Tag Archives | Parapsychology

Expanding Our Experience of Psi – Biophysical and Clinical Approaches to Parapsychology

While much of the current debate around the existence of psi exists in the field of psychology and cultural studies, the history of psychical research is actually based as much, if not more, in the physical sciences and clinical medicine. In a recent piece for Reality Sandwich researcher Paul Devereux discusses the biophysical experiments of Dr. Michael Persinger and Blake Dotta at Laurentian University, Ontario, and how the evidence from experiments like these is bringing our attention back to the physical characteristics of the phenomena:

“Parapsychology generally provides its evidence in the form of statistics, and so is all too readily subject to the charge of “lies, damned lies and statistics” – how reliable is monitoring lots of subjective responses to laboratory tests, and why isn’t psi robustly repeatable in experimental conditions?  When it comes to actual, real-life psi experiences – telepathic or precognitive events, apparitions and so forth – critics tend to level accusations of misperception or dishonesty against the claimants, and point out that in any case such reports are merely anecdotal, and not acceptable as scientific evidence.

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A Phantasmagoria of Scientific Jargon, Sleight of Hand and the Ol’ Scientistic Bait & Switch

“The horrors that (Mr. Clarke) witnessed in the dreary laboratory were to a certain extent salutary; he was conscious of being involved in an affair not altogether reputable, and for many years afterwards he clung bravely to the commonplace, and rejected all occasions of occult investigation. Indeed, on some homeopathic principle, he for some time attended the seances of distinguished mediums, hoping that the clumsy tricks of these gentlemen would make him altogether disgusted with mysticism of every kind, but the remedy, though caustic, was not efficacious.”

- from The Great God Pan, by Arthur Machen

A recent piece on LiveScience.com presents a study by Paul Brewer, a professor of communication at the University of Delaware, where participants were given one of four write ups, three dealt with a paranormal investigation, the fourth was on a different subject. One write up contained “science’y’ sounding terminology to describe the event, one couched it in metaphysical terminology, and the third, was the same as the first, only it contained a rebuttal from a science’y sounding authority.… Read the rest

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The High Cost of Remote Viewing

What would you pay to be able to see the unseeable? Or, to be more accurate, what would you pay to POSSIBLY be able to see the unseeable?

People have been seeking the consultation of psychics, fortune-tellers, soothsayers, and clairvoyants since the beginning of civilization.  It was customary for kings to have a psychic available at all times for advice on various issues, and the local priest often acted as a seer for their flock.  Astrology is a science (or pseudoscience, depending on one’s perspective) that dates back to antiquity.

According to a market research report from IBISWorld, it was estimated that the Psychic Services Industry took in $2.1 billion in revenue in 2012, with millions of people still calling “900” numbers for advice and accessing psychics online, and many others seeking in-person readings from brick and mortar psychics.

But, what if instead of having to rely on a psychic, one could be their own psychic?… Read the rest

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Paranormal or Normal?

John Kruth, Executive Director of the Rhine Research Center, which has been at the forefront of laboratory research into anomalous perception since its founding in 1935,  pointed out an interesting correlation between psi research and hypnosis:

“For decades, hypnosis was considered by many to be unproven and an illusion because there was no definitive mechanism provided to describe how it worked. Still there is no definitive mechanism that identifies the mechanics of hypnosis, but since there are practical applications in psychology and medicine, it has become an accepted practice.

Today, many people reject PSI phenomenon because no mechanism has been “proven” in the laboratory despite the years of “proof-oriented” experimental evidence for all aspects of PSI. Hypnosis was accepted because it has practical applications. Will the same thing happen with PSI in the coming years?”

One of the researchers helping to guide the field into more applicable areas is Jack Hunter, the Editor of the Paranthropology Journal of Anthropological Approaches to the Paranormal.  Hunter’s investigations into anomalous phenomena use insights gained from the fields of anthropology, specifically ethnographic approaches, that highlight participatory and experiential elements of the phenomena rather than laboratory findings.… Read the rest

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Second Sight May Take First Place in Consciousness Studies

What if anomalous perception isn’t anomalous, what if it’s an underlying component of consciousness itself? Psi skeptics might be in for a surprise if Dr. Jim Carpenter’s research is correct.

“There is a new theory about your mind — about where your decisions and experiences come from before you are aware of them. This theory has solid science behind it, and it suggests that there is a lot more going on in your mind than you realize.

Parts of this theory are familiar. Research has told us that brain events stand behind every thought we think and lead to them. And we have learned that many implicit psychological processes precede our experiences too, processes like subliminal sensations, stored memories and long-term values. These things aren’t conscious in themselves, but the unconscious mind uses them to help lead to whatever we do become conscious of.

A difference about this theory, called “First Sight,” is that it assumes that a much bigger domain of unconscious information stands behind experience.

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Time for Dogmatists to Put their Cards on the Table.

Adelaide Now has an interesting, and in my opinion misjudged, editorial piece on Tarot cards at the moment:

A SURPRISINGLY honest tarot reader at “Psychic Tarot Insights” has tried to locate Jill Meagher.
Here’s the surprisingly honest (if understated) bit: “Tarot is not considered 100 per cent accurate by law and I cannot claim to solve issues, only show what I have in the cards.”

