A Model for EVP

Tom Butler, 2017
First published in The Journal for Spiritual and Consciousness Studies. November 2017 (ascsi.org/)

Abstract

This is an explanation of the model being considered by the Association TransCommunication (ATransC) to help study Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP). The model is based on lessons learned from instrumental and personal forms of mediumship, theories related to psi functioning and mainstream emerging understanding of the relationship between unconscious and conscious mind. The model is applicable to the study of many forms of transcommunication and may further understanding of mindfulness.

Introduction

EVP are voices detected in electronic equipment that, based on currently understood science, should not exist. They may occur in just about any electronic device capable of processing voice. In fact, they were reportedly found in early wire recorders and now are found in answer machines and cell phones. EVP are typically discovered during review of recordings. They are often interactive, in that they answer questions or comment on activity around the practitioner or an interested observer. It is common for people to recognize the speaker, (Gullà, 2004) leading to the belief EVP are initiated by discarnate loved ones.

For this discussion, it is necessary to at least tentatively agree that there is a nonphysical aspect of reality referred to here as the psi field or etheric. The trans- prefix is used to mean across the etheric-physical interface, as in transcommunication.

Characteristics of etheric space that are important to this model:

  • Etheric space is conceptual, as opposed to the objective nature of the physical.
  • Intention is modeled as the motive force for expression in the etheric.
  • Influence is comparable to the physical concept of kinetic energy.
  • Potential future is comparable to the physical concept of potential energy.

Point of View

Speaking in general terms, the three major contending points of view related to EVP are:

Normalist: This is the Physical Hypothesis point of view which holds that EVP are delusion, fraud or are mundane, mistaken as paranormal. In this view, the necessary science supporting mechanisms for EVP formation are not established, and therefore any reference to paranormal must be pseudoscience. This is being addressed these days as Anomalistic Psychology. (APStaff, 2015) Consciousness is a product of brain and ceases to exist when the brain dies.

Psi+ Normalist: This point of view is the Super-Psi Hypothesis, which is the Physical Hypothesis modified with the contention that the physical universe is permeated by a psi field. (Sudduth, 2009) In parapsychology, psi represents influence associated with psychic functioning. For Psi+ Normalists, if not mundane, delusion or fraud, the information in EVP is produced via psychic access to residual memory or the mind of still living people. This is beginning to be addressed as Exceptional Experiences Psychology. Consciousness is a psi field phenomenon originating from the brain.

Dualist: This point of view is represented by the Survival Hypothesis. It is the point of view that we are immortal personalities temporarily entangled with a human for this lifetime, that our conscious self existed before this lifetime and will continue to exist in a sentient, self-aware form after this lifetime.

Dualists and Psi+ Normalists generally agree that EVP are formed by way of psychokinetic influence of the practitioner on electronic equipment. Studies indicate that it is also possible that information in the message is psychically accessed from a living person’s mind or from residual memory impressed into the psi field. However, the working assumption for Dualists is that some of the messages are communication from discarnate personalities.

Pay close attention to the terminology used in parapsychology. While we expect mainstream academics to reject the Survival Hypothesis, most people actively studying things paranormal seek to prove reported experiences are not paranormal (Normalists). Others seek to show that paranormal phenomena are psychic functioning (Psi+ Normalist). For both, the arrow of creation of consciousness flies from the origin of the human body. For Dualists, the arrow of creation flies from the origin of reality.

Normalist and Psi+ Normalists speak of consciousness as a product of brain. Psi+ Normalists speak of survival as survival of residual memory which is neither sentient nor interactive in the usual sense of communication.

The Trans-Survival Hypothesis described in Your Immortal Self provides the foundation argument on which this model has been designed. (Butler, 2016) (Butler, 2015-3) The trans- prefix is used to distinguish this version to avoid confusion with the usual “Oh and some people think they survive death” version referred to in most parapsychological discussions about psi models.

Model of Consciousness

Be aware that the model of consciousness presented here is derived by an engineer via a technique known as black box analysis. In that, known input and outputs are presented to a hypothetical black box which must contain a set of functions which respond to known inputs to produce known outputs. The functional areas in the Life Field Complex Diagram represent the sort of processes I would design for a computer so as to emulate the actual processes associated with consciousness.

A person trained in consciousness studies would not necessarily recognize the functions or agree that they are reasonable representations. Nevertheless, the diagram has been useful for the study of transcommunication.

Life-Field-Complex

The resulting model, referred to as the Implicit Cosmology, is explained in detail in Your Immortal Self. An earlier version is available on ethericstudies.org under the Concepts tag. It is implicit because it is the consequence of survival based on the Trans-Survival Hypothesis.

Our Natural Habitat

If we existed before this lifetime and will continue to exist after, then the first point to conceptualize is that we are not our body. Think of our body as an avatar. We, as conscious self, share our human’s instincts and the early part of this lifetime is consumed with learning to override them with our more rational awareness. We are taught to think of ourselves as our body, and virtually all environmental cues reinforce this perspective. The task, then, is to learn how to think of ourselves as outside of our body in much the same way we are outside of a virtual reality device.

An important assumption of this model is that we are nonphysical in nature. Our mind is nonphysical. It is useful to think of our brain as a transmitter-receiver converting physical senses of our body to psi senses able to be processed by our mind. This seems to be a necessary consequence of our avatar relationship. We are more in agreement with our pre-lifetime awareness during the dream state.

As is illustrated in the diagram, our life field anatomy is modeled as:

  • Conscious self, which is entangled with our avatar and which is the direct experiencer of our life field (the box marked Physical Point of View).
  • Mostly unconscious mind, which processes sensed environmental information (Attention Complex).
  • Intelligent core (Personality), which includes our purpose and acts as the nexus for our life field.

Think of a field as a zone of influence relating many elements into a single object. The source influence is the nexus. In the conceptual space of the etheric, fields are the building blocks of reality. Life fields are the top field in the hierarchy of fields. (Butler, 2015)

Worldview

The most important functional area in the Attention Complex is Worldview, which functions as a library containing memory, understanding and instincts. At birth, it is populated with human instincts inherited from the Body Mind, and spiritual urges, and a degree of understanding about the nature of reality, inherited from our Personality.

As we mature, worldview is also populated with cultural beliefs and some degree of new understanding as we learn to manage our human instincts. Spiritual instincts involve the urge to turn toward kinds of experiences most likely to provide opportunities for desired understanding. More a nuisance in our youth, for some people, spiritual instincts begin to dominate their actions as they mature.

During transition out of this lifetime, and when we are free of human instincts, it appears we experience a sorting out process as we make sense of the understanding we have gained. It is beyond the scope of this model to explain whether or not we enter into a new venue for learning. Since our purpose appears to be to gain understanding, my speculation is that we will quickly find ourselves in a new venue … physical or not.

The Perceptual Agreement Organizing Principle states: Personality must be in perceptual agreement with the aspect of reality with which it will associate. (Butler, 2016) (Butler, 2015-2) Based on that, each lifetime would presumably result in greater understanding, and therefore, our access to reality would be increased. If true, this would make other venues available to us.

In this model, our actual self is our personality (core intelligence). What we think is our actual self is only our conscious self, which is the experiencing part of our life field. All information into and out of our life field is by way of our Attention Complex (mind). No part of us, core intelligence or experiencer, is immune to the filtering of information or able to avoid the coloring of our intended action caused by worldview. Thus, in this model, the Perceptual Agreement limitation applies to all parts of our life field.

As conscious self, the only way you can change worldview is with the expression of specific intention. As I will explain below, even then, you will only be able to make incremental changes. This is why mindfulness is a life-long process. (Butler, 2014)

Morphic Fields

The idea of what I refer to as our personality acting as our intelligent core is based on a concept proposed by Rupert Sheldrake as the Hypothesis of Formative Causation. (Sheldrake) [paraphrasing] Sheldrake proposes that an organism can be modeled as a top field enfolding a hierarchy of nested fields. Each field is an organizing agent for the formation of a part of the organism. For instance, each cell in the body is organized by a field with instructions specific to that cell’s function in a many to one manner. Larger parts of the organism such as skin, bone and muscle, are represented by fields enfolding subordinate fields, and so on in a hierarchical manner.

The process of organizing the field according to Nature’s habit is referred to by Sheldrake as morphic resonance. Each type of species has a common memory or habit. Creative solutions to environmental challenges are able to change the habit, and thus effect all of the related species.

Nature’s habit is comparable to the worldview functional area in the diagram. Both have considerable momentum, meaning that they resist large changes, but will respond to influences causing small, incremental change.

As a person, we are an immortal personality entangled with human body in an avatar relationship. We share the Attention Complex with our human, and therefore our worldview. But, note that I have modeled the influence of body image on the human body as a link to the body which bypasses the Attention Complex.

The morphic field that organizes our body is based on the memory of its species. Thus, when we seek to influence our body, the model predicts that we must do so by way of the Attention Complex as a well-visualized expression. For instance, worldview is typically programmed to assume a mature body means a worn-out body. Therefore, our task is to change worldview rather than the body image. (In actuality, aging may be a cultural artifact.)

First Sight Theory

First Sight Theory proposed by James Carpenter holds that everything produces a psi signal which we are able to sense. (Carpenter, 2014) He also maintains that our every expression produces a psychokinetic signal which influences our environment according to the intention of the expression. He proposes twelve corollaries to the psi sensing and psychokinetic expression theory that can be used pretty much without modification as the ruleset for operation of the Attention Complex.

Keep in mind that First Sight Theory applies to our mostly unconscious mind. I say mostly unconscious, because our ability to consciously sense and influence functions in the Attention Complex (mind) depends on our lucidity. Lucidity is a measure of how well we have learned to quiet our mind and pay attention to those small impressions radiating from our mental processing.

Corollary 7, the Bidirectionality Corollary, indicates that we unconsciously turn toward or away from information depending on our interest as it has been expressed to our mostly unconscious mind. This corollary is important as a mechanism for our spiritual instincts to guide our unconscious decision making. It is also the mechanism we seek to influence with our conscious intention to produce changes in worldview.

The Nature of Awareness

An important consequence of this model is that we do not directly experience reality. Instead, we experience what our worldview thinks about what we experience. This is not the conjecture of an engineer speculating about phenomena. Mainstream psychology is increasingly reporting findings indicating awareness of stimuli only after the mind processes the information. (Carpenter, 2014) (Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, 2008) (Dockrill, 2016)

If you contemplate your thought processes, you will note that you visualize what you are going to say, compose the wording, and then speak, in that order. This very fast process is triggered by your intention to speak, but we only become aware of what we express as it emerges from our unconscious mind.

Since your mostly unconscious mind pre-processes information, it is simple for it to ignore some information if your worldview is so conditioned. The Attention Limiter function in the Attention Complex is based on the consequences of Corollary 7 in First Sight Theory. In fact, we ignore much of the environmental information coming to us.

Since other minds also send psi information to us, we probably ignore psi information coming from the mind of our loved ones unless our worldview is conditioned to acknowledge it. We are all natural mental mediums. It is just that some of us have a worldview that is conditioned to accept mind-to-mind information. Mindfulness is the tool by which we can take control of that conditioning task to improve lucidity.

Summation of the Model

The consequences of surviving beyond this lifetime, the fact that we are only aware of the results of unconscious processing of environmental information and the fact that we share the database for that processing with our body, must be part of our sense of who we are. The alternative would seem to be self-delusion.

This model, or one like it, must also be part of the explanation for the phenomena we experience. If the model is largely correct, the etheric aspect of who we are is the same as our discarnate communicators. The only difference is our entanglement with a human avatar.

The relationship of our five physical senses to our mind, what we sense psychically and mediumistic communication with a loved one, are only different in intention and the meaning for them we have been conditioned to assign.

The only conscious influence we have on what we sense and express is our intention, and even that is conditional, based on the momentum of our mostly unconscious worldview. The awakening mystics speak of is a person’s emerging realization that there is a difference between personal reality dictated by worldview and actual reality … followed by the determination to align personal reality with actual reality.

As is discussed below, a person (spirit entangled with a human) is the conduit through which paranormal phenomena must pass to cause physical effects. This may be facilitated by our avatar relationship, while our discarnate communicators do not have the physical perspective apparently necessary for their worldview to assign physicality.

Anomalistic and Exceptional Experiences Psychologists are correct in thinking point of view influences experiences, but they ignore the reasons. If we believe in paranormal phenomena, then we are telling our Attention Complex to process environmental information deemed paranormal, rather than rejecting it because it does not agree with worldview. Based on the Principle of Perceptual Agreement, people who accept what their worldview shows them tend to be blind to more of reality than those who question their perception.

Formation of EVP

Using ATransC nomenclature, the most common forms of reported EVP are transform, opportunistic and left message: (Butler, 2010)

Transform EVP: Available noise is transformed into voice. Collection of transform EVP examples is accomplished by using a simple audio recorder. If there is not sufficient ambient noise, it might be added with a small fan. A common practice used in the early days of EVP, but discouraged today, was to tune a radio between stations so as to produce radio static for voice formation. Although the voices might be heard when they are formed, they are typically not heard until playback of the recording.

Transform EVP is the most common form and the only form ATransC considers useful for research. The models being developed to help understand survival and our etheric-physical nature also support the formation of transform EVP.

Opportunistic EVP: This is typically a live voice technique, meaning that a physical person’s speech is recorded and used for background noise. The live voice is thought to be changed between the source and the recorder. Foreign language is usually used.

In the radio-sweep technique, the tuner of a radio is swept to opportunistically produce an output stream formed of the required bits of radio broadcast sound. It appears to be necessary for intended order to be in the form of compelling a person to produce the required sound at the needed moment. (Possible violation of self-determination; think Seth’s “Do not violate.”)

A third technique for opportunistic EVP is storage of pre-recorded voice in a digital buffer, and then the random selection of buffer addresses to produce an output sound stream composed of bits of voice from the pre-recorded voice. A random process in the computer program may be used for selecting storage addresses, but an environmental detector, such as a radio-frequency, magnetic or temperature detector might also be used. EVP are thought to be formed via psychokinetic manipulation of the random process.

After experimentation and review of hundreds of examples, it has become ATransC policy that the frequency of false positives produced by opportunistic techniques makes it virtually useless for any but the most informed research. (Butler, 2011) (Butler, 2012) (Heinen, 2010) (Leary, 2013) (Butler, 2009)

None of the models being developed to help understand survival and our etheric-physical nature support the formation of radio-sweep EVP.

As a compounding factor for evaluation of these techniques by less experienced practitioners, transform EVP may be found in the resulting noise stream inadvertently produced by all such techniques.

Left Message EVP: This category includes messages left on telephone answering machines and phone calls. There is much less known about this form of EVP, as they are typically spontaneous events while transform and opportunistic EVP are typically induced, in that contact is initiated by a practitioner. The mechanisms involved in the formation of left message EVP appears to be the same as for transform EVP.

Stochastic Resonance

The only physical process we have identified that accounts for the physical changes in an audio stream is stochastic amplification. (Abbott, 2009) In that, a small signal can be amplified when mixed with a broad-spectrum noise signal in a nonlinear analog amplifier circuit. This phenomenon is sometimes used in telecommunication as a way of extending the range of transmission between signal regenerators.

In one view of this, a small psychokinetic influence is thought to be amplified via Stochastic amplification as if it were a physical sound stream. The second theory requires an understanding of how the intended order concept is used here.

Intended Order

The Expression Organizing Principle is important to this discussion. It is defined as: Reality is expressed via personality’s attention on an imagined outcome with the intention to make it so. (Butler, 2016) (Butler, 2015-2) If it is true that every act is intentional, then reality is the product of intention or intended order. (This is also the definition used for the creative process.)

We have noted that a random process is involved in most paranormal phenomena. For instance, at least some of the examples of precipitation art require the availability of raw, randomly organized material to be used in the art. Most visual forms of ITC require chaotic noise as the raw stuff for feature formation. Noise is transformed into voice in transform EVP.

The Random Event Generators (REG) used for consciousness research respond to attention by becoming less random. In terms of order, the only difference between an REG signal and audio or visual noise is scale. As I read the physics, the impression of intention on noise by way of stochastic amplification holds for all of these.

Etheric-to-Physical Interface

Etheric space is conceptual while physical space is objective, and so, a transforming process is necessary for one to influence the other. In this model, a concept is defined as a fundamental idea; a root thoughtform from which systems of thought can be derived. Objective means those aspects of our world we can experience with physical senses. Sensed information is transformed into psi signals to which we assign physicality, even though they are not otherwise different from other signals we receive.

An important concept concerning this interface is energy well. In a single-tone sound stream, each next cycle is the same as the preceding cycle. Such a signal is very stable, and conceptually, great stability represents a very deep energy well which is more difficult to influence than a shallow well. This can be seen in EVP formation, as the psi influence necessary to change a single-tone signal appears to be greater than that needed to change a more random signal.

In this model, it is not the size or mass of an object to be concerned with for psychokinetic influence. It is the energy well associated with the idea of its stability. Both views may have the same result, but the difference in focus helps us understand why noise with few variations produce fewer EVP than noise with many perturbations. It appears that noise spikes help initiate voice formation.

Cultural Contamination

A common factor in EVP is apparent coloring of the message according to the practitioner or interested observer’s worldview. In the simplest example, two people will record for EVP in the same room. The one who is not afraid of the dark records useful information and the one who is afraid, records scary messages such as “Get out!” and “I hate you!” We also see this sort of cultural contamination in mental mediumship, as mediums color messages based on personal beliefs.

In fact, we see no evidence in any of our ITC to support the notion of evil in the biblical sense. Yes, we find people behaving poorly, but not kill your soul evil. We also see no evidence or foundation in the metaphysics for earthbound souls. The Principle of Perceptual Agreement is the only organizing factor we have noted that limits our access to reality via self-determination.

The takeaway from the cultural contamination concept is that a discarnate communicator may initiate an EVP but the message is first sensed by the practitioner or interested observer’s mostly unconscious mind as a conceptual thoughtform. There, it is matched up to worldview before being expressed into the physical as intended order. In this way, an intended message of “Please leave me alone” from a discarnate communicator may produce a “Get out” EVP if the practitioner or interested observer expects scary messages.

Cultural contamination is easily seen in EVP. The same model used for EVP is used for mental mediumship or channeling or watching television. A person who has learned to be more lucid by way of mindfulness will probably be subject to less contamination, but in practice, it is a part of the human condition.

Concluding Comments

Emerging understanding about how we think is making it difficult to ignore the part our nonphysical aspect plays in our daily living. This idea of an inner, spiritual self and an outer, physical self is no longer the domain of mystics and New Age believers. While scientists are more willing to say that mental processing comes before conscious awareness, a decidedly etheric concept, they are reluctant to merge their theories with parapsychological models.

Be pragmatic. It is well-established fact that EVP exist as anomalous voices found in electronic equipment. Fraudulent EVP are not EVP; they are fakes. If a person mistakes ambient sounds for EVP, he or she needs training, rather than their error being evidence of delusion. Training is our community’s biggest problem and one only you can fix.

Be clear about the consequences of what you accept as true. Beware what your friends think is true, and examine beliefs of the author whose literature you depend on for learned guidance. Question the consequences of every thought and claim.

EVP are a well-established form of transcommunication. If you have examined it and remain unconvinced, perhaps your source needs more training. Certainly, there are examples that can only be reasonably discounted by ignoring known natural principles.

References

Abbott, Mark D. McDonnell and Derek. 2009. “What Is Stochastic Resonance? Definitions, Misconceptions, Debates, and Its Relevance to Biology.” NCBI, PMC, US National Library of Medicine. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2660436/.

APStaff. 2015. “What is Anomalistic Psychology?” Goldsmiths, University of London. gold.ac.uk/apru/what/.

Butler, Tom and Lisa. 2012. “Using Live Voice Input Files for EVP.” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/live-voice/.

Butler, Tom. 2015. “Etheric Fields.” Etheric Studies. ethericstudies.org/etheric-fields/.

Butler, Tom. 2011. “EVPmaker with Allophones: Where are We Now?” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/evpmaker-study-where-are-we-now/.

Butler, Tom. 2010. “Locating EVP Formation and Detecting False Positives.” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/locating-false-positives/.

Butler, Tom. 2014. “Mindfulness.” Etheric Studies. ethericstudies.org/mindfulness/.

Butler, Tom. 2015-2. “Organizing Principles.” Etheric Studies. ethericstudies.org/organizing-principles/.

Butler, Tom. 2009. “Radio-Sweep: A Case Study.” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/radiosweep-study1/.

Butler, Tom. 2015-3. “Trans-survival Hypothesis.” Etheric Studies. ethericstudies.org/trans-survival-hypothesis/.

Butler, Tom. 2016. Your Immortal Self, Exploring the Mindful Way. AA-EVP Publishing, Reno, NV. ISBN 978-0-9727493-8-1. ethericstudies.org/immortal_self/.

Carpenter, James. 2014. “First Sight: A Model and A Theory of Psi.” James Carpenter.  drjimcarpenter.com/about/documents/FirstSightformindfield.pdf.

Dockrill, Peter. 2016. “Consciousness Occurs in ‘Time Slices’ Lasting Only Milliseconds, Study Suggests.” Science Alert. sciencealert.com/consciousness-occurs-in-time-slices-lasting-only-milliseconds-study-suggests.

Gullà, Daniele. 2004. “Computer–Based Analysis of Supposed Paranormal Voice: The Question of Anomalies Detected and Speaker Identification.” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/gulla-voice-analysis/.

Heinen, Cindy. 2010. “Information Gathering Using EVPmaker With Allophone: A Yearlong Trial.” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/information-gathering-using-evpmaker/.

Leary, Mark. 2013. “A Research Study into the Interpretation of EVP – Three parts.” Association TransCommunication. atransc.org/radiosweep-study2/.

Max-Planck-Gesellschaft. 2008. “Decision-making May Be Surprisingly Unconscious Activity.” Science Daily. sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414145705.htm.

Sheldrake, Rupert PhD. “Morphic Resonance and Morphic Fields.” Rupert Sheldrake. sheldrake.org/research/morphic-resonance/introduction?.

Sudduth, Michael. 2009. “Super-Psi and the Survivalist Interpretation of Mediumship.” Cup of Nirvana. michaelsudduth.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/SurvivalMediumship.pdf.

Sidereal Time EVP Study — call for participation

Tom Butler
2017

Study Registration Button  Study Report Form Button

Introduction

We are asking you to participate in a study to see if the ease with which you collect Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) changes with sidereal time.

Psi functioning studies (ESP, Psychic, Remote Viewing) widely vary in results. This more than expected variability in study results has undermined the repeatability aspect of psi studies and has given support to the illusion and experimenter fraud of skeptics. Parapsychologists have attempted to model this variability with speculation that psi functioning is need-based, that the researcher might have an unexpected psi influence (experimenter effect) or that the practitioner’s ability during a study might be diminished because of boredom (practitioner fatigue). None of these have sufficiently accounted for the variability of results.

James Spottiswoode conducted meta analysis on 1,468 psi functioning free response trials while adjusting the time of day the studies were conducted to Local Sidereal Time (LST, Local Star Time), rather than solar time.(1) A pattern emerged from the analysis showing that psi performance was actually more consistent when LST is considered. As the graph below shows, psi functioning performance peaked around 13.5 LST with a four-fold increase over mean performance.

The Implicit Cosmology predicts psi function and the collection of EVP involve the same processes. (2) However, the linkage between psi functioning and collection of EVP is not empirically well established. Determining if there is one might further our understanding of how EVP works and how sidereal time is involved in psi function.

Background

Sidereal time, also known as star time, is based on the motion of the earth relative to the distant stars rather than with respect to the sun, which is known as solar time. A normal timepiece displays solar time. A sidereal day is about four minutes shorter than a solar day, and a sidereal year is 365.24 solar years.

In 1997, James Spottiswoode published “Apparent Association Between Effect Size in Free Response Anomalous Cognition Experiments and Local Sidereal Time” in the Journal of Scientific Exploration, Vol, 11, No. 2, jsasoc.com/docs/JSE-LST.pdf. (1) The ATransC published an article about the sidereal time findings in the Fall 2002 ATransC NewsJournal. (atransc.org/sidereal-time-psychic-phenomena/)(3)

As of this writing, there has been no definitive explanation as to why or how LST might have an influence on psi functioning.(4) Some studies have shown that the local magnetic field has an effect on psi performance so that decreased intensity of local magnetic field results in increased psi performance. Determining if this magnetic field-psi correlation also applies to EVP will test the Implicit Cosmology.

Sidereal Time EVP Study

The objective of this study is to look for possible relationships between quality and quantity of EVP per session based on sidereal time of day. Magnetic field data are also to be collected if available. Since a large sample is needed, the study is expected to continue for at least a year.

The study is based on the assumption that many people will experience essentially the same effect. As such, and assuming there will be a sufficient number of participants, individuals need not record every day, or even every month.

Study participants are asked to establish a routine of maintaining a record of local solar and sidereal time and local magnetic field at the time of routine EVP sessions. Only Class A and Class B examples are able to be used in this study, and practitioners are asked to use a witness panel. (8)

It is up to the participant to characterize witness panel agreement, if any, and use the report form to register the results of each session. Sessions that do not produce an EVP are just as important to the study, so please report empty sessions as zero Class A and zero Class B.

Please submit the Registration Form below if you wish to participate in this study. Once we have received the registration form via email:

  • You will be assigned a four-digit identification number. That number will be used to track your submissions.
  • We will register you in the Idea Exchange to enable you to ask questions, offer comments and suggestions. The forum is at atransc.org/forum/forum-50.html.

For the duration of this study, you are asked to:

  • In a log, routinely record local time, sidereal time, geomagnetism and approximate location during your EVP recording sessions.
  • Submit a study report for each session. Our objective is to identify trends based on routine, so report the results of any you consider routine, including field investigations and recording for others.
  • Use the Study Report Form to send us a record of each session. Report number of Class A, Class B or a “Zero” for sessions that did not produce Class A or Class B results. Please use a witness panel.(8)
  • Use one form submission for each session and maintain a record of what you submit.

Examples

We are not looking for good examples. The objective is to record the environmental conditions related to good examples. That is the information we will digest into a report indicating if quality and quantity of EVP is influenced by LST and geomagnetism.

Participants are welcomed to post exceptional examples on the Idea Exchange for others to listen to. If you do, please indicate if you are open to critique.

Accepted Form of EVP

Please pay close attention to the kind of example that can be used in this study:

EVP White Paper Button
Download Paper on Recording EVP

  • Radio-sweep technology such as that used in Frank’s Box, Hacks and Ghost Boxes cannot be used for this study.
  • Random access technology such as that used in EVPmaker and devices like the Ovilus cannot be used for this study.
  • EVP formed with any live voice technology such as prerecorded foreign-language, reverse voice track and prerecorded speech randomly selected from a database cannot be used. This includes allophones and phonemes. This includes foreign language recordings as well.
  • Unless there are extenuating circumstances , examples must contain more than one syllable. An exception might be a response to “What is my brother’s name?” of “John,” when “John” is the expected response. However, a “John” response to “Who is here?” is not acceptable.
  • It is okay if the example is in more than one voice.
  • Examples should be Type I Class A or Class B.(7)
  • Examples should be heard and understood by a majority of a witness panel. (8)

Please use the Idea Exchange if you have questions about these requirements.

Since we are not asking for the actual recording, it is necessary that we depend on your self-reporting. However, please do retain all examples you report on, as we may be asked to supply all raw data for further study.

 

LST Chart

Resources

Of course, we are available to answer your questions. Unless you have a personal issue, please use the Idea Exchange.

It looks like the Magnetic Field Calculator at ngdc.noaa.gov/geomag-web/#igrfgrid is useful. If you wish to use a smartphone app, there is also a Citizen Scientist project being conducted by NOAA testing cellphones for geomagnetic measurements here: ngdc.noaa.gov/geomag/crowdmag.shtml.  They provide both an Android and iphone app.

I am currently trying out the Sidereal Clock app for Android at play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=bz.bsb.sidereal&hl=en

Download a Sidereal Clock for Your Desktop external.informer.com/radiosky.com/sidclockdownload.html.


Use this form to begin the process of registering you as a participant in this study.

Use this form to participate in the Sidereal Time EVP Study. We will respond by email with an identification number to be used when you submit EVP details for the study.



Please use this form to submit study reports.

References

  1. Spottiswoode, S. James P. “Apparent Association Between Effect Size in Free Response Anomalous Cognition Experiments and Local Sidereal Time.” The Journal of Scientific Exploration. Society for Scientific Exploration. 1997. jsasoc.com/docs/JSE-LST.pdf
  2. Butler, Tom. Implicit Cosmology. Etheric Studies. 2016. ethericstudies.org/implicit-cosmology/
  3. Butler, Tom and Lisa. “Sidereal Time and Psychic Phenomena.” Association TransCommunication. 2002. atransc.org/sidereal-time-psychic-phenomena/.
  4. Ryan, Adrian. “Physical Correlates of Psi.” Parapsychology: A Handbook for the 21st Century. Editors, Etzel Cardeña, John Palmer and David Marcusson-Clavertz, McFarland. 2015.  ISBN 978-0-7864-7916-0. Ebook ISBN 978-1-4766-2105-0. Amazon.com
  5. Butler, Tom. The Formation of EVP. Association TransCommunication. 2009. atransc.org/evp-formation/.
  6. Butler, Tom. ATransC White Paper on Transcommunication. Association TransCommunication, 2014. atransc.org/itc-white-paper/.
  7. Butler, Tom. Classifying Phenomena. Etheric Studies. 2016. ethericstudies.org/classifying-phenomena/.
  8. Butler, Tom (et al). EVP Witness Panel. Etheric Studies. 2013. ethericstudies.org/witness-panel/.

ATransC NewsJournals

newsjournal-big

The ATransC NewsJournal Archive is below

Past ATransC NewsJournals are now available in the PDF archive below. There are a total of 129 quarterly newsletter beginning with Sarah Estep’s Spring 1982 issue (1-1). All of the 72 issues Sarah published up to Winter 2000 are now in the archive.

The Butler’s assumed leadership of the Association in 2000 and resumed publication of the newsletter with the Summer 2000 (19-2) issue.  The Spring 2014 (33-1) issue was the final ATransC NewsJournal and the 57th published  by the Butlers. All are in the archive.

You will see an evolution in quality and appearance in the publications as Sarah, and then the Butlers gained experience. You will also notice that spelling and sentence structure vastly improved when Loretta Woodward agreed to proofread the work.

The NewsJournals are shown as they were distributed to members. Please be mindful that most content is under the Creative Commons use license with the exception of work provided by members. Except for short quotes. it is best that you ask before use to be sure it is not protected by copyright.

Search Tool

Use the website  search tool in the top-right column to look for items on the website. In some instances, the search may turn up a newsletter. In that case, open the newsletter and use the PDF search tool to search the newsletter.

There is also a Spirit Voices gallery here.

Hint: Set your browser to Review PDF Files with the Browser, rather than Download.

browse-sv-archive

Video-Loop, Visual ITC Recording Technique

by Tom Butler, 2010
Also see Butler ITC Gallery 2Butler ITC Gallery 2,  Butler ITC Gallery 3,
and Perception of Visual ITC Images

A Brief Discussion of the Pictures

 

The ITC images described by Lisa in Our First ITC Images provides an interesting study in ITC photography. The initial video was taken with a Cannon 8mm ES2000 analog camcorder set about three feet from a Sony KV20TS32, 20 inch Trinitron color TV. The camera was focused just beyond the screen surface and the composite video out of the camera was connected to the video input of the TV so that the camera was “seeing” its output in a video loop. The camera was zoomed so that about five inches of the screen was revealed to the camera.

An example of the video loop is shown above. It is a highly compressed file and the phenomenal features normally seen in the higher resolution NTSC format are not as clear. Even so, move the track market to 01, 06 and 08 seconds and look for phenomenal features. An analog camera and monitor has been most effective for us. We adjust the camera for a balance between very sharp-pixilated display and a too-soft display. Experiment to find that balance. Look for the features in the medium bright areas.

The resulting video clip was loaded into a computer and Pinnacle Systems Studio DC10 Plus was used for review. The video was examined frame by frame and interesting frames were captured as individual pictures. Figure 1 is an example of these “grabbed” video frames. Because we were focused on an area of the screen that had a lot of optical texture, the resulting frames tended to be dark. The screen was also flashing from light to dark. While this seems to have given us ITC, it has also frustrated our attempts to display the images with our method of printing this newsletter.

We sent two of the more interesting frames to member, Erland Babcock, who edited them to produce Figure 2. Erland uses editing software that came with his Toshiba PDR-M70 digital camera and it is more effective than any of the editors we use. Lisa had seen other possibilities in Figure 1, but I was focused on what looks like a full-bust image of a man in the middle of the frame. If you look at the upper left quadrant of the Figure 1, you can see that I have highlighted what looks like a hat. Figure 2 is that region enlarged and enhanced. With this image, and other renditions not shown, you can see a man wearing a hat. It looks like he has a full beard. There is evidence of blue sky above him and shrubbery at his right. His shoulders may also be visible.

It is important to note that the resolution of the original frame should not support the fine shading of the shape of the hat. In other words, I believe that the ITC image has higher resolution than the original frame. Also, if this were an illusion, we would expect to more often see other familiar objects. Erland has pointed out to us that he has captured pastoral scenes and what looks like aerial views of land and water. But we are mostly collecting faces, which raises the question again, why faces, why whole faces and who are they?

We have included an image showing a full head of a person in Figure 3. The original frame was almost completely black, so what is shown here is an enhancement. It is hard to tell, but the person looks a lot like an extraterrestrial standing in front of a round window.

   techniques_itc1_2  techniques_itc1_5
Figure 1

A full video frame

Figure 2

This picture was cropped from the frame in Figure 1 from the area marked with a white box. The intensity and contrast has been changed in a photo editor to make the feature more visible. No color has been added.

Figure 3

A feature that has been cropped from a different video frame that was almost black before the intensity was changed in a photo editor.

 

 butler_faces_1  
Figure 4

Typical texture in video frame when the camera is three to five inches from the television screen. Notice that you can see the texture of the pixels. All of the examples in Butler Gallery 1 and 2 in the Examples pages were collected with the camera very close to the screen. You will notice that the pixels tend to dominate the features. (Please note that the framer has been rotated 90 degrees.

Figure 5

Typical texture in video frame when the camera about three feet from the television screen. Notice that you do not see the texture of the pixels. All of the examples in Butler Gallery 3 in the Examples pages were collected with the camera three feet from the screen. You will notice that the features tend to be softer in texture.

Steps in Recording Video-Loop ITC

We use what is known as the Schreiber method for Video ITC. The technique of connecting the output of a video camera to the input of a television set, and then taping the video noise that can be seen on the television screen, was apparently first developed for Schreiber by Martin Wenzel.

(c)aaevp2004_video_setup

1.Preparing the Video Loop: Position the camera about three feet in front of the television screen. Connect the Video-Out of the Camera to Video-In of the television and select Video-In on the television set. Aim the camera at the television set and slowly adjust the focus, and zoom until the dark to light flashing is visible on the television screen, with cloudy or foggy texture in various colors during the bright flashes. The focus should be six to twelve inches past the surface of the screen when the equipment is ready to record. The most important objective is to see swirling clouds.

  1. Preparing Yourself: Follow the same preparatory process you use for EVP sessions. Remember that there are nonphysical entities who are present and able to “witness” your activity. Consider using the same music each time as a “signature” or “signpost,” indicating that preparation for a session is underway. Also consider conducting a short meditation or prayer.

After meditation, we change from music to the background sound that we use for EVP. The background sound of white noise is used because we always listen to the video sound track. Also, an IC recorder is usually recording during the sessions. This, of course, is optional. Speaking out loud, we talk to our team about the last session and discuss the various successes or failures of that experiment. Asking for their assistance in bringing the images through, we announce that we are going to begin the experiment. This is all done just as if they were standing in the room with us. Each session brings different discussions and questions. Ask for information on how to improve the experiments, and for specific people to show themselves in the video.

