rods. John Gollop / Getty Images

Divination Practices: Automatic Writing | Bibliomancy | Candle Wax Reading | Dowsing | Fortune Cookies | Ouija Board | Palmistry | Psychometry | Runes | Tarot | Tea Leaf Reading

Dowsing is the process of using a tool such as a pendulum or rod to discover things that cannot be discovered using our everyday senses. It is a term, which in the past has been associated primarily with the finding of water sources. Modern dowsers dowse for oil and gas, minerals, water, lost objects, lost people with perhaps one of the most common uses today being the use of a pendulum to determine one's state of health and whether particular medicines, supplements, etc. should be taken.

Dowsing Tools

A dowsing tool is nothing more than a communication device. In and of itself it has no power and no ability to move. Although no one knows how or why dowsing works, it seems that the movement of pendulums or rods are controlled through or by your subconscious (or something of that nature). Most experienced dowsers use all the basic dowsing tools. These are the pendulum, L-rods, Y-rod and the Bobber with the first two being easily made from materials on hand. Any object hung from a piece of string is a pendulum and a old wire coat hanger can be cut and bent into a L-rod. The tool chosen is usually just the most convenient one for the job at hand. As dowsing devices come in all sizes, shapes and materials, it is important only that you choose a tool that you're comfortable with for all instruments work equally well for experienced dowsers.

It is important not to impose any beliefs on yourself that a particular tool is better than another. If your favourite crystal pendulum isn't available, a washer hung on a piece of fishing line will work just as well!

Learning to Dowse

Dowsing is a skill that anyone can learn. It does take practice but then what worthwhile goal is ever reached without effort? Before you can practice you do need to discover what the movement of the pendulum or rod(s) mean. To simplify matters I will concentrate on using a pendulum. The various rods are employed most often for fieldwork.

Most dowsing can be accomplished by three movements - one for a YES/POSITIVE answer, another for NO/NEGATIVE, and a third for MAYBE/NEUTRAL (or a Rephrase the Question) response. Experienced dowsers may also count the number of swings or turns to determine depth of an item being searched for; rely on the movement of the instrument to determine the length of a particular treatment they're doing; etc.

The first step is determining what YOUR responses mean. Your responses may vary from another person's but that is fine - what works for you is all that counts!

  • Take your pendulum and hold the string or chain between your thumb and first finger, about 2 ‡ to 3 inches from the weight at the end.
  • Sit quietly for a few moments to centre and ground yourself. If you find that you are out-of-sorts in some way wait until another time when you are more relaxed.
  • While slowly swinging the pendulum vertically back and forth, mentally (or out loud) ask the pendulum to show you your YES movement by swinging in a circular direction. This will be clockwise or counterclockwise.
  • If there is little or irregular movement it might be beneficial to hold the pendulum over your right knee. Repeat the question "Please show me what my YES response is." o Repeat for a NO response (over the left knee if necessary).
  • Ask for your MAYBE response. Oftentimes it will be a back-and-forth swing at a 45 degree angle. It should be something quite different from the circular motions.

Now you practice, practice, and practice some more! You should start by asking questions that you know the answers to. For example, is my name Mary? Then you can move on to asking questions where the answer can be verified, such as "Are there any messages on my answering machine?" If you get a YES response, ask "Is there 1 message?" "More than 1 message?" "Is there 2 messages?" and so on.

Using Dowsing Charts

There are a number of dowsing charts available commercially or you can make your own. Draw a straight line about 6 inches in length. Then draw a semicircle above the line. Locate the centre of the straight line and from this point draw diagonal lines that intersect the semicircle (spread out like a fan). You can add numbers 0 to 100 (in increments of 10) for a percentage chart or mark the names of various remedies (Bach Flower, homeopathic) to see which ones you should take. Anything at all can be marked on the chart. Hold you pendulum at the centre of the bottom line and slowly swing it back-and-forth horizontally. Then ask a question such as "What is the percentage of likelihood that it will rain today?" The pendulum will swing in a diagonal back-and-forth motion over the correct figure.

Check with dowsing societies in your area for information on dowsing schools, books, annual conventions, etc. Joining a group of like-minded people to practice and fine-tune your dowsing is an excellent idea.

About This Contributor: Diane Marcotte has been a dowser for many years and is currently serving as a board member of the Canadian Society of Dowsers.