What is parapsychology?

Para: beside,not normal, unusual;
Psyche: spirit, thinking, immaterial;
Logos: meaning, sense, science, meaningful word;

Parapsychology analyses phenomena which can not be explained by our five senses. Parapsychology is the scientific and scholarly study of certain unusual events associated with human experience.
In spite of what the media often imply, parapsychology is not the study of anything considered weird or bizarre. Nor is parapsychology concerned with astrology, UFOs, searching for Bigfoot, paganism, vampires, alchemy, or witchcraft.

History of Parapsychology

Old Greeks

Oracle in Delphi (Kings asked for best moment to attack the enemies)

Catholic Church

Appearances of Maria and angles; Some were accepted some others quite similar ones were said to be devil’s work. This turned into the burning of the so called "witches".
As we all know, the church never started serious research of PSI - phenomena.

Francis Bacon

He was the first one who was of the opinion that Parapsychology should be investigated. Century
Parapsychology becomes popular because of relevant literature and certain unifactions. Century
Opening of the universities for the new science Parapsychology.

1969: American Association for the Advancement of Science accepted Parapsychology as serious science.

The Parapsychological Association is an elected affiliate of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the largest scientific organization in the world. In contrast, organizations of psychic readers and mentalists are not members of the AAAS because they are entertainers, not scientists.

Basic parapsychological phenomena

Psi: A neutral term for parapsychological phenomena. Psi, psychic, and psychical;

Telepathy: Direct mind - to - mind communication.

Precognition: Also called premonition. Obtaining information about future events, where the information could not be inferred through normal means. Many people report dreams that appear to be precognitive.

Clairvoyance: Sometimes called remote viewing; obtaining information about events at remote locations, beyond the reach of the normal senses.

ESP: Extra - sensory perception; a general term for obtaining information about events beyond the reach of the normal senses. This term subsumes telepathy, clairvoyance, and precognition.

Psychokinesis: Also called PK; direct mental interaction with physical objects, animate or inanimate.

Bio - PK: Direct mental interactions with living systems.

NDE: Near death experience; an experience reported by those who were revived from nearly dying. Often refers to a core experience that includes feelings of peace, OBE, seeing lights and other phenomena.

OBE: Out - of - body experience; the experience of feeling separated from the body, often accompanied by visual perceptions as though from above the body.

Reincarnation: The belief that we live successive lives, with primarily evidence coming from the apparent recollections of previous lives by very small children.

Haunting: Recurrent phenomena reported to occur in particular locations that include apparitions, sounds, movement of objects, and other effects.

Poltergeist: Large - scale PK phenomena often attributed to spirits, but which are now thought to be due to a living person, frequently an adolescent.

The above terms are representative of common usage, but parapsychologists usually define psi phenomena in more neutral or operational terms. This is because labels often carry strong but unstated connotations that can lead to misinterpretations.

For example, telepathy is commonly thought of as mind - reading. However, in practice, and certainly in laboratory research, experiences of telepathy rarely involve perception of actual thoughts, and the experience itself often does not logically require communication between two minds, but can also be "explained" as clairvoyance or precognition. Keep in mind that the names and concepts used to describe psi actually say more about the situations in which the phenomena are observed, than about any fundamental properties of the phenomena themselves. That two events are classified the same does not mean they are actually the same.

Why is parapsychology interesting?

Parapsychology is interesting mainly because of the implications. To list a few examples, psi phenomena suggest:

(a) that what science knows about the nature of universe is incomplete;

(b) that the capabilities and limitations of human potential have been underestimated;

(c) that fundamental assumptions and philosophical beliefs about the separation of mind and body may be incorrect;

(d) that assumptions about the divine nature of "miracles" may have been mistaken.

More and more Physicists tend to be interested in parapsychology because of the implication that we have a gross misunderstanding about space and time and the transmission of energy and information. Biologists are interested because psi implies the existence of additional, unexplained methods of sensing the world.

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