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mastermindreader
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V.I.P.
Seattle, WA
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Quote:
On Dec 2, 2014, David Fillary wrote:


Do people in this forum agree with the spiritualists of previous centuries who used various methods to make the spirits of the dead come into a dark room? I really don't see the difference in claims. What about Peter Popoff, who knew information about people via God? Exactly the same effect as mind reading.


But not the same result or intent. Mentalism, regardless of the claims made, is a form of entertainment. Fraudulent spirit mediums induced others to rely, to the financial and personal detriment, upon false claims.
funsway
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old things in new ways - new things in old ways
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Bob, I again commend you for keeping this horse in the race (Mentalism is a form of entertainment) while others seem bent on running the horse to ground where they can beat the carcass repeatedly, "hide" beneath the shadowy cover, scatter the bones to the fore-winds or claim the steed was actually a mule in sheep's clothing (to mix a couple of metaphors).

but, there remains the question of what then to call a person who uses "similar techniques" for other purposes:

to educate, to gather the audience attention in ancient bardic fashion, to provide contrast for a legitimate soothing process, to unmask a fraud, etc. (not to include psychic or spiritualism or alien claims)

in each of these (and other) cases an observer might apply the term Mentalist to what they experience. What does one call themselves in conversation with noted Mentalist of your definition?

Is there any consensus as to what a lay person considers to be Mentalism? Does this vary as to culture?

Does any one else care?
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

eBooks at https://www.lybrary.com/ken-muller-m-579928.html questions at ken@eversway.com
Sean Giles
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Quote:
On Dec 2, 2014, ALEXANDRE wrote:
Falty logic, Martin. Just because the guy publishes methods doesn't mean he can't really do it. Just because someone enjoys the art of magic and mentalism doesn't mean they can't actually use their intuitive abilities in some interesting way. I don't know, just saying.



I would say that it's faulty logic to assume it's real just because you can't discern a method, not the other way around. To believe it is real you would first have to make an unproven assumption that mind reading is possible.
On the other hand, no assumption has to be made if we determine a method at play. The fact that Pete sells his material and states that he can't read minds backs that up. That's not faulty logic, it's critical thinking.
ALEXANDRE
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Hi Sean. You don't know all of Peter Turner's "methods" ... your post above presumes that he can't actually read someone's mind. How do you know? Just curious. Is it because you believe no such thing is possible? I have not heard him state that he cannot read minds, in fact he goes around demonstrating it all the time, of course I could be wrong, maybe he's made that statement, maybe he's written it clearly somewhere, maybe he has a clear disclaimer before he performs that he is not in any way "real". I enjoy believing the guy may be some kind of witch.

What bugs me about this "art" is that some choose to label every mentalist or psychic entertainer (including themselves) as someone who does "tricks" or if you prefer "clever deception". I don't believe that's the case and neither should many of us, and that perception should certainly not become common knowledge with audiences out there. Unfortunately some are so afraid or ashamed or angry towards anything paranormal or metaphysical that many amongst us are constantly trying to destroy what for audiences is a good part of the mystery and the entertainment. Fortunately, even though some try, and try very hard, plenty of audience members continue to choose to believe, and so do I! I'm certain that's a big part of the fun regarding what most of us do, and I believe performers in general must respect their audiences and avoid being responsible for taking part of their fun down a notch.
IAIN
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I don't do tricks, I don't think there's any evidence to support a lot of the paranormal and supernatural claims made by people outside of the entertainment field either...i find the nlp/psychological angle to have many flaws too...

I like doing my own thing...

I do think though, that if you present it as real, and its not clear that its for entertainment, then I personally think that can be problematic...
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Martin Pulman
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You are free to claim to be psychic if you wish. I don't think anyone said otherwise.

But if you do so in an entertainment context you make yourself fair game for debunkers and skeptics like Randi.

If you start offering potentially life changing advice to people you have crossed a very serious ethical line as far as I'm concerned -and you should be open to a lawsuit if anyone follows your advice and suffers as a consequence.
Michael Daniels
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Isle of Man
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, Martin Pulman wrote:
You are free to claim to be psychic if you wish. I don't think anyone said otherwise.

But if you do so in an entertainment context you make yourself fair game for debunkers and skeptics like Randi.

If you start offering potentially life changing advice to people you have crossed a very serious ethical line as far as I'm concerned -and you should be open to a lawsuit if anyone follows your advice and suffers as a consequence.


And if you claim to be psychic in certain countries, the penalties can be dire indeed.

