MYSTERIES OF THE MIND
Of all Soviet research relating to parapsychology, however indirectly, the most publicized is the process known as Kirlian photography. Using high-frequency electrical currents, Semyon and Valentina Kirlian discovered some 30 years ago that they could obtain pictures of living organisms that showed a surrounding aura of luminescence. This aura, which is called a ‘ bioplasmic body,” may be the same force field recently detected and measured by such scientists as Gulyaiev and Sergeyev (See also paranormal electrical conduction). Theorists have conjectured that all living things possess a bioplasmic body. Kirlian photographs of leaves have clearly shown visible energy radiating from them, and variations in the aura of leaves of the same species have been proved to signal the onset of disease in a plant before the disease became visible by normal means. Similarly, changes in the aura of a human being may indicate changes in his mental and physical state.
Western parapsychologists have on the whole been slow to follow up the theory of a bioplasmic body, and have pointed out possible alternative explanations of the Kirlian effect. For example, Dr. Montague Ullman pointed out in an interview in Psychic magazine that some physicists believe the luminescence may be produced by ionization of the atmosphere. This caution on the part of Western investigators toward the bioplasma theory is understandable when one considers its resemblance to the ancient belief in an astral body coexisting with the physical body. The Kirlians’ discoveries, and those of some other researchers in the Communist world, appear to support a belief generally regarded as a superstition by scientists in both the West and the East.
Nevertheless, the photographing and measuring of this force field, whatever its fundamental nature, may turn out to have important implications for parapsychology. It seems likely that this energy lies behind PK effects, and it may also play a part in psychic healing and even ESP. In the years ahead, even more exciting developments in parapsychology may emerge from laboratories in the Communist countries.
Above: Dr. Thelma Moss. who has taken more Kirlian photographs and done more experimental work with them than anyone outside Russia.
Above: a Kirlian photo taken by Dr. Moss of Uri Geller’s finger sending a burst of energy during one of his demonstrations. Uri Geller offers scientists the hope of a repeatable psychic experiment. and as a result he has spent days in laboratories with scientists all over the world.
Above: Geller’s finger at rest.
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