Printer Friendly

Perceptions of non-local communication: incidences associated with media consumption and individual differences.

This study examined the frequency with which individuals perceived that they had experienced incidents of a variety of forms of non-local communication (remote viewing, the stared-at sensation, pet-owner connections, precognition, dreams, and prayer). The data were gathered in a random telephone survey of 368 participants. The results indicated that the most frequently reported form of non-local communication was prayer response (90%). Other forms which individuals also reported having experienced were telephone source concurrence (79%), telephone source anticipation (67%), the presence-of-another person sensation (65%), anticipated event premonition (53%), dream premonition (51%), pet cognitive premonition (47%), travel premonition (45%), concurrent emotional experience (34%), post-death communication (29%), and dream concurrence (28%). The frequency of some responses was found to vary by age, gender, race, income, and media consumption. The potential influence of these perceptions on communication behavior is discussed.

Topics such as extrasensory perception (ESP), psychokinesis, and precognition (foretelling the future) have intrigued popular audiences for ages. Academic researchers have delved into such topics with mixed results. More recently, researchers in a variety of fields have tried to standardize such investigations by looking at them as "non-local communication," i.e., communication that occurs without the assistance of any apparent mechanical means. Jahn and Dunne (1987) described the process as more of a "resonance" than a true transmission or exchange of information (p. 42). Proponents argue that non-local communication is a phenomenon that disregards distance and time. It is sometimes labeled anomalous cognition, i.e., the acquisition by mental means alone of information that is blocked from the ordinary senses by shielding, distance, or time. Studies at the Stanford Research Institute (Puthoff, 2001) and the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory (Jahn & Dunne, 1987) suggest that non-local communication occurs over great distances and with no time lapse for the transfer of information.

While some studies have found evidence to support the existence of such events, skeptics offer alternative theories. Jung and Pauli (1955) attributed most perceptions of precognition to synchronicity, i.e., coincidental events that were not related in a causal manner. Shermer (2002) argued that such evidence is an effect of an inherent human need to see patterns and is supported by evidence collected from faulty, pseudo-scientific research. Regardless of the scientific basis, experimental results in the field of physics have triggered a number of studies in psychology and sociology. Most of these studies looked at the frequency of such beliefs and their associations with other personality variables. That research is often justified on the basis that psychologists need to understand the nature of these beliefs to understand the role perceptions about the paranormal have on human behavior. To do so, this study (1) reviewed the principal forms of non-local communication and (2) provided the results of a public opinion survey that reports on the expressed frequency of incidences of non-local communication.

Types of Non-Local Communication

Remote viewing. Remote viewing refers to visual and/or audio connections to remote locations (Brown, 1996). While critics have questioned the methods used to study the process (May, 1998), studies purporting to support such events have been reported by Targ and Puthoff (1977) and by the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory (Jahn & Dunne, 1987), with the former arguing that their studies indicate that humans have the capacity to accurately describe distant locations (Targ & Puthoff, 1977, pp. 130-133). Several parapsychologists have reported experiments which indicate success in some forms of remote viewing in both individual (Targ, 1994; Wiseman & Milton, 1998, 1999) and group (Targ, 2000) situations. Its potential has attracted sufficient interest for the Department of Defense to study it under the Grill Flame Project in 1978 (McMoneagle, 1997). One suggested explanation is that remote viewing is possible through a complex junction of magnetic fields (Koren & Persinger, 2002), an argument that is supported by a study in which the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) of an artist showed spikes of wave activity during sessions of remote viewing (Persinger, et al, 2002). Talbot (1991) hypothesized that "nonlocal quantum interconnectedness" allowed individuals to experience remote viewing by accessing "some kind of 'holographic soup,' or domain, in which all points are infinitely interconnected" (p. 208).

Presence-of-Another Sensation. The feeling that another person is present refers to a fairly common feeling that was first reported by Titchener (1898) and later studied by Coover (1913). It has often been operationalized as "stared-at sensation," i.e., the feeling that an unseen person is staring at the individual (Colwell, Schrader & Sladen, 2000; Schlitz & LaBerge, 1994; Wiseman & Schlitz, 1997). Various researchers have reported successful detection rates for the sensation that range from 37% to 64% (Braud, Shafer & Andrews, 1993a; Coover, 1913; Poortman, 1959). Braud, Shafer, and Andrews (1990) reported significant differences in skin resistance measures among those participants who were observed versus those who were not. Schlitz and Braud (1997) subsequently tested the sensation again, using the television camera methodology, and found detection rates of 34% in one study and 64% in a second round of sessions. In terms of the general population, other surveys have reported that most people have experienced the sensation (Blackmore, 1997), and individuals who are introverted or suffer from social anxiety seem particularly likely to report the sensation (Braud, Shafer & Andrews, 1993b). Subsequently, Schmidt, et al (2004) report a detection rate of 59%. Still, critics argue that these studies are based on psychophysiological measurements of autonomic reactions (e.g., electrodermal activity) that don't adhere to normal psychological standards (Schmidt & Walach, 2000). The sensation, they argue, may merely be a perception.