The experimenter is part of the circuit and we feel that meditation and/or prayer helps bring the experimenter into a more balanced state. This helps to focus the experimenter’s intention and better helps those on the other side create a link to the experimenter.

  1. Conducting the Experiment: Speaking out loud, tell the entities that you are about to begin recording. State what you wish to see in your video frames, and perhaps, offer feedback about the previous experiment. Turn on the equipment and wait a few seconds for the feedback loop to stabilize. Record for about thirty seconds. You may record longer, but remember that the camera will record around twenty-nine frames a second, and that thirty seconds represents a large number of frames. Turn off the video camera and verbally thank the entities for their help.
  2. Analysis of Video: Transfer the video onto a computer. You can alternatively include the computer in the recording circuit during the experiment and record the video with the computer rather than with the camera. Once in the computer, examine each frame of the video and “grab” frames that have optical texture, such as blotches of color. Examine each grabbed frame in a photo editor as if it were a photograph. Use magnification, intensity changes and rotations while looking for features.

We highly recommend that you read the section about Video ITC in the book, There is no Death and There are No Dead.

ATransC White Paper on Transcommunication

with Emphasis on Electronic Voice Phenomena
by Tom and Lisa Butler, Revised April 2017

EVP White Paper Button

Overview

by-nc-saThis is a brief overview of what is currently known (by the ATransC Directors) about transcommunication with an emphasis on Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP). It is written by Tom Butler and published by Association TransCommunication (ATransC). Please feel free to share this under the Creative Commons 3.0 License

This explanation is written in terms of the Trans-Survival Hypothesis.1 It depends on current parapsychological research (psi, psi-field and survival)2 and the accumulated evidence provided by the citizen scientists of the paranormalist community.3

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Also consider registering in the public section of the Idea Exchange and ask your questions there.

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Consider participating in the Sidereal Time EVP Study. You are asked to report local sidereal time (star time) for the time of your Class A and Class B transform EVP.

Participate LST Study

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Content

Transcommunication

Transcommunication can be defined as a trans-etheric influence that is intended to be communication; trans-etheric communication. The “trans-“ prefix denotes across the etheric-physical interface. Here, “etheric” is used to designate the nonphysical aspect of reality. Virtually all reported paranormal phenomena are thought to involve some form of trans-etheric influence. Not all trans-etheric influences are considered communication. Some, such as residual energy phenomena are thought to simply happen without regard to who is experiencing the event.

Term: Psi

Psi is a term used in parapsychology denote an as yet unexplained form of information access or influence. Psi is considered more neutral than such terms as ESP and mind-matter interaction; psi, psychic, and psychical are synonyms. Some form of subtle or nonphysical energy field, referred to as a psi field, is thought to permeate the physical universe. As it is modeled, the psi field provides the means of transmitting information related to psi functioning (psychic) and the influence of psychokinesis in a here is everywhere (nonlocal) manner. See EVP are “Echoes of the Past” or Residual Energy below.

To simplify communication, psi and psi field are used in ATransC literature as synonymous with etheric (the greater reality). Since mind is considered nonphysical, psi functioning is used to mean any form of mental perception or mental expression when not speaking of normal physical senses and abilities. An important difference in usage is that the ATransC considers nonlocal to mean everywhere is here, while parapsychologists us it in the sense of here is everywhere.

Term: ITC

 7csocrates2010-011810_011_contrast     1csocrates2010-111609_18_contrast
Two examples of visual ITC produced recorded by the Socrates Circle by generating optical-frequency noise using a video feedback loop. Left is the profile of a person looking to your left. Right is the head of a dog looking slightly to your left.

Ernst Senkowski4 coined the term, Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC) to describe “ … meaningful anomalies including extraordinary voices, computer text, recorded images and images found on video displays suggestive of a continuance of life after death.” Note that After Death Communication (ADC) and mediumship should be considered subsets of transcommunication but are not necessarily ITC. (Because of common use in this field, terms with a “trans-“ prefix are often used without the hyphen.)

History

Speculation about EVP can be traced back to the 1920s. In a Scientific American5 interview, Thomas Edison was quizzed on his views regarding contacting the dead. Edison said that it might be “possible to construct an apparatus which will be so delicate that, if there are personalities in another existence or sphere who wish to get in touch with us in this existence or sphere, this apparatus will at least give them a better opportunity to express themselves than the tilting tables and raps and Ouija boards and mediums and the other crude methods now purported to be the only means of communication.” There is no indication that Edison designed or tried to construct such a device.6

Did Edison make a machine that could talk to the dead?

This seems to be another tall tale that Edison pulled on a reporter. In 1920 Edison told the reporter, B.F. Forbes, that he was working on a machine that could make contact with the spirits of the dead. Newspapers all over the world picked up this story. After a few years, Edison admitted that he had made the whole thing up. Today at Edison National Historic Site, we take care of over five million pages of documents. None of them mention such an experiment.

From: Edison National Historic Site, home.nps.gov/edis/faqs.htm.
[The site has removed this FAQ.]

In 1936, Attila von Szalay, A Californian, started capturing paranormal voices on phonograph records and then in the mid-1950s he was joined by Raymond Bayless. Together they acquired many evidential EVP on their new tape recorders and they published their findings in the Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research.7

The person credited with bringing EVP to the public is Friedrich Jürgenson, a Russian-born Swedish film producer. In 1959, after recording birdsong on his tape recorder, Jürgenson heard on playback what appeared to be a human voice. Subsequent recordings contained a message which seemed to be coming from his dead mother.8

Konstantin Raudive is credited for learning about EVP as a student of Jürgenson and introducing EVP to the English-speaking world with the Colin Smythe publication of the English-language Breakthrough9

Colin Smyth is credited with coining the term, “Electronic Voice Phenomena” (EVP) as a more inclusive alternative to “Raudive Voices,” as the voices recorded by Raudive were referred to at the time.10

In 1982, Sarah Estep founded the American Association of Electronic Voice Phenomena. She continued to publish quarterly newsletters until 2000, at which time Tom and Lisa Butler assumed leadership. In 2010, the name of the organization was changed to Association TransCommunication (ATransC) to account for the international nature of membership and to acknowledge the need to study all forms of transcommunication.

Theories Proposed to Explain Observed ITC Phenomena

The existence of EVP is not realistically contested. Any reasonably capable person with a device capable of recording audio can expect to eventually record an understandable utterance that cannot be explained with known science. The same can be said for some forms of visual ITC. A workable protocol for recording EVP can be found in the Techniques section of ATransC.org (Also below in Recording for EVP). The real questions are what or who is causing them (if appropriate) and how they are caused.

It will be helpful if you understand the three dominant models used to explain the nature of reality. (There is a detailed discussion of these hypotheses in the Trans-survival Hypothesis essay.

physical-universeThe Physical Universe Hypothesis

This is the mainstream science view and what is taught in school.

  • All that exists is the physical universe.
  • The universe has evolved from a singularity into what it is today.
  • Life has evolved on earth from a primordial soup into what it is today.
  • Mind has evolved as a product of brain which is a product of evolution.
  • Memory is an artifact of mind.
  • When the brain dies, mind and memory cease to exist.
  • People have five senses: smell, sight, hearing touch and taste.

To simplify conversation, people who think the Physical Universe Hypothesis is correct can be described as Normalists. Parapsychologists who lean toward the Physical Universe Hypothesis often work under the banner of Anomalistic Psychology, 41 which holds that reported paranormal experiences are actually ordinary-world experiences mistaken as paranormal. In effect, these parapsychologists are debunkers determined to find a normal explanation for all psi and survival-related phenomena.

The Super-Psi Hypothesis

super-psi-hypothesisThis is the parapsychological view in which psi functioning is normal. There is a convergence in thought between the mainstream and parapsychology as physical and psychology research increasingly agrees with the existence of something like psi and a psi field. This view is known as the Super-psi Hypothesis when extreme instances of psi functioning must be considered.

  • All that exists is the physical universe.
  • The universe may have evolved from a singularity into what it is today.
  • A subtle energy (psi) field permeates all of physical reality.
  • Life has evolved on earth from a primordial soup into what it is today.
  • Mind exists in the psi field and continues beyond death of the brain as differentiated, residual energy.
  • Brain is a transmitter/receiver for mind.
  • Thought, memory and emotions are retained in the psi field.
  • People have five senses that are informed by impressions from the psi field.

To simplify conversation, people who think the Super-Psi Hypothesis is correct are described here as Psi+ Normalists. Parapsychologists who lean toward the Super-Psi Hypothesis are increasingly working under the banner of Exceptional Experiences Psychology, 42 which holds that reported paranormal experiences may be ordinary-world experiences mistaken as paranormal but may also be evidence of psi. In effect, these parapsychologists are debunkers determined to find a normal or psi explanation for all psi and survival-related phenomena.

It is important to be aware of the different models for consciousness and survival spoken of in the literature. Here is a shorthand version of the Notes on Consciousness article in EthericStudies.org. 37

  1. Local Biological Consciousness: Based on the assumption that the physical is all there is and consciousness is a product of some still unknown biological process.
  2. Nonlocal Biological Consciousness: This is the same as Local Biological Consciousness but extends outside of the body into the psi field.
  3. Nonlocal, Non-Biological Consciousness: Consciousness is a sentient, self-aware life form which coexists with the organism during a physical lifetime experience.

There are three theories modeling the evolution for consciousness:

  1. Biological Evolution: As a biological product, consciousness evolved with the organism.
  2. Survived Biological Evolution: As a biological product, consciousness evolved with the organism, but as a survived form of consciousness which has evolved alongside the organism.
  3. Etheric Origin of Consciousness –:

When mainstream academics speak of consciousness, they are referring to 1a. Most Normalist parapsychologists refer to 2a. Most Psi+ Normalist parapsychologists refer to 2b. Most layperson paranormalists refer to 3c.

As a general (but probably always true) statement, people discussing survival in the context of quantum theory are referring to 1a, 1b or 2a, 2b.

The Survival Hypothesis

trans-survival-hypothesisThis is an alternative view that has evolved out of etheric studies. It is not accepted by mainstream science and only conditionally by parapsychology.

  • There is a greater reality of which the physical universe is an aspect.
  • The psi field is an aspect of a greater reality.
  • The greater reality is composed of etheric energy with a spectrum of characteristics (aspects) of which psi is one.
  • Mind with its thoughts, memories and emotions has evolved in the greater reality and continues to exist beyond death of the brain.
  • For a lifetime, mind and brain are entangled to produce a physical-etheric link.
  • During a lifetime, mind is expressed as consciousness and an etheric personality (unconscious).
  • People have five senses that are informed by impressions from the psi field by way of personality to conscious self.1

People who think the Survival Hypothesis is correct can be described here as Dualists. Some Psi+ Normalists accept that mind is different from body. The distinction is that Dualists think mind preceded body and continues after the body in a sentient form. Psi+ Normalists think mind is a product of body, and sentience ceases when the body dies. For them, all evidence of survival is just evidence of survived memory.

Physical Explanations

Not all skeptical complaints are wrong. Paranormalists need to understand the alternative explanations and be willing to discard possible paranormal phenomena in order to not be self-deluded.

Paranormal is and is not

The experiences referred to as paranormal phenomena are very rare. Yes, mind is thought to be in the etheric, and if so, all of our sensing and expressions are via psi influences. But since we are so well conditioned to think we are our body, we are seldom aware of this psi functioning as being more than our five physical senses. Paranormal means those experiences that are outside of the normal and thought to be related to extraordinary human ability and survived personality.

The first measure of any paranormal experience is that it must able to be witnessed by others, either directly such as hearing the recording thought to be of a discarnate person’s voice, or indirectly, by way of predictive evidence such as a mental medium’s correct description of a discarnate loved one.

Because of the way we process information,40 It is very difficult for us to tell which of our thoughts are normal and which are paranormal. For instance, the naturally occurring tendency for us to experience the expected, and the way our unconscious mind tends to try to please our conscious desires, easily leads to perception that seems to be paranormal, but that is concocted by our mind.

Having confirmation from two or more witnesses is no guarantee the experience is paranormal, but it is at least a useful first filter. It is important that witnesses do not know what to expect and are not captive in a situation in which they unconsciously want to please the practitioner. (There is strong evidence that people are sometimes so eager to please that they will convince themselves of the truth of something that is not true.)

To make this point clear, if phenomena is not able to be witnessed, it should not be considered paranormal. If it cannot be witnessed, then it is not paranormal in the sense that paranormal is intended. If it is thought to be paranormal but cannot be witnessed, then it must be considered a miss (incorrect psychic/mediumistic message), illusion (perceptual/mental malfunction), or misdirection (fraud, trick).

Normal Mistaken as Paranormal

Probably the most obvious explanation is that the voices are recordings of stray radio signals. Inexpensive portable electronic equipment designed record audio signals, such as handheld audio recorders, are able to detect and record stray radio signals under certain conditions. This is not normally a problem, but it is possible and should be considered when evaluating possible EVP.

The proliferation of digital technology is making it less likely that radio signals might be mistaken as EVP. AM radio is about the last signal source that a voice recorder can detect so that the broadcast information can be understood. If the signal is in a digital format, it must be converted to analog to be understood and equipment not intended to decode the message will not do this. This is true of digital recorders as well. If you wish to assure yourself that EVP are not radio signals, consider the article: Eliminating Radio Frequency Contamination for EVP23

It is usually the near zero level of the recorded signal that becomes contaminated by stray radio signals, and the normally inaudible contamination can become audible with amplification.

Simple content analysis of EVP is usually sufficient to establish that the utterance in question is unlikely to be crosstalk or unnoticed voices from people in the room. Assuming the practitioner is not attempting to provide scientific evidence, it is usually adequate to note whether or not the utterances are complete statements, if they are appropriate to the circumstances and if they are understandable. If they were stray radio or television signals, they would contain the telltale signs of commercial broadcast, they would often be partial statements and they would usually be nonsensical, considering the circumstance. Until you have gained confidence in the validity of EVP you record, it is important to ask friends to be your listening panel. The Witness Panel draft best practice will help.29

It is also a best practice to use a second audio recording process as a control for situations that might have unnoticed voices in the room or stray radio. Please review Control Recorder for EVP30 The need for background sound in transform EVP makes it less likely that a higher quality recorder will pick up an EVP. This makes the use of a video recorder to make a visual record of fieldwork an excellent technique for making a control recording of the session.

Imagination of the Experiencer

This is an important possible explanation for any form of phenomena involving unexpected sounds, images or events. Modern technology is capable of producing a wide variety of unexpected results (mundane or technology artifacts). A person can easily mistake an artifact as phenomenal unless the person is an expert in the use of that technology. For instance, when used in an automatic mode, and with a flash, modern cameras often keep the shutter open much longer than the user realizes. A characteristic of film and digital image detectors referred to as latency will cause a moving camera to image a bright light, such as a streetlight or the camera flash reflected from a bright object in the scene, much quicker than a poorly illuminated background. This can result in a ghostly streak of light in a photograph while the background scene seems to indicate that the camera never moved.

(cc)aaevp2006-audacity_noise_levels_web
Figure illustrating a sound track with the utterance, “Betty’s in there.” A workable level for background sound used in voice formation is shown. The increase in amplitude of the voice is believed to be due to the accumulation of energy prior to formation of the utterance. This is transform EVP.

 

The point is that such photographic artifacts are mundane, yet they are often offered as evidence of ghosts. In the same way, sounds in an audio recording can be made by very mundane influences but yet sound very paranormal. For instance, it is common for a person to take a breath of air just before speaking, and the sound of that breath can be mistaken as an EVP when a person is examining every little sound in the recording.

All aspects of etheric studies are plagued by what is generally termed the lack of critical thinking amongst people seeking to experience these phenomena. In view of the complexity of the involved technologies, this is a natural result.

Recent study is indicating that the expectations of practitioners and witnesses can have an influence on how sound is experienced. In the Phantom Voices study,31 nearly half of the participants reported hearing some form of voice in two audio files that were clearly marked as only containing noise and no voice. A clever practitioner might describe simple noise as voice and provide an explanation as to how those voices are meaningful, and distressingly, witnesses will too often agree. This characteristic of EVP is still being studied, but what is clear is that all of us must be very careful to manage expectations and cultural influences. EVP is objective evidence and that means that other people can hear the same thing without coaching. The inverse of this is also true. Concepts such as inattentional blindness and incredulity blindness 39 suggest that people who have a strong disbelief in things paranormal are less likely to be able to experience EVP.

life-field-complex

Psi Explanations

EVP are not necessarily initiated by a discarnate personality. As shown in the Life Field Complex Diagram discussed in Personality-Centric Perspective essay,40 a person (etheric personality entangled with a human in an avatar relationship) is required for trans-etheric influences. As such, the question becomes which personality expressed the initial intention. The following are arguments reasonably posed by Psi+ Normalists.

Thoughts of the Practitioner

Once the “normal” explanations have been eliminated, there remains the possibility that the voices are paranormal but that they are caused by a physical person. It is here that the argument changes from “Is EVP real” to “Who is talking?”

A number of experiments have been conducted that did indicate it is possible to record the thoughts of people known to be still in the physical.25 Current thinking is that the conscious aspect of a person is what survives physical death, and when a still living person is in some way disassociated from the physical body, his or her conscious self is much the same as the etheric communicator. In other words, it is predicted that the thoughts of a living person should be able to be recorded in EVP.

While many of the observed characteristics of EVP could be explained as thoughts of the living, on occasion, a person will record the voice of a person, say John, who is later shown to be the discarnate son of a person who had not yet joined the Association. In subsequent conversations, John’s voice is recognized saying the sort of things John would have said while in the flesh. It is this sort of evidence that reminds us that EVP are a complex group of phenomena and no single explanation is likely to be found.

EVP are “Echoes of the Past” or Residual Energy

The Super-Psi Hypothesis27 models that the mind is a product of the brain and the information being accessed via EVP, and the other forms of apparent etheric-to-physical influences, are either caused by the practitioner or some other physical agent.

Physicist David Bohm and neurophysiologist Karl Pribram proposed a field of energy that underlies all of reality.32 This field of energy, referred to in parapsychology as the psi field, is thought to have three characteristics that might account for the observed etheric-to-physical phenomena. It is thought to behave according to quantum principles, especially that of entanglement which shows that, once objects have become associated at a quantum level, influencing one object will have a similar influence on the other, even though it may be very far away in distance and in time.

The second characteristic of the psi field is that this field exhibits the character of nonlocality, meaning that information in it is equally available from any place in the field. This characteristic is required to explain such phenomena as a remote viewer accessing information that is miles away and a medium supposedly getting information from discarnate entities (the Super-Psi explanation is that the medium is finding the information in someone’s memory).

The third characteristic of this field is that it retains the residual energy of consciousness, and therefore contains all that was ever known, thought and experienced. It is thought that this residual energy provides the psychically gathered information. An alternative version of this is that if the information is in someone’s memory, then it is accessible to others, at least subconsciously.

For the Trans-Survival Hypothesis, the greater reality is referred to as the etheric, and the psi field as an aspect of the etheric. In that way, survival studies benefits from psi studies but does not otherwise accept the idea that survival is actually survived residual energy of consciousness.

Survival Explanation

You have probably noticed by now that that Survival Hypothesis is not a simple concept or decisively true or not. During the development of the Implicit Cosmology,38 it became obvious to me that the science decisively shows that mind is not physical. While there remains a very small possibility that mind is a product of brain, that perspective is increasingly unsupportable.

Here is an important perspective for you to consider. If you think something is true, then it is necessary to consider the implications of that truth. In this perspective, the truth is actually only a belief if the implications are not reasonable. If mind if not brain, then mind must be nonphysical (referred to here as etheric). That means that mind is not electrical or magnetic, as both are physical phenomena. It means that mind must somehow communicate information with body. That is, signals from your five senses must be converted from bio-electric information to etheric information, and in turn, etheric information must be converted to bio-electric information to influence the body.

The implication is that all of mind’s information exchange is etheric (defined in parapsychology as psi functioning). In a very real sense, and assuming mind is not brain, your relationship with your physical body is the relationship of your conscious self (an etheric life form) with your body (a biological product of this planet). While there may be alternative models, this is the one that seems to best explain the experience of being a person (etheric personality entangled with a human body for a lifetime).

One model that looks a lot like survival argues that mind is a product of brain which exist sin the psi field, and that originated when life formed on this planet. As the argument goes, each instance of life contributed to the mind field, thus evolving mind along with body. I tried to model this theory with currently understood science and reported experiences, but it fails to explain the sentient, individual nature of survived personality.

And so, survival means existence of conscious self, prior to a lifetime as a person, and continuing after this lifetime in a conscious, individual sentient form.

Evidence of Survival

Considering the explanation about what is and what is not paranormal (above), unless verifiable information can be brought back that is not in someone’s memory, out-of-body and near-death experiences are not paranormal in the sense discussed in this paper. This is not to say that they are not real, it is just that they are very difficult to distinguish from normal human the ability to imagine experiences. Reincarnation is a little more convincing, but the ability to witness evidence is still an important measure of paranormality.

A concept you need to become familiar with is the idea of cultural contamination. In that, a practitioner or an interested observer might color produced phenomena, such as EVP or mental mediumship messages, with information in worldview. Worldview is the filter through which perception if filtered. The supporting mental processes will attempt to explain unfamiliar information with existing information in worldview. As such, a genuine message from a discarnate loved one of, say, “I am always with you,” might be expressed in an EVP or mediumistic message as “I am standing beside you.” In fact, the practitioner’s expectation that the loved one is near might produce the message, even if the loved one is not.

Cultural contamination always colors instrumentally or personally delivered messages. There is just no way to avoid that fact. A well-trained practitioner should know how to minimize the coloring, but the reality of it is that witness panels are our best defense against delusion. We must be determined to avoid false positives.

With that said, each form of paranormal phenomena inherits a degree of credibility from the other forms. A good example of this is when a mental medium announces the presence of Uncle John, and an EVP with Uncle John’s voice is recorded at the same time. The accumulation of evidence that EVP are initiated by discarnate personality gives you reason to accept at least some EVP as evidence of survival.

Because of cultural contamination, and the fact that information from a mind still entangled in a lifetime looks a lot like information from a discarnate mind, the Super-Psi Hypothesis can be at least partially used to explain transcommunication. To discount the Super-Psi Hypothesis, the task is to find an example containing information that was not known by any living person when it was formed. The one example we have access to is Marth Copeland’s “Doja, no!”

Martha’s daughter, Cathy, transitioned as a young woman and Martha assumed care for her dog named Doja. Martha had accidentally left Dojo in the house when she left to go shopping. It was her habit at the time to always leave her voice activated digital recorder turned on, and so, it was also left on in the house with the dog. No one was in the house except for the animals. Dojo tore up a potted plant and made a great mess. You can hear an EVP from Cathy as she scolded the dog saying, “Doja, no!” 43

Again, the idea that paranormal phenomena inherits credibility from more credible phenomena applies here. The best proof of the Super-Psi Hypothesis is EVP. The Best proof of Survival are some examples of EVP and research supporting psi functioning theory.

Error on the Side of the Mundane

Always the first explanations that should be considered are those that involve only normal phenomena. These include mundane artifacts mistaken as paranormal, fraud and illusion. Of course, if any of these explain the reported experience, then it is not considered transcommunication. There is much that is not known about the physical world and known physical principles might eventually explain these phenomena.

Assuming there are no known mundane explanations, the Super-Psi Hypothesis2, 27 should be considered. Super-psi proposes that these phenomena are caused by information that has been somehow recorded into the psi field and are able to be detected by our senses and instruments. In other words, apparent survival phenomena are only evidence of memories or echoes of the past.

The Survival Hypothesis2 should be considered last. After considerable examination of the evidence, the ATransC officially accepts survival as a demonstrated fact. It has adopted a working version of the Survival Hypothesis referred to as the Trans-Survival Hypothesis as the theory thought to best explain the evidence.

The ATransC has adopted a working version of the Survival Hypothesis referred to as the Trans-Survival Hypothesis. It is the theory thought to best explain the evidence. The essay “Implicit Cosmology” is the starting point for a thorough discussion of the subject.1 The essay “Implicit Cosmology” is the starting point for a thorough discussion of the subject.

Every instance of phenomena is reviewed by the ATransC directors in terms of “is it mundane, is it just super-psi or is it survival?” We are always mindful that some very well informed and intelligent people are watching your every move to find ways to show we are deluded. This is not about science or facts so much as it is about beliefs. Our skeptics are believers in scientism. They are often irrational, and will always seek to use our claims about the paranormal as proof that we need to be protected from ourselves

Types of EVP

Electronic Voice Phenomena are formed in three very different ways, all of which are dependent on the availability of a relatively chaotic signal which has been shown in research to able to be influenced with psychokinesis.

Background Sound

Experience is showing that a microphone is only important to introduce additional noise if the noise generated internally by the recorder is not useful for voice formation.

A very high quality recorder produces very little internal noise but a low-quality recorder typically produces too much steady-state noise, which is not useful for EVP.

Current understanding is that noise in the voice range–400 to 4,000 Hz–with many perturbations, such as small noise spikes, is useful for voice formation. The noise is needed for voice, but the perturbations are apparently useful to initiate the voice formation process.

One technique to produce this form of noise is to rapidly sweep a radio dial. The objective is to sweep the entire dial in under a second so that no whole words or even allophones can be detected. This is not radio-sweep as used in “Ghost” or “Spirit Boxes” type devices, which is typically a much longer sweep that may produce whole words in the output file, thus producing many false positives.

Sounds from a common fan, running water or passing cars have been shown to be “dirty enough” to produce EVP.

Transform EVP

Traditionally EVP formation has involved the transformation of available audio-frequency energy into voice. This transformation is thought to occur in the electronic equipment, specifically in an analog stage before the signal is digitized for storage.

The resulting signal is seen as a simulation of human voice which may closely mimic the physical voice of the person thought to be speaking. This includes nuances of voice indicating accent, age, sex and attitude. Analysis of the resulting voice often shows novel arrangement of formants (clusters of frequency grouped by octaves of the voice box frequency produced during passage through the mouth) and fragmented voice box frequencies (Formant 0).11

Prior to wide availability of personal computers, the static between radio stations was often used as background sound for transform EVP since radios were a readily available source of sound. Current Best Practices involve the use of noise, such as that produced by a fan. The use of any form of “live voice,” such as a possible voice from a radio broadcast, is strongly discouraged.

Random Selection

This can also be described as opportunistic EVP because it is thought to require the availability of already formed voice fragments. It depends on a random process which is thought to be influenced by the communicating entity. In the application known as EVPmaker,12 a prerecorded sound file containing voice is stored in a buffer with each buffer address containing a small segment of the original sound file. A random process is then used to randomly select the contents of the buffer addresses. The resulting stream of randomly selected sound fragments becomes the output sound file. Meaningful messages are sometimes found in that output stream. It is believed that the communicating personality’s intention to communicate might cause meaningful perturbations in the random process, thus selecting intended buffer addresses.

EVPmaker developer, Stefan Bion,12 has provided an input sound file on his website which contains speech fragments known as allophones which are generated by a speech synthesis program. In this application, if a word is present in the output, it must be formed by a chance arrangement of allophones or it must be the product of intended manipulation of the random process. The deciding factor is whether or not the utterance is meaningful for the circumstance. An example of this is at real-time, two-way conversations.

Environmental Control of Speech Synthesis

Some applications employ environmental energy sensors to control the operation of a speech synthesis process or to select addresses in a word or voice fragment buffer. It is believed that the communicating personality’s intention to communicate might cause meaningful perturbations in the environmental energy, thus selecting intended buffer addresses.

What is Probably Not EVP

Please review the online journal article, EVP Formation,13 for a more in-depth explanation about what is known about EVP today. An important part of that article is a discussion about characteristics commonly found in EVP. Based on those common characteristics, and the result of other studies, it is becoming evident that certain technologies (probably) do not produce EVP.

The most commonly used of these technologies that probably do not produce EVP is radio-sweep, which uses modified radios popularly known as ghost boxes or spirit boxes. The case study14 report is typical of the kind of study indicating radio-sweep probably does not produce EVP. A Research Study into the Interpretation of EVP15 which is a 2013 study conducted by Parapsychologist Dr. Mark Leary, indicates that radio-sweep examples thought to be EVP are typically not correctly understood by a listening panel.

There are clearly instances in which the noise produced by rapidly sweeping* radio stations is used to produce transform EVP when the noise produced by the sweep is recorded. In this case, the radio-sweep process is really just a novel form of sound conditioning for the production of transform EVP when the sweep output is recorded. The radio sweep process may be beneficial as an aid to the operator’s intuitive understanding of the question; however, resulting “EVP” appears to be more the practitioner’s storytelling to create meaning where none was intended.

*Most radio-sweep devices us a two to three seconds sweep. Sweeping at less than a second, certainly fast enough so that no understandable voice can be heard, often produces an output sound that has all of the characteristics needed for transform EVP.


Characteristics of EVP

The following list is extracted from Section III: Transcommunication of, Your Immortal Self: Exploring the Mindful Way, 38 with additions based on more current work. The characteristics will provide a sense of how EVP sounds and the nature of the phenomenal voices.

Transform EVP

The first group of characteristics is specifically for transform EVP, which are thought to be formed by the transformation of audio frequency energy into a simulated voice.11

  1. EVP are distinctive: EVP have a distinctive character of cadence, pitch, frequency, volume and use of background sound. The voices have a distinctive sound to them that is difficult to describe. For instance, EVP messages often have an unusual speed of enunciation; the words seem to be spoken more quickly than normal human speech.
  2. A need for background sound sources: Research has shown that the voice in EVP is formed out of ambient sound energy.17 Because of these characteristics, it is standard practice to assure the availability of ambient sound for voice formation, even while isolating the recording device or process from uncontrolled ambient sounds, such as crowd noise, so as to avoid mistaking unnoticed normal voices as EVP.
  3. Frequency range: EVP are formed in available background sound. As such, if there is a high frequency component in the background sound, say caused by whistling wind, it is possible that the EVP will be of similar frequency range. If there are both higher and lower frequency components in the background sound, it is possible to find EVP formed in both regions of the sound. In some instances, two different voices might overlap.
  4. Missing frequencies: Spectral analysis of EVP samples has shown that the fundamental frequencies of voice associated with the human voice box are sometimes missing. One researcher describes the typical EVP as a thickening of the background noise to form the voice.17
  5. Precursor sounds: Sounds are often heard prior to an occurrence of EVP. Although these vary in nature, they tend to be within tenths of a second of a phrase and are a popping or clicking noise reminiscent of the squelch sound caused when the automatic gain control engages as the push to talk button is depressed on a Citizens Band radio.18
  6. EVP show evidence of being limited by available energy: Utterances tend to have about the same amount of audio power in their associated sound wave from one EVP sample to another. That is, a short EVP will tend to be louder than a long EVP. A very long phrase might be composed of two or more average-length phrases separated by brief pauses. Also, an utterance may trail off at the end, as if the energy is being depleted before the message is finished. It is as if the communicator is attempting to manage available power as packets of energy.19
  7. EVP are complete words or phrases: Message are typically one to two seconds in duration and are not truncated at the beginning or end. If EVP were radio interference, they would often begin in the middle of a word. EVP messages are usually complete thoughts, as well.19
  8. The voices in EVP are often recognizable: It is common for an EVP to contain the recognizable voice of the discarnate person thought to be speaking. It is also common for that entity to say something that was typical of what he or she would have said while in the physical. Personality clearly remains intact even though the person no longer has a physical body.20
  9. EVP is found wherever the practitioner listens: This suggests that the source of audio noise is not a factor for EVP, so long as the audio energy is suitable for voice formation. In practice, the majority of techniques for recording EVP involve sound conditioning, rather than unique forms of psi detection. For instance, upscaling infrasound so that it can be heard by human ears or downscaling ultrasound really constitute techniques of sound conditioning. The resulting EVP is not evidence that the utterance was formed beyond human hearing, but that it was formed when the audio frequency energy was made available to the recording process.

All forms of EVP

  1. EVP Are in a language the practitioner understands: Alexander MacRae has conducted experiments in a place that has no English language radio or television stations, yet resulting EVP were in English, which is his primary language. It is typical for the EVP, no matter where they are recorded, to be in a language that the practitioner understands. There have been exceptions to this which were apparently intended as a demonstration, but as a rule, EVP will be spoken in a language understood by the practitioner or an interested observer.19This brings up an interesting point of speculation about psi-based communication. Mental mediums often report that they receive communication from nonphysical entities as images which they must interpret. These images are not just mental pictures. They are packets of information that are sufficiently complete for the receiver to fully understand their meaning. Robert Monroe21 referred to this form of information as “Thought Balls.”
  2. EVP are not ambient sound or broadcast programming: Studies have been conducted to determine if EVP are stray radio signals, ambient but unnoticed voices or other sounds. EVP have been collected in an electrical, audio and radio frequency shielded room.22 In one study, a radio and a recorder were placed in a padded chamber which was then buried under ground. The recorder did not record radio programming but did record EVP, which were transformed from the noise produced by the radio.23
  3. Party line:  Some EVP sound as if they are comments intended for someone other than the practitioner. This is much like momentarily listening in on a party line telephone call. It is not uncommon in both field and controlled recording situations to record comments that seem as if unseen people are discussing the practitioner’s actions in much the same way that you might discuss the activity of someone that you were watching.
  4. EVP are appropriate to the circumstances: There are numerous examples of EVP that are clearly direct responses to questions recorded just prior to the EVP phrase or to the circumstances. An example of an EVP being appropriate to a circumstance is an EVP recorded by Lisa. We were asking a woman about the upstairs lighting and sound room for the Frank Sinatra Theater at the Cal-Neva Casino at Lake Tahoe, California. They had heard that the heavy door to the room often shut for no apparent reason, scaring the crews setting up lights and sound systems for shows. The woman told them that she never, ever went to the control room. Lisa’s recorder was on while she thanked the woman for her assistance. On the recording, Lisa can be heard saying, “Thank you very much.” Underneath her voice, is a clearly heard paranormal voice saying, “Please don’t come.” However politely said, it seems obvious someone did not want to be disturbed.
  5. Precognitive responses: Answers to questions may be recorded prior to a question being asked, so that the answer, as a phenomenal message, is on the sound track followed by the practitioner asking the question. More research is required before making informed speculation about this observed characteristic, but the indication is that the entity may be sensing what the practitioner is about to ask as a mind-to-mind exchange following the “avatar model” as discussed in the Implicit Cosmology.1
  6. Vocalized questions elicit more EVP: There is evidence that the communicating entities are able to read our thoughts, as illustrated by the occasional EVP which clearly responds to a comment just seconds before the comment is expressed. However, analysis by MacRae suggests vocalizing our comments and questions produces more frequent EVP.19
  7. The “newness” effect: The practitioner’s excitement in trying a new detection device or recording technique may be the cause of improved EVP collection. As the new approach becomes normal operating procedure, the improvements generally fade back to a more normal Quality and Quantity (QQ) of EVP collection. This suggests that it is important for the practitioner to maintain piqued interest during experiments. This is also one of the reasons it is speculated that the practitioner is an integral part of the recording circuit. The practitioner is apparently supplying the necessary psi influence to produce a useful contact field to enable a nonphysical to physical transfer of information.
  8. Effective devices unique to the practitioner: Exceptionally effective EVP and ITC collecting systems have been developed; however, these typically work well for the developer, but do not necessarily work as well for other practitioners. This paradox supports the belief that the practitioner is part of the recording circuit. It has also reinforced the concept that the communicating entity may be specific to the practitioner.
  9. EVP can be thoughts of living people: Two experiments appear to show that at least some EVP might be initiated by living people who were sleeping or distracted at the time. In these prearranged experiments between a practitioner and a sleeping person, questions were clearly answered by a communicating entity, and the answers were appropriate for the sleeping person. This fact of EVP suggests the possibility that EVP can become an important tool for consciousness research. For instance, is it possible that a patient in a coma might initiate an EVP?25
  10. Understanding EVP may be like learning a new language: As discussed in the EVP Online Listening trials report, people with little or no experience listening to EVP will typically correctly report words in Class A transform EVP on average of 20% to 25% of the time. In contrast, an experienced practitioner should correctly understand close to 100% of Class A utterances.26 This number drops to 0% to 5% for studies of radio-sweep (Spirit Box, Frank Box, Ghost Box) and 0% if single-syllable utterances are omitted.14, 15

Recording for EVP

The following information is intended to provide a technique which is most likely to produce results. This is for transform EVP based on the material provided by ATransC in the Techniques section of this website. Please also consider the best practices which are drafted in Best Practices

Types of Recording Sessions

These instructions are for transform EVP not using live voice as an input file.

