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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » A matter of time. (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Caleb Strange
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In the 'And I have done a great and terrible thing' thread, David de Leon posted a great causal loop idea. In a similar vein, here are a few strange events in the history of parapsychology, where time seemed bent.

In the book 'Mind over matter' Kit Pedlar(?) tells of a curious micro pk experiment. Basically, the test subject was encouraged to use mind power to speed up the clicks emitted by a random event generator. The study showed some apparent pk effect taking place. Taking this further, the experimenter then recorded these clicks onto tape. One such tape was chosen at random, the rest used as controls, and played (for the first time) to the subject, who had no idea he/she was listening to a cassette. Incredibly, there were more clicks on these 'subject affected' cassettes, than on the others. The amazing conclusion drawn was that some sort of backwards causality was taking place(!) Unfortunately, this experiment has proved, like so many in this field, unrepeatable.

Another case, reported by UK paranormal writer Jenny Randles, involved a woman who had a precognitive dream. In the dream, she was eating a banana when the phone rang. It was her friend, telling her that her boyfriend had been in a road accident. The dreaming woman then started laughing. As this was such a curious dream, the woman rang her friend and told her of the dream. 'I can't understand', she said, 'why I was laughing, when you told me my boyfriend was hurt.' Sometime later, as the woman was eating a banana sandwich, the phone rang. Her friend told her that her boyfriend had been in a traffic accident. Thinking that this was a joke (it wasn't) the woman started laughing. I can't think of the chronological implications of this event, without getting a headache! It's like a koan, and my mind seizes to a halt.

There must be lots of these stories we could use as bizarrists. Any ideas?

Regards,

Caleb Strange.

P.S. Incidentally, Doug has kindly published a time-travel effect of mine, involving a fly in amber, on his bizarremagick. com website. Please support his sterling efforts and visit it, to enjoy a plethora of exclusive material by giants such as Doug, Peter, Christian, Jim and others. And if you've got something you'd like to share, I'm sure Doug would love you to contribute!
-- QCiC --
David de Leon
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Arrgh, this kind of thing makes my head spin! But I love it! It’s quite a challenge, though, to package this kind of thing into something profound and thought provoking that is at the same time graspable and comprehensible.

Here is one more thing to ponder, something that the philosopher Daniel Dennett writes about in his book Brainstorms.

You may have had one of those dreams in which there is a long chain of events that culminates in an event that also coincides with something happening in the real world. For example, you are hunted by the Mafia, who want you dead for some reason, they finally catch up with you and shoot you dead, the shot in the dream coinciding with the bang caused by someone slamming a door in your apartment.

So the shooting in the dream seems to have been triggered by an outside event: unless someone had slammed a door, you wouldn’t have been shot in your dream. OK, so far. But, the dream sequence that led up to the event, for which the event was a congruous ending, must have happened before the door was slammed. [Now sing the theme music to The Twilight Zone.]

What to make of this? Some options are:

• You are precognitive and your brain picks a theme that will fit with an outside sound about to be caused.

• You dream the dream instantaneously at the very point at which you wake up. In other words, there is an external sound that triggers the whole dream sequence including its end. You just think the dream has been going on before the external trigger caused you to dream it.

• This only happens when there is an external event that fits with the dream you are having. If you hadn’t been dreaming about gangsters, say, then you wouldn’t have dreamt that you were shot. And if the door in your apartment hadn’t been slammed, the gangsters wouldn’t have caught up with you.
MisterE21
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The logical portion of my brain picks option B, but that may just be a subtle example of social programming as I think I've heard that particular explanation many times. Smile

Obviously, option A presents us with the most options as bizzarre performers (although option C has some possibilities), specifically what comes to mind is this...what is it, in the human condition, that forces are minds to manifest it's precognitive abilities in such a minor and, in a way, pointless display?

Perhaps, part of our mind understands that we are not yet evolved enough to understand, comprehend, harness and responsibly use such abilities?

As opposed to simply using the story of the dream as proof of psychic abilities, I wonder what it would be like to frame the performance as positive proof regarding why are psychic abilities are generally relegated to the subconcious. Energy out of control, unbelievable damage...

I dunno...just a thought. Smile
Your EFFECT is only as good as its AFFECT.
Necromancer
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There is also the as-yet-unexpressed Option D: you would have dreamed exactly the same thing, regardless of whether there had been an outside event or not , and it's merely coincidence that the two aligned. (Although an amazing and startling coincidence, to be sure.)

