Anybody who has spent any amount of time with an Ouija board knows what a planchette is, but those who are unfamiliar with the Ouija board have no idea. Essentially, the planchette is the pointer which is used on the Ouija board to spell out messages being sent from the spirits attached to the board. The planchette, literally translated from French to mean “little plank” can be made from a variety of different materials depending on the board. Each planchette is unique to each board, and while a planchette can certainly be replaced if it becomes lost or broken, the energy derived from each planchette is unique and could have an impact on the way messages are communicated from the spirits.
Originally, planchettes which were connected with particular spirit boards had a pencil or some sort of writing devices attached to them. The planchettes would then move about the board and log specific images or shapes, which were then brought to a medium to be read and deciphered. Reading these images was very much like what we associate with reading tea leaves or even reading Tarot cards: each medium could decipher or interpret these messages differently, making them sometimes an unreliable means of translating messages from the beyond to the living.
Later, as the planchettes evolved, they began being designed as a heart-shaped piece of wood with the point of the heart acting as the indicator. This type of planchette moves around the board and points directly to designated letters and numbers on the board. This became a far easier means of translating messages from the spirits to the living, as messages could be spelled out directly to the users of the Ouija board. These were often also made of planks of wood, and would sometimes have designs or messages on the planchette. One of the most famous sayings on a plank of wood is known as “mystic hand”, as a means of identifying this piece of wood as the mystical connection between users of the Ouija and the spirits.
As the Ouija boards continued to evolve to what we know them as today, the planchette is now made of plastic with felt tips on the feet to help it glide across the “board”, which strangely enough is no longer made of wood either. The plastic planchettes are far less expensive and easier to produce than the former wood pieces. The benefit of a plastic planchette is the pointer is often located in the center of the piece, with a viewer so that users can better decipher the messages being delivered to them. Plastic also moves more easily across the surface of the Ouija board, making it possible for weaker spirits and less energy to be needed in order to open the lines of communication.
The planchette for an Ouija board has evolved significantly since its inception. Where the piece was originally made of a piece of heavy wood with a pencil or writing instrument attached to it, it is now a light piece of plastic. In its early days, a medium was needed to decipher the messages being spelled out by the spirits. Now, any literate person is able to communicate with the dead via the planchette and an Ouija board.
- The activity of the planchette is not due to ghosts\spirits but to unconscious movements by those manipulating the pointer according to skeptics.
- To operate the Ouija board, one or more individuals place their fingers lightly on the planchette (without actually pushing it), while one person asks the question from the spirits.
- Two or more individuals with hands on the planchette make the spirit connection more stable according to some.