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Show Me the Evidence

by Dean Radin

Critics are fond of saying that there is no scientific evidence for psi. They wave their fist in the air and shout, "Show me the evidence!" Then they turn red and have a coughing fit. In less dramatic cases a student might be genuinely curious and open-minded, but unsure where to begin to find reliable evidence about psi. Google knows all and sees all, but it doesn't know how to interpret or evaluate what it knows (at least not yet).

In the past, my response to the "show me" challenge has been to give the titles of a few books to read, point to the bibliographies in those books, and advise the person to do their homework. I still think that this is the best approach for a beginner tackling a complex topic. But given the growing expectation that information on virtually any topic ought to be available online within 60 seconds, traditional methods of scholarship are disappearing fast.

So I've created a SHOW ME page with downloadable articles on psi and psi-related topics, all published in peer-reviewed journals. Most of these papers were published after the year 2000. Most report experimental studies or meta-analyses of classes of experiments. I will continue to add to this page and flesh it out, including links to recent or to especially useful ebooks. This page may eventually become annotated, then multithreaded and hyperlinked, and then morph into a Wiki.
See the evidence »

  • 21 Comments
  • Anonymous Icon

    p1ttst8te@yahoo.com May 04, 2013

    It is a wonderful idea and I look forward to seeing it,

    I wonder, however, how many skeptics will find some rationalization or cop-out to excuse themselves for not looking. How about "The Devil made me see tha!t"

  • Anonymous Icon

    greened May 04, 2013

    Bless you Dean Radin!

    I'm teaching a psi-related workshop at Naropa in two weeks and was just compiling a resource guide for the students when, viola, in beautiful synchronicity, an announcement of your new SHOW ME page appeared in my inbox. You just saved me an extraordinary amount of work!

    All selfish motives aside, this contribution to advancing the evolution of consciousness is enormous. I thank you. The Universe thanks you!

    May the Force be Within You,

    Debra

  • Gary Scott May 04, 2013

    Hello Dean,
    Thank you for your dedication. This page is a great help!!

  • Anonymous Icon

    signalfire May 04, 2013

    Great idea! May I suggest adding the writings of Ingo Swann? They are all available now online since his death. Especially fascinating was "Penetration" and his apparently never finished autobiography.

  • Anonymous Icon

    donsalmon May 04, 2013

    This is a really great idea and absolutely necessary.

    But!

    Along the lines of Dean's point that we're in a time of 60 second sound bites.

    First, even a lot of well meaning people are not going to take the time to analyze the studies that are posted (which doesn't mean this isn't a good idea - just thought i'd repeat that in case someone is skimming this for a 5 second sound bite:>)!!

    Second, even if people who are untrained try to take the time, they will still have difficulty understanding it (which doesn't mean it shouldn't be done!!)

    Third, even qualified people won't necessarily understand it (as 40+ years of Hyman, Alcock, Marks, Wiseman and the rest make all too clear).

    (which doesn't mean it isn't a great thing)

    I think the other thing that needs to be done is to have someone create a website giving an overview - the big picture, and summarizing the studies and show how they fit in that overview. And provide a philosophic understanding of the limitations of materialism. I would recommend Alan Wallace's work as the basis of that, but many other philosophers, contemplatives and scientists need to be part of the site (Michel Bitbol, just to name one excellent example).

    now, who is going to do that?

    Oh, wait, I'm planning to do that some time in late 2014 or in 2015!

    Ok, no need for shameless self-promotion. I won't tell you the proposed name of the site, but I'll let you know when it's up.

    And there will definitely be a Dean Radin page on the site (maybe connected to the yoga sutras, chapter 3, page, and somewhere not too far from the Franklin Merrell Wolff page also!)

  • Anonymous Icon

    donsalmon May 04, 2013

    oh, and if anybody has any suggestions, please write me at donsalmon7@gmail.com

  • Anonymous Icon

    godotova May 04, 2013

    I love you! I just love you!
    Thank you so much!

