How To Conduct A Seance
From time to time one of our readers asks to post something for you all to enjoy. And while we are skeptics here, and certainly do not endorse any activities described or make any claims about either their effectiveness or safety, we are also a source of shared knowledge rather than censorship. Only through expression of ideas does knowledge grow, either by proving them correct, or proving them wrong.
A séance or seance is an attempt to communicate with spirits. The word “séance” comes from the French word for “seat,” “session” or “sitting,” from the Old French “seoir,” “to sit.”
The following is from reader Prince Petropia, and can be found on his site, All About Occult.
I am a regular visitor of Ghost Theory and I am extremely fascinated by the type of articles you have. I just came to know that you also accept guest articles submitted by readers. So here is a post written by me, which I would love to have published on your site, hope you like it and find it worthy of being published at Ghost Theory:
How to Conduct a Seance
Are you interested in mediumship? Wish to contact a deceased relative? Want to communicate with a spirit haunting your house? Or are you just too curious about the otherworld? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this article is a must-read. Bear with me as I guide you through the step-by-step procedure for conducting a seance to communicate with the spirit world, as well as share some tips and discuss the pros and cons of mediumship.
Before we begin…
Before you begin there are a few things to consider. First, what is your purpose for holding the seance? This is the one thing that will determine how you conduct the entire seance. If it is to contact a deceased relative, you already know who you are trying to call. On the other hand, if you want to communicate with an entity haunting your house, you don’t really know who you are summoning, and whether it is good or bad, so proceed with caution. Either way, it is better for amateurs to hire a professional medium to guide them through the whole procedure. On the other hand, if illumination is your quest, you may want to do it on your own. But be sure never to ask silly questions like who is going to win the next day’s soccer tournament, as this only angers the spirit. Understand that the spirit has to cross worlds to heed to your call, and this is very painful. Thus you don’t want to anger it with such curiosities.
Some Basic Rules
For holding any seance, there must be a minimum of three people to participate. Out of these, only one will function as the medium, leading the task of summoning and communicating with the spirit, while others will only follow his lead. Now that you have the man-power, consider how you will be contacting the spirit.
Contacting a Spirit
You cannot simply expect a spirit to boom in a godly voice and answer all your questions once you have conjured it. You must provide it with a suitable means of communication, such as:
Ouija Board: A very popular method is using an Ouija board, which is a flat board engraved with several English alphabets, numericals, messages like “hello”, “goodbye”, “yes” and “no”. A heart shaped movable indicator called a planchette is rotated with fingers to point at letters and spell words on the board. The board also contains some images and symbols. The ghost, once conjured, uses telekinesis to rotate the pointer and answer your questions.
Pendulum: A simple pendulum can be used for divination too. The medium holds the pendulum in hand and asks questions to the spirit. If the pendulum swings sideways, the spirit is saying no, while a back and forth swing on the pendulum indicates a yes, and swinging round and round means the spirit is uncertain.
Spirit Rapping: A very old and efficient way where the medium asks the ghost a question, and then instructs it to answer by making rapping noises by tilting the table to a side. For instance, a single rap means yes. Similarly, complex raps can be used to spell out words and complete sentences.
Preparing the Environment
Now it’s time to ready the place and conduct the seance. Gather the participants and choose a little, empty room where you won’t be disturbed. Now choose a round or oval table around which you all must sit while holding the ritual. A round or oval table is preferred to a rectangular one as this fulfills the requisite for a circle needed in a seance. Now place some candles, light them up and put off all other lights. Place some aromatic flowers, bread and soup on the table to attract the spirit. Also, make sure your preferred contact method (Ouija board or otherwise) is at hand.
Holding the Seance
Now all the people must sit around the table, hold each other’s hand making a circle and close their eyes. It is good to begin by saying a prayer, which helps cleanse the environment and emanate positivity. Now everyone must concentrate on the spirit they wish to summon and then slowly ask the spirit to join you, very calmly and welcomingly. Now wait a bit. Now ask the spirit to provide a sign of its presence. Don’t ask for a specific sign, just be open to receive any signal. When you know that the spirit is present, try to communicate. Begin slowly with simple yes or no questions, and proceed little by little to the more complex questionnaire. Always be calm and respecting. However, be warned, at the very first sign of any rudeness from the spirit’s side politely ask it to leave, if it doesn’t abide, forcefully end the session by blowing off the candles and switching the lights on. Once done, thank the spirit for its help and slowly end the session.
Tips and Warnings
Although a seance may be very enlightening, there are some hazards and caution is necessary. Don’t do anything to disrespect the spirit and make it angry. Don’t force anyone to join a seance against their will and weak-minded folks and children should be kept away. For first-timers, it’s better to hire a professional, the entity you are calling isn’t necessarily good. Professional mediums know how to deal with such situations. Sometimes demonic entities may try to harm you with misinformation, such as telling you that you will die the very night, giving you a heart-attack out of fear and fulfilling its desire. Thus, be warned, be alert, and most importantly, know what you are doing. On that note, I will leave you to your successful seance and newfound illumination.
My name is Prince Petropia. The paranormal and the morbid are my hobbies. I am a student and the author of a spine-chilling paranormal and occult blog named All About Occult. Do visit my blog for bloodcurdling articles on morbid mysteries, dark religions, urban legends, aliens, afterlife, haunted locations, demonology and parapsychology.
The tradition of the seance reached a height during the Victorian era, and continued into the early 20th century, embraced by such notable people as Arthur Conan Doyle, Mary Todd Lincoln and Abraham Lincoln, and Franklin D Roosevelt. Also among those who have sought contact with departed loved ones, Harry Houdini was a believer in an afterlife or at least believed in the possibility and was a good friend of Arthur Conan Doyle. In his search for a true medium, Houdini’s expert eye at stage trickery recognized fakery in every medium he encountered. Debate continues on whether or not the secret coded message he left with his wife, to be delivered by him after his death was ever legitimately received. A single claim was made for success, but that claim is in question. At one time his wife believed, but in the years before her death she disavowed any claims of receiving a message from her husband from beyond the grave.
There was a time when I wanted intensely to hear from Harry. I was ill, both physically and mentally, and such was my eagerness that spiritualists were able to prey upon my mind and make me believe that they had really heard from him.
There is yet no proof that spiritualism is valid, or that consciousness continues after death, or that if it does that consciousness is able to communicate with the living. There exists a considerable body of anecdotes, most either by those who have financial gain in the public believing so, or by those like Bess Houdini and Houdini himself in those early days of trying to contact his deceased mother, who have a need to believe.
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