ESP and Mind Reading Precognition or Seeing the Future Part 1
About the psychic phenomenon known as precognition or seeing the future, history and research studies.
Precognition is the seeing of the future by ESP. Its history goes way back beyond the times of the biblical prophets. The dreams that Joseph interpreted were prophetic; they gave warning of what was to come. So did the ancient oracles. The future is an uncertainty fraught with worry, and if there is any chance that man can peer through its curtains he will try to do so. There is much disagreement as to whether the many forms of divination of the future have merit in themselves, or whether they are just ways for the sensitive to focus his mind and get himself into a state wherein his precognitive abilities will work. Most people accept the idea that the crystal ball is such a focus, and that tea leaves and many other devices probably serve the same purpose.
The responsibility of having precognitive ability is very serious. The issuance of a prophecy can cause it to be fulfilled. If someone is told he will die in a year's time, or that a relationship will break up, he may give up his home, stop trying to fight his illness, or abandon the relationship. Yet, though the psychic must be careful of how he words his predictions, he must not, in many instances, remain silent. There were at least 34 precognitions of the tragic Aberfan coal-tip disaster in which 144 people were killed, but no action was taken to avert the tragedy. The sinking of the Titanic and the assassination of President Kennedy were foreseen by many people. Many of those who had experienced precognition did try to give warning. Those who did not speak out now regret it bitterly, wondering whether, had they added their voices to those who did speak, tragedy might have been prevented.
The Central Premonitions Registry (P. O. Box 482, Times Square Station, New York, N.Y. 10036) was set up both to resolve this problem and to research the accuracy of predictions. It does not handle personal forecasts, but only those of general and national interest.
In the laboratory there are many ways of testing for precognition. A subject may be asked to predict the order of a pack of cards after it has been shuffled (but he may use psychokinesis to influence the shuffle so that the cards will fall as he has predicted).
A more interesting format is the so-called "chair test." Before a meeting starts, a chair somewhere in the room is picked at random, and a psychic sensitive is asked to describe the person who will sit in it at the meeting. A scoring system is used to calculate the number of points of correspondence between the circumstances of the person who actually does sit in the chair and the sensitive's prediction.
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