by Marilyn Gang, Leader, Toronto Dowsers, January 2002
(This was written for the February 2002 issue of the Toronto Dowsers newsletter.)

The understanding of ethics and ethical dowsing is a critical component in the teaching and practice of successful dowsing.   I wanted to discuss this one time in depth because introductory dowsing classes may not have the resources to cover all these areas in depth, dowsing is changing and growing and with this ethics must be strengthened rather than weakened.  In addition, as we are a new group we must ensure that our integrity and practices are way beyond reproach among ourselves and in the community.

These are some of the fundamentals on which I based my own principles when I started this group. These are my own perspectives based on everything I've seen and learned so far and are evolving and will continue to evolve after experiences and discussions with other dowsers.

I have been involved in 2 areas while they were relatively obscure.  We were involved because we LOVED it.  It was our PASSION.  It was a part of us and we pursued these interests for the pure love of the interest.  We were part of "It" and "It" was part of us.  It consumed our hearts and our minds and our time.  Money was not a concern --- in fact we would almost pay others to let us "play".  It was definitely play, not work.  We were not inured in this because it was popular or the in thing or for greed or because it would help us get a job or make more money.   The first area I was involved with while it was still "pure" was Computing, the second area was Holistic Nutrition.   We were the geeks, the tekkies, the granola crunchies.  We LOVED it.  We loved it like mathematicians love the purity and truth of mathematics.  We loved it with all the innocence and fervor you have for your first love.

Because these areas had so much value, others started getting involved and for less altruistic reasons.  Marketing crashed our party.  Those who did not understand the Whole, the Source, the Concept, who were not interested in the depths and the Whole --- but sought solely the rewards --- started getting involved.

The aliveness, complexity and depths became watered down, diluted.

It was seen that these areas were good, therefore popular, therefore money could be made.  The love of money and the temptation towards power lead to spiritual corruption.  Those who were not attuned with what we were doing caused problems for others so rules were established, rigidity took place, the heart and light grew dimmer.

Internet was designed to enable academic research and freedom, education and free speech.  Because it was carelessly used by those who didn't love it, it has also become a tool for pornography, spying, viruses, spam, disinformation.

Holistic Nutrition was a lot more than taking gingko biloba to help you improve your thinking and being scared out of taking Vitamin E if you are having heart surgery.

Others who were on the outside looking in, those who were clever in recognizing a good thing were not Necessarily coming from the same place we were.  They want it easy.

Sheparding the Spirit of the Future of Dowsing:

Dowsing is about to undergo an explosion.  We want to be prepared for it.  We, who are currently now on the front line are the Stewards of dowsing and it is our responsibility to maintain the integrity, to direct this and to see that we evolve properly.   It is our JOB.

I hope that we do not relax our vigilance, that we do not try to make things easy in our desire to finally be understood by our critics (usually family) and to make it easy for those who do not comprehend; that we do not weaken the tenets, foundation and guidelines of Dowsing.

Dowsing is an Art, its a Sacred Art and as we embrace dowsing we come from our heart and involve our spirit.

It is not necessary for us to dilute the essence  of the concentration of the purity of dowsing to attract others, to have others we care about care about what we are doing.

The 4 dental assistants of one of our dentists saw one of our newsletters and said "What's dowsing?"  She told them.  They said "That's what I want.  The doctors don't have the answers any longer.  I want the truth."  Keep truth whole, do not weaken its vibration to make it more palatable to others, otherwise it is no longer truth.  Not everyone has an educated palate.

People have been waking up for awhile.  Look at the success and exponential growth of our group. As folks start to understand what dowsing is they want it.  Dowsing is taking off the way Reiki, Therapeutic Touch, etc. have.  It's also more applicable to a greater number of people and their needs and uses.

Others see you as a shining beacon of strength and knowledge and mastery.  Do not make yourself less in the vain hope that they will like you more.  For that can only lead to disappointment for all concerned.

When you stand tall and shining and proud and strong and confident in your abilities people will come to you and want what you have.  You want to be your best to give them your best, because you care about them and the best way to give them the best is for you to be your best.

Do not profane what is sacred.  This has contributed to our fall, in profaning and cheapening and violating the sacredness of free will, of sexuality, of love.  Let us remain committed and connected to the sacredness of dowsing and who we are as dowsers and we can heal those other sacred areas which have been grievously wounded.

We are the 1st generation in this new wave.
Let us remain vigilant in maintaining the purity, the essence.

