The psychologist Alejandro Parra received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees from the Universidad Abierta Interamericana (www.vaneduc.edu.ar/uai), where he is now a teacher and associated researcher. He received his PhD in psychology from the Universidad de Ciencias Empresariales y Sociales (www.uces.edu.ar). His doctoral dissertation, which was conducted under the auspices of Dr. David Maldavsky (his major advisor) and three other committee members (Dr. H. Losinno, Dr. A. Cayssials, and Dr. B. Nante) was based on the theme, Percepciones Imposibles: Alucinaciones y otras experiencias anómalas [Impossible Perceptions: Hallucinations and Other Anomalous Experiences]. He is licensed in Buenos Aires, Argentina (Mat. # 32.358), where he serves as a psychotherapist in general clinical psychological practice in the Clinical Area of the Institute of Paranormal Psychology. He conducts therapy groups and uses an historical approach in his continued research into parapsychology, dreamwork, and mediumship. In a counseling setting he also conducts workshops with psychics and mediums on their paranormal/spiritual experiences. His clinical research is based on cognitive-experiential and humanistic/Rogerian-oriented approaches with groups of people who have had paranormal experiences and dreams.
As an Associate Professor, Parra teaches three courses at the Faculty of Psychology of the Universidad Abierta Interamericana: Teorías y Sistemas Psicológicos [Psychological Theories and Systems], Estadística Aplicada a la Psicología [Applied Statistics in Psychology], and Psicoterapía [Psychotherapy]. He is also conducting an accredited free course: Psicología Paranormal: Cómo orientar a personas con experiencias paranormales [Paranormal Psychology: How to Counsel People who have had Paranormal Experiences] during the first semester at the Universidad Abierta Interamericana in Buenos Aires.
Parra is a full member and International Liaison of the Parapsychology Association; an International Affiliate and International Liaison of the Parapsychology Foundation; and an associated member of the Society for Scientific Exploration for Argentina. He is also a member and adherent of a dozen other institutes of parapsychology in Europe and such Latin American countries as Brazil, Chile and Mexico.
Alejandro Parra has attended conventions, symposia and conferences on psychology, psychotherapy and parapsychology in a dozen cities such as Santiago (Chile), Halifax (Canada), Edinburgh (Scotland), Stockholm (Sweden), Freiburg (Germany), Curitiba, Recife, and São Paulo (Brazil), Durham, New York, and San Diego (US). Parra has also given invited talks on parapsychology and workshops on dreamwork in many institutes and centers such as Stichting Het Johan Borgmanfonds (Amsterdam), Fondazione Biblioteca Bozzano de Boni (Bologna), Koestler Parapsychology Unit (Edinburgh), Sociedad Española de Parapsicología (Madrid), Facultad Libre de Altos Estudios Paracientíficos (Barcelona), Institut Métapsychique International (Paris), BILYAY Foundation (Istanbul), and Österreichische Gesellschaft für Parapsychologie (Vienna), as well as at faculties of psychology at the universities of Barcelona and Granada (Spain), at the Facultades Integradas “Espírita” of Curitiba (Brazil), and the universities of Lima, Alas Peruanas and Inca Garcilazo (Peru). As a lecturer, he has presented hundreds of talks on psychology, parapsychology and clinical psychology in Argentina.
Parra has authored a number of books, including Historia de la parapsicología en la Argentina [History of Parapsychology in Argentina](Author, 1990; see review), Fenómenos paranormales [Paranormal Phenomena] (Kier, 2003; see review), Sueños: Como interpretar sus mensajes [Dreams: How to Understand their Messages] (Kier, 2005; see review), Psicología de las experiencias paranormales [Psychology of Paranormal Experiences] (Akadia, 2006; see German review); El mundo oculto de los sueños [The Hidden World of Dreams] (Kier, 2009; see review); and the forthcoming books Poderes de la mente [Powers of the Mind] (Corona Borealis, 2010) and ¿Qué es … la sensibilidad psíquica? [What is … Psychic Sensibility] (Deva´s, 2010).
He also edited three Proceedings of the Encuentros Psi [Psi Encounters] on such topics as Actas del Primer Encuentro Psi 1994: Nuevas dimensiones en parapsicología [Proceedings of the First Psi Encounter: New Dimensions in Parapsychology] (Instituto de Psicología Paranormal, 1994); Actas del Segundo Encuentro Psi 1996 [Proceedings of the Second Psi Encounter] (Instituto de Psicología Paranormal, 1996); and Actas del Tercer Encuentro Psi 1998: Conciencia y psi como fronteras de exploración científica. [Proceedings of the Third Psi Encounter: Consciousness and Psi as Frontiers of Scientific Exploration] (Instituto de Psicología Paranormal, 1998). With Juan Manuel Corbetta, he co-edited the e-book Imágenes de lo oculto [Images of the Occult], which was published by the Institute of Paranormal Psychology.