Pet/Owner Connections. Pets frequently seem to anticipate when their owners return home, a phenomenon that has been reported by 55% of dog owners and 30 percent of cat owners (Brown & Sheldrake, 1998; Sheldrake, Lawlor & Turney, 1998; Sheldrake & Smart, 1997). Some researchers attribute the behavior to acute hearing or other sensory skills possessed by dogs and/or cats. Sheldrake (1999) argued that non-local communication between the pet and the owner is the true source of that connection. He dismissed the argument that the highly sensitive hearing and smelling skills of dogs could account for the connection. Thus he wrote:
   In more than 150 tests with several different dogs [we] found that
   the animals showed their anticipatory behavior long before their
   owners returned home, when the person was still more than five miles
   away. They did so even when their owners set off at randomly
   selected times, and when no one at home knew when they would be
   returning. The dogs also anticipated their owners' arrivals when the
   humans were traveling in unfamiliar vehicles such as taxis (p. 247).


Precognition. Precognition refers to receiving impressions of future events without the use of past events. (Steinkamp, Milton, & Morris, 1998). Studies supporting such connectivity have been reported by such researchers as Rhine (1961), Targ and Puthoff (1977), Jahn and Dunne (1987), Gurzi (1998), and Steinkamp (1999, 2000, 2001). Rhine based her work on participant anticipation of cards drawn randomly from a deck and argued that precognition was the most prevalent form of non-local communication. Gurzi looked at six instances involving predictions about air terrorism in the 1980s. Other studies have looked at the relationship between precognition and personality traits such as locus of control (Groth-Marnat & Pegden, 1998), a line of study which has led to the suggestion that precognition could be used for counseling purposes (Vassy, 1995). A barrier to its use, however, is that acknowledging the possible existence of precognition is not publicly popular. Alcock (1981) noted that there is a tendency to view people who express such an opinion as being cognitively inferior to others, while Roe (1990) notes that many people tend to question the critical thinking ability of people who make such statements. Others have questioned whether such individuals have lower intelligence scores (Killen, Wildman & Wildman, 1974), lower levels of education (Emmons & Sobal, 1981; Messer & Griggs, 1989; Tobacyk, Miller & Jones, 1984), less knowledge of science (Otis & Alcock, 1982), and lower judgment capabilities (Blackmore & Troscianko, 1985). Still, while there seems to be little research support for such criticism of these individuals (Blackmore, 1997; Roe, 1990), the established attitudinal norm may be sufficient to repress acknowledgment of beliefs in a public opinion survey.

Dreams. A number of studies have looked at the psychological role of dreams (see Moffitt, Kramer, & Hoffman, 1993). Most have examined the interpretative and psychological functions of dreams in terms of such variables as the individual's mood (Kramer, 1993), psychological traits (e.g., Coleman, 1999; Domhoff, 1993; Oberst, 2002), linguistic behaviors (Azzone & Freni, 1998), and as an attempt to cope with unresolved conflicts (Kramer, 1993; Domhoff, 1993). The potential role of dreams as non-local communication has been addressed in terms of subconscious psychodramas and precognition of the future. Robbins and Tanck (1991) identified seven beliefs associated with dreams, two of which fall within these categories. The subconscious psychodrama feature appears among those who believe dreams give expression to wishes (communicating with a deceased relative) that can not be gratified in reality. More specifically, Robbins and Tanck's data indicated that 6 percent of their respondents believed that dreams may act as a channel for messages from other people. Similarly, the precognition feature is apparent among those who believe that dreams could predict the future; 17% of the respondents said they believed that dreams could predict the future.

Talbot (1991) argues that a majority of precognitions--between 60 and 68 percent--occur while individuals are dreaming. Specifically, he argues, individuals will sometimes have a dream one night and awake to find that the dream comes true some time thereafter. Research which attempted to quantify this phenomenon was conducted by Ullman, Krippner, and Vaughan (1973), who found that--over eight consecutive nights--participants would dream about a picture randomly chosen by the experimenter on the following day. Some subjects scored as many as five "hits" over the eight days. Further, dream research has identified a distinctive gender difference in perceptions of dreams. Specifically, women pay more attention to their dreams than do men (Robbins & Tanck, 1988) and women also use more verbs to describe their dreams than do men (Azzone & Freni, 1998). Hence gender is of particular interest in examining dreams as a form of non-local communication.