A characteristic of the psi field known as auric energy or bioenergy is thought to accumulate in any frequently occupied place, and especially in places in which strong emotions or frequent deep meditation occurs. As such, find a “special” recording area for your sessions in which you will not be bothered and in which you can control the noise. In field recording, it is difficult to control environmental conditions or supply background sound, but in known “haunted” locations, the energy helpful for contact may already be present.

Recording Procedure

Recording Equipment: Any device capable of recording voice frequency sound. A computer is recommended and a way to transfer audio from the recording device to a computer. The computer should be equipped with an audio management program, such as the open source, Audacity.36
Digital voice recorders are recommended for transform EVP. Less expensive models produce more internal noise which is useful for voice formation. High quality units will probably require added background noise. A computer can also be used, but will probably require added noise. 35

Remembering that the voice in transform EVP is apparently formed out of available audio-frequency noise, as a general rule, quieter recorders (less internal noise) will require more background, room noise. (See the sidebar: Background Noise) This means that, if you are using a second recorder as a control, using a higher-quality device will tend to assure the EVP will only be produced in the less expensive device.

Scheduling

Entities will speak at any time of day or night. In the beginning, however, it is advisable to record at a regular time and place. By doing this, the entities learn when there will be an opportunity for contact and your expectation of the upcoming session helps focus your attention on the process. Try to find a place that will be quiet and free of interruptions. Background sounds are okay, but it is important to be aware of these so that they can be distinguished from the EVP during analysis. It may help to make an “appointment” with the intended communicator the day before, during prayer or meditation.

Background Sound Source

As previously noted, sounds in the environment are apparently used to help form the words. Most recording situations have some background sounds, but it may be necessary to add noise with something like a fan or running water. Some people use foreign language radio, crowd babble or audio tapes, but ATransC discourages the use of radio static or human speech (live voice) of any form. Be inventive. In controlled conditions, it is also possible to use high-quality recorders, because you can supply sound. (Always consider how sounds in the environment might seem like EVP in a recording.)

Preparation

Begin with meditation and a short prayer to ask for only those intending the highest good and an invitation to friends on the other side to participate. This is not a religious function. The conscious expression of intent helps to set your expectations and sets bounds for your communicators. Even if you do not accept the hypothesis that EVP are initiated by discarnate beings, whoever or whatever is initiating the messages, setting intention helps the process. It is best to recording when your energy is the highest.

Recording

Begin by stating your intention for communication and then say that you are turning on the recorder. The communicators will often come through as soon as the recorder is turned on and these beginning messages may be the loudest, so it is a good idea to turn on the recorder and wait a few seconds before speaking.

Some people also provide feedback before the session so that the communicators will know what worked in the last experiment. It is not necessary to record in the dark.

Vocalize your comments during an EVP session. Questions should be recorded, and a period of time between each comment should be left for the communicators to respond–about ten seconds. At the end, ask if they have something to say and leave time for them to respond.

Playback

In transform EVP, the voice is usually not heard until playback. Practitioners report that the voices tend to become stronger and clearer as they and the entities gain in experience, but at first the voices may speak in whispers. Voices may not be recorded in every session and it may take several sessions to discover the first voice. Hearing the voices is a learned ability. It might take thirty minutes to examine a three or four-minute recording. Experienced practitioners learn to use the waveform as a clue as to where an utterance might be. The “Betty’s in there” waveform shown above will give you an idea of what to look for.

Think of EVP as a form of communication. The attitude held by experienced practitioners is that the communicators will leave their message wherever they think someone will listen. It is a good practice to expect to find the voices where normal human voice would be found. It is not a good practice to amplify a nearly flat-line waveform to see if speech is present because enough amplification to make it clearly audible may well amplify radio-frequency contamination.

Classifying Examples

Most EVP are difficult to understand. Using a classification system helps you have a sense of the quality of your examples, and helps to set the expectations of your listeners. The classical system is the Class A, B and C ranking; however, the ATransC is testing a slightly expanded system34 intended to also include visual forms of ITC. It is explained in the article: “Classifying Phenomena.” It has been posted there so that you will have the opportunity to tell us if you like it and/or how you would like to see it changed.

type-1-and-type-2

In the modified system:

Type 1: Transformed physical media; not always present
Type 2: Always present; often as a persistent artifact

The Classes are as before, but described in more generic terms:

Class A: Evident without explanation
Class B: May require directions
Class C: May be vaguely experienced; mostly obscured by noise

Class B or C voices may have one or two clearly understood words. Loud does not equal Class A. Transform EVP are considered Type 1, Class A, B or C.

Keeping a Log

Keeping a recording log is helpful for tracking your progress. If you do keep a written log, it is a good practice to record the date, time and circumstances of the recording. If there are multiple recordings in the recorder, then it is always important to speak your location and to note ambient voices, and such, at the beginning of each recording. When you find an EVP that is clear enough to keep, note the date and time and seconds into the recording in your log. Also, not the words thought to be spoken and perhaps any significance … were you doing something the entity commented on? Be sure to label and save the audio file so that they can be found at a later time. Practitioners report that they feel weather may affect results, but this has not been well studied.

Keeping a well-organized storage system and notes will be very helpful to you when you have many recordings, or want to revisit an old one and need to know when and where it was recorded. However, experience has shown that keeping everything is just unreasonable. Unless the message has special significance, it is a good practice to discard all but the clearest examples. Depend on the help of friends acting as your witness panel. If they do not hear what you hear, discard the recording. It is just too easy to fool yourself.

Real-time EVP

The objective for most EVP practitioners is to achieve real-time, two-way communication with a loved one on the other side. If you pursue that line of investigation, it is important to remember that EVP are thought to be formed in a single analog stage of the electronic equipment. This may be in the output stage of an audio player used to supply background sound (if one is used) or in the input stage of the recorder used to collect the EVP.

(It is possible the transform might occur in the air, but that would look more like direct voice, to which current theories do not necessarily apply.)

If you are listing to the output of a recorder while it is recording, be mindful as to where there are additional analog stages. For instance, is the EVP formed in the amplifier for the speaker you listen to and not fed into the analog-to-digital converter for storage?

We would love to hear from you if you learn anything about this process.

Analyzing the Recording for EVP

Always use headphones when listening to the recording in a computer. The earmuff style that completely covers the ear is best, but also good are the soft rubber ear buds that are inserted into the channel of the ear.

Assuming a digital recorder is used, the voice is digitized right after it is limited to the required signal strength coming from the input amplifier. If it is necessary to record the sound file into the computer via an audio cable, the signal is turned back into analog, and then digitized again by the computer. There is little or no evidence that an EVP will be changed while in a digital format, but it is possible for change or even new utterance while transferring in the analog phase.

It is possible to reasonably reproduce the average human voice with a sample rate of 8,000 KHz, so it is recommended that the audio file be saved into the computer at 11025 KHz sample rate, 16-bit word file. Mono or stereo is a personal choice. Once the audio file is in the computer, it should be saved as a *.wav file for storage and editing.

Current best practice for sharing an EVP example on the Internet is to convert the file to mono, *.mp3 format, but using editing tools on mp3 is discouraged if it is for research. A 200 kb audio file can be reduced to around 15 Kb when converted from a *.wav file to an *.mps file. This makes it easy for sharing files via the Internet.

It is also best practice to provide a raw clip of the EVP, along with a bit of your voice for reference, if possible, followed by a short silence and then the whole clip again with any editing you may have done. Explain what you have done so that your listener will know what to expect.

Finally, ten decibels or so of amplification, perhaps a little noise reduction and high-end filtering is about all that should be done to a sound track to make the utterance more easily understood. It is possible to change the meaning of an EVP with over processing, and the general rule is to discard the EVP if it cannot be understood with only slight enhancement, and certainly discard nonsensical utterances.

A listening technique is to select a few syllables of a possible utterance and then play it over and over to allow your mind to look for familiar sounds. People are trained to recognize common arrangements of sound as words, but EVP are often formed from odd arrangements of sound, depending on what is supplied, and the usual cues are often missing. A very loud, well-spoken phrase could still be difficult to make out for a person not accustomed to hearing EVP.

A good practice is to make sure the sound you think is an EVP containing an answer to a question, or perhaps a comment about an event. Because we mentally formulate what we are going to say before speaking, it is reasonable for an answer to your question to come just before you ask or shortly after. It is discouraged to relate questions and answers that are separated by more than a second or so, and certainly if they are separated by another question.

In opportunistic EVP techniques, it is not good practice to let the recording run and then select likely sounds for which you give meaning with a likely story. While this should be obvious, it is a very common practice. An even greater sin is to remove intervening time so as to make unrelated utterances seem to have come together.

The objective is to give your listener a sense of perspective so as to develop a mental image of the EVP in relationship to a physical person’s voice., and how soon before or after the EVP came in relationship to the question. Always try to show the witness what you have done to make the voice clear.

In every case, try to use a witness panel.29

Storage and Sharing

Be sure to set up a method of saving your recordings in your computer that will allow you to easily locate examples. A good practice is to save the raw recording session in a dated folder and then also save clips containing the EVP in the same folder. Field recordings are saved under the name of the location and the date. It is helpful to keep a separate folder for your Class A examples for easy retrieval for demonstration to friends.

Unless you are conducting EVP sessions for research, consider it a kindness to only send the portion of the sound file containing the EVP and perhaps a bit of physical person voice. We too often receive examples that are embedded somewhere in a ten or fifteen minute-long file. It is just too demanding for your witnesses to search for the intended utterance in a long file.

As a final note on this, after recording for ten or fifteen years, we finally learned that it is senseless to keep all of our recordings and logs. It is a good practice to cull the best from the files as you go and discard all but the most meaningful. EVP are actually very common amongst practitioners, and there is little special about Class C and B examples.


What You Need to Know

The following observations will help you gain a perspective of the scope of this study:

Hyperlucidity

The degree of clarity between conscious self and mostly unconscious mind is referred to as lucidity. Thinking there is a clear connection, when in fact, there is hardly any at all is referred to as hyperlucidity. This seems to most often occur when a person works alone or does not accept input from others. It is usually seen as a complex of behavior including delusion, argumentative interaction with those who do not support the delusion and rejection of the opinion of subject-matter specialists.

Who Can Hear the Voices

A series of online listening studies showed that the average ATransC website visitor participating in the study could correctly identify only 25% of the words in the Class A EVP examples. (See the study here) Most experienced practitioners have learned not to expect a person who is unaccustomed to hearing EVP to correctly understand examples. This is especially true if the person is skeptical to begin with. The message to all of us is that, even though the example may be very clear and obvious to us, it is unrealistic to attempt to show an example to the police or a grieving person.

Of course, it is possible to guide a person into hearing what we say is in the recording. But by every rational measure, “teaching a person to hear what we say is in the recording is considered “leading.” People, especially people who are grieving the loss of a love done, are simply too easily guided into hearing what is not there.

Before attempting to share an example with untrained witnesses, we recommend that the example be passed by a witness panel without prompting. Only if the majority of a panel is able to hear what is believed to be in the example, is the example ready for untrained ears. Doing this helps to protect the practitioner from accusations of taking advantage of people.

Safety

A common concern is whether or not it is possible to attract a discarnate entity (ghost) and later be bothered by it. People are realistically concerned that they might bring one home. In fact, we have no verified record of anyone being harmed by their communicators. Any harm that has been reported has been due to the practitioner’s overreaction to imagined danger.

There is a potential problem for people who are fearful of the unknown, as their imagination can create circumstances which might be dangerous for them. If you are very fearful of the unknown, if you are inclined to do what you imagine you have been instructed to do or if you have a history of mental illness, it is advisable that you avoid working with any form of transcommunication.

Prone to Seeing Phenomena Where There Are None

This is along the same line of thought as the safety issue mentioned above. People new to these phenomena and those who have not educated themselves in the state of the art are prone to a syndrome sometimes referred to as hyperlucidity. (The clarity of awareness between a person’s conscious self and core personality in the etheric is referred to as lucidity.) Hyperlucidity is marked by the tendency to find phenomena everywhere despite considerable testimony to the contrary by peers.


Visual ITC

Visual ITC is the term used to identify anomalous faces, scenes and other recognizable features found in visible noise. Based on known physical principles, the features should not exist, yet they are objectively experienced by the average witness. ITC appears to be governed by the same principles governing the formation of transform EVP. The optimum medium for their formation appears to be optical, chaotic noise of medium-intensity. Very bright or very dark noise tends to obscure the feature.

Just as with EVP, the faces of visual ITC are sometimes recognizable as loved ones, sometimes even on request, making visual ITC a form of induced trans-etheric communication. Each form of ITC inherits a degree of credibility from other forms, even as more is learned by studying all forms. And so, visual ITC is considered another proof of survival.

Visual ITC is not the same as spirit photography in which an apparition is found in a photograph, even though it had not been known to be present when the picture was taken. Precipitation art is also a different form of phenomena, even though some of the chaotic characteristics of visual ITC are sometime found in the art work.

The physical process known as stochastic resonance is a means by which a small signal is amplified when combined with a chaotic signal in a nonlinear electrical circuit. As with transform EVP, this process is hypothesized as the mechanism by which a weak psi influence is able to impress the communicating personality’s intended order on the chaotic signal, thereby producing audible or visual ITC features.

Video Loop ITC

Any technique that will produce medium-intensity, chaotic optical noise. Ca be used for the collection of the paranormal features. In the video loop technique we use, a video camera is connected to the Aux In of a television set. The camera is pointed at the screen so that it is able to record the camera output as it is displayed on the screen.

The circuit shown in the Video Loop ITC Diagram is typical for producing chaotic optical noise suitable for visual ITC. We have been using a Cannon 8mm ES2000 analog camcorder placed about three feet from a Sony KV20TS32, 20 inch Trinitron color TV. The camera is used in Portrait Mode and is focused just beyond the screen surface.caaevp2004_video_setup

The camera lens is zoomed so that only about 75% of the screen is visible to the camera. We usually have the camera at about a 45-degree angle from the screen and pointed just to the side of the center where the rolling image seems to begin.

It is routine for us to try different angles, and camera distances from the screen in an effort to find the best configuration. It is interesting that, some days, we are hardly able to develop the desired rolling scene. We have made no effort to track environmental conditions except that we noted a difference, apparently due to location. We were able to develop a good rolling scene in the corner bedroom but the best production of the phenomenal features was in the middle bedroom. The only difference between the two adjacent rooms is that, in the corner room, the equipment was about ten feet closer to an outside wall supporting the house power distribution box. The Chaotic Noise Example screen print below will give you an idea of what has been an optimum display to produce the features. Also see the example on You Tube at youtu.be/P2xXCAWRs4k.

Clarity is a Function of Equipment

Each configuration of equipment used in video loop ITC will produce a different visual effect. There are probably even differences amongst units of the same brand. The rolling effect on the screen is a cycle that is about a second in duration. An average of thirty frames per second of full video quality only produces five or six frames per cycle that contain noise suitable for phenomena. A session is usually about fifteen seconds so that there may be ninety or so frames that may contain features. To save time, we only save the ones that appear interesting as we step, frame-by-frame through the saved video file. A typical fifteen second session will produce thirty or so frames interesting enough to carefully examine.

If we have the equipment set right, and if a number of as yet undetermined environmental factors are okay, we may save ten or so useful features from the session. There have been many sessions in which we saved none. Also, the texture of the noise may be more or less grainy, depending on where we had the focus plane.butler_photoshop_screen_print

Chaotic Visual Noise in Video Frame: This is a video frame taken from a video-loop ITC session. Contrast in a region of the frame has been changed to make the feature more visible. The same region has been copied to a second file and contrast has been further enhanced. The feature appears to be a woman or girl wearing a bonnet and looking to your right shoulder.

Software for Frame Analysis

Finding suitable video capture and frame examining software has been a challenge. Adobe’s Premier 10 was not very expensive and came bundled with Photoshop Elements 10. Currently, we are trying CyberLink Power Director with some success.

Each likely frame should be rotated in 90 degree increments while being examined. Frames are numbered something like 1-2-14-2017, 2-2-14-2017, 3-2-14-2017 and so on. Individual features are each copied into a new file, and those worth saving are labeled 3-2-14-2017a, 3-2-14-2017b 3-2-14-2017c and so on. The idea is to be able to associate a feature with the video frame from which it was captured.

Analog Versus Digital

In EVP, it is pretty clear that the voice is formed in the electronics, probably in a single transistor junction. Stochastic amplification requires an analog, nonlinear process which is available in the active region of semiconductor devices. There is no apparent requirement for which transistor junction is used, except that it should be in a part of the circuit that permits recording of the results. The same applies to visual ITC, but because of the nature of the video loop, it is not clear which device is actually used.

An all-digital circuit would not seem to provide the necessary environment for stochastic amplification. For instance, when a webcam is used that has a digital image sensor, and that connects to the computer via USB cable, the only analog stage before display on the computer monitor is the image sensor.

Light Reflected from Moving Water Technique

Short of simply taking a picture of medium-intensity texture and brightness surfaces, probably the simplest method to produce ITC features is photographing light reflected from moving water. All you need is a camera and a container for water as shown below. Any camera will do but if you use a video camera, you will need a computer program for examining the individual frames. Otherwise, handling of the individual pictures is the same as for video loop ITC.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Sauce Pan for Water ITC: Glass sauce pan in a black pot with about three inches of water. Black pot is just for contrast. Any overhead light source will do to reflect from water. Take pictures of water as it is disturbed with finger or spoon. The objective is for the moving water to produce many areas of medium-intensity reflected light.

May 2011 Water Images 047 composite

King: Except for the face, the left picture is typical for light reflected from moving water. The violet comes from the glass sauce pan. The paranormal face at the right of the left frame has been enlarged in the right picture. Water was agitated with a moving finger.

Alternative Techniques

Again, the requirement for visual ITC appears to be medium-intensity, chaotic optical noise. A computer monitor or television screen is self-luminous, but moving water, smoke, even breath in cold air requires some form of illumination. The camera must see light reflected from the chaotically moving surface.

Caution should be taken about what is paranormal and what is strange. For instance, mirrored pictures often have symmetry of dots and shapes, sometimes giving the appearance of alien faces. There is very little reason to think these are paranormal. Part of the objective of working with these phenomena is to show the evidence of survival. It is important that that evidence is what we claim it to be.

If you enhance a feature more than with a little contrast to make it more easily seen, it is important to show the original alongside the enhanced version. It is very important that people are able to understand the limits of your evidence.

Also keep in mind the limits of your equipment. We use relatively old technology equipment. Each stage degrades the resolution so that, when a feature is finally displayed in a photograph, the graininess of the feature often obscures what the communicating entity probably intended us to see. That loss of resolution is one of the reasons a good camera and linear noise generation such as moving water, can produce clearer features than a video loop.

Much of this section has been extracted from Your Immortal Self. I recommend that you consider taking the time to read and understand that book.


Association TransCommunication (ATransC) Today

(Formally the American Association of Electronic Voice Phenomena or AA-EVP)

The Association TransCommunication is a 501 (c)(3) USA nonprofit organization. It is chartered as a publicly supported educational and research organization. The primary means of public education is the atransc.org website, now containing over 400 pages of articles, research and study reports, personal stories, examples, theory and references.

The ATransC still has members, just not member dues. The ATransC has changed from support with member dues to support from earnings from AA-EVP Publishing and affiliate programs when website visitors use the eBay and Amazon links to make purchases. All of the funds, including proceeds from the Butler’s book, There is No Death and There are No Dead, are applied to operations, outreach and research. None of the volunteers, including the directors, receive compensation.

One form of ATransC membership is to be on the Occasional Update Email List. This is a very occasional newsletter used to help keep you informed about what we think is important to this work. You can register to receive these updates with the form on the right column.

Today, the ATransC is amongst the very few organizations in the English-speaking world that provides information about the Trans-Survival Hypothesis from the perspective of current understanding about transcommunication. If you think this study is important, then please consider supporting the organization by participating in the Idea Exchange and subscribing to the Occasional Update email.

A person can become knowledgeable about these phenomena and learn to work with ITC by taking the time to study the contents of this website but it is important to work with others who can act as “objective advisors.”

A recent addition to the website is all of the newsletter published by Sarah Estep and the Butlers, as well as Spirit Voices published by Bill WeisYour_Immortal_Self_coverensale. They are in PDF format and are accessible from the top menu.

Implicit Cosmology: Tom Butler has translated lessons learned by way of ATransC members and emerging understanding of survival into a model of reality intended to help further research in this field. Please take time to review the work at ethericstudies.org. Also consider supporting the Association through the purchase of the book: Your Immortal Self: Exploring the Mindful Way by Tom Butler.

You are part of this community

The ATransC depends on public support to continue. Your donations will help assure that the research continues, but your participation is even more needed. This is a time in which all things paranormal are contracting while the skeptical community is thriving. By every measure, the paranormal community, i
ncluding parapsychology and the study of ITC is fading away. If you think this work is important, then it is important that you become active and help reverse the tide.



References

  1. Butler, Tom. “Implicit Cosmology,” Etheric Studies, Cosmology Series, 2015, ethericstudies.org/implicit-cosmology/
  2. Parapsychology Association, parapsych.org
  3. Online Journal, Association TransCommunication, atransc.org/journal/
  4. Senkowski, Earnst. Instrumental Transcommunication, Frankfurt/Main: R. G. Fischer, Verlag. 1995, (English translation by Heidemarie Hallmann: worlditc.org – link to Books).
  5. Scientific American, Scientific American, Inc. New York, NY, sciam.com.
  6. Wagner, Stephen. “Edison and the Ghost Machine,” About.com Paranormal Phenomena, 2009, thoughtco.com/edison-and-the-ghost-machine-2594017.
  7. Rogo, D Scott and Bayless, Raymond. Phone Calls From The Dead, Prentice-Hall, Inc., New Jersey, 1979.
  8. Jürgenson, Friedrich, Voice Transmissions with the Deceased, (German to English Translation, T. Wingert & G. Wynne, 2001) Friedrich Jürgenson Foundation, Sweden (Original work published 1964) atransc.org/books-itc/
  9. Raudive, Konstantin, Breakthrough: An Amazing Experiment in Electronic Communication with the Dead, New York: Taplinger, 1971. First published by Colin Smythe, Ltd. and still available at colin-smythe.com.
  10. Butler, Tom, Butler, Lisa. Private conversations with Colin Smythe. 2000, colinsmythe.co.uk/authors/voices/voices.htm
  11. Presi, Paolo, Italian ITC researcher with the Interdisciplinary Laboratory For Biopsychocybernetics Research (Il Laboratorio), Bologna, Italy. [Defunct]
  12. Bion, Stefan. EVPmaker, 2008, tonbandstimmen.de/evpmaker/index_e.htm.
  13. Butler, Tom. “The Formation of EVP,” Association TransCommunication, 2008, atransc.org/evp-formation/.
  14. Butler, Tom. “Radio-Sweep: A Case Study,” Association TransCommunication, 2009, atransc.org/radiosweep-study1/.
  15. Leary, Mark. “A Research Study into the Interpretation of EVP,” Winter 2013 ATransC NewsJournal, 2013, atransc.org/radio-sweep_study2/
  16. Butler, Tom, Butler, Lisa. There is No Death and There are No Dead, AA-EVP Publishing, 2003, atransc.org/books-atransc/, ISBN: 0-9727493-0-6.
  17. Gullà, Daniele. “Computer–Based Analysis of Supposed Paranormal Voice: The Question of Anomalies Detected and Speaker Identification,” Association TransCommunication, 2004, atransc.org/gulla-voice-analysis/.
  18. Butler, Lisa. “Precursor Sounds in Physical Phenomena,” Association TransCommunication, 2002, atransc.org/precursor-sounds/.
  19. MacRae, Alexander. The Mystery of the Voices, Self-published CD, 2000, Portree Skye, Scotland.
  20. Copeland, Martha. I’m Still Here, AA-EVP publishing, 2005, atransc.org/books-atransc/, ISBN-13: 978-0972749312.
  21. Monroe Institute, 62 Roberts Mountain Road, Faber, Virginia 22938, monroeinstitute.org.
  22. MacRae, Alexander. “Report of an Anomalous Speech Products Experiment Inside a Double Screened Room,” as printed in the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, Volume 69, 2005, spr.ac.uk/.
  23. Bill Weisensale. “Eliminating Radio Frequency Contamination for EVP,” Spirit Voices, Issue 3, 1981, atransc.org/eliminating-rf-contamination/.
  24. Butler, Tom. “Comparing Personality-Body Models,” Etheric Studies, 2010, ethericstudies.org/comparing-personality-body-models/.
  25. Butler, Lisa. “Recording Thoughts of the Living,” Association TransCommunication, 2001, atransc.org/recording-thoughts-of-living/.
  26. Butler, Tom. “EVP Online Listening Trials,” Association TransCommunication, 2008, atransc.org/evp-online-listening-trials/.
  27. Braude, Stephen E. “Survival or Super-psi?,” Journal of Scientific Exploration, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 127-144, 1992, scientificexploration.org/journal/jse_06_2_braude.pdf.
  28. Butler, Tom. “The Energy Profile of Transform EVP,” Association. TransCommunication, 2013, atransc.org/evp-formation/.
  29. Butler, Tom. “Witness Panel,” Etheric Studies, 2013, ethericstudies.org/witness-panel/.
  30. Butler, Tom. ““Control Recorder for EVP,” Etheric Studies, 2007, ethericstudies.org/control-recorder/.
  31. Butler, Tom. “Phantom Voices,” Association TransCommunication, 2012, atransc.org/phantom-voices/.
  32. Talbot, Michael. The Holographic Universe, Harper Perennial, 1991,  NY, NY.
  33. Butler, Tom. “Mindfulness,” Etheric Studies, 2014, ethericstudies.org/mindfulness/
  34. Butler, Tom. “Classification,” Etheric Studies, 2013, ethericstudies.org/classifying-phenomena/.
  35. Butler, Tom, “Selecting an Audio Recorder,” Association TransCommunication, 2001, atransc.org/selecting-audio-recorder/.
  36. Audacity Audio Management Program, Audacity, audacity.sourceforge.net/.
  37. Butler, Tom. “Notes on Survival,” Etheric Studies, 2017, ethericstudies.org/survival/.
  38. Butler, Tom. Your Immortal Self, Exploring the Mindful Way. AA-EVP Publishing, 2016. ISBN 978-0-9727493-8-1. ethericstudies.org/immortal_self/.
  39. Butler, Tom. “Glossary of Terms.” Etheric Studies. 2014. ethericstudies.org/glossary-of-terms/.
  40. Butler, Tom. “Personality-Centric Perspective.” Etheric Studies. 2014. ethericstudies.org/personality-centric-perspective/.
  41. What is Anomalistic Psychology? Goldsmiths, University of London. ac.uk/apru/what/.
  42. Simmonds-Moore, Christine. “What is Exceptional Psychology?” 76 supplement, Pages 54-57, Journal of Parapsychology, (#76 supplement, 54-57, 2012), 2012. (Behind a paywall).
  43. Copeland, Martha. “EVP Examples by Martha Copeland.” Association TransCommunication. org/copeland-evp/.

 

A Note about Wikipedia

The Wikipedia entries for frontier subjects such as EVP change as passing editors contribute corrections and different points of view. Since the skeptical editors have driven off most of the people who are knowledgeable about frontier subjects, paranormal articles frequently have many errors and are written with terminology designed to cast doubt on the subject, rather than to simply inform. Versions of articles with these errors have been copied onto other websites, which perpetuates the spreading of misinformation.

It is now official policy in Wikipedia to not allow what are referred to as fringe references, such as the peer-reviewed Journals published by the Parapsychological Association, Society for Psychical Research and Society for Scientific Exploration. All are considered pseudoscience and it is not even okay to propose considering them. Tom Butler was banned from editing the Rupert Sheldrake biography article based on the pseudoscience arbitration case which found in favor of the skeptical position.

Concerns with Wikipedia

Concerns with Wikipedia was written to explain why this it is important to everyone involved with frontier subjects to work for balance in Wikipedia articles. It offers suggestions for moderating Wikipedia’s negative influence.

March 2014 Update: Since Wikipedia has taken such a hard-line stance against all things paranormal as a matter of policy, the only rational response is to seek alternative means of explaining the reality of these phenomena. Please consider becoming an editor with Citizendium, an alternative wiki that has a policy of at least considering subject-matter expertise and is will allow well-considered references  from the paranormal journals.

(cc)2006aaevp-concerns_with_wikipediaYou are encouraged to put this logo on your website. The more links from other websites to Concerns with Wikipedia, the better chance there is that the public education article will be read.

 

Links: Paranormalist Community

An important lesson of the Implicit Cosmology is that each of us is part of a collective of personalities which share the common goal of better understanding the nature of reality. While the Prime Imperative (to experience, understand and return that understanding to Source) is hypothetical, it provides important guidance for mindful living.

One way to focusing experience so that understanding can be gained, and popular wisdom can be avoided, is by keeping up to date with current thought of community leaders. The “Search Paranormalist Community” button will always bring you to this page from which you can search the websites listed below with one process.

If you have a website or know of one that is focused on research, contains well-considered research reports or which includes useful information about things paranormal, please contact ATransC to add the site to this list. Also let us know if one of the listed sites should be given other attributes.


search_paranormalist_community

To the website visitor: using the contact tool, please report broken links or unexpected results from visiting one of these websites.

Key:

icon-aggregator = Aggregator icon-blog = Blog icon-discussion-board = Discussion Board icon-organization = Organization
icon-personal = Personal icon-research = Research icon-theory = Theory icon-wiki = Wiki

 

Websites Included In Community Search

American Society of Standards in Mediumship and Psychical Research

icon-aggregator  icon-research  icon-theory  icon-discussion-board

 

assmpi.org

From the website: The ASSMPI is a non profit organization that exists to help maintain standards and Investigate all forms of mediumship. We pride ourselves in maintaining professionalism in the field and helping to bring science and spirituality together.

As a professional organization, we aim to accredit organizations, mediums and Investigators who achieve the standards set and are determined to maintain professional integrity in both fields of study and operation.

Association for Skeptical Investigation

icon-organization  icon-blog

 

skepticalinvestigations.org

Some people are genuinely open-minded skeptics (small “s”). From the Association for Skeptical Investigation website:

This website is dedicated to countering the dogmatic and frequently ill-informed attacks leveled by self-styled skeptics on parapsychology and pioneering researchers in general.

We take the view that “my mind is made up – don’t confuse me with facts” is not a useful premise from which to conduct a reasoned debate.

As well as investigating skeptics, we look at ways in which scientific objectivity is compromised by vested interests, fraud, experimenter effects and merchants of doubt, who use skepticism as a weapon to further corporate interests.

We also explore current controversies and look at open-minded investigations, which use the scientific method to investigate the unknown.

Academy for Spiritual and Consciousness Studies, Inc. (ASCSI)

icon-organization

ascsi.org

The mission of the Academy for Spiritual and Consciousness Studies, Inc. is to discern, develop and disseminate knowledge of how paranormal phenomena may relate to and enhance the development of the human spirit.

The discussion board is at ascsi2.ning.com

Formally Academy of Spirituality and Paranormal Studies, Inc. (ASPSI)

Association TransCommunication (ATransC)

icon-organization  icon-wiki  icon-research

atransc.org

The ATransC is a publicly supported organization dedicated to furthering understanding of trans-etheric phenomena including EVP, visual ITC, survival and intentionality.

Wiki

The Collective is an effort to encourage collaboration in developing Best Practices: atransc.org/bp/Collective

 

Research

The ATransC conducts research, primarily concerning transcommunication. It maintains an online Journal.

James Carpenter

icon-blog  icon-theory

firstsightbook.com/wp/

A book Suggesting that we only be come aware of what our subconscious thinks of external information and not the information itself. See the Perception essay.

Ectoweb

icon-organization

ectoweb.com

This is a hauntings investigation group led by Karen Mossey and Mike Sullivan. Karen is one of the founders of the Big Circle and a very competent EVP practitioner.

Etheric Studies

icon-blog  icon-personal  icon-theory

ethericstudies.org

This is Tom Butler’s personal site which is dedicated to furthering the understanding of all things paranormal.

Forever Family Foundation

icon-organization  icon-blog

 

 

 

www.foreverfamilyfoundation.org

The Mission Statement is to:

  • To establish the existence of the continuity of the family, even though a member has left the physical world
  • To stimulate thought among the curious, those questioning their relationship to the universe, and people who are looking for explanations of certain phenomena
  • To financially support the continued research into survival of consciousness and Afterlife Science
  • To provide a forum where individuals and families who have suffered the loss of a loved one can turn for support, information, and hope through state-of-the-art information and services provided by ongoing research into the survival of consciousness and Afterlife Science
 iDigital Medium

icon-aggregator  icon-blog  icon-discussion-board  icon-research

 

 

idigitalmedium.com

From the website:

Our goal is to give you – The People, a voice – an opportunity to share something special to you that, when combined with the experiences of others, has the potential to demonstrate a well-rounded picture of spirituality in the world today on areas such as life after death, communication with spirit, and personal spiritual development.

ITC Bridge

icon-discussion-board  icon-research

itcbridge.com

The primary purpose of this forum is to educate the public of the existing evidence of the continuity of life while also sustaining an atmosphere of cooperation amongst researchers and non-researchers alike to advance trans-dimensional communication and personal spiritual development.

Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS)

icon-organization  icon-blog

 

 

noetic.org

IONS’ mission is supporting individual and collective transformation through consciousness research, educational outreach, and engaging a global learning community in the realization of our human potential. “Noetic” comes from the Greek word nous, which means “intuitive mind” or “inner knowing.” IONS conducts, sponsors, and collaborates on leading-edge research into the potentials and powers of consciousness, exploring phenomena that do not necessarily fit conventional scientific models while maintaining a commitment to scientific rigor.

Open Science

icon-aggregator

opensciences.org

Rupert Sheldrake’s offering still under construction

Paranormlia

icon-blog

 

monkeywah.typepad.com/paranormalia

 

Paranormalia is written by Robert McLuhan, a journalist and author based in London.

Parapsychological Association (PA)

icon-organization

 

parapsych.org

Established in 1957, the Parapsychological Association, Inc. (PA) is the international professional organization of scientists and scholars engaged in the study of ‘psi’ (or ‘psychic’) experiences, such as telepathy, clairvoyance, remote viewing, psychokinesis, psychic healing, and precognition.

The Otherside Press

icon-organization  icon-blog

 

theothersidepress.com

 

Understanding the what is known about “the other other side of the veil”  opens doors to more than just the afterlife. The Otherside Online Magazine seeks to provide reliable information about the paranormal.

Be part of the community!

Rhine Research Center

icon-organization  icon-research

 

rhine.org

From the website: The Rhine Research Center is a hub for research and education on the basic nature of consciousness.

The Center presents a wide range of educational offerings in which we attempt to draw together and present the most interesting and challenging current ideas on the nature and enhancement of consciousness. We present conferences, teach classes, and offer workshops, lectures, study groups, and other events. Some of these activities are face-to-face in our Durham NC headquarters, and some are web-based.

