Vasiliev, Professor L L - Experiments in mental suggestion – On the question of telepathic phenomena. Suggested by academician V. F. Mitkevich
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Experiments in mental suggestion – Professor L L Vasiliev
Appendix C - On the question of telepathic phenomena. Suggested by academician V. F. Mitkevich, consultant physicist (from records in the archives)
With regard to psychophysical researches on telepathic phenomena I consider the following:-
1. The numerous psychophysical experiments carried out to date involving putting a percipient into a hypnotic sleep and waking him up, both by mental command from a sender, provide an absolute reason for being considered sufficiently reliable proof of the reality of telepathic phenomena, regardless even of the fact that in some isolated instances there was spontaneous falling asleep and awakening of the percipient.
2.In view of the possibility of subconscious "agreement" between sender and percipient (directly or through a third person) the simple method of research into telepathic phenomena, referred to in paragraph 1, cannot by any means be considered satisfactory when the aim of the experiments is to ascertain the nature of the physical agency determining the telepathic connection, particularly in experiments with a bearing on the question of screening, of directed activity of the effect of distance, etc.
3. A complex method might be more reliable and expedient, and I can visualise its realisation after the following manner:
a)The percipient is put into hypnotic condition by mental order of the sender.
(b) The sender then sets in motion a primitive roulette type of wheel which selects (without the intervention of the sender's choice) one eventuality out of a set of equally probable eventualities (e.g. a black or else a white' screen in front of the sender's eyes).
(c) On the basis of the indication of the roulette wheel the sender orders the percipient to guess the given event, e.g., to guess "black or white?"
(d) This process of telepathic transmission of some visual impression (eg "black" or "white") from the sender to the percipient must be repeated as many times in succession as is necessary (taking into account preliminary experiments and probability theory) to establish as reliable the fact of transmission to the percipient of the chance impression of the sender
(e) In order to avoid interference, such as that which might be due to sub-conscious suggestion from the assistant who is with the percipient, the attention of the assistant should not be concentrated on either of the equally probable events; for instance in the case of "black or white?" it is expedient to place before the assistant’s eyes a perpetually moving screen with alternating black and white portions on its surface.
24th May, 1934