The most commonly used and the simplest type of dowsing equipment is the pendulum. This is any small weighted object suspended by a thread which, through its gyrations, can show energy fields. On a different level, the pendulum can be used as an indication of answers to simple questions put to the diviner's own unconscious. A pendulum can be made from a strand of long hair tied to a gold ring, or a semi-precious stone strung on thread or ordinary fine chain.

One of the simplest uses a pendulum can be put to is in finding to which foods and chemicals a person may be allergic. With a little practice this comes quite naturally to most people and can be extremely accurate. The answers a pendulum can give are basically 'yes,' 'no', and 'neutral'.

To find a 'yes' for example, hold the thread approximately 10 cms above the pendulum. With practice you will find the best length to use, which you should then mark with a knot. First, it is necessary to find how the pendulum indicates the responses (in a sense the swing responses have to be 'programmed'). Let the pendulum swing gently to and from your body. As it swings, concentrate on the thoughts 'yes', 'positive', 'benevolent' and the pendulum normally begins to circle in a clockwise direction. Once you have accomplished this successfully a few times, try again as before, with the pendulum swinging towards you and away from you in the starting position and concentrate on 'no', 'negative', 'unhealthy'. The pendulum usually now swings in an anti-clockwise rotational movement. These two basic gyrations are your own personal 'yes’ and ‘no’. In some people these may be reversed; 'yes' may be anti-clockwise and 'no' clockwise, or for some people there may be a totally different regime. You might find your own personal 'yes' or 'no' requires a particular feeling and in others the basic 'yes' and 'no' can change at any time for an unknown reason. This is simply overcome by asking the pendulum for the direction of rotation for either 'yes' and 'no' prior to asking any other questions, or if at any time you use a different pendulum.

Now hold the pendulum above a food sample and ask yourself if it is beneficial to me to eat or not. The pendulum should give an accurate answer, with practice. Question such as "Is this egg/milk/cheese/margarine fresh?" "Are these apples/pears/oranges good to eat?" It is also possible to find the vitality left in any produce after it has been picked or been in the freezer for a time. Ask the pendulum to give a countdown out of, perhaps 20 when you hold it above the specimen. Start it swinging clockwise and start counting. The bob should swing rapidly at first, then gradually decrease as you count, until the level of vitality has been reached, when it will oscillate backwards and forwards. That is the value of the energy remaining in the product. The figure of 20 is arbitrary and can be any convenient number. With practice you will learn what frame of mind allows more objective answers to your questions. A certain detachment is essential, while any desires, will or preferences will bring a subjective response.

It is possibly the dowser's intuition, working through the neuro-muscular area of the brain, the cerebellum, which may produce the driving force behind dowsing. The cerebellum controls the reflexes of the body, in this case the forearms and wrists, and gives tiny, almost unnoticeable involuntary reactions which are amplified by the rods or any other type of dowsing instrument to give a noticeable reaction.


Many people associate dowsing with the 'V shaped hazel twig. In fact, there are over two hundred different types of dowsing instruments, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. For detecting earth energies, in my opinion the best dowsing implements are angle rods, two lengths of metal road, about 14 to 16 ins (35 to 40 cms) long, with 5 inches (13 cms) bent over at right angles to form a handle. A little experience will show the length which will best suit the individual. Made from heavy metal coat hangers, they are extremely sensitive, even in the hands of a complete beginner.

Some people find it an advantage to use handles of some description, others prefer to feel the bare rods turning in their hands. For handles, ball point pen cases are perfectly good, or 1 inch (2.5 cms) diameter dowelling rod or broom handle, bored down its length to take the short end of the instrument or even several cotton reels glued together.

In all cases it is essential that the rods move freely in their holders. Don't be misled by the simplicity of this instrument or any other dowsing implements. The amount of information that a person can obtain with their help is quite phenomenal.

In order to work, angle rods (like any other dowsing tools) need to be in a state of balance. Try holding the rods perfectly level in front of you, in a comfortable position, just above waist height, pointing them away from your body. Now gently raise the tips, so that the rods are slightly above the horizontal and you will quickly find that they go out of control and swing back towards you. They are at their most sensitive position when the rod tips are just a few degrees below the horizontal.

With a dowsing rod it is easy to find the subterranean water veins under a standing stone or plain. Hold a small bottle of water in your free hand, with the top removed, the water trickling over your palm to tune your mind into the fact that you are looking for underground water and underground water only. Angle rod will show you exact place of water.

Slowly walk across the face of the stone, and at the edge, the divining rod should gradually turn either away from, or towards the stone, depending upon the direction the water is flowing. If the rod turns away from the stone, follow it carefully, noting the sinuous, snake-like nature of the energy wave. If the rod turns toward the stone, you can follow it through the opposite corner and on its way. The course it will take will be typical of the meandering nature of an underground stream, quite different from the regimented waves of the 'overgrounds'.