User Tag List

123 Last

Results 1 to 10 of 80

  1. #1
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INFP
    Posts
    3,698

    Default What's the deal with Water Divining?

    Firstly, this is a serious post. I realize that some sentences could be construed as masturbation jokes, but that's just a happy coincidence.

    My dad can water-divine, which is the practice of locating underground water using some object (traditionally a fork-shaped branch). He learned it growing up as a farmer. Apparently it's really common among Australian farmers. Australia is obviously a fairly dry country, so farmers here rely heavily on bore water for their livestock. If you're going to dig a deep hole, you obviously want some sort of assurance that there's water at the bottom of it. Water divining is the method whereby they locate underwater "streams" to tap into with their bores.

    Here's how it works: you hold your divining aid in front of you, horizontal from the ground usually, though that varies. Also variable is your divining aid. My dad uses a bit of fencing wire. Another friend uses a copper rod. Some use green wood. It changes from person to person. So you walk along with your divining aid (henceforth: rod) in front of you. Once you cross an underground stream, the end of your rod will turn in the direction the stream is flowing. This is not merely a twitch, but often such a strong pull that my dad tells me that it's impossible to hold the rod straight. Judging from the strength of the pull, experienced diviners can ascertain how far down the stream is, how fast the flow is, and even whether the stream is of salt or fresh water (very important in Australia with our salinity problems).

    Dad says that some people can do it and some people can't. If you can do it, you can get better at it. If you can't do it, you'll never be able to do it. His brother, for instance, could never do it. The rod wouldn't move at all. As soon as dad put his hand on his brother's body, however, the rod would "work". Moreover, expert users could divine other substances, notably gold and other minerals. Apparently (anecdotally) many of the old Australian prospectors used to use this method to find gold in the days before the invention of metal detectors.

    I'm sure I've lost many of you by now. Let me get weirder. The man who taught my dad to divine used to be so good at it that he could follow people. Western Australian police used to get him to help them track lost people.

    This probably sounds like the new age ravings of an INFP, but I'm convinced that it's real. I should point out that, unlike many American farmers, Aussie farmers aren't (as a group) at all religious or prone to any kind of mysticism. They generally can't explain how it works, but none of them (that I've met) attribute it to any kind of spiritual activity. The popular theory is some kind of magnetism, but they don't really care how it works as long as it works.

    So, my questions are:

    1) What the hell is up with this?
    2) Is this a practice you are familiar with?
    and
    3) Is this something that happens in your part of the world?

  2. #2
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    8,828

    Default

    What evidence do you have that it isn't staged, that it isn't a parlor trick or simple coincidence? I don't mean to be a critic, but just taking something like that on faith is more than I can handle.

    I've heard of it, but I don't really believe in it. Underground water can't make sticks move without touching them. That's just not possible.

    I generally avoid people who believe in this. It seems too much like some kind of cult thing, and there's no telling what else they might accept as reasonable if they do this.

    No offense, mind you. I'm just pointing out the other point of view.

  3. #3
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INFP
    Posts
    3,698

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    What evidence do you have that it isn't staged, that it isn't a parlor trick or simple coincidence? I don't mean to be a critic, but just taking something like that on faith is more than I can handle.

    I've heard of it, but I don't really believe in it. Underground water can't make sticks move without touching them. That's just not possible.

    I generally avoid people who believe in this. It seems too much like some kind of cult thing, and there's no telling what else they might accept as reasonable if they do this.

    No offense, mind you. I'm just pointing out the other point of view.
    No, it's a fair question. My source is primarily the first-hand, personal testimony of my dad the INTJ. He is not a fool, and is not at all spiritually inclined. He is not without a sense of humour, but his humour rarely tends in the direction of pulling your leg, and I can spot it a mile away when he does. He is definitely not joking on this subject.