In addition, Parra has published a number of articles in peer-reviewed journals such as Revista Argentina de Psicología Paranormal, Anuario Brasileiro de Parapsicología, Ciencias del Espíritu, and Psi Comunicación (in Spanish); Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, Australian Journal of Parapsychology, International Journal of Parapsychology, Psypioneer, The Paranormal Review, Journal of Parapsychology, and Journal of American Society for Psychical Research (in English); and Luce e Ombra, Quaderni di Parapsicologia, and Grenzgebiete der Wissenschaft (in Italian and German, respectively).
He has also published in several non-parapsychological journals, notably the Journal of Mental Imagery and Imagination, Cognition and Personality. Others include Revista Argentina de Clínica Psicológica, Revista de Investigación en Psicología, Límite: Revista de Filosofía y Psicología, Revista Latinoamericana de Psicología, Subjetividad y Procesos Cognitivos, Revista Internacional de Psicología, Persona, Revista Psico-USF, Revista Liberabit, Actualidad Psicológica, Acta Psiquiátrica y Psicológica de América Latina, Alcmeón: Revista Argentina de Clínica Neuropsiquiátrica, Revista Iberoamericana de Diagnóstico y Evaluación Psicológica, Revista Interamericana de Psicología, Revista de Neuro-Psiquiatría, Todo es Historia, and El Otro: Revista de Psicoanálisis (all in Spanish). In addition, Parra has worked for many years as a journalist for such paranormal magazines as Año/Cero, Más Allá and Enigmas (Spain), as well as Sexto Sentido (Brazil).
Institute of Paranormal Psychology (IPP) AP´s Biographies on-line Journal Articles (English abstracts) AP Books´s Book Reviews English Article: Parapsychology in Argentina List of English´s articles
Frankly, I doubt if I would possess the cool and detached attitude necessary for an historian confronted with the task to describe a aspect of Argentine parapsychology which has become at least for the last thirty years a part of my own personal history. However, this interest has estimulated communications between Argentines and foreign parapsychologists. To appreciate more thoroughly the present situation, I will classify some sources of access to the information in the field, with the hope this would help to understand it more clearly.
I do not remember any time in my life in which mystery, the unconventional, the marginal to scientific knowledge was not of interest to me. I started to get into parapsychology in the mid 1980s. After having had an experience with a ouija board when I was 14 years old, I started taking courses and attending popular conferences. In those years the main pioneers of the field had already died or they were partially retired, parapsychology was not included in any university program, and after the military dictatorship in Argentina (1976-1983), many parapsychology centers appeared and began to offer courses, lectures, and programs to develop “psi powers”. To learn parapsychology we had to read by yourself, and I grew up in a very confusing social environment in terms of parapsychology is and what is not.
In the past, Argentina made great progress in parapsychology, placing itself –according John Beloff– as the second country in the Americas, after USA, with antecedents in experimental psychical research. The pioneers were the ones contributed a great number of experimental research and theoretical essays, quoted frequently by American and European parapsychologists in their articles and books. The early interest surged –in the academic level– about thirties with exploratory studies of the physiological conditions of mediums and psychics. The parapsychology in Argentina could be divided in four chronological phases, (1) Spiritist (or Spiritualist) since 1870 (up to dated); (2) Mesmerism (inserted in Spiritualism practices) between 1896 to 1924; (3) the early psychical research, which was called “metapsychics” in many Latin-american countries, between 1924 to 1953; and (4) Rhinean parapsychology. In this paper, these last stage was divided in three phases: (a) Private institutionalization, (b) Pseudo-parapsychology, and (c) the Institute of Paranormal Psychology.
During the Rhinean stage, a variety of institutes under Spiritism and non-spiritualis approach attempted to replicate and extend Rhine’s experiments. We identified several individuals who led this initiative; they include Orlando Canavesio (1915‑1957), a psychiatrist who studied the EEG correlates of ESP performance with strong European imprint; José Fernández (1893‑1967) an engineer who applied probability theory to ESP research; J. R. Musso (1917‑1989) an economist and psychologist who conducted sheep/goat tests with school children and coauthored a highly regarded free‑response ESP test; Enrique Novillo‑Paulí (1919‑1989) a Jesuit priest who studied PK influence on plants; and the best known contemporary Argentine parapsychologist Naum Kreiman (1921-2003) who have been instrumental in maintaining the publication of Cuadernos de Parapsicologia and who have conducted a variety of ESP experiments studying such variables as memory, emotion, and feedback.
