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Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Nancy L. Zingrone

Nancy L. Zingrone

In a short paper published in the newsletter of the Forever Family Foundation  Nancy L. Zingrone and I briefly discussed “Bystander’s Perceptions of Deathbed Phenomena” (Signs of Life, 2013, 10(4), 5, 8; click here  and go to page 5). These cases include visual, auditory and other perceptions taking place around someone who is dying.

We start our discussion with cases in which mists and lights are seen toDeath scene Davis Death abd the After-Life come out of the body of a dying person. We wrote: “Sometimes what is perceived is something that looks like a replica of the body of the dying person. Here is an example: ‘I approached the ward as the child drew its final breath. Then I saw mist above the little body. It took the shape of the body which lay on the bed. This was attached by a very fine silver cord. The replica was about three feet from the body on the bed. It rose gradually to above five feet above the body, then gradually lifted itself into an upright position. It then floated away.’ ” This case was taken from Robert Crookall’s Events on the Threshold of the After Life (Moradabad, India: Darshana International, 1967, p. 40), a book that includes many of these  cases.

Crookall Events

Rogo NAD vol 2Other cases consist of music heard and apparitions seen around deathbeds. The cases of music have been discussed in detail before by Ernesto Bozzano and D. Scott Rogo. Here is one case from Gurney,

Ernesto Bozzano

Ernesto Bozzano

Myers and Podmore’s classic book Phantasms of the Living (London: Trubner, 1886, 2 vols.). We wrote: “One case involved the death of a child, which took place on a Tuesday. While the child did not hear anything, her family was able to hear music, which started before the death on the previous Saturday, and went on on Sunday and on the day of the death. The family heard ‘wild notes of an Æolian harp, which rose and fell distinctively, and increased gradually, until the room was full of sound . . .’ ” A witness added, “my old nurse and aunt came up to see how Lilly was, and were, with my husband, all in the room with the child. I had gone down into the kitchen . . . when the same sounds of Æolian music were heard by all three in the room, and I heard the same in the kitchen.”

Phantasms of the Living vol 2

Cases like this are discussed today under the name of shared death experiences. We end the short article calling for more systematic attention to the study of these cases and their features, as well as their relationship to other variables.

 

 

Quality Courses in Parapsychology

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Irwin Education in ParapsychologyWhile parapsychology is an underdeveloped academic field, many of us involved in it have been concerned for years about the lack of proper training and education in the field (for my distinctions between training and education click here). Recent discussions of the problems with this enterprise and the need to improve and expand it have been presented by Harvey J. Irwin  in his monograph Education in Parapsychology  and by Nancy L. Zingrone in her video “Education in Parapsychology: Context, Problems, Needs” (see also one of my blogs).

Zingrone Education in Parapsychology

While there are lists presenting places where courses (click here  and here) and some general thoughtful advice can be found, my interest here is to offer some practical advice regarding choosing courses.

Unfortunately the Web is full of courses that seem to be of low quality and that do not represent the serious scientific parapsychological literature. For this reason prospective students need to do their own research to decide what to do. I am suggesting the following criteria as general guidelines, and not as definitive statements. But bear in mind that I am concerned here with parapsychology as a scientific and scholarly field and not with amateur investigations or with psychic development.

Where is the Course Offered?

The first thing to consider is where are these courses offered? What type of institution or organization is behind the courses? Is this a fly-by-night place, or a place of some reputation such as an accredited college or university? There are respectable private organizations of good standing that are not colleges or universities. These organizations also offer good courses, even if they are not accredited (bear in mind that accreditation may involve factors other than course quality). But there are other places—including unaccredited universities and colleges—that lack such standing.

The point here is to investigate the organization, to find out if they have a history of good work. It is easy to check the website of any organization to see their philosophy. If, for example, they mix occultism with parapsychology, or they do not have a scientific approach, then the courses may not be for you.

Who is Teaching?

Perhaps even more important than the institution or organization hosting the course is the often neglected question of who is teaching it. If possible, and this is not always the case, you can obtain biographical information about instructors that will help you assess the quality of the course. An obvious question here is the educational background of the teacher. Generally in academia individuals with doctoral level training have a better handle on a field (in terms of theories, methods, and findings) than individuals without such backgrounds. Presumably they also have a better sense of the advantages and limitations of the tools used to explore psychic phenomena than persons without such training.

And of course you need to see if this person has a good track record in the field. Has she or he conducted work in the topic of the course? We have a right to have some misgivings about someone who teaches about the history of and research methods of the field, or about theoretical ideas coming from anthropology, medicine, physics, or psychology if that person does not have training in the area. It is common sense to prefer to have someone with some experience in the field teach you rather than someone who has no experience at all, and this is particularly important in a controversial area such as parapsychology. Of course in real life sometimes you have to teach or lecture about something that is not your specialty, and many newly-minted PhDs have to teach university courses outside of their specialties, such as 101 level courses. That’s also true in our field. Nonetheless, these are useful questions to help you decide about which courses you may want to take and which teachers you want to trust.

You may also ask if this person’s work has been presented in peer-reviewed publications. I am not saying that persons without peer-reviewed publications (or doctoral degrees) cannot be good teachers. In fact, some may be better than those with doctoral degrees (because some academics can be kind of stuffy). But in general you want to have information that assures you that the teacher has been well-trained in the topic in question.

When you are assessing a potential teacher and examining their publications you need to make a difference between academic and popular work. Academic publishing gives some assurance that the work is generally acceptable and of quality because it is peer-reviewed (while bearing in mind the subjectivity of the process, the many differences of opinion within academia, and the prejudices against parapsychological work). Again, this is a question of degree, there are some individuals who are very capable and do not have an academic publishing record, so we need to bear that in mind. This includes those who  are in essence pure educators or who have no pretensions or interest in being researchers. But in general, if a potential teacher is only blogging, or writing articles for magazines or newspapers, or blogging on YouTube or elsewhere and does not have any academic publications, they may not be the right teacher for you.

Another useful piece of information to consider is whether the person teaching the course is a member of the Parapsychological Association , the professional association of parapsychological researchers and scholars. This is more impressive if the person is a Full Member, because such level of membership requires more accomplishments. Similarly you may talk to other people in the field about their views of the reputation of capabilities of the teacher. Again, these criteria may be useful, but they are not necessarily conclusive. There are many researchers in the field who are not Full members of the Association, or not members of the PA at all, or who are not prominent enough to be known by others, but still they may have a lot to offer.

PA logo

Finally, I would suggest being careful with those teachers who have set answers for everything, either on the believing or on the skeptical side. Some, inspired by personal experiences, philosophical systems, or just plain panache, claim to know more than the rest of us and sometimes are too sure of their facts. This is a big indicator of possible problems because parapsychology is an uncertain field. It is possible that they are right, but more likely that they are wrong if they take the “my way or the highway” approach to the material. So definitely keep this in mind and compare this individual’s perspective with what you have read and with the approaches of others.