Rupert Sheldrake

icon-personal  icon-theory

 

sheldrake.org

From the website: Rupert Sheldrake, one of the world’s most innovative biologists and writers, is best known for his theory of morphic fields and morphic resonance, which leads to a vision of a living, developing universe with its own inherent memory.

An excellent place to begin learning about Sheldrake’s concepts is by reading his Glossary.

Society for Psychical Research (SPR)

icon-organization  icon-wiki

spr.ac.uk

Founded in 1882, The SPR was the first society to conduct organized scholarly research into human experiences that challenge contemporary scientific models.

Wiki

The SPR Psi Encyclopedia is at
psi-encyclopedia.spr.ac.uk.

Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)

icon-organization

 

scientificexploration.org

“Discernment Required”

Founded in 1982, The Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)is a professional organization of scientists and scholars who study unusual and unexplained phenomena. Subjects often cross mainstream boundaries, such as consciousness, unidentified aerial phenomena, and alternative medicine, yet often have profound implications for human knowledge and technology.

The Weiler Psi

icon-blog

 

weilerpsiblog.wordpress.com

Examining Psychic Ability: The People, The Theory, The Science, The Skeptics

The Weiler Psi is intended as a resource for people who are psychic, but don’t necessarily do it professionally. I am interested not in the talent itself, but in the people who have it. How does it affect us? How can we feel good about ourselves?

From Open Science

icon-blog

 

opensciences.org

Open Sciences Blog

The Last Frontier (http://www.juliaassante.com/blogs/)

Mind-Energy (http://www.mind-energy.net/)

Public Parapsychology (http://publicparapsychology.blogspot.com/)

Dean Radin: Entangled Minds  (http://deanradin.blogspot.com/)

Marilyn Schlitz’s Blog (http://marilynschlitz.com/blog/)

Rupert Sheldrake: Science Set Free (http://www.sheldrake.org/about-rupert-sheldrake/blog)

Skeptiko (http://www.skeptiko.com/)

Charles Tart’s Blog (http://blog.paradigm-sys.com/)

Information Gathering Using EVPmaker With Allophone: A Yearlong Trial

by Cindy Heinen
2010
Also see: The article, Gathering Information Using Research Project Gathering Information Using EVPMaker With Allophones

Abstract

This twelve-month trial was designed to determine whether or not information not known to a participant could be requested and received via Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) using EVPmaker with allophones.

A target object was left undisturbed in the same location at the beginning of each month for twelve months. Participants were asked to use only EVPmaker with allophones to produce a sound file containing the information identifying the target. To qualify submissions the project manager screened them for reasonableness. Those possibly containing usable information were submitted to a listening panel of people who were familiar with EVP but who did not know the identity of the target. If a majority of the listening panel heard information as reported by the participant, the submission was considered a valid submission. Submissions were rejected if a majority did not hear what the participant heard. Valid submissions were screened for a positive response by the project manager for inclusion in the study.

This trial did not produce positive responses based on the study’s protocol. However, the abundance of non-protocol EVP captured in the study might suggest EVPmaker is not suited for the type of communication this study was designed to capture. Also, participant knowledge of the target might have to be reexamined as several targets were identified either before the target was placed or after when the participant knew what the target was. Future studies may wish to look at these non-protocol results when designing a follow up study.

Introduction

Background sound is often used as sound energy during the recording of Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP). This sound may be ambient noise in the environment or sound purposely added to the recording environment such as the hiss of a radio tuned off station, flowing water or the sound of a fan. These imported sounds are said to supply the sound energy entities need to form voices.

While these sound sources can result in EVP, some practitioners proposed that the sounds or frequencies of the human voice would be optimal for the communicating entities to use to generate a voice. Different methods of experimentation using human vocalizations have been tried including foreign language recordings, some of which were edited and clipped to produce random bits of vocalizations with no discernible words or syllables. Radio-sweep using modified radios popularly known as “ghost boxes” or “spirit boxes,” has also been tried. This involves rapidly changing the tuning dial of a radio to produce pieces of speech.

In the late 1980s, Stefan Bion developed a computer program that he likened to a sound grinder. The software program, called EVPmaker,1 uses a random process to select segments of a buffer in which a raw, audio input file has been loaded. The resulting output file is a stream of randomly arranged short sound segments from the input file. EVP are thought to be formed via manipulation of the random selection process.

In 2008 Stefan Bion offered a file containing seventy-two allophones generated by SpeakJet™ 2 that could be used as the input audio file for EVPmaker. The output of these randomized allophones from EVPmaker, while robotic sounding, were used successfully by some researchers to obtain what they felt were meaningful and relevant communications.

Because of the standardization provided by using EVPmaker with the allophone file provided by Stefan Bion, the program was a good choice to use in a controlled study of EVP. All participants, individuals who attempted to record EVP communication for the study, would be using the SpeakJet™ Allophones2 as the sound source to input into EVPmaker.

Protocol

The study was designed to ask each communicating entity to perform a task that would indicate understanding and cooperation. This task was to view a specific object that was set out at a specific location. The communicating entity was then instructed to tell the participant what that object was through the participant’s copy of EVPmaker with allophones.

Study question: Can the identity of a target object be recorded in the EVPmaker output file which is of sufficient quality that a listening panel is able to agree on its content?

The Protocol:

  1. A target object unknown to participants was placed in the same location at the beginning of each month for twelve months. Sufficient information about the location to uniquely identify it in the world was announced.
  2. Participants, who responded to the public announcement, conducted EVPmaker sessions using the allophone file provided by Stefan Bion, but otherwise using any EVPmaker setting. They asked that the target be identified in the output file. There was no limit on the number of attempts.
  3. Knowing only that the target was an object, participants listened to the output files and determined if a response had been recorded. Whether or not it was a likely response concerning the target object was up to the judgment of the participant.
  4. Audio files the participant determined could include names of the target were sent to the project manager.
  5. The project manager compared what the participant heard to the target. If the project manager agreed that the target was indicated in the file, it was sent to a listening panel.
  6. Not knowing the target object, the listening panel individually reviewed the file and noted what if anything was said in the file. That information was sent to the project manager.
  7. If a majority of the listening panel heard information as reported by the participant, the submission was considered a valid submission; if not, it was rejected. Valid submissions were screened for a positive response by the project manager for inclusion in the study.

Trial Personnel

The people who made up the study team were the project manager, the target keeper, three listening-panel members, two alternate listening-panel members and the participants.

  • The project manager developed the trial protocol, oversaw the project, communicated with the target keeper, listening-panel members and the participants, analyzed the data and wrote the monthly and final reports.
  • The target keeper was in charge of putting a new target into place every month.
  • The listening-panel members would review any audio files sent to them by the project manager.
  • The alternate listening-panel members would be enlisted to review audio files if one of the original three listening-panel members could not participate.
  • Participants were anyone who wanted to take part in this trial and could follow the study’s protocol.

Targets

The target for each month was taken from a list that had been prepared prior to the start of the yearlong study. The target objects for the year were only known to the project manager and target keeper. The target keeper would find objects that she felt fit the predetermined list of targets. She would then submit a picture and a brief explanation of the object to the project manager. On the first of the month she would place only this object on a specific shelf on a shelving unit in her home. The object would remain there undisturbed for the entire month. This target object would be taken away and replaced with the next month’s target on the first of the following month.
The following list shows what was requested and what the target keeper put into place for each month. A synopsis of her comments concerning the targets has also been included.

evpmaker_study_targetsMay: An abalone dragonfly pin designed by her husband.

June: One of the target keeper’s recorders.

July: Pink roses in an engraved black vase with “4546 B INDIA” on the underside of the vase.

August: A blue teacup with painted flowers on it. “JAPAN” was stamped on the bottom of the teacup.

September: Zephyr scissors with “CLAUSS NO 78 USA” on one blade. They had blue handles with white paint and black gunk on them. The target keeper noted that she has had them for twenty-five years and thinks of them as “our work scissors.”

October: I Am That, by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj. It is not a “holy book” in the traditional sense, but the teachings within are certainly considered to be sacred by many.

November: Candle made for the target keeper by her son while in elementary school. It has layers of blue, yellow, red and orange wax poured into a baby food jar.

December: The target keeper’s favorite radio-sweep radio, a Duracell KP028 crank flashlight/radio, also referred to as a “3-in-1.”

January: A child’s pair of BluBlocker sunglasses that belonged to the target keeper’s son when he was little. The word “Taiwan” is printed in white on the inner right arm.

February: A peacock feather given as a cat toy by the pet store.

March: A red, flexible bracelet with the words, “Stronger Now.” The bracelet was bought from two girls who started ARCHFoundation.com.

April: A hammer with very faded print on both sides. One side reads “Diamond Island” and the other reads “Burro Cigars.”

The pictures of the targets (right) and what the project manager was told about them suggested that other target words could be applied to a target. Responses that were considered acceptable for this study had to be words or phrases that contained a word that could be used to identify the object. For example, in March the target object was a bracelet. The bracelet itself was a red, flexible bracelet of the type often used as a charity fundraiser. The best word for the target would be bracelet, but band or wristband would also be acceptable. Words that would be considered adjectives for the bracelet like red or flexible would be noted but not considered a positive response.

Participants

Participants for this trial were required to use only EVPmaker with the SpeakJet™ allophone file provided on Stefan Bion’s EVPmaker website. They were allowed to record their sessions using recording equipment of their choice. Files thought to contain information about the target were to be emailed to the project manager, along with text of what the participant believed was said. Inclusion of the practitioner’s voice was considered a valuable plus. Altering the audio file through filtering or noise reduction was not allowed.

Participants did not know what target objects were other than that they could fit on a standard-size wall unit shelf. They also knew the general location of the shelf that held the object. This was at the target keeper’s home in California on the middle shelf on the right-hand side of the wall unit.

After a recording session, each participant was to analyze and interpret their recordings while listening for a reply to the question: “What is the target object on the target keeper’s shelf?” If they heard something they felt might be the target, they would submit an email stating what they heard along with the audio attachment to the project manager.

EVP from EVPmaker is considered an opportunistic form,3 meaning the message is formed from available sound segments in the buffer. But output may also be used as noise for transform EVP 3 which are voices formed from background noise. Participants could submit either type of EVP for this study. If the participant’s interpretation of their submission identified that month’s target object, the project manager would send the files to the listening panel.

Listening Panel

A listening panel was organized to review any files that might contain words that indicated the target for that month. It consisted of three primary and two standby individuals who had been enlisted before the study. The listening-panel members did not know what the target objects were and did not talk to anyone about their analyses. After reviewing the audio files, listening-panel members sent their interpretation of the files to the project manager. The project manager then compared the listening panel’s interpretations with that of the participants who sent the files. If two out of three of the listening-panel members heard something phonetically similar to what the participants heard, the submission would be considered a positive response.

Results

In the twelve months of the trial, 648 audio files were submitted. In August, two submissions matched the target object, and in December, three submissions were a match. These submissions were sent to the listening panels but none met the protocol which stated that the target the participant heard must also be heard by at least two out of three of the listening-panel members to be considered a positive response.evpmaker_study

Non-Protocol Observations

Although not what this trial was designed to find, some interesting things did surface during the year of the trial:

  • There were seven possibly positive responses that were recorded in September but that appeared to refer to the October target object which was a holy book. The target keeper chose I AM THAT by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj for October. This book has a black and orange cover and the back of the book is orange. In September, the project manager received seven submissions from three participants that indicated a book. They were: “red book,” “green book,” “bible,” “Book is the key,” “scripture,” “a certified orange book(let)” and “popular book.” The listening panel reviewed all the files and out of the seven, three were identified. They were:
  1. Book is the key.
  2. Certified orange book
  3. Popular book

While these could not be counted as positive responses for the trial, the project manager felt the results should be noted for a number of reasons. First, up to this point in the study, this was the first time that a specific word, “book,” was repeated frequently and was submitted by several participants. Second, some of the references to the target, while not validated by the listening panel, did seem to point towards a holy or spiritual book.

Finally, the project managers and the target keeper both knew what the target was. But in addition to this, both had a connection to the target being prepared for October. The target keeper placed a book she felt connected to because of the book’s wisdom. The project manager, when developing the target list, felt that a holy book would be the one target that would receive the most positive results. She was anticipating the October placement of the book throughout September. While one cannot rule out coincidence for these results, could the knowledge of what the target was and the intentions of the project manager and the target keeper have played a part in the results?

  • Group intentions and how they affect the outcome of an event is being studied by scientists. The Institute of Noetic Sciences’, “The Effects of Distant Intentions on Water Crystal Formation: A Triple Blind Replication”4 results suggested that ice crystals formed from water exposed to distant intentions were more aesthetically pleasing than ice crystals formed from water from a control group. And the majority of Lynne McTaggart’s intention experiments5 have suggested that intention can affect plants and human project outcomes. EVP and participants’ intentions might also lend themselves to some interesting studies.
  • As documented in the chart, three submissions were accepted by the project manager for the December target, which was a radio favored by the target keeper for radio-sweep. These submissions were “Her radio,” “The answer … radio,” and “Transistor.” The project manager accepted “transistor” because small, handheld radios were often in the past referred to as “transistors.” Knowing what to listen for, the project manager could identify these responses but the listening panel, who did not know what to listen for, did not hear what the participants reported hearing. The question arises that, if the listening panel knew what the participants heard, could they have picked it out of the audio file?
    How much does confirmation bias affect the analysis of skilled listeners? There were instances after the month’s target was revealed that participants reviewed audio they recorded during the month of that target and subsequently reported to the the project manager that they found audio that matched the target. The effect of knowledge about the target during the recording process needs to be explored and possibly reconsidered.
  • Another common result was the recordings of what participants felt were communicating-entity comments. Most of these comments were normal EVPmaker random selection EVP. Most were quite clear and many commented on the communicating entity’s ability or lack of ability to be able to help with the trial. Also on a monthly basis, there were submissions that were comments directed, by name, to the participant or to the project manager. Some submissions were negative in nature and a few did not make any sense. While several participants submitted these “comment EVP,” the majority were submitted by one participant.

Listening Panel Challenges

Throughout the trial, the listening panel was sent audio files to listen to and analyze. None of the listening-panel members knew what the targets were. Often, what the listening panel reported hearing was not phonetically close to what the participant heard. They also seldom agreed with one another as to what the same audio file was saying, if they heard anything at all. This may indicate the challenges one faces when trying to understand and analyze very short audio clips from EVPmaker using allophones.

The clipped, robotic sound of the short audio files, along with having no word cues, may make it difficult for listeners to find any recognizable words. It might prove useful to submit longer audio files to the listening panel so they could hear the participant’s voice asking the question, then have the communicating entity’s reply. However, this has its own sets of challenges as the communicating entity did not always come in after the question was asked. The entity responses and comments could come in anytime during the recording sessions.

Words created through EVPmaker, while having proper vowel sounds, may have dropped consonants, for example, the word “hammer” might be heard as “ammer.”6 Since EVPmaker voices seem to create modified words it might be useful to train the listening panel to be able to identify these “new words.”

Number of Participant Challenges

Several things need to be noted that may have had an effect on the results. While 648 submissions were sent to this study, the number of participants was low. There were never more than four participants per month and often there were only two or three. Also, from August 2010 until the end of the study, the bulk of the submissions were from only one individual. So while the sample size was respectable, the number of different participants was very small. The study was designed as a group project. Having a greater number of participants could likely have changed the results. The reason few people participated may have been because trying to find an unknown target in a sea of vocalization fragments is a difficult task.

Another point to note is the rigidity of the trial’s protocol itself. It is often apparent in the recording of EVP that what works for one person does not necessarily work for others. Also, successful techniques have been known to sometimes show a decline in productivity for no apparent reason.7 All these points should be addressed in the development of follow-up experiments.

Conclusion

Based on the files submitted by a small number of participants, the results indicate that gathering specific information (a target) that was unknown to the participants was not accomplished using EVPmaker with allophones and following the protocol for this study.

Although not a part of this study, it does appear that “comment EVP” that identified the target was frequently recorded. These results suggest that following this trial’s protocol, EVP could be recorded using EVPmaker with allophones but specific informational EVP was infrequent. The reason for this remains unknown.

The “holy book” results in September might offer a nudge towards what else might be needed to obtain information-gathering communication. An experiment could be designed to compare the number of targets identified between participants who know what the target is and those who do not. A similar study could be done to compare the results of participants who spend time having focused intentions towards a target and those who don’t. A participant’s knowledge of the target might also play into this idea about intention.

The development of such intention experiments would need to take more into account than the technical aspects of EVP communication. It also would have to explore if consciousness; intent and attitude play a part in EVP communications.

Finally, knowing what to listen for and how to interpret the speech coming through EVPmaker might need to be addressed. A tutorial for participants and listening-panel members on the communicating entity’s unique formation of speech in EVPmaker might change the outcome of any future EVPmaker experiments.

Acknowledgment

The author wishes to express her appreciation and thanks to Tom Butler for his guidance during the course of this trial and assistance in the preparation of this paper. Also the author wishes to express her gratitude to the individuals who assisted in this trial including the persons who took on the positions of target keeper, listening-panel members and all those who were participants in the study.

References

  1. Bion, Stephan. EVPmaker. tonbandstimmen.de/evpmaker/index_e.htm.
  2. SpeakJet,™ speakjet.com, Magnevation LLC.
  3. Butler, Tom. “Locating EVP Formation and Detecting False Positives,” atransc.org/locating-false-positives/, 2010.
  4. Radin, Dean, Nancy Lund, Masaru Emoto, and Takashige Kizu. “The Effects of Distant Intentions on Water Crystal Formation: A Triple Blind Replication” Petaluma, Institute of Noetic Sciences, Journal of Scientific Exploration, 22, No. 4, pp. 481–493, 2008.deanradin.com/papers/emotoIIproof.pdf
  5. McTaggart, Lynne. The Intention Experiment: Using Your Thoughts to Change Your Life and the World, Free Press, 2007. ISBN-10: 0743276957, ISBN-13: 978-0743276955. theintentionexperiment.com
  6. Butler, Tom. “EVPmaker with Allophones: Where are We Now?” atransc.org/evpmaker-study-where-are-we-now/, 2011
  7. Butler, Tom and Lisa Butler. There is No Death and There Are No Dead. Reno: AA-EVP Publishing, 2004, atransc.org/books-atransc/

Computer–Based Analysis of Supposed Paranormal Voice

The Question of Anomalies Detected Voice and Speaker Identification

by Daniele Gullà, ©Daniele Gullà – All Rights Reserved
Interdisciplinary Laboratory for Biopsychocybernetics Research, Bologna, Italy

1. Listening to the sound material: between psychoacoustic perception and electroacoustic analysis

Listening to the material recorded during the Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) or Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC) experiments requires that the listeners pay particular attention. To judge and correctly classify what they will hear, they should have at least an overview of the psycho-acoustical dynamics of the human auditory system, and the fundamental principles of phonetics and acoustics.

This lecture will address these subjects and provide useful cues for considering the complexities of listening to and decoding the sound material which is fundamental to conducting serious biopsychocybernetic research (Note here that “biopsychocybernetic” is used as an alternative to the more obsolete “parapsychology” and “paranormal”).

1.1 First Stage: one or more subjects listen to the sound material.

In this stage, the personal characteristics of each listener must be taken into account. The human ear and the cerebral centers responsible for sound decoding have peculiar features that are unique for each subject.

The path of the sound vibrations goes through the outer ear duct, the tympanic membrane, the hammer, the anvil, the stirrup and the oval window, up to the cochlea, which is filled with a special fluid. A thick cord of nerves connects the cochlea to the brain.

The widespread belief that the human acoustic perception range goes from about 20 to 20,000 Hertz (cycles per second) seems to be inadequate. Some recent discoveries have shown that a person is also able to hear the so-called ultrasound when the transmitter directly touches the head bones, so that the sound does not have to travel through the air. However, human perception averages these signals so that only one tone is heard.

We hear all frequencies between 20,000 and 70,000 Hertz at exactly the same higher tone that we can hear in the air. A peculiarity of the human being is to have—somewhere inside the ear—a sophisticated spectrum analyzer which is capable of breaking the sounds up on a harmonic basis in much the same way as is seen in Fourier analysis. It would therefore explain the particular sensitiveness and accuracy of human hearing faculties compared to animals which also have less complex analyzers, with a lower dynamic sound capacity. For example, consider the complexity of the compound sound, which becomes grandiose in a symphony, and how sophisticated the human ear must be to distinguish the smallest nuances of every instrument.

1.2  Second Stage: differentiation of the sounds of language.

In addition to the subjective analysis made through our ear, an objective electro-acoustic analysis is useful. In fact, our ear could interpret some sounds, which occur in succession with a peculiar rhythm and intonation, as parts of a melodic chain of a language. This also occurs if the sounds do not actually come from a real human verbal source but from noises produced in a particular sequence, which can lead to a linguistic interpretation of the noise. This is referred to here as “psycholinguistics.” Please refer to Figure 3.

The problems encounter in decoding such sequences of sound essentially depends on the listener’s comprehension skills. Every person is different as far as the interpretative skills of sound are concerned. Some people are able to catch either small differences or sound nuances, or to reproduce at will sounds already heard and mentally compare familiar sounds with new sounds. When, for example, people study a foreign language, they are inevitably inclined to “hear” the sounds of that language as sounds of their mother tongue; but, after a little practice, they can begin to compare the new sounds with familiar ones, finding differences and similarities. Therefore, if they want to correctly pronounce the new language, they must exercise their ear to recognize new sounds.

The capacities of learning new sounds could explain the hearing differences between subjects who conduct EVP experiments and subjects who do not: EVP experimenters have selectively trained their ears to listen to those peculiar sounds.

Most of the sounds which surround us, including language, are made of various types of waves that are complex tones which do not always show a periodic pattern. A complex tone can be considered as the algebraic sum of more sinusoidal signals, each one with a given frequency and strength. If we know these two parameters for each sinusoid, we can determine the spectrum of the complex signal we are examining.

If the signal is periodic, from the breakdown of each sinusoid we will find frequencies which are a multiple of a frequency called the “fundamental frequency.” The fundamental frequency is usually the sinusoid having the lowest frequency and the highest sound intensity; the others are called partial or harmonic components.

The spectrum of a periodic complex signal, such as a human voice as shown in Figure 2, is discontinuous: it is a so-called, “line or discrete spectrum.” The spectrum of a pure sound is made of only one line (frequency), whereas the spectrum of noise is usually made of a spectrum called “continuous” (Figure 1) where the lines are very thick and placed one on top of the other, so that they make a continuous thickening (or, in some bands, like a noise made by some consonants). Therefore, the first classification of the sounds in different auditory types can be based on the discrepancy between the periodic and aperiodic vibrations (harmonic and non-harmonic spectra). This discrepancy is what we usually call “sounds” and “noises.”

cgulla2004_voice_analysis_1
Figure 1: Spectrum of a white noise

 

cgula2004_voice_analysis_2jpg
Figure 2 – Spectrum of a human voice

 

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Figure 3: Rhythmical noises which can be linguistically interpreted (Bersani-Trevisan)

Among the language sounds, the sounds called “vocoids” (vocalic) are usually of periodic type (simple tones), while the sounds called “contoids” (consonantal) are noises or have some noise components. In the spoken human language, the single sounds come together in a continuous connection: not only is the vibration curve of each letter affected by the letters between which is included and among which a common aura is produced, but also by the sounds which come before or after it in a given length of time.

1.3  Third stage: comprehension of the elements which characterize a human voice.

As we have just described, the complex tone which composes the human voice (but also many musical instruments) is made of a sequence of sinusoids. The sequence which has the lowest frequency is called “fundamental frequency” and the following sequences with a higher frequency are called “harmonics” and they can be odd or even multiples of the fundamental frequency.

In the human voice, the sound intensity, the timbre and the audibility are largely due to the number of harmonics in the acoustic spectrum. The voice of a child with a high tone has very few harmonics; the average voice of a woman has more harmonics, and therefore, it is more comprehensible. The voice of a man with a deep tone is far more comprehensible because it is richer in harmonics (more thickening).

The peculiar timbre of a human voice also depends on the position of the so-called “formants.” For example, the human voice can be extensively modified by the path it makes from the larynx to the outside, since more resonances are made in certain frequencies than in others. The range of possibilities is practically endless and a specific peculiar pattern of the harmonic spectrum results from each arrangement of the vocal path.

The study of the formants is particularly effective in research concerning the relation between the resonances of the acoustic sources and the timbre. In this field, the human vocal apparatus is the most expressive, and perhaps, the most complex system. Other sound sources cannot change their resounding features. In fact, the variations of timbre in musical instruments can only be caused by affecting the dynamic of the vibrant body but not the instrument resounding features, which apart from structural alterations, cannot be modified.

On the contrary, in the human vocal characteristics, the subject can modulate the timbre not only changing, as far as possible, the dynamic of the vocal chords, but also changing the use and the width of the resonant cavities. In the usual cadence of verbal speech, the total number of movements needed for uttering words from the lungs to the vocal chords, the lower and upper resonant cavities, the tongue and the lips, is about 50/60 actions per second. That is why the qualitative modulations of the human voice are undoubtedly more varied than any other sound source.

In actual fact, the vocal tract works like a filter, strengthening some group of harmonics called “formants.” In an adult, the resonances due to the oropharyngeal cavity are produced at about 500, 1500 and 2500 Hertz. They correspond to the values of the frequencies of the first three formants: these values allow us to mathematically calculate the vocal tract length that is about 17.5 cm. It goes without saying that the acoustic resonances change following the kind of sound produced and the subject producing it.

The Italian formant values are slightly different from the French or Russian ones, or those of other countries. Also, the same Italian formant values are different if they come from different regions or belong to dialects with or without a different accent.  Moreover, as far as the main vowels of the Italian language are concerned, they correspond to different values which can be separately ascribed to each vocoid. The values of the first two formants—the most important—are usually sufficient to hear the differences among each vowel (i, e, a, o, u) as shown in Figure 4.  The features which characterize the human voice are countless and it is important that the EVP/ITC experimenter is able to distinguish them clearly in order to compare them with the anomalous recorded sounds. It is clear that, at this stage, we should take into account the qualitative and quantitative characteristics of the analyzed evidences in order to make a correct measurement. A bad recording quality partially jeopardizes the precise reading of the plots we want to interpret.  Moreover, we could lose or hide some important spectrographic, morphologic and structural characteristics which would lead to lost information.

1.4  Fourth stage: detecting anomalies

Taking into account the main properties of the human voice, we should be able to know the nominal deviation from the predictable values of the analyses. In this field of researches, the phonetician comes into play. This is the person who studies the Articulatory Phonetics and Tonetics. The phonetician can recognize the type of spoken language following the so-called Phonetic Transcription Standards which use symbols to correlate any kind of sound to a language.

cgula2004_voice_analysis_4
Figure 4: Values of the first two formants (F1 and F2) with reference to the Italian, French and English vowels

 

cgula2004_voice_analysis_5
Figure 5: Examples of some different articulatory postures for three Italian vowels (from left: i, u, a)

This is the most complex stage, both for the phonetician who makes the measurements and for the EVP/ITC researcher. They both must devise a standard classification of the acoustic events judged anomalous, in accordance with tables and parameters of comparison, and show the predictable deviation percentages from the standard.

2. Examples of analysis made on “unusual voices.”

Figure 6 and 7 refer to the analysis made on a magnetic tape where the voice of a Gracula Religiosa, a bird known also as Hill Myna, has been recorded. In this example, we have examined the word “Renato” that the Gracula has uttered on request of its trainer. The anomalies that I am going to describe will be clearer if you will look at Figure 8 and 9, where I have tried to faithfully reproduce the same word with my own voice, trying to imitate the bird voice. At the bottom of the diagram, we can notice the strange configuration that the computer gives us about its virtual reconstruction of the acoustic vocal tract.

The example certainly cannot be the voice of a human being!

In this case, having changed my voice, the “O” sounds more like a “U” but it can be represented in the table with almost normal values for the human voice. At the bottom, the vocal tract is normally structured.

Somebody will ask why we hear the word “Renato” uttered by the bird. It is a simple, and at the same time, a complex answer. The solution partly lies in the acoustic perception physiology and in the connections made by our cerebral database, when it is stimulated by a melodic sequence with particular linguistic attributes. In practice, the computer tells us that those sounds do not exactly correspond with the word “Renato,” as it is in the usual human elocution, but with a sound melodically similar that our brain decodes as such, and makes the appropriate changes.

cgula2004_voice_analysis_6
Figure 6: Voice of an imitating bird (Gracula Religiosa–common name Hill Myna) which seems to say the word “Renato.”

 

cgula2004_voice_analysis_7
Figure 7: Spectrogram and medium spectrum of the vowel “o” in the word “Renato”
uttered by the Gracula Religiosa.

If you make the difference between the average values of the first two formants of the analysed acoustic evidences, you will notice that—even if they are very different (718/1129 and 380/790 Hz)—their ratio is almost the same (410 against 411). It therefore explains our auditory sensation, since the formant ratio of the “O” does not change.

Something similar happened to a dolphin which could imitate the human voices with a higher register (high frequencies). It was significant that, besides the melody and likeness to a human voice for the Gracula, the ratio of the formantic structures (resonances) were similar to the values in the human vowels.

How the bird can learn sounds from us that do not belong to its language is another field of study. It is enough to know that some birds called “polyglot” or “imitator” are able to imitate the vocalism of other species. The phenomenon is also called “vocal mimicry.”

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Figure 8: My own voice while I am imitating the bird cry uttering the word “Renato.”

 

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Figure 9: Spectrogram and spectrum of the vowel “O” uttered by myself.

3. Some examples of analyses of sounds of presumed bio-psycho-cybernetic origin.

In Figure 10, we can see the spectrogram of a presumed anomalous voice recorded by microphone on magnetic tape by Michele Dinicastro (Research Manager of the Biopsychocybernetic Laboratory) in a silent environment. The voice would seem to pronounce the word “Gesù” (Jesus).

The spectrographic analyses show an approximate formantic structure almost without fundamental frequency and periodic vibrations typical of a voice of human origin. As you noticed from the spectrogram, the fundamental frequency and the laryngeal vibrations are not present. We can partly explain this datum because the voice is whispering.

In Figure 11, we notice in the top image the oscillogram of the voice, in the centre the trend of the fundamental frequency and at the bottom the virtual reconstruction of the vocal tract. It is interesting to notice that the fundamental frequency F0 is only detected in the last part of the sound “U” (in the dampening phase), as well as the vocal tract, which shows the presence of laryngeal vibrations typical of sustained sounds, like vowels.

cgulla2004_voice_analysis_10
Figure 10: Microphonic voice of presumed paranormal origin that seems to pronounce the word “Gesù.”

 

cgula2004_voice_analysis_11
Figure 11: Presumed paranormal microphonic voice which seems to pronounce the word “Gesù.”

The section with more acoustic power (“Ge”), which corresponds to the central part, does not have the fundamental frequency F0 and laryngeal vibrations. Therefore, the shape of the vocal tract is not outlined.

In the “U,” which is indicated with the vertical lines, the vocal tract has normal dimensions but anomalous structure. The involved zones have excessive dimensions in order to get out this sound with a correct posture. In addition, the pharynx, the epiglottis and the larynx are moved forward and are too long.

cgula2004_voice_analysis_12
Figure 12: Table of the formants (F1 and F2) detected in the word “Gesù.”

Figure 12 shows the value of the first two formants (F1 and F2) relevant to the “u” vowel in “Gesù.” The black spot indicates the average position of the formants and the type of the used phoneme. In this case, the sound corresponds to a slightly open “u” with average values ranging between the “o” and the “u” vowels. In the Anglo-American phonetic alphabet the vocoid position corresponds to a sound like “hood.” As it often happens in the Italian language, the length of the final “u” is short and confirms that the explanation given by Michele Dinicastro is correct.

Since in the “e” vowel which comes before, the formantic tracks are broken and there are no laryngeal vibrations, the automatic program does not show the formant chart, but if you look at the spectrogram just examined, you will notice some areas with a sound thickening traces at 617 and 2588 Hertz, which correspond to the values for a little closed and aphonous “e” sound.

Figure 13 shows a parametric analysis of an EVP recorded by Anabela Cardoso, which evidences the lack of information in the formant structure and in the sound dynamic. Many graphical sections of the analyses show the presence of three formants with a poor bandwidth and a progressively constant temporal trend. Some noise indications are detected with moderate thickening traces of pseudo harmonic components.

The progressive listening made in sequence of these sounds show a verbal elocution which is decoded by the listener as follows: E\RIO\DO\TEMPO.

The analysis of the vowel frequency range is quite difficult and the lack of laryngeal vibrations does not allow a reconstruction of the vocal tract and its phonetic representation on the formant chart. It practically can be considered as sounds structured in a segmental way which, if heard with a certain uttering speed, take on informational and linguistic meanings for the listener, something like a kind of a “quantic noise manipulation,” which is typical of the communication channel.

Even if there is a signal which is characterized by a great saving of energy, the decoding would seem correct because the compacting bands roughly correspond to those of the relevant vocalic sounds. If we had more spectral information, we could have identified further anomalous elements in the acoustic indexes between the place of articulation and the way of articulation, thanks to a more detailed analysis. Their classification is as follows:

Indexes of place, classified in three categories:

  1. Locus of transition of F2
  2. Locus of transition of F3
  3. Frequency of noise

Indexes of way, classified in six categories:

  1. Form and speed of  the transitions
  2. Locus of transition of  F1
  3. Noise presence
  4. Noise length
  5. Continuity or discontinuity of the connections, intensities and relative lengths to differentiate hard and voiced consonants

    cgula2004_voice_analysis_13
    Figure 13: EVP received by Anabela Cardoso saying E\RIO\DO\TEMPO.

4. Summary of the resulting anomalies in the preliminary stage of the study

  1. Lack of the fundamental frequency or its partial presence with multiple fragmentations.
  2. Lack of the vibration of the vocal chords in timbre sounds with or without the fundamental frequency.
  3. Formantic structure sometimes replaced by a noise thickening in the relevant bands and showing a severe modification or a non-sinusoidal trend.
  4. Anomalous increase in the signal strength of the second formant and strengthening of the upper harmonics, poor melodic texture and fragmentation of the spectrum.
  5. Anomalies in the frequencies, with too high values of the fundamental and formants frequencies.
  6. Anomalies in the time of energy distribution in the whole signal structure which would seem to be made of many small side by side energy-packages, where it is difficult to separate the different structural elements of the spectrum.
  7. Anomalies in the signal periodicity detected in the autocorrelation analysis.
  8. Anomalous changes in the spectrum density.
  9. Anomalies in the utterance; it is difficult to obtain an acoustic chart.
  10. Anomalies in the time flowing with inexplicable slowing down or speeding up of the speech.
  11. Partial or total elision of the consonants.
  12. Harmonic distortions.

5. Comparative analyses for speaker recognition.

The method for identifying a speaker or for comparing an unknown voice (usually coming from telephone or from environmental interception) with a well-known speaker (also recorded) started in 1937, during the proceedings against the presumed kidnapper of Lindberg’s son, the first man to fly across the Atlantic.

At that time, it was only made by an acoustic trial. Later on, with the help of the so-called phonic proof and further improvements, the method developed by L. Kersta in 1962 was used. Kersta’s method consists of analyzing a graphic track, called spectrogram, with instruments like the Sonagraph, made by Kay Elemetrics, or using similar methods of analyses carried out through a computer with a data acquisition card, as in the examples below.

The chances of identifying the speaker are based on the hypothesis that any subject pronouncing a phoneme adapts the oral cavity in an “univocal” way, depending only on the person’s physical characteristics (dimensions of the larynx, of the oral cavity, of the tongue etc.). These anthropometrical characteristics shape the starting spectrum obtained by the vocal chords, intensifying for each vowel, some frequencies and attenuating others, so that they are recognizable.