In 1970, the Jesuit priest Enrique Novillo Paulí obtained a fellowship from the Organization of American States to participate in the Foundation for Research on the Nature of Man (FRNM, now Rhine Research Center) in Durham, where he stayed for two years under the direction of J.B.Rhine and his research team to participate in some parapsychological research. Some years after, Novillo Pauli reported a bio-PK experiments on the growth of plants, using unselected persons of both sexes as subjects. Novillo Paulí participated in three International Conferences of Parapsychology,organized by the Parapsychology Foundation where he presented a paper on Parapsychology and Education. He conducted 33 trials where Novillo Pauli examined that under conditions of gender competition between the bith sexes (teenager were his subjects) he found a magnitude of the PK effect. Novillo Pauli died in 1989, and his Laboratory of Parapsychology which was part of the Universidad del Salvador (a private university owned by Jesuit priests) was completely dismantled by unknown reasons and his valuable psi library was donated to a local church.
Naum Kreiman and his wife Dora Ivnisky published the quaterly Cuadernos de Parapsicología now discontinued. The work of Kreiman was the experimental research in ESP under various psychological variables and with emphasis on the statistical evaluation. In his Curso de Parapsicologia, Argentinean parapsychologist Naum Kreiman presented an overview of psi phenomena. The book reads like a series of lessons or lectures, many of which have been used as teaching material at the parapsychology Institute directed by himself. The book also includes several chapters about the practical application of psi, and its relationship to yoga. Naum Kreiman, together with his wife Dora Ivnisky, performed numerous studies to observe if groups of subjects or selected individuals could eventually obtain significant numbers of guesses in tests of ESP and PK, some of them without significative results. The start of Kreiman in parapsychology –like a majority of his fellows began in the spiritualist community in the forties. He also was the editor of the La Idea [The Idea], a journal of the Confederacion Espiritista Argentina. At seventies, Kreiman created their own center, separated from Spiritualism circles. In 1963 he published Cuadernos de Parapsicologia in which they translated reports by some American and European parapsychologists.
Kreiman worked as a technician biostatistics and he teached mathematics in many centers. In 1975, he became director of the Argentine Institute of Parapsychology (founded by J.Ricardo Musso in the fifties). From 1968 until his death (2004) he published more than fifty articles. It is noteworth he has involved in the skeptical movement thanks to his relation with many former members of the Argentine Institute for Parapsychology who due to many reasons, were splitted from the Institute and became to be newest members of the CSICOP, the US skeptic leader center (something like a “Blackmore effect”) and they created the Argentine Center for Research and Refutation of Pseudoscience (in Spanish CAIRP, now inactive). The Argentine skeptical movement is a part of the history which could be read in elsewhere.
Other activities were addressed the paranormal topics to more popular levels, but limited to bring general information and vague theoretical developments in this field and satisfying people interested in amazing findings. One of them was the Jornadas Argentinas de Parapsicología held by Instituto Argentino de Parapsicología conducted by Julio Di Liscia in 1980 where the IAP members introduced theorical and experimental projects, but later a great number of events to general public, such as the Primer Congreso Argentino de Parapsicología in 1981, were organized by Grupo Universitario de Estudios e Investigaciones en Parapsicología (GUEIP) attended by academics and large public crowd. During such event an agreement was signed, the Documento de Buenos Aires, in which an attempt was made to unify conflicting concepts in parapsychology. However, a number of members represented by GUEIP, such as Jesuit priests Oscar Gonzalez Quevedo (Brasil) and Enrique Novillo Pauli (Argentina) and others (J. Ricardo Musso refused to sign), had had strong disagreements among them. It produced a break to all subsequent projects. Since then many of their members supported and sympathize with tarot readers and other non- or pseudo-parapsychological practices under the name “parapsychology” giving certificates as parapsychologists to many incompetent or insane people. Just a handful of activities can be mentioned as valuables during this period, such as Primer Encuentro de Parapsicología in 1987 sponsored by the Enrique Novillo Paulí’s Institute of Parapsychology of the Universidad del Salvador, which was the one of the last psi events within the academic context.
During the eighties and much of the nineties, Argentine parapsychology was confronted by two causes: First, the popularization of parapsychology forced us to face with rigor the procedure to inform not only the scientific scope but also the social influences of this subject. The media exemplified the disinformation, which caused the rise of healers, seers, tarot readers, quacks, pseudo-psychics which invoke for themselves the title of “parapsychologist”. Secondly, the Argentine elite parapsychologists who worked from the scientific viewpoint were separated due irrational interrelationship conflicts, such as Novillo Pauli vs.Musso, Musso vs. Kreiman and Kreiman vs. Novillo Pauli.