They go on to say: “Something must have happened quickly; that there was a male person, stronger than her; there might be a car, something, something, rural area, something, something, eight weeks, something, something, sex and weapons and southeast and someone tall and strong. And a horse. Maybe a church. A dog.”

Other possible links are: “Deserts, woods, obscure valleys, caves, dens, holes, mountains, churchyards, ruined buildings, coalmines, muddy places, wells, houses, offices.

“Perhaps some of this information will help, can’t be sure until information comes in to verify it,” they conclude.

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Is Belief In Telepathy Unscientific?

Rigorous experiments seem to suggest that ESP and mental telepathy are real, yet these phenomena are rejected as hoaxes by mainstream science, because belief in mind reading would contradict the most basic laws of our understanding of reality. Or would it? Via Reality Sandwich, Chris Carter argues that telepathy and quantum physics go hand-in-hand:

Like Price and Hebb before them, both Wiseman and French hold that the claim of telepathy is so extraordinary that we need a greater level of evidence than we normally demand. Why should this be so? Most people believe in the reality of telepathy based on their own experiences, and are puzzled by the description of telepathy as “extraordinary.”

Psychologist James Alcock recently wrote that the claims of parapsychology “stand in defiance of the modern scientific worldview. That by itself does not mean that parapsychology is in error, but as the eminent neuropsychologist Donald Hebb pointed out, if the claims of parapsychology prove to be true, then physics and biology and neuroscience are horribly wrong in some fundamental respects.”

However, a number of leading physicists such as Henry Margenau, David Bohm, Brian Josephson, and Olivier Costra de Beauregard have repeatedly pointed out that nothing in quantum mechanics forbids psi phenomena.

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Ghosts and Loyd Auerbach

The Infinite and the Beyond — Podcast: Episode #017 — Ghosts and Loyd Auerbach

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In the latest episode of The Infinite and the Beyond, we speak to Parapsychologist Loyd Auerbach about his experiences as a paranormal investigator. Loyd runs the Office of Paranormal Investigations out in California and has been consulted and featured on many shows dealing with hauntings and the paranormal. Loyd talks to us about being a parapsychologist and ghosts, educational opportunities, investigating, and we even discuss some of the current television shows that depict paranormal investigation.

I share some of my own personal ghost stories, one of which occurred when I was very young and the other when I was much older. My interest in the paranormal started from this very early experience as a child; while the other experience taught me that you never know when you’re being watched and by whom.

We learn about famous escape artist and medium debunker Harry Houdini in A Corner in the Occult. Can you untie knots with your toes? Houdini could! Learn about this famous magician, his battle with the spiritualist movement during the early 20th century and why he is spotlighted in this episode’s edition of A Corner in the Occult.

Also in the episode, I read listener email. We see which listener won a copy of Jeva Singh-Anand’s book Bed Time Stories for the Faint of Heart. And in The Essence of Magick Series we discuss the ideas behind magickal intent and learn about what makes it up and how it applies to greater scope of one’s existence and not exclusively to the practice of magick. This is a real fun episode. I hope enjoy it!

To message the show please go here.

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Magick With Dr. Dean Radin

The Infinite and the BeyondPodcast: Episode #014 — Magick with Dr. Dean Radin

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In the latest episode of The Infinite and the Beyond, we learn about the legendary 14th century French alchemist Nicolas Flamel in “A Corner in the Occult.”

Rumors say that Nicholas and his wife were able to turn mercury into gold and as a result of their experiments possibly even created the mystical Elixir of Life providing them both with immortality.

We talk with author and parapsychologist Dr. Dean Radin, senior scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences and author of Entangled Minds, Extrasensory Experiences in a Quantum Reality.

During the course of the interview we talk about the Global Consciousness Project and touch upon what this could mean for the world. We also discuss his experiences as a research scientist and finally how his findings and current understandings relate to the art and practice of magick.

I also read some of the listener messages that I received since the last episode via the show website, podcast alley, and the show network. I even announced a new show contest where one lucky listener will win a copy of Dr. Radin’s most recent book Entangled Minds.

The drawing for this contest will occur in the next episode and if you are interested in participating be sure to enter by going here. All this and more in this great episode, blessed be and 93! Check the show notes for all links mentioned.

To message the show please go here.

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Dr. Robert Schoch on The Black Fridays!

The Black Fridays Episode 14 — Dr. Robert Schoch

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Robert SchochWell, what can we say? Dr. Robert Schoch! How humbling it has been to have the guests we’ve had so far! But, this goes beyond our expectations. We talk with Dr. Schoch about his findings in Bosnia and Japan and of course his discoveries that turned the scientific world on it’s head.

Dr. Robert M. Schoch, a full-time faculty member at the College of General Studies at Boston University since 1984, earned his Ph.D. (1983) in Geology and Geophysics at Yale University. He also holds an M.S. and M.Phil. in Geology and Geophysics from Yale, as well as degrees in Anthropology (B.A.) and Geology (B.S.) from George Washington University.

Dr. Schoch is the author or coauthor of both technical and popular books, including the trilogy with R. A. McNally: Voices of the Rocks: A Scientist Looks at Catastrophes and Ancient Civilizations (1999), Voyages of the Pyramid Builders: The True Origins of the Pyramids from Lost Egypt to Ancient America (2003), and Pyramid Quest: Secrets of the Great Pyramid and the Dawn of Civilization (2005).… Read the rest

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