Mike
Randwill
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, ALEXANDRE wrote:

I enjoy believing the guy may be some kind of witch.

...plenty of audience members continue to choose to believe, and so do I!


Many people desperately want certain things to be true. These desires should not be confused with reality. Though, as we see here, they often are.
IAIN
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Eternal Order
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, ALEXANDRE wrote:
Unfortunately some are so afraid or ashamed or angry towards anything paranormal or metaphysical that many amongst us are constantly trying to destroy what for audiences is a good part of the mystery and the entertainment.


for me, for a fair while, I was far more towards the metaphysical side, the more traditional psychic entertainment side of things...but for me, part of the beauty of mentalism is that we are allowed to explore and express ourselves personally via mentalism...and part of that means letting go of some of the older traditional presentational ploys (if we want to)...to move away from it, to try something different...whatever it is, fail or succeed - it almost doesn't matter...

the important part is the self exploration and the attempt to express ourselves in an interesting and unique way...

so if that means, dropping the old school explanations - then we should maybe celebrate that attempt...

too often both groups of traditional mindreaders/psychic entertainers, vs the psychologically driven performers fight and pull each other's views apart...i've taken part in some too (not pointing fingers or pendulums)...

and that's a shame...

i think people have justifiable worries and concerns about certain performers and how they do it, some worries are unfounded though...and often seen through a Hitchens-esque vitriol that they can't quite pull off...

life isn't 100% one way or another...neither are belief structures and systems...often, these debates deal in absolutes only...

if you think zero harm ever comes to people who visit people who claim to be able to contact the dead and pass on messages (as an example), then you are wrong (there's evidence to prove that frauds exist) - just as there's evidenec to show that people who claim to be able to contact the dead and pass on messages are there to try and help and genuinely believe in their gift and want nothing but good things for those that visits...so neither "side" will ever change the other...lets move on...

i think what people want others to consider, is if they might contribute to a belief that may become negative, that might drive someone in a bad situation to take an extra step something that may or may not be bad news for them...just in case...

just like some people think mentalism can somehow change someone's life, or that readings should be used as therapy...for me, both views are dangerous, involve ego, and miss the point of what mentalism and readings should be...and this is from someone who does readings...
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Sean Giles
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, ALEXANDRE wrote:
Hi Sean. You don't know all of Peter Turner's "methods" ... your post above presumes that he can't actually read someone's mind. How do you know? Just curious. Is it because you believe no such thing is possible? I have not heard him state that he cannot read minds, in fact he goes around demonstrating it all the time, of course I could be wrong, maybe he's made that statement, maybe he's written it clearly somewhere, maybe he has a clear disclaimer before he performs that he is not in any way "real". I enjoy believing the guy may be some kind of witch.

What bugs me about this "art" is that some choose to label every mentalist or psychic entertainer (including themselves) as someone who does "tricks" or if you prefer "clever deception". I don't believe that's the case and neither should many of us, and that perception should certainly not become common knowledge with audiences out there. Unfortunately some are so afraid or ashamed or angry towards anything paranormal or metaphysical that many amongst us are constantly trying to destroy what for audiences is a good part of the mystery and the entertainment. Fortunately, even though some try, and try very hard, plenty of audience members continue to choose to believe, and so do I! I'm certain that's a big part of the fun regarding what most of us do, and I believe performers in general must respect their audiences and avoid being responsible for taking part of their fun down a notch.


He's fooled you. He's good, that's what he does. He's very good, as I found out when I was fortunate enough to hang out with him. He told me the name of my childhood friend without me saying a word. Have you listened to him lecture? Pete is very clear on what he does but it's a testament to his ability that you question its reality. Are there any other magicians or mentalists that you think are doing it for real?
IAIN
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I don't believe he thinks pete is real for one minute...for some reason, its part of the argument some people put up to try and prove a point...its a pointless discussion ultimately (sadly) - in part because of things like that...
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Martin Pulman
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It is far from a pointless discussion, in my opinion. Our art often intrigues young, impressionable minds and it would be irresponsible to leave a place like this as an open field for practitioners of psychic reading.

I don't even see this as a debate between traditional psychic mentalists and psychological mentalists. Both are just presentational tools. The debate is surely between those who believe psychic powers exist and can be combined with mentalism techniques to deceive people, and those who see mentalism as a performance art that has no business trampling through and trying to influence people's private life decisions.

A bit more "Hitchens-esque vitriol" wouldn't go amiss, I think. One of my great heroes.
IAIN
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We need more degasse tysons, less Hitchens in my opinion...