The graphic of the spectrogram permits the display of these frequencies, showing the increases in sound intensities and attenuations called “formants,” which is shown by the intensification and/or attenuation of some lines in the spectrum. These are typical in a certain numerical range called “range of existence,” of each vowel and also typical, but not as certain as above, of each speaker. Remarks similar to those made on vowels can also be made about voiced consonants, such as \M\, \N\, \R\ since they show a formantic trend. The “melody” of the speech can give us a further parameter of analysis.

Such characteristic can be found in every “non-robotic” speech and can be seen in the spectrogram as a slant in the track corresponding to the fundamental frequency (also called “pitch” or F0).  In addition, the same characteristic can be found in the graphic of the F0 trend which can be drawn through the Cepstrum even if the “natural” melody is always altered in a counterfeit voice (musicality of the language). However, an average difference in highness (frequency or pitch), derived from a good number of elements, can be independent of counterfeits and intentional changes.

Taking into account all these remarks and the qualitative and noise problems due to communication channels, the problems listed above increase considerably when the presumed paranormal voices, which have a peculiar personality, are compared with the voices that the presumed dead people had in their lifetime. The expert very often does not have enough samples to make a sufficiently probative analysis.

The presumed paranormal voices have a spectrum of poor quality with a large amount of noise, maybe due to their own characteristics or to the noises of the communication channel. In messages received in different times and through different experimenters and instruments, the same presumed personalities produce fairly different spectrums, characterized by an unusual fluctuation in the range of frequencies and, above all, in the time domain. These fluctuations can mislead us into either a false identification or a false denial because of the vector segregation systems which works with a multiple fragmentation of the signal. In these cases, besides the statistical and mathematical methods, it is necessary to work manually. That is to say, to analyze their spectrographic tracks.

Since it is impossible to take a phonic sample with the same informational content as is done in the legal investigations, the research shows a high standard of errors. In some lucky cases, when we have the same words to compare, the research is more reliable and probative but it is a very rare event.

I must stress that the comparison must take into account the number of available linguistic events, besides the quality of the acoustic evidences and the noises of the communication channel (radio, telephone, recorder, computer, etc.). In other words, if the same informational contents are available, it is sufficient to have two words which last for two/three seconds to make a comparison. After the differential comparison with a matrix of at least 154 speakers (error of 4.4%) or 928 speakers (error of 2.8%), the result will be highly probative.

It goes without saying that with a speech which lasts at least 10 second and even if it does not have the same informational content, the comparison will be nonetheless acceptable, because some vocoids and contoids (vowels and consonants) for the analysis (10 or more vowels and consonants) are available and useful to draw up an histographic average of the speaker. Here below I will show you some examples of comparison between EVP voices and human voices in order to identify them (Figure 14, 15 and 16).

cgula2004_voice_analysis_14
Figure 14: Comparison between an EVP and the “living” voice of the same person.

Figure 14 shows the matrix formant layout of the EVP received by Anabela Cardoso. In red, are represented the formant distribution values relevant to the paranormal voice of a dead person named Joao. In blue, are represented the formant distribution values relevant to the voice of the same person when he was still alive. This is the person who is supposed to have spoken the EVP message.

Unfortunately, due to the scarcity of the available evidences—that is to say only one word—it is impossible to identify the voice with the help of objective parametrical methods which give us a certain reliability.

The conclusions that we can advance is that such a voice can be considered compatible, that is to say not dissimilar, since the two vocal samples have the tracks of the formants F4 and F5, which mainly characterize the individual features of the speaker, similar for 74%.

A different example concerns a case of identification made on an average of 3 seconds of speech with regard to an EVP recorded in Grosseto, Italy, at Marcello Bacci’s centre.

cgula2004_voice_analysis_15
Figure 15: Measures taken on the voice in life of Chiara Lenzi in two different occasions.
The Euclidean distance of the two vocal marks is 2.58.

Figure 15 compares the voice in life of a young girl, Chiara Lenzi, where the verbal elocution was recorded in two different occasions while she is giving out the following words: UN\BACIONE\A\TE\CHIARA. The Euclidean matrix distance is 2.58 for the same speaker. If we measure this distance on an EVP recorded in Grosseto, where the father, Dr. Giuseppe Lenzi, perceptibly recognised his daughter in the following elocution: UN\BACINO\A\TE\CHIARA, we notice a difference in the spectral values with a matrix distance smaller than that previously measured, as shows Figure 16. In this case, unlike the previous one, we can state that the comparative outcomes between the voices considerably prove the identification.

If it had been a comparison between two voices in a threatening phone call or in a legal case of speaker identification, the expert’s opinion addressed to the judge would have been: HIGHLY COMPATIBLE VOICES.

cgula2004_voice_analysis_16
Figure 16: Comparison between one of the paranormal voices examined in Grosseto, at Marcello Bacci’s laboratory and the voice in life of Chiara Lenzi. The Euclidean distance is 2.37; smaller than the inter-speaker variance previously measured.

6. Conclusions

In some cases, as above, the anomalies are clear and lean toward a high paranormal index of probability. In other cases the ambiguity of the data does not allow a clear interpretation and differentiation of the event. In such cases, a predisposition towards one of the two different explanations, for instance, towards the normality or the anomaly, shall be chosen as a trend. It is therefore necessary to be very careful to interpret the analyzed instrumental data, because there are many variables at stake, as in the case of the “voice” of Gracula Religiosa.

In my opinion, the organizational capacity of these acoustic signals is of great Importance. The signal can change from a simple noise thickening with poor harmonic content and a low informational standard due to a difficult decoding, to a well-constructed and complex harmonic structure very close to the expression of human language, and with the possibility of decoding them with a high standard of informational capacity.

We think that the study of the psi interaction phenomena in Transcommunication, started at our Laboratory in Bologna (www.laboratorio.too.it) in a common research project with French and Brazil, will lay the foundations for improving the knowledge of these unusual phenomena. This works is unfortunately still ignored today by mainstream science and by many academic parapsychologists.

Bibliography

  1. Oskar Schindler (1974), Manuale di audiofono-logopedia, Omega, Torino.
  2. Ferrero-A.Genre-L.J.Boe-M.Contini (1979), Nozioni di fonetica acustica, Omega, Torino.
  3. Muljacic (1969), Fonologia generale e fonologia della lingua italiana, Il Mulino, Bologna.
  4. De Dominicis (1999), Fonologia comparata delle principali lingue europee moderne, Coop. Libr. Universitaria Edit. Bologna.
  5. Gramming-J.Sundberg (1988), Spectrum factors relevant to phonetogram measurement, JASA 83, pagg. 2352-2360.
  6. Alton Everest (1997), Manuale di acustica, Hoepli, Milano.
  7. L.Klevans-R.D.Rodman (1997), Voice recognition, Artec House Inc.,Boston.
  8. B.Randall (1987), Frequency Analysis, Bruel Kjaer
  9. Gullà (2000), Voci paranormali e analisi di laboratorio, L’uomo e il Mistero/8, Edizioni Mediterranee, Roma.
  10. Gullà (2000), Proposta di una metodologia di ricerca per l’analisi di presunti eventi acustici paranormali di origine fonetica, Atti del Convegno del Ce.S.A.P. (Dip. di Bioetica) Università  degli Studi di Bari 27/10/2000.
  11. Presi (1988), Psicofonia e paranormalità elettroniche, in “Esperienze Paranormali”,  AA.VV., Edizioni Mediterranee, Roma.
  12. Presi (2000), Il paranormale in laboratorio: “voci psicofoniche”,”voci telefoniche” e ”voci dirette” a confronto, L’uomo e il Mistero/8, Edizioni Mediterranee, Roma.
  13. Gullà. (2003), Riconoscimento ed identificazione tramite le impronte vocali, Relazione contenuta nel 2° Anno del Corso Multimediale di Biopsicocibernetica del Laboratorio di Bologna.

links: People and Organizations

People and Organizations

(Follow links to list below)

Academy for Spiritual and Consciousness Studies, Inc. (ASCSI)
Afterlife Forums
Afterlife Research and Education Institute (AREI)
Bion, Stefan (EVPmaker)
Builders of the Adytum (B.O.T.A.)
Eternia
Forever Family Foundation
Foy, Robin and Sandra
Guided Afterlife Connection
iDigital Medium
Journal of Exceptional Experiences and Psychology (JEEP)
Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS)
Man and the Unknown
Monroe Institute
Morgan, Christine
New Science
Open Science
Paranormal Societies
Parapsychological Association (PA)
Rhine Research Center
Saturday Night Press Publications (SNPP)
Sheldrake, Rupert
Skeptical About Skeptics
Society for Psychical Research (SPR)
Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)
Stewart Alexander
Tymn, Michael
Weiler, Craig

Name

Website

Academy for Spiritual and Consciousness Studies, Inc. (ASCSI)

ascsi.org

The mission of the Academy for Spiritual and Consciousness Studies, Inc. is to discern, develop and disseminate knowledge of how paranormal phenomena may relate to and enhance the development of the human spirit.

Formally Academy of Spirituality and Paranormal Studies, Inc. (ASPSI)

Afterlife Forums

afterlifeforums.com

From the website:  We are a resource for people who are curious about death and those who have been affected by it. We collect articles from across the web that may be of interest to you, we post original articles by experts, and we link to articles in related fields and let you know why they are important. Our discussion forums are a place where you can ask questions and share your experiences. You will find here a community of sympathetic friends and experts in death-related fields who are eager to help you. Enjoy!

Afterlife Research and Education Institute (AREI)

afterlifeinstitute.org/

The Afterlife Research and Education Institute is dedicated to supporting the research, development, education, and practice on the earth plane that will enable the teams working in the other realms to guide us into discovering and using the methods of communication they are developing.

Stefan Bion EVPMaker

stefanbion.de/evpmaker/index_e.htm

EVPMaker is an experimental software for the generation of acoustic “raw material” for recordings EVP. For this purpose, the program divides any recording of speech into short segments and then plays them back continuously in randomly order. The resulting “gibberish” still sounds like speech, but can’t be understood anymore, and is therefore suited as background noise for EVP recordings. Of course, the program can also be used to generate special acoustical or musical effects.

Builders of the Adytum (B.O.T.A.)

botaineurope.org

From the website: The initials B.O.T.A. stand for Builders of the Adytum, which is a fraternal traditional association founded by Paul Foster Case, followed and extended by Ann Davies.

Builders of the Adytum offers graded lessons based on the mystical teachings and practices of the Holy Qabalah and the Sacred Tarot.

B.O.T.A. is an international, non-profit, teaching and training Order, whose headquarters have been in Los Angeles for the past 60 years.

See also: bota.org

 Eternia  eternea.org

From the website: The mission of Eternea is to support and engage in scientific research, public education and practical programmatic initiatives to further awareness and acceptance of the fact that eternal existence in some form or manner is a fundamental reality for all living things as an inherent quality of nature

Forever Family Foundation

www.foreverfamilyfoundation.org

The Mission Statement is to:

  • To establish the existence of the continuity of the family, even though a member has left the physical world
  • To stimulate thought among the curious, those questioning their relationship to the universe, and people who are looking for explanations of certain phenomena
  • To financially support the continued research into survival of consciousness and Afterlife Science
  • To provide a forum where individuals and families who have suffered the loss of a loved one can turn for support, information, and hope through state-of-the-art information and services provided by ongoing research into the survival of consciousness and Afterlife Science
Robin and Sandra Foy

robinsphysicalphenomena.webs.com

From the website:  The purpose of this site is to promote Physical Mediumship all over the world; to really help anybody who is interested in the subject to learn the basic facts of the different ways in which this rare type of mediumship works. As well as providing an opportunity for seriously interested mediums, groups and researchers to link up and share their experiences – wherever possible – the site is intended to help dedicated groups, circles and mediums to develop Physical Phenomena for themselves to demonstration standard, for the benefit of mankind

Please feel free to join my other and main free website on physical mediumship and its phenomena: physicalmediumship4u.ning.com

Guided Afterlife Connections

guidedafterlifeconnections.com

Our deceased loved ones have never left. It’s just as though they’ve stepped into the next room for a moment. There, in the afterlife, they’re enjoying a life more wonderful and more real than this life, with youth, vitality, and no pain, sickness, or worry. There, they wait lovingly, knowing soon we’ll step in to join them.

This Web site describes a method of grief therapy that goes far beyond traditional grief counseling. In it, people have their own reconnections with their deceased loved ones while still on the Earth plane.

Journal of Exceptional Experiences and Psychology (JEEP)

exceptionalpsychology.org/

From the website: The Journal of Exceptional Experiences and Psychology (JEEP) is an online, international, open access journal dedicated to the exploration and advancement of studying exceptional experiences (ExE), aka, subjective anomalous experiences.

 iDigital Medium

idigitalmedium.com

From the website: Our goal is to give you – The People, a voice – an opportunity to share something special to you that, when combined with the experiences of others, has the potential to demonstrate a well-rounded picture of spirituality in the world today on areas such as life after death, communication with spirit, and personal spiritual development.

Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS)

noetic.org

IONS’ mission is supporting individual and collective transformation through consciousness research, educational outreach, and engaging a global learning community in the realization of our human potential. “Noetic” comes from the Greek word nous, which means “intuitive mind” or “inner knowing.” IONS conducts, sponsors, and collaborates on leading-edge research into the potentials and powers of consciousness, exploring phenomena that do not necessarily fit conventional scientific models while maintaining a commitment to scientific rigor.

Man and the Unknown

wichm.home.xs4all.nl

From the website:  The object of these pages is a call for understanding of some little known spiritual and cultural aspects of life. By widening our horizon respect may grow for the multitude of facets of truth. The wider our frame of reference the more we may see that clinging to a one-sided point of view will lead to fundamentalism and extremism, be it in religious belief or atheist skepticism.

The subjects range from paranormal voices (with sound clips), Javanese mysticism, parapsychology to modern Dutch art. But foremost these original introductions deal with intriguing mysteries and the inner life of man. Please click on the various headings for full information.

Reference Direct Voice: www.xs4all.nl/~wichm/dirvoic3.html

The Monroe Institute

monroeinstitute.org

From the website: The Monroe Institute® provides experiential education Programs facilitating the personal exploration of human consciousness. Over the last 30+ years, thousands have attended the Institute’s residential & outreach programs. Millions have benefited from our educational materials. We serve as the core of a Research Affiliation investigating the evolution of human consciousness and making related information available to the public.

See also: The Monroe Way

Christine Morgan

christinemorgan.com.au

From the website:  Christine is one of Australia’s foremost Spiritual Mediums and teachers of the Spiritual Arts, based in Sydney Australia.

Her natural mediumistic ability stems from a long line of natural intuitive and heritage of mediumship which has been honed through classical training.

Christine has worked for 20 years in the field of Spiritual Mediumship and the Intuitive Arts, throughout Australia as well as internationally, including the USA, Canada, Europe and England.

New Science

dandrasincom.ipage.com/Newscience/Newscience/Home.html

Videographer Dan Drasin asks the questions:

  • Can the material/ mechanist model of reality stand up to modern scrutiny?
  • Has skepticism abdicated its proper role within science and become an ideological end in itself?

See a rough-cut version of his ITC video here.

Open Science

opensciences.org

From the website: The purpose of this website is to act as a portal for open-minded scientific investigations that go beyond the dogmas that dominate so much of science today. The main areas covered include consciousness studies, alternative energy sources, integrative medicine and healing, post-materialist approaches to science and new aspects of cosmology, physics, chemistry and biology. The website includes selected videos, books, publications, journals, and links to the websites of open-minded scientific researchers and organisations. This website also hosts blogs on open questions in science.

Paranormal Societies

paranormalsocieties.com

ParanormalSocieties.com was founded with the intent of creating a comprehensive directory of America’s Paranormal Societies. As someone who has had experiences that can only be attributed to the paranormal, I believe it is important that those in need of assistance be able to find someone in their area quickly. Paranormal Societies are largely non-profit, labor-of-love endeavors, and accordingly do not have budgets for advertising or yellow pages listings.

Parapsychological Association (PA)

parapsych.org

Established in 1957, the Parapsychological Association, Inc. (PA) is the international professional organization of scientists and scholars engaged in the study of ‘psi’ (or ‘psychic’) experiences, such as telepathy, clairvoyance, remote viewing, psychokinesis, psychic healing, and precognition.

YouTube channel at youtube.com/c/ParapsychOrg1957

Rhine Research Center

rhine.org

From the website: The Rhine Research Center is a hub for research and education on the basic nature of consciousness.

The Center presents a wide range of educational offerings in which we attempt to draw together and present the most interesting and challenging current ideas on the nature and enhancement of consciousness. We present conferences, teach classes, and offer workshops, lectures, study groups, and other events. Some of these activities are face-to-face in our Durham NC headquarters, and some are web-based.

Saturday Night Press Publications (SNPP)

snppbooks.com

A friend to all things spiritual. From the website: Saturday Night Press Publications (SNPP) publishes Spiritual/Spiritualist books under what has been termed “vanity publishing”, in that books which “mainstream” publishers will not accept, largely because they cannot make enough money on them, can be put before the public to spread knowledge and awareness of what is possible when we care enough.

Rupert Sheldrake

sheldrake.org

From the website: Rupert Sheldrake, one of the world’s most innovative biologists and writers, is best known for his theory of morphic fields and morphic resonance, which leads to a vision of a living, developing universe with its own inherent memory.

An excellent place to begin learning about Sheldrake’s concepts is by reading his Glossary.

Skeptical About Skeptics

skepticalaboutskeptics.org/

From the website:  Skeptical About Skeptics is dedicated to countering dogmatic, ill-informed attacks leveled by self-styled skeptics on pioneering scientific research, researchers, and their subjects.

Healthy skepticism is an important part of science, and indeed of common sense. But dogmatic skepticism uses skepticism as a weapon to defend an ideology or belief system, and inhibits the spirit of inquiry.

Society for Psychical Research (SPR)

spr.ac.uk

Founded in 1882, The SPR was the first society to conduct organized scholarly research into human experiences that challenge contemporary scientific models.

Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)

scientificexploration.org

Founded in 1982, The Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)is a professional organization of scientists and scholars who study unusual and unexplained phenomena. Subjects often cross mainstream boundaries, such as consciousness, unidentified aerial phenomena, and alternative medicine, yet often have profound implications for human knowledge and technology.

Stewart Alexander

stewartalexandermedium.com/

“Hello and a very warm welcome to my website where I hope that many friends, both old and new, will enjoy learning about my experiences of Trance and Physical Mediumship for a long time to come. I also hope that you will enjoy the additional content available within the pages. Through this online presence, my goal is to encourage the formation and development of more home circles out of which new generations of trance and physical mediums may emerge and demonstrate the wondrous reality of survival of the human soul beyond death and tangible communication between the two worlds.”

My best wishes to you all – Stewart Alexander

Michael Tymn

whitecrowbooks.com/michaeltymn/

Michael is a long-time journalist whose articles have appeared in more than 40 publications. His articles on the paranormal have appeared in Psychic News, Fate, Mysteries, Nexus, Atlantis Rising, Two Worlds, Vital Signs, Venture Inward, Christian Parapsychologist, Dark Lore, Alternatives, Alternate Perceptions, Signs of Life, The Summit, and The Honolulu Advertiser.

He is the author of The Articulate Dead and the editor of The Searchlight, a quarterly publication of the Academy of Spirituality and Paranormal Studies, Inc., based in the United States.

Craig Weiler

The Weiler Psi

Examining Psychic Ability: The People, The Theory, The Science, The Skeptics

[Editor: Also includes news and comment about what is important to our community.]

The Weiler Psi is intended as a resource for people who are psychic, but don’t necessarily do it professionally. I am interested not in the talent itself, but in the people who have it. How does it affect us? How can we feel good about ourselves?

EVPmaker with Allophones: Where are We Now?

by Tom Butler
Previously published in the Fall 2011 ATransC NewsJournal

Abstract

Based on a number of recent demonstrations by multiple practitioners, ATransC commissioned a study to determine the suitability of that technology for real-time, two-way communication. After three years, a “failure to replicate” style report was published. This article is a discussion of procedural concerns with the study and a discussion of lessons learned which may guide future studies.

Introduction

Stefan Bion developed a computer program named EVPmaker which uses a random process to select and combine segments of a sound file to produce a new output file. EVP are thought to be produced by the manipulation of the random process. To make the program more controllable for research, Stefan recently provided a sound file containing seventy-two allophones generated with the SpeakJet™ chip-set developed for robotics.

Allophones are small segments of speech, which when combined, can produce “spoken” words. The output from EVPmaker is a steady stream of allophones, which when intentionally selected by the communicating entity, produce EVP messages.

In 2008, Margaret Downey demonstrated real-time conversations using EVPmaker with allophones. An example here. Other practitioners reported similarly meaningful communications using the same technology, giving reason to think the time was right to closely examine real-time communication.

Thanks to a $10,000 donation to the Sarah Estep Research Fund from a member and a second donation from Becky Estep in memory of her mother and founder of the Association, Sarah Estep, ATransC contracted with Windbridge Research Institute to conduct a study. The assumption was that a report from impartial researchers would be more credible than if ATransC members conducted the study. The research question agreed to by ATransC was:

Can the EVPmaker software using the SpeakJet allophones data set produce real-time answers to questions that are posed by an operator under controlled conditions that eliminate conventional explanations for the results?

The project began June 2008 and the resulting report was published in the Summer 2011 Journal of Scientific Exploration. (Article is here) However, the final report to ATransC was delivered October 2009, and from the following comments from the report, it became evident that it was being reported as another “failure to replicate” article:

Taking all of these analyses into account, this study did not find evidence that the EVPmaker software using the SpeakJet allophones data set can produce real-time answers to questions posed by an operator under controlled conditions that eliminate conventional explanations for the results.

And:

The data in this study tend to suggest that the interpretation of EVPmaker conversations is a subjective process, the content of which is meaningful primarily (and perhaps solely) to the operator.


Examining the Windbridge Study

The study took just over three years from start to published report and cost ATransC about $12,000 including overhead. The ATransC objective was to have independent researchers evaluate the technology and help determine the best protocol for replicating the quality of existing examples. The study consisted of four phases: literature search, data collection, data analysis and final report. A single practitioner was used to produce ten sessions containing EVP with transcripts indicating what was heard. Data analysis consisted of allophone frequency analysis, listening panel, message grading as used for mediumship studies and speech recognition software.

Data Collection

It was possible for the practitioner to conduct the EVP sessions at home because of a computer that was configured to provide much the same controls as could be applied in a laboratory. One practitioner was used. The practitioner could do as many sessions as needed and was tasked with selecting and submitting what was heard as the top ten sessions. Besides the recorded sessions and the data file from EVPmaker indicating the sequence of allophones, the practitioner also provided a written script of what was heard as EVP in each session. As agreed to by ATransC, there were no constraints on what the practitioner asked the etheric communicators to evoke an EVP.

The study produced examples which the listening panel agreed on, but the one with the most agreement was discarded as a statistical “outlier” with the comment:

One of the 10 samples—Session 6 (“I’m here for you”)—fell just under the “hit” threshold with a mean of 2.99 (± 0.12). However, it was determined that this value is a statistical outlier* and its removal from the data set should be considered. If the scores given to Session 6 are removed from the analysis, the resulting updated mean for the remaining nine samples falls from 1.15 (± 0.05) to 0.86 (± 0.05). This shows that the perceptions of the listening panel received an average score less than what was deemed a “slight match” to the operator’s perception.

* Convention dictates that values three times the interquartile range above or below the mean be considered outliers.

It is important to note that Class A EVP are, by definition, “outliers.”

Lessons Learned

  1. Open-ended questions make it very difficult to use the “reasonableness” criterion.
  2. Based on an ATransC advisor’s comments, it is essential to use more than one practitioner.
  3. The data-collection methodology used by Windbridge is an excellent approach to establishing research controls for unattended EVP sessions.

Data Analysis

Frequency Analysis

The frequency of occurrence of allophones in the control sessions was compared with the practitioner sessions because (from the final report):

It was hypothesized that if communication involving English words was present in the Active Sessions, certain allophones might be present more or less often than in the Control Sessions

Not knowing what might come of it, we concurred that this was an interesting test. However, we cautioned several times that the words in EVP produced by EVPmaker are often formed in novel ways. As shown below, the researchers also noted this in the Speech Recognition part of the study. If words in the sessions are heard by people even though they may only be phonically similar to the spoken word, it is unlikely that a change in distribution of allophones between control and practitioner sessions would be detectible.

A second factor is that there may be only a few intended words and many naturally occurring words in a session. For the very many allophones generated in a session (1,675 for a three-minute session), would a Class A utterance even show up in such an analysis?

Lessons Learned

Without more study of this technique, it is very difficult to know if the right assumptions have been made by the researchers. From our assessment, it appears to be unreasonable to say that frequency analysis is a realistic technique for detecting the presence of anomalous influence on the selection of allophones.

Listening Panel

An online listening panel was selected and presented ten sound clips from control sessions and ten from the practitioner sessions. An important point in this test was that the examples used from the practitioner sessions were ten of those EVP reported as being heard real time.

One of the questions asked was whether or not the listener heard words in the samples. An average 73% answered “Yes” for the practitioner sessions and 63% answered “Yes” for the control sessions. Roughly half-heard words in each of the twenty examples they were asked to judge.

The grading system the researchers used has potential for future research, especially the way they graded what listeners reported hearing. However, one word responses were counted, including such words “I,” “yes” and “for.” EVPmaker output includes numerous naturally occurring sounds resembling common one-syllable words. This is apparently the case with the control sessions, resulting in both groups having a similar number of reported words.

Lessons learned

Witness panels do work, but one protocol does not fit all forms of EVP. Word-like sounds naturally occur in EVPmaker output, making it necessary to use grading rules which will ignore one-syllable words. EVP is considered communication, and a second consideration is the reasonableness of a response. For instance, a stand-alone word like “oracle” should be ignored unless the practitioner has specifically asked questions for which it is appropriate. One cannot say the word is present if a listening panel does not agree, but since short words are sometimes spontaneously formed by EVPmaker, care must be taken not to include them in the analysis. A methodology would need to be established for determining which is the case.

Judging Content of Reported EVP

As they do for messages in mediumship, the researchers scored the reported EVP with what the practitioner asked or said and reported that:

Of the 124 responses, roughly one-third (31%, 38) received a score of 0 [No fit]. Similarly, another third (34%, 42) received a score of 3 [Obvious fit]. The remaining third of the responses (35%) received median scores of 1 [Fit with minimal interpretation] (20) or 2 [Fit with more than minimal interpretation] (24). The overall mean was 1.56 ± 0.11, a score at the middle of the scoring range, and the higher end of the 95% confidence interval fell below 1.8.

Based on the distribution of these scores, it was concluded that responses perceived by the operator did not consistently contain information that logically matched her questions.

Of course, there remains the fact that nearly a third of the responses did agree with the practitioner. The conclusions arrived at by the researchers beg the question, “How can a 31% agreement be discarded when one is speaking of something that is not supposed to exist?”

Lessons learned: Content judging appears to be a good way to establish a numerical value to the objectivity of a reported utterance. That is essentially what analysis of results from a listening panel is supposed to provide. The rules of “convincingly objective,” however, should be based on reasonable consensus.

Speech Recognition Program

The researchers “trained” a speech recognition program to understand phrases spoken with the SpeakJet allophones. They then attempted to use that program to find the reported EVP phrases. From the report:

It is evident from this comparison that these 10 phrases that the operator heard during the real-time EVPmaker Active Sessions were not present in the EVPmaker output at those times in the sessions. However, similar vowel sounds were often found in the output. For example, when the operator heard the phrase “you are here,” the allophones being “spoken” by EVPmaker actually “said” something like “ooch k hoe are teer.” Similarly, when the operator heard “I’m here for you,” EVPmaker was “saying” “I oo we’re kk door you.”

Here is the example which was discarded as an outlier.

Reported phrase: I’m here for you.
Allophones from EVPmaker: \OHIY \UW \WW \IYRR \KO \EK \DO \OWRR \IYUW
Associated phonetic sounds: (“I oo we’re kk door yoo”)

The computer program was trained to find words in allophones “properly” arranged to form those words. It is difficult to “hear” what this sounds like by reading the phonetic sounds above. They were heard by the practitioner and many of the listening panel as “I’m here for you,” This is an example of how allophones might be arranged to approximate the intended words. Words that would be understood by a human but not found by the program.

Speech recognition programs have been tried for EVP many times, but to our knowledge, with no meaningful success. We made this clear to the researchers, but they insisted they could make it work. Trying to keep an open mind, we agreed. In fact, they did not make it work and we believe this part of the analysis should have been discarded as a bad idea.

Lessons learned: At this time, speech recognition is not a realistic tool for EVP formed with EVPmaker. It may be useful for transform EVP since forensic voice analysis has been successfully used to compare “living” and discarnate voices.

Discussion

The Journal of Scientific Exploration* is a peer-reviewed publication which has published two other “failure to replicate EVP” -type articles. Based on this and our attempts to communicate with the society, we do not count it as a friend of EVP/ITC. We have no visibility as to who the “peers” were and our assumption is that they are peers in science but not peers in ITC. In truth, being amongst the very few organizations friendly to the concepts of survival and transcommunication, we expected to have to publish the final report in the ATransC NewsJournal.

“The idea that you don’t show anybody, including your colleagues, results until they are peer-reviewed is something new in science. And it’s brought about because of media attention. I don’t think that’s good.”

Richard A. Miller in an interview by Michael D. Lemonick, Global warming “I stick to the Science,Scientific American, June 2011. (Available on docside.com.)

This is the first point we need to make. Peer review is not vetting. It is academics agreeing that the paper is academically sound, while vetting by subject matter specialists would have pointed out that many of the assumptions and procedures were inappropriate for the subject.

The basic scientific method is observation leading to hypothesis which predicts outcomes that can be tested to further refine the hypothesis. This is important and appropriate to the study of transcommunication. However, many of the tools of mainstream science are not appropriate for this study. Most glaring is the statistical discard of an example because it was understood to much more often than the others.

The listening panel and judging content procedures are essentially the same. As is clear in judging content, they are subjective considerations of objective phenomena. Being subjective,  it is necessary to constrain the results to plausible communication. This was done in judging content but counting one and two-syllable words as “Yes” for presence of words only serves to provide fodder for statistical analysis. In fact, the presence of EVP was noted, making the conclusion that EVP were not present unfounded. From the report:

Thus, consensus among participants during the listening panel did not rule out pareidolia (finding patterns in sound that are not there) as a possible explanation for the perceived presence of ITC in the Active Sessions.

And

Based on the distribution of these scores, it was concluded that responses perceived by the operator did not consistently contain information that logically matched the questions.

The researchers had been advised that previous attempts to use speech recognition have failed. Most EVP are formed in novel ways, which is especially true of EVPmaker. In fact, this is the common problem of frequency analysis of allophones and the speech recognition attempt made by the researchers. Both were interesting ideas which after seeing they did not detect phenomena known to be present, should have been abandoned. The report should have looked more like “We tried this but it did not work,” rather than, “We did this and it showed that phenomena were not present.”

Lessons Learned

Here is the research question used in the published report:

Can the presence of ITC be objectively detected in real-time ITC sessions recorded by an experienced EVPmaker operator in which the operator claims successful contact with an external entity has occurred?

There was a shift in emphasis from the original question (at beginning of this article) which highlights the breakdown in communication between Windbridge and ATransC. It is ATransC policy to promote open, candid collaboration and to make research results available to the average person. That was one of our requirements. ATransC is a nonprofit organization and funding this study had the potential of attracting more donations to enable future studies. Instead, the researchers refused to allow us to discuss the study until the final report was published—three years later.

The unavoidable conclusion is that research about techniques and human factors, such as protocols for listening panels, should be conducted by subject-matter specialists, and that work should be vetted by subject-matter specialists. Attempting to force-fit methodologies of mainstream science has not added to the understanding of these phenomena, except to show what does not work. There is a class division between academically trained but uninformed scientists and informed but generally poorly trained subject-matter specialist which impairs collaboration. This makes it necessary to conduct this work with the resources of the paranormal community.

Conclusion about EVPmaker

Despite the conclusions arrived at by Windbridge that EVP thought to be produced by EVPmaker are probably imaginary, there remain important examples of EVP from that technology which are very objective. So what is reasonable guidance for members? There can be no doubt; EVPmaker should not be recommended to people who are new to EVP. The difficult to follow output too easily leads people to find meaning where none was intended.

An example recorded in another study, “Her radio,” illustrates the complexities faced by researchers. Close examination of “radio” shows that it is actually a transform EVP—one formed by morphing noise to produce a clear expression. So in fact, that EVP is not a demonstration of EVPmaker’s capability. It could have been recorded with an ordinary audio recorder using background noise.

The ATransC recommendation will be that EVPmaker should be considered a specialty tool to be used by people already accustomed to recording EVP using a recorder with possible background noise (transform EVP). EVP from EVPmaker should be examined to determine whether or not it is actually transform EVP.

You can access the report on Windbridge’s website: windbridge.org/papers/BoccuzziBeischel2011JSE25ITC.pdf

Spirit Voices

Published by Bill (Dutch) Weisensale
Between 1980 and 1995

About Dutch

The Spirit Voices Archive is below

Bill Weisensale, nicknamed “Dutch,” began taping in 1974 “To prove to myself that it can’t happen, and that EVP was no threat to our ‘comfortable’ material reality. Within a few months, I had done a complete about-face, and my life has never been the same since.”

In 1980, Dutch began publishing the newsletter he titled Spirit Voices. His purpose was to provide a forum to communicate EVP concepts to other experimenters. He understood the need to keep this information available in the public domain.

Spirit Voices is a technical EVP newsletter, and in it, you will find considerable historical background concerning what has been tried before and possible explanations about why EVP is the way it is.

Search Tool

Use the website  search tool in the top-right column to look for items on the website. In some instances, the search may turn up a newsletter. In that case, open the newsletter and use the PDF search tool to search the newsletter.

There is also a Spirit Voices gallery here.

Hint: Set your browser to Review PDF Files with the Browser, rather than Download.

browse-newsjournal-archive

Etheric Studies Literature

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 parapsychology-2  Parapsychology: A Handbook for the 21st Century
Edited by Etzel Cardeña , John Palmer and David Marcusson-Clavertz
McFarland, 2015, ISBN 978-0-7864-7916-0, ebook ISBN 978-1-4766-2105-0
Amazon.com

This is a pretty big deal. The parapsychological community has historically ignored ITC or passed it off as illusion. The editors of this new book invited Dr. Mark Leary to write a section on EVP. He has been an ATransC member and invited me to contribute. By way of his skill in merging inputs, a rational introduction to EVP for researchers has emerged. This book will be a standard reference for researchers for many years to come. Finally, EVP has been given a fair viewing.

 WeDontDieCoverPicture

We Don’t Die
Morgan James Publishing 2013, ISBN-13:  978-1614483823
Amazon.com

We Don’t Die: the video
Available on wedontdiedocumentary.com

The journey of discovery is always a challenge, as long-held beliefs do not easily surrender to new understanding. Sandra makes perhaps your most important journey of discovery easy with

 your-eternal-self  Your Eternal Self
by Rochelle Wright and R. Craig Hogan
Greater Reality Publications, 2008, ISBN-10: 0980211107
Amazon.com

Your Eternal Self contains descriptions of the results of the thousands of studies that have pointed unmistakably to the finding that we are eternal beings having a physical experience. Death is an illusion. Even hard-nosed skeptics described in the book have changed their viewpoints in light of the evidence.