Course Content

Then there is the obvious issue of course content. It is important to investigate whether the course represents generally accepted scientific knowledge in the field, or at least general topics found in the literature, many of which are controversial. Of basic importance here is that the course should be based on scholarly and scientific work published in the main journals and best books in the field.

Currently we have very few courses (if any) that may be labeled as professional education in parapsychology, even if based on serious work. What we have are a handful of good general introductions, either overviews or discussions of specific topics available from various sources.

A general problem are those courses that focus only on the teachers’ own research and theories, especially if they are unpublished in the academic literature. If the course is presented as an overview of parapsychology, or of a particular area, it should represent scholarship and research in the field as a whole and not only the work of the instructor. This does not means there are no good courses that focus mainly on the teacher’s work, but such courses are far from being representative of the field at large. Of course this objection does not apply if the course is openly advertised as one based on the teacher’s work.

Some courses are labeled parapsychology, but they seem to be an excuse to discuss occult practices, psychic development, and many other topics. Be cautious of those courses than present parapsychology solely as the study of hauntings and poltergeists, and particularly when they place much emphasis on the use of “detectors” of spirits, and all sorts of psychic forces. All those topics deserve investigation, but many popular courses present them in exaggerated ways.

Similarly, be sure to distinguish courses based on scientific research from those based on psychic or spiritual sources of information. While fulfilling and important to many people, and possibly containing insights and truths, these are not parapsychology courses. The point is not to put down alternate views and approaches to psychic phenomena, just to establish differences between these approaches and parapsychology.

While much of what I have said may be common sense to some, I believe many are not aware of these issues. I do not oppose courses on some of the topics I have critiqued as long as they are not presented as parapsychology. The field shares things with many practices and psychic movements, but its approach is different.

Perspective

I am aware that some people may see my ideas and attitude as too stuffy or rigid. But I believe these are important considerations if your interest lies in scholarly and scientific approaches. People use the term parapsychology differently, but we should not be confusing the field with the wider psychic world of beliefs and practices.

I would like to emphasize again that the points I have made are to be considered as general guidelines, not as strict criteria to evaluate courses. It is certainly possible that you can find a good course coming from an organization or a teacher with little or no track record in the field. A teacher may present a good course even if he or she has no graduate education, academic publications, or even if he or she has not conducted research in the area or is a member of the Parapsychological Association. My aim has been to present some general indicators and what I suggest is to use them as a checklist, so that you may decide on courses on the basis of several joint criteria.

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Alvarado, C.S. (2011). On doubles and excursions from the physical body, 1876–1956. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 25, 563-580.

D'Assier Posthumous Humanity“This Essay Review is about the ideas of a group of authors who contributed to constructing and maintaining the concept that some principle inherent in human beings was capable of leaving the physical body, and thus accounted for phenomena such as apparitions of the living and what later came to be called out-of-body and near-death experiences. The authors in question believed the phenomena were explained by the projection of a spirit, or some sort of subtle body sometimes referred to as a ‘double,’ from the physical body.” The review includes “On the Trans-Corporeal Action of Spirit” by William Stainton Moses

William Stainton Moses

William Stainton Moses

(under the pseudonym M. A. Oxon; Human Nature, 10, 1876, 97–125, 145–157); Posthumous Humanity: A Study of Phantoms, by Adolphe D’Assier (London: George Redway, 1887); Le Fantôme des Vivants, by Hector Durville (Paris: Librairie du Magnétisme, 1909), The Case for Astral Projection by Sylvan J. Muldoon (Chicago: Ariel Press, 1936); Les Phénomènes de Bilocation, by Ernesto Bozzano (Paris: Jean Meyer, 1937); The Phenomena of Astral Projection, by Sylvan J. Muldoon and Hereward Carrington (London: Rider, 1951); “ESP Projection: Spontaneous Cases and the Experimental Method,” by Hornell Hart (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, 48, 1954, 121–146); and “Six Theories about Apparitions” by Hornell Hart et al. (Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research, 50, 1956, 153–239).

Durville Les Fantome des Vivants

 

Muldoon Carrington Phenomena Astral Projection 2

 

Jason Braithwaite

Jason Braithwaite

Braithwaite, J.J., Samson. D., Apperly, I., Broglia, E., & Hulleman, J. (2011). Cognitive correlates of the spontaneous out-of-body experience (OBE) in the psychologically normal population: Evidence for an increased role of temporal-lobe instability, body-distortion processing, and impairments in own-body transformations. Cortex, 47, 839-853.

Recent findings from studies of epileptic patients and schizotypes have suggested that disruptions in multi-sensory integration processes may underlie a predisposition to report out-of-body experiences. It has been argued that these disruptions lead to a breakdown in own-body processing and embodiment. Here we present two studies which provide the first investigation of predisposition to OBEs in the normal population as measured primarily by the recently devised Cardiff anomalous perception scale (CAPS). The Launay-Slade Hallucination scale (LSHS) was also employed to provide a measure of general hallucination proneness. In Study 1, 63 University students participated in the study, 17 of whom (26%) claimed to have experienced at least one OBE in their lifetime. OBEers reported significantly more perceptually anomalies (elevated CAPS scores) but these were primarily associated with specific measures of temporal-lobe instability and body-distortion processing. Study 2 demonstrated that OBEers and those scoring high on measures of temporal-lobe instability/body-distortion processing were significantly impaired, relative to controls, at a task requiring mental own-body transformations (OBTs). These results extend the findings from epileptic patient studies to the psychologically normal population and are consistent with there being a disruption in temporal-lobe and body-based processing underlying OBE-type experiences.

Brandt, C., Kramme, C., Storm, H., & Pohlmann-Eden, B. (2009). Out-of-body experience and auditory and visual hallucinations in a patient with cardiogenic syncope: Crucial role of cardiac event recorder in establishing the diagnosis. Epilepsy and Behavior, 15, 254-255.

Out-of-body experience (OBE) and visual and auditory hallucinations can occur in a variety of medical conditions. We describe a 48-year-old male patient who experienced several paroxysmal events with different combinations of the aforementioned symptoms that could finally be attributed to cardiogenic syncope after subcutaneous implantation of an event recorder and that ceased after implantation of a cardiac pacemaker. Hallucinations and OBE are well-known phenomena in syncope. The special purpose of this report is to highlight the crucial role of implantation of the event recorder in establishing the diagnosis and the additional support of the diagnosis by the cessation after implanting the cardiac pacemaker.