Now, let's apply this phenomenon to performance: one could have a participant close her eyes, and walk her through a guided visualization which culminates in a choice of outcomes. When the participant mentally makes her choice (but doesn't express it), the performer can make a sound that coincides with that choice, as a precognitive revelation; e.g., the ring of a bell, the "moo" of a cow toy, etcetera. This could be considerably more startling to the participant involved than a mere written prediction, no?
Creator of The Xpert (20 PAGES of reviews!) and the Hands-Off Multiple ESP System ("Quality and design far exceed any ESP cards on the market"-Genii), both at Penguin.
Caleb Strange
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We assume that external stimuli, as we perceive them in our brain, occur simultaneously with them in reality. Maybe the brain can 'store' such stimuli, so the sound is put, unheard, to one side? This stimulates the subject of the dream, which occurs quickly, and then the sound can be heard as happening simulataneously with the dream shot. This is option E. Perhaps another time this occurs is when you think a whole sequence of thoughts IN BETWEEN two words spoken by another person. The brain seems to move incredibly quickly in these condensed moments. Perhaps it only appears to do so. You're busy with the thought, store what's said, and play it back a tad later.

Option F. Every moment, we assume that we have a past. Actually, what do we concretely experience of this past, in this present moment? Only, one could argue, the memory of it. Perhaps, there is no dream. The door slams, and instantly we create a false, but complete, memory of a dream. It is indistinguishable, in quality and texture, from the memory of a real dream.

Neil, that is a fantastic idea! You're not only reading the thought, but, with a bit of observation, WHEN it actually happens. And theatrically, because we've all had these dream experiences, we can understand the logic of your effect. This could also be presented as spontaneous spectator pk. YOU don't ring the bell or shake the tambourine. It just 'happens', as the spectator thinks 'tambourine'. This kind of picks up on MisterE21's idea of psychic powers being wild and dangerous, so we surpress them, and lock them up in the subconscious. They could leak out in Neil's effect, and when the particpant thinks 'door slam', lo and behold, a door slams extremely loudy. Spooky.

By the way, re option F:

If all we know of the past is its memory, how do we know that we've ever existed beyond this present moment? And if all we know of the future is what we suppose and imagine in the present moment, then how do we know we HAVE such a thing as a 'future'?

Pleasant dreams,

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
David de Leon
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That’s a great idea Neil and really worth exploring! Love to hear more suggestions along this line!

The external event that coincides with the spectator’s thought needn’t be as overt as a door being slammed (but that is certainly one very interesting option), you could also go for something that takes the person a while to notice, the most obvious being a relevant piece of music playing in the background.
Caleb Strange
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Imagine an audience member thinking of a particular time/person, and suddenly they SMELL their memory. Poets have ever reminded us that nothing undams the flood of memory better than an evocative smell. One could work Neil's effect like that.

Also, I'm guessing, but I'd bet certain smells have intimate meanings for most of us. Perhaps there's a method in there somewhere. I'll post some ideas in 'Inner Thoughts'.

Regards,

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
MisterE21
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argh...the thought processes! What is this, now, Option G? let's walk a bit on a ledge now....(actually, this was sort of mentioned previously...)

Perhaps, with the obvious exception of previously set alarm clocks and the like, the physical manifestation of noise which "clicks" in the dream, would not have happened had you not been dreaming it?

This, I think, has the most potential regarding the unintentional unleashing of uncontrollable psychic phenomena on the world. Dreaming of an earthquake, a picture falls from the wall; dreaming of a fire, the temperature in the room skyrockets; etc.

At that point, I suppose, the discussion would jump to the subtle manner of influencing thoughts towards such events...and THAT probably takes place in the dang inside forum...only 40,000 more posts and I'll be there! Yeah!

Anyway...I think the most startling manner of any such "dream/thought induced" effect would have to be something out of the ordinary. The picture falls off the wall...neat; the temperature shoots up...nifty. If a spectator were to be daydreaming of a jungle and, upon turning around, suddenly see exotic plants; sitting in a wealthy home, the spectator dreams of poverty and a group of homeless-looking people suddenly wander into the room, asking for handouts. It helps set up the impossibility of the situation...These effects are FAR beyond my current capabilities, but it's something to think about.

::grin::

Spence
Your EFFECT is only as good as its AFFECT.
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