I received an interesting email asking me about Ouija boards and "how they work". I don't know why I got that email or question as it is not my "line of work". However, as with any questions I receive, I try to be helpful. Therefore, in honor of my favorite holiday... Halloween... this is what I replied, in part, in case any of you are curious...
I found this online and figured it was a great reply...
"Ideomotor phenomenon" is a psychological phenomenon wherein a subject makes motions unconsciously.
The ideomotor response (or "ideomotor reflex"), often abbreviated to IMR, is a concept in hypnosis and psychological research. It is derived from the terms "ideo" (idea, or mental representation) and "motor" (muscular action). The phrase is most commonly used in reference to the process whereby a thought or mental image brings about a seemingly "reflexive" or automatic muscular reaction, often of minuscule degree, and potentially outside of the awareness of the subject. As in reflexive responses to pain, the body sometimes reacts reflexively with an ideomotor effect to ideas alone without the person consciously deciding to take action.
Mystics have often attributed these effects to paranormal or supernatural force. Many subjects are unconvinced that their actions are originating solely from within themselves. The associated term "ideo-dynamic response" (or "reflex") applies to a wider domain, and extends to the description of all bodily reactions (including, but not limited to ideo-motor and ideo-sensory responses) caused in a similar manner by certain ideas, e.g., the salivation often caused by imagining sucking a lemon, which is a secretory response. The notion of an ideo-dynamic response contributed to James Braid's first neuro-psychological explanation of the principle through which suggestion operated in hypnotism."
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