Andra Smith

Andra Smith

Smith, A.M., & Messier, C. (2014). Voluntary out-of-body experience: An fMRI study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8:70. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2014.00070

The present single-case study examined functional brain imaging patterns in a participant that reported being able, at will, to produce somatosensory sensations that are experienced as her body moving outside the boundaries of her physical body all the while remaining aware of her unmoving physical body. We found that the brain functional changes associated with the reported extra-corporeal experience (ECE) were different than those observed in motor imagery. Activations were mainly left-sided and involved the left supplementary motor area and supramarginal and posterior superior temporal gyri, the last two overlapping with the temporal parietal junction that has been associated with out-of-body experiences. The cerebellum also showed activation that is consistent with the participant’s report of the impression of movement during the ECE. There was also left middle and superior orbital frontal gyri activity, regions often associated with action monitoring. The results suggest that the ECE reported here represents an unusual type of kinesthetic imagery.

Devin Blair Terhune

Devin Blair Terhune

Terhune, D.B. (2009). The incidence and determinants of visual phenomenology during out-of-body experiences. Cortex, 45, 236-242.

The visual content of out-of-body experiences (OBEs) has received little attention but a number of theories of OBEs include implicit predictions regarding the determinants of this phenomenological feature. Hypnagogic imagery and unusual sleep experiences, weak synaesthesia and preference for employing object and spatial visual imagic cognitive styles were psychometrically measured along with the incidence of self-reported OBEs and the absence or presence of visual content therein, in a sample of individuals drawn from the general population. Seventy percent of individuals who had experienced an OBE reported that the experience included some form of visual content. These individuals exhibited greater scores on the measures of preference for object visual imagic cognition and weak synaesthesia than those who reported an absence of visual content during their OBE. Subsequent analysis revealed that the measure of weak synaesthesia was the stronger discriminator of the two cohorts. The results are discussed within the context of the synaesthetic model of visual phenomenology during OBEs. This account proposes that visual content appears during these experiences through a process of cognitive dedifferentiation in which visual hallucinations are derived from available non-visual sensory cues and that such dedifferentiation is made possible through an underlying characteristic hyperconnectivity of cortical structures regulating vestibular and visual representations of the body and those responsible for the rotation of environmental objects. Predictions derived from this account and suggestions for future research are proffered.

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Nancy Zingrone and I are organizing a small online conference about “Parapsychology and Psychology: Research and Theory.” This will take place on November 1 and 2 of the current year. As stated in the conference page, where you will find information about registration:

“On November 1st and 2nd, 2014 an international group of scientists and scholars will present a variety of papers and posters on the interface between parapsychology and psychology. Presenters will cover such topics as altered states of consciousness, personality and cognitive variables, and clinical issues. Posters will also deal with anomalistic psychology, dream variables, and history of the often complex relationship of these two fields, among other topics. Presenters and Poster authors are academics, scientists and professors from the Instituto de Psicología Paranormal in Argentina, the University of São Paulo in Brazil, the University of Northampton in England, the University of Strasbourg in France, the Institut für Grenzegebiete der Psychologie und Psychohygiene in Germany, the University of Padova in Italy, and the University of West Georgia in the United States, among other locations. Four synchronous 90-minute sessions, with a presentation followed by a Q & A sessions will be presented on Saturday and five such sessions on Sunday in the WizIQ.com Virtual Classroom on each of the two conference days. Ten Poster Presentations will also be uploaded as stand-alone PowerPoints to the WizIQ Course Schedule. Registration is $50 for non-students and $30 for students with a proof of studentship. If you can’t afford the registration but would like to attend, plenty of scholarships are also available. Just ask!”

Conference Logo (purchased from 123rs.com

Conference Logo
(purchased from 123rs.com

 

The conference schedule appears here. The formal (real time) presentations are:

November 1

Parapsychology and Psychology: An Overview

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD & Nancy L. Zingrone, PhD, Rhine Research Center, USA

Nancy L. Zingrone, PhD & Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD

Nancy L. Zingrone, PhD & Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD

Clinical Dimensions of Psychic Experiences

Renaud Evrard, PhD, University of Strasbourg, France

Renaud Evrard

Renaud Evrard

Cognitive and Emotional Empathy in Relation to Five Paranormal/Anomalous Experiences

Alejandro Parra, PhD, Universidad Abierta Interamericana & Instituto de Psicología Paranormal, Argentina

Alejandro Parra

Alejandro Parra

November 2nd

We Are All Psychics, but (Often) We Do Not Know How To

Patrizio Tressoldi, PhD, University of Padova, Italy

Patrizio Tressoldi

Patrizio Tressoldi

ESP and Altered States of Consciousness

Chris Roe, PhD, University of Northampton, England

Chris Roe

Chris Roe

ESP and Synesthesia

Christine Simmonds-Moore, PhD, University of West Georgia

Christine Simmonds-Moore

Christine Simmonds-Moore

There will also be a dozen posters, consisting of Power Point presentations that will be available through the two days of the conference and later. Some of them are:

Gertrude R. Schmeidler (1912-2009): Psychologist and Parapsychologist 

Evidence-Based Dualism and Transpersonal Psychology

Charles T. Tart, PhD

Professor Emeritus, Sofia University, University of California at Davis

Charles T. Tart

Charles T. Tart

Outline of the Counselling Work at the Institute of Frontier Areas of Psychology and Mental Health

Eberhard Bauer, Dipl.-Psych., and Wolfgand  Fach, Dipl.-Psych.

Institut für Grenzgebiete der Psychologie und Psychohygiene, Freiburg, Germany

Eberhard Bauer

Eberhard Bauer

Wolfgang Fach

Wolfgang Fach

Brazilian Mediumship: A Psychosocial Study

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi, PhD

University of Sao Paulo, Brazil

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi

The Academic Consolidation of Anomalistic Psychology in Brazil

Vanessa Corredato, MA, and Wellington Zangari, PhD, University of Sao Paulo

Vanessa Corredato

Vanessa Corredato

Wellington Zangari

Wellington Zangari

Psychology and Psychical Research: The Work of Théodore Flournoy

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi, PhD*, Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD**, Fatima Regina Machado, PhD**, and Wellington Zangari, PhD**

*University of Sao Paulo, **Rhine Research Center, USA

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi

 

Carlos S. Alvarado

Carlos S. Alvarado

Fatima Regina Machado

Fatima Regina Machado

Wellington Zangari

Wellington Zangari

The conference room is open already for those who are registered. You will find there people to chat with and materials to view (the posters, and coming soon presenter biographies and presentation abstracts). These materials will be available indefinitely after the conference, exclusively for registrants, along with the recordings of the presentations.

