Abstracts from Australian Journal of Parapsychology
Volume 13(1), pp. 9-25
Towards a Replicable Formula for Significant I Ching Outcomes
rense lange & james houran
Abstract: To replicate and extend Houran and Lange’s (2012) I Ching study, we investigated whether stronger psi differences occur for experimenters and participants with higher variance on the perceptual-personality variables of Transliminality and Paranormal Belief (New Age Philosophy). We formed four Participant/Experimenter groups (N = 15 pairs each) based on scores for both Transliminality andParanormal Belief: High-Participant/High-Experimenter; High-Participant/Low-Experimenter; Low-Participant/High-Experimenter, and Low-Participant/Low-Experimenter. Working with their designated experimenters, participants selected 16 of 64 hexagram-descriptor pairs (with corresponding hexagram), based on their emotional or cognitive states of mind. Three coins were thrown six times to generate a hexagram. A “hit” was observed when 1 of the 16 hexagrams matched the generated hexagram (thus, PMCE = .25). The overall hit rate on the variable ‘First Hexagrams’ was 34 out of 60 (i.e., 56.7%), which exceeds chance (p < .001). Of the four groups, the hit rate on First Hexagrams was highest for the High-High condition (13 hits out of 20 [65%], p < .001). However, the observed hit rates for First Hexagram in the other three conditions occurred essentially at chance levels. Statistically significant main effects for Participants and for Experimenters were also found, although both effects are moderated by a powerful Participant × Experimenter interaction effect. The hit rate of the High/High condition was significantly higher compared to the Low/Low, Low/High, and High/Low combinations, which are indistinguishable among themselves.
Volume 13(1), pp. 27-35
A Free-Response ESP Test in Two Hypnotic Susceptibility Groups: A Pilot Study
Alejandro parra & juan carlos argibay
Abstract: We conducted two trials of a free-response ESP test. The aim was to determine if two groups, ‘low’- and ‘high’-scorers on a measure of hypnotic susceptibility, would score differently on a psi-hitting task. We used the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility which assesses the hypnotisability of subjects when tested in groups. The sample (N = 101 psi-believing participants; 69 females and 32 males) was split into ‘High HS’ (n = 20) and ‘Low HS’ groups (n = 81) based on HS scores. There was a significant difference between the two groups on Hypnotic Susceptibility and psi scores (i.e., number of hits), t(99) = 2.31, p = .012.
Volume 13(1), pp. 37-56
Psychological Phenomena in Dead People: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Murdered People and Its Consequences to Public Health
WASNEY DE ALMEIDA FERREIRA
Abstract: The aims of this paper are to narrate and analyze some psychological phenomena that I have perceived in dead people, including evidence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in murdered people. The methodology adopted was “projection of consciousness” (i.e., a non-ordinary state of consciousness), which allowed me to observe, interact, and interview dead people directly as a social psychologist. This investigation was based on Cartesian skepticism, which allowed me a more critical analysis of my experiences during projection of consciousness. There is strong evidence that a dead person: (i) continues living, thinking, behaving after death as if he/she still has his/her body because consciousness continues in an embodied state as ‘postmortem embodied experiences’; (ii) may not realize for a considerable time that he/she is already dead since consciousness continues to be embodied after death (i.e., ‘postmortem perturbation’—the duration of this perturbation can vary from person to person, in principle according to the type of death, and the level of conformation), and (iii) does not like to talk, remember, and/or explain things related to his/her own death because there is evidence that many events related to death are repressed in his/her unconscious (‘postmortem cognitive repression’). In addition, there is evidence that dying can be very traumatic to consciousness, especially to the murdered, and PTSD may even develop.
Volume 13(1), pp. 57-61
Can We Really Talk to Dead People? Comment on Ferreira (2013)
GEORGE VAN DOORN
Volume 13(1), pp. 63-66
Experience and Interpretation: Comment on Ferreira (2013)
Volume 13(1), pp. 67-70
Observations of ‘Psychological Phenomena in Dead People’: Comment on Ferreira (2013)
Volume 13(1), pp. 71-75
Descriptions of the Astral Plane: Comment on Ferreira (2013)
ANTHONY L. JINKS
Volume 13(1), pp. 77-81
Review of ‘Psychological Phenomena in Dead People’: Comment on Ferreira (2013)
ALEXANDER DE FOE
Volume 13(1), pp. 83-84
Challenging Evidence: Comment on Ferreira (2013)
Volume 13(1), pp. 85-92
Reply to Van Doorn (2013), Mitchell (2013), Dubai (2013), Jinks (2013), De Foe (2013), and Jenkins (2013)
WASNEY DE ALMEIDA FERREIRA.