Prayer. Braden (2000) described prayer as a "choice point" at which the individual brings into existence one of several pre-existing potential realities (p. 100). Prayer is a common religious practice within the United States, and use of prayer is often accompanied by a belief that it can produce miracles (Tonne, 1996), i.e., that prayer can have an impact on reality outside of the individual. Prayer is often used in association with sickness and hospital care (Howard, 1996; Oktavec, 1996; Sanders, et al, 2003), with some research indicating that it can have a positive influence on hospital patients (Astin & Harkness, 2000) and can decrease incidences of violent crime (Dillbeck, 1981; Orme-Johnson, et al, 1988) and terrorism (Orme-Johnson, Dillbeck & Alexander, 2003). Other studies indicate that, like some other beliefs in the paranormal, belief in the power of prayer is associated with personality traits such as internal locus of control (Mitchell, 1989).

This study sought to apply survey methodology to perceptions of non-local communication. Such an approach has been used by other researchers. Surveys have been conducted regarding pet/owner connections in California (Brown & Sheldrake, 1998), London (Sheldrake, Lawlor & Turney, 1998), and Northern England (Sheldrake & Smart, 1997). Similarly, survey methodology has been used to study dreams (Robbins & Tanck, 1991). However, those previous surveys were limited to one particular aspect or type of non-local communication. What has been lacking is a single survey which looks at multiple forms of non-local communication, thus providing a means of making comparative judgments about the relative frequency with which individuals report experiencing different types. Thus, the following research questions were investigated: 1. Which forms of non-local communication are most frequent? 2. Do (a) individual difference variables (such as age, income, ethnic background, and gender) and (b) media consumption variables (newspaper reading behavior, TV viewing habits) affect perceptions of non-local communication experiences? Individual difference variables were included because they have been identified as relevant variables for several non-local topics (Emmons & Sobal, 1981; Messer & Griggs, 1989; Robbins & Tanck, 1991; Tobacyk, Miller & Jones, 1984). Media consumption was tested because of the popularity of such topics in the mass media and the possibility that increased exposure to such messages could influence perceptions of non-local communication.

METHOD

Participants The participants were three hundred sixty-eight (368) residents of Jefferson County, Alabama who were interviewed in a random sample (margin of error, + 5.1%, with a 95% confidence level). Jefferson County encompasses Birmingham and the surrounding communities. It is the largest urban area in Alabama. Participants were selected using the cluster sampling procedure for stratified random samples described by Powell and Cowart (2003). Participants were monitored to maintain gender balance in each region. A total of 1,079 phone calls were made, contact being made with people for 432 of those numbers. Of those, 368 agreed to participate in the survey, a total response rate of 34.1%.

Survey Questionnaire

The survey questionnaire consisted of two parts. The first part consisted of a series of eleven questions about the identified forms of non-local communication. These 11 questions were used to measure the dependent variables in the study. The reliability (Cronbach's alpha) for these items was .64. These 11 dimensions of non-local communication were measured using the following questions:

Dream premonition: Have you ever dreamed about an event that later actually happened?

Dream concurrence: Have you ever had a dream that you later found out was the same dream that somebody else had?

Telephone source anticipation. Have you ever heard the telephone ring and knew who it was before you answered or looked at caller ID?

Telephone source concurrence. Have you ever thought about someone and then have them call you on the phone?

Prayer response. Have you ever had a prayer answered by God? Anticipated event premonition. Have you ever had a premonition about a future event that actually happened?

Pet Cognitive premonition. Have you ever seen a pet who knew its owner was coming home before the person arrived?

Travel premonition. Have you ever had a hunch that you should change your travel plans, and later learn that it was a wise choice?

Post-death communication. Have you ever felt that you've had a message from a deceased friend or family member?

Presence-of-Another Sensation. Have you ever had a distinct feeling that you were not alone, even if there was nobody else there?

Concurrent emotional experience. Have you ever felt that you were physically experiencing an emotion that somebody else was feeling somewhere else?

The second part was a series of questions that served as the independent variables for the study, i.e, questions regarding the respondents' age, income, ethnic background, gender, newspaper reading behaviors and television viewing habits.

The age categories used were: young adults (19-34), adults (35-49), middle age (50-64), and elderly (65 or older). The same was composed of 21% young adults, 30% adults, 24% middle age, and 24% elderly. One percent of the respondents declined to answer this question.

Income was divided into three categories--lower (less than $30,000), middle ($30,000-$60,000, and upper (more than $60,000)--that were appropriate for the area. The sample was composed of 26% lower income, 26% middle income, 33% upper income, and 15% who declined to answer that question.

Ethnic background was coded in terms of white (66%), African-American (27%), and other (7%). Gender was recorded as male (40%) or female (60%).

Newspaper reading behavior was categorized as regular (nearly every day, 40%), occasional (a few times a week, 26%), infrequent (rarely, 19%) or, none (never, 13%). Two percent of the respondents declined to answer this question.