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Théodore Flournoy

Théodore Flournoy

One of the most interesting early figures in the psychological study of mediumship and other phenomena was Swiss psychologist Théodore Flournoy (1854-1920). In my last published paper, with several colleagues, we reviewed his main psychical research-related work: Carlos S. Alvarado, Everton de Oliveira Maraldi, Fatima Regina Machado, and Wellington Zangari, “Théodore Flournoy’s Contributions to Psychical Research” (Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 2014, 78, 149-168; available from the first author: carlos@theazire.org).

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi

Everton de Oliveira Maraldi

 

Fatima Regina Machado

Fatima Regina Machado

 

Wellington Zangari

Wellington Zangari

Here is the abstract:

“In this paper we review the main contributions of Swiss psychologist Théodore Flournoy (1854–1920) to psychical research. Flournoy always advocated the scientific study of psychic phenomena as an important area that should not be ignored. After a short discussion of Flournoy’s attitudes to psychic phenomena we focus on his main work, his study of Hélène Smith (1861–1929) published in Des Indes à la Planète Mars (1900), in which he summarized communications about previous lives in France and India, as well as those coming from the planet Mars, which Flournoy attributed to subconscious abilities involving imagination and cryptomnesia. In addition, we review his other investigations of mental mediums, observations of physical mediums, and writings about telepathy and precognition. We argue that Flournoy’s work with mental mediums made him a significant contributor to the study of the capabilities of the subconscious mind, work that was important to the theoretical concerns of both dynamic psychology and psychical research.”

Flournoy Des Indes a la Planete Mars

Flournoy From India to the Planet Mars Title Page

The paper is divided in the following sections: Biographical Sketch, Early Studies in Psychology, The Psychical Research Context, General Attitude to Psychic Phenomena, Study of and Speculations about Hélène Smith, Other Investigations of Mental Mediumship, Observations of Physical Mediums, and Telepathy and Precognition.

Frederic W.H. Myers

Frederic W.H. Myers

While many in psychology and in other fields rejected psychic phenomena, others studied the topic seriously and defended their reality, as seen in the early work of the Society for Psychical Research, including figures such as Frederic W.H. Myers. We wrote in the paper “that Flournoy was similar to Myers in that he argued that some phenomena, particularly mediumship, had conventional explanations based on the workings of the subconscious mind, but that other manifestations required the acceptance of some supernormal principle. There were, of course, important differences between the two men’s thinking. But for our purpose we want to argue that Flournoy’s work illustrates the interaction of psychical research and the study of the subconscious mind in early psychology.”

Article by Flournoy about Myers in the Archives de Psychologie, 1902

Article by Flournoy about Myers in the Archives de Psychologie, 1903

Flournoy’s best known work was his analysis of the mediumship of Hélène Smith, the pseudonym of Catherine Élise Müller (1861-1929), who presented “subliminal romances” about life on planet Mars, and previous lives in India and France. As was to be expected, the descriptions of Mars, and the creation of a Martian language, attracted much attention at the time, and even to our days.

Martian Script

Martian Script

Martian Buildings

Martian Buildings

As we discussed Flournoy interpreted the phenomena mainly as the result of the medium’s subconscious creations: “To Flournoy the subconscious activity was the expression of a natural and spontaneous creativity . . . Interestingly, Flournoy stated . . . that he believed he had ‘perceived a little telekinesis and telepathy’ in some of his séances with Smith . . . But he did not document this in detail and basically presented it as an impression.”

Italian physical medium Eusapia Palladino

Italian physical medium Eusapia Palladino

We had sections in the paper about Flournoy’s writings about telepathy and precognition and his observations of physical mediums. Among the latter were Eusapia Palladino and Stanislawa Tomczyk, who convinced him of the reality of their phenomena.

Polish medium Stanislawa Tomczyk

Polish medium Stanislawa Tomczyk

Among other topics we summarized a little known survey of mediums conducted by Flournoy begun in 1898. We wrote:

“He sent questions to members of the Société d’Études Psychiques de Geneva and received 72 replies, 23 from men and 49 from women. Among other topics, those questions were about when and under what circumstances the respondent realized that he or she possessed mediumistic faculties, how these experiences changed over time, observations of mediumistic faculties in other people and in the medium’s family, and the influence of physical, medical or moral conditions upon mediumship. In this study, unique for its time, Flournoy studied the medium from a psychological and social perspective instead of an exclusively parapsychological one.”

Interestingly, Flournoy accepted that the content of some mediumistic communications were veridical, but he believed that their presentation as coming from spirits was a dramatization of the medium’s subconscious mind.

Flournoy Esprits Mediums

English Translation of Esprits et Médiums

English Translation of Esprits et Médiums

Henri F. Ellenberger

Henri F. Ellenberger

We conclude stating that Flournoy’s main contributions to psychical research were conceptual, namely showing the dramatic capabilities of the subconscious mind. “Flournoy’s psychological contributions have been acknowledged by some historians of psychology. The influential historian of ideas concerning the unconscious mind, Henri F. Ellenberger, referred to Flournoy’s study of Hélène Smith as a ‘great step forward for dynamic psychiatry’ . . .  Shamdasani . . . has noted that Flournoy’s ideas about the subconscious mind were an alternative to Freud’s theories in the early twentieth century, one that emphasized the more creative and constructive aspects of the unconscious.”

Sonu Shamdasani

Sonu Shamdasani

Flournoy was “an important representative both of early psychology and of psychical research, and particularly of the interactions of the two fields.” His work  “is a reminder that some ideas and studies of early psychology took place in the context of interest in and research on psychic phenomena.”

Flournoy and William James (seated)

Flournoy and William James (seated)

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

I present here an interview with Dr. Richard Broughton, whom I met in the 1980s in a convention of the Parapsychological Association and whom I got to know better when I moved to Durham, North Carolina, in 1986. Richard, who has a PhD in Psychology from the University of Edinburgh, then worked at the Institute for Parapsychology in Durham (now the Rhine Research Center), where he was Director between 1995–2000.

Richard S. Broughton

Richard S. Broughton

Richard now lives in the UK, where he is retired from the University of Northampton. He is currently the President of the Society for Psychical Research  and has been twice President of the Parapsychological Association . Richard has made many contributions to parapsychology, as seen in the bibliography below. One of them is a popular book, Parapsychology: The Controversial Science (1991).

Broughton Parapsychology

Interview Questions

How did you get interested in parapsychology?

As an undergraduate in the late 1960s I had an interest in what might be called the “higher states of consciousness” that were associated with oriental religions and philosophies, but the philosophical approach didn’t really suit me. Subsequently, while doing my alternative service at a school in Egypt, I read an article by Lawrence LeShan that was a precursor to his book The Medium, the Mystic, and the Physicist. In that I learned that scientists were studying the phenomena that interested me, and that got me excited. In the school library I managed to find a bit more information about parapsychology, and by the time my wife and I returned to the States I had decided that I would return to university and make a career of trying to understand how these phenomena worked.

