Re: Miracles?

Bill Payne (
Thu, 19 Mar 1998 23:05:49 -0600

Thu, 19 Mar 1998 11:01:52 -0500, Vandergraaf, Chuck wrote:

> You ascribe a "positive feedback" (my words) to demonic activity. Let's
> step back a bit. Would Satan pick only on people who are looking for
> water? Sure, water is a precious commodity, something we can't do
> without but it is also an economic resource. Are there techniques
> similar to dowsing that can be used to locate ore bodies?

If you will go to the AltaVista page:
and search for "dowsing" you'll learn more than you ever wanted to know
about dowsing. Claims are made that dowsing will locate caves, buried
treasure, sunken ships, underground lines of all types, etc. I
remember reading on a site called "Barringer" I think, that a pendulum
could be suspended over a topo map and the pendulum would begin to swing
when it passed over the spot on the map where the treasure, water, or
whatever you're looking for is on/under the ground.
> So, before we set out on an experiment (in which I'd love to
> participate!), maybe we should first find answers to the following
> questions (among other)
> * are dowsing techniques only applicable to water


> * must the water be running or can it be stagnant water

Doesn't matter.

> * does the TDS (total dissolved solids) concentration in the water
> have any effect (saline water compared to potable water)

I doubt it.

> * does it work underground, e.g. in mines

I don't know, but it probably would.

> * is dowsing an acquired skill

I think it's more of an art. IMO, there is no skill involved.

> * does it work better in humid conditions

I doubt it.

> * does having a naturally dry skin make it easier or more
> difficult to sense any "force"

I doubt it.
> and, of course, most importantly,
> * how many false positive and false negative readings are
> obtained?

I've seen one false positive when an engineer was dowsing for a 2-inch
PVC monitoring well, using brass rods. He missed the well by 5 or 6
feet, as I recall. We knew the general area of the well, but not the
exact location. We found it by back-dragging the graveled area with an
end loader.

I've also seen a driller find a buried electric line next to a sidewalk
in an area of downtown Birmingham, AL. I had cleared utilities by
calling the Alabama Line Locators, but this was a private line installed
by the University of Alabama at Birmingham for outside lighting. I had
staked a boring right over the underground line. The driller dowsed the
area on his own initiative; he didn't trust me.

The most impressive demonstration of dowsing occurred when I was about
10 (~40 years ago). A playmate of mine and I were playing out behind
the apartments where we lived. A tall, raw-boned old man with thick
horn-rimmed glasses was visiting in the neighborhood and came out to see
us. He said, "Money will find money." My friend and I asked what he
meant. He cut a limber three-foot branch off a tree. He took the
branch, which was maybe 1/4-inch thick at the thicker end, and cut a
slit in the thinner end. He took a dollar bill from his wallet, folded
it in half from left to right twice, and stuck it into the slit in the
stick. He then took a gold pocket watch out, handed it to us and said,
"Hide the watch out here and I'll find it." We were standing in the
middle of a flat, grassed area about 40 x 80 feet. It must have been
the fall or winter of the year because I remember the grass was ankle
high and dead leaves were on the grass. We hid the watch under grass
and leaves, making sure that it could not be seen, while the old man
stood off to one side looking the other way.

After walking around for a couple of minutes, we said, "OK, come find
your watch." The old man turned around and put the stick in his right
hand and held his thumbnail tightly against the stick, and held his
right hand in his left hand. The stick, with the dollar bill in the
end, was pointing forward and up at about a 45-degree angle. As he
began to walk over the area, I noticed the end of the stick begin to
quiver and pull off to one side, towards where we had hidden the watch,
when he was within maybe 5 or 10 feet of the watch. He circled and
spiraled in to the watch, following the pull of the branch. When he
closed in over the watch, the end of the branch was pointing straight
down at the watch and shaking like a fishing pole with a 3-pound bass
fighting to escape. I remember thinking, "he's making it do that with
his thumb," but then I noticed, and remarked to my friend, that the
branch was straight for the first 2 feet, and bent in the last foot! It
was quivering and pointing straight down at the watch, although he still
couldn't see it. He then reached out with his foot and, as he raked the
grass and leaves back with his foot, said, "There's my watch, boys." We
were astonished.

There will always be those who will say this effect has a naturalistic
explanation. Just as when "a voice came from heaven, 'I have glorified
it, and will glorify it again.' The crowd that was there and heard it
said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him." (John

God bless,