The proliferation of popular or “pop-parapsychology” was part of the a cultural interest that revealed the hope of public on the possible therapeutic aspects that parapsychology may offer. This wrong concept was often promoted by single individuals or by small groups sometimes supported by strong publicity. Unfortunately, the term “parapsychology” was indiscriminately abused so there was a massive popularization of various divination arts, therapeutic alternative systems, pseudo-religious groups, occult literature, and “pop-parapsychology” as part of it. Obviously, in such an environment it was very difficult to attract a scientists; by the way, the skeptical movement gained power and pumped the image of the “war between science and reason vs. danger of pseudosciences, such as psychoanalysis, astrology and parapsychology” –sustained by the well-known Argentine philosopher Mario Bunge. It is a reason why university authorities opposed, sometimes energetically, to include this subject as part of the curricula. As a consequence, the vicious circle closes up or “the snake bites its tail”: no resources are generated in the formation of scholars to cover the scientific deficit, the interest in parapsychology decreases during this period, and it discourage those who found disinformation in a field whose grants were practically inexistent.
The Institute of Paranormal Psychology (IPP) was established in 1994 as an educational center dedicated to the scientific study of paranormal/anomalous events and experience and the experimental research. The IPP´s work is carried out almost exclusively in the Buenos Aires area. Its focus is now on experimental, clinical and empirical research, plus the collection and publication of case reports dealing with paranormal/anomalous experiences. As a non-profit research and educational institute (Res. # 1167/04) and Government of Buenos Aires (Res. # 16372/08). The IPP has been recognized as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) since 2005. We tell this part of the history discussing the main activity of our Institute in ten sections which are our “hard work” during the last period: Educational Approaches, Publications, Library Resources & Archives, Workshops and Seminars, Clinical Approach of Psychics Experiences, Experimental research, Independent Psi-Researchers, Undergraduate Thesis on Psi-Related Topics, Books and Publishing Projects, Macro-PK Research and Spontaneous PK research.
1. Educational Approach
From an educational viewpoint, the IPP teaches a basic program in parapsychology, aimed at the general public and scholars, constituting a comprehensive introduction to the field. Enrollment is limited, and classes are small to permit individual attention. The controversies that surround psi research and the implications of its findings for science and society are also prominent topics in these programs. The IPP is mainly supported by students’ fees. There also was a lot of “study groups” concentrating on different topics in the field −historical, educational, clinical, theoretical, and experimental/methodological conducted by Alejandro Parra at the IPP.
Currently, the IPP has twelve active members, most of them psychologists, Juan Carlos Argibay, Gustavo Cía, Daniel Gómez Montanelli, Juan Corbetta, Marcelo Eremián, and Alejandro Parra, and with them Juan Gimeno, Sergio Matteucci, Fabiana Savall, Jorge Brandan, Jorge Villanueva, and Irma Caputo. Just four of them had been Parapsychological Association members (J.R. Musso and Novillo Pauli in the past): Cia, Corbetta, Gómez Montanelli and Parra in the last period (now just two). Alejandro Parra was the third Spanish-speaking President of the PA during the period 2011-2013 (after Carlos Alvarado and Etzel Cardeña) and first in Argentina. He also is Liaison of the Parapsychology Foundation since 2001. IPP members have obtained a dozen grants from the Fundação Bial in Portugal, between the years of 1998 and 2010, which have allowed them to conduct studies of ESP in the ganzfeld (two of them were meta-analized by Storm et al. and Johann Baptista & Max Derakhshani), psychometry research (“token object” effect), psychomantheum, and psychological and personality measures of anomalous/paranormal experiences.
Since 1993 up to today, we organize courses, seminars, panels, and symposiums on parapsychology and related topics with more than three hundred attendees (approx. ten to twenty per year). Conferences and symposia on topics such as Kirlian effect, Transpersonal Psychology, Psychotronic, Dreamwork groups (Psychologists Zdenek Rejdak from Czech Republic and Stanley Krippner from US visited us many times), and a number of public lectures on parapsychology.
Between 1990 and 2004, the IPP published fifty-four issues of a peer-reviewed quarterly journal, the Revista Argentina de Psicología Paranormal [Argentine Journal of Paranormal Psychology]. The journal’s impact on many young parapsychologists in several Spanish-speaking countries was really impressive. Since 1990 up to 2000 the RAPP was quaterly, but 2000 to 2004 the RAPP become semestral. It was distributed to about two hundred universities, public libraries, institutes and centers of psychology in Argentina and internationally. RAPP was our Argentine “embassador”, which had a political exchanges with over fifty parapsychological journals around the world. Experimental research, theoretical papers, historical and philosophical essays, book reviews, and activities were published. Some of them collaborate disinterestedly with the RAPP, among others, the valuable contribution of Jorge Villanueva, a distinguished writer and reader who is our book reviewer and English translator.