What are your main interests in the field and how have you contributed to its development?

I started in the field interested in how the brain is involved in ‘transducing’ (for lack of a better term) the anomalous information that we call ESP into useful information or action. Now, at the other end of my career, I am still interested in that same question. The difference is that in the early days I focused on the presumed cognitive aspects of ESP in the brain whereas now I think the answer to how ESP works will be found in the emotional system. Along the way I have become convinced that to help in this quest to understand how ESP works we need to understand its evolutionary role in human development. Another interest of mine—not by choice because it was forced upon me at the start of my career—is the “source of psi” problem in experimental research, or more specifically, experimenter effect. I dare say that my entire career as an experimental researcher has relentlessly demonstrated (to me at least) that the experimenter remains the most potent variable in eliciting evidence of psi (or failing to do so, as is more frequently, though not always, the case for me). Quite frankly, apart from arguing my case from time to time—be it the importance of the emotional system, the role of evolution in the development of ESP, or the time bomb that is experimenter effect—I think my contribution to the field has been less than what I would have hoped for because of a relatively consistent inability to deliver convincing experimental results. That is certainly not for lack of trying, and, of course, I have my suspicions, if not convictions, as to where the problem lies. In the end, perhaps my main contribution to the field has been to undertake key supporting roles in its various institutions—the Parapsychological Association, the Rhine Center when I was there, and now the Society for Psychical Research.

Why do you think that parapsychology is important?

I think parapsychology is important in the same way all sciences are important—they help us understand how the world (including ourselves) works. Amongst the sciences parapsychology’s unique role has been to focus on that class of puzzling phenomena that seems to reveal new relationships between the human mind and the world of advanced physics. I certainly don’t think its importance lies in the hope that parapsychology will end up vindicating a view that consciousness is non-material or that it survives death, because I don’t expect that to happen.

In your view, what are the main problems in parapsychology today as a scientific field?

We all know the litany of usual suspects from which the answer to this question can be drawn, but my gut, my intuition, tells me that the root of most of the problems lies in the fact that there is something fundamental about psi that we just aren’t getting. For all the clever experiments we devise, and for all the hard work that goes into the various meta-analyses, we simply are no closer than we ever were to having predictable results. Yes, we are dealing with weak effects, but even with a weak effect we should be able to trust a power analysis for a replication and we can’t. That same gut feeling tells me that this may be allied to the whatever is at the root of psi-based experimenter effect that I mentioned earlier, but what ever it is, we are not seeing it.

Can you mention some of your current projects?

Well, as you might suspect from my comments, I am taking a break from experimental projects for the present. I have some writing to do, particularly with regard to elaborating my evolutionary model of psi, but quite frankly, having retired from teaching duties at the university I am enjoying having the time to engage in more tractable pursuits, not all of which are academic. And I am enjoying shepherding the Society for Psychical Research (of which I am the president) through some interesting decision-making and project development that will benefit the whole field (we hope).

Selected Publications

Book

Broughton, R. S. Parapsychology: The Controversial Science, New York: Ballantine, 1991. Translated editions published in Italy, France, The Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Israel.

Conference Proceedings

White, R. A. & Broughton, R. S. (Eds.). (1984) Research in Parapsychology 1983. Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press.

Articles

Broughton, R. S. (2010). An evolutionary perspective on anomalous intuition. Proceedings of the Eighth Bial Foundation Symposium: Aquém e Além do Cérebro: Intuição e Decisão. Porto: Fundação Bial, 61–73.

Broughton, R. S. (2006). Memory, emotion and the receptive psi process. Journal of Parapsychology, 70, 255–274.

Broughton, R. S. (2006). Why do ghosts wear clothes?—Examining the role of memory and emotion in anomalous experiences. European Journal of Parapsychology, 21, 148–165.

Broughton, R. S. (2002). Telepathy: Revisiting its roots. Proceedings of the fourth Bial Foundation Symposium: Aquém e Além do Cérebro: Relações Interpessoais Excepcionai. Porto: Fundação Bial, 131–146.

Alexander, C. H., & Broughton, R. S., (2001). Cerebral hemisphere dominance and ESP performance in the Autoganzfeld. Journal of Parapsychology, 65, 397-416.

Bem, D. J., Palmer, J., and Broughton, R. S. (2001) Updating the ganzfeld database: A victim of its own success. Journal of Parapsychology, 65, 208–218.

Bierman, D. J., Broughton, R. S., & Berger, R. E. (1998) Notes on random target selection: The PRL autoganzfeld target and target set distributions revisited. Journal of Parapsychology, 62, 339–348.

Broughton, R. S. (1993). The new technology: A man and his tools. Journal of Parapsychology, 57, 111-127.

Broughton, R. S. (1993). Taking psi ability seriously. In L. Coly and J.D.S. McMahan (Eds.) Psi Research Methodology: A Re-examination. New York: Parapsychology Foundation, 21-43.

Broughton, R. S. and Perlstrom, J. R. (1992). PK in a competitive computer game: A replication. Journal of Parapsychology, 56, 292-305.

Broughton, R. S., Kanthamani, H., & Khilji, A. (1990). Assessing the PRL Success Model on an Independent Ganzfeld Database. In L. A. Henkel and J. Palmer (Eds.) Research in Parapsychology 1989, Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 32–35.

Broughton, R. S. (1988). “If you want to know how it works, first find out what it’s for” (Presidential address to the Parapsychological Association), In D. H. Weiner and R. L. Morris (Eds.) Research in Parapsychology 1987, Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 187–202.

Burdick, D. S. and Broughton, R. S. (1987). Conditional displacement analyses. Journal of Parapsychology, 51, 117–123.

Broughton, R. S. (1987). Parapsychology on the couch. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 10, 575–576.

Broughton, R. S. (1987). Publication Policy and the Journal of Parapsychology. Journal of Parapsychology. 51, 21–32.

Broughton, R. S. and Perlstrom, J. R. (1986). PK experiments with a competitive computer game. Journal of Parapsychology, 50, 193–211.

Broughton, R. S. (1982). Computer methodology. In B. Shapin and L. Coly (Eds.) Parapsychology and the Experimental Method (pp. 24–36) New York: Parapsychology Foundation.

Broughton, R. S. (1982). The use of computers in psychical research. In I. Grattan-Guinness (Ed.), Psychical Research: A guide to its history, principles and practices. Wellingborough, UK: Aquarian Press.

Broughton, R. S. (1982). Computer methodology: Total control with a human face. Parapsychology Review, 13, 1–6.

Broughton, R. S. (1979). An experiment with the Head of Jut. European Journal of Parapsychology, 2, 337–357.

Broughton, R. S. (1979). Repeatability and experimenter influence: Are subjects really necessary? Parapsychology Review, 10, 11–14.

