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  • Writer's pictureMonique Rickard

The Basics of Dowsing with Crystal Pendulums and Witching Rods.

Updated: Oct 27

Learn how to pick your dowsing instrument, channel energy, and find what you are looking for.

Build your Divination Skills

Dowsing is the use of an instrument to gain information from an unseen source. It is a psychic form of telekinesis where the rational mind works with the intuitive 'mind' to move a pendulum or rod toward an object or desired answer. The pendulum is a tool to access your divine higher power; a way to tap into your subconscious- also called the innermost


As a human race, we have been dowsing for a very long time. Depicted on a wall in Tassilin-Ajjer Mountains, Algeria is a cave drawing from around 6000 of a man holding a forked stick searching for a subterranean pool. [1]

Dowsing is an ancient art of survival and has been passed down through the centuries to those seeking answers.

Practitioners can detect the auric field of underground water or metal through their innate sixth sense. They can clear the emotional residue between divine guidance and themselves to receive a response utilizing witching rods and pendulums.

You may be wondering where the information is being transmitted from? As I understand it, your conscious mind attempts to connect the subconscious or intuitive aspect of yourself. -And as we are multidimensional beings, our intuition has access to a greater, collective wealth of knowledge that may be called the high self, your higher power, or your divinity.

For this practice to work, you must allow your awareness to merge with the collective awareness that exists beyond scientific knowledge. Your success is not incumbent on what you believe. To dowse, you only need to be open to the response.

Pendulum Dowsing and Witching Rods

Why Dowse?

The reasons for dowsing are endless. Witching rods and pendulums are used to locate underground resources such as water, precious gems, oil, and gold. Dowsing can be performed to locate above-ground objects, such as healing herbs, lost items- like car keys, and even missing persons. Pendulums may be spoken to directly to obtain guidance from a higher state of consciousness. For example, by asking yes and no questions, you can consult your pendulum about career choices or a love match.

Where Do I Start?

First, you will need to pick your instrument. If your interest is in locating a physical object or substance, witching (dowsing) rods or pendulums can be used interchangeably. However, if your concern is finding answers regarding lifestyle changes or prophetic events, a pendulum is better suited to fulfill that need.

A dowsing rod can be any forked rod that will dip downward when held over the intended target. The user holds both ends of the rods with slight tension, palms upward, and then carefully cover the terrain, alert to any downward movement of the rod. Or, two L-shaped rods can be used (usually made of copper) held in each hand, which will cross into an X to indicate the location of the desired element. [2]

A conventional pendulum is a crystal or stone suspended from a chain or cord. The top of the cord should be held by your thumb, index finger, and middle finger, while the stone is free to swing and/or rotate when called upon. You may use any weighted object suspended from a cord or chain, as the appearance or nature of the pendulum has little to do with the information being channeled through it.

Pendulum Dowsing

Pendulums constructed from found objects are free and hold personal value if made with care and loving intention. Keep in mind, you do not want to craft a pendulum with a length greater than 12 inches. Some commonly "found" pendulum examples include:

Car or house keys clipped to a lanyard.

  • Freshly chewed sticks of gum tied to a line of dental floss.

  • Fishing line threaded through a steel-weighted fish lure.

  • A length of twine wrapped around a sentimental childhood trinket.

  • A round pin cushion tied to a length of sewing thread or yarn.

  • A necklace chain connected to a heavy gold ring or an empty locket. (Do not include photos of people or animals.)

Your options for crafting a pendulum are only limited by your breadth of imagination. Another option is to purchase your Pendulum from a gem retailer or psychic/metaphysical shop. A cost-effective purchase might include a clear quartz crystal suspended from a simple chain. If you are willing to spend a bit more, you can purchase chains decorated with glass beads and/or precious stones. Depending on your personal preference, you may choose a stone (as an anchor) according to its inherent properties. Some people have multiple pendulums for this reason. For example, a rose quartz pendulum assists with relationships, a tiger's eye pendulum for mental clarity, and an amethyst pendulum for spiritual vision.

Charging your Pendulum

Clearing and recharging energy is recommended if you use a crystal or stone pendulum. My method is simple:

1. Fill a small glass bowl with clean water and sprinkle in a pinch of rock salt.

2. Place the stone or crystal in the water. (Some stones are not meant to be submerged in water. Check with your gemstone dealer if you have a unique stone.)

3. With the pointer (also referred to as the index) finger of your dominant hand, stir the salt in the water counterclockwise to remove negativity and impurities. (DO NOT leave your crystal or chain overnight in saltwater.)

4. Remove your stone from the water, and ask your pendulum to circle clockwise to restore positive energy.

How Do I Dowse?

Dowsing is essentially allowing your instrument to transmit a direct answer to you. With rods or the pendulum, you must voice your intentions aloud. For example: "I am searching for water." Focus on the intended meaning of your words. If you want to dig a well, then you and your instrument are not concerned with dewdrops on the grass. Do not confuse the matter with unnecessary details.

Next, be receptive to movement. Trust the response. The forked rod will pull downward over the lost object, and the dowsing rods will cross- as if by magic at the exact moment and location where your attention needs to be.

With pendulum dowsing, detailed communication is required. Ask your pendulum to show you what "Yes" looks like. It will either begin to swing back and forth (toward and away from you) as if nodding its head. Or it may turn in a clockwise circle. Give gratitude for the response by saying "Thank you" and allow the pendulum to return to center. Then ask for a "No" response. It may swing left to right as if shaking its head, no. Or, it may spin in a counter-clockwise rotation.

Once you've established yes and no responses, you may now begin to ask yes and no questions. You may also suspend your pendulum over a map asking questions or walking with it during fieldwork, focusing on the outlined response system.

What if My Pendulum or Rods Don't Move?

Think of your whole body as a vessel for retrieving information. There may be a blockage due to bias, fear, or another entity. It may be mandatory for you to unclog the transmission by removing unhelpful thought forms or negative spirits that attempt to interfere. More often than not, our subconscious thoughts prevent the movement of our dowsing instrument. In this case, you need to permit yourself to receive answers. State aloud, "I realize this is new, but I give permission to collect and deliver higher information to me now."

If that doesn't work, other forces may be preventing you from receiving the information. We are not alone in the universe. Vocalize your intention by stating, "I remove any and all permission that I have given, knowingly or unknowingly, to entities or passed over loved ones that do not hold in regard my highest good."

Your voice has power. Your words cast spells. When you learned to read and write, you were spelling. Those bad four-letter words are called curse words. Use the power of your words and their intended meaning to help you dowse with clarity and accuracy.

Further reading to consider: Why You Unintentionally Deflect Spiritual Help



1. Eason, Cassandra. The Art of the Pendulum, Weiser Books LLC. 2005 PG. 12

2. The Association of Independent Readers & Rootworkers, Dowsing, Doodle bugging, and Water Witching. October 6, 2020

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