Friday, January 31, 2014

Sweden’s The Spirit in the Glass and Black Madame

The Spirit in the Glass is Sweden’s version of a Ouija Board. Teenagers mostly participate in this activity. A large piece of paper or cardboard is used as the surface. A glass is used as a template to draw circles, within these circles are placed the letters of the alphabet and the numbers 0-9. The words: Yes, No, I Don’t Know, Start and Finish are written as well.

This glass is then used as the plancette. Before starting this glass must be warmed up. The teens do this by rubbing it between their hands, breathing on it, or warming it with a candle that has been lit.

It is warned that this activity should never be done in a room that has mirrors for the spirit can appear within this mirror--which will upset it.  This spirit then will shatter the mirror into pieces.

The teens place The Spirit in the Glass in a dark room with only candles for light. The young participants after warming the glass take turns asking a question by placing the open rim of the glass next to their mouths and whispering their question. It is then placed open rim down on the paper.

The participants place their fingers on the bottom of the glass as the answer is spelled out. If no answer is given the glass usually just tips over.

There are strict rules as to what question can and cannot be asked. For instance, the participant should never ask, “When will I die?” or “Can I speak to the devil?”

One legend is told about a young man who broke one of these rules. He asked when he would die--the glass moved to the number “4” and then to the number “0”--so 40 years old. Eerily years later to the day he died when he committed suicide by hanging himself at the age of 40.

Black Madame, Come Out!

Black Madame is the Swedish version of “Bloody Mary.” But “Swedish children are more dismissive of spirits” so their version of this game is not as scary.

The traditional game involves Black Madame or in Swedish Svarta Madame appearing after a child stands in front of a mirror and states 12 times “I don’t believe in you, Black Madame.”

Yet another version involves them chanting into a bathroom mirror “Black Madame, Black Madame, daughter of the devil show yourself.” As they chant this phrase they splash water on the mirror.

This chanting is most often done on a “dare” just like Bloody Mary.

If Black Madame appears in the mirror it is said she has green hair, red teeth and luminous yellow eyes.

Other names for her include: Bloody Black Madame, White Madame, Dirty Madame and Creepy Madame. In the 1970s some Swedish children adopted the European names of “Mary” and “Black Molly”--but the term Svarta Madame is still used widely in Sweden.

This game actually originated in Europe centuries before the European, Swedish or American children’s versions. It was a fortune-telling game--which involved “mirror gazing.”

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