For me, its more about encouraging people to consider whether what they perform, and how they perform it, which may encourage certain unhealthy beliefs...
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ALEXANDRE
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Some of you guys are hardcore, man, wow, arresting a performer/entertainer for claiming to be psychic, geez, come down to Fort Lauderdale and give it a shot. I was an actor for many many years, I played murderers and didn't get arrested. You guys need to relax a bit ... wow.

Are we still talking about entertainment here? Seriously guys.

And Martin, for me to claim I'm psychic "IN AN ENTERTAINMENT CONTEXT" I make myself fair game to skeptics and debunkers? I hope you're kidding. I completely, utterly, 100% disagree with the notion that an ENTERTAINER claiming whatever they want to claim can be "fair game" to anyone wanting to ruin their business as AN ENTERTAINER simply because they don't like what they're claiming. Sick stuff.

Before I write something I'll regret, I'll just step away now, thanks for the chat.
Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, ALEXANDRE wrote:
And Martin, for me to claim I'm psychic "IN AN ENTERTAINMENT CONTEXT" I make myself fair game to skeptics and debunkers? I hope you're kidding. I completely, utterly, 100% disagree with the notion that an ENTERTAINER claiming whatever they want to claim can be "fair game" to anyone wanting to ruin their business as AN ENTERTAINER simply because they don't like what they're claiming. Sick stuff.

Before I write something I'll regret, I'll just step away now, thanks for the chat.


Why would that make you write something you'd regret?

You don't think Uri Geller opened himself up to be debunked by claiming to be a real psychic in an entertainment context? Obviously he did. If he hadn't claimed to be genuine Randi wouldn't have looked at him twice.
IAIN
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, Martin Pulman wrote:
If he hadn't claimed to be genuine Randi wouldn't have looked at him twice.

weeeeeeeell....i dunno about that...
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Martin Pulman
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Now, now Iain. Behave.
mastermindreader
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Martin-

Geller did not make his claims in an entertainment context. He claimed to be a real psychic and was tested, early on, by scientists. His appearances were in lecture style formats and explicitly presented as real phenomena.

Truth be told, while he was charismatic and interesting, he was hardly an entertainer, and was never referred to as such in his heyday.

His popularity resulted directly, not from his ability to entertain, but because he managed to convince several scientists that he was real and/or that his abilities were worthy of further investigation.

I've always presented myself as a mind reader and don't use disclaimers. Obviously, though, given the venues in which I present my act and the manner in which I present it, it is clearly seen as entertainment. I have never offered to have my claims tested by scientists, nor would I. That, to me, would be crossing the line.

I've never been considered "fair game" for skeptics and, in fact, some of them are my greatest fans.
Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On Dec 3, 2014, mastermindreader wrote:
Martin-

Geller did not make his claims in an entertainment context. He claimed to be a real psychic and was tested, early on, by scientists. His appearances were in lecture style formats and explicitly presented as real phenomena.

Truth be told, while he was charismatic and interesting, he was hardly an entertainer, and was never referred to as such in his heyday.

His popularity resulted directly, not from his ability to entertain, but because he managed to convince several scientists that he was real and/or that his abilities were worthy of further investigation.

I've always presented myself as a mind reader and don't use disclaimers. Obviously, though, given the venues in which I present my act and the manner in which I present it, it is clearly seen as entertainment. I have never offered to have my claims tested by scientists, nor would I. That, to me, would be crossing the line.

I've never been considered "fair game" for skeptics and, in fact, some of them are my greatest fans.


Bob,

Geller had a stage show that played very much as entertainment. In theatres with an interval etc. That was in addition to his fun and games at Stanford. That what I was referring to.

As far as I'm aware, you have never explicitly claimed to be psychic? If you did, and put on public demonstrations of it in theatres- I think you would immediately attract skeptics and debunkers.

When Derren Brown's show first started in the UK, it was listed under science on the Channel 4 website, presumably as some part of the whole NLP misdirection ploy. Because of that he was exposed in the Daily Telegraph, one of the biggest selling British quality newspapers. Derren quickly started adjusting his claims and Channel 4 removed the show from the science section.

So it isn't only explicit "psychic" claims that can get you into hot water. To protect the art, we should surely be refraining from making claims that attract the attention of skeptics and debunkers? The Telegraph article exposed several of Derren's routines to millions of readers.
IAIN
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Aaaah...Simon Singh...so much to answer for...

^The Smiths lyric reference...

i would have thought derren would be more inclined to gang up on Singh with Dawkins....
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