Parapsychology Research in China is on the rise

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Mar 112018
 

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I always thought that countries whose cultures have a long history of accepting psi phenomena have a better chance of conducting effective experiments and promoting scientific research in the field of parapsychology. The reason for my thoughts was that, hopefully, the scientific establishment in these countries is not as a priori averse to these topics as their colleagues in the western universities. I had my hopes that countries like China and India, from which many of these traditions come, will take a deeper, scientific look at the claims of siddhis, Qi, etc. That being said, I also thought that they don’t do it much or at all, either because the political establishment was against it, or because there was no funding or public interest since these abilities were already accepted in the culture and thus didn’t need much research.

Luckily, it seems that at least in China, the research of topics in parapsychology is increasing, and becomes more open. The fantastic site Psi Encyclopedia has an article from last year published by “Professor Yi-Fang Chang, a physicist and experimental parapsychologist at China’s Yumman University.” exactly about this topic: Psi Research in China.

I suggest you read the whole article, as it’s written well and has a lot of information, but here are some quotes from the article that are the highlights, as far as my interests go.

The physicist Leping Zha introduced the systematic study of psi in the People’s Republic of China in the late 1970s. In China, psychokinesis is included in the ‘somatic sciences’ that study exceptional functions of the human body such as qigong. Leping Zha’s historical account of the three phases of China’s modern somatic sciences between 1979-2001 includes reviews of hundreds of claimed successful experiments across the parapsychology spectrum.

The Institute of Somatic Science of Yumman University was founded in 1980, where successful experiments have included the advancing and retarding of a clock by means of mental intention in the absence of any known physical force.

“Professors Deying Chu and Shao Linxiang, biochemists at Beijing University and Zhejiang Normal University respectively, investigated the effects of EQQ (External Qi of Qigong), finding that directed EQQ could kill cultured cancer cells in vitro and inhibit in vivo tumor growth, also that it could relieve symptoms and even effect a complete cure in many illnesses. EQQ has also been found to enhance seed germination and plant growth, increasing crop yields. It has been found that EQQ prepared water can be imprinted with Qi and can inhibit bacterial proliferation, induce cancer cell apoptosis and promote the growth of normal cells.”

“In 2013, the International Chinese Parapsychology Association (ICA), now registered in Hong Kong, was set up to integrate Chinese psi research with other global activity in the field… The Mind-Matter Parapsychology Phenomena and Study Kumming Ltd, registered in Kumming (capital of Yunnan province) has recently been established. These associations can also call upon the expertise of scientists such as Shao Linxiang (Kochi University of Technology), Leping Zha and Dong Shen.”

“During the summer periods of 2012-2015, the Training Group on the Potential of Blind Children, Southern China Branch, in co-operation with the facilities offered by Lady Tang Kai-Ting of Taiwan in Beijing, found that by using a method combining scientific memory and the practice of Qigong over a period of time, many blind children could learn to distinguish different colours by touch on the nose or ear, and even recognize the outlines of simple figures and numbers, thus improving their quality of life.”

“Blind children can be taught to telepathically communicate with each other and have even been taught to get together in a ‘virtual space’ and move objects by virtual PK. Sighted children can be taught to develop their PK abilities to fold strips of paper or break matchsticks held in transparent sealed containers, and even write a few tiny words such as ‘Mother I love you’ and a figure of ‘love’ on a sealed match stick (fig 1) by using a mind controlled ‘virtual pen’.”

“Children can also be taught to develop their psi abilities to achieve ‘psi-calculations’, communicate with spirits and with plants and perceive at a distance (remote viewing). Our research has demonstrated that the potential to develop ESP/PK abilities in both blind and sighted children is universal, independent of nation, religion and belief.”

The article also lists the working theory of Chinese scientists as to how this works, research into earthquake predictions and a summary of scientific publications.

