What Is the Bible’s View?
The Ouija Board—Harmless Entertainment?
“EXPLORE the mysteries of mental telepathy and the subconscious with this time tested favorite. The Ouija talking board is a great mystery, and we do not claim that at all times and under all circumstances it will work equally well, but we do claim that with reasonable patience and judgment it will satisfy your greatest expectations.” Thus read advertisements for the Ouija talking board.
It is claimed that its history goes back as far as 540 B.C.E, and that the Greek philosopher Pythagoras used it. On the other hand, the Knoxville News-Sentinel once quoted Canadian author Allen Spraggett as saying in his book Probing the Unexplained: “Anyone who has sat around that infernal instrument of divination, the Ouija board, knows what a dud the ritual usually turns out to be.”
The Ouija talking board usually is about two feet long and one and a half feet wide and one-fourth inch thick. Variously arranged on it are the words “Yes,” “No,” “Ouija,” “Mystifying Oracle” and “Good Bye.” Also on it appear the letters of the alphabet in two parallel arcs and the numerals from 1 to 0 in a straight line. Included is a heart-shaped little board resting on three pegs, toward the point of which is a circular glass.
Inasmuch as the Ouija board is manufactured by makers of games, and sold in the toy and game sections of department stores, one might well conclude that it is simply an innocent game. But not so! Thus not long ago a London medium who runs a center for healing and meditation asked the Southeast London and Kentish Mercury to publish a warning against the use of the Ouija board. He said that in just a few months he had received scores of calls for help by distressed parents or by young persons because of the way they had been affected from playing with the Ouija talking board. He appealed: “Please leave them alone, they can cause irreparable brain damage. . . . If only people would realise how dangerous it is to dabble in this.” He also stated that playing with the Ouija board can cause a deep and worsening depression and can open the way to “evil spirit entities.” He told of persons being troubled by spirits that claim to be people who once lived; that one girl was plagued by a spirit who claimed she was that of a young girl who recently committed suicide.
In the United States both spiritualists and astrologers have spoken out against toying with the Ouija board. They call it “harmful and fraudulent,” causing people to become emotionally upset even to the point of becoming insane. According to one of these, the Ouija board is “the first step into the demon world—and don’t think demons do not exist.”—The Oregon Journal, December 12, 1968.
Underscoring the aspect of fraud is the report that appeared in the New York Times, March 3, 1970: “A $59,285 Request by a Ouija Board Ruled Fraud Here.” The article went on to tell how an heiress had been led by a supposed friend to believe that her Ouija board had instructed her to give that amount to a certain “good angel.” The jury took forty minutes to bring in the guilty verdict; the judge said that it should have taken only three minutes!
On rare occasions the answers that the Ouija board gives seem to lend credence to the claim that spirits of dead persons are indeed communicating with the living by means of it. But how could that be in view of the plain teaching of the Bible, the Word of God, regarding the dead. It says: “The living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all.”—Eccl. 9:5, 10; Ps. 146:4.
Since the dead cease to exist, who are the spirits that impersonate dead ones, and at times amaze people with their knowledge of certain facts? They are invisible wicked spirits who originally were created as good spirits or angels, even as was Satan the Devil. In the days before the Deluge these left their heavenly estate in order to enjoy the pleasures of sex, as the Bible tells us at Genesis 6:2: “The sons of the true God began to notice the daughters of men, that they were good-looking; and they went taking wives for themselves, namely, all whom they chose.” That these were not human sons of God is clear from the reference to them by the disciple Jude: “The angels that did not keep their original position but forsook their own proper dwelling place [God] has reserved with eternal bonds under dense darkness for the judgment of the great day.”—Jude 6.
Concerning them, the apostle Peter wrote in a similar vein: “Certainly . . . God did not hold back from punishing the angels that sinned, but, by throwing them into Tartarus, delivered them to pits of dense darkness to be reserved for judgment; . . . but kept Noah, a preacher of righteousness, safe with seven others when he brought a deluge upon a world of ungodly people.” Yes, these angels had materialized to enjoy the pleasures of sex. When the Flood came they had to dematerialize, and while they might have wanted to go back to their former positions in heaven, they had forfeited that privilege by their sensuous, selfish course of action and so God did not permit them to do so but restrained them in the spirit realm in a state of mental darkness.— 2 Pet. 2:4, 5.
The Israelites were repeatedly warned not to have anything to do with demons or with those who claimed to get in touch with the dead. (Deut. 18:10-12; Isa. 8:19, 20) Jesus and his apostles recognized who these spirits were that took possession of people, and they were able to order them to release their victims.—Matt. 8:28-34; Acts 16:16-18.
In view of these facts, what is the wise, safe course to pursue? That of not having anything to do with any “Mystifying Oracle” nor with any spirit mediums, and that for more than one good reason:
To begin with, all these wicked spirits are frauds, for they pose as the spirits of humans who have died, which they are not. That of itself should keep us from wanting to have anything to do with them. More than that, by playing with the Ouija board one is opening oneself to, yes, inviting the influence of the demons and risking coming under their control. We have seen how disastrous this can be.
And, most importantly, the Bible plainly forbids Christians to have anything to do with demons: “I do not want you to become sharers with the demons. You cannot be drinking the cup of Jehovah and the cup of demons; you cannot be partaking of ‘the table of Jehovah’ and the table of demons. Or ‘are we inciting Jehovah to jealousy’? We are not stronger than he is, are we?” We cannot consort with God’s enemies without becoming his enemy!—1 Cor. 10:20-22.
So is the Ouija talking board harmless entertainment? Those enlightened by the Bible answer, “By no means!”2