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Harary, Blue

Category: Other spiritually gifted people

The following description is based on an article Dr  Keith Harary, [known as Blue Harary] wrote in November 2004.  At the time he was a research director of the Institute for Advanced Psychology in Portland, Oregon, focusing on cognition and altered states of consciousness. His book, Who Do You Think You Are? Explore Your Many-Sided Self with the Berkeley Personality Profile, had just been published.

My induction into the psychic Hall of Fame began with a casual experiment. I was only 17-years-old—I knew little about scientific research, and not much more about myself. I knew only that I had a deep interest in human nature, instilled during childhood as my closest friend slowly died from a rare connective tissue disease that seemed to dissolve him from the inside out.

That focus deepened in the summer of 1970, as I wandered the cliffs of Acadia National Park in Maine with a group of friends. Many of us had nicknames and mine was Blue, for my love of the peaceful sky and water around the park. Late one night, I climbed a cliff and fell, saving myself by grabbing a tree instead of smashing on the rocks about a hundred feet below. Days later, a friend committed suicide by jumping from a different cliff. I felt we had traded lives. Soon after, I met two women who told me about Arizona gold prospector James Kidd, who left a quarter of a million dollars in his handwritten will for scientific research into the existence of the soul.

Returning to my home in New York, I'd spent the day visiting the Museum of Natural History on Manhattan's Upper West Side only six blocks from the American Society for Psychical Research (ASPR), where the Kidd Estate Project was headquartered. After wandering the museum, I called the Society from a phone booth and was put right through to a graduate student working on the Kidd Project.

"Have you ever had an out-of-body experience?" she asked. I associated the term with an exercise I'd originally practiced with my dying friend when his pain made other activities unbearable: We lay in the grass, relaxed our bodies and let our imaginations run free. It was the only introduction I needed. I agreed to come right over.

"By the way, what's your name?" she asked before hanging up.

"Blue," I said.

As soon as I arrived I was invited to participate in an experiment that required I relax in one room while trying to describe objects hidden in another room. The notion was that if the mind could "leave" the body to see the objects, perhaps it could also survive bodily death.

"Project your mind into the room upstairs and describe what you see on the table," the grad student instructed.

In response, I named a few objects: A statuette, antlers, a circle with an "X" in its middle and a rectangular, wire-filled box. These items, it turned out, matched a statuette of a reindeer and an actual reel-to-reel tape recorder on the table in a room upstairs, where I'd never been. In truth, invoking the images hadn't been that difficult. I'd spent the afternoon staring at stuffed animals with antlers (among other objects) at the museum. And the lab equipment surrounding me might remind anyone of a wire-filled box. But the graduate student conducting the test was impressed.

 "You're a psychic," she pronounced. To a teenager seeking transcendent experience, she was an authority.

I continued to visit the ASPR often during the next couple of years, and found that Kidd researchers were attracted by my easy ability to enter the out-of-body experience, or OBE—the altered state deemed essential for investigating the soul. To me it was a familiar state of mind I had practiced since childhood. I just relaxed my body as deeply as I could and imagined how it would feel to be someplace else. The more I relaxed, and the more intensely I focused, the more I felt as though I were no longer in my body but mentally present in that other place.

It only makes sense that when I moved to Durham, North Carolina, as a Duke University undergrad in 1972, I found a home at the Psychical Research Foundation (PRF), which shared the Kidd legacy with ASPR. My mentor was the bald, bespectacled psychologist Robert Morris, who had recently earned his Ph.D. from Duke. Our experiment, still considered the classic research on the OBE, used heart and brain wave sensors to establish the signature physiology of the OBE, an underlying arousal coupled with deep, overt relaxation. Whatever the OBE was, Morris concluded, it was the same every time.

We also asked whether the OBE was purely subjective, in the mind of the "traveler" alone, or might somehow be noticed by a distant observer. To pin it down experimentally, we set out to see whether living creatures could detect my mental "presence" when I focused on them from afar.

Human subjects reported that they could somehow sense my presence, but eventually it became clear that they were picking up everything from passing cars to creaks in the floorboards. Gerbils had no apparent reaction. A black rat snake banged his head against his box exactly when I focused on him during our first experiment, but appeared docile the next time out. A more consistent and statistically significant response came from my pet kitten, Spirit, who relaxed whenever I focused on him from a distance. That research was published in the peer reviewed ASPR Journal and to this day, Spirit's behavior has never been explained away.