Dowsing is a SACRED ART.  Let us follow through with that, hold on to its foundations and values because it is the RIGHT thing to so, not because it is the EASY thing to do.  Let us not profane it with convenience, with ease.  As you share dowsing with others let them understand that this is sacred and must be done with the highest good in mind.  Those who lack those transcendent qualities that you have in natural abundance thirst for what you possess, which you have achieved through intent, good habits, good thoughts, long practice.  There is more value in an art which requires accomplishment, that you have worked for and achieved.  Don't lessen the value for the sake of expediency.  Keep the sacred sacred.

You do not help a chicken out of its egg.  You do not do your homework for your children.  If you try to ease what is necessary in the struggle of learning you do a disservice to all.

Keep in mind its   SPIRIT   its ESSENCE   the FOUNDATIONS,  the PURPOSE, that you are dowsing for the HIGHEST GOOD.

When you share this teaching with others, dowsing is not merely a technique.  It is not just whirling your pendulum around and getting an answer.  It is a connection with YOUR intuition, YOUR higher self, universal knowledge, universal wisdom.  It is precious.   When you prepare to dowse you can re enforce this connection.   When you share this art with others, you share with them this knowledge.  You re-mind them of this and they will be grateful to you.  We are thirsty for this, we crave the re-connection to our source.  Dowsing is a way to get re-connected.

Any dowsing course ought to include this --- why you dowse, what is appropriate, areas which may not be appropriate.

You ask permission.  You ask if you can do it if you may do it if you should do it.  Sometimes you will get a no.  Sometimes it may be because you don't have the right to that information or it may not be time yet. Or something else.

It does not work if personal gain or your ego is involved, if you are not balanced or if you are emotionally attached to the outcome.  Know that.  Know that this be done for the highest good.

This is not merely a physical technique.  It is an art, it is a spiritual experience it is a way for you to re connect with your spirit and you will achieve results you may never be aware of on this plane.

Connect your head with your heart.   Please use it with reverence and with respect and grace and humility.

We must maintain the spirit, and above all the purity, the ethics and the integrity of dowsing.  Please.


There are some people who do not respect these ethics.  They ignore them because they just don't know or don't want to know or they are ignorant.  Some lack the ability to comprehend this.  Some willfully ignore this.

My grandfather was very religious and followed the rules.  Grampa was a card player but he would not play cards on Shabbos.   Once, when he was visiting, when I was a child, I asked Grampa to play cards with me.  He told me he could not.  I said "Grampa, we can play in my room and close the door and no one will know."  Grampa laughed at me, kindly, and of course did not play cards with me.  But I was speaking as a child, not as an adult.

Not only do they ignore these ethics but they may purposefully attempt to use dowsing for personal gain, to satisfy their ego.   Ralph Squire, Chapter Chair of the Mother Lode Chapter in California tells us: "One of the reasons why a dowser might not receive accurate answers could be because the asker does not ask the Universal Mind for permission from a pure mind and heart.   "Dowse for need - not greed" sums it up."

You do not interfere with someone's free will.  You do not take advantage of another, especially someone who is less fortunate mentally, physically or financially or spiritually than you are.

There is a well known dowser in one of my groups who, when he hears of an illness of someone you know, claims that he asks his guides for permission to heal them, he claims he receives permission, asks where they are now, heals them and claims they are now, say 90% healthy.  No one asks him to do this.  No one wants him to do this.  We feel he is interfering in a place he has no right to be and want him to stop and have asked him to do so.  He says he has the right to do this and that his guides have given him permission.  Is this so?  I don't think so.

I've heard several people who use guides or the dowsing system as a way to avoid taking personal responsibility for their decisions.  Rather than saying "I want ..."  or  "I think that... "  they preface their remarks with:  "My guides told me ..."  or  "My dowsing says that .... "   And -- they are wrong.  Of course I'm not saying that everyone who says this is doing this because many are truly guided, but there is an element who does.  What they are really saying is "this is what I want to do and I don't want to discuss it."

I hope you share with me humble awe as you read the following 2 paragraphs from the Preamble to the By-Laws of the American Society of Dowsers.  I hope I can drink from the same source of inspiration as they have and that we adopt and follow the spirit and the letter of the following two paragraphs:

"   By the same token, the insidious trap of spiritual pride is to be avoided by the dowser.  Psychic powers, intellectual aptitudes, faculties or physical skills are useless unless applied for the benefit of all, because they bring increased sensitivity. These may properly be expressed only in an increasing awareness of the oneness of all life and in the greater love for the whole of humanity.

