The room was decorated with grinning Jack O'Lanterns and we celebrated in our costumes while Disney's The Haunted Mansion record played in the background. A few kids were on line for the Spider and Web craft, several more waited for the caramel apples, but the longest line was for the Ouija board. After quick instructions the first kids to try did not have much luck and quickly gave up. I tried with Margie and we got the planchette to move a tiny bit but not enough to spell out any cryptic messages from beyond.
Then the board seemed to warm up. Everyone that got a chance experienced some movement, but it never pointed anywhere--in fact it never stopped. It swung around and eventually moved in larger and larger circles. Sometimes it went off the edge. We took that as a sign that the 'spirits' wanted new participants.
About a half hour later we began asking question and got some answers. Our new friend from the great beyond was male and he was angry that we were bothering him. (We knew this because our teacher asked.) We asked what his name was, and the board did spell out a name, but I cannot remember what it was. Someone asked if he was stupid. My teacher said, "Be nice," and everyone laughed. But that was the last answer we got from the board. No one felt any motion after that and we all quit soon after.
The Ouija Board thrilled me. I went home and told my parents about how much fun we had during the day. They told us we had a board in the basement and they could not get it out fast enough for me.
Needles to say I was hooked. I played with my sister, friends, and neighbors. Then we started having seances. And we did levitation.
Soon after we moved to a new house and made some new friends. Our new basement was perfect for conjuring the dead. Of course we were scared a few times...we would have been scared just sitting down there with a single candle burning. It was huge and had plenty of creepy nooks and crannies. My obsession with the occult had officially bloomed. I guess Ouija is the gateway drug to more intense occult experiences.
Several years later my friend and I were wandering around NYC one afternoon and stumbled upon Weiser's Bookstore. Walking down a few steps we walked into what we discovered was a large and relatively famous occult bookstore started in 1929 by Samuel Weiser. (Weiser's still exists as an online bookseller and now publisher of esoteric and occult literature. http://redwheelweiser.com/p.php?id=2 ) . That day I purchased a pendulum for divination and spent many fun nights at parties reading fortunes. http://readersandrootworkers.org/wiki/Category:Pendulum_Divination
Then I moved on to Tarot cards. I had a knack for them and people began to ask me to read them again and again. The results were oddly accurate. Although I just said whatever popped into my head, half the time it meant something to the person I was talking to. People began to offer me money for the reading, and not a little bit. I began to study them more and more, and found them fascinating.
If you have followed this blog at all you know I have had my share of strange and seemingly supernatural occurances in my life. The house I lived in before this one seemed haunted. We would hear the silverwear shaking in the drawer, the television would turn on and off by itself, and worst of all my husband and I thought we were having conversations with one another, but no one was there.
I came home from work one day and saw my husband looking out our master bedroom window at the woods across the street. I was waving and trying to get his attention when the automatic garage door started opening, and my husband stepped out.
I got very upset and I don't think my husband paid much attention to my story until the night he was having a conversation with me in the laundry room and he turned around and I was not there. He called my name and I answered--from our third floor master bedroom.
We had the house blessed. In the very last room of the blessing (the master bedroom again) as the final blessing was said my jewelry box with a small angel fell off my dresses. The minister turned around and asked me "Did you do that?"
No. I did not.
Things slowed down then came to a stop after the blessing. We were happy and planning to start a family. We have since moved to a new house. Not too long ago I woke in the middle of the night. No windows were opened--it is cold here in October. I watched the bathroom door slowly open on its own, and stop before it could hit the bookcase.
I think American Horror Story would have a wonderful season if they based it on divination, but they certainly had fun last night with the circus theme.
A page from 100 Unfortunate Days about the dangers and delights of the occult:
I went to a store in town whose name that implies the things sold there will help you be successful.
When you go in the store you can smell the burning sage and other incenses— you can smell this all the way down the block. They sell books for alcoholics and drug addicts and people who want to commune with God or spirits. They also do tarot card readings and angel interpretations and anything else you can think of that will attract spirits or angels or demons into your life. I thought this seemed cool. The card reading said pertinent things to me.
But I don’t know if this is healthy.
After this I took a class in hypnosis, and then one in acupressure, and then I carried the little Angel Cards that I picked at each session with me. And something bothered me about it every time. My marriage was terrible and getting worse. I could feel my hatred for my husband growing by the minute. BUT I was being open minded and I thought reading cards and knowing the future and reading about the devil was a good thing because I was enlightened. I stopped reading the book about the devil dead-smack in the middle and took a train south. I pushed past any exhaustion I felt. I threw away the cards I’d kept tucked into my wallet—they had demons attached to them and so I prayed to St. Michael. I should pray to him every day—twice a day. I wanted a shell of protection like I read about in The Screwtape Letters—somehow I got it. I know I am safe now and I will not stray again.
Ha ha. Even as I say this I realize I am full of shit, especially when there is a full moon and I’ve had too much wine. I feel surrounded by spirits at night. They can be there and I can be safe. I think. I can laugh at them and know I am with God—and as I write those words I know I am lying. I don’t think I am one of God’s favorites. The insidiousness of it all is the most evil. It creeps in and finds a place with a pillow and cuddles up and you are not even sure it is there at first. You don’t know when it starts to creep in, but it’s funny how you can tell when it’s gone.
At least for now.