What is dowsing? It is an ancient art of searching for hidden things (water, precious metals, etc) using one of the senses that many of us are not even aware of possessing... reportedly 80% of people have this special gift - an ability to sense things not perceptible to others. Some of these people do not need any extra tools to do that - they just KNOW where is the best place to dig a well or where the gold treasure is hidden.

Most of people (including me) require a "prosthesis", that will help them to focus and read their body signals better. This is what dowsing rods are for... There are many different types and varieties of dowsing rods: from classical, Y-shaped to so called "Swiss" rods, which I will describe below. In fact, every dowser has his/her preference when it comes to this tool and majority of them make their own, unique rods (that they believe, work better than any other).

Why would anyone bother to dowse? Most of us don't need a well in their backyard and it is probably easier to use a metal detector to search for gold... Well, people in Europe and elsewhere believe that dowsing can be used for more important purposes. Underground streams and rivers ("groundwater") are thought to produce certain kind of unhealthy "radiation" that can cause cancer and other illnesses. Thus, one would presumably be better off building a house in a place devoid of these underground streams.

In fact, most of the castles, palaces, churches, hospitals and homes in the past were built after consultation with a dowser... The place to build a house was chosen carefully and if it was impossible to avoid building over underground sources of "radiation", different methods were used to neutralize it. A common practice was to add some organic material (blood, eggs, etc) to the cement used for the construction...

How can you tell if you are sleeping or working in an unhealthy spot? Some people just don't sleep very well in places like that - they may wake up tired, with headache... Others need help from a dowser. If there is no dowsers around, your pets can help you. Yes, your pets! Their instincts are not numbed by civilization like ours - thus they can use them to pick safe places to rest. Apparently dogs tend to choose healthy places to sleep, while cats like to sleep in places unhealthy for people. Other animals and plants can be also used as a guidance: ants like to build their hills over spots with high "radiation" levels and mistletoe grows exclusively over such spots.

You can also try to become a dowser yourself... Remember? 80% of us can do that... Follow the instructions below to test your dowsing skills....

STEP 1: Making your own dowsing rods
You will need two metal rods, each about 50 cm (20 inches) in length. You can use an old shirt hanger as a source of wire. You need to bend the wire (see the picture) to obtain two identical rods with "handles", so that there is a straight angle (90 degrees) between the handle and the main part of the rod. The handles should be approx. 10 cm (4 in) long.

I found it helpful to place several wooden beads on the handle. These beads should rotate easily. You can add a tightly fitting bead at the bottom of the handle to prevent other beads from sliding off the handle. This way balancing and holding the rods is much easier.

STEP 2: Holding your dowsing rods
It is crucial to hold the rods properly. You should place the handle of the dowsing rod in the middle of your palm, then close your hand.
Do not squeeze the rods too tight, they will not move. Hold them in such a way that the main part of the rod is parallel to the ground and attempt to keep them in that position at all times.
This is how properly held rods look like from above. They should be parallel to each other when you start your exercise.

STEP 3: Using your dowsing rods
Now is the time to test your new rods. Start walking slowly along a straight line holding the rods as described above.

You may notice that your rods move "by themselves" and cross over certain points as depicted on the drawing on the left. Remember location of these points and walk over them again - if you get same results repeatedly - you probably have talent for dowsing... GOOD LUCK !

To learn more about dowsing, please visit the home page of The American Society of Dowsers:


Slawek Wojtowicz 1998