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Pleasing Terrors

Join acclaimed ghost storyteller Mike Brown for a bi-weekly tour through the shadows of history. The Pleasing Terrors Podcast features stories about haunted places, creepy history, and forgotten folklore.
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Aug 24, 2016

Wear garlic around your neck. Carry a wooden stake. Hang a crucifix on the wall, and never, ever, open the door for Dracula.

The superstitions that were meant to protect our ancestors from vampires taught them the most important lesson of all: never invite a monster inside. Yet with the birth of Spiritualism in the 19th century came a rise in the belief that the dead harbor secret knowledge from the living, and inviting a monstrous spirit into your home became easier than ever.   

The Ouija board, printed with letters and numbers, has entranced generations as a gateway between this world and the next. Groups gather around the board, hands touching the planchette, and hope to make contact with lost loved ones or benevolent guides with insight that only comes from beyond the grave.

But when you open the door into the darkness, you can’t control what may come slinking through. Murder, madness, and possession have haunted Ouija board users since its inception, but where does this evil really come from?   

The spirit world? Or our own minds? 

Episode Highlights: 

  • Vampire lore and superstition 
  • Usage and origins of the ouija board: Spiritualists & talking boards 
  • Pearl Curran and Emily Grant Hutchings: Spiritualist secretaries 
  • 1920s California madness 
  • Manipulated into murder by spirits 
  • Modern Ouija board possessions 
  • The ZoZo demon 
  • The Exorcist 
  • The ideomotor effect 

Resources: 

The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty 

The Exorcist (1973 film) 

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