    Also, many of the least humorous people I know can either do this or have seen it done. If it didn't work, Australian farmers would not do it. They don't get any government subsidies whatsoever, so they can't afford to indulge in flights-of-fancy. These are not credulous people. I know that the american view of farmers tends in the direction of uneducated, highly-religious yokels, but Australian farmers aren't like that.

    After a semi-traumatic childhood of frequently-exploited gullibility, I'm actually pretty good at reading people now. These guys aren't joking about it. Many farmers won't bore until they've gotten someone who can water-divine to scout out prospective locations. My dad recently marked out bore locations for a subdivision of about 40 lots that a friend of his was developing. He had a 100% success rate. On the neighbouring property of subdivisions, the professional borers bored for well over a week without any success at all.

  4. #4
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    8,828

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    My dad recently marked out bore locations for a subdivision of about 40 lots that a friend of his was developing. He had a 100% success rate. On the neighbouring property of subdivisions, the professional borers bored for well over a week without any success at all.
    Did you actually see this? Hmm, I've investigated, and it's thought that most people who have a good record with this simply rely on extremely subtle, nearly unconscious knowledge of what sort of places are likely to have water underground. What do you say? Seems especially plausible to me, given that after playing through more than one video game by the same designer(s), I get really good at guessing where treasure chests, exits, traps, monsters, and such are. Yet I can't explain how... it's like my unconscious understands a pattern that's too complex for me to convey. That seems common for Ni dominants, actually.

    I apologize, but I just can't accept this. For some reason, my mind is hostile to the very idea that something like this could be possible, but I can't explain why. Does that make sense? So it might be best if you find someone who's more open-minded than I am to investigate.

  5. #5
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    9w1
    Socionics
    INFj None
    Posts
    9,827

    Default

    I have no idea what's up with it, but I enjoyed reading your accounts of it and find it fascinating. IMO, there are still plenty of things in this world that we don't have a good explanation for, so it doesn't surprise me. Eventually they will probably find an explanation for it, maybe like the one athenian mentioned.

    I have heard of it and heard of it being done in the US, but I don't know of anyone who can do it and I've never seen it done.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  6. #6
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INFP
    Posts
    3,698

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    Did you actually see this? Hmm, I've investigated, and it's thought that most people who have a good record with this simply rely on extremely subtle, nearly unconscious knowledge of what sort of places are likely to have water underground. What do you say? Seems especially plausible to me, given that after playing through more than one video game by the same designer(s), I get really good at guessing where treasure chests, exits, traps, monsters, and such are. Yet I can't explain how... it's like my unconscious understands a pattern that's too complex for me to convey. That seems common for Ni dominants, actually.
    Yeah, I can understand how that would seem to be a very tempting explanation. But farmers would not use a stick if they could tell just by looking at the land. They would be proud of the fact that they could do it without a stick.

    Also, that would fail to explain the fact that my dad says he can't hold the stick straight when he's passing over a stream. It will twist in his hands.

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    I apologize, but I just can't accept this. For some reason, my mind is hostile to the very idea that something like this could be possible, but I can't explain why. Does that make sense? So it might be best if you find someone who's more open-minded than I am to investigate.
    Yeah, I can see how it would be an uncomfortable idea. I should point out again that my dad is very much an INTJ, and doesn't have a problem with it. He is very pragmatic, so if it works then it works. He doesn't feel inclined to argue with that.

    I'm going to try to persuade him to teach me (if I can do it). That way I will be able to speak from first-hand experience rather than 2nd hand.

  7. #7
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    8,828

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    Yeah, I can understand how that would seem to be a very tempting explanation. But farmers would not use a stick if they could tell just by looking at the land. They would be proud of the fact that they could do it without a stick.
    But what I'm saying is, maybe they don't know consciously that they can, so their conscious mind prevents them from finding it without the stick. People's processing of their senses is normally limited, and perhaps they have access to information they don't normally let themselves process, and projecting onto the stick allows them to perceive an aspect of reality that's normally obscured from consciousness.
    Also, that would fail to explain the fact that my dad says he can't hold the stick straight when he's passing over a stream. It will twist in his hands.
    Maybe the shaking is his unconscious mind trying to send the message to consciousness in an odd form? I've heard of people with split-brain surgery expressing weird messages to themselves by touching themselves in specific patterns on the back of their hand, but not being aware of it. People can also have involuntary muscle spasms for other reasons...
    Yeah, I can see how it would be an uncomfortable idea. I should point out again that my dad is very much an INTJ, and doesn't have a problem with it. He is very pragmatic, so if it works then it works. He doesn't feel inclined to argue with that.

