There are a vast number of ways to speak to Source. I call them “languages of the Divine.” Pick a language and Source will gladly chat you up in the way that feels most comfortable to you. Some people find one language and they stick with it. Consider the spiritual form of their “native tongue.” However, other people like to have several ways to get Divine information. One of those ways is by using a pendulum – or as I like to call it, the “oracle in your pocket!”
Dowsing is most often thought of as using two metal rods to seek out water, minerals, and lost items. Pendulums are a version of dowsing that is more often used for getting information or divinatory messages from the Divine via your subconscious. They are incredibly easy to use, and almost anything can act as one. You can place a paper clip on the end of a string, or use a wedding band tied to a piece of ribbon, and voilà—you have a pendulum! Store-bought and artisan-created pendulums come in many varieties made of metal, stone, wood, and crystals. Personally, I prefer the crystal types not only because they are so attractive but also because of the manifesting and healing properties that crystals bring to the table.
Some pendulumists (try saying that three times fast!) have many different pendulums, saving certain ones for specific purposes. For example, they might have one for decision-making, one for finding lost items, and a completely different one for spiritual or divinatory insights.
Pendulums go way, way back in the history of humankind. There’s evidence of the use of pendulums in ancient China, the reign of the pharoahs of Egypt, and the ancient Roman Empire. Their use also moves across many different cultures, including Greek, Hindu, Hebrew, and many more. Curiously, many of the most famous proponents of dowsing were Roman Catholic priests, abbots, and bishops. Stories of leaders of the Roman Catholic Church researching and using dowsing go back as far as the 17th century.
There are endless theories and speculations about how pendulums work. It’s my perspective that pendulums are touching the sub-conscious within all of us—which, in turn, is connected to the Divine. Pendulums draw their answers by going directly through the subconscious, whereas other oracles are more of a mix between a direct path to messages from the Universe and the subconscious. I don’t see this route as being better or worse than the other oracles, but it does provide an opportunity for self-understanding that can be very interesting and useful. Working with a pendulum just feels different than working with other oracles.
Are people who use pendulums making the pendulum move via tiny, almost imperceptible muscle movements? The vast majority of experts on the subject would tell you the answer to that question is a resounding yes. Does that negate the validity or the Divine nature of the information being provided? I would tell you absolutely not!
When we shuffle tarot cards or place our hand into a pouch of runes, we’re allowing for the Divine to guide our hands to bring forth the messages or answers we seek. The same is true of working with a pendulum. Our subconscious knows the answer to the questions we ask when it ever so slightly moves the hand that holds the pendulum. The fact that our bodies are moving the pendulum is irrelevant if we have faith that God is always within us and always wants to provide us with the answers we seek.
To begin working with pendulums, you’ll need to start by figuring out the options of “yes,” “no,” “I don’t know,” and “answer not available.” You can discover or program your pendulum for these answers. My preference is to just ask the pendulum.
The first step is to hold your pendulum in one hand, completely still. Use your other hand to cease its movement if you need to. Then ask your pendulum, “Show me yes,” and watch to see what movement it makes.
The most common movements are:
- a straight line moving back and forth, left to right
- a straight line moving away from your body then back to your body
- a circle moving clockwise
- a circle moving counterclockwise
- not moving at all
Take your time.
The pendulum might move immediately or it might take a few minutes—or even a few tries. Any movement might seem very slow or slight at first, but it’ll become more significant as you wait. Once you’ve established what yes looks like for your pendulum, bring it to a complete stop again. Now ask, “Show me no.” Usually no is the opposite movement from yes—for example, a clockwise circle rather than a counterclockwise circle. But nothing is outside possibility. If yes is a straight line left to right for you but no is a clockwise circle, just go with it. Follow the same method to find out your pendulum’s movements for “I don’t know” and “answer not available.” Sometimes the pendulum will have its own ideas for these answers. For me, “yes” is the pendulum swinging in a straight line from left to right, “no” is the pendulum swinging in a straight line away from and then back to my body, “I don’t know” is a counter-clockwise circle, and “answer not available” is the pendulum simply refusing to move at all.
An alternative method to asking the pendulum is telling it what its movements should be. I think it’s a more natural method to let the pendulum tell you, but if you’ve strong feelings about this, go ahead and program it. If you want yes to be a clockwise motion, then say to your pendulum, “This is yes,” and move it in a clockwise circle. If no is counterclockwise, then make the movement while telling the pendulum, “This is no.”
Yes and no as answers are pretty self-explanatory. But let’s talk about “I don’t know” and “answer not available.”
Why would an oracle tell you “I don’t know”? In my experience, that usually reflects a poorly worded question. For example, if you ask the pendulum if you should move to Chicago or Los Angeles, your pendulum won’t be able to answer that because it’s not a “yes or no” question; it’s an “or” question.
Pendulum work is about breaking things down into small, specific pieces. Frankly, I find the Universe as a whole to be a very literal place that requires very specific questions to get accurate answers.
