ESP refers to the sensing of things beyond the range of your standard senses.
Clairaudience: hearing things beyond your natural hearing Clairvoyance: seeing things beyond your natural sight
Most people don’t advertise these abilities. Touching, tasting and smelling things beyond your natural range is gross.
There is also precognition (literally ‘knowing beforehand’) People with precognition claim to be able to predict the future.
Psychics have existed for many thousands of years and still operate today, despite there being zero evidence for their powers.
Ancient psychics were often referred to as “soothsayers” and they used various methods to see into the future: Throwing bones Looking at bird’s flight patterns Examining animal entrails Astrology Tarot cards Numerology
Unfortunately, many “psychics” make millions of dollars by convincing gullible people of their powers.
These con artists make many, many predictions. Some of them are bound to come true, by chance alone.
“The three horned dragon will rise in the city of five hills.” Some of their predicitions are so vague that anything could be a sign that they came true:
“There will be a natural disaster in Australia this year, possibly involving fire or water.” Some of them are so obvious that they are bound to happen anyway:
“An assassination attempt will be made on Julia Gilard which the media will attempt to cover up.” The best ones come true regardless of what happens:
Sylvia Browne One of the worst, yet most successful psychics around.
In 2003, Browne claimed that eleven year old Shawn Hornbeck had been abducted by a very tall man with long black dreadlocks and a blue sedan, and that his body could be found near two large, jagged boulders in a wooded area about 20 miles southwest of Richwoods. Her claims led to a refocusing of search efforts of numerous people calling in with tips regarding possible spottings of the rock formations Browne had mentioned. Hornbeck was found alive four years later, having been abducted by a white man with short brown hair who drove a small white Nissan pickup. Browne told the New York Daily News, "I'm terribly sorry that this happened, but I think my body of work stands by itself.” -- Wikipedia
If you pay her $850, she will talk to you on the phone for around 15 minutes and tell you about your guardian angels.
Sylvester Stallone’s mother
Rumpology – Like palm reading, but further south. She will look at your bottom for $125.
Ke$ha wears her mother’s dried up placenta around her neck to give her psychic powers. No clever picture could truly capture the horror of this statement so none will be used.
Psychics often depend on a logical fallacy known as “confirmation bias”.
Confirmation bias is the tendency to focus on evidence that supports your belief and ignore evidence that doesn’t. It is why a lot of people believe they have powers themselves.
ie: finishing off their partner’s sentences or determing what mood they’re in without being told People often mistake perfectly mundane perception for psychic powers.
The James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) offers a USD$1,000,000 prize to anybody who can display supernatural powers in a controlled environment.
So far, nobody has claimed the prize, despite hundreds of applicants.
Suspiciously, none of the big-name psychics have even accepted the challenge, despite being told the prize could be donated to charity in their name.
People WANT to believe in these things. A world with psychic powers is probably more interesting than a world without.
“..it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.” Carl Sagan 9/11/1934 – 20/12/1996