Any activity that investigates, perpetuates and expands humankind's lore, mysteries, beliefs, traditions and useful abilities should command at once loyalty and service. In the energizing of such activity, the power generated in and by a group of interested persons is greater by far than the mathematical sum of its numbers -- one plus one is more than two."

As dowsing becomes more popular, more people do it and others see dowsers as a way for help with their situation.  As people become better at this, more and more ask for their help, the dowser is spending more time on this and might start neglecting ways they have of traditionally making money so they can help people.

This is how the good ones start out.  They just start doing it because they love it and they are good.  Folks find out, want their help and by and by they are doing it a lot and in our society money is a way to exchange energy, for that is what it is, exchanging energy.

When Alan Reed spoke to us in November he told us about his master who didn't even let him dowse in certain areas until he was ready to do so --- it took about a year of concentrated dowsing until his master gave him permission to go to the next level.

From what I've seen so far --- those who do this best do it because they are naturally gifted this way.

You do it because you love it, because you are good and people see that and want your help.
You spend time with good people who are doing it --- instructors, teachers, masters, workshops.
You work with people, you are in demand.

I see too many people take a weekend workshop, decide they are a Reiki master and 2 months later hang out a shingle.  There is so much one does not know, and you don't know that you donít know.

An ďapprenticeĒ type program should take at least a year.  You also have to learn how to talk with people, their psychology, their frailties, their fears and how you want to deal with it.   In Radionics, a similar modality, you are told to work only on yourself for the first year.  I would like to see dowsers do something similar.

Please temper enthusiasm with patience, caution, study, exposure and practice.

There is a dowser in a chapter out west, someone who has been dowsing for awhile, who knows the lingo and who uses meetings as an opportunity to solicit clients.  He meets somebody, goes up to them, talks with them for a little while and pretty soon says something like "I can clear you (or your house or whatever) for only $350."   He is exhibiting the behavior here of a predator.  We call it "Pulling a Norton."  Several chapter leaders have told me of the [unfortunate] frequency of this kind of behavior in their chapters.

What do we do?  It's a very tough situation for chapter leaders.  What if he is successful?  With the Nortons of the world, we have seen that his results are mediocre.  What's the difference between this conmanship and someone who is informing you of a good service and his/her expertise and availability?

There is no firm answer for this, but here's a guide (that Ladies ought to be able to identify with more easily):  You know the difference between a guy asking you out on a date and one who is sleazily trying to hit on you?  Remember?  Women are more aware of these vibes than men because we have had more of a need to develop these survival antennae.

Once again, Ralph Squire tells us:  "As far as the so called dowsers, without scruples, is concerned, they are in the same class with the Coyote, nature's predator.  I find the world full of Coyotes."  (He is talking of the coyote here in its archetypal role in Native Medicine as "The Trickster".)

When you come to these meetings you need to feel you are in a safe space that you can trust. We all hold the awareness that we attract only the most appropriate energy here, that this is the most beneficial energy and space for all concerned.

The following was written by Joyce Carroll, daughter of Gladys & Harold McCoy, at ORI (Ozark Research Institute):


I will Remember:
None of us are "All knowing or All Seeing"
I will not automatically assume every person wants a healing from me or that
they wish to hear my opinion on their particular challenge.
No matter how eager I may be to help.  I will WAIT until I am asked to help
and until I have received Permission to help.
Most of us prefer not to have our challenges advertised to the world.  I will
Respect others confidences and privacy.
I will not intrude on anyone's space.

I will never work with an ego or visions of "grandeur".
I will always work from the Heart, with Pure loving intent.

- Joyce Carroll
The money thing is a tough one.  It is so heavily intertwined with ego and self worth and identity and with survival.  Has any one not been as honest as they could be with regard to money out of fear?  I know I have done some things I was not proud of at the time because I was afraid and felt I was in lack.

Before I started this group I saw that there were workshops and instructions for dowsing that cost $200 / day,  $600 / weekend.  While it is not my right to tell another person how to lead their business, I did and still do believe that excellent and professional dowsing instruction could be obtained at a much lower cost.   When things get too expensive I feel the person is not there to try and help me rather they want me there so I can help their pocketbook.  Iím not willing to participate in this.  I do not dispute the absolute fact that people spend much time learning their craft and deserve compensation, however, I prefer fair compensation, not gouging the customer.  As I set up programmes I am aware of this and communicate my feelings to our guest presenters.  Things seem to be working out well so far in this regard and that we are in a WIN-WIN-WIN situation:  You   Me  and God.