In fact, until then, Argentina parapsychology was little known to many outside our country, except the contributions of Canavesio (in 1955), Musso and Novillo Pauli in the 60s and 70s. The RAPP began as a publication distributed among students of our courses of parapsychology and a few interested subscribers in Argentina, mainly in Buenos Aires. However, perseverance allowed us to survive and joined, albeit slowly, adherents in Argentina and Latin American readers. Most of subscribers were psychologists and other social scientists as well as engineers, architects, or language teachers. Wisely, always we maintained distance and rejection experienced by those who sought in our journal “amazing” parapsychological findings, conspiracism, psychic powers, mystical or spiritual revelations, and contacts with extraterrestrial. There were also, in return for manipulating and diverting its editorship, advertising offers and proposals to improve the printing quality.
RAPP also published literature reviews and historical items, which included biographies of psychics and parapsychologists, technical and conceptual notes where many authors dealt methodological problems, experimental and empirical research, and studies on various topics, theoretical and philosophical perspectives, bibliographical essays. It included a section of book reviews and a compilation of the titles of the articles in the leading journals of parapsychological research. We published 86 book reviews and 33 Letters to the Editor in the Correspondence section.
We also initiated a series of monographic issues, such as the life and work of the pioneer J. Ricardo Musso. Later, coordinated by Carlos S. Alvarado, we published a debate on the situation of parapsychology in Latin America with the participation of twelve parapsychologists. Other less specific, were a review of the work of six of the leading laboratories of parapsychology in the world, a special issue on research Ganzfeld, PK and the memory of past lives (cited by the skeptic Carl Sagan as matters of interest inquiry that deserve further investigation), and a special edition where five parapsychologists reviewed the situation of parapsychology in the 90s.
However, the RAPP was discontinued for financial reasons in 2004. Subsequently, in 2006, the IPP re-inaugurated a new low-cost on-line publication, the E-Bulletin Psi, of which thirty issues have been published to-date (see http://www.alipsi.com.ar/publicaciones_ipp.asp) including 152 articles published by 93 authors. Although E-Bulletin Psi emerged to do known many studies conducted at the Institute of Psychology Paranormal, as well as translations and books review, we started step-by-step to receive many unpublished papers and at the same time, geometrically increased number of free-of-charge adherents (or subscribers, but not in a financial sense) to reach about 12,000 readers in 2009. Now although the number has decreased, however these contributions has improved qualitatively and quantitatively.
3. Library Resources & Archives
The IPP’s main source of pride is its library of parapsychology, which contains around 4500 books, 12,000 issues of parapsychological journals and related topics in English and non-English language (including forteen languages) and popular magazines, and thousands of files of articles in non-parapsychological journals in the scientific mainstream. The IPP maintains SIPsi v.3.0, which is a computerized bibliographic database on parapsychology and related consciousness disciplines. The main aim of the SIPsi v.3.0 is to include a bibliographic citation and/or abstract of all books or articles (scholarly or popular), theses, chapters, conference proceedings papers, or separate reports or monographs on parapsychology or related consciousness studies. The “ALIPsi Bibliographical Guides” can be downloaded from the web, and they are annually uptodated.
It is the most important collection of its kind in Argentina and even in Latin America. The IPP also hosts about five thousand hours of VHS format and DVDs on parapsychological and psi-related topics. In its origin, the archives were part of The Agencia Latinoamericana de Información Psi (ALIPsi) which is now an internet-based database of parapsychology references and on-line information related to the Spanish-speaking literature (www.alipsi.com.ar). The data reside in a computer, because ALIPsi covers the bulk of parapsychology articles in Spanish-language journals from 1900 to-date. It also offers advisory service in bibliographical investigations to undergraduate students and journalists. In fact, we were one of the first web site on internet since 1997 (when the web sites just started), for the which more than 1.5M of visits had received according our web counter up to 2014.
4. Workshops and Seminars
The IPP has a “record” number in the organizing conventions and meetings of researchers and experts along many years, bringing together researchers from many countries, such as Zdenek Rejdak from Praha, Andrei Lee from Moscow, Stanley Krippner from US, Wim Kramer from Netherlads, Erlendur Haraldsson from Iceland, Yoichiro Sako (SONY´s ESPER Lab) from Japan, and among many others.
