Upon reading chapter two in the course textbook about research methods, I came across the section about facilitated communication. With facilitated communication, the facilitators unknowingly guided the fingers of the children toward the keyboard, and the resulting words were coming from the facilitator's minds, not the minds of the children. I enjoyed reading about the various examples, but the one which struck me as the most interesting was the part about Ouiji Boards. According to the textbook, a Ouiji Board is "a popular device used by spiritualists to communicate with the dead." I consider a Ouiji Board as a fun and interesting game to play with my friends when we are bored. When using a Ouiji Board, everyone puts their hands on a central pointer which is guided around to spell various things like names, ages, and anything else a "spirit" wants to tell the participants. I myself have never been able to successfully communicate with the dead with a Ouiji Board but a group of people I know were able to "successfully" contact the dead when they tried. When I asked them about it they were all convinced that they had reached another world. I admit, the stories that they told me were so elaborate and they were so convinced, that it was hard for me not to believe them. Although there are no studies which can prove that Ouiji Boards are real, or that it is even possible for a spiritualist to contact the dead, when others tell stories about their experiences, it is hard not to get wrapped up in the excitement. The excitement is what often helps guide the central pointer and even though the participants may think that there is another force guiding the pointer, it is the participants who are doing all of the work. Here is an example of a man who had an experience in which he was able to contact a spirit and when you watch his account it is very tempting to believe him even though there is no research to back it up.
Does anyone else agree with me that it is easy to get caught up in all of the anecdotes and believe something as unbelievable as Ouiji Boards?
Does anyone have any accounts of being able to successfully contact the dead?