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Anomalous interactions: BioPK, healing and ANPSI

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Peoc'h, R. (1988) Chicken imprinting and the tychoscope: an ANPSI experiment. ... experiments with human and animal subjects upon a robot moving at random. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Anomalous interactions: BioPK, healing and ANPSI


1
Anomalous interactions Bio-PK, healing and ANPSI
  • Perspectives on Anomalous Experience

2
Clairvoyance
Telepathy
Brain/Mind
Bio-PK/DMILS
Body
Social, relational, cultural context of psi
experiences
3
(No Transcript)
4
Early work on mental influence
  • Mesmer, Gibert and Janets work on action at a
    distance C19th
  • Research on mental influence on dogs by Bechterev
    and Ivanov-Smolensky (1920s)
  • Vasilievs work on effects of mental influence on
    motor actions (1920s 1930s)
  • Flourishing distant mental influence and healing
    research in 1960s and 1970s on (mainly) bacteria,
    plants and (nonhuman) animals.

5
PK with inanimate systems
  • Early attempts (1940s and 1950s) tested subjects
    ability to mentally influence coins or dice
  • Later work (from 1970s) utilised REGs developed
    by Helmut Schmidt
  • REGs are truly random and sensitive targets for
    PK tests
  • Findings suggest strong evidence for PK on
    inanimate systems

6
Bio-PK
  • William Braud developed early work by Vasiliev et
    al to test effects of mental influence on living
    systems
  • Early studies used allobiofeedback using
    electrodermal activity

7
DMILS
  • Braud emphasised the importance of the
    interaction between subject and target Direct
    mental interactions with living systems
  • Activity level of the target system was
    continuously monitored while a distant subject
    attempted to mentally influence the target system
  • Studies investigated subjects influence on
    electrodermal activity, blood pressure, movements
    of fish and gerbils, muscular tremors, haemolysis
    of red blood cells etc
  • Usual protocol involved testing sessions of 20
    minutes with randomly interspersed influence
    and no influence epochs of 30 secs
  • Percentage scores for each epoch were recorded
    and compared against mean chance expectation

8
Influencer
Subject
EDA monitor
Influence epochs signalled to influencer via
headphones Instructed to visualise/intend an
effect on EDA activity During non-influence
epochs instructed not to think about
subject Polygraphs results of subject provided
for feedback
Subject instructed to behave naturally and remain
open to possibility of being influenced Instructed
to gently wish for successful outcome of
experiment Instructed to avoid unnecessary
movements
9
Study design and controls
  • No contact between influencer and influencee
  • Influence periods randomly scheduled
  • Experimenter and influencer blind to scheduling
    of influence periods
  • Scoring of activity was blind or automated

10
Major findings
  • 40 of Brauds EDA studies successful
    (5chance). Mean effect size was .25
  • Ability to mentally influence normally
    distributed in population
  • More labile (but not chaotic) systems more easily
    influence
  • Influence can happen across space and across time
  • Feedback to influencee not always necessary
  • Activity levels of some systems related to
    environmental variables, e.g GMF
  • Psychological variables (eg personality) may be
    important
  • People with greater need influenced more easily

11
Anomalous healing
  • Distinction between anomalous healing events and
    experiences
  • Krippner Achterberg (2004) distinguish between
    changes in unchangeable bodily processes,
    spontaneous remissions and remarkable recoveries
    (NB cultural and social frameworks impact upon
    definitions of healing)
  • Wide range of descriptors/explanations
    non-contact therapeutic touch, psychic surgery,
    faith healing, laying on of hands, intercessory
    prayer

12
Intercessory prayer
  • Byrd (1988) double-blind randomised procedure
    to investigate effects of prayer on health of
    coronary care patients
  • Prayer provided distantly over 10 months
  • to 192 randomly assigned patients (201 patients
    acted as control group)
  • Prayer group showed significantly more recovery
    than controls (plt.0001), less likely to develop
    complications or need antibiotics

13
PK and direct healing
  • Investigations of healing influence on disease in
    animals/humans, e.g. Grads work with Oskar
    Estebany on wound healing in mice and effects of
    healer influence on plant growth
  • Other work found positive effects of healing
    intention on red blood cells, bacteria, EDA
    activity in normal subjects, animals with tumours
    and humans with heart disease

14
Effects of healing on mice…
15
…and on plants (Grad)
Grad also found that plants that were held by a
normal subject (i.e. a non-healer) grew faster
compared to plants held by depressed psychiatric
patients or not held at all (control condition)
16
Theories of mental influence
  • Braud (2003) distinguishes between 3 possible
    models
  • The transmission of some force or energy that
    conveys information from one organism to another.
    However, current theories do not suggest how
    this may happen
  • The reorganisation model, which assumes that
    rather than info being transmitted, the existing
    random info is reorganised in a way that creates
    the desired outcome, such that it appears that a
    force was at work

17
Theories of mental influence
  • In the holonomic or correspondence models, rather
    than info being transmitted or reorganised, all
    information or alternative outcomes already exist
    in an implicate form in the system (like a
    hologram)

18
Interconnected models
  • Modern research across a range of disciplines
    emphasises the interconnectedness of experience
    on both a macro scale (e.g. quantum physical
    models) and a micro scale (e.g.
    psychoneuroimmunology or PNI models of the
    body/mind)
  • Distant mental influence and healing research
    suggests the reality of such holistic models and
    provides evidence that consciousness is not best
    conceptualised as the property of an individual
    brain/mind but rather as an emergent property of
    a system or systems

