The pendulum is used widely by professional dowsers or water-diviners, who often prefer it to the divining rod. As well as its traditional use in detecting water or minerals, the pendulum is variously used to divine the sex of eggs or fetuses, to diagnose illnesses, or to find the locations of lost objects or people. You can develop and test your own dowsing powers in the following experiments. You will need a simple pendulum which can be made by tying a finger ring or other small weight on a length of fine thread. About 12-18 inches (30-45cm) is fine. To use the pendulum, hold the end of the thread lightly between the thumb and first two fingers of one hand. Your hand should be held comfortably at about shoulder height so that the ring hangs down freely. Hold the pendulum as described above. Now simply TELL the pendulum to move back and forth. Do NOT try to make it swing by moving your hand - keep your hand still while staying relaxed. You will find that the pendulum starts to move as directed, slightly at first and then with increasing amplitude (keep up the mental intention). Now tell the pendulum to stop. The swing will quickly reduce until the pendulum stops moving. Try telling the pendulum to move in different ways - e.g., left to right, diagonally, clockwise, anticlockwise. In each case the pendulum will move in the intended direction. Practice these tests until you have developed a good sense of the ways in which the pendulum moves and the effects of your mental intentions on the movements.