In fact, the Institute edited three Proceedings of the “Encuentros Psi” such as Proceedings of the First Psi Encounter (1994); Proceedings of the Second Psi Encounter (1996); and Proceedings of the Third Psi Encounter (1998). The First Encounter Psi 1994: New Dimensions in Parapsychology was held in Buenos Aires (November 5, 1994), hosted by Alejandro Parra and Jorge Villanueva, planned to cover several aspects about parapsychological research in Argentina and the situation of parapsychology around the world. The second was also held in Buenos Aires (November 15-17th, 1996). Although this was the Segundo Encuentro Psi, IPP’s effort is also reflected in the expansion of current efforts to unite not only the Latin Americans who conduct parapsychology, but also those who work in Portugal and in Spain. Probably the most important of these efforts was the creation of the Asociación Iberoamericana de Parapsicologia (now declined), a new organization modeled after the Parapsychological Association. The Segundo Encuentro Psi included 23 presentations, from nine countries Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Panama, Portugal, Puerto Rico and Spain. The Third Parapsychology Conference organized by Instituto de Psicologia Paranormal, which took also place in Buenos Aires, Argentina (November 13-15, 1998) a large variety of areas in parapsychology were covered, characterized by a notorious dominance of theoretical papers over research‑based work the latter accounting for only 25% of presented work in the first conference (1994) and 30% in the second (1996). In this Psi Encounter, 37 people from 6 different countries (Argentina, Brazil, Japan, Portugal, Puerto Rico, and the USA) contributed a total of 16 papers and took part in roundtable discussions which covered eight additional topics. Thirty‑seven percent of the papers presented were research‑based, suggesting a growing tendency toward research work, in comparison to the presentations from the two previous encounters.
With a brief period, the IPP was not involved in social activitives, partially due to the economical crisis of 2001 that produced a financial crash in Argentina. However, from November 8 to 20th, 2006, the Roca Museum –National Institute for History Research, was the stage for Images of the Occult, a photographic exhibition about spiritualism, which brought together professionals –two of them from outside Argentina– who, for two weeks, attended a number of conferences and panels such as psychic/spiritist practices, psychomanteum, ITC, apparitional experiences, and mediumship, survival and super-psi discussion. These were presented and discussed by historical and cultural researchers, anthropologists, physicians, psychologists, and other paranormalists and open-minded skeptics who were invited as speakers. The exhibition was also supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires. With Juan Manuel Corbetta, who is psychologist, we co-edited the e-book Imágenes de lo oculto an free-of-charge e-book published by the IPP. The paranormal photographic exhibition was also supported by Ministry of Culture of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, The Latinoamerican Psi Information Agency ALIPsi –a virtual area of the IPP (www.alipsi.com.ar), and the oldest Kardecian spiritist society named La Fraternidad, established in 1880. Approximatly 2,600 visitors attended along two weeks, some of them also filled a “Book Visitor”. As the Museum is an institution supported by the Argentine Government, the entry was free of charge and open to all. Many Argentine and international press agencies, TV and radio programs, and three newspapers announced the exhibition.
In 2010, the Roca Museum was again the stage for an exhibition of objects and books of the Kardecian-oriented spiritualism movement, in Argentina since 1874, called “The Spiritism in the Voice of the Spiritualists” where three IPP members, Juan Gimeno, Juan Corbetta and Fabiana Savall (she was curator of the exhibition) authored Cuando Hablan los Espíritus which brought a number of spiritist photographies, and collecting many pieces for sèances and old and rare books taken from a dozen of Spiritualism societies.
Since then, a new series of panels called “Magistral Rountable” held each year under the Museo Roca forum and the Institute, the first one “Extraordinary Visions” (2009) involved three speakers, the Argentine psychic Leonor Hernández the Uruguayan psychic Marcelo Acquistapace and psychologist Wim Kramer from Netherlands, who discussed many cases where psychics have been involved in many police cases related to kidnappings, murders, and missing persons. The second one, “Other Lives” (2010) involved three speakers, the Argentine anthropologist Pablo Wright, the author Leonor Calvera and the Iceland psychologist Erlendur Haraldsson, who discussed the reincarnation-types cases from different viewpoint with enphasis on anomalous experiences. The third one, “Touched by God” (2011) involved three speakers, the anthropologists Gustavo Ludueña and Nicolas Viotti together with Patricia Arca Mena, who discussed the anthropological and neuroscientist viewpoint of the mystical and religious experience. The fourth one, “The Devil´s Scourge” (2012) involved three speakers, the anthropologists Miguel Algranti, Sociologist Maximiliano Korstanje and Psychiatrist Javier Fabrissin, who discussed the case of possessions and exorcisms and mental disorder and “negative” spiritual experiences. The fifth one “Ecology of Ecstasy” (2013) involved three speakers, the anthropologists Anatilde Ydoyaga Molina and César Ceriani Cernadas, and psychiatrist Néstor Berlanda who discussed folk-medicine, shamanism in America. The Sixth one “Intangibles Visitors” (2014) involved three speakers the psychoanalist Mauro Vallejo, the author Soledad Quereilhac and the medium Sebastian Lia, who discussed apparitional experiences and mediumship. The last one was (seventh) “Channelers from Beyond” (2015), involved three speakers psychologist Juan Manuel Corbetta, psychiatrist Sabino Antonio Luna, and Brazilian medium Florencio R. Anton Neto, who discussed mediumistic art, creativity and mental health with a seance-demonstration of art. Each year more than one hundred attendees the rountables with A&Q between speakers and people.
