Study shows second sight is for real

Thursday, November 18, 2010

LONDON - Far from being a parlour trick, many of us are blessed with the ability to look into the future or the gift of second sight.

Influencing events before they happen is also within our potential, suggests professor Daryl Bem, physicist and part-time magician-turned-psychologist, who set out to investigate the phenomenon.

Bem, of Cornell University in New York State, US, carried out nine different experiments involving more than 1,000 volunteers. All but one came down on the side of the psychics, according to the journal New Scientist.

The odds against the combined result being down to mere chance or being a statistical fluke are 74 billion to one, said the professor.

He said the science world should open its mind to the possibility of the paranormal, reports the Daily Mail.

In one experiment, students were shown a list of words to memorise. They were later asked to recall as many as they could and finally they were given a random selection of the words to type out.

Not surprisingly, they were better at remembering some words than others. But spookily, these tended to be the words they would later be asked to type, suggesting a future event had affected their ability to remember.

In another experiment, the students were shown an image of two curtains on a computer screen and told one concealed an erotic picture.

The students chose the curtain hiding the naughty picture slightly more often than could be explained away by chance.

Importantly, the position of the picture was randomly allotted by a computer which didn’t make its decision until after the volunteer chose one curtain or the other.

Filed under: Science and Technology

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