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by Rainsong

Of all the psionic abilities, telepathy is probably the most widely known and most often practiced, so much so that its existence is regarded as a complicating factor in ESP and remote-viewing experiments: the scientists have to exclude telepathy when trying to prove or disprove clairvoyance. Telepathy, in various forms, shows up in any number of popular science fiction and fantasy books, movies, and television programs: Star Trek, Elfquest, X-Men,...

That's all well and good, you say, but what is it? Reduced to its simplest form, telepathy is the transfer of thoughts, perceptions, ideas, or concepts from one mind to another, without the use of the recognized physical senses. The process may be consciously directed, subconscious, or completely accidental. The 'minds' in question need not be human, or even associated with a physical body: communication with intelligent 'spirits' would frequently qualify as telepathy (although this is outside my experience, and so I can not say how much of such communication qualifies), and telepathic communication with animals is increasingly commonplace.

Empathy, in the psychical sense rather than meaning merely 'sympathy', is the perception of the emotions of another person, human or otherwise, often felt as if the emotions were one's own. It may be a separate category on its own, or it may be considered a kind of telepathy, depending upon whom you ask. Empathic projection is its reverse, causing someone else to feel your emotions, real or contrived.

Surface thoughts are the immediate perceptions and ideas that crowd and jostle around at the front of one's mind. These are "what you're thinking about" at the moment. UnShielded surface thoughts are easily read, often unintentionally, by anyone reasonably nearby...especially if the thoughts are particularly emotional in nature, or if they are so strong as to be 'almost' voiced. "Thinking loudly", or "broadcasting", is the (usually unintended) Sending of a clearly verbal, but unspoken, and/or emotional surface thought. It is most common when the sender is focused on one thought, especially if he or she is angrily 'fuming' about something.

Theories as to exactly how telepathy works are beyond the scope of an article of this size. It would require something more along the lines of a book, and would get into debates concerning Quantum Mechanics, Philosophy, Neurology, and probably Comparative Religion. There has been much study in this field, but, as far as I know, the question of "how it works" has not be resolved with any certainty.

"How to do it", as opposed to "how it works", is a much simpler question, in much the same way that "How do you drive a car?" is a simpler question than "How does the stuff under the bonnet make the car move?"...Unless, of course, you default to, "It just does!" Smile

Stop and just think for a moment. Think about lemons. Consider their lovely yellowness. Thinks about how refreshing a nice, cool glass of lemonade in on a hot summer day, with ice cubes clinking against the glass, and drops of water condensing along the side. Imagine the lemon's sour taste as you bite into one.

"Ya, ya. Whatever," you're probably saying. "When are you going to tell me how to do this?!" Consider the lemon thoughts to be a preliminary exercise. In order to Send a thought deliberately, it is necessary to be able to hold a thought deliberately. Sending an off-hand thought without requiring much concentration at all requires rather a lot of practice with concentration.

"Concentration" doesn't mean that you need to furrow your eyebrows, clench your teeth, and hold your breath, however; just keep your thought in mind without letting other thoughts intrude. This is much easier to do if the thought has more than one dimension. If you are playing "Guess which fruit I'm thinking of" with your buddies, you can think as hard as you can, "Lemon, lemon, lemon, lemon, lemon,..." and so on, but this is actually much more difficult than it sounds. Eventually, the word loses its meaning in your mind, and other thoughts creep in, such as, "I wonder if he's going to guess 'peach' because he knows I like peaches?" and "Hmmm. I wonder if this works?" and "Am I making a complete fool of myself?" Then the thoughts wander into, "What if it doesn't work?" followed almost immediately by, "What if it does!?"..."What if it does and she finds out that I have a crush on her boyfriend?" Before you know it, lemons are the furthest thing from your mind. And if you are not thinking about the word, you certainly are not Sending it.

By contrast, if you sit back and relax, and think about lemons, lemonade, yellowness, sourness, and so on, it is suddenly very easy to keep your mind on the topic at hand. There really isn't much in the way of effort involved. As Yoda put it, "Try not. Do or do not. There is no try."

If you are playing "Guess which fruit I'm thinking of" and your buddies are scattered around the country, rather than around the room, the technique does not change all that much. First of all, pretend that they are in the same room. The farther away you think of them as being, the fainter your signal will be. Remember, psionic energy follows the pattern of your thoughts, so think of them as being easily within range. Next, get their attention. Think about them. Picture their faces in your mind. Look at pictures of them, if you like. You can even make an imaginary telephone call or e-mail message to them. If you want to be really obnoxious, yell to them in you mind. Imagine your own voice yelling at the top of your lungs, and picture yourself banging a gong or pots and pans, and generally making a ruckus. You get the idea. Third, start contemplating the lemon, as we discussed. It doesn't need to be for very long...a few minutes, ten at the most. If you've arranged times ahead of t me by conventional means, so much the better. Let everyone Send and Receive at least once, and preferably several times, and make note of the 'answers' to check yourselves later.

Keep records of your 'games' and make note of what it feels like when you get a right answer, when you are receiving. It will feel different than a guess. If you hear it, it may well sound exactly as if your buddy had spoken. This is the way I perceive it most often, but other people may sense it differently. Use whatever works for you.

Speaking of using "whatever works"...reports I've read from scientific studies indicate that most drugs mess up deliberate telepathic abilities. This includes nicotine, alcohol, and most illicit substances; but excludes caffeine, which appeared to enhance reception in some studies. Therefore, with the possible exceptions of coffee and chocolate, these are good things to avoid for yet another reason. Hypnosis has been used to induce and enhance telepathic activities, but it may simply heighten the concentration needed for any psionic discipline...and it certainly will produce a dependency upon the hypnotist. I expect that you would be better off learning to control this talent while in whatever passes as your normal waking state of consciousness.

Re: interference with other scientific studies (has some stuff about the mind influencing aircraft controls amongst the rather scary tale as a whole...)

Re: the connection with Quantum Mechanics

Re: the influence of drugs on telepathic and clairvoyant abilities (mentions caffeine as something for remote viewers to avoid; also makes mention of the Russians' drug experiments regarding psi)


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Last Modified on May 14 2002