  • bestearth May 04, 2013

    DR Ian Stevensen's work for data on reincarnation
    also 'Return of the Revolutionaries' by Walter Semkiw M.D,
    The scientists with spiritualized minds make the breakthroughs and are more intelligent. Their spirituality doesn't impair their reason it enhances it.

  • Anonymous Icon

    Susan Cooper May 04, 2013

    Thank you, Dean. We will love sending people to this wonderful and much needed accomplishment!

  • Anonymous Icon

    donsalmon May 05, 2013

    Hi again,

    I'd like to thank the several people who wrote me regarding the letter I wrote above. Since there seems to be some interest in this idea, I thought I'd flesh it out some more, and again, invite anyone with suggestions to write me. As I said, I'm not going to have time for a year or two to begin (we're working on www.remember-to-breathe.org, a site taking Dan Siegel's "Interpersonal neurobiology" and applying it to a wide variety of concerns, from physical and mental health to the development of healthy lifestyles).

    Here is an overview of what the site challenging scientism will be about (tentative URL:" Beyond the matrix now"

    1. Experiential. This I think is the most important, but unfortunately, probably the hardest to do on a website. We'd have lots of meditative/contemplative exercises, some illustrated with music and video. we'd use the kinds of illusions that you often find in Buddhist and Vedantic texts, combined with experiments from the psychological study of perception, to get people to question what the phenomenologists call "the natural attitude" - the subconscious assumption that there is a dead, non sentient, wholly self-existing material object "beneath" or 'behind" the percepts that arise in experience. We'd probably have mindfulness, dream yoga, and other contemplative practices as well.

    2. Theoretical. This is second in importance, though for many skeptics, if they could listen, it may be the most important: the idea that science - as currently practiced - is metaphysically neutral (here I disagree with Dean who has said he would accept materialism if there was an explanation of psi that was in harmony with it - or perhaps he was using a "skillful means" to deflect debunkers; I don't know). When I was working on the section of my yoga psychology book challenging materialism, the best comment I ever got was from Mark Woodhouse, former chair of the philosophy dept of the University of Georgia. He said DON'T argue against materialism; simply take a neutral attitude: given the data that scientists have, there is (at least) an equally good argument for materialism, idealism, dualism, panpsychism, etc - but the final decision cannot (as kant clearly showed us) be made by reason (it can be made by a faculty beyond reason, which Franklin Merrell Wolff called "interoception" but we won't go into that too much on this site; we'll reserve that for the next one, about 7 or 8 years away from now:>))

    (continued)

  • Anonymous Icon

    donsalmon May 05, 2013

    (continued from previous post)

    3. Evidence. As I mentioned above, we'd probably do this quite differently from the way Dean has proposed. And again, I think what he is doing is absolutely necessary, particularly for the scientists who are willing to study the research. But many knowledgable and not entirely skeptical scientists won't or can't take the time, and most other people simply won't know how to read a study, particularly in terms of making their way through the methodology and discussion of statistics. I would take Chris Carter's trilogy (on psychic phenomena, NDEs and the afterlife) as the model of a way of presenting evidence to a large audience in an intellectually and scientifically impeccable format).

    As far as sources, Alan Wallace would come first - his theoretical overview and suggestions for integrating science and contemplative insights is the best I've ever seen. We'd have a separate section of the site for hsi work and probably have summaries of at least half a dozen of his books. For theory, we'd also use Paul Brunton's work, Corrigan's "introduction to awareness", van der leeuw's "Conquest of Illusion", and one of the most profound, Iain McGilchrist's "The Master and His Emissary." McGilchrist's work spans the theoretical and experiential. He makes clear how the overemphasis on what he calls "left-mode" thought is one of the main sources of materialist/physicalist thinking. There could be many exercises designed to help people understand the different attentional styles that lead toward or away from materialistic views.

    Finally, for data, we would use Irreducible Mind as an excellent resource, combined with Jim Carpenter's First Sight theory of psi. Combining those with Alan Wallace's views would be an almost unbeatable combination.