Broughton, R. S. (1976). Possible brain laterality effects on ESP performance. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 48, 384–399.

Broughton, R. S. (1975). Psi and the two halves of the brain. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research. 47, 133–147.

 

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

This is my 100th post. Where did all that time go?

My purpose here has been to present information about people, events, and publications related to parapsychology. This includes contemporary and historical developments, as well as scientific, scholarly, and various other perspectives. One thing I have particularly enjoyed doing is passing on links and descriptions of resources, such as virtual libraries and sites with links to articles. In addition, I have used the blog to inform all of you about my published articles (for an overview of some of them click here).

My posts have appeared under the following headings, which are arranged by frequency:

Recent Publications (News about articles and books)

People in Parapsychology (Interviews and obituaries)

Digital Resources (Virtual libraries and sites with links),

Conferences and Other Events (News about conventions and lectures)

Education (Resources and issues about education in parapsychology)

Writing History (Conceptual issues in writing about history)

Organizations and Groups (News about groups)

Voices from the Past (Observations and ideas from the old literature)

Phenomena (About specific manifestations)

Here are some examples of postings:

 Education in Parapsychology

 ESP and the Brain Hemispheres–Revisited 

Gustave Geley on Ectoplasm: 1921

Gustave Geley

Gustave Geley

Recent Meta-Analyses of Parapsychological Studies

My Return to the Rhine Research Center

Rhine Research Center Building

Panel Discussion about Parapsychological Research Sponsored by the Rhine Research Center

Distortions of Parapsychological History: I.

Our Psychic Past in Digital Libraries: II. Google Books

In Memory of Eileen Coly (1916-2013)

Eileen Coly

Eileen Coly

Advances in Parapsychological Research, Vol. 9.

Remembering Robert Van de Castle (1927-2014)

Robert van de Castle

Robert van de Castle

The Spiritualist Movement: Articles About Spiritualism and Related Topics

The Paranormal Review and World War I

Poltergeist Theory

Seeing “Animal Magnetism.”

People in Parapsychology: X. Roger Nelson

Roger Nelson

Roger Nelson

Our Psychic Past in Digital Libraries: VI. Hathi Trust Digital Library

Recent Surveys of Psychic Experiences: I.

People in Parapsychology: XIII. Russell Targ

Russell Targ and the intrepid Onyx

Russell Targ and the intrepid Onyx

Early Mesmeric Accounts of Effects on the Growth of Plants.

People in Parapsychology: XIV. Larry Dossey

Larry Dossey

Larry Dossey

Mediumship in Brazil

I also find the blog useful to inform others of my publications. Here are some examples:

Early Examples of Psi from the Living Explanations of Mediumship

Studying Ernesto Bozzano

Ernesto Bozzano

Ernesto Bozzano

Théodore Flournoy and Veridical Hallucinations

Nineteenth-Century French Psychical Research: The Revue Philosophique de la France et de l’Étranger

Revue Philosophique 1876b

Deathbed Visions in the Journal History of Psychiatry.

Speculations about Mediumship, Dissociation and the Subconscious Mind

G. Stanley Hall as a Critic of Psychical Research 

Article About Frederic W.H. Myers.

Frederic W.H. Myers

Frederic W.H. Myers

I plan to continue posting along the same lines and hope to have more author interviews such as the one featured here.

My thanks to all of you who have followed my blogs, and especially to those who have written comments. Thanks are also due to those of you who have taken the time and put much effort in answering my interview questions. I am also grateful to those of you who have posted my blog to various pages and forums, especially to Lori Derr, Judith Gadd, Tom Ruffles, Caroline Watt, and Nancy L. Zingrone. My blog is regularly featured on the SPR Facebook page and in Compelling Evidence for the Afterlife).

Compelling Evidence

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Forever Family Foundation Logo

The Forever Family Foundation  was set to “further the understanding of Afterlife Science through research and education while providing support and healing for people in grief.”

The Foundation is meeting in Durham, NC, for a variety of events between the 5th and the 11th of November (for information click here. Part of these events include the Foundation’s 8th Annual Afterlife Conference between November 8th and 9th (for information about registration, hotel, and other details click here).

The title of the conference is The Science of Survival of Consciousness: Changing World View About the Afterlife. Some of the presenters include:

Jim B. Tucker, MD

Jim Tucker 2

Representing: Division of Perceptual Studies/University of Virginia

Topic: Return to Life: Children’s Memories of Past Lives

Loyd Auerbach, MS

Loyd Auerbach

Representing: Forever Family Foundation

Topic: Never Been Slimed: Recollections of a Real-Life “Ghostbuster”

Sally Rhine Feather, PhD

Sally Rhine Feather

Representing: Rhine Research Center

Topic: Continuing Psi Experiences Suggestive of an Afterlife.

Callum Cooper, MS

Callum Cooper

Representing: Society for Psychical Research  (London)

Topic: Telephone Contact with the Dead and other Unique Methods of After Death Communication

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD

Carlos S. Alvarado 4

Representing: Parapsychological Association

Topic: Seeing the Dead: Early Studies of Deathbed Visions

Nancy Zingrone, PhD

DIGITAL CAMERA

Representing: Parapsychology Foundation

Topic: Is There Anybody In There?

Evidence for Survival from Hauntings and Apparitions Research

Julie Beischel, PhD

julie Beischel 4

Representing: Windbridge Institute for Applied Research in Human Potential

Topic: Among Mediums: Results from 10 Years of Research

 

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Hideyuki Kokubo has been contributing to parapsychology and related areas since the 1980s. He travels around the world presenting his research at various conventions. My contacts with him have been in some of the conventions of the Parapsychological Association.

Hideyuki Kokubo

Hideyuki Kokubo

Hideyuki holds various positions in Japan, among them Research Director of the International Research Institute , and Researcher at the Institute for Informatics of Consciousness (Meiji University). In addition he is the Executive Editor of the Journal of International Society of Life Information Science and the Managing Director of the International Society of Life Information Science, as well as the Director of the Society for Mind Body Science. He also has won several prizes, an example being the 2003 Excellent Paper Prize by the International Society of Life Information Science.

Interview

How did you get interested in parapsychology?

In my childhood, I was a common boy who had interests in many wonderful and amazing things, for example, Kaijuu such as Godzilla, Ultraman, SF, anime, mystery of our universe, theory of relativity, quantum theory, time travel, space travel, ancient miracles such as pyramids, etc.

When I entered Nagoya University, I found there was a student club of paranormal phenomena, especially psi and UFO. I enjoyed parapsychological experiments there. One day, I analyzed data of clairvoyance and recognized a declining curve. I was surprised that this phenomenon was called a decline effect in Rhine and Pratt’s book Parapsychology (Translated by Yasuo Yuasa). I realized that psi could be detected by suitable scientific methods.

