Is Telepathy Real?

Is Telepathy Real? Examining The Evidence

Is telepathy real?

“Is telepathy real?”

We don’t know that. But we can look at the evidence and draw our own (uncertain) conclusions. Telepathy has been extensively studied throughout the last couple centuries. It’s a relatively recent idea, but the meanings behind it have been talked about from long before the 18th century. Concepts like a spiritual realm, precognition, and the third eye have been central features of religions such as Hinduism and Buddhism. Several experiments have also been performed to test telepathy and psychic thought-transference. A very understandable question on people’s minds is whether telepathy is actually a real thing. Though there has been no scientific consensus that telepathy exists as an ability, there is some evidence that supports the idea of telepathy.

Let’s go back to where it all started: the concept of telepathy originated in a research institute called the Society for Psychical Research (SPR). SPR remains a controversial institute, and has received criticism from skeptics who say that they use fraudulent tactics and misinformation. At the same time, it’s one of the more established and influential institutes that regularly examine psychic phenomena.

We’ve already established that there’s no scientific consensus or proof that telepathy is real. However, we’re going to explore some evidence which might point to the idea of telepathy being real.


1. The Gilbert Murray Studies

Gilbert Murray, a British scholar and public intellectual, conducted an 8-year long study into telepathy, between 1916 and 1924. The details of the tests can be further explored in his papers. In total, there were 236 experiments conducted. What’s significant is that 36% of the experiments conducted were “successful”. This is significantly above the expected range, which was around 2 to 3%. This suggests strong evidence for telepathy. Although it was suggested that some of the results could be explained by hyperesthesia, a condition which causes an abnormal increase in sensitivity to stimuli and can give the appearance of paranormal and psychical phenomena.


2. Experimental Evidence for Anomalous Retroactive Influences on Cognition and Affect

Social psychologist Daryl Bem wrote a paper in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology to test psi, which is the use of energy or information transfer that is unexplained by physical processes. 1,000 participants in 9 experiments responded to time-reversing stimuli of events that were going to occur in the future. 8 of the 9 experiments yielded significant results, and it suggested mild evidence of precognition. I recommend reading the full paper to look at the methodology and analysis of the data. Other experiments, such as the Ganzfeld experiment, have also yielded statistically significant results that suggest the existence of telepathy.


3. Electronic Telepathy

We’ve already sent a telepathic brain-to-brain message using technology. In this experiment, two participants in India and France wore caps that contained electronic contacts. The goal of the experiment was to see if one person could use their brain to send a message to the other person. Electroencephalograms (EEGs) were used to record a message and translate it for the receiver. Messages were not sent in the form of text or audio, but they appeared as “flashes of light” into the receiver’s mind, which they interpreted in words. The military has also attempted to manufacture telepathy.

4. Anecdotal Evidence

While we realize that it’s not scientific, we believe that anecdotal evidence cannot be completely ignored. There are plenty of anecdotes of people performing or experiencing telepathy. Some could be explained as fraud, others delusion. Others wishful thinking, or sensory deprivation. However, there are still plenty of accounts of healthy individuals experiencing psychic phenomena, and you’ve probably heard one before. You can click here to read some of the anecdotal evidence for twin telepathy.


5. Quantum Entanglement

Quantum entanglement is a phenomena in quantum physics when two objects can be linked together because they vibrate in the same phase. They are said to be entangled, and the distance does not matter; they could be on opposite sides of the world and still be entangled. “Entanglement” here means that they know the position of the other, and can mimic it. This allows any two particles to be described as a system, instead of independently. If two brains could be linked through quantum entanglement, this can explain a mysterious telepathic connection.


A Counterpoint

With all that being said, there is also plenty of evidence out there that suggests telepathy is not real after all. Perhaps the most significant is the set of studies conducted by the National Research Council (NRC). The NRC has been conducting research on telepathy, psychics, and other parapsychological phenomena for 130 years, and they say that they have no conclusive evidence that phenomena such as telepathy and ESP exist. There are no scientific mechanisms to explain or justify this phenomena. They did, however, say that there are plenty of unexplained outcomes that might appear to be influenced by psychical phenomena, but cannot be proven or explained.


These are just a few reasons why telepathy could very well be real. It’s still something that we have to learn more about and maybe certain discoveries will lead to somewhere. Telepathy has seen some scientific developments in recent years, and researchers have seen some progress in engineering telepathy by transferring electric brain waves. Like so many other scientific advancements, telepathy has a long way to go, and hopefully one day the question “is telepathy real?” will be answered without doubt.


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