Television viewing habits were measured by asking how many hours of television they watched on a daily basis. The responses were coded as infrequent (less than one hour, 11%), occasional (1 to 2 hours, 31%), frequent (2-to-4 hours, 34%) and heavy (more than four hours, 22%). Two percent of the respondents declined to answer this question.

Statistical Analysis. Survey responses were analyzed with a series of Chi-Square analysis, using the question responses as nominal categories. The other/refused categories were eliminated for purposes of the analysis.

RESULTS

RQ-1. Non-Local Communication Frequency

The most frequently reported version of non-local communication was prayer response (90%, see Table 1). Other categories in which a majority reported such incidents included telephone source concurrence (79%), telephone source anticipation (67%), presence of another source sensation (65%), anticipated event premonition (53%), and dream premonition (51%). The lowest frequency of responses came from post-death communication (29%), and dream concurrence (28%).

RQ-2. Influence of Individual Difference Variables.

All four individual difference variables had some influence on the responses, but that impact differed based upon the reported event.

Dream premonition. Reports of dream premonition differed significantly by age ([X.sup.2] = 22.85, p < .005). Specifically, the frequency of reported incidents of dream premonition was inversely related to age (18-34, 69%; 35-49, 54%; 50-64, 48%; 65 plus, 35%). Thus the frequency with which people reported this form of non-local communication declined as age increased.

Dream concurrence. Reports of dream concurrence also differed significantly by age ([X.sup.2] = 22.85, p < .005). Again, the frequency of reported incidents was inversely related to age (18-34, 39%; 35-49, 29%; 50-64, 28%; 65 plus, 17%) with percentages declining as age increased.

Telephone source anticipation. Two-thirds of the participants (67%) reported having such an experience. Further, responses to this question varied significantly in terms of newspaper readership ([X.sup.2] = 16.95, p < .05) in that the frequency of the response increased as reading frequency declined (daily, 60%; occasional, 71%; rarely, 70%; never, 78%),

Telephone source concurrence. More than three-fourths (79%) reported having such an experience--the second most frequent form reported. Further, this response differed significantly by gender ([X.sup.2] = 7.36, p < .05). Women (83%) reported more incidents than men (72%).

Prayer response. Ninety percent (90%) reported having a prayer answered by God--the most frequent response in the survey. Further, this response differed significantly by gender ([X.sup.2] = 14.27, p < .001) and race ([X.sup.2] = 13.93, p < .05). Women (95%) reported more incidents than men (83%). Blacks (95%) reported more incidents than whites (89%).

Anticipated event premonition. A majority (53%) reported having a premonition about a future event. However, there were no significant differences in relation to any of the individual difference variables or the communication consumption variables.

Pet Cognitive premonition. Less than a majority (45%) reported knowing of pets that anticipated the return of their owner. Again, there were no significant differences in relation to any of the individual difference variables or the communication consumption variables.

Travel premonition. Forty-five percent (45%) of the participants reported having a travel premonition. This response differed significantly by race ([X.sup.2] = 13.90, p < .05) and TV viewing habits ([X.sup.2] = 43.40, p < .001). On the racial dimension, blacks (60%) reported more incidents than whites (39%). In terms of TV viewing habits, the reported frequency increased as TV viewing increased (less than one hour, 41%; 1-2 hours, 40%; 2-4 hours, 51%; more than 4 hours, 47%).

Post-death communication. Twenty-nine percent (29%) reported receiving post-death communication from a deceased friend or family member--the third lowest rate of response in the survey. Further, these responses varied by gender ([X.sup.2] = 15.45, p < .001), race ([X.sup.2] = 13.49, p < .05), and income ([X.sup.2] = 17.96, p < .01). Women (36%) reported more incidents than men (19%), blacks (41%) more than whites (23%), and upper income respondents (22%) were less likely to report such incidents than were lower income (37%) or middle income (39%) respondents.

Presence-of-Another sensation. Nearly two-thirds (65%) reported having experienced this feeling. Further, the responses varied by income ([X.sup.2] = 12.99, p < .05), newspaper reading behavior ([X.sup.2] = 22.10, p < .005), and TV viewing habits ([X.sup.2] = 22.07, p < .005). In terms of the individual difference variable of income, upper income persons (61%) were less likely to report such incidents than were lower income (71%) or middle income (71%) respondents. The relationships between the two communication consumption variables, though, were curvilinear in nature. In terms of newspaper reading behavior, the highest frequency came from those who rarely read a newspaper (70%); lowest frequency from those who never read a paper (59%). There were mixed results from daily (65%) and occasional (63%) readers. In terms of TV viewing habits, the highest frequency was higher among those who watched 2-to-4 hours daily (67%), while lowest among those who watched 1-to-2 hours daily (63%). While these numbers were statistically significant, the actual size of the variations was relatively small.

Concurrent emotional experience. About one-third of the respondents recalled experiencing a concurrent emotional experience. The most frequent example given for this was a sense of empathy among people following the 9/11 tragedy, i.e., people reported feeling that they were sharing experiences of depression that those more directly involved in the tragedy must have also experienced. The second type of concurrent emotional experience came from individuals who said they had experienced such concurrent emotions with their siblings--particularly those respondents who happened to have identical twins. This response varied significantly by TV viewing habits ([X.sup.2] = 25.21, p < .05) in that the frequency was higher among those who watched 1-to-2 hours daily (38%), while relatively stable among the other viewing groups (less than one hour, 31%; 2-4 hours, 32%; more than 4 hours, 33%).

DISCUSSION

The high frequency of responses regarding prayer (90%) may be inflated due to a socially desired response pattern. Since this survey was conducted in Alabama--one of the states in the southern Bible Belt--religious values are an integral part of many people's lives. As such, it would be socially acceptable and desirable to acknowledge that God had answered one's prayers. However, the total number responding in this manner (90%) exceeds the number in the state who are active in religious organizations. Such a discrepancy would indicate that this response may be inflated by perceptions of social values. Another possible explanation could be that this region has a high number of persons who believe in the power of prayer regardless of religious affiliation. Research suggests that incidents of prayer response correlate directly to a belief in God. However, belief is not a theoretical requirement for all non-local phenomena. For example, incidents of remote viewing and pet anticipation responses appear to occur with equal frequency regardless of the participants beliefs in the reality of the phenomenon.

There was no identifiable gender effect in terms of perceptions of dreams as non-local communication. From this perspective, this study is at odds with previous research which reported that women pay more attention to their dreams than men (Robbins & Tanck, 1988). That effect apparently does not extend to dreams as non-local communication. This study suggests that the frequency with which people pay attention to their dreams does not differ by gender, but the interpretation of content may be a qualitative activity in which differences still occur. However, the responses on dream experiences and the resulting variations based on age are interesting in that they are exactly opposite of what would be expected with a random distribution based on the bell-shaped curve. Specifically, if such experiences occurred on a random basis within one's life span, then older people would have been more likely to have had non-local dream experiences simply because they have lived longer and thus had more dreams. The fact that the numbers are the inverse of that prediction indicates that the responses may be based on interpretative experiences rather than factual experiences. Also, the age difference is consistent with previous research that suggests younger people, particularly children, are more receptive to beliefs about anomalous cognition. Therefore, younger people may be (1) more willing to categorize some dream experiences as non-local communication, (2) more likely to interpret some of their dreams as falling into this category, or (3) demonstrate more sensitivity to non-local stimuli (Hart, 2003).

Telephone source concurrence (thinking of someone just before they call) was the second-highest reported incident (79%). This finding could be interpreted as supporting studies which argue that precognition is a more "normal" human trait than generally believed (Talbot, 1991). Women report more telephone source concurrence than do men. The proportion of women (83%) reporting these incidents as compared to men (72%) is supportive of research which reported that women are more able to achieve resonance than men (Jahn & Dunne, 1987). However, the data might also be supportive of the critics who argue that telephone source concurrence only seems like non-local communication because of the coincidental occurrence of two random events. Specifically the differential in incidents among women corresponds to the difference between men and women in general telephone behavior. Women answer telephones more frequently than men. As such, it would be anticipated that they would have more frequent random chances of answering a phone at the same time that they were thinking about someone.

Nearly two-thirds of the respondents reported experiencing the presence of another person. Further, the responses varied by income, newspaper reading behavior, and TV viewing habits--an indication that media consumption and lifestyle apparently influenced the responses. Future research in this area should consider examining the specific aspects of the "stared-at sensation" and its relationship to the "spotlight effect," the belief that others are paying more attention to us than they really are (Epley, Gilovich & Savitsky, 2002; Gilovich, Medvec & Savitsky, 2000; Gilovich & Savitsky, 1999).

The concurrent emotional response answers could have been contaminated by the 9/11 experience. Several people mentioned this as something that they experienced. Communication consumption was an active variable, but its impact varied depending upon the source of the media. As newspaper readership increased, some responses decreased. This would indicate that consumption of additional information through reading of newspapers inhibited the likelihood that an individual would view non-local communication legitimately. Conversely, an affinity for non-local communication increased as television viewing increased. This was particularly noticeable on travel premonitions. As such, it may indicate higher consumption of news stories about such events. After every major airplane crash, for example, there is inevitably a story about someone who changed travel plans at the last minute and thus avoided dying in the crash. Such stories are not unusual, though, since most airlines deliberately over-book most flights because they know some people will always change their travel plans.

