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September 1, 2000
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PDF icon CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6.pdf284.65 KB
RELEASE DATE: For immediate release CONTACTS: Ronald I. Deutsch, Ext. 3754 Home: (415) 326-8773 Elizabeth deAtley, Ext. 3450 Home: (415) 329-0545 Stan DeVaughn, Ext. 3034 Home: (415) 322-3342 Menlo Park, Calif. --Two California scientists reported today on experiments with subjects who demonstrate an ability to perceive information not presented to any known sense and blocked from ordinary perception. In a research paper on paranormal phenomena, Dr. Harold Puthoff and Russell Targ, physicists at Stanford Research Institute (SRI), presented evidence for the existence of a channel through which information about a remote location can be obtained. "Our observation of the phenomena leads us to conclude that experiments in the so-called paranormal phenomena can be scientifically conducted, and it is our hope that other laboratories will initiate additional research to attempt to replicate these findings, " they said. The scientists said one of their objectives was to resolve under conditions "as unambiguous as possible the basic issue of whether a certain class of paranormal perception phenomena exists. "At all times we took measures to prevent sensory leakage and to prevent deception, whether intentional or unintentional, " they said. (more) Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 2/2/2 The results, which covered research from October, 1972 to March, 1974, were published in the current issue of NATURE, the British journal. The scientists described experiments in which: --Uri Geller, an Israeli subject, reproduced target pictures drawn by experimenters at remote locations while Geller was in an electrically- shielded room. --Pat Price, a former California police commissioner, perceived remote outdoor scenes many miles from their physical location in experiments in which neither the subject nor the experimenters knew the location in advance. -?-Brain wave recordings (EEGs) were made of subjects isolated in a room in an effort to determine whether physiological measurements could be made of a remote stimuli. The stimuli was a flashing light in another room. "It may be that remote perceptual ability is widely distributed in the general population, " Targ and Puthoff speculated, "but because the perception is generally below an individual's level of awareness, it is repressed or not noticed. " In the experiments with Geller, he was asked to reproduce 13 drawings over a week-long period while physically separated from his experimenters in a shielded room. Geller was not told who made the drawing, who selected it for him to reproduce or about its method of selection. The researchers said that only after Geller's isolation--in a double- walled steel room that was acoustically, visually and electrically shielded (more) Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 3/3/3 from them--was a target picture randomly chosen and drawn. It was never discussed by the experimenters after being drawn or brought near Geller. All but two of the experiments were conducted with Geller in the shielded room, with the drawings in adjacent rooms ranging from four meters to 475 meters from him. In other experiments, the drawings were made inside the shielded room with Geller in adjacent locations. Examples of drawings Geller was asked to reproduce included a firecracker, a cluster of grapes, a devil, a horse, the solar system, a tree and an envelope. Two SRI researchers- -not otherwise associated with the research-- were submitted Geller's reproductions for judging on a "blind" basis. They matched the target data to the response data with no errors, a chance probability of better than one in a million per judge. In a second series of experiments with Geller involving 100 target pictures of everyday objects, he was not successful. The object was to determine whether direct perception of envelope contents was possible without some person knowing which target picture Geller was attempting to reproduce. The pictures were drawn by an SRI artist, sealed by other SRI personnel in double envelopes containing black cardboard. They were randomly divided into groups of 20 for use in experiments that lasted three days. Each day Geller passed or declined to associate any envelope with a drawing he had made. Both Geller and the researchers agreed that in those (more) Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 4/4/4 cases in which he made drawings, the results did not depart significantly from what would be expected by chance. In another experiment with Geller, he was asked to "guess" the face of a die shaken in a closed steel box. The box was vigorously shaken by one of the experimenters and placed on a table. The position of the die was not known to the researchers. Geller provided the correct answer eight times, the researchers said. The probability that this could have occurred by chance was about one in a million. The experiment was performed ten times but Geller declined to respond two times, saying his perception was not clear. Targ and Puthoff have noted the widespread publicity Geller has received based on reports that he can bend metal by paranormal means. They said their research with him did not confirm this ability. "Although metal bending by Geller has been observed in our laboratory, we have not been able to combine such observations with adequately controlled experiments to obtain data sufficient to support the paranormal hypothesis. " Encouraged by remote viewing experiments with earlier subjects, Targ and Puthoff reported on nine remote-viewing experiments that were conducted with Price as a subject. The SRI team chose natural sites in the San Francisco Bay Area on a double-blind basis, while Price, who remained at SRI in Menlo Park, California, was asked to describe the location and whatever activities were going on there. (more) Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 5/5/5 "Several descriptions yielded significantly correct data pertaining to and descriptive of the target location, " Targ and Puthoff said. While one SRI experimenter was closeted with Price, a second experimenter would obtain a target location from an individual in SRI management not otherwise associated with the research. The targets--chosen from among 100 in the area--were clearly differentiated from each other and within 30 minutes driving time from SRI. The team that had chosen the target proceeded to the location without communicating with the subject. The experimenter remaining behind with Price was not told of the location and questioned the subject, who described his impressions of the location on a tape recorder. "To obtain a numerical evaluation of the accuracy of the remote- viewing experiment, the experimental results were subjected to independent judging on a blind basis by five SRI scientists who were not otherwise associated with the research, " the scientists said. "The judges were asked to match the nine locations, which they independently visited, against the typed manuscripts of the tape-recorded narratives of the remote viewer. " The panel of judges, by a plurality vote, correctly matched six of the nine descriptions and locations, Targ and Puthoff reported. The probability that this could have occurred by chance is one in a billion. "Although Price's descriptions contain inaccuracies, " Targ and Puthoff said, "'the descriptions are sufficiently accurate to permit the judges to (more) Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 Approved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 6/6/6 differentiate among the various targets to the degree indicated. " In a pilot study with six subjects, the scientists sought to determine whether brain wave recordings (EEGs) could be used as an indicator of information transfer between a subject and a remote flashing light. The study was based on the hypothesis that perception may take place below the level of personal awareness. "It was assumed that the application of a remote stimuli would result in responses similar to those obtained under conditions of direct stimulation, " said Targ and Puthoff. "For example, when normal subjects are stimulated with a flashing light their EEG typically shows a decrease in the amplitude of the resting rhythm and a driving of the brain waves at the frequency of the flashes. "We hypothesized that if we stimulated one subject in this manner (a sender), the EEG of another subject in a remote room with no flash present (a receiver), might show changes in alpha activity, and possibly EEG driving similar to that of the sender. The researchers reported they worked initially with six volunteer subjects but eventually concentrated on one subject who responded most dramatically. They then measured the subject's EEG for three days, gathering data from seven sets of 36 trials each with the subject, who was in an opaque, acoustically and electrically-shielded room seven meters away from the sender. Targ and Puthoff reported that while five of the subjects performed at chance levels, the sixth showed consistent and signficiant EEG changes Approved For Release 2001/03/0i124)-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 7Miroved For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6 associated with the presence of the remote stimuli under conditions of sensory shielding. "We hypothesize that the protocol described here may prove to be useful as a screening procedure for latent remote perceptual ability in the general population, " they said. The researchers said that the channel through which information can be received about a remote location appears to be "imperfect, " containing noise along with the signal. They said that while a signal-to-noise ratio cannot yet be determined, the channel nonetheless permits functioning at a useful level of information transfer. Targ and Puthoff said the research constitutes "a first step" toward the goal of uncovering patterns of cause-effect relationships that lend them- selves to analysis and hypothesis in the forms with which are familiar in scientific study. "We have established under known conditions, " they said, "a data base from which departures as a function of physical and psychological variables can be studied in future work. " The research was sponsored by The Foundation for Parasensory Investigation of New York City and the Institute of Noetic Sciences of Palo Alto, California. Stanford Research Institute is an independent, nonprofit organization that performs contract research for worldwide clients in government, business and industry. ### Oct r6kl For Release 2001/03/07 : CIA-RDP96-00787R000100220003-6