    I'm going to try to persuade him to teach me (if I can do it). That way I will be able to speak from first-hand experience rather than 2nd hand.
    I still want to see if I can come up with an good, understandable explanation of why it does or doesn't work, and what role the stick plays. You don't mind, right?

  8. #8
    The Black Knight Domino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    MBTI
    eNFJ
    Enneagram
    4w3 sx/so
    Socionics
    eNFJ Ni
    Posts
    11,443

    Default

    Oh Jeff. Jeffjeffjeff. Everyone knows there's no water in Australia! Silly man.

    Welcome to the 21st century, Jeff. *pats you* Where we all have profound global knowledge. I won't hold your ignorance over you. It was an honest mistake.


    PS -- I find it interesting that your father can do that, actually.
    eNFJ 4w3 sx/so 468 tritype
    Neutral Good
    EII-Fi subtype, Ethical/Empath, Delta/Beta
    RLUEI, Choleric/Melancholic
    Inquistive/Limbic
    AIS Holland code
    Researcher: VDI-P
    Dramatic>Sensitive>Serious

  9. #9
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INFP
    Posts
    3,698

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    But what I'm saying is, maybe they don't know consciously that they can, so their conscious mind prevents them from finding it without the stick. People's processing of their senses is normally limited, and perhaps they have access to information they don't normally let themselves process, and projecting onto the stick allows them to perceive an aspect of reality that's normally obscured from consciousness.
    I find it funny that you find this alternative possibility amenable to a "sceptical" viewpoint. I guess it's a safe possibility, since it's impossible to disprove. However, it's also impossible to prove.

    Nonetheless, it doesn't explain why the "trick" doesn't work for my uncle alone, but does work when my dad puts one hand on him. Not sure if I explained it, by this hand was put on my uncle's shoulder, not on the wire my uncle was holding.


    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    Maybe the shaking is his unconscious mind trying to send the message to consciousness in an odd form? I've heard of people with split-brain surgery expressing weird messages to themselves by touching themselves in specific patterns on the back of their hand, but not being aware of it. People can also have involuntary muscle spasms for other reasons...

    I still want to see if I can come up with an good, understandable explanation of why it does or doesn't work, and what role the stick plays. You don't mind, right?
    Totally understand. Maybe you can explain magnetism to me as well. How metal is "attracted" to an object that isn't touching it in any way, and is even separated from it by a vacuum?

    There's a lot of weird stuff out there. That doesn't mean that there isn't a rational explanation. But saying that you won't believe in anything that you can't rationally explain now is to put a lot of faith in your current level of knowledge.

  10. #10
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INFP
    Posts
    3,698

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PinkPiranha View Post
    PS -- I find it interesting that your father can do that, actually.
    Soon I will be able to too. Then you will be sooo hot for me. And I will be magnificently indifferent. Who needs women when you can find water with a stick?

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 370
    Last Post: 02-07-2016, 09:54 PM
  2. What's the deal with this headlining news story (Casey Anthony)?
    By swordpath in forum Politics, History, and Current Events
    Replies: 137
    Last Post: 09-08-2012, 11:10 AM
  3. [MBTItm] What's the deal with this?
    By Lily flower in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 12-13-2010, 02:58 AM
  4. [NF] To NF males, what's the deal with this guy?
    By dee in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: 01-26-2010, 01:50 PM
  5. What's the deal with Socionics?
    By alicia91 in forum Socionics
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 07-02-2008, 08:56 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO