This is the rough draft of a chapter in a book I am writing. I placed it here as a resource for those reading my blog articles that refer to it. You may copy it for informal use but not for profit.
Unpublished work, © 2010 Chuck Gebhardt, MD
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Late in the evening of February 4th, 1974, three heavily armed intruders abducted a nineteen year old college student from the bedroom of her apartment near the University of California at Berkley. They brutally beat her fiancée and fired rifles into the homes of neighbors during the kidnapping. The victim was Patty Hearst, daughter of Randolph Hearst, who was publisher of the San Francisco Examiner and owner of the Hearst newspaper syndicate. Even though the high profile kidnapping of the Hearst heiress had captured the attention of the nation, and had the highest priority of the Berkley Police as well as the FBI, twenty four hours later there were still no leads as to who abducted Patty nor where she was being held.
Being frustrated by the lack of substantial leads to guide them, detectives fromBerkleycontacted a research facility affiliated withStanfordUniversityinMenlo Park,California, called the Stanford Research Institute (SRI). The detectives were aware that SRI had programs involving people purported to have psychic abilities and that they were studying them using scientific protocols. Once contacted, the SRI team drove to the Berkley Police Station to assist.
One member of the SRI team was Pat Price, a retired police commissioner fromBurbank,California. While Pat was police commissioner, he had quietly used what he believed to be his psychic abilities to apprehend criminals. After his retirement, Pat had offered his services to the researchers at SRI and had quickly become an integral part of their work.
When the SRI team arrived at theBerkleypolice headquarters, Pat requested the precinct “mug book” containing the pictures of everyone in the area with a criminal record. Within a few minutes he pointed to the picture of Donald “Cinque” Defreeze and announced: “This guy is the leader of the group; find him and you find Miss Hearst.” Later, he also told the detectives that the car that had been used by the kidnappers had been abandoned and he provided the location of the car. Both of these pieces of information were correct and helped end the crime spree of the American terrorist group that called themselves the Symbionese Liberation Army.
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The psychic research program at SRI was the brain child of two research physicists employed there: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ. ANew Yorkartist, Ingo Swann, had previously helped them to develop a process to intuitively gather distant information while physically isolated from their target location. Ingo had been participating in paranormal experiments inNew Yorklabs and had been invited to visit SRI to explore his psychokinesis abilities by Hal, who had observed Ingo using these skills at a research conference a few months earlier. By April, 1972, they had had enough success with their new remote viewing protocols that they were able to convince NASA officials to fund a pilot project. This launched a series of projects involving not only NASA, but also the US Army, CIA and other government sponsors, which lasted over 18 years. While the vast majority of the data produced remains classified and unavailable, there is enough in the public domain to be enormously helpful for the purposes of this book.
Since Russell and Hal were quite sensitive to the tarnished image of terms like “ESP”, “psychic phenomena” and “paranormal abilities”, they picked the neutral name “remote viewing” for their extra-sensory data gathering process. They developed all of their protocols with the most stringent controls they could devise, anticipating that their findings would come under harsh scrutiny, especially from scientific critics. They succeeded in this aim for achieving air tight controls admirably. Even their strongest critics have been forced to conclude, once they have carefully reviewed the data and the protocols, that the SRI protocol designs meet even the most rigid standards for scientific research.
Briefly, their usual procedure involves dividing into two teams, a viewing team that stays in a specially constructed room that is effectively shielded from all outside sources of information, and a targeting team that goes out to view the target. The remote viewer then attempts to gather accurate impressions about the location where the target team is visiting at the exact time of the visit. The viewing team has no idea of what the outgoing team will select as their target, nor do they have any physical means of obtaining this information. The target team typically selects the target location by a random process only after they have left the remote viewing lab and are well on their way in the field. Of the many reports available, one highly suggestive examples is provided here.
The first drawing to be presented was produced by Pat Price at the request of the CIA in the fall of 1974 (These pictures were declassified and obtained in response to a Freedom of Information Act request in 1995). The CIA contact had supplied the SRI team with the latitude and longitude coordinates of a “Soviet site of great interest to the analysts.” Previously, both Ingo Swann and Pat Price had demonstrated the ability to describe remote locations when supplied only with the geographic coordinates of latitude and longitude for their remote viewing target. With only these coordinates written on a slip of paper to guide their efforts, Russell Targ and Pat Price entered the highly shielded remote viewing room to gather impressions of the site. Pat Price was the viewer. There were no maps and, as usual, neither Russell nor Pat had any idea why the CIA analysts were interested in this site. As Pat began his viewing procedure, he saw himself lying on the ground and looking up at a huge structure rolling back and forth above him. The drawings in Figure 1 provide both the CIA artist’s drawing, based on spy satellite photos, and Pat’s drawing of the gantry structure he saw during this remote viewing session.
Above right is Pat Price’s drawing of his psychic impressions of a gantry crane at the secret Soviet research and development site at Semipalatinsk, showing remarkable similarity to a later CIA drawing based on satellite photography shown at left. Note, for example, that both cranes have eight wheels.