It's hard to say if the impact of income is affected by other variables such as lifestyle or educational background. Regardless, upper income respondents seemed more skeptical on some dimensions.

Race was a significant factor on some responses. This variation (particularly on prayer) could be based on the strong roles that religious institutions play in the local black community.

Mazzoni and Lombardo (1999) noted that one danger of dream psychology is that an individual's response to their dreams is subject to the creation of a false belief. Such a possibility has to be considered within the context of this study. These data can only relate the extent to which individuals believe that dreams have served as a form of non-local communication, i.e., whether individuals believed that they have communicated with another person through dreams or whether dreams have provided them with precognition of future events. It cannot confirm the reality of those experiences. That same problem applies to the other data in this study. Still, this survey has provided scholars with benchmark numbers that reflect the perceptions of non-local communication within one population. Further research is needed to document how widespread these perceptions might be among other populations and how these perceptions may influence behavior.

Also, due to the large number of analyses conducted for this study, there is a statistical possibility that some of the significant differences could be attributable to chance. Additional research is needed to verify these results in case some of the identified effects are the result of Type I errors. Researchers are cautioned to remember that these results reflect respondents' perceptions of non-local communication incidences and do not represent confirmation of their existence. Sherman's (2002) argument that such perceptions are the by-product of an inherent human need to see patterns is still a relevant point and must be considered. Additional research on the relationships of such beliefs to other psychological factors is needed. One valuable avenue may be to seek associations between such beliefs and the "illusion of transparency" (Gilovich & Savitsky, 1999). This concept examines the extent to which people believe that others can read their emotions. Such beliefs may be associated with and at least partially explain beliefs about non-local communication.

Finally, perceptions of non-local communication could vary by other group factors. In several areas of study (prayer response, travel premonition, post-death communication, this study showed significant differences in relation to gender and race, with women and blacks reporting more incidents of non-local communication than did men and whites. Further studies in other areas with particular attention to gender and racial differences are recommended.

REFERENCES

Alcock, J. E. (1981). Parapsychology: Science or magic? New York: Pergamon.

Astin, J. A., & Harkness, E. (2000). The efficacy of 'distant healing': A systematic review of randomized trials. Annals of Internal Medicine, 132, 903-910.

Azzone, P., & Freni, S. (1998). How early adolescents describe their dreams: A quantitative analysis. Adolescence, 33(129), 229-244.

Blackmore, S. (1997). Probability misjudgment and belief in the paranormal: A newspaper survey. British Journal of Psychology, 88, 683-689.

Blackmore, S., & Troscianko, T. (1985). Belief in the paranormal: Probability judgments, illusory control, and the 'chance baseline shift.' British Journal of Psychology, 76, 459-468.

Braden, G. (2000). The Isaiah effect. New York: Penguin.

Braud, W. G., Shafer, D., & Andrews, S. (1990). Electrodermal correlates of remote attention: Autonomic reactions to an unseen gaze. Proceedings of the Parapsychological Association 33rd Annual Convention (pp. 14-28). Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press.

Braud, W. G., Shafer, D., & Andrews, S. (1993a). Reactions to an unseen gaze (remote attention): A review, with new data on autonomic starting detection. Journal of Parapsychology, 57, 372-390.

Braud, W. G., Shafer, D., & Andrews, S. (1993b). Further studies of autonomic detection of remote staring: Replication, new control procedures, and personality correlates. Journal of Parapsychology, 57, 391-409.

Brown, C. (1996). Cosmic voyage. New York: Penguin books.

Brown, D. J., & Sheldrake, R. (1998). Perceptive pets: A survey in Northwest California. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 62, 396-406.

Coleman, D. J. (1999). Narrative Performance Mode (NPM) of discourse. Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 54, 233-258.

Colwell, J., Schrader, S., & Sladen, D. (2000). The ability to detect unseen staring: A literature review and empirical tests. British Journal of Psychology, 91, 71-85.

Coover, J. E. (1913). The feeling of being stared at. American Journal of Psychology, 24, 570-575.

Dillbeck, M. C. (1981). Social field effect in crime prevention. Paper presented at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association. Los Angeles.

Domhoff, G. W. (1993). The repetition of dreams and dream element: A possible clue to the function of dreams. In A. Moffitt, M. Kramer, & P. Hoffman (eds.), The function of dreaming (pp. 293-329). Albany, NY: SUNY Press.

Emmons, C. F., & Sobal, J. (1981). Paranormal beliefs: Testing the marginality hypothesis. Sociological Focus, 14, 49-56.

Epley, N., Gilovich, T., & Savitsky, K. (2002). Empathy neglect: Reconciling the spotlight effect and the correspondence bias. Journal of Personality & Social Psychology, 83, 300-312.

