Opinions on the topic of dowsing (also known as
water witching) are as varied within the Adventist church as they are
in the larger Christian community. Examples of various opinions
include: 1) it is nothing more than mere fakery, 2) it is a natural
skill based on natural laws that some have and others don't but can
learn if they wish, 3) it is natural "gift" which is transferable
rather than taught, 4) it is a method by which God can communicate
with us, 5) it is communication of an occult nature.
The author, the late Ben Hester, had more of a
scientific bent than a theological one, and held to option #2 above
until he, at the urging of two friends, researched the
subject very thoroughly. This book is part of the results of
that research. Here is the description that Ben wrote
himself for the back cover of the book.
"This is the first in-depth investigation of dowsing examining all known possibilities. The history of dowsing reveals horror stories that today's TV can't top. The "HOWS" and "WHYS" of dowsing are contradictory and opinionated, yet more and more people are learning to practice it without a single question. Everyone seems to desire the Aladdin's lamp of some supernatural power. Why not? What could be wrong with it? How do you know it is not a yet-to-be-discovered scientific phenomenon?
"Hester, with two researchers spent eight years asking just such questions and collecting the answers. These pages contain the history, the methods (old and new), the many explanations, and the results of field interviews with dowsers, well drillers and well owners. The answers they found were shocking.
"When all the theories were compared, all the opinions evaluated, and all the contradictions considered, the ancient biblical condemnation of "DIVINATION" began to make sense. In fact the biblical description of dowsing, the death penalty imposed for practicing it, and the exposing of its power source is the only reasonable consideration to be found. It is the only explanation avoided in all dowsing literature."