The money issue is such a tough one to deal with because it deals with our self image our self worth our self confidence.  It's the way its currently done in our society but perhaps because dowsing is such a fluid, energetic area Iím uncomfortable with folks charging fixed rates by the hour or the session.  Maybe this will take place in our future and I know folks who do this but Iím not comfortable with it at the moment.  We are still so grass roots.  If the dowsing professional sets a rate, shouldn't a dowser be able to dowse how much to charge each client? If we are changing the ways, why do we accept the mainstream model in this all important and vulnerable area?

I appreciate those who have the comfort in their own abilities and faith and trust in others to say to people they help  "Pay me what you think its worth."  For we know that things do work out when we trust in spirit and ask for the best for all concerned, don't they?  In the ASD's Code of Ethics, I especially appreciate Section 4:

Section 4.   They shall refuse to undertake, if compensation for such work is involved, work which may be of questionable value or result, without first advising as to the probability of success.
One of the dowsers down south who does a lot exorcisms says  ďBy misusing dowsing for personal gain you become part of the problem.Ē

I am beginning to understand why some areas have been considered to be "occult".  It may not have started out as a wish to have power and control over others, however, because some people are less well equipped to deal with certain areas than others.  There are some things you don't want to attempt until --- unless --- you are very proficient.  Very.   It does seem a bit of a stretch to go from dowsing vitamins one week to attempting exorcisms the following week, and, this is what many have been doing.  It is possible we over estimate our own abilities and under estimate the profundity of this kind of work.   I don't think we fully comprehend some of these areas.  There is a reason why we call them:  dark, occult, hidden.  I recommend caution and that you approach certain areas with due diligence.  You don't want to open up something powerful you can't deal with.

When you help people, are you coming from a place of successful experience? Or is it projected wishful thinking?

When people offer you help, do you have a sense that they are who they say they are and that they can do for you what they claim?  Or do you want to allow yourself to be taken advantage of because you so want to believe what people promise you because they prey on your fears?  When someone gives you advice on relationships, are that person's relationships reasonably solid?  If they offer you advice on finances, what is their track record for their own financial success?  If they offer you advice on health, how healthy do they look to you?  really?  Do you get their energy, the substance, the reality, or do you go for the promises, the illusion, the false hopes once again?

If you say you want to heal, are you ready for this, really and truly?  Are you ready to help others?  Or, are you a Chiron --- a Wounded Healer?  So many of us, who have gone through a great deal of emotional pain dearly want to help others, because we know how awful it feels and we want to be seen to be helping others, rather than remaining a wounded puppy.  So we take courses on healing --- when we ought to focus on healing ourselves, but we "learn" a technique and go out to work on others --- and in doing so, often transfer our woundology to them.

Again, from the Ishayas:  "It all starts with a choice. Your choice. The only lasting way to make a difference in the healing of the world is to heal yourself first. That one act of realizing your enlightenment lets more love in to the world. In to your family, your children, than any other gift you can imagine giving. No amount of money, no words of wisdom, or love. No amount of hugs or toys can compare. There is no act of love greater than committing to do whatever it takes to realize your enlightened status. You can't give what you don't have. You can't expect to rid the world of negativity when your own mind is still polluting it. Physician, heal thyself.  Heal thyself and the world will be healed as a result of that, not the other way around. By your fully expressing the light of perfection in you, you free everyone else up to do the same. Don't act small because you don't want to offend.  Be the real you.  A perfect child of God. In every moment.  Mastering this is what serves humanity most."
Your integrity must be impeccable in your dowsing space.  Otherwise it can be like passing gas.  It might be small, but it is noticeable.

Some of us think we are ready before we really are.  Others think they are never ready.

We have an exciting responsibility before us.  Let us exercise our stewardship with discernment, good judgment, great wisdom, remaining true to ourselves and our craft, doing what is right rather that which is easy, popular or profitable as we focus with strong, clear laser light intent on the positive. Your energy goes where your attention flows.

My thanks to: Mary Marie Satterlee, Inez Lindsey, Mardi Gieseler, Ralph Squire, Brigitte Lortie, Peter Coles and the Toronto Dowsers who contributed, guided and encouraged me in developing the above.   - Marilyn  -

copyright © 2002,2003 by Marilyn Gang