My participation in those startling experiments became fodder for a host of misleading press reports, from a supermarket tabloid to the front page of the Wall Street Journal, where I was falsely quoted as saying I'd contacted discarnate entities. Even as a naive 19-year-old college student, I felt discomfort with my role and realized I was being used. Attending classes, I spoke with professors who had contempt for Rhine and the parapsychology scene around campus. I was relieved when they failed to grasp I was the controversial psychic "Blue," by then living in a closet-size back room in an old clapboard house on the edge of campus that served as the PRF lab.

I lived at the lab because the rent was low—just $35 a month—and, with no help from family, I barely had enough to pay for food. What I lacked in money I made up for with work. There at night alone, I tended the animals—not just my cat Spirit and his brother, Soul, but the hamsters and gerbils, too. I felt like I was part of the menagerie, a psychic mascot always on hand, not just to participate in experiments but also to build bookshelves and help write papers. When the PRF was called to investigate the famed Amityville haunted house, I was encouraged to go along. But after a local friend checked it out for me, I concluded it was a fraud and stayed home. It seemed clear to me that Morris and others benefited when I took the spotlight and drew the fire, allowing them to play the scientist role without being tarred by the "psychic" brush.

These were sacrifices I was willing to make as long as whatever truth we found might survive. But the truth was ambiguous. One researcher I knew was dismissed from Rhine's laboratory after throwing out data he deemed too negative to support his conclusions. Another discarded data he thought too positive. Despite these abuses, most researchers seemed to shoot straight. Even so, when one researcher reported spectacular results, efforts at replication by other researchers often failed.

Even the most dramatic results in a parapsychology laboratory, I learned, couldn't be reproduced on demand. Had we tried to replicate the kitten experiment, for instance, it would have been impossible to achieve the same conditions. The kitten became older and more independent. Other pets' owners would, inevitably, have different dynamics with pets of their own. It appeared to me that something real might be going on, but pinning it down in the lab was going to be hard…………

At this point the money motive started to rear its ugly head and Keith started to use his abilities for profit and personal gain and as a consequence he appears to have started to lose his gift............


One refrain from friends and colleagues, though a joke, was perceptive, indeed: "If you're so psychic, why aren't you rich?" In 1984, I joined two partners in a company called Delphi Associates, with the mission of investing in silver based on predictions of whether the price of that metal would rise, fall or stay the same. In one sense it was a wild, spontaneous adventure, but in another, it provided a serious chance to see what I could do outside the boundaries of the lab. Could I predict the market? It was impossible to know until I tried. We managed to predict the direction of the silver market nine times in a row before failing twice. That's when we pulled the plug. I later found my name used to promote the technique to the public, something I couldn't support

.He also got ‘used’ by other people and sadly let himself be used..........

I was also troubled when a team of "psychic archaeologists" asked me to help find a mythical wreck, a billion dollar Spanish galleon that had probably never existed at all. The expedition director, who needed to satisfy his investors, homed in on a downed ship of trivial financial value in a section of the ocean known to be littered with wrecks, then word got around that I had helped guide him to it as a "significant" find. In fact, the ship had already been found and excavated months before I arrived. False or exaggerated information damaged the credibility of those who were doing legitimate research and made it harder to discover the elusive truth.
As Blue Harary, I was anointed a "superpsychic" by parapsychologists and a "psychical Paul Bunyan" by the press. Even though I didn't understand myself, much less the nature of the universe, people hounded me for the secrets of the afterlife, as if I were hooked, by IV drip, to spirits and the dead.

He has, to all intents and purposes now lost his gift  - the goose that lay the golden egg.  At the time he wrote the article he does other things………..

Today, as a researcher, writer and consultant in industries from automotive to high-tech, I've created an original personality test with colleagues at the University of California at Berkeley, designed an award-winning publicity campaign based on psychology principles for Budget Rent-a-Car and headed up corporate human resources.

One of the saddest things about his story is that he now doubts that he had a gift.  Instead of understanding that the spiritual world takes away powers when they are abused, as he abused them, he now thinks he had no powers and that it was just some sort of odd quirk of psychological aberrance that was occurring.

In my Valentine's Day experience, there were probably subtle clues to my wife's ovarian cancer. It may have been something I learned from previous situations in which she wasn't feeling well, suggests Paul Lewicki, a cognitive psychologist at the University of Tulsa—some differences in her speech or appearance that were too complex to consciously process. "The human mind can't interpret beyond two or three variables on a conscious level," says Lewicki, "but the unconscious can."

Science has entangled him and he has become lost to the spiritual world.  He would have been better to leave science and the ego alone and journey like Eckhart Tolle to a better place.  Poor lost soul.

If I had never travelled the maze of my own uncertainty, never been cast as the embodiment of the controversy I hoped to resolve, I might have lived a simpler life. But the questions I faced might have been much the same. In the end, those questions have as much to do with our humanity as our perceptions of the paranormal.

 

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