J.J. Lumsden, a UK-based parapsychologist, who did his postgraduate studies at the Edinburgh’s known Koestler Parapsychology Unit has recently published his book about parapsychology, The Hidden Whisper.
The Hidden Whisper is a great introductory book to the different aspects of parapsychology, its concepts, research accomplishments and criticism. The book tells a fictional story of a UK parapsychologist, Dr. Luke Jackson, who while heading to a professional convention in the US, stays for a week at his grandmother’s house in the deserts of southern Arizona. During this week he is asked to investigate an intriguing poltergeist case in the house of one of the local most known families.
The story-line of the investigation is by itself an interesting and thrilling story, written like a good detective book. Its style actually reminded me of Agatha Christie’s books about Hercule Poirot.
The different concepts of parapsychology are intervened in the book by the means of dialog between Luke and other characters. Since the latter are not scientists, the explanations are all on a very basic language, so that any one could understand. These parts are rich with endnotes references.
In fact, the endnotes themselves are perhaps the more important part of the book. There are about 70 page of endnotes, all going deeper into the subjects of parapsychology described in the story. So, to get more insight into the research, its results and criticism, you’ll need to read the endnotes.
The book covers the following subjects in the field of parapsychology:
- ESP (Extra Sensory Perception)
- Skepticism (including the “fundamental”, non-scientific skeptical arguments)
- Spontaneous ESP, different testing methods of ESP and the results of those
- Ganzfeld experiments
- Meta analysis in parapsychology
- Macro and micro Psychokinesis (PK)
- Presentiment research
- Using Random Event Generators in micro PK research,
- Cold reading and other means of pseudo psychics
- Near Death Experiences (NDE)
- Healing, including remote healing
- Out of body experiences (OBE).
J.J. Lumsden wanted to show the required critical thinking of both sides of the parapsychological debate. He wants the skeptics to see the research and not dismiss everything out of hand. Similarly, he doesn’t like people jumping to fast conclusions and attaching a paranormal label to even the most strange events.
To summarize, The Hidden Whisper is both an interesting read and a book to study. The story is captivating and the quality of 70-some pages of endnotes and over 12 pages of references to studies are an invaluable resource to anyone who takes these subjects seriously.
Below is a new press release from Skeptiko / OpenSourceScience. Looks like the research with the Skeptic’s Guide to the Universe is taking form:
Del Mar, CA, September 22, 2008—Do you want to connect with a loved one who has passed away? Skeptiko.com and OpenSourceScience.net are sponsoring a research experiment aimed at determining if psychic mediums can really deliver messages from beyond. And, they’re currently looking for participants. According to OpenSourceScience.net founder, Alex Tsakiris:
There isn’t enough quality research into medium communication. There’s tremendous public interest in the topic, but as far as tightly controlled double-blind experiments, there isn’t much. We’re hoping to find participants interested it connecting with a relative or friend who have passed away.
Those interested in participating are encouraged to send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Skeptiko is the first scientifically oriented Podcast exploring new research in controversial areas of science such as telepathy, psi, parapsychology, near-death-experience, reincarnation, and after-life encounters. Each episode features open, honest debate on new scientific discoveries. The show includes interviews with top research scientists and their critics.
OpenSourceScience.net is the first scientifically oriented website to bring the power of open source methods to the controversial areas of science such as telepathy, psi, medium communication, parapsychology, near-death experiences, and after-life encounters.
Del Mar, CA
I have written earlier about this Mo-Pai neigung master in A new video of John Chang – The Magus of Java. John Chang was first shot on the Ring of Fire documentary and later was featured in the book The Magus of Java: Teachings of an Authentic Taoist Immortal
height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" /> by Kosta Danaos.
Kosta wrote in his book that his was not the only western student and later I posted another video, which is claimed to be of another of his western students, in 2000, performing telekinesis for the 3rd level. The video is of a poor quality, though. You can see it at Nei-kung telekinesis by John Chang’s student video
In his great blog about martial arts, Martial development, which also highlights the story of neigong and master Chang in many of his articles, Chris interviewed one of Chang’s western students. The interviewee is Jim McMillan, who’s been a long time disciple of John Chang, according to him.
Chris asked Jim the following 5 questions:
- How did you first become acquainted with the esoteric practice of neigong?
- It is often said that a traditional master will test an aspirant’s character and resolve, before deciding whether to accept them as a disciple. Did you face any such trials, or were you accepted immediately?
- What preconceived notions about qigong/neigong masters or methods, if any, has your personal experience since proven incorrect?
What sacrifices–time, effort, money, et cetera–are required of a student in the Mo Pai? How do these demands compare to your previous experience in various martial arts schools?
- How has this training affected your physical and emotional health? Has it made your life easier, or harder?
- Many readers are interested in learning more about neikung, but don’t know where to start. Do you have any advice to offer?
To read Jim’s answers, head over to article at Martial Development.
It’s interesting how more and more information turns out about this interesting person.