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Divination as a Research Tool


Divination as a Research Tool

This group is for the discussion of the use of dowsing, pendulums, and other divination tools as a research tool in genealogy.

Members: 7
Latest Activity: Jan 7, 2015

Using Non-Traditional Methods in Research

In search of answers and reasons for my own wherefores and whys, I studied everything from tarot to past lives and regression for seven years on my own and formally in classes at the Learning Light Foundation in Anaheim, CA. Once I was solid and comfortable with my life, I went onto other interests.  Recently, I have been determined to find the grave of my 4xgreat grandparents, Christopher and Catharine Turnpaugh. My initial assumption and that of my co-conspirator in Turnpaugh genealogy, Kim Turnpaugh Anderson, was that they were buried on the family property, which at the time, was located in Reisterstown, MD.  After their deaths, the property was sold then given to charity to form the first girls boarding school in the U.S., The Hannah More Academy. In recent years, the property was improved upon and according to Baltimore County, "bulldozed, cleared, surveyed," etc. and "if there were graves on the property, we would have known."  Well, following that,  I exhausted the cemetery records for Baltimore County,Baltimore City, Carroll County, and Harford County, Maryland.  I made personal calls to each of the cemeteries when possible, searched findagrave (hah! if someone on findagrave could find these graves I would have found these graves by now). A few weeks ago, I went to the Reisterstown property and found the front steps to what would have been Christopher an Catharine's residence.  Of course, I sat on the front steps of "my house" and ate lunch - just because.  As I sat there, I looked around thinking, what would the property have looked like in 1801? Off to my left was a good sized piece of forested and overgrown brushy area.  Bulldozed? Cleared? I think not.  Once I got home, I began researching "how to locate unmarked graves."  That led to locating graves by dowsing which led to articles of scientific studies as to the accuracy of dowsing in locating unmarked graves. Yes, dowsing has been found to be accurate (very accurate depending upon who is making the claim) in locating unmarked graves. A light went off in my head. One of my teachers at the Learning Light Foundation had used dowsing rods as a form of spirit communication and had demonstrated them in class one night. I've known others who dowsed and swore by it. Could this knowledge from my past interests and endeavors transfer into my historical and genealogical work? If so, there was an untouched skill set waiting to be used.  

Two weeks ago, while visiting Jim Avery in Gettysburg, I purchased a set of dowsing rods at a local shop. Digging further into my recollections of prior dabblings in psychic/spiritual phenomena, I selected a pendulum for yes/no questions ... "just in case".  The next day, my son, Derek and I went to the Reisterstown property.  First, I decided to let Derek handle the dowsing rods as he was neutral on the subject of Christopher and Catharine. Second, because he had no prior experience with psychic/spiritual phenomena. We left all electronic devices - cell phones, Ipods, etc. in the car. Spirit likes to play with electronic devices, electric lights, etc. I followed Derek onto a path in the forested area. The rods immediately responded, directing him toward two ancient pine trees standing in a clearing.  The trees were so huge that they must have been there when the land was first settled by John Reister. I followed with the pendulum in my hand.  As we approached the tree on the right, Derek said, "I think Christopher is at the tree on the left. I've been asking just for "the grave." Let me ask for "Christopher's" grave. The rods pointed to the tree on the left. I then asked two yes/no's of the pendulum.  "Is Christopher's grave beneath the tree on the right?" I got a "no" response. I asked "Is Christopher's grave beneath the tree on the left?" I got a "yes" response. I began to walk in the direction of the tree on the left and the pendulum broke with the quartz lying on the forest floor.  As Derek stood there, the rods completely crossed and hugged him by touching his upper arms. The woman who had sold me the rods had said "I've heard if there is a spirit present, the rods will cross and hug you." Later in the day, we returned to the site and I took the dowsing rods and walked the path. I asked for Catharine's grave and was led to the tree on the right side.  As I stood over the graves, the rods crossed and hugged me.

Of course, none of this is proven fact, and not sufficient to request that the site be excavated.  I am in touch with two archaeologists but before an excavation is done to prove that there are graves at the site, I want more evidence that there may be a grave(s) there. There is a change in vegetation at the site but is this change one that indicates a grave?  One of the archaeologists said to look for periwinkle as he has typically found a grave when he finds periwinkle growing on the potential site.  What does periwinkle look like when it hasn't bloomed?

Later in the week at home, I conducted a handful of experiments with the dowsing rods. I stood in the bathroom parallel to the sink and ran water. The rod on the right moved toward to sink but did not cross. Kim did some of her own research into dowsing rods, specifically how they reacted to water (and sent an email to land management asking for information regarding the water table in the area) and how they reacted to bodies (live and otherwise). She suggested that either myself or Derek lie on the floor and the other stand above with the rods and see how they responded. As I am NOT getting down onto the floor with an artificial knee, Derek laid on the floor and I stood above him with the rods. They moved in unison toward the center and stopped about four inches apart. Testing as to if they responded to me and my own feelings, etc., I stood in the living room and asked to point to each of my cats by name.  There was no response even though I used their names and they are living beings creating energy. When I asked to point to Derek, they pointed in his direction.  When I stepped away and said, "Christopher", they crossed and touched my upper arms.

Next, of course I called Kim and said, "Guess what??"  As we talked on the phone, I picked up the pendulum and began asking yes/no questions directed at Christopher, questions I knew the answer to, questions I had no answer to, questions that I was neutral as to the possible outcome. When the pendulum was "idle" as we chatted, it began to make dancing-like movements. As Kim and I talked, her landline kept disconnecting.  At one point, she said, "It would be nice to ask questions and obtain more than a yes or no."  

The night before last, I decided to do some research into different ways a pendulum could be used and if it had ever been used with a circle of letters and numbers, etc.  I found many articles on the history, usage, accuracy, etc. of the pendulum and how to set it up to use as a board with letters and numbers. I will NOT use a quija board and no one I had encountered at the Learning Light Foundation condoned using one. On the other hand, yesterday after work, I bought the supplies to make my own board, went home, put it together, and tried it out.  Using pressboard (sticky surface), stick on letters and numbers, and an image taken from by the Hubble telescope, I placed the letters and numbers in a circle. Although it was after 10:00 p.m. and way past my bedtime, I was determined to try this out. By midnight, I was done and gave it a single try before calling it a night:

I held the pendulum over the board and I asked for Christopher.  I had not paid any attention to the placement of the letters other than evenly spaced, alphabetical. The pendulum started to move, first in a circle and then from side to side from the C (Christopher) to the T (Turnpaugh).

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Comment by Jane Jones on August 17, 2012 at 10:39am

For several years I have used dowsing rods to find wells for friends and neighbors. Then I discovered pendulums and started using that to validate my family history research. Most people will think you are way out there but as for me, I just wanted to tell you that you are not alone in using a pendulum. I also agree with you about not using ouija boards. I've had my own scary experiences with that. Pendulums are about as New Age as I'll get. I'm going to make a board like you did because yes and no answers can get really limiting. Thanks for being brave enough to put this online. 


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