 

 

 afterlife-connections  Guided Afterlife Connections
by  Rochelle Wright and R. Craig Hogan
Greater Reality Publications, 2008, ISBN-10: 0980211123
Amazon.com

Trained facilitators today are helping people have their own afterlife connections with loved ones who have passed away. No medium is involved. People connect directly to their loved ones while sitting quietly with their eyes closed after the facilitator has helped them come gently into a state of openness to the connection. The life-changing connections greatly reduce grief and the impact of traumatic memories.

 zammit_book  A Lawyer Presents the Evidence for the Afterlife
White Crow Books 2013, ISBN-13: 978-1908733221
Amazon.com or Whitecrow Books

From Victor’s Friday Afterlife Report: Would you like to have a clear easy to read summary of all the evidence for the afterlife in one book?  Would you like to be able to explain why near-death experiences are NOT the product of a dying brain? Would you like to have overwhelming evidence that some mediums are genuine? Would you like to have evidence that after death communication is real and know how to recognize it? Would you like to know for certain that your loved ones are safe and well in the afterlife?

 

 ctim_coleman2010-afterlif  The Afterlife Investigations
by Tim Coleman
Available at theafterlifeinvestigations.com

Narrated by Britain’s leading investigative journalist, Donal MacIntyre, this award-winning film presents the most compelling scientific evidence for life after death ever presented in any documentary. It includes never-before-seen material of The Scole Experiment, the work of Marcello Bacci, Electronic Voice Phenomena and the mediumship of Allison Dubois.

Having sat in circles with  physical mediums producing astounding visual phenomena, we understand how difficult it is to bring this information to the public. If you want to have a reason to believe there is a greater reality and that communication across the veil is possible, then we strongly recommend that you purchase this video, set aside a special night with lots of popcorn and invite your friends over to share the moment your worldview changes forever.

 halfway_across_the_river  Halfway Across the River: Messages of hope from the other side
by Dr. Annette Childs
New Leaf, ISBN-10: 0971890226. ISBN-13: 978-0971890220
onecandle.net

Recipient: Eric Hoffer Award 2008

This book is a compilation of fascinating stories that detail Dr. Childs’s nearly twenty years of work with the dying. From deathbed visions, to messages sent from beyond the veil these poignant tales peak curiosity and offer a perfect combination of truth and mystery. The author’s story telling ability will cause even the most cynical among us to pause with wonder. The alchemy of her writing is palpable as readers find themselves misty with emotion one moment and dissolving into laughter the next. Indeed, Halfway Across the River achieves a nearly perfect balance between the mundane and the extraordinary; a rare gift to all.

 new_science  A New Science of The Paranormal
Lawrence LeShan, Quest Books, October 2009. ISBN: 978-0-8356-0877-0
Amazon.com

Lawrence LeShan has been working in psychical research for more than fifty years. With so much experience, one would expect him to have developed a view of the field that is considerably more informed than the view held by the causal observer. A New Science of the paranormal is written in a “this is what I have learned” tone that provides important lessons. As a person who is deeply involved in the study of trans-etheric influences, I am especially interested in his viewpoint about redefining what is appropriate science for the study of things paranormal. LeShan makes a distinction between psychical research (filed study of spontaneous events) and parapsychology (laboratory study of events under controlled environment of the laboratory). This echoes our experience that the parapsychological community conducts important human potential research but that it has not been effective in the study of actual human experiences.

 surviving_death  Surviving Death, Evidence of the Afterlife
Leslie Kean, St Martin’s Press, New York, N.Y. 1994 ISBN 0-312-10436-7
Amazon.com

From Back Cover: Psychic researcher Geoff Viney provides a fascinating new look at the reality of life after death – through examination of scientific evidence, psychic phenomena, and myth. What really happens when we die?  Perhaps no other question has so obsessed people since the beginning of time.  Although skeptics claim that death represents the absolute extinction of life, there is overwhelming evidence that proves otherwise.  In presenting this evidence, Geoff Viney puts the concept of death itself on trial, using as his witnesses the countless individuals who have experienced some sort of personal contact with the afterlife, contact that has resulted in momentous changes in the quality of their own lives.

 true_hauntings True Hauntings, Spirits with a Purpose
Hazel M. Denning, Ph.D.Llewellyn Publications 1996, ISBN 1-56718-218-6
Amazon.comFrom Book jacket: Now Hear the Ghosts’ Side of the Story. Do spirits feel and think? Does death automatically promote them to a paradise – or as some believe, a hell? Real-life ghostbuster Dr. Hazel M. Denning reveals the answers through case histories of the friendly and hostile earthbound spirits she has encountered.  Meet some of the spirits who refuse to leave.
afterlife_experiment

The Afterlife Experiments
Breakthrough Scientific Evidence of Life After Death
Schwartz, Gary, Ph.D. and William L. Simon, Pocket Star, 2002, ISBN: B0001I1KN2
Amazon.com

This narrative puts the reader on the scene of a breakthrough scientific achievement: contact with the beyond under controlled laboratory conditions. In stringently monitored experiments, leading mediums attempted to contact dead friends and relatives of “sitters” who were masked from view and never spoke, depriving the mediums of any cues. The messages that came through stunned sitters and researchers alike. Dr. Schwartz was forced by overwhelmingly positive data to abandon his skepticism and reached some startling conclusions.

EVP Online Listening Trials

by Tom Butler, 2008

Abstract

A common explanation for Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) is that the reported utterances are mundane sounds mistaken as voice forming words. This report describes three online listening trials that were conducted to determine whether or not website visitors can correctly identify words that are thought to be EVP by listening to unmarked sound files.

A second consideration is that it is a popular wisdom amongst EVP practitioners that one must learn to correctly understand EVP. A variety of approaches were tried to test this theory, including polling experienced listeners, using questions in an attempt to assess interest and predisposition to believe in EVP and asking participants to indicate experience in hearing examples. Analysis of the trials is included, along with an assessment of the reliability of the results.

When the total number of words correctly recognized for the three trials is compared to the possible number, the overall percent Recognized words (%Rw) is 25.2%, indicating that at least some EVP do constitute recognizable words.

Introduction

Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) is defined as voices found in recording media, for the presence of which, there is no apparent physical explanation. Lacking a physical cause for the utterances, the working hypothesis most popularly proposed to explain them is the Survival Hypothesis.1 Specifically, that a person is a nonphysical Self (sometimes referred to as the personality, point of view or consciousness) in a symbiotic relationship with a physical body, and at the moment of death of the physical body, the Self is free to “return” to its more natural nonphysical environment. The hypothesis further holds that there is a nonphysical aspect of reality in which the survived Self exists, and from which it is able to communicate “back into” the physical via the mediumship of a still physical person, either technology augmented or via the human channel.

Alternative explanations for EVP which depend on physical principles include naturally occurring sounds mistaken as voice, real but mundane voices in the environment (voice contamination), radio frequency contamination, technology artifacts and sound file processing errors (processing artifacts). Super-PSI explanations that do not depend on the Survival Hypothesis include “echoes of the past” from residual mental energy that is stored in an as yet undefined quantum field and the recording of thoughts of the living. An emerging theory is that the practitioner and/or an interested observer creates an expected reality (experimental result), which is then mistaken as a trans-etheric influence.

Analysis of these theories is beyond the scope of this paper but they are briefly addressed in the Association TransCommunication (ATransC) article, ITC White Paper.2 This paper is written with the assumption that EVP exist but how or why they exist is not addressed, nor is the question of their paranormality other than in the context of what is known about their nature.

Statement of Question 1: That EVP are ordinary sounds mistaken as voice is described as “pareidolia,” which is defined as “the erroneous or fanciful perception of a pattern or meaning in something that is actually ambiguous or random.”3 There can be little doubt that people do sometimes inappropriately assign meaning, but by definition, EVP is not pareidolia; however, for this statement to be true, then words reported in EVP must be distinguishable as words. Further, there should be some measure of agreement amongst listeners as to what is said.

Question 1: Can words in EVP be correctly identified by a website visitor without guidance.

Answer Format: A consistent measure of correctly identified words (Recognized words = Rw) greater than zero would indicate that at least some parts of the example EVP are real words.

Statement of Question 2: EVP are not formed with a biological system, but are formed in novel ways that produce sounds that represent words; they are simulated words. The words are often so arranged that they are not recognized as language without prior training. The assumption of these trials is that website visitors are “average” people ranging in experience listening to EVP from novice to expert. If the result of Question one is affirmative, then there should be a measurable difference in %Rw between novice listeners and experienced listeners.

Question 2: Is there an increase of %Rw with increased experience hearing EVP examples?

Answer Format: People who are experienced in listening to EVP should produce measurably higher %Rw.

Factors Influencing How EVP is Understood

The words of EVP should not be thought of as being formed by a biological system. Analysis has shown that they are simulations of words, and because of an often imperfect simulation, they are not understood in the same way as the same words spoken by a physical person. Because of this, some experienced practitioners have speculated that correctly hearing EVP is a learned ability.

Unusual Arrangement of Formants

ccaaevp2008-hearing_experiment_fig1It is fairly standard practice to classify EVP examples according to how easily they are correctly understood. A Class A voice can be heard and understood over a speaker by most people. A Class B voice can be heard over a speaker, but not everyone will agree as to what is said. A Class C voice is difficult to understand under any condition. An utterance may have one or two clearly understood words. Loud does not equal Class A. The majority of examples are Class C, and probably only one in several hundred are Class A.

The problem with this classification system is the assumption that all listeners have the same ability to understand the words in EVP. However, experience indicates that hearing the utterances is something of a learned ability and understanding them is not unlike learning a new language. That is, the words in EVP are formed in novel ways that often confound an untrained listener. This observation lacks the support of clinical studies, but there are a number of studies and learned opinions which may provide reference for further study.

Novel Voice Formation

Analysis of the voices by the Italian research group, Il Laboratorio4, indicates that the fundamental voice frequency is often distorted or missing in the utterances, as shown in Figure 1.

ccdaniele_gulla2007-hearing_experiment_fig2Figure 2 includes illustrations created by forensic-quality software used by Daniele Gullà at Il Laboratorio. The software creates illustrations showing probable shape of a mouth when speaking particular sounds. The software will sometimes fail to properly determine the shape of the mouth necessary to form some of the sounds in EVP.

An important characteristic of EVP is that they are energy limited; they are typically only a few words and appear as packets of audio energy with about the same average power in the waveform. This is a generalization, but examples are often encountered in which short utterances (one or two words) are relatively loud while longer ones (four or five) tend to be a little quieter or loud with a trailing-off or garbled enunciation at the end. Extraordinarily long utterances tend to be delivered as concatenated packets of words with evident pauses between packets, as if energy is being gathered between efforts. In some cases, different speakers will finish a concatenated utterance, or several speakers might speak in unison, as if sharing energy to “get through.”

ccaaevp2008-hearing_experiment_fig3Figure 3 provides an example of an EVP which is delivered in two packets with an evident pause between packets. At left is the waveform view of the same example shown at the right as a spectral view. The first packet (region 1 in the spectral view) is most easily understood, while the second (region 2) seems to be better enunciated, but is not as easily understood. The second may be a different person attempting to assist the speaker, or alternatively, the single speaker may have achieved more control over the “circuit.”

Region 3 (right end) is a physical person speaking. The EVP would be characterized overall as a Class C. but Region 1 would be considered a Class B. If you look at the spectral view of the same sound file, you will see that area 3 shows definite formant formation while area 1 does not and area 2 is partially defined. The formant levels are indicated by the white hash marks on the right side of the frame. Area 1 is thought to say, “I’m fine” while area 2 is thought to say “love you mom.” I can make out the “I’m fine” quite well, but not the area 2 and certainly not the woman’s quiet voice, even though you see the voice is well defined.

Parenthetically, another point illustrated in Figure 3 is that, when there are clearly defined formants in an EVP, it is possible to put the signal through a low pass filter and take out some of the formants. Doing so usually does not hurt physical speech, but it can change how an EVP is understood. Also, as is noted above, noise reduction tools (not filters) use a sample of the waveform to build a profile, which is then used to selectively remove those frequencies by amplitude. If the utterance is formed from the noise, then in some cases, the utterance is removed or is altered to be interpreted as having a different meaning. So yes, it is possible to cause processing artifacts with inappropriate processing of the sound file, although such processing does not produce an utterance unless it is someone trying to find voice in a near-zero-level, flat-line waveform. In that case, it is possible to make radio-frequency contamination audible.

Hearing with Templates

Alexander MacRae has proposed a possible explanation for why some people have difficulty hearing and understanding EVP.8 In part, he explains that:

  • My article on hearing with templates makes the point that what we hear is not necessarily the same as what we are listening to. And then the point is made that templates are used in all recognition processes, whether recognizing phonemes (elements of words), patterns of phonemes which are words or patterns of words which are phrases. What you actually “hear” is the template. You can also hear all the other noises that are part of what you are listening to, but what you actually “hear” is the template that best fits the sound pattern.
  • If you listen to a sequence of phonemes that you have never heard before, for instance, “Gelarumipalat,” which is not a word in the languages that you understand, which does not have Latin, Greek or Germanic roots, what you will hear is a sequence of phonemes, pure and simple. If you listen to a recognized sequence of phonemes such as “angry,” you hear a word. And if you listen to a sequence of known words in a recognized sequence such as, “I am so angry!” what you “hear” is a meaning.
  • What you listen to and what you hear can be different things. There has to be a distinction, therefore, between EVP that is so good it is close to normal speech in good listening conditions which I call A-type EVP, and EVP that is not that good which I will call that B-type EVP. They are both EVP but they have different behavioral characteristics.
  • With B-type EVP:
    • Different people may hear different things;
    • What is heard using headphones may be different from what is heard using a speaker;
    • What is heard when one is told what it is, may be different from what one heard before being told what it is; and,
    • What one hears at one time may be different from what one hears at another time.”
  • The point is that the EVP researchers are identifying important reasons why EVP are not heard as normal speech. Novel voice formation and missing timing cues that confound the mind are just two of the reasons an average person might think that an example of EVP is just noise, or at best, gibberish. If known problems of missing context, noise contamination and utterances that are spoken too softly or too fast are considered, then there begins to be a case for treating hearing and understanding EVP as a learned ability, not very different than learning a new language.

Listener Expectation

As it applies to psi phenomena, the experimenter effect refers to the influence a “believer” has on the outcome of a process. The hypothesis is that, if the experimenter expects a positive result, it is possible that he or she might psychically facilitate that result. The reverse is true of those who are not “believers.” If there is a psi aspect of EVP, then this same hypothesis should be considered.

The experimenter effect suggests that the person participating in the listening trials might be an unreliable listener because of a predisposition to believe or not believe.

  • Agnosia: Loss of the ability to interpret sensory stimuli, such as sounds or images. (American Heritage Dictionary). Agnosia was once considered a rare condition, but since the work with inattention blindness, it has become clear that it is much more common than previously thought. An audio form of agnosia is also recognized, and what might be referred to as incredulity blindness should be considered in the analysis of listener ability to hear EVP. That is:
  • Incredulity blindness: A category of inattentional agnosia or inattentional  blindness, in which an audio or visual example of a phenomenon is not experienced because it is so foreign to a person’s worldview. There are at least two forms of the experimenter effect. One is the difference in experimental results collected by “believers” and “skeptics.” The second is due to the difference in results reported between a “believer” and a “skeptics.”

Effective Listening Technique

Website visitors volunteer to participate in the listening trials, but do not necessarily agree to follow the recommended procedure for listening to an example. As suggested in the introduction to the examples “…an excellent technique for examining a possible utterance is to select the suspected wave form and listen to it many times. If words are present to be understood, the listener’s mind will sometimes, eventually recognize them.” They are also asked to use headphones, rather than listening via speakers.

This technique is used with an audio management program such as Audition, or the open source, Audacity. Most people experienced with EVP use a similar program, and as is shown in Figure 3, variations in the waveform are suggestive of utterances, so it is easy to select one pulse of the waveform and listen to it many times using the “Loop” feature. Once a word “emerges” into my awareness, it is easy to hear it later when listening to the entire file. In effect, the person learns how to understand words as formed by that communicator.

Experimental Protocol

As of July, 2007, the Association TransCommunication (formally AA-EVP) website received an average of fifteen hundred unique visitors a day, making it an ideal platform for conducting online EVP listening experiments. Also, the site ranks high in search engines, assuring that both people seriously interested in EVP and the idly curious will find the page hosting the experiment.

ccaaevp2007-listening_experimentThe basic protocol utilizes a web page inviting website visitors to listen to audio files labeled with just the word, “Example” and a number. Visitors were asked to type what they heard in an unlabeled text field. This information was sent to an email address and also to a database on the website server.

A conscious effort was made to allow very little tolerance for what was considered a correct interpretation of the examples, and other than as noted below “almost right” words were generally not accepted as correct. The number of words contained in the examples ranged from one to seven words and each word was counted as a possible hit or miss. Allowance was given for the way words are commonly heard or reported. For instance, “Shut up” was counted as one word, because that is the way it is commonly heard, “spirit” and “spirits” were equally accepted, but “I’m” was not accepted when it was supposed to be “We’re.”

The resulting database was manually tallied based on the number of words correctly reported for each example by each participant. Data is not available for how likely any one word in the English language is to be guessed in any single attempt. However, it is predictable that some words are more likely to be guessed than are others, especially if the participant has previously listening to EVP examples on the Internet. For instance, words like “the” and “is” are commonly found in phrases, as are “I,” “I’m” and “we.” Names are often in EVP examples, and some names are more common than others. For these reasons, no effort was made to evaluate the responses based on deviation from chance guessing of words. Instead, a straightforward count was made to establish average percentage of correctly reported words, compared to the total number in the example multiplied by the number of entries.

Normalizing Quality of Examples

Some examples are simply harder to understand, and so, a means of predicting how hard an example is to understand would be helpful for the analysis of the results. In an attempt to establish this measure, participants were asked questions designed to determine their experience in hearing EVP or inclination to believe in their validity as natural phenomena. The intention was to find a way to say that this participant has, say a skill level of five on a scale of one (beginner) to ten (expert), and the %Rw for the person was n%. Then to compare all entries for that example versus average skill level to establish a quality index for the example. Overall, this was not successful, although the data is provided and comments have been made for each trial.

Trial 1

Five examples thought to be Class A were used. In an effort to avoid recognition by participants, they were selected because they were not widely used. Participants were asked to select from the following options:

Please select one or more the following descriptions that best describes you:

  • I have studied EVP and believe they are caused by discarnate people.
  • I have studied EVP and believe that there is a physical explanation for them.
  • I consider myself a skeptical person when it comes to the paranormal.
  • I have been academically trained in the sciences.
  • I am academically trained but not in the sciences.

There was a problem in determining the number of correctly identified words as compared to the participant’s background because participants were able to select more than one response. While the raw data contains this information, it was generalized as:

  • I have studied EVP and believe they are caused by discarnate people.
  • I consider myself a skeptical person when it comes to the paranormal.
  • I consider myself a skeptical person when it comes to the paranormal and I am an academically trained scientist
  • I have been academically trained in the sciences.
  • I am academically trained but not in the sciences.
  • No background marked.

The responses were stored on the internet and also delivered via email to my computer. (The raw data is available for analysis on request.) In the first experiment, a response came as (actual-typical):

Example 1: shut up vicki good job vicki
Example 2: we can’t go in the
Example 3: the voice is mine
Example 4: hi ,mom
Example 5: big speech from the mommy
Studied evp and believes evp:
Studied evp and believes physical:
Skeptical: Skeptical
Scientist: Trained Scientist
Layperson:
Remote Name: nn.nnn.nn.nn
Remote User:
Date: 08 February, 2007
Time: 11:59 AM

After one hundred “qualified” responses, the experiment was stopped because of the time required for processing the results and because there was an almost exponential increase in attempts to sabotage the experiment with misleading responses. Judging by the “Remote Name” (IP address), after indicating they were skeptical, some were coming back a second time, saying they had studied EVP and believed it to be phenomenal and then typing random characters in the response field. All duplicated responses were discarded.

“Qualified” respondent actually wrote a response for at least one example, and the response was something other than random characters. Blank entries for individual examples were counted as a “miss” as long as there was some form of response for at least one example; however, entries with no attempted word identification for all five examples were discarded.

The five examples included nineteen words. Example 1 sounds as if it was “Shutup Viki” repeated twice, rather then the actual “Shutup Vicki, just shutup Vicki.” Many gave the correct first half and the assumption was made that the second half was mistaken as a repeat. (Repeating the example in the same recording is a common practice.) As previously noted, “shut up” was counted as one word because that is pretty much the way it is heard. Thus, a “shutup Viki” response was counted as four words because we feel the participant assumed a repeat. Other decisions made for judging correct word identification included:

“Were” is okay for “Where’s”
“Sticky,” “Dickey” or “Becky” was not counted for “Viki” but “kiki” was
“Than” is accepted as “thanks” but “Think” was not accepted
“Hay” was accepted for “Hi”
“Mommy” was not accepted for “money”
“Bob” was not accepted for “mom”

Trial 1 Results

There were ninety-six “qualified” responses resulting in a possible 1,824 words. There were 612 correctly recognized words (Rw) or ”’overall %Rw = 33.6%”’. Based on how participants answered the profile questions:

  • I have studied EVP and believe they are caused by discarnate people.
    %Rw = 40.9% (35.4% of participants (34 people))
  • I consider myself a skeptical person when it comes to the paranormal.
    %Rw = 28.0% (32.3% of participants (31 people))
  • I consider myself a skeptical person when it comes to the paranormal and I am an academically trained scientist.
    %Rw = 20.0% (5.2% of participants (5 people))
  • I have been academically trained in the sciences.
    %Rw = 27.4% (5.2% of participants (5 people))
  • I am academically trained but not in the sciences.
    %Rw = 28.3% (13.5% of the participants (13 people))
  • No background marked.
    %Rw = 38.2% (8.3% of the participants (8 people))

“Shutup Vicki just shutup Vicki” recorded by Viki Talbott (5 words).
Possible 480 words (96 x 5) with 247 words correctly identified or %w = 51.5%.

“We keep looking for peace” recorded by Lisa Butler (5 words).
Possible 480 words  (96 x 5) with 69 words correctly identified or ”’%Rw = 14.4%”’.

“Where’s mom” recorded by Martha Copeland (2 words).
Possible 192 (96 x 2) words with 85 words correctly identified or ”’%Rw = 44.3%”’.

“Hi mom” recorded by Teri Dabber (2 words).
Possible 192 words (96 x 2) with 84 words correctly identified or ”’%Rw = 43.8%”’.

“Thanks, thanks for the money” recorded by Vicki Talbott (5 words).
Possible 480 words(96 x 5) with 127 words correctly identified or ”’%Rw = 26.5%”’.


Trial 2

A second listening trial was conducted in an effort to better establish an average for %Rw and to determine whether or not it was possible to relate ability to hear to background. Five examples thought to be Class A were used, along with one example spoken by a physical person. Once again, they were selected because they were not widely used, in an effort to avoid recognition by participants.

Background information: The background information participants were asked to provide was different from Trial 1 in an effort to find a more useful way to profile the participants. They were asked:ccaaevp2007-trial2_background

Identifying the mundane utterance: Near the end of the trial, participants were told that one example was mundane and participants were ask to use a provided check-boxes to indicate which one they thought was mundane.

Testing for response fatigue: The number of correctly recognized words (Rw) for example six was unexpectedly low so examples one and six were reversed during the trial to see if the Rw world changed. Such a change in Rw would seem to indicate that participants were experiencing “fatigue” in trying to listen to so many examples.

The EVP, “It’s Jamie” had a %Rw of 56.6% when it was Example 1 and a %Rw of 62.3% when it was Example 6. The differential is 5.7% with a gain for being the last example.

The EVP, “I survived” had a %Rw of 22.5% when it was Example 1 and a %Rw of 27.4% when it was Example 6. The differential is 4.9% with a gain for being the last example

Response format: As in Trial 1, the responses were stored on the internet and also delivered via email to my computer. (The raw data is available for analysis on request.) A response came as:

Normal Speech: Yes 4
Example 1: jeremy
Example 2: im flying
Example 3: we come to get roxanne
Example 4: this feels weird
Example 5: you’re crazy
Example 6: im in your barn
Education:
Subject of education:
Background in evp: Have studied a little
Opinion about evp: May provide proof of survival after physical death
Spam control: 2
B1: Submit
Remote Name: nn.nn.nnn.nn
Remote User:
Date: 07 July, 2007
Time: 05:52 PM

The same rules were applied to grading correctly reported words in Trail 2 as was used in Trial 1. For instance:

  • Any word that began with a “J” and ended with a “m” and a “ie” ending, such as “y” or “e.”
  • Not accepted: Words like “Jane” and “Jenny.”
  • “I’m” was not accepted for “I”
  • “Survive” was accepted for “survived”

Trial 2 Results

The mundane example “Will you tell me the grump’s name?” was not counted in the tally. The maximum number of responses for the remaining five was 217, but as few as 184 were counted in one example because some participants made no entry. Overall, there was a possibility of 2,844 recognized words. 855 words were recognized for an average of 30.1% (Overall %Rw = 31.0)

“It’s Jamie” recorded by Ginny Sawyer (2 words).
Possible 434 words (217 x 2). 249 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 57.4%

“It’s Frank” recorded by Karen Mossey (2 words).
Possible 426 words (213 x 2). 207 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 48.6%

“Will you tell me the grump’s name?” recorded by Martha Copeland (7 words). This is a mundane voice spoken by Martha Copeland.
     Possible 1365 words (195 x 7). 449 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 32.9%

“We’re still in spirit” recorded by Vicki Talbott (4 words).
Possible 832 words (208 x 4). 191 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 22.9%

“Tell her it’s Satan” recorded by Martha Copeland (4 words).
Possible 736 words (184 x 4). 102 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 13.9%

“I survived” recorded by Martha Copeland (2 words).
Possible 416 words (208 x 2). 106 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 25.5%


Trial 3

Trial 3 was an attempt to determine whether or not it was reasonable to ask participants to estimate their previous experience in listening to EVP examples. Participants were also asked to identify any organization with which they were affiliated. This question was intended to permit identification of a control group, such as a teacher’s students or members of the ATransC. All examples were recorded using an audio recorder as transform EVP (transformation of available noise into words), except for one recorded using the radio-sweep method as an opportunistic EVP (just in time sounds selected to form words). See Locating EVP formation and detecting false positives. (Radio-sweep is accomplished with a modified radio popularly known as “ghost boxes” or “spirit boxes.”)

Response format: As in the other trials, the responses were stored on the internet and also delivered via email to my computer. (The raw data is available for analysis on request.) A response came as:

Example 1:  NO ONES HELD ME
Example 2:  ROB IS PEEKING CAN HE HELP THAT
Example 3:  THIS IS SOOO DIFFICULT
Example 4:  HEAVENS THE BEST
Example 5:  YOU SHOULD MOTHER _ _ _ _ A
Example 6:  HELLO
Posit science results:  7.25B
Organization:  AAEVP
Experience:  8
Spam control:  2
B1:  Submit
Remote Name:
Remote User:  xx.xxx.x.xxx
Date:  02 February, 2008
Time:  08:08 PM

IP addresses were examined and multiple entries from the same IP were deleted, except in the instances in which the reported words were identical. In identical, duplicated entries, only one was counted; the assumption being that the duplicate was accidental.

The same rules were applied to grading correctly reported words as was used in the other trials, so that:

  • Death was accepted for dead
  • Catherine was accepted for Cathy but not captain
  • McTaulk not accepted for talking
  • Shaw, Sha, Shraw, Shah and Saul were accepted for Shawn but not Sean, Sal or Saw
  • Talk was accepted for Talking
  • Help was accepted for helping
  • Death was accepted for dead
  • Merrill was accepted for Marilyn
  • Words like Kevin not accepted for Cathy
  • Help me was not accepted for Helping but was given one word for help
  • Weak was accepted for Week but not speak

Trial 3 Results

results of your test below, but this is optional.197 entries were accepted for a possible 4,334 words to be recognized. 804 words were correctly recognized for an average of 18.6% (Overall %Rw = 18.6%).

  1. “Joeys helping” Recorded by Margaret Downey. 2 words, had a possible 394 possible (2 X 197), 121 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 30.7%
         42 responses were “Someone help me” or close variation of this.

  1. “Not this week. We can help” recorded by Margaret Downey. 7 words (Radio Sweep) had a possible 1,379 possible (6 X 197), 34 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 2.5%
         “Have to speak” or “Do I have to speak,” was a common response. There were 100 “speak” responses, and if “speak” had been accepted for “week,” %Rw would be %Rw = 9.7%

  1. “This is Shawn talking” recorded by Margaret Downey. 4 words, had a possible 788 possible (4 X 197), 343 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 43.5%
         7 responses were “This is so difficult” and 6 were “This is from the top.” “This is” accounted for most of the hits for this example.

  1. “Cathy, you’re dead” recorded by Margaret Downey. 3 words, had a possible 591 possible (3 X 197), 216 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 36.6%
         60 responses begin with “Kevin.”

  1. “You should never step out” recorded by Lisa Butler. 5 words, had a possible 985 possible (5 X 197), 83 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 8.4%
         40 responses began with “This is” and 20 began with “we should,” “said” or “shall.”

  1. “Marilyn” recorded by Lisa Butler. 1 word, had a possible 197 possible (1 X 197), 7 words were correctly identified or %Rw = 3.6%
         6 responses were “Hell,” 56 were “Hello,” 20 were “Help” and 16 “Sarah.”

Experience Hearing EVP vs. %Rw

ccaaevp2008-experience_hearing_evpThis plot shows the distribution of (self-reported) experience and %Rw. Each the number in each point represents the number of entries represented. The average experience level is about 3.6 with an average %Rw = 20.3% The two numbers for experience level 10 is without and with (second number) the single result of fifteen correctly recognized words. (The total numbers reported here deviates from the overall average because some people failed to indicate estimated experience.)

The graph does not include entries that did not offer an experience level.

If understanding EVP is a learned ability, then an improvement in %Rw should be seen with more experience. But as can be seen in the table below, the %Rw is almost flat. one possible explanation for the lack of improvement may be the human nature tendency to overestimate personal ability. It is difficult to know how much experience one has, or how “good” one has become in listening to EVP when interested people are so few and far in-between.  For this question to be properly asked and answered, it appears that a standardized hearing and experience tests would need to be administered before the actual listening trials are conducted.ccaaevp2008-expereince_vs_percent_heard

Posit Science Results

ccaaevp2008-graph_posit_scienceAs a way to evaluate how well participants hear voice in noisy environments, we asked participants to take the Posit Science Speech in noise” hearing test (No longer available) You will be asked for the results of your test below, but this is optional.

Nineteen people reported a Posit Science result. -15 is the best possible result. The average was -6.8 with an average %Rw = 19.4%. Overall, participants had a %Rw = 19.4%, indicating that hearing ability alone is not a major factor in the ability to understand EVP.

Discussion

Question 1 was to test the pareidolia hypothesis, and if %Rw was greater than zero, to establish parameters for how EVP are heard. Whether or not EVP are mundane sounds mistaken as voice should be able to be determined by whether or not sound files thought to be EVP can be heard to say what EVP experiments think they say. With an average percent recognized words or %Rw = 36% for Trial 1, %Rw = 30% for Trial 2 and %Rw = 18.6% for Trial 3. Based on total number of words recognized for all three trials, the overall average of %Rw = 25.2%, it seems clear that at least the examples used in this exercise are composed of sometimes intelligible words, and therefore, are not figments of an experimenter’s imagination.

Stats

3 trials
17 examples (One mundane voice and one radio sweep, the rest are transform EVP made with a plain old recorder.)
510 participants
9,002 possible words
2,7271 words correctly recognized.
25.2% Overall %Rw

Question 2 addressed the idea that EVP are formed in novel ways that produce sounds that represent words, and that the words are often so arranged that they are not recognized as language without prior training.

  • In Trial 1, people who indicated that they have studied EVP scored a %Rw of 40.9% (34 people), as compared to 28.4% for the other participants combined (62 people). This is a difference of 12.5%
  • In Trail 2, people who have recorded EVP had a %Rw of 33.0% (14 people) while the people indicating having no experience with EVP scored 21.9% (79 people) for a difference of 11.1%.
  • In Trial 3, %Rw based tallied by self-reported experience levels was nearly flat from no experience to considerable experience.

The results of Trial 1 and 2 seem to indicate that learning does improve performance, which seems to support the hypothesis that one reason people new to EVP often report hearing EVP as just noise is that they have not learned to hear the utterances. However, participants were asked in Trial 3 to estimate their experience in hearing EVP, and for the most part, reported experience versus %Rw did not support the self-hypothesis that learning is required.

Cooperation of the Participants

During the first trial, the editors of Wikipedia active in the EVP article at the time were told that there was a trial under way. Directly after that, responses began to be received that were first marked as being from a skeptical person and then the same IP came back one or more times marked as being from a “believer.” The responses also changed from an apparent honest effort to hear the words to mere random typing or obviously wrong responses. This escalated so that it was necessary to discontinue the trial when the majority of responses were of this nature. Wikipedia is controlled by editors who are ideologically in line with and strong defenders of mainstream science.

Single responses cannot be excluded just because it seems that there was no honest effort to hear the words; however, when there is more than one entry for a single IP, all entries associated with that IP were discounted, even when their %Rw was high. A negative of this policy is that some IP addresses are associated with publicly accessed computers, such as in libraries and schools.

The one exception to discounting responses with duplicated IPs is when the response itself is both consecutive and identical, in which case it was assumed that a mechanical error occurred and the first response was retained while the second was discounted.

A second form of vandalism comes in the form of unreasonable interpretations of an example. In the waveform shown here, changes in amplitude corresponds with the utterance–first part anomalous and the last part mundane. An interpretation of what is said should have some correspondence with the number of amplitude pulses, especially as seen in the spectral view at the right. In other words, if the listener makes an effort to hear what is said, what is typed in the response field should at least approximate the number of sound pulses, even if the typed words are not correct. There were many responses containing far too many syllables to be seriously related to the example. Yet, it is necessary to count such responses because there is no overriding reason to assume vandalism. This does, however, reduce the usefulness of the overall trial.

Wrong Words Reported

An intriguing result of these trials is that the wrong word is sometimes more often reported than the right word. This was tracked in the third trial, and for instance, the last example is Marilyn, but it was identified as “hello” in 56 of the 197 responses. in Cathy, your dead, ‘Cathy” was understood as “Kevin” 60 times. If “Kevin” had been the correct response, the %Rw would have been better than 45% as opposed to the reported 36%.

In some cases, expectations of the listener might make a response more likely. For instance, in the Marilyn, “Sarah” was reported 16 times. Sarah Estep is the founder of the AA-EVP and has recently made her transition. “Help” was reported 20 times, and is another often reported EVP.

A phrase beginning with a “Ca” sound and one beginning with a “Ke” sound is close enough that people might hear one as the other. Participants are asked to use a headset and listen to the example several times, but in fact, one listening via computer speakers is probably best that can be expected. Audio performance varies amongst computers, as does environments, and it should be expected that listening errors will have a negative influence on %Rw.

Improving the Protocol

Normalizing the example: The best practice for grading how easily an EVP example will be understood is the Class A (easily heard), B (poorly heard, but hearable) and C (usually only heard by the practitioner) classification system. This is generally established by the practitioner and is only rarely determined by a listening panel. If the hypothesis that learning is required to understand EVP is correct, then the practitioner is not reliable as a standard for classification, nor is a listening panel.

The clarity of EVP examples varies considerably, and the ones used in these three trials are no exception. They were selected because they are considered Class A, but I have nearly twenty years of experience hearing EVP, and if there is a learning curve, I am at it top and clearly am not a reliable standard. On the other hand, I have also played examples for many people, and have a sense of what the average person can understand.

Another factor in determining the quality of an example is that, if listeners are routinely told what the example is thought to say, they will be more likely to hear the example as a Class A. This is true even when the example might actually be a poor Class B. This is related to the listener’s expectation. For instance, if the example is recorded in a cemetery, the listener is more apt to assume an utterance is dreadful if the person assumes “dead” people are stuck there.

