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.