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Some people say they are “psychic”, but what do they mean? Etiquette encompasses a diverse mix of talents and abilities, and there are many ways to fake them.

Telepathy

Telepathy, also known as “mind reading,” is listening to other people’s thoughts. The term telepathy sounds too close to telepathy, which is why people often use the term “empaths” for people who pick up on the emotions of others. Someone skilled at reading non-verbal cues in facial expression and body language may seem like a mind reader to people who miss these tiny muscle contractions, which can last only a fraction of a second. Interestingly, these “mind readers” may not consciously know how they receive this information, so they may actually believe that they have psychic talents. A variant of this is “psychometry”: reading “vibrations” or other impressions of objects. Again, most of the true information can come from people who observe and react to the statements of the “psychic.”

Remote viewing and clairvoyance

Contrary to popular usage, the term “clairvoyant” does not mean all forms of psychic ability or the ability to predict the future. More correctly, seeing distant objects can be classified as ESP (extrasensory perception), second sight or a “sixth sense”, because the information does not come from the five senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. The easiest way to fake this is with a hint partner. For example, a theatrical act may have the blindfolded “seer” on stage. The partner will move through the audience and hold an object from one of the spectators. The partner then uses keywords that contain keywords for each type of article. “Oh, seer, tell me what object of this woman I have in my clutches!” “Woman” and “claws” can be a code for “woman bag”. If the gender is different, then the object could be a man’s wallet.

Astral projection

Astral projection describes out-of-body experiences in which the person travels to another place on the planet or to the “spiritual world.” Again, the scammer may provide information to the audience of an accomplice.

Precognition

You will know that the person is not pretending to be able to see the future after winning the lottery several times. Most of the people who claim to have this ability are based on very general predictions, for example, “A man with dark hair will play an important role in his life next year.” This phenomenon is also subject to what psychologists call “confirmation bias”: people remember the ones that “come true” but forget the many other predictions the person made that did not happen. Again, the person may believe that he really has this ability; You do not recognize that you are reading the person’s reactions to your more general predictions to make the more specific ones.

Medium

Mediums and spiritists claim to speak to the dead. Charlatans pretend to have information that “only the dead person would know” by playing on their brand’s strong emotions towards the dead person and their desperation for contact. When reading body language while making general observations, “I feel like the letter G is important.”

The brand could exclaim: “Grandma!”

Possession acts as a container for a spirit or other disembodied being. Many people find this easy to fake with a little acting, some shaking and rolling their eyes, and a creepy voice. Consider trying it out the next time you’re in a boring class or business meeting.

Telekinesis

Wouldn’t it be great to move things around without touching them? Telekinesis (sometimes called “psychokinesis”) is one of the best “parlor tricks” for phonies and stage magicians: magnets under a table can make an object move across it; thin wires can lift objects; Mirrors or CGI can create the visual illusion. Come on, you know you tried to “Use the Force” to make things move like a Jedi at least once when you were a kid. A popular trick in the last century was to “bend the spoon”: hold a metal spoon by the handle and make the bowl move out of position without physically touching it (remember seeing that on the Matrix?). The secret in real life is to vigorously rub the thinnest part of the neck of the spoon before holding it; friction heats and weakens the metal, which then buckles under the weight of the top.

Pyrokinesis

Lighting fire, or fire control, also looks impressive in a stage act. Stephen King coined the term “pyrokinesis”, but the phenomenon was first documented in the 19th century, when a man named William Underwood generated fire “with his breath.” Most people think that he had a piece of match hidden in his cheek, which ignited when it came into contact with air.

Psychic healing

Can “laying on of hands” or other use of mental energy stop bleeding, heal wounds, or heal disease? There are examples of “faith healing” in many religious traditions, including the Christian New Testament. A strong placebo effect can occur if the patient believes in the cure. The movie Man on the moon He showed a disturbing example of the kind of deception that someone can perpetuate with a light touch of the hand and a piece of animal liver.

Dowsing

Some people claim to see auras or energy fields that surround living things and obtain information about the emotions or health of the individual from the colors. Again, this information can often be collected by someone with experience in reading body language.

But is it something real?

Despite the obvious ways that people can perpetuate deceptions or tricks, scientific data in the field does not completely rule out psychic abilities. Parapsychology researchers have conducted controlled experiments for nearly a century, and even the US government had a program designed to develop psychic spies, Project Star Gate, which they declassified in the 1990s. The results have not shown conclusively the existence of these abilities, but they were also not clear proof that the abilities no exists. Personally, I’d love to see them verified – the world would be an even more interesting place if people could do some of these things. As Shakespeare wrote, “There are more things in heaven and on earth, Horace, than your philosophy dreams of.”

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