I found some additional information on the topic in an article from 1991 in the American Society for Psychical Research. The article can be downloaded in PDF form from CIA library: https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP96-00792R000300270007-9.pdf . It’s written by Leping Zha (see a quote above) and Tron McConnell. Might be worth a read to learn more on this topic.

Parapsychology in the People's Republic of China

Parapsychology in the People’s Republic of China

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Dean Radin to release a new book on science and magic

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Feb 082018
 

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Dean Radin, Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS), to release a new book, called “Real Magic”.
The book will be released on April 10, 2018. I love how he promoted this on Twitter:

When’s the last time you heard of a book on esoteric magic endorsed by a Nobel Laureate physicist, a president of the American Statistical Association, a program director at the National Science Foundation, etc.? Never? Well, now you have.

On the book’s web site there’s also the following video that covers the background for the book and the main points it discusses.

What I love about Dean Radin is that he’s a serious scientist who’s been researching and writing about the topics related to parapsychology for decades. I always read his books as they come out. You can find more of his books on Amazon.

I’ve already pre-ordered my copy!

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Surviving Death by Leslie Kean – Book Review

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Jan 282018
 

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I recently finished reading Leslie Kean’s second book, “Surviving Death: A Journalist Investigates Evidence for an Afterlife”. It was the first book in a while on this topic of survival of consciousness that I read but certainly far from first.

I bought the book on Amazon for my Kindle Paperwhite reader. I like reading on the Kindle because I can read in bed before going to sleep and it’s easy to highlight passages of text and find them later.

Back to review. The short version is that I found this book to be the most compelling and well-structured book that I’ve ever read on this topic. And even though I’ve read about some of the accounts described in the book, I find that Leslie Kean could gather more information about them and present them in a very clear manner. In fact, she says that some details of cases were only provided for her book. She mentions which ones they are.

The book’s purpose is to consider the existing evidence that a person’s consciousness can survive bodily death. The book is organized into 4 parts, which in a way build one upon the other, or at least they go from the “simpler” to the more “complex”, or hard to understand or to believe, aspects of her research. The author also reports her own experiences related to that, some as part of her research for the book and some not so much.

Some chapters of the book were written by other people, mostly researchers, but the style and flow of the book are kept fantastically despite being written by other people. Good editing.

The four parts of the book delve into the following phenomena:

  1. Reincarnation research. Includes summaries of research by Ian Stevenson and also newer cases in the US. I knew about one of them and not about the other. Both cases are very compelling to suggest that something is going on, and they have good records that decrease the chances of fraud to nil.
  2. NDE research – Probably the topic I knew the most about personally. The is one of the best coverages on this topic. Again, compelling cases are described very well.
  3. Mental and Trance mediumship – This is where research summary and cases are enhanced by author’s own experience. Fantastic reads.
  4. Physical mediumship – The topic that I knew the least about. I always thought that it was a kind of a lost art or all fraud. I was intrigued to learn that physical mediums still exist. This part also includes author’s personal testimony of attending several such séances and a chapter by the medium himself that describes the journey and personal thoughts on scientific research of this phenomena.

The book constantly tries to compare if the phenomena suggest survival of consciousness versus the super-psi theory that posits that all of the knowledge (such as of a medium or a child who remembers past lives) comes from their own super-sensory apparatus.

To me personally, the super-psi theory seems to suggest too much psi power to individuals, while there’s no real evidence of such strong powers in individuals. To me, it’s a more complicated explanation than the one that posits survival of consciousness. Still, as the book says, it’s impossible to prove the super-psi theory wrong because it puts no limit on the paranormal abilities of people.

If you’re in any way interested in learning more about the possibility of an afterlife, this book, “Surviving Death: A Journalist Investigates Evidence for an Afterlife”, is a must have, in my opinion.

Highly recommended.

This book makes me want to read Leslie Kean’s previous book, her investigation on the subject of UFOs: UFOs: Generals, Pilots, and Government Officials Go on the Record.

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