Get Out Your Ouija Boards: The Facilitated Communication Train Rolls on to Idolsville

Now boys and girls those of you who were good remember that we talked about Facilitated Communication last week. Facilitated Communication or FC basically means that the parents, guardians or molesters of autistic kids use them as human Ouija boards guiding their hands around a pen or pencil to sketch out messages from the beyond. If you’re a Christian you believe those messages come from Jeebus. If you’re a New Ager, you believe they come from the wacky consciousness of a living universe. If you’re a Muslim you believe they come from a crazy hairy guy with anger management problems.

If you’re Jewish… ah if you’re Jewish you’re not supposed to be using mediums or ouija boards, human or otherwise. You’re supposed to rely on G-d and his Torah. But FC like most avodah zara finds its way into the frum world too where it has its defenders.

Picking up on this thread over at YeshivaWorld where my post was referenced

Now the introducer of this thread tries to claim that it’s not prophecy but some sort of “spiritual radar” (I’m sorry is spiritual radar a Torah term, where exactly does it originate from?) that tells you exactly what the weatherman would tell you.

I. personally, feel that there is no more prophecy here than one would get from the weatherman telling us that a storm is forming or is headed our way….The Autistics simply use information from a kind of spiritual radar source to give us warnings. To say that if we don’t do tshuva, trouble lies ahead, is far from a new prophecy. This has been repeated through the ages.

So it’s not prophecy is it? Let’s sum up prophecy. Hashem sends a navi to warn us that either we do Tesuvah or a coming catastrophe will befall us. That’s what the people here are doing. They are warning of a coming catastrophe and then warning people to do Tesuvah. It is literal prophecy. Look up Yonah or Yirmiyahu.

Yes we’re told all the time that we have to do tesuvah or bad things will happen. This is however a specific prediction combined with a command. That is the prerogative of a Navi.

Anyone can tell you that if you cross a red light bad things will happen. If however I tell you that if you cross a bad light, I sense that bad things will soon happen to you, I have moved from common sense to the realm of the supernatural making me either a prophet, a witch or a fraud. You pick.

Then there’s the even more dishonest argument that if this happened to these kids it could be for only one purpose alone!

we know, i hope everybody will agree on this one , that Hashem is in charge ,and all he does is for a reason. not reasons we can always understand .

Funny how often people begin arguments with this premise only when the whole thrust of their argument is that they know exactly why Hashem is doing it

when a person is a vegetable there is very little gashmiyus,and the neshama has no more boundaries,nothing can separate her from her Creator.and thus the abilty to actually become more of a neshama than a body.

That’s wacky theology at best. Is someone who’s dead from the neck down more neshama simply because he’s disconnected from a lot of gashmiyus things? Of if I lock you in a box and feed you through a straw for 20 years, do you become a malach? The theology that says Gashmiyus is evil in contrast to the spirit is absurdly Catholic.

So in other words by this logic if someone is physically cut off, clearly they’re receiving messages from heaven. After all why would Hashem do so otherwise?

The answer is we don’t know why. We don’t know why Hashem does things. We don’t know why kids wind up autistic or crippled for life or suffering from horrible diseases. WE DON’T KNOW.

Other people’s suffering and our own should encourage us to do Tesuvah. It should encourage us to be kind. It should not allow us to become deluded into believing we are hearing prophecies or to rely on superstition and mediums and other things forbidden explicitly by the Torah. At best they merely produce nonsense. At worst their sources may be something other than Hashem entirely.

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5 thoughts on “Get Out Your Ouija Boards: The Facilitated Communication Train Rolls on to Idolsville

  1. d says:

    what I find most troubling about FC is not the ridiculous Jewish angle – its the fact that, once again, Jewish people take something that has been thoroughly and utterly discredited by every researcher in the world and make something holy out of it. Say something about ruchnius, and all logic, common sense, and scientific evidence becomes meaningless.

    Maybe is we taught our youth to think instead of force-feeding them vague spiritual claims that we make up, this would not be a problem in our society.

  2. samuraimohel says:

    Sorry D but FC is far from something unique to Jews, it’s far more popular among some Christians and various New Age types. It’s not something Jews took that the rest of the world has discarded. It’s some Jews following in the path of the rest of the world

    People can’t be taught to think. They either can or can’t.

  3. d says:

    I didnt say discarded, I said discredited. Lots of religous kooks still buy into this crap. However, as the Jewish Right loves to point out, Jews are “better” and “smarter” and therefore should be held to a higher standard. But that is not my point.

    I just wish that Jews would stop pretending that science has no place in the Torah, and that evidence is irrelevant to decisionmaking.

  4. samuraimohel says:

    Lots of non-religious tend to buy into it too since it’s spiritualism which is really more new age.

    Jews should be held to a higher standard and so? How much of the jewish community is involved in FC? Most Jews have never heard of it. Jews being held to a higher standard in the hands of some is a cheap way of bashing Jews.

    Science has a place in Torah. Just not a supreme one

  5. Rafi says:

    May this practice be quickly destroyed from among us. Amen

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