Pat went on to describe many other features of the site, but Pat’s depiction of the gantry mechanism is the important concern here. Note that Pat was thousands of miles from the Russian target at the time the drawing was made and he had no other source of the target information, as he sat in the electromagnetically shielded viewing room, other than the images he received in his mind. Yet, the incredible accuracy of his depiction of the gantry is undeniable. Based on results like these, the CIA and other U.S. Government agencies provided funding for this program for over two decades.
While this example is one of the best results obtained by the SRI project, there were a very large number of examples of this quality. Nor was the ability to remote view limited to a few prodigies of remote viewing like Pat Price and Joseph McMoneagle. The SRI team demonstrated the ability to select individuals with no known aptitude for remote viewing, train them in the use of technique, and obtain results from these subjects that were obviously not due to mere chance or coincidence.
The story that leads off this chapter, the kidnapping of Patty Hearst and how Pat Price helped locate her abductors, like the two stories of the near death experiences, includes events so incredibly unlikely to occur by chance that the only reasonable conclusion is that they are not lucky guesses. Pat’s actions in selecting the gang leader, Donald Defreeze, from a mug book and his precise pinpointing of the location of the car used by the kidnappers cannot be reasonably be ascribed to chance.
The drawing that I included by Pat Price also cannot be ascribed to just chance similarities. I chose it purposefully to make this point quite clear. This is information demonstrating remarkable human abilities. There are many others like it that are hard to explain unless these abilities truly do exist
Both the Hearst kidnapping story and incredibly accurate remote viewing drawings also demonstrates another key point. These purported psychic abilities are potentially testable and capable of being objectively studied. As the detectives followed up on Pat Price’s information looking for Patti Hearst, they were, in effect, objectively testing his intuitive insights and they confirmed them to be completely accurate. When Pat’s drawing was compared to the satellite picture when it became available, his ability to non-physically attain this information was also being tested objectively and shown to be remarkably accurate. While Pat’s psychological process of gathering this information is almost inaccessible to objective study techniques, the results are not inaccessible and may be reliably verified. The door is thus open to using the highly reliable methods of science to study these abilities.
The example presented from the SRI remote viewing project is not all that unusual. It is one of the best I have found in my review of this research topic, but it is a fair representation of frequently demonstrated abilities. Other research labs have also been successful in replicating what the SRI researchers have found. For instance, the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research lab (know as PEAR), associated with PrincetonUniversityin New Jersey, further refined the protocols from SRI, especially the statistical evaluation techniques. They developed standardized evaluation questionnaires to facilitate a precise comparison of the target team’s impressions of the target with the remote viewer’s impressions. This allowed an even more refined statistical analysis that further supported the conclusions of the SRI group that there was indeed non-physical transfer of information from the randomly selected targets to the isolated remote viewers.
The new protocols also improved the search for remote viewing abilities in average subjects who had not been selected due to their known paranormal abilities. As a result, remote viewing ability was confirmed to be present in a much larger number of unselected remote viewing subjects than had been studied at SRI. The PEAR studies not only confirmed the existence of the ability of certain research subjects to non-physically access information about distant target locations, they also showed that these skills were present in at least rudimentary levels in virtually everyone tested.
The scientists whose research I have presented here were partly chosen because of their exemplary research records, typically in mainstream scientific fields prior to engaging studying these anomalies. It should not be surprising, then, that the studies discussed in this chapter also meet the highest scientific standards. The viewers were carefully isolated from any possible physical access to the target sites. The selections of targets were randomized. The judges that evaluated the experimental data were properly blinded. A large number of studies have provided consistent results over many years and important studies have been extensively replicated. If you accept any scientific research as valid, you must accept this work; the highest standards are met or exceeded in the data I have reported here. These research results are as reliable as we find anywhere.
We have seen anecdotal reports of psychic abilities which show that information is being transferred in a fashion that clearly transcends physically based processes. We have also briefly reviewed the extensive SRI and PEAR databases that show numerous reports with statistically significant results. Taken as a group, these research studies provide the same conclusions as our anecdotal evidence. Human research subjects are capable of gathering information from distant locations about which they have no normal physical means of acquiring it. This is not a characteristic of just a few highly skilled remote viewers; it is part of what it is to be human.
 R. Targ, Limitless Mind (Novato,CA:New World Library, 2004): 29-32
 R. Targ and J. Katra, Miracles Of Mind (Novato, CA: New World Library, 1998): 45-51
 J. McMoneagle, Mind Trek: 184-5
J. McMoneagle, Remote Viewing Secrets (Charlottesville,VA:Hampton Roads, 2000): 46-7
R. Targ and J. Katra, Miracles Of Mind: 68-72
 R. Jahn and B. Dunne, Margins Of Reality (Orlando, FL: Harcourt Brace, 1987): 149-91