Academic journal article The Journal of Parapsychology

Spontaneous Social Behavior Can Implicitly Express ESP Information/Les Comportements Sociaux Spontanes Peuvent Exprimer Implicitement De L'information Extra-sensorielle/Kann Spontanes Sozialverhalten Implizit ASW-Informationen Ausdrucken? /El Comportamiento Social Espontaneo Tal Vez Manifieste De Manera Implicita Informacion Psi

Academic journal article The Journal of Parapsychology

Spontaneous Social Behavior Can Implicitly Express ESP Information/Les Comportements Sociaux Spontanes Peuvent Exprimer Implicitement De L'information Extra-sensorielle/Kann Spontanes Sozialverhalten Implizit ASW-Informationen Ausdrucken? /El Comportamiento Social Espontaneo Tal Vez Manifieste De Manera Implicita Informacion Psi

Article excerpt

The implicit expression of psi information has received increased attention in recent years. For example, Radin (1997, 1998), Bierman and Scholte (2002) and others have demonstrated that a precognitive response to upsetting stimuli can be expressed by faint, unconscious physiological arousal. Bem (2011) has shown that processes of learning and esthetic appraisal may partly express unconscious precognitive information. Palmer (2006) has shown that participants' efforts to find order in strings of numbers may express patterns to which they will be exposed in the near future, and Carpenter, Simmonds-Moore, Moore, and Carpenter (2009, 2012) found that experiences of preferences for pictures varied as a function of extrasensory primes as moderated by theoretically-specified variables.

Theoretical Base

A theory of psi developed by the first author, first sight theory (henceforth called FST; Carpenter, 2004, 2005, 2012) asserts that this sort of implicit expression of psi is an indication that the mind employs psi information normally, unconsciously, and continuously, and uses it as an initiating part of the unconscious formation of all experiences and behavioral choices. From this point of view, psi is not rare, unpredictable, and anomalous; it is reliable and continuously employed while normally invisible. The aim of a psi experiment changes from an attempt to challenge and catch the expression of a rare ability, to an effort to specify procedures and variables in order to reveal an implicit, ongoing process at work. Although this study began when FST was only partially explicated, basic assumptions of FST guided our procedures and hypotheses.

Some Key Parts of First Sight Theory Pertinent to this Study

1. From an FST point of view, psi prepares us for experience and is always expressed implicitly.

FST assumes that the mind engages extrasensory realities and, with them, generates orienting, pre-conscious responses that prepare the individual to quickly apprehend the correct meaning in developing situations and respond to them in the most apt way. A normal function of psi is to prepare us for what will happen next. Psi is assumed to function the same way that subliminal perception does, by guiding the development of conscious experiences and actions, while never being directly available to awareness as conscious knowledge. What may be available to awareness is some of the implicit expressions of this unconscious orienting activity (for example, a relevant bit of imagery or shift in mood or physiological reaction or change in associative tendency).

Even if individuals consciously have in mind a wish to somehow express the content of an extrasensory target, as in a laboratory experiment or mediumistic reading, the expression of psi is inadvertent, because they still have no idea what the evocative information is or where it comes from, or precisely which utterances or other behaviors make reference to the target, or in what ways they might imply it. The situation is the same with the implicit expression of sensory subliminal primes. Experimenters can see the primes at work because they know the hidden stimulus, but experiencers cannot. This has become a familiar fact to psychologists engaged in cognitive, clinical, social, and neuroscience research (Mlodinaw, 2012). FST applies this principle of unconscious cognitive and affective processing to psi.

What we call conscious or explicit psi experiences then are those expressions of psi information that happen to be correctly interpreted as reflecting some reality that is outside the range of sensory experience. Many others presumably pass by uninterpreted and unnoticed.

Since psi engagement is assumed to be implicitly ongoing, FST suggests that many aspects of everyday life should be studied in order to see how psi processes play a part. Spontaneous interpersonal interaction is an obvious candidate for such study. …

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