    At the core of all this, for us, would be Sri Aurobindo's view of the evolution of consciousness, but we wouldnt' bring that out too much on the 2nd site, as it would be too threatening to most skeptics.

    Well, that's the basic plan for now. i'm sure a lot will change in the next year or two. But I'm welcome to suggestions now - donsalmon7@gmail.com

  • Anonymous Icon

    Savanthar May 05, 2013

    All these so-called skeptics are really nothing more than a bunch of cynics. Hard core evidence doesn't phase them, because they are cynical about anything to do with psychic phenomena.

    They call themselves skeptics, but their true colors always reveal something more cynical as far as I'm concerned.

    From the dictionary: Cynic : a faultfinding captious critic; especially : one who believes that human conduct is motivated wholly by self-interest

    Everyone's a critic. Keep up the good work IONs and don't take the stupid critics too seriously. In spite of their lame cycnial claims, not everyone who deals with psychic phenomena is lying, or deluded.

    Keep them honest.

  • Anonymous Icon

    AquarianPhysics.com May 06, 2013

    Trusting Dean Radin is a good place to start when looking for some honest truth in science. By my scientific measurements, Dean Radin repeatedly tests as providing only true, accurate and honest information and facts, to the best of his knowledge and ability! So again if you want someone to trust on a scientific matter outside of yourself, then Dean Radin is an exceptional start. But learning to scientifically measure the truth of any statement or claim is simply an even better way! Trust But Verify!

    Trust But Verify, exactly what is honest truth for yourself, using long tested scientific experimental methods! You feel and experience being stronger when you are given truth. When someone does not tell the truth to you, does it ever make you stronger...NO! Things that are honest truth, like Dean about PSI science, strengthen you. Things that are healthy to you, strengthen you. Conversely, people or things that are not truthful or healthy, weaken you. This all is Simple Human Physics and common sense! This is also the exact personally felt and experienced truth of Muscle Testing!

    Muscle Testing was scientifically founded in Applied Kinesiology; and, Muscle Testing is currently used in many thoroughly proven scientific and medical fields. Scientific and medical fields including Consciousness Study, Dentistry, Physical Therapy, Chiropractic, Behavioral Disorders and water well or mineral Dowsing, to name a few. What exactly do you think water well Dowsing is, if not simply Muscle Testing! Why do you think you are stronger within the true love of your family or other place of honest balance; and, why do you think you are not as healthy when outside places of truth and honesty! Truth and falsehood Simply live within your very own muscles, as strength and weakness; but, You Know That!

    Trust But Verify! Do not believe to a word that I have written above; that is, do not believe to any thing I say, until it is felt and experienced as being truth within yourself! And do not believe what anyone claims until after it is know to be honest truth, as felt and experienced within your very own muscles and body at that moment, and over the test of time. Muscle Testing can repeatedly measure the truth-strength-health or falsehood-weakness-disease of any word, sentence, paragraph or concept. Scientific Muscle Testing provides the ability for anyone to test the truth-strength or falsehood-weakness of almost anything; and, Scientific Muscle Testing does so by double-blinded, repeatable measurements that are easy to learn. Trust But Verify!

    More on Muscle Testing for truth-strength-health; as well as, a brief description of how to start Muscle Testing for yourself and your family right now, can be found within Aquarian Physics.

    Don't believe me; Trust But Verify!

  • Anonymous Icon

    Sky Walker May 07, 2013

    Nice.. About time.. Sharing it up in Facebook and Twitter

  • Dean Radin, PhD May 07, 2013

    Glad you are enjoying the new page!

  • Anonymous Icon

    walter May 08, 2013

    Obviously I am no expert, but after reading the first half of Alcock, 2003, I was struck by a few things:

    1. Alcock claims that because psi has no set-in-stone list of phenomena that define psi as a scientific field, it limits the effectiveness and believability of psi research. Yet Alcock then goes on to critique and argue against psi. He's having it both ways. To him, the undefined nature of psi is a problem when arguing for it, but not when arguing against it. If he doesn't know what psi is, how can he effectively refute it?

