Thursday, April 8, 2010

Psychics and Mediums are Cold Readers. That is All.

Since there is absolutely no evidence that spirits exist, it seems even less probable that channeling them is possible. I personally believe that most people claiming to be mediums are actually talented cold readers. Cold reading basically involves gaining information from a willing subject from a series of vague, rapid-fire questions or statements and repeating the information back, coercing the subject to believe the information has been divined of some special power. If you pay careful attention though, the willing subject pays attention only to the "hits" or things the cold reader said that the subject believed had personal significance. The other statments are either disregarded, stated to be significant at some other time, or attributed to another subject. Very willing subjects will even confirm the "misses" as significant when, to the critical listener they were completely wrong.

You'll also notice that cold readers gain all their information from the subject themselves. Rather than make bold statements such as "Your grandfather Bill is here with me and would like you to give his police captain's hat to your daughter Jenny", the cold reader will ask questions like "Whos birthday is in July" and wait for the subject to search their minds for someone who has a birthday in July. The subject then gives the "psychic" information.

Other times, they simply throw out random information and wait for the subject to validate it for them. "I'm seeing bees. Like honeybees?"

What does this mean? Did the subject or someone they know get stung by a bee? See a bee? Eat Honeynut Cheerios for breakfast?

Maybe the "medium" really is being shown a vision of bees by the echo of a dead person's spirit. Or maybe they lying. Or maybe they really do see bees caused by delusion. I know which one I believe is more likely than the rest.

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