What You Need To Know About Ouija Boards After This Week's 'Bachelor' Episode

by Rosey Baker
Universal Studios

This week's episode of "The Bachelor" took Nick and the gals to New Orleans, which is said to be one of the most haunted cities in the US.

And the dates they went on — a trip to a haunted house and a tarot reading with a voodoo priestess — reflected that rich, spiritual side of NOLA.

During the group date at the haunted mansion, the ladies busted out a Ouija board to ask the ghost who lived there if she could tell them who was getting a rose that night.

The ladies started to notice the planchette moving toward the letter "D," and sure enough, that night, Danielle M. went home with the group date rose.

Ugh, I was REALLY hoping that dolphin chick would take it.

I'm sorry, but Alexis is hilarious, and they laugh harder together than Noah and Aly did in "The Notebook."

If she doesn't win, then I won't believe in love anymore.

But, I digress.

There's actually a scientific explanation for how Ouija boards work, and there's a reason that disclaimer on the box says it's only to be used for fun and games.

It's called the ideomotor effect, which is a fancy scientific term that means our desires can affect us in the form of involuntary movements.

Scientific tests done by American psychologist William James, English scientist Michael Faraday, American psychologist Ray Hyman and French chemist Michel Chevreul have proven that the majority of incidents accredited to paranormal beings or forces are actually just the result of ideomotor action.

Much like in hypnosis, muscle movements can be initiated through a person's mind by using the power of suggestion.

Meaning, if a person wants something badly enough or believes something thoroughly, they will do anything to get it or to prove it.

This explains the planchette's movement on a Ouija board.

And just so we're clear, it doesn't make you an idiot if you used to believe in this stuff.

Hyman said that "honest, intelligent people can unconsciously engage in muscular activity that is consistent with their expectations."

It's kind of like how Nick was miraculously able to dance on-rhythm when he went with Rachel, whom he expects to get down with in more ways than one.

So, if you watched Monday's episode and have been talking to the dead through your Ouija board all week, don't feel like a sap.

Every time I think about Hi-Chews, my mouth waters up like a dog's, but that doesn't make me an idiot. I just really love that Japanese candy.

Citations: How Do Ouija Boards Really Work? (Refinery 29), Ideometer Effect (The Skeptic's Dictionary)