What are your main interests in the field and how have you contributed to its development?

I want to develop a good real-time sensor for PK. If I succeed, we will be able to study the details of physical mechanisms of psi.

Recently, I have developed new methods to measure the magnitude of bio-PK power quantitatively. In my original methods, I used pieces of Cucumis sativus (‘white spine type’) cucumber as a bio-sensor for PK. In 2006 I developed a method to measure biophotons from cucumbers. Also, in 2009 I developed a gas measurement method in 2009 and a fluorescence measurement method in 2012.

The main characteristic of my methods are:

1) Use of paired bio-sensors of experiments and controls.

2) Reactions of bio-sensors are measured for a long term (18-24 h) after PK treatment.

3) Use of J value which is an index of the magnitude of controlled PK power. J value is defined as a natural logarithm of the ratio of physical values of experimental and control samples.

4) Weak PK power can be measured.

My collaborators and I can study the details of bio-PK phenomenon from various view points. One of them is a study of the spatial distribution of bio-PK field around a healer. The bio-PK field has a wave-like form which has positive and negative areas. It is not similar to Coulomb’s potential and it can be approximated by a wave equation. It suggests that bio-PK follows physical laws which are not well-known yet. Generally, a wave equation needs several parameters such as amplitude, wave length, density, coefficient of viscosity, reaction force, etc. J value is equal to the amplitude of a wave, but I have not measured “reaction force” nor “coefficient of viscosity” of the bio-PK field. Then there is a new question: “Do RNG and bio-sensors measure the same factor?”

Inventors often ask me to measure the amplitude of artificial “psi” power which is claimed to be generated by their original devices. I have measured them in the same way I measure healing power. Remarkably, some devices show unexplainable results which are similar to the results with healers. Some parapsychologists may hesitate to accept these results. However, I think the material has properties relating to psi and we can study them scientifically.

Recently, I and my collaborators have applied my gas measurement method to an ambitious study. The first article was published in 2013 (Takagi et al, 2013). In the study, a meditator sits on a chair in a fractal pyramid which is made of aluminum pipes (length is about 2 m) and four plastic boards with aluminum Sierpinski gasket patterns. Bio-sensors (cucumber pieces) were set on the top of the pyramid, and we compared two conditions: that there is a meditator or not. The results of the study were significant (p = 3.13 x 10-10, t-test, two tailed). We are now preparing the second paper which suggests the pyramid (material) has an important role in this anomalous phenomenon.

Why do you think that parapsychology is important?

Parapsychology suggests that there are many hidden properties of our universe which have not been recognized by modern science yet. Also, parapsychology inspires us, showing us paths that may lead us to a new stage.

For example, it is often claimed that teleportation phenomena takes place in poltergeist cases. If teleportation is true, it means that we can find its physical mechanisms and develop an innovative technology of transportation. Also, space trips may become possible. It is very interesting and amazing to study teleportation phenomenon. However, at the present day, we do not have enough data, and we should make efforts to obtain more data in laboratories and in the field. I remember the following episodes when I discuss the problems of teleportation,

1) In 1990s, Chinese researchers used a high-speed camera and shot a process that Baosheng Zhang (genius psychic) used his psychic ability and withdrew a paper from a sealed transparent glass bottle. The sequential photographs showed that, at first, Zhang caught a terminal of a string (which was connected to the paper) from outside of the bottle, and then he withdrew it. The paper followed to the string and was withdrawn from the bottle. Apparently, an anomalous small hole seemed to have appeared at an edge of the glass bottle at that moment. Both string and paper kept their original forms even after this phenomenon.

2) Katsumi Okabe and his family (Japanese farmers) lived in Zanja Pytã (Paraguay). They encountered poltergeist phenomena in 1972. This poltergeist seemed to be a haunting, not an RSPK case. Kazunari Akagi, journalist of Paulista Shinbun (Journal Paulista, newspaper, São Paulo, Brazil), and Yasugoro Nakagawa (merchant of materials for agriculture) stayed at Okabe’s house for a short term, and Akagi reported many teleportation phenomena; for example, a large tire of a car, an iron rail, and other things moved from the first floor to the second floor. Nakagawa wanted to know the path along which the things moved, and he connected strings to things which had moved frequently. This test was repeated, but it was not easy to identify the path because the string was usually torn. After many trials, Nakagawa succeeded in obtaining a clue. When a thing moved anomalously from the first floor to the second floor, he checked the string and found that it had been torn in the middle. However, remarkably, the string passed along a gap (a few millimeters) between wood floor boards of the second floor, and was hanging into the lower room. This suggested that the things passed through the gap of the wood floor boards.

3) Randy Taguchi (a writer) interviewed witnesses of UFO phenomena in Japan. One night in the 1990s, a woman saw a UFO which was hovering above her house. The diameter of the UFO seemed to be larger than 10 meters. She was surprised that the UFO passed through a narrow gap between two house buildings but the shape and size of the UFO did not change during the process. It is impossible that the UFO passed through the gap in usual ways which are well-known by us. She wondered about this very much and thought she might be crazy. Researchers may try to discuss such experiences as part of psychology or of modern myths. However, I would like to say that they are experiences of real physical phenomena, although I don’t know whether the UFOs were alien crafts or not.

Of course, these episodes are not confirmed enough even in terms of their possible parapsychological interpretations. However, I am interested in the possibility that our target “teleportation” is not the same as quantum teleportation. Psi phenomena seem to be related to unknown properties of time-space.

In your view, what are the main problems in parapsychology today as a scientific field?

I think one of the problems is the technology used to sense psi. We have obtained considerable data about psychological and social aspects of psi through many studies. But, we don’t have enough data about their physiological and physical mechanisms yet. Therefore, we cannot explain psi well. In order to go to the next stage, we should develop new sensors for psi.

Can you mention some of your current projects?

One of them is a study using a pyramid, which I mentioned above. My collaborator is preparing a paper about this.

Selected Publications

Books

Kokubo H: Introduction to Human Measurements. Tokyo: DTP Publishing Co. Ltd, 2014. [In Japanese]

Kokubo H and Takagi O: Gasu Sokutei-hou no Jissai (How to Gas Measurement Method – Textbook of Seminar. Chiba: International Research Institute, 2010. [in Japanese]

Yamamoto M, Ito M, Machi Y, Kawano K, Higuchi Y and Kokubo H Eds.: Human Potential Science, Chiba: International Society of Life Information Science, 2004 [in Japanese]

Articles

Kokubo H: A questionnaire survey for the digital native generation on their anomalous experiences and trust for other persons. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 32(2), 217-227, 2014.

Minami E, Usui T and Kokubo H: Relationship between age and healing power – A study using a bio-sensor for non-contact healing. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 32(1), 49-55, 2014.

