Ghosts & Dowsing

Can you detect ghosts by dowsing? How do you dowse for ghosts?

Ghosts & DowsingDowsing is an ancient method of detection using Y-shaped branch or L-shaped divining rods, believed to reveal energy fields much like an EMF meter might do. Before we scoff at such a notion, we must keep in mind that unmarked graves and water wells have been detected by this method for many centuries. The older method of using a forked, wooden stick has given way to newer-style, brass rods.

To explain more about dowsing and the difference between rods, we have asked author, Sherri Brake, permission to excerpt from her book entitled, Haunted Stark County.

"Dowsing rods have been used for thousands of years to locate items that are lost or desired. In fourteenth-century France, they were used to locate silver for mining. Underground water sources, land mines, water and electrical lines, tunnels and graves are just a few of the ways that dowsing can be applied."

"Y rods are more commonly used for water dowsing or water witching. Y rods can be made from a variety of materials, with wood being the material of choice for many water dowsers. Tree limbs that fork into a Y are commonly cut and used for a period of three or four days for dowsing and then discarded. Hazel wood or witch hazel is preferred by many water dowsers."

The following are Sherri's recommendations for use of the L-shaped rods, which are the dowsing rods of choice for many ghost investigators who dowse for ghosts and spirits.

Dowsing Rods

"L rods are L-shaped rods. You grasp the short ends, one in each hand, as you hold the long length of the rod parallel to the ground. Materials used in L rods could be copper, brass, chrome or even plain old-fashioned metal clothes hangers. Some dowsers prefer to have wooden dowels or plastic sleeves placed on the handles of the rods to impede any conscious movement of the hand while dowsing. Others find that this allows too much movement of the rod....practice is most important with dowsing, as the more you dowse, the more it will come easily for you."

When dowsing for ghosts, people typically dowse similarly. The following method for dowsing ghosts appears to be the common practice implored by most mediums and ghost investigators:

  • Practice getting the feel of the dowsing rods, working to keep them level while keeping a clear mind. When both rods point outward, parallel to each other, and away from you, this is your "clear" position. When the rods cross to form an 'X', energy is detected.
  • Explore the environment, keeping the rods level as you walk about. With an open mind, follow where the rods point. This should lead you to energy. When the rods "cross," you have possibly detected a high electromagnetic frequency (EMF). This spike of energy in the environment is often believed to be a ghost or spirit.
  • Once energy is detected, most who dowse for ghosts will ask questions using the rods for divination. Asking "yes" or "no" questions, the rods will indicate a "yes" by crossing. A "no" will be indicated by the rods moving away (in the opposite direction) from one another. The idea is to gather as much information about the ghost or spirit as possible.
  • Perhaps, the ghost may desire your help. Be willing to help and open to communication, not giving into fear in any form. Also, be respectful and compassionate when communicating with ghosts and spirits.

Visit Sherri Brake's website Haunted History Tours at