Pages Navigation Menu

Parapsychology articles and news

Medium on reading skeptics

An article of Erin Pavlina, one of the mediums whose blog I like to read, relates to the difference that she feels between reading to skeptics and reading to people who are more open to them. The short version is that reading for skeptics is much harder to her and she can’t see as clearly as for people who are open to readings. Here are some excerpts from her article:

When I read for someone who is skeptical of psychic abilities it’s like asking me to read a book in the dark.  Sure my eyes still work.  Sure I can technically still see.  Yes I still know how to read.  But the light is bad and it’s hard to make out the words… 
Sometimes it’s like being handed a book but every other word is blacked out.  I can kind of piece the information together but the information definitely doesn’t come through that easily.  The reading goes slowly and I end up having to get a lot of clarification.  It’s like trying to watch tv with a faulty antenna; sometimes all you get is static.

Erin argues that this happens because of free will. That people block themselves from the readings, for one of two reasons: either they try to test the psychic or because the proof of psychic abilities would shatter their own belief system, and they’re afraid of this.

She concludes the article with the following:

Skeptics, be skeptical if you want.  Totally your choice.  But if you’re looking for proof of psychic abilities, turn on the light before you hand the psychic your book.

And I wonder, if her experience is true, then could we also project this idea on to other experiments that try to detect psi? I mean, will psi experiments conducted by skeptics be more prone to negative result while the same experiments performed by proponents more likely to succeed?





  1. This post looks great. The content of this post is well written and also positive in their points. Nice post.

  2. Psychology is now showing that people like skeptics can shut down their rationing system in the face of evidence that is contrary to their beliefs.


  3. There is another simple explanation, a skeptic closes the mind and therefore puts a barrier around themselves, whereas a person who is open, leaves themselves wide open and it is easy to read telepathically I have done it many times

  4. I agree with your first commenter. Your mind filters out what you don’t believe to be true so that you literally “don’t see it, or experience it.” As skeptic will not experience what a believer does simply because he has programmed his mind to screen out the information; therefor, he truly doesn’t “physically” receive the same information that a believer does. That’s why when someone says, “I’ll believe it when I see it,” they will most likely not ever “see it!”

  5. A Zen practitioner would say this: if you say the jar is full, you’re right; if you say the jar is empty, you’re right.

    People see things they want to see, so if a skeptic already knows that his experiment is going to fail, then it is going to fail – or should I say, to prove that psychic abilities do not exist.

  6. Absolutely skeptics are more likely to get a negative result. It goes beyond the experimenter effect. It’s called “The Sheep and the Goats Effect”