5. Clinical Approach of Psychics Experiences
During the 90s, the IPP appointed Daniel Gómez Montanelli, a clinical psychologist, to provide, as part of his job, information and some counseling to people who called the Institute for help. In 1998, Gómez Montanelli received a grant from the Bial Foundation to carry out a research project aimed at recording people’s reactions to disturbing psi experiences and to explore their associated emotional and intellectual processing. Parra and Corbetta continued the work in the 2010, and they served as psychotherapists in counseling and clinical area of the Institute of Paranormal Psychology up to date. The clinical counseling and research was based on cognitive-experiential and Humanistic/Rogerian-oriented approach with groups of people who have had paranormal experiences and paranormal dreams.
Two investigations were conducted to record reactions to disturbing psi experiences and to explore their emotional and intellectual processing. In the first study, thirty-two subjects participated in weekly group sessions involving humanistic group therapy. The activity involved three stages: (a) emotional support, (b) intellectual and emotional processing, and (c) group-closing and interpretation. Over three-quarters of the sample reported fear —in different forms— to be the predominant emotion; wonder, perplexity, well-being and anxiety were also reported. Scores on a measure of disturbance decreased as a consequence of the group activity (mean pre-score = 4.85, mean post-score = 1.70), which is consistent with emotional processing and integration. Group members felt able to learn to handle their own capacity for engaging in constructive personal, interpersonal and spiritual growth. The humanistic group therapy can be effective with people who have distressing experiences, such those involving paranormal phenomena, and so may be an appropriate method for the further parapsychological exploration of many paranormal experiences.
In the second study Parra and Corbetta evaluated the effects of paranormal and mystical/spiritual experiences on people’s lives and to evaluate changes resulting from such experiences. Twenty four participants attended workshops about paranormal/spiritual experiences. All of the respondents reported at least one paranormal experience, and 83%reported at least one transcendent experience. The high percentage of paranormal experiences reported may reflect the fact that respondents were recruited based on interest in parapsychology and the paranormal. Seventy percent now have a purpose in life as a result of their paranormal or transcendent experience; 62% have had paranormal and/or transcendent experiences since childhood; 54% said they became significantly more spiritual or religious as a result of their experiences; and 54% were helped to understand and accept death. The fact that anomalous experiences apparently induce positive reactions in some people provides a strong impetus for further research. This line of research also has significant implications for understanding better not only those people who volunteered to participate in parapsychological experiments but also the good results of those experiments.
6. Experimental research
Many of our well-known research projects with the cooperation of psychics and mediums were developed under a workshop setting; through regular meetings where people freely interested in their psi-related experiences. As psychoterapists, many of us applied a Rogerian-oriented procedure and how to reduce the stress under which psi tasks are performed to avoid a “cold psi lab”.
IPP members have obtained grants from the Fundação Bial in Porto, Portugal, which have allowed them to conduct studies of psi in the ganzfeld, psychomantheum, and hypnosis “token object” effect), and psychological and personality dimension of anomalous/paranormal experiences:
a. State of consciousness and psi I: Ganzfeld research using visual and musical targets
State of consciousness and psi was our main interest research focus at the IPP. The first experiment used Ganzfeld stimulation is associated to an increase of attention to internal imagery. Investigators have suggested the association to develop an “experimental–hypnagogic” technique to facilitate the study of hypnagogic imagery, an association such as the ganzfeld technique. Alejandro Parra and Jorge Villanueva carried out a ESP/telepathy–focused, non-ganzfeld condition and compared the findings to a psi conducive ganzfeld technique. One hundred thirty-eight participants attended two trials at the Institute of Paranormal Psychology, at Buenos Aires. Also, ganzfeld and non-ganzfeld condition were counter-balanced. Parra and Villanueva concluded that this experiment offered some support to the claim that ganzfeld stimulation is psi conducive; in the case we would find a significant difference between both tests condition, in a positive direction to the Ganzfeld condition (p< .016). The difference between both conditions was also significant (expected= 25%; ganzfeld= 41.3%, p< .001 vs. non-ganzfeld= 27.5). Although, we did not conclude that the “good” ESP results in our experiment using ganzfeld induction were related to a modified state of consciousness due to the fact that these results could be dependent on other variables independently of the non-ordinary state, the results were significant in that address.