Normalizing listener experience: How well qualified the listener is to correctly hear an utterance is a second issue for hearing trials. As is seen here, self-estimation of ability may not be reliable. Online trials depend on keeping the interest of the participant, and based on the results, the best circumstance might be academic. An instructor can request that students take the necessary screening tests, and then using an affiliation question in the online trials form to identify the control group. Ideally, participants would be given a hearing test using the computer with speakers or headphone that would be used for the trial. In addition, a set of questions could be developed to determine the participant’s experience hearing EVP based on a psychology-style aptitude test.

An Ideal Protocol

  • EVP examples would be taken from a pool of previously screened examples. This screening would be accomplished by using this same protocol to establish a control listening panel, and based on the control group’s performance with examples, a set of examples that have been given a grade. Thus an example would have a factor based on control group score.
  • Website visitors participating in a trial would include a listening test and a survey designed to provide a factor representing experience. Thus the participant would have a hearing score and a score for experience.
  • Participants would then listen to a set of unmarked examples and type what they hear in an unmarked text field.
  • Listening results would be graded based on hearing ability, experience and the quality factor of examples.

Conclusions

With the degree of normalization described above, it should be possible to use the online listening trial protocol to explore subjects such as how experience and/or personality traits influence ability to understand EVP. There is evidence of a cultural influence on how trans-etheric influences are experienced, and the online listening protocol may provide an important means of controlling the examination of these ideas.

EVP is just an objective form of trans-etheric influence, but it is also easily induced. Any time the conceptual world of the etheric is examined by people and their attendant observer influence, variables become involved that cannot be easily controlled. That is one of the reasons deviations from chance has become the primary approach for psi functioning studies. With the on-demand objective results of EVP research, such variables can potentially be controlled, and meaningful results can be expected.

References

  1. Butler, Tom, Survival Hypothesis Explained, ATransC, ethericstudies.org/trans-survival-hypothesis/
  2. Butler, Tom, EITC White paper, atransc.org/itc-white-paper/
  3. Word Spy: pareidolia.
  4. Interdisciplinary Laboratory for Biopsychocybernetics Research, Bologna, Italy (Il Laboratorio)
  5. Gullà, Daniele, Computer–Based Analysis of Supposed Paranormal Voice: The Question of Anomalies Detected and Speaker Identification, Interdisciplinary Laboratory for Biopsychocybernetics Research, Bologna, Italy, ATransC web site atransc.org/gulla-voice-analysis/
  6. Butler. Tom, Characteristic Test for EVP, Best Practices Development.
  7. “Formants,” Handbook For Acoustic Ecology, Cambridge Street Publishing, 1999.
  8. MacRae, Alexander, “Hearing with Templates,” Winter 2007 AA-EVP NewsJournal, atransc.org/theory/macrae-hearing_with_templates.htm
  9. Caroline Watt, Peter Ramakers, Journal of Parapsychology, The, Spring, 2003.
  10. Daniel J. Simons, Scholarpedia, 2007.
  11. Audition, Adobe Systems, Inc.
  12. Audacity, audacity.sourceforge.net/download/windows.

A Visit to the Felix Experimental Group

by Tom and Lisa Butler
First published in the Fall 2010 ATransC NewsJournal

cfelix2010-seance_roomIn August, we had the wonderful opportunity to fly to Frankfurt, Germany to sit with the Felix Experimental Group. The physical medium of the group lives in a lovely old farmhouse in the picturesque suburb of Hanau. The séances are conducted in a World War II bomb shelter, which is the basement of the medium’s house.

We were greeted by the medium’s mother, Elke, who guided us up several flights of stairs to her living area which had a commanding view of a lush back yard. One and two at a time, the circle members gathered at the dining room table in preparation for the séance. They all spoke good English and each took time to make us feel welcome. Elke and circle leader Dr. Jochen Soederling, a cardiologist, and member Alex, gave us information on the background of the group showing us many of the exciting apports that the group has received. The medium briefly came in and greeted us but then went back to the intense meditation that he does before each séance.

At the appointed time, Jochen led us to the basement where we were able to examine the small space where the séance was to be held. The space is about ten by fifteen feet with wood paneling and a large piece of plywood on the floor. A small wind chime is hung from the wood-paneled ceiling just above a bongo drum sitting on the floor. The chairs are arranged in a U-shape which is open toward where the medium sits. The medium’s chair is in a cabinet made of a curtain hung from the ceiling in the fashion of a free-standing shower stall. Closed during the séance, it is shown here with the opening pulled back as it is when the ectoplasm is revealed in the other pictures. At the right, in the above picture, there is a lamp with a shade that covers the red light. This light is covered with a black cloth during the séance to shield the red light from the camera. There is also a camera on a tripod at the end of the room opposite from the cabinet and behind the sitters.

The eight circle members and three additional guest sitters were directed to their chairs. We sat next to each other two seats from the cabinet, on the side with the red light. Circle leader Jochen sat next to me, translating the German communication from the group’s main spirit contact, Hans Bender.

After the medium was seated and the cabinet closed, the lights were turned off and an opening prayer was said. There followed many minutes of the medium’s deep breathing as background music played. We already knew that the medium had learned Holotropic Breathing, which helps him enter into a deep trance, otherwise we might have been concerned about his welfare, as his breathing was loud, rapid and gasping.

As the breathing quieted, Jochen excitedly whispered to me, “Hans is coming.” Soon a voice came from the cabinet introducing itself as Hans Bender, who is a well-known German parapsychologist often referred to as “Spook Bender” because of his dedication to the study of survival.

Hans made some opening remarks and welcomed us and the other guest sitters personally. What a thrill it was to hear one of the most important figures in the history of paranormal research say your name! Unfortunately the recording of the séance failed and it is difficult to remember all that was said. Oh, just to have had a recording of him saying “Tom and Leeeza”!

Hans has said in the past that there are five afterlife chemists who are responsible for the ectoplasmic structures that are used in various experiments throughout the séance. Hans has called this an “ideoplastic materialization séance.” [Ideoplastic is a term coined by Max Vorworm but used here in the sense intended by the German parapsychology icon Dr. Freiherr von Schrenck-Notzing as: Everything that can be remembered, also things the medium has read or observed or is interested in, all these memories can find a materializing reflection in the force field. (Among others: Phenomena of Materialization, Munich 1925)]

Soon there was the sound of the wind chime from the ceiling quickly followed by raps on the ceiling. They sounded for all the world like a herd of gerbils scampering across the ceiling. The sound seemed to come from the direction of the cabinet toward the wind chime. Suddenly, the raps were being made on the wood panel directly behind our heads.

Many excited shouts and exclamations followed as people were being touched. Tom said that he had been touched on his stomach and his head, and later described it as being touched by a soft cloth. Jochen pointed out to me that several people were being touched at one time on opposite sides of the circle. This would have been impossible for any one person to accomplish. There was no sound on the wood floor panel, and at the same time Hans was speaking (through the medium) from within the cabinet.

I let out an involuntary squeal as something that felt like a feather actually tickled my sandaled foot, between my little toe and next toe, before dashing up my chin. I was amazed at the precision of this feat which happened very quickly.

As it became quiet again, we were reminded to keep our feet under our chairs so as not to interfere with the structures. Hans requested that Jochen remove a six inch square luminous plate and place it on the bongo drum which was on the wood floor directly in front of Tom and me. Soon we could see the shape of a hand move over the plate from the side closest to us. The plate was occluded by the hand, first by just a few poorly formed fingers, but at one point, a thumb was also visible. The hand moved back and forth on and off the plate. Then we saw the hand structure coming over the plate from the other direction. The hand-shaped structure actually turned the plate about forty-five degrees before once again appearing on the side of the plate nearest us. After showing us a few fingers belonging to a large hand, a child-sized hand shaped in an “OK” sign briefly moved to the center of the plate. Little did I realize that Tom had been making an “OK” sign with his right hand on his leg and mentally asking that the structure do this!. It did!

ccatransc2010-luminus_plateOur next treat was the handkerchief experiment. We had been shown the handkerchief with the luminous tabs before the lights were turned off. For the experiment, Jochen stood up close to his chair and held the handkerchief out. All of a sudden it was flying around the circle! I was asked to stand up, staying very close to my chair, and hold the handkerchief out. I was told to let it go the minute I felt something. I stood holding the handkerchief out, and was twice asked by Hans from the cabinet if I felt anything. I was starting to panic that my energy was not correct for the experiment when I felt a tug and off the little cloth flew. It came right back rushing up to within inches of my chest!

Hans spoke to us in English about the structures we had been seeing. We also collaborated with the medium and Jochen after returning home to make sure we correctly report the concept. The medium explained that, from our point of view, the “rigid energy field” fills the experimental area as a three-dimensional field. This field enables the compaction of energy/matter. This happens by interlacing the nonphysical with the physical aspects of reality, which are normally considered two independent realms. The medium explained that most of the physical interactions during the séance are made possible by this.

A “thought form” is a collection of related ideas, images and memories and can be thought of as a gestalt “thought ball.” Everyone has a worldview, which is really a collection of thought forms characterizing our beliefs and understanding of our world. Bender said the thought forms from the sitters, as well as from many entities in the etheric, begin to develop in this field in more and more complex and perfect, denser stages.

The forms may be based on what we want to see appear because we have read about them or because we are persuaded they might appear. They all originate from our virtual world of visualized thoughts as mental projections. They may also originate as projections of thoughts of those in the etheric. “Those who are the closest to us in the non-physical,” Hans Bender said in the séance, “will use this opportunity to express themselves. So if sitters are longing to hear from a deceased loved one and then feel a touch, they can be sure the touch is actually coming from that beloved person.”

The medium explained that how complete and well-formed the structure is depends on how well the thought forms are developed in our mind. While they may clearly reflect the intention of the sitters, more often, they seem to be interwoven with the sitter’s subconscious hopes and expectations. If these are conflicted, the resulting structure might be poorly or oddly formed in a similar way.

Jochen was asked to prepare the trumpet and a sitter handed him one that had been on the floor behind the circle. The cabinet was closed and Jochen was able to use a bright flashlight to “charge” the luminescent tape as he had earlier “charged” the luminescent plate. He put the trumpet on the floor, large end down, in the middle of the room.

Moments later, we were able to see the trumpet fall over and away from the cabinet. Bender asked Jochen to move it closer to the cabinet where the energy field was stronger, and this time, the trumpet fell small end toward the cabinet. It moved about on the floor in a jerky, uncertain fashion evidently as they worked to gain control of it. Moments later, the trumpet shot into the air and demonstrated a bewildering flight of control that would be impossible of a physical person in that dark room. The sitters laughed and loudly chanted to add power to its flight.

After the trumpet had been returned to the back of the room, some of the sitters pointed out a light in front of the bottom of the cabinet. This light moved on the floor by our feet. Shortly after this a bright, penny-sized, bioluminescent, blue-green light could be seen flying around the circle. It came within inches of my face and I was amazed at its brightness. The circle leader whispered to us that Hans was saying we needed to raise the energy to keep the light going. Everyone in the circle began shouting what sounded to us like “Fly, fly,” and we started chanting this. The light reappeared and the sitters laughed with excitement as it came close to them. Later Tom told me that he had opened his palm and mentally asked the light to land on his hand and it did! He said that he did not feel the light itself, but did feel a firm structure holding the light as it briefly touched his hand between his thumb and index finger.

When we later asked about the light, Jochen told us that he had concluded that the light was part of a materialized structure. He said it looked like it was embedded into a funnel like structure. However over the past few sittings, the appearance had changed, he no longer saw the surrounding structure and could only see the pure light. Tom reported that when it touched him, it felt firm and smooth, neither hot nor cold and about two centimeters square.

 

 cfelix2010-ectoplasm1 cfelix2010-ectoplasm2

Hans was asked if we would be able to take pictures with the red light. He answered that he would let us know in a few minutes. We were very excited when he came back with a yes! We were told that Hans would tap the floor three times with the medium’s foot when he was ready for the pictures to be taken. At that time, the group would count to ten. At “ten,” the red light was turned on while the curtains were opened by the sitters on either side of the cabinet and Jochen took pictures for a count of five.

cfelix2010-ectoplasm3-handThe red light was between the cabinet and me, and when the curtains were opened, I could only see the bottom half of the cabinet. What I thought I saw was the light on shimmering cabinet curtains. In other words, I thought the curtains were not even opened on that first shot. Later and after looking at the picture Jochen took, I realized that I was seeing a wall of shimmering ectoplasm rather than the curtains. Tom saw that it was coming out of the medium’s mouth and said that it looked wet, very shiny and very white even in the red light.

The next time the curtains were opened after a ten-count, I could see a mass of ectoplasm on the floor next to the medium’s sneaker. The last view was a real shock because there in the middle of the pile of ectoplasm was a funny looking simulation of a hand. Tom even saw it move, as if pulsing to grow larger!

The séance ended after the pictures were taken and we all returned to the top-floor dining room table to excitedly discuss what we had experienced. Most of that is a blur because both of us were in something of a daze from what we had just witnessed.

Thoughts

Tom said that, both with the “OK” sign and the moving light, he mentally asked Hans Bender and the etheric chemists to respond to a specific request and they did. His experiment was unknown to anyone else in the room and with the dark conditions no one would have been able to even see the OK sign on his leg. The structures behaved as if they were under intelligent control by grabbing handkerchiefs out of people’s hands and performing other feats. But this intelligent control was not human; its fast and precise movements, often within inches of a sitter’s face, were beyond any human’s capability. All of this in total darkness.

On many occasions, phenomena were occurring in various parts of the room at a very rapid pace while all of us held hands and Hans spoke from the cabinet. For any of what we experienced to be theatrically produced as if in a dark-room magic show, a third party would necessarily have been secreted into the room without sound and as quickly extracted from the room afterwards. There was no way that this could have happened. There was not one doubt in my mind that the events we witnessed were of paranormal origin.

The Felix Experimental Group is producing important trans-etheric phenomena that can be seen. The séance takes place in the dark but the various phenomena are illuminated. This is very important as most criticism about materialization séances is that they are held in total darkness. We are told that the phenomena happen through the use of ectoplasm but I believe a large majority of people do not even believe in this substance called ectoplasm. The Felix Group is repeatedly photographing ectoplasm and they have been able to do this in front of scientists. They are producing objective evidence from which we can learn.

Tom and I would like to thank the Felix Experimental Group for their warm hospitality and also their sincere desire to understand what is taking place and share this knowledge with others. What they are able to demonstrate expanded my mind with the knowledge that the impossible is possible, and I’m sure Hans Bender has much more in store for us to learn through this exceptional group.

The medium told us early on in our email communication with him that Hans Bender has told them that, worldwide, the vibrational state of spiritual awareness has increased. He said that this vibrational state encloses the earth and all entities and that the way to spiritual enlightenment has become a little bit shorter. Hans says that more physical wonders will occur in the upcoming years and especially the readiness of high-leveled scientists to apply the spiritual to science.

Holographic ITC

This is part of the Implicit Cosmology Series of essays associated with the Trans-survival HypothesisIt has been incorporated into a book titled Your Immortal Self. Some potentially important changes have likely been made to this essay for the book. As such, please consider this essay an early draft.
     Is the metaphysical approach for you? Please read my comments here before getting very far into this essay.


Abstract

A hypothesis is proposed to explain why multiple face-like features are often found in individual frames of recorded video-loop noise.


Introduction

In the video-loop technique for visual ITC, a video camera is pointed toward a video monitor and the output of the camera is connected to the input of the monitor so that the camera “sees” what it has just recorded. A person might expect the resulting optical noise to look like the “snow” seen on an unassigned TV channel; however, in at least some configurations of equipment, the resulting noise has the appearance of patches of light of different brightness rushing toward the viewer from the center of the screen. Some of these will have color if a color camera and TV are used. See the examples at atransc.org/examples/examples_video.html.)

man_woman_faces_webThe bright area in the center is the face of a woman. In the color version of this, you can make out red lipstick. A man’s face covers the right half of her face. He is looking toward your right. Nearly all of the medium-density areas around the two faces are other, less well-formed faces. (We apologize to those receiving the printed Journal as ITC pictures do not print well.)

The working hypothesis is that the patches of brightness in the looped video are areas of relative order that naturally form in chaotic noise because of a process known as stochastic amplification. In that process, a small irregularity in the uniformity of “baseline” energy can be amplified, and in video-loop ITC, those emergent splotches are often shaped like people.

Update: We have been working with the concept of intended order. This concept may be applicable to such phenomena as both audible and visible ITC, energy healing, meditation and morphogenetic fields. The standard model we are using is that trans-etheric influences are the expression of a personality’s intention. Physical people are personalities that exist in the etheric, but are able to inhabit the physical aspect of reality because of the physical body. In effect, people are all the same, but some may not have a physical body. In that way, all personalities influence the environment via intention. Personality brings intended order to chaotic environments.

Examination of individual video frames sometimes shows an astounding number of face-like shapes and some of them are sufficiently detailed to be arguably real faces. There are also examples of this in the Butler Galleries.

Recording ITC

caaevp2004_video_setupThe Techniques section has an article explaining how to record for these phenomena. Some people have had success with digital equipment, but we have not seen the detail exhibited by examples collected using analog equipment. For this reason, we recommend that anyone wishing to replicate this work should use at least an analog camera, and preferably an analog monitor. We use a Canon 8mm ES2000 analog camcorder with a Sony KV20TS32, 20 inch Trinitron color TV. We like using color because the resulting features often seem to have true color such as with skin tones. See the website for technical notes.

The key to recording video ITC is in establishing a display with a good balance of bright and dark areas. The loop tends to be a cycle from all black, through medium bright patches of color, to an all white and back again. The video is at about thirty frames a second, and a cycle from dark back to dark takes several seconds. We record for ten to fifteen seconds and may find thirty to fifty frames from that recording that need examining. Here is an example of a useful video loop:

Who is in the video

You can see that there is no physical input to the system other than electricity and ambient light. It can be argued that there is no physical reason for faces to be in the noise, other than the occasional fortuitous arrangement of light and dark that might resemble a face. Certainly, there should not be faces with clearly identifiable red lips and eyes with pupils. Phenomenal faces are found in many different techniques, but all seem to depend on the transformation of visual energy. Moving water, light reflected from crystals, even audio spectrograms have produced features. Most visual ITC features are of strangers, but there are a few that have been recognized. For instance, using forensic software, a moving water feature taken by Margaret Downey has been favorably compared to a photograph of her long-transitioned great, great grandfather.

There are differences in clarity and detail amongst the different forms of visual ITC, but the common factor appears to be broad-spectrum optical noise and an active analog process such as an amplification circuit. This is the common factor for audio ITC as well.

Based on the Trans-survival Hypothesis, it is speculated that the features are formed by the amplification of a weak psi signal from the practitioner or an interested observer, by the action of stochastic resonance on the optical-frequency noise. We speculate this is a mind-to-mind exchange of information between the etheric personality of the practitioner and the communicating etheric entity. This is believed to occur in the etheric as a nonphysical process.

The information is then transformed into the physical aspect of reality by way of the person’s etheric personality-to-physical body entanglement, and expressed into the physical as a psi signal that represents the practitioner’s impression of what was experienced in the etheric.

evp_conf_presenters_cropped_web
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

While looking at this picture of the 2004 conference speakers, your attention is on Sarah Estep. For the moment, the others in the photo would make less of an impression in your mind’s eye.

The observed effect of one or two well-formed faces in visual ITC may be due to the practitioner’s attention on a specific personality in the etheric. However, there are apparently many other personalities present, of which the practitioner is only partially aware. These background personalities are therefore only poorly formed in the resulting ITC.

The group picture above is an attempt to show how we might be aware of everyone in the group, but our attention is momentarily on one person at a time. In this case, Sarah Estep is clearly imaged, and the other people are only vaguely noticed.

Of course, all of this is hypothetical, but so many poorly formed faces present in virtually every suitable region of optical noise, along with a few well-formed faces, argues that the practitioner (or an interested observer) is the channel for the information and the practitioner’s focus of attention determines what is communicated.

Update: Two theories are emerging as alternatives to stochastic resonance to explain image formation. Stochastic amplification may still be the physical mechanism, but the “small psi signal” my be more complex than previously thought. Examination of the essay on Etheric Fields will show that intended order may be a factor as the etheric personality (still via a physical person’s entanglement) influences the recording process’ formative field.

A second theory is that the faces might be apported from some existing media source. Distortions are evident in EVP that suggest a partially successful transformation of noise into voice and the same might be seen in visual ITC.

Both theories are new and require more vetting, so at this time (6/19/2013) it is best to suspend decisions until more information is available.

Instrumental Analysis of EVP Collected via Sound-Psi Interaction

“SFINGE” PROJECT
by Presi, D. Gullà, G. Gagliardi, G. Lenzi; 2006

Previously published in the Winter 2014 ATransC  NewsJournal
(Digested by ATransC. See: Interdisciplinary Laboratory For Biopsychocybernetics Research [Defunct])

Abstract

The research team of Il Laboratorio from Bologna, Italy conducted a two-year long study of well-known Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) operator, Mrs. Lida Russo of Livorno, Italy. The microphone recording method with a commercial recorder with built-in microphone was used by the operator and professional digital devices were used to monitor the sessions. However, only a few anomalous voices of poor acoustic quality were found upon review of Mrs. Russo’s audio tape. Contrary to the expected, the most interesting voices in terms of quantity and quality were recorded on the digital devices operated by Daniele Gullà.

State-of-the art software commonly used for forensic analysis was used for analyses of the resulting voices. This new approach to EVP research was introduced to the world by the researchers of Il Laboratorio and has revealed many structural electroacoustical features that prove the authenticity of these acoustic events, which now can legitimately be classified as linguistic events.

Introduction

sfinge_projectThe so-called “paranormal voices or Electronic Voice Phenomena ” have been studied for more than forty years and consist of recorded sounds and/or sounds directly audible through the experimentation equipment. These events can manifest spontaneously or as coherent answers to the questions of the researcher.

Research Aim

This Il Laboratorio study of the anomalous voices is called “Progetto Sfinge” ( English: “Sphinx Project”). In order to understand the reason for this name it is necessary to recall the symbolic meaning attributed to the Sphinx as an unresolved mystery. The application of innovative methods of research, and availability of the latest information technologies, has made it possible to investigate the phenomenon through many different perspectives inconceivable until recent years.

Progetto Sfinge’s principal aim is to document differences in the phonic structure of the anomalous voices as compared with human voices. Where possible, the degree of similarity between a voice attributed to a dead person and the voice when the person was alive was compared. The project’s accomplishment has been possible thanks to a generous contribution of the Swedish Foundation Helene Reeder Memorial Fund.

Research Setting

There are many opinions about the nature of the phenomenon. For some, the voices lack objectivity and are the consequences of psychoacoustic illusions (psycholinguistics). Others, mostly those who had direct experience of the phenomenon, say they are strong evidence of survival.

The perception of acoustic signals as human language, and their subsequent interpretation, is the most critical moment in the understanding of speech. The first consequence of this psychic process is the possible interpretation of the signals in many different ways or, as those who study psycholinguistics define them, events of “interpretative plurality.” Many are the factors that contribute to this critical situation such as the ambiguity and fragmentation of the acoustic events or when the listener has a poor understanding of the language.

Even in normal listening conditions, the danger of psycholinguistic illusion is ever-present in the interpretation of voice. This problem is further stressed by listening to ambiguous sounds when there is the wish to “receive” messages from the other side; perhaps when the listener is under emotional stress due to the loss of a loved one (wishful thinking).

Thanks to developing professional competence and the availability of advanced information technologies, after decades of discussions in favor and against this phenomenon, we decided to undertake interdisciplinary research. This research had the purpose of documenting the existence of the anomalous voices and identifying the characteristics that make them different from human speech. For the first time, the new technology has made it possible to examine the acoustic structure of the anomalous voices to clearly define their characteristics and semantic content.

This phenomenon can no longer be considered an independent occurrence. It must be placed into a Phenomenal System1 grouping “all realities, concrete or abstract, which constitute the background of that event; in other words the elements or the parts (the variables) of physic, biological or psychological nature that are integral part of the event itself.”1

For this reason, our research also investigated the role and personality of the person who recorded the voices. The operator is, in fact, an important part of the experiment, and in the final analysis, of the phenomenon. The psychological and psychophysiological analysis of the operator was conducted by specialists in order to identify possible correlations with the resulting anomalous voices.

The experimentation was to have been accomplished through the technique of microphone recording, usually as adopted by the operator. The voices obtained with her recorder were to have constituted the collected data and the object of instrumental analysis. At the same time, a high quality digital recorder operated by Daniele Gullà was intended to provide a reference recording for comparison.

Two experimental cycles were conducted, the first in 2005 and the second in 2006. Mrs Lida Ceccherini from Livorno, widow of Mr Russo, was chosen as the operator. Most operators in this field prefer to experiment on their own and maintain a kind of reserve while displaying distrust towards the scientific researches who impose boring protocols and careful checks to guarantee the absence of possible cheats. However, with exceptional helpfulness and enthusiasm, Mrs. Russo accepted the invitation to be the operator. To Mrs. Russo goes the gratitude of the Il Laboratorio research team for her great helpfulness, patience and above all, for her exquisite kindness.

Research Team

Paolo Presi (Project Manager, Supervisor)
Daniele Gullà (Forensic Audio-Video Consultant)
Giorgio Gagliardi (Surgeon, Psychophysiologist and Psychotherapist)
Giuseppe Lenzi (Researcher, session reports)

Experimentation

During the experiments, Mrs. Russo was very anxious to know if Mr. Gullà recorded the voices on his own equipment rather than worrying if the voices had recorded on her recorder. In fact, the advanced equipment we used recorded clearer and more definite voices in comparison with the same result obtained through Mrs. Russo’s commercial tape recorder with built-in microphone. The higher sensitivity of our equipment allowed also the recording of low volume voices without any confirmation of them in Russo’s tape.

This fact highlighted an interesting aspect of the phenomenon which gives great importance to the equipment and to the role of the operator in the context of recording the voices. One of the causes of this occurrence was surely the low quality of the recorder used by Mrs Russo; however, the main factor affecting the results may have been Mrs. Russo’s attitude during the experiments. She had great expectation for the success of the experiments possibly because the positive results would have given a greater significance and credibility to her experiments. For this reason, I believe her focus on our equipment instead of her own can be considered a very relevant element, which demonstrates the existence of possible psychical projections toward our equipment instead of her own tape recorder.

Examination of Mrs. Russo by the psychophysiologist appeared to negatively influenced her psyche, the people constituting the research group and Mrs. Russo’s assistant. In other words, it influenced the whole psychic complex involved in the experimental sessions.

Listening Survey Results and Their Interpretation

voice_simulationAn unequivocal interpretation of the results was the main requirement guiding the choice of the samples for analysis. People skilled in listening to EVP provided a first auditory test. After establishing an interpretation of what was said in the examples, an instrumental check was conducted.

The electroacoustic analyses of nine samples displayed the presence of considerable structural anomalies even in those samples that came very close to human voice. These anomalies revealed some spectral components and articulations with noticeable deviations from human standards. In many cases, we found relevant disagreement between the graphic representations generated by the software and the uttered sounds. This can be understood as a possible weak influence of over-glottal resonators or as a partial or total lack of the internal speech-organs (e.g. larynx, velum palatinum, etc). In other cases, the software wasn’t able to virtually reconstruct the vocal tract at all.

There are several remarkable anomalies noticed in the fundamental frequency F0 in the examples, such as frequent absence, fragmentation and anomalous values. Very relevant are the cases of absent fundamental frequency and the presence of inexplicable formants. The formants are frequency bands containing groups of harmonics of the fundamental frequency. They are produced in the vocal tract from the fundamental frequency. The presence of formants is inexplicable if there is no fundamental frequency. Psychoacoustics teaches us that the brain has limited ability to reconstruct the fundamental frequency from the upper harmonics.

Spectrograms make it possible to examine the important function of noise in anomalous voice formation. Although noise is always thought to negatively influence voice formation, analysis of over nine examples showed it has a function. In the absence of the fundamental frequency and in the presence of formants, we noticed how their structures can be shaped as a localized noise thickening with an impulsive and not harmonic trend. (In human voice, the formants are sinusoidal like the fundamental frequency which generates them)

Of great interest is, as shown in the spectrograms, such anomalously shaped formants are located in the same frequency ranges of vowels. Their frequency bands can often be shifted toward a higher frequency range while maintaining their ratio. Many researchers in this phenomenon (Carlo Trajna, Ernst Senkowski, Paolo Presi) agree with the hypothesis that the voices could be generated by a process exploiting the background sounds. This hypothesis finds some objective evidence in how the acoustic signal has been shown to sometimes degrade before the formation of the voice and then return during its utterance. As proposed by Carlo Trajna,2 the voices are formed, not with additional or absorbed energy, but simply by exploiting the energy coming from background noise (impulsive or not) at the time of recording.

This hypothesis would also be confirmed by the changes of Shimmer3 value, which increases in proximity of background noise degradation while Jitter4 value remains constant. This finding means noise modulation is mainly in amplitude and limited in frequency. This feature has been noticed by the physician Alfredo Ferraro, famous scholar of borderline phenomena and practiced radio amateur.5

The Jitter values were altered over all the nine samples analyzed. In the case of human voice, an anomalous value for jitter generally indicates pathology in the speech-organs. In this case, this could indicate acoustic events originated by anomalous speech-organs.

The fact that a low-frequency sound from 1 to 30 Hz was recorded, combined with the voice and frequent saturation of the microphone and detector-amplifier with extremely low frequencies (ELF), suggests further research concerning possible correlation with electric activity of the brain. Related to this is a strong, ELF field detected by Gullà during deep meditative process by a group of volunteers. If confirmed by further experimentations, this could open new researching into the interaction between psi and instruments.

sonogram_sfingeA psychological and psychophysiological assessment is provided by Dr. Giorgio Gagliardi and colleagues [in the full report]. However, it appears that no significant finding was traceable to the voices production process. Mrs. Russo is an emotional person with a high social communication attitude. Her manners are open and sincere and she has always shown a strong desire to share her experiences of contacts with the other dimension. She showed a strong worry and sometimes some anxiety about success in receiving the voices. This worry was stronger in our regards rather than her own recordings. She has a strong faith in the survival of human personality after death and is not conditioned by any religious faith. Surely this strong belief helps the formation of this phenomenon.

The different ways through which the voices can manifest appears to depend on the sensitivity6 of the operator, and where applicable, on the psychic support of the experimentation group. The existence of psychic support of others is confirmed in the psychotemporal model proposed since 1992 by Carlo Trajna.7 Particularly, the presence of deeply interiorized conceptual models combined with expectations that seem reasonable to the operator to activate some unknown psychic channel.

sonogram_sfinge2Everyone appears to have this ability to some extent. It could be improved in time by individuals, particularly when a motivated operator regularly practices this kind of experimentation. This quality seems to be supported by a strong inner belief on the possibility to communicate with other levels of consciousness. Since 1985, I called this particular psychological attitude “Inner Attentive Disposition.”

The experimental data obtained from “Progetto Sfinge” provides a biopsychocybernetic interpretation of the phenomenon. In other words, the final effects involve a complex interaction in a mind system. This indicates one or more minds can communicate within the limits of the psychic model of the process held in the operator’s belief system. Such a psychic model would be able to produce physic effects through special action, defined as psychokinetic effect or PK Effect8 in the parapsychological literature.

The fact that different operators obtain voices with different acoustic features, even if they use the same equipment and the same method, appears to be a direct consequence of the different psychic models held by each operator. These different psychic situations would produce different physical effects depending on the model and how it is conceived.

Conclusions

From the electroacoustic analyses performed on the audio samples recorded under controlled conditions, we extracted the acoustic parameters distinguishing a vocal signal. These elements allowed us to identify the phonemes constituting the words we decoded linguistically.

By examining their structures and their anomalies, we were able to assert with documented evidence, that these events exhibit phonetic features associated with the voices. These voices have evident and absolutely original features and are structured and characterized by parameters which deviate from the typical human standards.

The presence of formantic bands, with localized noise strengthening, confers to the voice an acoustic structure close, but not identical, to the human one. The anomalies found where the voices were recorded allow us to affirm the existence of an atypical process of formation which is still today scientifically unknown despite their objective nature.

References

  1. Definition introduced by Dr. Enrico Marabini in La Biopsicocibernetica – una branca delle scienze dell’uomo – La Mandragora, Imola, 2007.
  2. Carlo M. Traina – Ignoto chiama uomo, Salani, Firenze, 1980.
  3. Shimmer: value defining the amplitude fluctuation of a vocal signal based on an average of measurements over 5 periods of F0.
  4. Jitter: value defining the frequency fluctuation of a vocal signal based on an average of measurements over 5 periods of F0.
  5. Alfredo Ferraro – Parapsicologia e…Spiritismo, Età dell’Acquario, Torino, 2004, p. 185.
  6. Sensitivity: term used to indicate the faculties of an individual which allow extrasensorial perceptions (ESP) and psychokinesis phenomena (PK) called by Biopsychocybernetics “Psi Interaction Phenomena.”
  7. Carlo M. Trajna – Il modello psicotemporale, Istituto Gnosis, Napoli, 1992.
  8. John Beloff hypothesized that psychokinesis could not be a force, energy or physical process, but rather a strange result of a direct connection between our mind, the universe and everything in it. He proposed that this action does not need to be a kind of super energy localized in our mind or body but may be a thing happening in certain circumstances still to be identified; an idea or mental intention which is able to automatically force a physical system to express that idea or intention. To summarize, it would be a final event without the need of further process to make the results intelligible (Presidential Report presented in 1975 to the Society for Physical Research of London).

Editor: The formation of transform EVP (voice formed from noise in a recording device) is a fundamental characteristic of ITC. Understanding how EVP are believed to be formed provides guidance in how to use EVP for communication. This study clearly indicates the importance of practitioner (operator) attention and intention and the availability of suitable audio-frequency energy (noise).

Other studies have indicated that choice of recording device is not as important as the kind of noise available for voice formation, but as a general rule, higher quality recorders (little internal noise) are more dependent on external noise.

As demonstrated with forensic-quality tools, the unusual formation of the voice in EVP, which are clearly understood by experienced listeners, causes difficulty for people who are not experienced with EVP. This fact has been demonstrated in the article: EVP Online Listening Trials.

A Research Study into the Interpretation of EVP

Part I

by Mark Leary, Ph.D.
Published in the Winter 2013 ATransC NewsJournal
Read Part 2 and Part 3

Introduction

Anyone who has listened to even a few EVP recordings knows how difficult they are to interpret. Listeners often disagree, sometimes strongly, regarding what a particular EVP seems to say, which raises questions about the validity of each person’s interpretation. Yet, the usefulness of EVP depends on the degree to which investigators can trust one another’s interpretations of the EVP that they record. Although a great deal has been written about the possible mechanisms that produce EVP and the types of equipment that are most effective in recording them, EVP enthusiasts have devoted far less attention to problems associated with interpreting the sounds that are recorded.

After observing repeated disagreements among investigators (and rarely feeling that the interpretations of EVP on paranormal television shows match what I hear), I undertook a study to examine how serious the problem really is. The study that I conducted had two main goals: to document the degree to which investigators agree or disagree on their interpretations of EVP and to create a means of identifying which interpretation of a particular EVP is most likely to be “correct.”

The Study

To obtain a set of EVP for analysis, I contacted a number of paranormal investigators who had conducted systematic investigations at the Ferry Plantation House in Virginia Beach, Virginia. I received over 250 EVP, from which I chose 94 that were among the clearest in terms of having obvious vocal characteristics. These recordings came from eleven investigators who recorded them across seven different investigations. In general, investigators seemed to submit what they viewed as particularly good EVP, all of them recorded without a background noise source.

I then recruited 24 individuals (10 men, 14 women) with paranormal investigation experience to listen to and interpret the 94 audio clips. The raters ranged in age from 29 to 62, with an average age of 46. All but two of them currently belonged to active paranormal investigation groups.