Volume 13(2), pp. 111-131
Paranormal Effects and Behavioural Characteristics of Participants in a Forced-Choice Psi Task: Ertel’s Ball Selection Test under Scrutiny
lance storm, suitbert ertel, & adam j. rock
Abstract: In a previous study (Storm, Ertel, & Rock, 2013), we demonstrated that Ertel’s (2005b,c) Ball Selection Test (a.k.a. the Ball Test) can be used to test Reactance Theory (Brehm & Brehm, 1981), and the Sheep-Goat Effect (SGE; the tendency for believers [‘sheep’] to psi-hit and non-believers [‘goats’] to psi-miss). The Ball Test is a forced-choice psi task involving the blind selection of numbered ping-pong balls after numbers are called by the participant (a hit is a match between a ‘called’ number and a ‘selected’ ball number). According to Reactance Theory, when an individual’s freedom is threatened through some form of coercion, we may expect reactance, which is “a motivational state aimed at restoring the threatened freedom” (Silvia, 2005, p. 277). Reactance may explain the SGE. In that study (N = 82), we found a significant forced-choice hit rate of 21.06% where PMCE= 20% ( p = .002). Participants were randomly assigned to a controlcondition (n = 42) or treatment (n = 40) condition requiring them to read a statement that induced reactance. We found a significant reactance effect, and a significant SGE. In the present study, we sought answers to some crucial questions concerning the ball test’s validity, including possible displacement effects, and possible biases in number-calling and selection-behaviour. We found that participants did avoid calling numbers if they had just called them or just selected them from the bag. We found no evidence of hits being mere artifacts caused by sensory leakage or mnemonic aids..
Volume 13(2), pp. 133-167
The Survey of Scientifically Unaccepted Beliefs: A New Measure of Paranormal and Related Beliefs
harvey j. irwin & anthony d. g. marks
Abstract: This paper reports the psychometric development of a new measure of paranormal and related beliefs. Based on a constructive review of the limitations of current self-report questionnaires several criteria were formulated for development of the new measure. One of the key criteria was that items had to meet an explicit definition of scientifically unaccepted beliefs, thereby allowing inclusion in the new measure of a broad range of paranormal beliefs, traditional religious beliefs, urban myths, and similar beliefs currently not accepted by the scientific mainstream. An initial pool of 92 items was administered to 1,180 Australian adults to rate in terms of the level of endorsement. The data of 600 of these participants were analysed under Item Response Theory using the Rasch model and WINSTEPS software, yielding a 20-item questionnaire with two dimensions, New Age Beliefs and Traditional Religious Beliefs, that were free from differential item functioning for age and gender and which featured interval-level measurement. Data from the remaining 580 participants were used for the purpose of confirmatory factor analysis; this analysis confirmed the previously identified psychometric structure. A second study using 236 Australian adults demonstrated the new measure possessed generally satisfactory psychometric characteristics, although further investigation of the scale’s discriminant validity and of the convergent validity of the Traditional Religious Beliefs subscale is warranted. The new Survey of Scientifically Unaccepted Beliefs is commended to researchers for its distinctive conceptual perspective, its elegant psychometric structure, and its sophisticated psychometric properties..
Volume 13(2), pp. 169–185
Anomalous Experiences as Transliminal Drama: The Case of Wasney De Almeida Ferreira
Abstract: Social psychologist Wasney de Almeida Ferreira (Ferreira, 2013) recently reported an unusual set of anomalous experiences with the dead that he deliberately induced via an internal attention state. Only one such episode was detailed, and its content and thematic progression compared favourably to the progression of transliminal experiences as documented in the hierarchical (Rasch scale) content of the Revised Transliminality Scale (Lange, Thalbourne, Houran, & Storm, 2000). The findings suggest that Ferreira’s psychical experiences may be dramatic examples of psychological content accessed and released through transliminal processes, a hypothesized mechanism inherent in anomalous experiences regardless of a psychological or parapsychological nature..
Volume 13(2), pp. 187–212
A Phenomenological Examination of Premonition Experiences in Dreams and Waking States: A Survey Study
Abstract: The main aim of the present study was to determine the proportion of people in Argentina who claim to have had various kinds of premonition experiences, and to discover correlations between these experiences and other variables, such as content, topics, symbols, clearness, vividness, emotional variables, and sensory modalities, and whether people could discern normal from paranormal explanations for their premonitions. The sample comprised 218 (50.8%) females and 211 (49.2%) males (Mean Age = 34 years; SD = 13 years), most of whom were students. The Premonition Experiences Questionnaire was used to collect information on spontaneous premonition experiences. The first part of the questionnaire covered “Premonition in dreams”, and the second part covered “Premonition not related to dreams” (i.e., premonitions in waking states). The majority of premonitory dreamers reported that their premonitions were vivid, clear, and emotionally intense. Premonitory dreams were reported to be clearer than usual dreams. More than half the participants who reported premonitions during waking states, reported feeling anxious, but many expressed feelings of happiness and relief. The information obtained in the survey is of value to parapsychology both as a source of sociological information, and possible hypotheses about the nature of the experiences considered.