Watanabe M and Kokubo H: Study on macro PK with shape memory alloy and super-elastic alloy -Possibility of non-professional scientists. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 32(1), 16-33, 2014.

Kokubo H, Usui T, Shimahara C, Minami E, Shimizu T, Takagi O, Kawano K and Yamamoto M: Relationship among Non-contact Healing (Bio-PK) Ways and Response Patterns of a Bio-sensor – Competition and Inhibition among Healing Ways of the Chakra-activating Type, DNA-rewriting (Language-leading) Type, and Energy-circulation-improving Type. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 31(2), 161-181, 2013.

Takagi, O, Sakamoto, M, Kokubo, H, et al: Meditator’s non-contact effect on cucumbers. International Journal of Physical Sciences, 8(15), 647-651, 2013.

Kokubo H., Biophysical approach to psi phenomena. Journal of NeuroQuantology, 11(1): 8-15, 2013.

Kokubo H, Usui T, Shimahara C, Minami E, Takagi O, Kawano K and Yamamoto M: Response patterns of a bio-sensor in non-contact healing: Analysis by gas and fluorescence measurement methods. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 31(1): 52-60, 2013.

Kokubo H, Koyama S, Takagi O, Yamamoto M and Kawano K: Bio-PK detectivity of fluorescence measurement method: Early spring test. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 30(2): 208-224, 2012.

Kokubo H and Yamamoto M: Fluorescence measurement method for non-contact healing power. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 30(1): 41-48, 2012.

Kokubo H, Takagi O and Nemoto Y: Spatial distribution of healing power – Biophysical approach to bio-PK around a human body. Gesellschaft fur Anomalistik Studie des Monats, 2011.

Kokubo H, Takagi O and Nemoto Y: Biophysical measurements of bio-field around a human body. Proceedings of 7th Psi meeting: Psi Research and Anomalistic Psychology, 193-199, 2011.

Kokubo H: Research senses for parapsychological phenomena: Viewpoint across mind, body and universe. Japanese Journal of Transpersonal Psychology/Psychiatry, 11(1): 15-27, 2011. [In Japanese with an English abstract]

Kokubo H, Takagi O, Koyama S and Nemoto Y: Potential distribution of healing power around a human body – Biophysical approach using gas measurement method. Journal of Mind-Body Science, 20(1): 43-54, 2011. [In Japanese with an English abstract]

Kokubo H, Takagi O, Koyama S and Yamamoto M: Discussion of an approximated equation for spatial distribution of controlled healing power around a human body. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 29(1): 23-46, 2011.

Kokubo H, Takagi O, Koyama S and Yamamoto M: Spatial distribution of potential of controlled healing power – Exploratory measurement using cucumber as a bio-sensor. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 28(2):236-249, 2010.

Kokubo H, Takagi O and Koyama S: Application of a gas measurement method – Measurement of ki fields and non-contact healing. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 28(1): 95-112, 2010.

Kokubo H and Yamamoto M: Wave Length and Photon Emission from Cucumber – Effects of 70GHz extremely high frequency (EHF) and non-contact healing. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 27(1): 78-89, 2009.

Kokubo H and Yamamoto M: Controlled healing power and ways of non-contact healing. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 27(1): 90-105, 2009.

Kokubo H, Takagi O and Yamamoto M: Development of a gas measurement method with cucumber as a bio-sensor. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 27(2): 200-213, 2009.

Kokubo H, Yamamoto M, Usui T and Yoichi H: Brain blood flow during psychokinesis tasks – Biophysical and psychophysiological study on a psychic. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 26, 223-246, 2008.

Kokubo H, Yamamoto M and Kawano K: Magnetic stimuli for pieces of cucumber – Quantitative measurement using biophotons. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 26, 213-222, 2008.

Kokubo H and Yamamoto M: Research on brain activity during psychokinesis task. Proceedings of 4th Psi Meeting, 66-80, 2008.

Da Silva FE, Kokubo H, Facion JR, Hein J, Potoni L, Paul LSE, Schiling S, Mora W, Ganz NM and Da Silva MJ: Distant healing intention to autistic patients: An exploratory study. Proceedings of 4th Psi Meeting, 27-37, 2008.

Kokubo H: Qigong, Paranormal phenomenon, Parapsychology, in Sakamoto H, Kawano H, Isotani T and Ohta S Eds.: Encyclopedia of Semiotics, Tokyo: Kashiwa-Shobou, 2002 [in Japanese]

Kokubo H: Choushinri-gaku – Michi nouryoku no tankyuu (Parapsychology – Research of unknown abilities), in Isozaki M, Onodera T, Miyamoto M and Mori K, Eds. Maindo Supeisu – Kasoku suru Shinri-gaku (Mind Space – Psychology Accelerates), pp.111-124, Kyoto: Nakanishiya Shuppan, 1999 [in Japanese]

Yamamoto M, Hirasawa M, Kokado T, Kokubo H, Yamada T, Taniguchi J, Kawano K and Fukuda N: EEG change in remote perception task using electromagnetic shield cage, Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 17, 191-197, 1999

Kokubo H: Contemporary active research groups in Japan for anomalous phenomena. Japanese Journal of Parapsychology, 3, 19-63, 1998.

Kokubo H, Yamamoto M, Hirasawa M, Sakaida H, Furukawa M, Kawano K, Hirata T and Fukuda N: Development of measuring system for nT-order magnetic field caused by human hands. Journal of International Society of Life Information Science, 16, 134-147, 1998.

Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Visiting Scholar, Rhine Research Center

Dr. Erlendur Haraldsson is Professor Emeritus at the University of Iceland. I first met him in the mid 1980s when he was visiting the Division of Parapsychology (now Division of Perceptual Studies) of the University of Virginia, where I used to work.

Dr. Erlendur Haraldsson

Dr. Erlendur Haraldsson

In addition to the articles listed in the links below, Erlendur has published several books. Some of them are At the Hour of Death (with Karlis Osis), Modern Miracles: Sathya Sai Baba,  and The Departed Among the Living (for more information click here). 

Haraldsson Departed

Erlendur’s page has links to articles about psychic experiences and folk beliefs, apparitions, hallucinations and alleged contacts with the dead, Icelandic mediumsexperiments, Sai Baba and Indian miracle makers, and children who speak of a previous life.

His work in parapsychology has covered many areas: experiments, surveys, individual case studies, the examination of historical cases, and has ranged from documenting the occurrence and features of phenomena to studying their relationship to other things, such as psychological variables. In addition Erlendur has distinguished himself for his study of phenomena relevant to the issue of survival of death: apparitions, mediumship, and reincarnation-type cases. His work has been a valuable contribution, and one that continues to our day.

 

 

 

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