Going back to our example, you should first ask the pendulum, “Should I move to Chicago?” After getting your answer, then ask it, “Should I move to Los Angeles?” If both places are of interest to you, then be sure to ask about both cities, even if the answer to the first city you mentioned is yes. It’s totally possible that both cities will have an answer of yes, indicating that either city would make you happy.
Pay attention to how enthusiastically the pendulum swings or moves for each city. The more dramatic the answer, the happier you’re likely to be in that city. If the movements are the same, then it’s probably time to ask more questions. You can ask things like “Would I be financially successful in Chicago?” or “Would I find true love in Los Angeles?”
Poorly worded questions can also get you inaccurate answers with a pendulum. This is usually because you didn’t really think the question through thoroughly. Let’s go back to our moving question. Let’s pretend you’ve got Atlanta on your mind, and you’re really thinking about moving. You ask the pendulum, “Should I move?” It says yes, so you pack your bags and move to Atlanta, but it’s not at all what you’d hoped for. What went wrong?
Consider that you asked a very broad question with “Should I move?” Your pendulum said yes because you really need to move to a house with a more positive energy—but in the same city you’re living in. Should you move? Yes! To Atlanta? Well, you didn’t ask that, did you?
Now, why would you get “answer not available”? I’ve actually experienced this answer with angel work and tarot cards sometimes. Source knows the path to your happiness far better than you do. Sometimes having a particular piece of information before you’re ready for it could really trip you up. It’s tempting to be alarmed by this answer, but you shouldn’t be. You should just trust that the answers you seek will be revealed in perfect timing.
One of the most common uses for your pendulum is to locate lost items. You can ask a series of questions that lead you to what you’re trying to locate. In this example, you might start with “Are my car keys in the house?” (Remember to be specific about what keys you’re looking for if you own more than one set.) If you get a yes, then you can go room by room asking the pendulum, “Are the car keys in this room?” Or you can just sit somewhere and ask, “Are the car keys in the kitchen?” Once you’ve narrowed it down to a particular room, you can then ask the pendulum, “Are the car keys near the east wall?”
You can also use a pendulum to manifest things in your life that you desire. Most of them work via the Law of Attraction by using the pendulum’s natural connection with the subconscious to bring it into alignment with your conscious desires. When the conscious and the subconscious are in agreement in a positive way about what you want to create in your life, magic can happen pretty quickly!
One way to manifest with the pendulum is to focus on whatever it is you want to bring into (or remove from) your life. Begin with the normal preparation work for your pendulum. Think about what it is that you’re wanting to bring into your life, and then ask the pendulum whether you’re currently in an energetic space to make that happen. The pendulum will let you know if you are. If it says yes, then let the pendulum swing in the yes motion while you think joyfully and optimistically about what you want to create. If it says no, then start asking your pendulum what sort of changes you need to make in order to bring about the desired outcome.
Your pendulum can help you clear out any negative energy patterns while at the same time bringing in new things that you want to manifest. Feng Shui practitioners sometimes use this method.
To clear out negative energy, after your regular prep work, take your pendulum and start to twirl in a circle it in the counterclockwise direction. While you’re doing that, say to yourself, I now remove all negative energy from my life. All unhealthy or undesired connections with other people are cleared away. My negative thinking is erased. All harmful energetic attachments to others are removed. While you’ll have started the pendulum’s movement in the counterclockwise direction, as you say these things, the pendulum will take over. You’ll no longer be moving it; you’ll just let it spin until it’s done.
Depending on how much energy there is to clear, your pendulum might swing pretty wildly, but it’ll eventually stop. You’ll probably feel lighter, happier, and filled with more energy after this exercise. But consider this: the work you’ve done has now cleared out a lot of energy that was taking up space in the magical, manifesting machine that lives within you. So now it’s time to fill up that space! Otherwise, it’ll be easy for negative energy to just rush back in.
Start your pendulum spinning in a circle in a clockwise direction. While it spins, start telling the pendulum what you want to manifest. For example, this might be “I am healthy and strong in all ways, and I am full of energy and motivation to complete all the things I desire to accomplish.” Or perhaps you might say, “I am deserving of love. Romance that is supportive and kind finds its way easily into my life.” Whatever you’re wanting to manifest, make it an affirmation.
The pendulum will once again take over the movement. When it comes to a stop, you’ll know that you’ve filled your magical, manifesting machine all the way up! The more you do this routine, the more quickly things will manifest in your life.
Of all the oracles out there, pendulums might be the easiest to use, especially for quick and impromptu answers. You can easily carry one with you everywhere you go, and so long as you can find a private space (or at least don’t mind if you get weird looks from others), you can just pull it out and get super fast yes or no answers. It can help you make decisions—though it might require a lot of yes or no questions to get there—and help you find lost items. And while I still primarily work with angels and tarot as my “native tongue,” I consider the pendulum to be a great addition to my oracle toolbox.
And of course, I love that it fits in my pocket!