Gilovich, T., Medvec, V. H., & Savitsky, K. (2000). The spotlight effect in social judgment: An egocentric bias in estimates of the salience of one's own actions and appearance. Journal of Personality & Social Psychology, 78, 211-222.

Gilovich, T., & Savitsky, K. (1999). The spotlight effect and the illusion of transparency: Egocentric assessments of how we are seen by others. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 8(6), 165-168.

Groth-Marnat, G., & Pegden, J. (1998). Personality correlates of paranormal belief: Locus of control and sensation-seeking. Social Behavior & Personality, 26, 291-296.

Gurzi, F. (1998). Predictive air terrorism experiences of 1987 and 1988. Journal of Religion and Psychical Research, 21, 145-154.

Hart, T. (2003). The secret spiritual world of children. Maui: Inner Ocean Publishing.

Howard, E. D. (1996). Suffering loss, seeking healing: Prayers for pain-filled times. Mystic, CN: Twenty-Third Publications.

Jahn, R. G., & Dunne, B. J. (1987). Margins of reality: The role of consciousness in the physical world. San Diego: Harvest Books.

Jung, C. G., & Pauli, W. (1955). The interpretation of nature and the psyche. New York: Pantheon.

Killen, P., Wildman, R. W., & Wildman, R. (1974). Superstitiousness and intelligence. Psychological Reports, 34, 1158.

Koren, S. A., & Persinger, M. A. (2002). Possible disruption of remote viewing by complex weak magnetic fields around the stimulus subject and the possibility of accessing real phase space: A pilot study. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 95, 989-998.

Kramer, M. (1993). The selective mood regulating function of dreaming: An update and revision. In A. Moffitt, M. Kramer, & P. Hoffman (eds.), The function of dreaming (pp. 139-196). Albany, NY: SUNY Press.

May, E. C. (1998). Response to 'Experiment one of the SAIC remote viewing program: A critical re-evaluation. Journal of Parapsychology, 62, 309-318.

Mazzoni, G. A. L., & Lombardo, P. (1999). Dream interpretation and false beliefs. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 30, 45-50.

McMoneagle, J. W. (1997). Perceptions of a paranormal subject. Journal of Parapsychology, 61, 97-118.

Messer, W. S., & Griggs, R. A. (1989). Student belief and involvement in the paranormal and performance in introductory psychology. Teaching of Psychology, 16, 187-191.

Meyer, J. R., & Tuber, S. (1989). Intrapsychic and behavioral correlates of the phenomenon of imaginary companions in your children. Psychoanalytic Psychology, 6, 151-168.

Mitchell, C. E. (1989). Internal locus of control for expectation, perception and management of answered prayer. Journal of Psychology & Theology, 17, 21-26.

Moffitt, A., Kramer, M., & Hoffman, P. (eds.) (1993). The function of dreaming. Albany, NY: SUNY Press.

Oberst, U. E. (2002). An Adlerian-Constructivist approach to dreams. Journal of Individual Psychology, 58(2), 122-131.

Oktavec, E. (1996). Answered prayer: Miracles and milagros along the border. Tuscon: University of Arizona Press.

Orme-Johnson, D. W., Dillbeck, M. S., & Alexander, C. N. (2003). Preventing terrorism and international conflict: Effects of large assemblies of participants in the transcendental mediation and TM-Sidhi programs. Journal of Offender Rehabilitation, 36, 283.

Orme-Johnson, D. W., Alexander, C. N., Davies, J. L., Chandler, H. M., & Larimore, W. E. (1988). International peace project in the Middle East.

Journal of Conflict Resolution, 32, 776-812.

Otis, L. P., & Alcock, J. E. (1982). Factors affecting extraordinary belief. Journal of Social Psychology, 118, 77-85.

Persinger, M. A., Roll, W. G., Tiller, S. G., Koren, S. A., & Cook, C. M. (2002). Remote viewing with the artist Ingo Swann: Neuropsychological profile, electroencephalographic correlates, magnetic resonance imagine (MRI), and possible mechanisms. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 94, 927-949.

Poortman, F. F. (1959). The feeling of being stared at. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 40, 4-12.

Powell, L., & Cowart, J. (2003). Political campaign communication: Inside and out. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Puthoff, H. E. (2001). CIH-initiated remote viewing at Stanford Research Institute. The Intelligences: Journal of U.S. Intelligence Studies, 12(1), 60-67.

Rhine, L. (1961). Hidden channels of the mind. New York: Sloane Associates.

Robbins, P. R., & Tanck, R. H. (1988). Interest in dreams and dream recall. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 66, 291-294.

Robbins, P. R., & Tanck, R. H. (1991). Theories of dreams held by American college students. Journal of Social Psychology, 131, 143-145.