19
Indigenous models of mind-matter interaction
Pre-modern theories of healing assumed an
interconnected system Early Western (and many
non-Western) accounts of healing did not assume
split between mental and physical
function Traditional healing approaches rooted in
sacred and meaningful social and cultural
networks Assumptions that mind/body distinct and
that influence between individuals is impossible
stems from Western mechanistic and reductionistic
assumptions
20
ANPSI research
  • Attempts to see humans and animals on mental
    continuum, thus ground Para? in biology
  • Psi as natural ability that conferred adaptive
    advantage, e.g. Rex Stanfords PMIR model
  • DMILS also sees psi as basic response of
    biological systems that is not restricted to
    humans

21
Methods in ANPSI work
  • Most impressive evidence from popular accounts of
    spontaneous unusual abilities of animals, e.g.
    animals tracking owners over long distances,
    showing distress at injury/death of owner at a
    distance
  • Field studies on single cases, e.g. Rhines
    investigations of Lady, Sheldrakes work on
    companion animals showing unexplained excitement
    and activity before owner returns home

22
Clever pets
Animals that appear able to telepathically obtain
info from owner and display abilities like
counting, e.g. Lady the mind-reading
horse Animals that perform well in standard ESP
card tests, e.g. Chris the wonder dog
investigated by Wood and Cadoret (1958) Animals
that respond to deliberate mental intentions
given by the owner, e.g. the animal trainer
Durov, investigated by Bechterev in the 1940s,
Rhea Whites investigations of clever dogs
(1964) Sheldrakes work on animals that display
knowledge of owners intentions (intention to
come home, intention to take animal to vets)
23
Experimental ANPSI research
  • Armstrong (1986) argues for a comparative model
    of psi, such that animal consciousness more
    present-based, and so animals better at more
    passive detection psi abilities like homing and
    psi-trailing, while humans better at more
    intentionally directed activities, eg healing and
    PK
  • Morris (1971) argued for the integration of
    biology and para ? and common theories of
    communication
  • Early psi research embraced models of information
    transfer and emphasised experimental protocols

24
Experimental ANPSI research
  • Investigations of animal PK ability to avoid
    unpleasant stimuli (e.g. shocks, cold)
  • Precognition work testing effects of detection of
    future events (e.g. euthanasia) on normal
    behaviour
  • Effects of clairvoyant access to information
    (e.g. location of food, objects) e.g. Osis and
    Foster (1953) with kittens Rhine (1971) with dogs

25
ANPSI conceptual and methodological issues
  • Difficulty of control and replication
  • Sampling bias
  • Individual differences in animal psi ability
  • Decline effects
  • Problem of distinguishing between results due to
    animal psi and those due to experimenter psi
  • Best findings involve close human-animal
    relationship (seen as possible source of noise)

26
The importance of relationship
  • In popular accounts animal-human bonds seen as
    the essential context within which psi functions
  • E.g. accounts of clever animals, Pfungst versus
    Rhines account

27
The importance of relationship
  • In close human-animal relationships,
    interpretation of behavioural signals may be
    shaped by tendency to anthropomorphise
  • But in social species social interactions and
    relationships best likely context for expression
    of psi
  • Need to psi as a function of the relationship,
    and embrace more phenomenological and
    experiential approaches

28
Experimenter effects
  • Osis and Foster (1953) forced choice ESP task
    with kittens, found that kittens handled
    affectionately performed better.
  • Rhine (1971) location of hidden objects by dogs,
    found decline effects attributed to one
    experimenter who was stressed and irritable

29
Experimenter effects
  • Effect of human intention and emotion in those
    experiments using psi-mediated avoidance of
    distasteful stimuli results could be due to the
    experimenter
  • E.g. Schmidt (1974) attributed psi-missing in
    cockroaches in a shock reinforcement task to his
    negative feelings about the creatures

30
Psi within social relationships
  • Sheldrakes work on animals detecting information
    about owners at a distance suggests psi may be a
    function of the human-animal relationship
  • Work by Peoch (1988, 1995) and Green Thorpe
    (1993) investigates whether imprinting ability in
    young animals serves as a basis for psi ability
  • Recent work (e.g. Begston, 2000 Schlitz, 1982
    Snel and van der Sijde, 1990) has explored
    animals as receivers of healing

31
Extending models of psi
  • In experimental work more detached approach to
    animals cultivated, and more mechanistic
    explanations favoured
  • In lay accounts of animal psi more intuitive and
    relational accounts are used
  • Both types of accounts may be shaped by similar
    cultural attitudes to animals and assumptions
    about their cognitive and emotional abilities
  • Need to consider psi as experience emerging out
    of social and cultural context

32
References
  • Armstrong, S. J. (1996) Souls in process a
    theoretical inquiry into animal psi. In M.
    Stoeber H. Meynell (Eds.), Critical Reflections
    on the Paranormal. NY SUNY.
  • Davis, J. (1979) Psi in animals a review of
    laboratory research. Parapsychology Review, 10
    (2), 1-9.
  • Grad, Bernard R. (1965) Some biological effects
    of laying-on of hands A review of experiments
    with animals and plants. Journal of the American
    Society for Psychical Research, 59, 95-127. (Also
    reproduced in Schmeidler, Gertrude (Ed.)
    Parapsychology Its Relation to Physics, Biology,
    Psychology and Psychiatry. Metuchen,
    NJ Scarecrow Press1976).
  • Morris. R. L. (1977) Parapsychology, biology and
    ANPSI. In B. B. Wolman, L. A. Dale, G. R.
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33
  • Grad, Bernard R. (1965) Some biological effects
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    Parapsychology Its Relation to Physics, Biology,
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    NJ Scarecrow Press1976).
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34
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35
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36
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37
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38
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