phenom

by Ria Finazzo

"I can do it on a plane; I can do it on a train; I can do it here or there; I can do it anywhere."

Sam-I-Am, Green Eggs and Ham

In 1973, throughout the course of various paranormal experiments on the extrasensory perception abilities of human beings, Ingo Swann and Dr. Hal Puthoff began to redefine the parameters of the word "psychic." They teamed up with highly credible and renowned scientific researchers at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI) in Menlo Park, CA, an organization dedicated to the investigation of human paranormal functioning. Together they proposed, tested, and successfully demonstrated the accuracy of a phenomenon now officially called "Remote Viewing."

Remote Viewing, or RV, can be defined in several ways:

1.) The ability of experienced and inexperienced volunteers to view (by means of mental processes) remote geographical or technical targets such as roads, buildings, and laboratory apparatus.

2.) The ability to correctly perceive and describe detailed information about a remote place, person, or thing--regardless of the normal boundaries of time and space.

3.) The "psychic" ability to gather information about places far removed from the "viewer."

Basically it means locating a person, place, or thing at any point in "time" or space without physically moving.

Confused? Let's start with the basics.

The testing process is relatively simple: the researcher gives the viewer a set of coordinates, and asks the viewer what is located there. The coordinates could be anywhere on or beyond this planet. The viewer relaxes his or her mind and calmly concentrates on the coordinates given. Through the viewer's rough sketches, adjectives relevant to the target, and vague visual pictures, the target is slowly described by the viewer. It comes in bits and pieces at first, but somehow the conscious and unconscious work together to provide a literal picture. (The viewer at some point may request feedback from the researcher to see if he/she is describing something known to be at the site. With positive feedback, the viewer continues to define the targeted area.)

Not only do studies show that the viewer can obtain a layout of the site, but they often explain a "feeling" regarding the kind of activity surrounding an area—possibly the kind of work that is performed there or a series of real events that happened in that place.

The idea of remote viewing or Coordinate Remote Viewing (CRV), however, is not limited to actual identifiable coordinates. A random number can be assigned to an event and the event (e.g., the transportation of goods from one place to another) and related elements (e.g., the contents being transported) can be defined by the remote viewer. For example, a viewer could be asked to determine the mission of a sea-faring craft. His or her results could conclude that the vessel is scheduled to travel from a port off the coast of Florida bound toward Central America and will travel through the Panama Canal. The viewer could identify the cargo the vessel is carrying. This event is not a fixed location, but rather a situation.

As mentioned earlier, Ingo Swann, with the help of Hal Puthoff, pioneered this process. It actually started after Swann got "bored" with telling people what was in an envelope or opaque box, or what card someone was holding. He suggested trying to see things farther away. Initial experiments included Swann telling researchers what the weather was like in faraway places. His accuracy was astounding and served as the basis for a proposal Puthoff wrote to obtain funding for serious RV studies. (Incidentally, in 1970, Swann remotely viewed Jupiter and described the atmosphere as a "ring of debris" around the planet. Scientists scoffed at the ring, but in 1979 a satellite sent to Jupiter recorded the infamous ring of Jupiter.)

Not long after word of these studies at SRI got around, Pat Price, a former police commissioner and vice-mayor of Burbank, CA, approached the Institute. He claimed to have used his "abilities" to find suspects in his work. Puthoff gave Price a set of coordinates pertaining to a building somewhere on the East Coast. His lengthy description started vaguely, from a distance, and ended with the words typed on labels in locked file drawers. In a later test, Price was asked to describe not only the remote location of a researcher, but a picture folded up in the researcher's pocket. He found the site, described it, then went on to the picture folded up in the gentleman's pocket. He described a picture of a moon and stars. He then "incorrectly" stated that there was an ankh-like figure in the picture. When it was handed to Price there was no ankh. The man who was at the site chuckled and pulled a cross out from under his shirt that had been laying underneath his pocket.

Price had been using mental scanning processes on his own for years. He did nightly scans, during which he explored political and military events around the world. Price claimed that his abilities were very ordinary. He and Swann agreed that anyone could do it if they just committed to the process. A Huntington, WV Herald-Dispatch interview from 1974 quotes him saying "...there is nothing specific to do. If a person has convinced himself he can't with certainty, he cannot. If a person is willing even to concede a slight possibility, he can, then that's a point where he starts doing it..." Sadly, Price died in 1975 of a heart attack. His contributions to the field of remote viewing were immense; he served as a catalyst and opened doors to further scientific studies of the "paranormal."

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