    2. Alcock says that subatomic physics experiments do not "depend on the researcher operating the linear accelerator at the time" as an argument against the "psi-experimenter effect". But what if this effect does indeed exist? If it does exist, then it is not a tautology, it is just the way it is. This is exactly why more research is needed. It seems as if Alcock feels psi research should be abandoned because it hasn't been completely figured out yet. Well, let's just jump ship on all fields of science then, because we haven't solved a single one of those either yet.

    3. Alcock asserts that parapsychologists "have never been able to produce a successful experiment that neutral scientists, with the appropriate skill, knowledge, and equipment, can replicate..", yet in Chris Carter's 2010 paper in which he thoroughly dismantles Wiseman, Carter shows that Wiseman's results mirrored those of Rupert Sheldrake in the "dogs know when owners are coming home" experiments. This tells me that Alcock believes Wiseman's claim that his results of the replication were not significant. I wonder if Alcock still feels this way after reading the Carter rebuttal.

    4. Alcock claims advocacy is a problem. Why is that? I was part of a research team investigating nutritional strategies to reduce breast cancer risk and you bet your sweet bippy everyone of us was hoping for results that would advance the science. Scientists don't just pull hypotheses out of thin air, they are thought-out, well-reasoned ideas that are put to the test and every scientist wants their hypothesis to be confirmed or show evidence in support at the very least. And any good scientist knows that negative results can sometimes lead to significant findings down the road. This advocacy issue comes down to trust. Yes, a researcher may want a certain outcome, but if they have integrity, then advocacy plays no role in the final reporting of results. "Innocent until proven guilty" also applies in science, so any notions of fraud or questionable data massaging need to be shelved until hard evidence is discovered to support such notions.

    I am glad critics such as Alcock exist, they do serve an important function. But the scent of bias coming off his paper is so strong that I have a hard time believing in his self-proclaimed neutrality.

  • matthewx78 Jun 03, 2013

    Thank you So Much Dean!

  • Anonymous Icon

    Crystalsage Jul 25, 2013

    Just been watching this series... having been through a similar Near Death Experience and a Kundalini awakening episode??? where my experience of the world as we know it changed.. much / or should I say most, of what she speaks of resonates quite well with me and my experiences. It has also explained much of what I didn't understand... what I thought was 'scatteredness' spiritual ADD was really 'Cluster cognitions/experiencing' of reality. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nekDNlbcDGQ

  • Anonymous Icon

    Crystalsage Jul 25, 2013

    Interesting how she " Kelli" mentions that it can take about 7 years for the after effects of this 'awakening' after the spiritual experience fully maturates... Have they done any research about changes to mitochondria, or monitored the changes in mitochondria or gene expression after people's alleged 'near death' or other 'spiritual awakening' experience?

  • Nina Jul 25, 2013

    Thank you, Dean! I have been looking for such a list of articles for quite some time now, and am really excited to go through it.

  • Anonymous Icon

    Skepthink Aug 19, 2013

    I have followed Dean's line of thinking since the "Bleep" and his commentary. Glad to see this focus on the scientific method.

    Precious little dialog here, though. How I would love to see someone like Michael Schirmer (Skeptic Society) on board with all this.

    I saw a comment on another blog that puts it best:

    "psychic ability will always be unproven until someone (a) identifies the area of the brain that is responsible for this ability and (b) identifies the medium through which psychic powers are transmitted from the sender to the target."

    We are at such an early stage. Do we even know this is possible?

    It's tempting to believe what we want to believe (= open season for skeptics). So important to stick to process and shy from conjecture.

    Attempts to change lead into gold were the best possible science in its day. How could they forsee discoveries to follow?

    In the meantime, the psi experiences will persist. And, as today, we'll be left to life in awe and wonder.

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