I’ve seen a dozen times across several spiritual places, let alone here, people who ask for help because they can’t sense, hear, see, etc spirits. First and foremost, you’re not alone. It’s actually pretty common not to have them, so don’t panic. Clairsenses have to be worked on, like any magic, like any craft or talent. It takes time and practice. Like mathematics or painting, some people can have a better understanding and natural talen, but of course not entirely without studying and practice. That doesn’t mean you can’t ever learn them, it just means you have to put in a bit more effort.
However, when you don’t have your clairsenses, godphone, or otherwise spiritual skills honed, or maybe you don’t want to have or use them, these are some alternatives for communicating with spirits:
A spirit board, or “ouija” board as the marketed board game is called, is a simple communication device. It is a flat surface with letters, numbers, and a couple key phrases written on it in which you use a tool (a “planchette”) to place your fingers on as it slides across each letter or phrase, spelling out the message for you. You can use anything for this. Buy a cheap pink princess Ouija board from eBay (RIP Toys ‘R’ Us), get a custom handcrafted $400 purple heart wooden spirit board from Etsy, or just make a simple throwaway one from pen, paper, and a coin. You can use loose leaf lined paper and a ball point pen if you want.
Personally, I designed my own and used a board game design website to buy one for about $20. But when I’m in a pinch or too lazy to go in the other room, I have set aside consecrated paper that I write on with a consecrated pen. Do your tools have to be consecrated? No. It’s just polite. There are various benefits to consecration, from politeness to helping ward imposters and malevolent spirits, or even help bring spirits to you. But it’s not always necessary, especially not on a simple paper you’re probably going to throw out anyway. It’s usually better suited for tools you will use long-term for more specific purposes.
Typically they’re done using the common Latin Alphabet, but can be used with any language alphabet. Syllabets and other language systems can be tricky, so do what works best for you in the language you prefer. Key phrases you should probably try to include may be “Yes, No, Maybe, Don’t Know, Repeat, Don’t Understand, Hello, Goodbye.” You don’t need all of these, but they’re examples of what can be quickly chosen by the spirit instead of spelled out letter by letter. I’ve narrowed it down to Yes, No, and Don’t Know. You can include anything else you want, perhaps zodiac signs or planetary symbols depending on your purpose. Usually a cheap coin, like a US penny will work perfectly fine as your device, as long as it can smoothly run across the paper while you touch it.
Another quick and easy alterative is simply writing or drawing. There are slightly different variations to how it can work, but if you don’t have spiritual senses, then you don’t need to worry too much about that. In essence, you have a pen or pencil and a paper.
Personally, I have a notebook specifically for auto-writing, and if I want to communicate with a specific entity, I draw their sigil or name on the page I’m working on, write out and say their enn or mantra if they have one, and begin. If they don’t have a special enn or mantra, I usually just call out something generic like “XYZ, i call to thee, bring yourself to me and grace me with thy presence.”
You don’t have to say the fancy Ye Olde English thee, thy, thines but I like it personally. It’s a nice flare. Regardless, once you have called out to your entity, you place the tip of your pen or pencil on your paper and lighten your pressure. Rotate it slightly until you can feel it start to move on its own, and let it take over writing. Similarly, it can draw pictures if you let it.
You can use basic divination, such as tarot, runes, dice, stichomancy/bibliomancy (using a book or bible), or any other means of divination. in fact, you can even create your own. People make their own oracle decks all the time, and they do work well. But you can make anything into a divination tool so long as you give it meaning. Playing Cards, a deck of Yu-Gi-Oh cards, a bunch of rocks off the street, pogs, buttons, quite literally anything as long as you can read meaning from it.
You also don’t have to buy anything. If you really want something like a traditional tarot deck, but have no cash to get one, you can draw them. You don’t have to draw them perfectly, you can very simply write down the name of the card and just cut them out in strips. Or print them off and cut them out if you have access to a printer and ink to spare. I’ve drawn a few oracle decks by tracing the outline of a card shape, and then draw and cut out 30 or so illustrations.
I also have a deck made of paint sample cards I got from the hardware store. They’re free, have interesting names, and the colors can be very interesting to interpret. Divination can be a lot more vague or cryptic however, and won’t give you as in-depth answers as something spells or written out if you can’t sense intentions, phrases, or other things to help you, but it’s very good for overarching ideas.
The tool itself can and likely will have or gain a personality or spirit of its own, but you can still use it as a tool in which your contacted spirit will communicate through.
Technically another divination device (well, all of these are) but I wanted to include it separately. A pendulum is usually a weight dangling off a chain or thread. While you can use necklaces, there tends to be a bias towards the way it swings due to the way necklaces are connected to the object. Most ways Pendulums are used are that they swing in a certain direction for different answers, such as pointing you towards something, or swinging one way (such as vertically or horizontally) for Yes and No answers. Sometimes, the strength or length of the swing can be a strong answer, versus a shallow or weak swing as a non-answer.
In addition to these simple aspects, the Pendulum can have a similar method to the Spirit Board, in that you can create a flared board of letters that either the pendulum can swing strongly over certain letters that are correct, or it can swing in the direction of a letter. I made a circle with letters, merging ones that were similar enough (such as V/ W and I / J) and the pendulum can swing in the direction of a letter. While it can still require me to figure out which of two possible letters (front swing vs backswing) it can be helpful. Personally, though, I’m not very good at pendulum and tend to prefer spirit boards, but some people are much more adept at getting answers from a pendulum.
I hope these will help people not only communicate with spirits of their choosing, but also help cultivate your own interesting ideas and methods. Good luck !