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"Dowse \Dowse\, v. i.   To use the dipping or divining rod, as in search of water, ore, etc.  

Source: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

“Dowsing (Water Witching, Divining, Questing, Doodlebugging ... ) is the ancient art of finding water, minerals and other objects that seem to have a natural magnetic, electromagnetic or other perhaps unknown energy.

Source “Letter to Robin” by Walt Woods

"The dowsing rod is a simple instrument which shows the reaction of the human nervous system to certain factors which are unknown to us at this time." -Albert Einstein

"Dowsing is using a tool (usually a pendulum or rods) that allows us to gather information not directly available to our conscious mind. Because we are living in a physical world, we must, by necessity concentrate on certain data, to the exclusion of other data. As well as information coming externally we also have information coming to us internally ( from our Inner Self or Higher Self, God, Spirit Guides, etc. depending on your belief system) through what we usually term our Intuition."

Source: Diane Marcotte 

2002 board member of the Canadian Society of Dowsers.

"Dowsing is definitely an intuitive art and one of the oldest forms of divination in the world. Perhaps the oldest and most familiar image we have a dowser is what is called a field or map dowser. This person walks over a landscape using a Y shaped or forked stick (sometimes called a doodlebug) to locate subterranean sources of water, oil or even precious minerals. The stick vibrates, crosses or shakes when the substance is found. Some dowsers will use two sticks held in one hand, and when the sticks cross, it signifies that a subtle astral or geopathic force has located the natural resource. This kind of dowsing is also used to locate things such as buried treasure, lost persons, missing jewelry and stray golf balls!"

"It's about small, involuntary motions of the dowsers hands being magnified by the mechanism and the dowser reading whatever he wants to read into it." - Justinian

"It is the ancient art of seeking information or unseen objects through the use of non-ordinary perception. In practice it is a process of obtaining yes/no answers (or numerical answers) to properly worded questions with the use of a dowsing instrument and the proper frame of mind. Sometimes called divination, perhaps because the source of the answers seems to be from higher consciousness or universal mind." - Stephen Johnson

"Pseudo-science designed to separate you from your money." - frogan

"Dowsing is a term commonly used to denote the practice of locating underground water with a forked stick; however, in practice its use is really not so restricted. Dowsing is also used to determine answers to other questions such as the sex of an unborn child, and the location of pipes, or for foretelling the future. Numerous exotic instruments have been used by dowsers including scissors, pliers, crowbars, and even German sausages. Probably the three most common instruments are the forked stick or Y-rod, the pendulum, and the L-rod, usually made of a piece of wire or rod bent in the shape of the letter ‘L’ The terms water witching, rhabdomancy, radiesthesia, and water divining have also been used as synonyms for dowsing. " - George P. Hansen

"...dowsing is neither a scientific technique nor a natural human ability. It is a spiritistic power used by dowsers who only think they are using a natural or divine gift. Unfortunately, they are really practicing a forbidden art."

"Dowsing: Divine Gift, Human Ability, Or Occult Power?" (an article from the Christian Research Journal, Spring 1992, page 8) by John Weldon.

"Dowsing is one of the many devices of Satan which will drag the fool saint who uses right to the very feet of Satan."

"A form of divination using a forked rod or bent wire o ften used to find objects, people, or things.  A person holds the dowsing instrument and is "lead" around by it until the object is, allegedly, found."

"Dowsing is bogus. Belief in dowsing is dangerous." - fishbob

"Dowsing to me is a load of old croc !" - Neily

" Dowsing is a normal sensory perception available to birds, fish, animals and man. Salmon use it to find their way back to their birthplace to spawn. The swallows use it to go south or north to return to the Mission Capistrono every year. Bees find their way back to the hive after flying from flower to flower over a distance of 2 miles or more. The monarch butterfly returns to the same tree in Santa Cruz, California from South America, three generations later. Thousands of lost cats and dogs have crossed the country to reunite with their owners."

"What makes the rods move? The dowser does. There's no magic in this process. The key to the movement is that the dowser achieve a state of mind in which muscle control is transferred to the subconscious mind rather than the conscious mind. It is most easily achieved when the dowser does not care whether the answer is a yes or a no. This state of mind has been called high indifference or getting out of ego. This is why dowsing is more accurate and reliable when the dowser is serving others rather than dowsing a personal question."