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Observations placeholder

Girard, Jean-Pierre - Professor Hasted’s witnessing of the first experiments



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience


In 1975 I was asked by the French chemical physicist Dr Wolkowski to participate in a discussion on the French radio of paranormal physical phenomena. On the day following the broadcast Dr Wolkowski telephoned that as a result of the programme he had been approached by a Parisian, Jean-Pierre Girard, who appeared to have strong psychokinetic abilities. Dr Wolkowski watched objects move about the table without being touched, and video-records were made of thick metal bars being bent by stroking action.

Metal specimens were sealed inside laboratory glassware tubes, and after being offered to Girard they were returned with the seals unbroken and the specimens bent. Rolf Schonbrot’s photograph of these tubes appears in Plate 3.5.

Dr Crussard, the chief scientist of the non-ferrous metal company Pechiney-Ugine-Kuhlmann, took up the investigations, using the extensive metallurgical facilities of his laboratories; and many observations of impressive metal-bendings were carried out. Minor bendings of metal in sealed glass tubes also took place during the Pechiney investigations.

Naturally the Pechiney metal bars were identified by engraved markings (I mention this obvious precaution simply because it has been claimed to be untrue in an article in the New Scientist), and many of the aluminium alloy bars were sufficiently thick (8-17 mm diameter) for their 25-cm lengths to be beyond the limit of human strength to deform.

As a metal deforms it work-hardens, so that the moment (force X distance) necessary for deformation through a certain angle is a smooth function of that angle; the function can be determined experimentally for an alloy of a previously defined composition and treatment. It can also be related to certain other properties of the metal, which are measurable afterwards.

Thus one can know from studying a deformed bar of a known alloy the moment that would have been necessary to deform it from a previously undeformed condition. For 25 cm X 1 cm diameter bars of aluminium alloys such as AU2T4, which has been widely used in these experiments, typical moments are in the range 20-50 Nm. The mean of the maximum moments that have been produced normally by men on 25-cm bars is 25 Nm, and by women 15 Nm. Therefore many of these deformations would have required enormous strength to produce, and since the observation and video-recording was often good, one may also state categorically that the manual force used was small (say 1 Nm).

The record deformation actually achieved by Girard would have required 75 Nm if produced normally; Geller, who was previously researched by Dr Crussard, once achieved 80 Nm and Julie Knowles has also achieved a bend of this order.

I was present at a session at which Girard was filmed in a deformation requiring 23 Nm; the protocol was good, and, as the video-record shows, the manual force was minimal. It is Girard’s custom to hold one end of a bar of circular cross-section in his right hand and pass his left hand slowly over the other end for minutes at a time; he then lays the bar down on a flat surface and rests for a short while. After repeated attempts deformation gradually appears; even a small deformation can be observed if the bar is rolled on a flat surface.


The source of the experience

Girard, Jean Pierre

Concepts, symbols and science items




Science Items

Spoon bending

Activities and commonsteps



Being struck by lightning


Spoon bending