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Question
Posted by: Adam | 2011-07-26

Psychic abilities - a psychiatric view??

Hi Doc!

What do psychiatrists make of people who claim to have psychic abilities, like clairvoyance, for example?

I''ve always had a theory that people are able to access the " collective unconscious"  (I know it by another old Hebrew name) and thus people who claim to have psychic abilities are actually accessing the " collective unconscious"  - if the space-time continuum is just an illusion of the consciousness and everyone and everything is essentially one, then we all should be able to access the minds in the past, in the present and in the future (since chornological time is also an illusion).

What are your views?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I think they're deluded, frankly. I do accept that some people are far more sensitive than others to reacting to various hints and have better intuition about things that may happen. And one might seek to explain thatin various ways. But I have never come across someone who declares themselves to be "a Clairvoyant" who is convincing or other than some form of scam.
Where were the clairvoyants, for instance, to predict the appalling deeds of the Norwegian mass killer ? He was apparently seething with evil thoughts of mayhem for some time, but nobody predicted those events before they happened.
Of course, there are many people happy to announce AFTER the facts, that they had predicted it beforehand, but that's hardly convincing. If people with the special talents of a clairvoyant can't pick up something like that, how can we believe they can pick up much less dreadful and major thoughts ?
If anyone at all was actually able to reliably access the great minds of the past and the future, wouldn't they be able to solve all of the world's great problems ? If they don't then I assume that they can't. Surely, if they could but choose not to do so, that would be evil of them ?

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2
Our users say:
Posted by: Laurei | 2011-07-27

THis is a very controversial issue for many people. I think that if you believe in something, it can work for you. For instance, I get dreams that forewarn me about events which will occur in the future, mostly based around family and friends and does not involve dreaming about strangers, other countries etc., but mainly about my environment and the people in it. I believe it is a message from the universe and God providing me with guidance and allowing me to prepare for events. 99% of the timne, the dreams come true, either in 6 months or a year. I have dreamt of death, births, etc. and they have occurred each and every one of them.

Reply to Laurei
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011-07-26

I think they're deluded, frankly. I do accept that some people are far more sensitive than others to reacting to various hints and have better intuition about things that may happen. And one might seek to explain thatin various ways. But I have never come across someone who declares themselves to be "a Clairvoyant" who is convincing or other than some form of scam.
Where were the clairvoyants, for instance, to predict the appalling deeds of the Norwegian mass killer ? He was apparently seething with evil thoughts of mayhem for some time, but nobody predicted those events before they happened.
Of course, there are many people happy to announce AFTER the facts, that they had predicted it beforehand, but that's hardly convincing. If people with the special talents of a clairvoyant can't pick up something like that, how can we believe they can pick up much less dreadful and major thoughts ?
If anyone at all was actually able to reliably access the great minds of the past and the future, wouldn't they be able to solve all of the world's great problems ? If they don't then I assume that they can't. Surely, if they could but choose not to do so, that would be evil of them ?

Reply to cybershrink

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