Roe, C. A. (1990). Critical thinking and belief in the paranormal: A re-evaluation. British Journal of Psychology, 90, 85-98.

Sanders, H., Davis, M. F., Duncan, B., Meaney, F. J., Haynes, J., & Barton, L. L. (2003). Use of complementary and alternative medical therapies among children with special health care needs in Southern Arizona. Pediatrics, 111, 584-587.

.Schlitz, M., & Braud, W. G. (1997). Distant intentionality and healing: Assessing the evidence. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 3, 62-73.

Schlitz, M., & LaBerge, S. (1994). Autonomic detection of remote observation: Two conceptual replications. Paper presented at the 37th annual meeting of the Parapsychology Association, Amsterdam.

Schmidt, S., & Walach, H. (2001). Electrodermal activity (EDA)--state-of-the-art measurements and techniques for parapsychological purposes. Journal of Parapsychology, 64, 139-163.

Schmidt, S., Schneider, R., Utts, J., & Walach, H. (2004). Distant intentionality and the feeling of being stared at: Two meta-analyses. British Journal of Psychology, 95, 235-247.

Sheldrake, R. (1999). Dogs that know when their owners are coming home, and other unexplained powers of animals. London: Hutchinson.

Sheldrake, R., Lawlor, C., & Turney, J. (1998). Perceptive pets: A survey in London. Biology Forum, 91, 57-74.

Sheldrake, R., & Smart, P. (1997). Psychic pets: A survey of Northwest England. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 61, 353-364.

Shermer, M. (2002). Why people believe weird things: Pseudoscience, superstition, and other confusions of our time. New York: Owl Books.

Steinkamp, F. (1999). Testing clairvoyance and precognition by manipulating probabilities Journal of Parapsychology, 63, 99-130.

Steinkamp, F. (2000). Does precognition foresee the future? A postal experiment to assess the possibility of true precognition. Journal of Parapsychology, 64, 3-18.

Steinkamp, F. (2001). Does precognition foresee the future? Series 2, a laboratory replication and series 3, a world wide web application. Journal of Parapsychology, 65, 17-40.

Steinkamp, F., Milton, J., & Morris, R. L. (1998). A meta-analysis of forced-choice experiments comparing clairvoyance and precognition. Journal of Parapsychology, 62, 193-218.

Talbot, M. (1991). The holographic universe. New York: HarperCollins.

Targ, R. (1994). Remote-viewing replication: Evaluated by concept analysis. Journal of Parapsychology, 58, 271-284.

Targ, R. (2000). Remote viewing in a group setting. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 14, 107-114.

Targ, R., & Puthoff, H. E. (1977). Mind reach. New York: Delacorte Press.

Titchener, E. B. (1898). The feeling of being stared at. Science, 8, 895-897.

Tobacyk, J., Miller, M. J., & Jones, G. (1984). Paranormal beliefs of high school students. Psychological Reports, 55, 255-261.

Tonne, H. (1996). Religious beliefs in America: A new poll. Free Inquiry, 16(3), 34-39.

Ullman, M., Krippner, S., & Vaughan, A. (1973). Dream telepathy. New York: Macmillan.

Vassy, Z. (1995). Indirect application of ESP to counseling. Journal of Parapsychology, 59, 147-162.

Wiseman, R., & Milton, J. (1998). Experiment one of the SAIC remote viewing program: A critical re-evaluation. Journal of Parapsychology, 62, 297-308.

Wiseman, R., & Milton, J. (1999). Experiment one of the SAIC remote viewing program: A critical re-evaluation: Reply to May. Journal of Parapsychology, 63, 3-14.

Wiseman, R., & Schlitz, M. (1997). Experimenter effects and the remote detection of staring. Journal of Parapsychology, 61, 197-208.

Author info: Correspondence should be sent to: Dr. Larry Powell, Communications Studies, U. of Alabama at Birmingham, 901 South 15th Street, Birmingham, AL 35294-2060.

June Mack

Larry Powell

University of Alabama at Birmingham
TABLE 1 Percentages Reporting Experiences with Non-Local
Communication

Type of Experience                        Percent

Prayer response                             90%
Telephone source concurrence                79%
Telephone source anticipation               67%
Presence of another/stared at sensation     65%
Anticipated event premonition               53%
Dream premonition                           51%
Pet cognitive premonition                   47%
Travel premonition                          45%
Concurrent emotional experience             34%
Post-death communication                    29%
Dream concurrence                           28%
COPYRIGHT 2005 North American Journal of Psychology
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Mack, June; Powell, Larry
Publication:North American Journal of Psychology
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 1, 2005
Words:6453
Previous Article:An experimental comparison of conventional and web-based instructional formats.
Next Article:Communication apprehension and cultural context: a comparison of communication apprehension in Japanese and American students.
Topics:

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2022 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters |