For a few months now I have been experimenting with Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC). This is something I wanted to do for a long time, and finally got around to actually starting my tests. For the time being, nothing extraordinary to report except a persistent, annoyingly tantalising anomaly in my recordings which – try as I may – I do not manage to explain technically. I will explain (and provide audio examples) in a future article.
For the time being, as an introduction to a mini-series of posts on the subject of ITC, I would like to share a few thoughts about the work of one of the fathers of ITC, Dr Konstantin Raudive. These reflections were triggered by a letter appeared in the last issue of the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research. In the letter, David Ellis (the author of the 1978 book The Mediumship of the Tape Recorder) reiterates his position that “the only thing paranormal about the voices is that anyone believed in them”.
I must say that I find this conclusion quite extraordinary. Mr Ellis is obviously no fool: a trained chemist, he got support from Trinity College, Cambridge, to carry out a research project on the “Raudive voices”, something he says to have studied for 45 years, two of which on a full-time basis. To my surprise, his dismissal of the Raudive experiments is based on two assumptions: a) the voices are stray pieces of radio broadcast picked up by the equipment; and b) the utterances are so unclear that anybody can assign meaning to them according to their own interpretation. My surprise stems from the fact that these assumptions are found in pages one and two of the “Idiotic Skeptic’s Guide to the Paranormal”, respectively, and have been blown out of the water well before the Mr Ellis’ 1978 book.
When I say “idiotic skeptic” I don’t mean to offend anybody. I mean that in order to maintain a certain positions, skeptics sometime have to so thoroughly, utterly, deliberately ignore or misinterpret the evidence that they come across as, well… idiots.
I will discuss the “stray radio signals” hypothesis in one of the next articles. For now, I would like to focus on the supposed lack of clarity of the voices. To do so, I don’t need to do much writing at all. You, my readers, can easily judge for yourself. I am sure that most of you are familiar with the classification of allegedly paranormal voices obtained through ITC:
Class A: Evident without explanation
Class B: May require directions
Class C: May be vaguely experienced; mostly obscured by noise
Now, with this in mind, do please have a careful listen to the record originally published together with Dr Raudive’s 1971 bestselling book Breakthrough.
I recommend that you use headphones as you listen to this very interesting material. And, as I said, decide for yourself if these voices – especially those found in the second half of the 20’ recording – belong to classes A or B, or, as Mr Ellis indicates, are so unclear that anybody could imagine any meaning in them.