The raters were sent a CD with the audio clips, along with a form for interpreting the EVP and a background information questionnaire. Raters listened to each EVP as many times as needed, wrote down each word that they heard (putting an asterisk for any words they could not understand), indicated any emotion that they detected in the voice, and rated their confidence that their interpretation of the EVP was correct. The background questionnaire asked about raters’ age and sex, their interests and beliefs in the paranormal, and included a brief measure of basic personality dimensions (such as extraversion, emotional stability and agreeableness).

Determining Agreement

Although we can never know for sure what an EVP “really” says, my analysis of raters’ interpretations was based on the assumption that a particular interpretation of an EVP that is made independently by several people is more likely to be “correct” than an interpretation that is made by only a few individuals. For example, if seven out of ten people who listen to an EVP hear exactly the same words, two other individuals hear a different set of words and the remaining person hears something else entirely, the interpretation on which the seven people agreed would be more likely to reflect the actual sounds than the other individuals’ idiosyncratic interpretations.

Thus, to begin, I determined a “consensus interpretation” for each EVP by counting the number of times that raters reported hearing various words. For example, whatever first word was heard by the most raters became the first word of the consensus interpretation. Whatever second word was heard by most raters was the second word of the consensus interpretation, and so on. In this way, I came up with the most common (or consensus) interpretation for each EVP.

With the consensus interpretation in hand, I then calculated the percentage of raters who agreed with the consensus interpretation. This number could range from 0% (no two raters reported hearing the same thing) to 100% (all raters agreed with the consensus interpretation) and is an index of the degree to which raters independently agreed in their interpretations of each EVP.

Of the 94 EVP, the one with the highest agreement (“What’s going on?”) was listed by 83% of the raters. That is, 83% of the raters listed the consensus interpretation for this EVP. However, the overall agreement for the entire set of EVP was much lower. Across all 94 EVP, average agreement with the consensus interpretation was only 21%. In other words, only about 1 out of 5 raters gave an interpretation that agreed with the most common (and, presumably most “accurate”) interpretation.

When analyzed at the level of particular words rather than the entire EVP, average agreement was 35%. Raters agreed with the most common interpretation of each specific word on about 1 out of every 3 words on average.

Some of the EVP not only had 0% agreement, but the various interpretations sometimes differed wildly. For example, one EVP that had no agreement on any words across raters was interpreted as saying, among other things: “Deep inside there’s a pickup;” “Keep those hidden Mr. Gel;” “He comes out here;” “Go outside and just lean on it;” “Get it tight, got to stretch it;” “Don’t try to persuade them;” “Get us out Mr. Kant;” and “I need the guns out if this is what you’ll do.” These various interpretations do not even contain similar phonemes.

Incidentally, the percentage of agreement with the consensual interpretation can be used as a way of assessing the clarity of an EVP. Historically, investigators have classified EVP as Class A, B, or C depending on how easily listeners can hear a message. But calculating the percentage of people who independently agree with the most common interpretation is a more precise and unambiguous indicator of the quality and clarity of an EVP than classifying it into one of three categories. Every EVP would have a score from 0 (no consensus; this EVP cannot be interpreted) to 100 (complete consensus; this EVP is so clear that everyone hears exactly the same thing).

Emotional Content

Raters indicated whether they detected any emotion in the voice. The majority of the EVP (63.5%) had no discernible emotional tone. However, raters indicated that some EVP expressed sadness (9.7%), anger or irritability (8.2%), urgency (7.7%), or happiness (6.3%).

Setting aside the fact that most of the EVP had no emotional tone, when an emotion was detected, on average only 12.7% of the raters agreed that a particular emotion, such as anger or sadness, was present. Thus, raters showed even less agreement in detecting emotion than in interpreting the content of the EVP.

Interestingly, raters’ tendency to hear emotions in the EVP was related to their own personalities. For example, raters who scored higher on the measure of extraversion reported “happiness” in the voices more frequently, raters who scored higher on the measure of agreeableness reported hearing both more “happiness” and more “anger,” and those who scored higher on emotional stability heard more “happiness” expressed. Raters’ interpretations of emotional tone sometimes reflected their own personalities as much as the actual features of the EVP.

Rater Confidence

For each EVP, raters indicated how confident they were that their interpretation was correct on a 4-point scale (where 1 = not at all, 2 = a little, 3 = moderately, and 4 = very confident). Across all EVP, raters’ confidence averaged between “a little” and “moderately” confident (average confidence was 2.5 on the 4-point scale). To see if raters who were more confident of their interpretations were more likely to hear what other raters heard (the consensus interpretation), I correlated raters’ confidence judgments with the number of their interpretations that agreed with the group’s consensus interpretation. The correlation was rather weak, indicating that being confident that one’s interpretation is correct does not usually reflect that other people will hear the same thing.

Differences Among Raters

I calculated an index of personal agreement that tells us how good each rater was at hearing the most common interpretation. Individual raters agreed with the group consensus between 17% and 35% of the time, with an average of 22%. That is, the “best” rater agreed with the group consensus interpretations on 35% of the EVP, and the “worst” rater agreed on 17% of the EVP. When analyzed at the level of the word rather than the entire EVP, the percent of raters who agreed with the group consensus varied from 31% to 51%, with an average of 38% of the words. So, if we play the average EVP to a large group of people, the average person will agree with the consensus interpretation of the entire EVP 22% of the time but agree with 38% of the words.

I analyzed whether any of the characteristics of the raters mattered in their agreement with the consensus interpretation. Although we might expect that experience with EVP might be related to interpretation ability, the degree to which raters agreed with the consensus interpretation was not related to the number of EVP that they had personally recorded, their years of involvement in paranormal investigations, the number or content of paranormal television shows they watched, basic personality dimensions, their age, or the nature of their beliefs in the paranormal. The only variable that was significantly related to agreement with the consensus interpretation was gender. Women’s interpretations agreed with the consensus interpretation 4% more often than men’s interpretations (24% vs. 20%). I’m not sure what to make of this finding.

Most raters’ interpretations were meaningful phrases, but some gave phonetic interpretations even if they did not make semantic sense. For example, on one EVP for which there was no consensus, some raters gave meaningful interpretations (such as “Hey we sung in the chorus” or “That is so great, Cory”), whereas other raters wrote down what they heard even though it didn’t make sense (such as “Hack me some green course” and “Hey peace and grin Coreys”). Investigators should consider whether imposing meaning on an EVP may lead them to “hear” words that help the phrase make sense but that might be incorrect.

The raters also differed in their willingness to leave blanks. Raters were told to use an asterisk when they couldn’t interpret a particular word. Some raters used asterisks regularly, but others did not use them at all. Given that we can assume that no rater was perfectly confident of every word, those who interpreted words they didn’t understand probably made more misleading interpretations than those who admitted that they didn’t understand certain words.

Conclusions and Recommendations

The results of this study suggest that investigators should be less confidence in their interpretations of EVP than they typically are. On average, the most common interpretation of each EVP was shared by only 22% of other people. And, of course, all interpretations other than the most common, consensual one had even less agreement. In fact, most of the raters’ interpretations were not given by any other listener! Furthermore, raters were not particularly good at judging the correctness of their interpretations. Thus, having the sense that “I’m sure this is what it says” does not indicate that other people will agree with one’s interpretation (or that it is actually correct).

These results lead me to offer four recommendations for the responsible interpretation of EVP:

  1. In light of the fact that any particular investigator’s interpretation of an EVP is not likely to be shared by other people and that people’s interpretations are biased by what they expect to hear, investigators should never interpret an EVP for other people without playing it for them several times and soliciting their independent interpretations.
  2. If the interpretation of a specific EVP is particularly important (such as when it is being interpreted for grieving family members), investigators should use a scaled-down version of the procedure used in this study. Have at least 10 people independently listen to the EVP and determine the consensus interpretation, if any. Then report an interpretation of the EVP to others only if a majority of listeners agrees on that interpretation. In some cases, it may be helpful to report more than one potential interpretation, along with the percentage of people who agreed with each one. Providing listeners with such data is a more honest and responsible way to share EVP than to offer a particular interpretation that might, in fact, be idiosyncratic.
  3. Investigators should be willing to refrain from interpreting ambiguous EVP. Providing a questionable interpretation as if it is certain is misleading, if not sometimes dishonest. Just because an EVP cannot be interpreted does not mean it is not a useful piece of evidence, so investigators should not interpret EVP that are unclear.
  4. Paranormal investigation groups and EVP practitioners should have formal guidelines for the interpretation of EVP that minimize the likelihood that they will offer interpretations of EVP—whether to other group members, clients, or outsiders—that are expressed with greater confidence than the objective evidence warrants. Investigators should exercise greater care in sharing their interpretations of EVP, and procedures should be in place to ensure that clients, other investigators and the public are not inadvertently misled regarding interpretations of an EVP.

Read Part 2


learythumbnailsmallWith a Ph. D. in social psychology, Dr. Leary is a research psychologist who studies topics related to self-awareness, motivation, and emotion. He has conducted research on topics such as reactions to social rejection, the effects of excessive self-attention, people’s concerns with their social images, and the relationship between personality and behavior. He is on the editorial boards of several scientific journals in social psychology and recently released a psychology course on DVD entitled “Understanding the Mysteries of Human Behavior.”


Editor’s Note

For an additional study of how people hear EVP, please refer to the article EVP Online Listening Trials in the ATransC online Journal.

“Radio-sweep” is a generic name for EVP thought to be formed using sound produced by sweeping a radio dial. In principle, it produces a form of EVP referred to as “opportunistic EVP.” Please review Locating EVP Formation and Detecting False Positives and Radio-Sweep: A Case Study. Also see the article on page 9: “A Two-Year Investigation of the Allegedly Anomalous Electronic Voices or EVP.”

David Thompson and The Circle of the Silver Cord Séance

by Lisa Butler
A Report on the September 25, 2009 Séance, Winter 2010 ATransC NewsJournal

blue-skies-yonder_link

ccbutler2010-sydney_opera_houseOver the years, we have heard about a materialization medium named David Thompson. He was conducting demonstration séances in the UK and seemed to be the real deal. Montague Keen, member of the Council of the Society for Psychical Research for fifty-five years and secretary of its Survival Research Committee, investigated a David Thompson séance prior to his own passing in 2004. Keen’s professional report was positive, indicating that he felt the phenomena experienced during the séance were genuine. You may remember that Montague Keen also investigated the Scole Group with positive results.

Experiencing a séance like this was on the top of our wish list but always seemed out of reach. Often, by the time we looked up from our work and learned that Thompson would be giving demonstrations, the seats were already booked. This is what happened for several events in the UK in 2007, and the same thing happened when we learned that David had moved to Australia and was demonstrating in Queensland.

In the summer of 2009 a dear friend put us in contact with David’s circle leader, and through emails, we were told that there might be an event in Perth that October which we could attend. We readily agreed that we would go anywhere in order to experience a materialization séance. A few weeks later, another email came, inviting us to attend a David Thompson guest séance in Sydney. Chris, the circle leader and his wife, Rosheen, David’s manager, were very kind and wrote that they try to accommodate people who are willing to travel. To say that we were thrilled is an understatement. Of course it was quite a shock when we found that our travel time would include fourteen hours in the air from San Francisco to Sydney!

Our first two days in Sydney were spent getting over jet lag and seeing a few of the sights. One of the sights we got to experience was what we thought at first was a beautiful red sunrise in fog at Circular Quay. That was until we read the note slipped under our door, warning us not to open any windows or doors because we were experiencing an unheard of dust storm!

Chris and Rosheen asked us to have dinner with some of the members of the Circle of the Silver Cord Thursday evening. That was a wonderful opportunity to learn more about Chris, Rosheen, David Thompson and his partner, Christine Morgan, who is one of Australia’s top mental mediums. We learned that they are all educated, hard working people—an important point since they did not attempt to make money for the guest séance.

Friday night was the big night. Everyone gathered at six that evening and Chris began with a short talk on materialization séances using ectoplasm and the risks to the medium. If ectoplasm is exposed to light, or in some way interfered with by a sitter, it will rapidly retract back into the medium, causing internal and external injuries that could cause death or greatly shorten the life of the medium. David has scars to prove this very real hazard. We needed no further explanation as to why the séance would be conducted in a totally dark room.

We had been told to leave jewelry at home. Nothing was to be allowed into the séance room. Shoes were removed, then everyone was searched by David and Rosheen and a metal detector was used to assure there were no forgotten or hidden articles amongst the sitters.

The séance room contained a small cabinet made with black cloth over a wood frame. The seventeen sitters were seated in a horseshoe with the cabinet where David sat at the open end of the horseshoe. A piece of plywood was placed in the middle of the floor so that we might be able to hear the sound of feet. This was raised so that everyone was certain that there was nothing hidden under it.

ccosc2009-david_bound_in_chairTwo people were picked to inspect everything in the room and to observe David being bound to his chair. Tom was one of the people picked to do this. Chris, Rosheen, Christine, Silvana, Sarah and David Thomson (all Circle of the Silver Cord members) were independently searched and scanned with the metal detector. The room was thoroughly searched and then the medium’s arms and legs were bound to the chair with nylon straps, which were in turn, secured with the kind of cable wraps sometimes used by the police as temporary handcuffs. David was gagged and the gag was secured with a cable wrap. David’s cardigan sweater was secured with cable wraps in each button hole. The only way to release the wraps was to cut them off—a noisy process.

The lights were turned off and a red light was turned on. The door was secured and chairs added with sitters in front of the door. The red light was turned off and we were asked to sing with the music—loud and with enthusiasm. Singing is a way of building the energy, and more enthusiasm means more energy.

We had only finished three songs when we heard the sound of the Velcro holding the curtains in the front of the cabinet being ripped away. Chris switched the music off and asked for everyone to hold hands. David’s friend and guide, William, had come into the room. He asked who was there and was introduced all around. He had previously met most of the attendees who are Australians, and exchanged little pleasantries with many of them.

William then turned his attention to me and asked my name. “Lisa,” I answered, and he asked if he could touch me. He touched my toe first and said, “There you can feel my feet” and then touched my face and asked me what I felt. I responded that I felt his hand. “Is it not real as real can be?” he asked. I told him that it was very warm and very real, to which he responded, “As you can see there is no death.” (At the time I wondered if he knew it was the title of our book.)

Next he asked to touch Tom, and after he had done this he said to Tom, “As you can see, there was no fumbling to find your face, was there?” Tom agreed. William then asked him if he felt he was brought this distance merely to observe and Tom replied that he hoped not. William then said that there was someone from the Spirit realm who wanted to speak to Tom and his “dear lady.”

William asked if there were any questions and a sitter asked if the people on his side kept up with our technology. William responded, “My dear friend, I do not,” and everyone laughed. The person then asked if their technology was above ours and William explained that technology was not a necessity within their dimension. “Why do you need electricity with perpetual light? Why would you need conveyances to get from one place to another when you can do that with your mind and your thoughts?”

Next he was asked how many spirit people had come to witness the séance. William replied that, in his understanding, it would be in the range of one thousand individuals. “Séances such as this between the two dimensions attract a lot of attention within our world, as you can imagine.”

William then took his leave, telling us that he needed to go so that others could come through. It is difficult to explain but there is a noise that is heard when the ectoplasm is used for materialization, the circle leader knows this, and when the sound is heard asks for everyone to hold hands and welcomes whoever is trying to come through. We could tell the next individual was having difficulty talking but Tom said he knew immediately that it was Konstantin Raudive. We were both in shock and we understood why people who receive phone calls from their deceased loved ones say that the enormity of the moment does not sink in until after it is over. Please see the article “Konstantin Raudive Speaks” in this issue for a transcript of this historic conversation. Raudive spoke to us for seven minutes! It is a comfort to know that our pioneers are still interested in we who are learning to communicate via technology.

After Raudive left, a doctor came through and experienced members of the circle welcomed him as an old friend. He crossed the room and proceeded to put his hands on a woman to administer spiritual healing. The woman had been fighting a serious illness.

We were again told that we could stop holding hands and the music, It’s a Wonderful World, was played. To me it sounded like there was another, very distinctive voice singing with us. When the music stopped, Chris asked us to hold hands and we heard the distinctive voice of Louie Armstrong. He is a frequent visitor to the Circle of the Silver Cord séances. He asked Chris to get a harmonica they keep in a container and he played a song for us and we could hear him dancing with the music.

After Louie Armstrong withdrew, a child-like voice announced Timmy’s presence. This boisterous personality is a frequent visitor to the circle and manipulates the ectoplasm that enables many of the strong physical effects. He asked for a trumpet and there followed a rousing Irish jig while we were treated to seeing the trumpet fly around the room, often coming within inches of our faces. The trumpet was a light-weight cone of heavy paper about a foot long with a luminous band on the wide end so that its motion was easily visible. Sitters were shouting with excitement through the entire experience and the energy level was very high. There would have been many collisions had a physical person attempt such a demonstration.

Timmy is very funny and spent time joking with the sitters, making everyone laugh. He asked Chris for his luminous plaque, and with his fingers on it, he circled the room showing his small fingers silhouetted in the light from the plaque.

The next visitor told us his name was Russel Flexer and Tom Newman, the American who came from Florida, spoke with him. It turned out that Dr. Flexer is the founder of the church Tom now leads.

quentine_crispAfter the group sang along with Abba’s The Dancing Queen, Quentin Crisp joined the circle with much banter and jokes. He asked one sitter if he could touch her. She agreed and told everyone that he had very soft hands. Quentin quipped that he was not exactly a workman, which brought a huge laugh. He said that he was not exactly the type of person to get his hands dirty.

Quentin stopped in front of me and asked who I was and where I came from. When I told him the United States, he said that he lived in New York before he passed. (Side note: We were not aware of who Quentin Crisp was until after the séance. He became a gay icon in the 1970s after publication of his memoir, The Naked Civil Servant, which brought attention to his defiant exhibitionism and longstanding refusal to remain in the closet. Every icon has something totally distinctive about their look that no other icon has. Marlon Brando had his leather jacket, and with Quentin, it was his fedoras and many scarves. The Quentin Crisp archives at quentincrisp.com, is dedicated to promoting his philosophy of individuality, self-acceptance, and tolerance.)

Quentin asked if he could touch me and his hand felt warm, soft, normal; just like a person who is alive not dead! When you are touched, it is immediate, directly on your cheek or where they intend to touch you. No fumbling or misses. Try that in a pitch-black room.

Quentin asked, “And who do we have over here?” Chris the circle leader said, “Her husband may be jealous, Tom is over here.” Quentin asked to touch Tom. There was much laughter when Quentin said “Ohhhhh, he has one of those beards.” He went on to greet and touch just about everyone in the circle. His wonderful sense of humor really increased the energy. He remembered people in the circle from other séances and even asked one of them to convey greetings to acquaintances that he hadn’t seen for a while. He then said that he could not stay all night and that he needed to go. Everyone was saying their goodbyes when he asked, “Well Mr. Butler, or should I say Tom. How is your brain, trying to assimilate what is taking place?” Tom replied that he had suspended thinking and was just listening. Quentin then said, “How about you Lisa, or should I say Alisa.” His use of my legal name surprised me. He went on to say that it is such a pretty name, “and yet you call yourself Lisa.” I tried to explain that I use “Lisa” because “Alisa” is so often mispronounced and he quipped back that he could pronounce it. I had to agree that he did so, perfectly. He asked about how my brain was doing with the séance and if it had been worth the five-year wait. I said it was and that I hoped it would not be another five-years, to which he assured me that it would not.

This exchange was very evidential because I did not feel anyone there knew my legal name, and if they had somehow learned my name, they would likely have mispronounced it. The remark about the five year wait to see David was also evidential, as I had told all members of the circle that I had been trying for three years. When I later researched the timing, I realized that at the time of the séance it had actually been a little over five years. Additionally, Quentin’s prediction we would not have to wait another five years came true. The group did another sitting in Florida in early November and we were able to sit in.

Timmy came in again and asked that the red light be turned on so that those who secured David could check the cabinet to see that he was there and bound as they had left him. Tom also checked to see that David was still secured. The light was turned off again and Tim asked whether he should partially materialize or fully materialize. He was encouraged to do what he needed with the energy. Timmy said that he needed a bit more ectoplasm, and urged us to hold on. There was a gurgling sound and the suddenly loud sound of childish laughter, along with a loud thud that startled us all.

Tim asked Tom Newman to step forward in the dark. He did this and told us that David had been levitated out of the cabinet and that he was still bound to the chair. Tim asked Newman to feel the gag while Tim talked. Tom verified that David was gagged and not talking while Tim was talking.

ccosc2009-david_in_cabinetTom Newman returned to his seat while music was played to help David come out of trance. When Chris communicated with David that it was okay, the red light was turned on and we saw that David was ten feet in front of the cabinet, still gagged and bound. His sweater was reversed and the wraps were still in place! All cable wraps needed to be cut before he could be removed from the chair.

The whole experience was beyond words. Members of the Association know that EVP and ITC are beyond many people’s boggle point. This is way beyond that! Tom and I did not go to the séance with skeptical minds but we do believe that we are a couple of very critical thinkers. We stayed awake until two a.m. that morning talking and trying to wrap our brains around what we had experienced. We finally had to say it was what those who spoke to us during the séance said it was; so called “dead people” talking, walking, interacting with us and touching us.

We went to Australia believing in life after death but this séance was life-changing. What an incredible gift to be lucky enough to have the experience. We, like hundreds of others, thank the Circle of the Silver Cord and David Thompson for this important work.

ATransC Books

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your_immortal_self
Paperback and eBook
 Your Immortal Self: Exploring the Mindful Way
by Tom Butler
AA-EVP Publishing, 2016, ISBN: 0-978-0-9727493-9-8The cost of the 508 page book is $24.99 paperback and $14.99 for eBook
You can order the book from Amazon.com

Understanding personal responsibility of mindfulness will lead to your progression. This book explains the evidence which will enable you to turn toward the mindful way. Discussion of the phenomena and the paranormalist community so vital to your progression is included. Understanding your immortality teaches a spirit-centric perspective.

please refer to the dedicated page in EthericStudies.org for more details (ethericstudies.org/immortal_self/)

no_dead_cover_button
Paperback and eBook
 There is No Death and There are No Dead
by Tom and Lisa Butler, AA-EVP Publishing, 2003, ISBN: 0-9727493-0-6
The cost of the 292 page book is $18.00. Amazon.com

When the Butlers assumed leadership of the AA-EVP in 2000, they realized there was a need for a text which they could refer people to as a dependable source of information about EVP and other forms of ITC. This book is the result, and remains today an important introduction to these phenomena.

If you want to know about the history of EVP/ITC, if you would like to read about the experiences people have had with these phenomena and if you would like to learn how to record for the paranormal voices and images, you will want to read this book.

 c2004copeland_im_still_here_small_web  I’m Still Here
by by Martha Pierce Copeland,
AA-EVP Publishing, 2005, ISBN-13: 978-0972749312

Martha Copeland has finished her new book addressing her continuing relationship using EVP with her daughter who is now of the other side. This story is an extremely important one, in that it provides an example for others showing the possibilities available to them. It will show that people no longer need to say goodbye when a loved one passes out of this physical lifetime.

The book includes stories from the “Recording Circle – Bridge to the Afterlife” group of AA-EVP members who record together every other week – no matter where they are in the world. It also provides “how to” instructions that anyone can use to communicate with loved ones who are now in the etheric worlds.

Read the excerpt from I’m Still Here.

You can order copies from Amazon.com

 roadstoeternity

Roads to Eternity
by Sarah Estep
ISBN: 1-931942-23-4, Galde Press, 2005 Amazon.comGalde Press

From the Publisher: EVP, Electronic Voice Phenomena, is real. Spirits can communicate with us from beyond the grave and author Sarah Estep has the proof. She has had more than 20,000 contacts with the spirit world, and has caught EVP on tape recorders, her computer, her TV, and even her telephone. Hear it for yourself on the Roads to Eternity bonus CD included with the book.

If you liked Sarah’s Voices of Eternity, then you will love Roads to Eternity.

 voices_cover_web  Voices of Eternity
By Sarah Estep
Fawcett Gold Medal Book, Ballantine Books, New York, 1988. ISBN 0-449-13424-5.

Available here as a free PDF file download.

If you do not have a PDF reader, you can download a free one:

getacro

Links: References

This is a list of links I find myself looking for when I wish to provide a further reading reference.

Subject Areas

Censorship
Evolution
First Sight Theory
Mind-Brain Duality
Mitchell, Edgar
Shared Death Visions
Nonlocal Mind
Personality Types (Styles)
Psi Functioning
Radin, Dean
Radio-Sweep
Random Event Generator
Reich, Wilhelm
Science-Pseudoscience
Scole Group
Séances
Seth
Sheldrake, Rupert
Spiral Path
Stochastic Resonance
Tarot
Video of Interest
Wikipedia
Quantum Theory

 

Censorship How the UK is Forcing Internet Censorship
—Even of Esoteric Sites
See more hereSpecifically, UK internet service providers will be required to block sites that the government deems unacceptable—including porn, violent material, extremist sites, pro-anorexia and pro-suicide sites, alcohol and smoking, web forums, esoteric material and even software for circumventing the block. Individual users will be able to opt out of the filter, though it will be set “on” by default. – See more here
Evolution ucmp.berkeley.edu/history/lamarck.html

Lamarckism (“transmutation” theory)

Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829) was a French scientist who developed an alternative theory at the beginning of the 19th century (1809). His theory centered on two ideas:

·         the law of use and disuse

·         the law of inheritance of acquired characteristics

Darwin’s Theory Of Evolution  – A Theory in Crisis

Irreducible complexity

See: Sheldrake

First Sight Theory First Sight: A Model and a Theory of PSI
Jim CarpenterAmazon
Mind-Brain Duality Dr. van Lommel has carried out research and surveys of patients who have had near-death experiences. He has documented NDE when there has been no apparent brain function. He has suggested in papers in the highly respected international journal of medical science and practice, The Lancet, that consciousness does not arise from the brain but that the brain acts similarly to a television receiver, processing the consciousness which comes from beyond the brain.

Dr. Sam Parnia, one of two doctors from Southampton General Hospital in England who have been studying so-called near-death experiences (NDEs), told Reuters in an interview.  “The studies are very significant in that we have a group of people with no brain function … who have well-structured, lucid thought processes with reasoning and memory formation at a time when their brains are shown not to function.  We need to do much larger-scale studies, but the possibility is certainly there to suggest that consciousness, or the soul, keeps thinking and reasoning even if a person‘s heart has stopped, he is not breathing and his brain activity is nil”  By Sarah Tippit for Reuters.

An Emerging New Model for Consciousness:
The Consciousness Field Model

Studies in Neuroscience, Consciousness and Spirituality Volume 1, 2011, pp 279-288

See Media Watch article Here

Study: Brains Function in Clinically Dead

by Sarah Tippit, June 29

Near-Death Experience, Consciousness and the Brain

A new concept about the continuity of our consciousness based on recent scientific research on near-death experience in survivors of cardiac arrest.

Pim Van Lommel

Rijnstate Hospital, Arnhem, The Netherlands

From the Conclusion:

“…the almost unavoidable conclusion that at the time of physical death
consciousness will continue to be experienced in another dimension, in an invisible and immaterial world, the phase-space, in which all past, present, and future is enclosed.”

Routledge of the Taylor & Francis Group

World Futures, The Journal of New Paradigm Research, 62: 134–151, 2006
Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN 0260-4027 print / 1556-1844 online
DOI: 10.1080/02604020500412808

Edgar Mitchell Nature’s Mind: the Quantum Hologram

Mitchell founded IONS, a human potential organization encouraged by ATransC.

Abstract

This paper presents a hypothesis for integrating into the scientific framework phenomena of consciousness which frequently have been considered beyond scientific description. Intuition, telepathy, clairvoyance and many similar information phenomena seem to be easily explained by means of the nonlocal quantum hologram. It is further postulated that from the point of view of evolution, quantum nonlocality is the basis from which self-organizing cosmological processes have produced the common phenomenon of perception in living organisms.

Editor: While elements of this hypothesis do describe what is being found via transcommunication, especially nonlocality, it fails to address personality’s apparent existence prior to physical existence. See the ATransC Survival Hypothesis

Nonlocal Mind Nonlocal Mind: Best Updated Empirical and Theoretical Evidence
Personality Types The 4 Different Personality Types: http://bretthard.in/2012/06/The-4-personality-types

Merrill, David W. and Reid, Roger H. Personal Styles and Effective Performance. s.l.: Chilton Book Company, 1981.

sage.edu/centers/asset/ITK_SocialStyles____New_Download.pdf

Katharine Briggs and her daughter Isabel Myers

Type Finder

Another version

Myers Briggs Personality Types

Team Technology

 

Enneagram Teaching, Research, Development & Applications

Psi Functioning Experimenter Effect

The Limits of Experimenter Influence on Psi Test Results: Can Any Be Set?

by Rhea White, Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research (1976)

Dean Radin deanradin.com

Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences and Adjunct Faculty in Psychology at Sonoma State University.

http://deanradin.com/evidence/evidence.htm: Downloadable articles published mainly in the 21st century, with some papers of historical interest and other resources.

Double-Slit Experiment

Research

Radio-Sweep Jim’s (brown) Paranormal Destination: What Are Your Thoughts on Ghost Boxes? Frank’s Box, The Shack Hack, The Ovilus and other Telephones to the Dead
Random Event Generator Random Event Generator Design

Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research

REG Ventor: Psyleron

The Global Consciousness Project

Wilhelm Reich Nonsense About Reich and Orgone on Internet

How the distortions of “orgonite”, “orgone generators”, “orgone pyramids”, “holy hand grenades”, “chembusters”, and other concoctions from the internet madhouse work to destroy Wilhelm Reich’s research legacy, and reveal a profound hatred for the man and his works.

Anti-Constitutional Activities and Abuse of Police Power by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other Federal Agencies

Probably the most significant and blatant example of FDA aggression and anti-Constitutional activity is the case of Dr. Wilhelm Reich. The Reich Legal Case surpassed the Scopes Monkey Trial in legal and historical significance, as it clearly marked the willingness of the US courts to condone the censoring of speech, the burning of books, the unreasonable seizure of property, and the willful ignoring of written documents presented to judges… all for the sake of supporting the medical orthodoxy.

Orgone Energy Accumulator

The following is a presentation of Wilhelm Reich’s (at right) discoveries, observations, and theories about orgone energy in reference to the orgone energy accumulator and it’s uses.

Orgone accumulator devices are experimental; they are not medical devices, and not a substitute for professional medical care. If you have a medical condition, please consult a health care professional.

See also: On Practicing Healthy Skepticism and Being a Pseudoskeptic

Kelley-Radix

Science-Pseudoscience Demarcation problem

“Science and Pseudo-Science,” Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
First published Wed Sep 3, 2008

Séances Walter von Lucadou & Frauke Zahradnik: “Predictions of The Model of Pragmatic Information About RSPK” (archived.parapsych.org/papers/09.pdf).
Seth Jane Roberts brought to us in one of her Seth material. As you may know, Jane Roberts documented the teachings of Seth in numerous books. In Session 635, Nature of Personality Reality (Page page 149, I think), (1980, Bantam Books) Seth discusses the natural aggressive tendencies of humans. He maintains that there is one cardinal commandment that we have need to understand. That is, “Thou shalt not violate.” (Do no harm?) Interpreting his supporting dialogue:

The Cardinal Commandment:

Thou shalt not impose thy will on others.

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/sethquotes/conversations/topics/625 This 9-point summary has been produced by: Maude Cardwell/THE AUSTIN (TX) SETH CENTER [defunct] and Mark M Giese

http://sethquotes.paradisenow.net/seth_excerpts_part_i.html

The Nature of Personal Reality

page 167: Thou shalt not violate

The Content-Source Problem in Modern Mediumship Research by By Paul F. Cunningham, River University, 2012. (http://www.rivier.edu/faculty/pcunningham/Publications/CunninghamJP_Fall-2012-Vol-76-(2)-295-319.pdf)

ABSTRACT: This article examines the methodological issue of whether the content of mediumistic/channeled communications can be used to determine the source of those communications (“content-source problem”) within the context of the trancepossession mediumship of Jane Roberts. The Seth material receives a thorough new examination in light of three approaches to the content-source problem in modern mediumship research that promises to advance the present state of discussion of this issue. A process-oriented investigation of phenomenological processes underlying Roberts’s channeling experience, a hermeneutic examination of Roberts’s channeling behavior, and a rhetorical analysis of the dictated Seth material offer novel analyses of the Seth phenomenon that might shed some light on the case.

From his conclusions: An adequate (adequatio) understanding of the trance-possession mediumship of Jane Roberts grounds itself in the public record of the case and includes Jane Roberts’s lived understanding of her own experience as a trance channel and Seth’s own practical understanding of himself. Seth either is or is not a production of Jane Roberts’s psyche. In either case, we are led to the possibility that human personality may have a greater reality and awareness than is generally supposed

Scole Group The Scole Experiment

The Scole Device

Shared Death Experiences Raymond Moody, On Eterna: eternea.org/SDE_definition.aspx

Moody’s website: lifeafterlife.com

Rupert Sheldrake Hypothesis of Formative Causation

(Morphic Resonance and Morphic Fields)

From the website: “In the hypothesis of formative causation, discussed in detail in my books A NEW SCIENCE OF LIFE and THE PRESENCE OF THE PAST, I propose that memory is inherent in nature. Most of the so-called laws of nature are more like habits.”

An excellent place to begin learning about Sheldrake’s concepts is by reading his Glossary.

An experimental test of the hypothesis of formative causation

— “How Evolution Occurs: Was Lamarck Also Right?” By Robyn A. Lindley, July-September 2011 Edgescience, Published by the Society for Scientific Exploration. See: Acquired Inheritance

Implications of Bioentanglement

Good explanation of Sheldrake’s theory: The Nature of Consciousness: The Physics of Life, a book by Piero Scaruffi

Evidence of Formative Causation? http://www.dailygrail.com/blogs/Jameske/2005/3/Evidence-Formative-Causation

 A Parent’s Life Experiences Can Alter Their Offspring’s Genes
https://futurism.com/a-parents-life-experiences-can-alter-their-offsprings-genes/

Spiral Path The Long and Spiraling Road

by Lorie A. Johnson

“I call these steps The Spiral Path, because eventually I find myself back at a familiar place or activity, but at a higher level of ability….”

Editor: Substitute “any path of personal understanding” for “Pagan” and I think you will see that Lorie’s view has meaning to all of us.

Stochastic Resonance What Is Stochastic Resonance? Definitions, Misconceptions,
Debates, and Its Relevance to Biology
Mark D. McDonnell and Derek AbbottPLOS Computing Biology, Published: May 29, 2009DOI: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1000348Bar-Yam , Yaneer (1997) Dynamics of Complex Systems, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA , ISBN 0-201-55748-7, Reviewed 12/14/2013
Tarot The Paul Foster Case tarot Deck

(Change the numbers at the end of the URL for different cards)

The Pictorial Key to the Tarot

By Arthur Edward Waite

Instructions for the Great Work is embodied in the Tarot. See: B.O.T.A.

Quantum Theory Can Science Prove Reincarnation? Studies Reveal Soul Does Not Die

“Can science prove reincarnation? According to two leading scientists, the human brain is, in fact, a ‘biological computer’ and the ‘consciousness of humans’ is a program run by the quantum computer located inside the brain that even continues to exist after we ‘die.’ As experts explain it; after people die, their soul comes back to the universe, and it does not die’.”

Video of Interest  After-Death Communication – Hello From Heaven! on ABC’s 20/20
Wikipedia Important Commentary on Wikipedia

User: The Tumblemen: Wikipedia, we have a problem, A case study by Rome Viharo, 12-/21/2013. How one editor attempted to balance the Rupert Sheldrake article in Wikipedia, and was eventually banned.

Wikipedia has been hijacked by ‘guerrilla skeptics’!