Automatic writing is not new; it has been practiced for many centuries, perhaps even longer. Although it is most often used to communicate with the spirit world, it is also a method by which an individual can contact the “inner self” in order to awaken repressed memories, stimulate dormant forces of creativity, or just learn more about the subconscious mind.
The procedure will be familiar to anyone who has ever used a Ouija board or our popular talking boards, the Psychic Circle, the Pathfinder, and the Enchanted Spellboard, since the psychic or sitter using this method is familiar with a situation where a special planchette is also used.
There are, and always will be, those who question whether or not we can actually make contact with the spirit world. Since it first became popular, there have been many critics and out-and-out debunkers who claim it is not possible and is merely a trick designed to fool the naive and the gullible. However, the overwhelming evidence says otherwise. For decades, psychics, seers, mediums and psychic researchers have shown that they have been able to contact the other side and produce messages from people who have “passed over.”
Automatic writing, or spirit writing, first became popular during the rise of the Spiritualist movement during the second half of the nineteenth century. During that time, a handmade planchette designed to hold a pencil was often created by mediums and mystics who practiced the art of automatic writing. Most often the medium, or “sensitive,” would touch the sides of the device in order to provide “psychic force.” The spirits themselves would then begin to write a message.
The practice of spirit writing grew in popularity during the early period of the twentieth century, especially the years directly following World War I (or “the Great War,” as it was known then). This is easy enough to understand, since both the war and the influenza pandemic that followed close on its heels resulted in an almost unprecedented death toll. With so many people left behind to grieve the loss of their loved ones, it naturally followed that there would be a desire, even a demand, for mediums to contact the beyond in order to bridge the gulf between the living and the dead, thus providing messages from the spirit world.