When the explorer Magellan was rowed ashore from his ship to land in the Yucatan, the natives were astonished to see him appear apparently out of nowhere. Captain Cook experienced the same phenomenon when mapping the coasts of New Zealand and other islands in the area. The natives were completely unable to see the great sailing ship anchored just off shore. It was out of their experience and therefore beyond their imagination. So they could not see it. It took a lot of work before the shamans could see the ships and pass on the experience to the tribesmen.
This is history. The same thing happens today when scientists embedded in the rational part of their brain cannot see things that don’t fit into their carefully built left brain categories. Intelligence and the ability to see are irrelevant. The natives had fine vision in the jungles and deserts, but they could not see what they could not think.
In 1983 at the University of London, a mathematician/physicist named John Hasted published the results of a study he did in 1981. In this study there were dozens of children with an average age of nine who demonstrated that under certain conditions they could bend simple metal objects without touching them. This is fact.
In 1982 at the Monroe Institute in Virginia a group of twenty-five people aged from five to seventy, were shown by a United States Army Colonel how to bend stainless steel objects by merely stroking them. One of the group was the world famous child development specialist Joseph Chilton Pearce, who wrote and account of it.
The children went first and tied knots in stainless steel spoons, bent the bowls into neat creases, or as one five year old did, corkscrewed his heavy fork from tines to shank as everyone watched. Then the adults did the same. This is fact.
An earlier study by Bryan Josephson, a winner of the Nobel prize in physics reported that when the English boy Matthew Manning was being tested, metal bars twelve feet away from him would bend, and on more than one occasion disappeared completely and reappeared in another room in the laboratory. The boy was all the time connected to an electroencephalograph which showed tremendous activity in the cerebellum and the reptilian part of his brain whenever these things happened. This is fact.
Tests showed that when such experiments were carried out at Melbourne University some people could bend steel bars that were sealed in plastic. The molecular structure of the bent steel was different from that of the previously identical unbent steel. This is fact.
Every year for centuries, in Sri Lanka there has been a fire walking ceremony in honour of the god Kataragama. The recessed pit in the temple courtyard is six feet wide and twenty feet long. The heat is so intense that onlookers can’t stay closer than twenty feet for any length of time, and aluminum bars melt on contact. Hundreds of psychologically prepared people walk it EVERY YEAR. Some pick up the coals and pour them over their heads and bodies. Neither they nor their cotton clothing suffer damage or discomfort. About 3% of the walkers fail and are badly burned or die because their mental attitude was not perfect. When National Geographic did a study of the walk, they used pyrometers from the University of Calcutta, and found that the exterior of the coals was at 1380 degrees Fahrenheit and the interior was 2300 degrees. This is a repeated experiment. Fact.
The highly intelligent and brilliantly qualified people, academically that is, of various Societies for the Investigation of Alleged Paranormal Phenomena are unable to see things like this, just as the natives couldn’t see the ships. They cannot think it can be true, so they cannot see it to be true. They know for sure that there is nothing that they can’t understand with their left brain.
The Great Randi is a member of one such group and he just knows that all fire walking MUST be a trick, and that Uri Geller, who bends spoons, must also be a fake. Randi who is a first rate stage magician figured out a way to produce the same effect by non paranormal means. Very clever and ingenious. As an ex-member of the London Society of Magicians who watched Dai Vernon do equally impossible things close up, I acknowledge his competence. But it does not automatically mean that everyone who bends spoons by stroking them is an accomplished and knowledgeable magician like Randi. Uri Geller was the gentleman whose appearance on TV had children that I taught, destroying the family silver ware when he told them that they could do it too.
He may indeed be a fake as Randi supposes. But the children were nine to ten years old. They weren’t stage magicians with years of experience. They weren’t fakes either. Randi and people in his society seem to be too afraid to consider the possibility of paranormal occurrences.
Trust yourself. Do not doubt your own experience because some PhD can’t share it and is frightened of being out of his or her comfort zone. Denying that such things happen is their only defence against the unthinkable alternative of having to change their mind.
They would not visit a metaphysical bookstore because there would be hundreds of books there about things that many ignorant PhD’s just will never experience. But you could.
Have a paranormal month and let the blind talk to someone else about colors and the deaf talk to someone else about music.