A second experiment used musical clips as targets and “visual” as control-target. The ability to detect emotion in music has many educational and practical benefits, however appear few studies reported literature in which sounds have been used as stimuli in extrasensory tests. The present study is undertaken to compare auditory with visual stimuli and to explore whether psychological factors which appear to be favorable in music tests are related with ESP. Musical styles were chosen as targets in this experiment. Fifty four subjects attended two GESP sessions (one trial each). A CD–R contained 3,500 high–resolution color pictures and other CD contained 112 themes on mp3 format were used. Stimulus targets were randomly selected. Both experiments, musical- (p < .008) and visual-target condition (p= .001), in a positive direction for the visual target condition, obtained psi-hitting, but the difference between both was no significant.
b Mirror-gazing and ESP: Psychomanteum psi facilitator
The mirror gazing procedure termed the “psychomanteum” was developed by the world renowned psychiatrist Dr. Raymond Moody. It was designed to facilitate reunion experiences with deceased individuals, as a means of addressing the feelings surrounding bereavement. Although the modern psychomanteum is not normally employed to seek extra–sensory perception (ESP) information about the future, it may be that the psychomanteum is psi-conductive. For example, there are many similarities and differences between psychomanteum experiences and accounts of hypnagogic/hypnopompic imagery, which is conducive to ESP. Alejandro Parra and Jorge Villanueva to explore whether the psychomanteum technique encourages a psi-conducive state of consciousness, which would result in scoring that is significantly above mean chance expectation (MCE). One hundred and thirty participants (92 females and 38 males; Mean age= 47.44) were recruited by announcements in newspapers and our web site. Under psychomanteum condition, psi-hitting was obtained (30.8% above MCE); however, under no-psychomanteum (“control”) condition, 29.2% was obtained (where 25% was expected). The results differ slightly from MCE in the psychomanteum condition (p= .02, one-tailed) in comparison with no-psychomanteum condition, but no significant differences were found. A number of positive correlations were also found, for instance, participants who attained higher scores on auditory and visual hallucinations tended to demonstrate psi-hitting.
c. Exploring Psychic abilities: The “token-object” effect research project
Some psychics and healers claim to obtain impressions of body sensations, visual images of organ dysfunctions, or an “inner knowing”. However, there are few reports of quantitatively evaluated studies with psychics. They sometimes perform “psychometry”, which is defined as an anomalous cognition system, specifically the ability to get “impressions” from objects. Usually it is described as a type of knowledge which allows a psychic or sensitive to receive impressions using a physical object as an inductor or instrument. A series of psychometry-based experimental sessions was designed.
Alejandro Parra and Juan Carlos Argibay explored if there is a significant difference between psychics and nonpsychics. One hundred fifty participants who reported personal experiences of psi were split into two groups, persons claiming ESP experiences but no abilities, or “nonpsychics” (N= 88) and persons claiming ESP skills as well as experiences, or “psychics” (N= 62). Four adult volunteers who suffered from medically diagnosed diseases (i.e. diabetes mellitus, hernia hiatal, osteoarthritis, and varicose veins) acted as target persons (TPs). They delivered personal objects (a comb, handkerchief, hair brooch, or billfold), which were coded and recoded blind by both experimenters. Instructions asked participants to describe the symptoms in non-technical language. Each participant received four pairs of objects (target and control) to be “touched”. They performed four trials of psychic diagnosis of the TPs, who remained unidentified. Although both groups combined scored significantly above chance (p = .01), there was only slight support for the claim that the “psychics”(p = .03) scored higher than the nonpsychics (p = .08) Although neither group obtained highly significant results, high variability was found; it was in a positive direction for the psychics and the negative direction for the nonpsychics (p < .05). It appears that psychic diagnosis relates to perceptions of “information” in and around TPs, and that these may be difficult to translate into physical diagnoses. The psychics and healers were also not trained in medical terminology, anatomy or physiology, and therefore may have had difficulties providing impressions specific to anatomical structures and quantifiable in conventional terminology.
A second experiment aimed to compare a group of ordinary people (non-psychics) with selfclaimed psychics in order to determine if participants were capable of distinguishing between living and dead people from photographs of same. The sample consisted of 169 participants divided into two groups: psychics. (N = 74) and .non-psychics (N = 95) but no significant differences were found. Those participants who claimed to have psychometric ability (that is, were able to pick up impressions from an object by being in physical contact with it) neither obtained psi hitting, nor demonstrated greater variability in their psi hits.
According some traditions, there are holy places in countries such as India, Egypt, Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan, that represent sacred sites or power-filled energy centres to which many people pilgrimage. It has been claimed that psychics are capable of distinguishing by ESP the “sacred” nature of these sites. Juan Carlos Argibay and Alejandro Parra we sought to extend this approach by identifying another psychometry task that might distinguish between psychics and nonpsychics, and chose to focus on a task in which participants had to decide which of two token objects was originally from a sacred site. The sample consisted of 147 participants. A number of sand samples were taken from Cheops Pyramid in Egypt and water samples from a source of water (i.e. “blessed” water). The little containers were matched with control samples of sand and water from non-sacred sites. Although overall scores were slightly above chance, they were not statistically significant (for water, t (152) = 1.18, p = .12; for sand, t (152) = .54, p = .29; for both combined, t (152) = 1.07, p – .14). We analyzed whether there were differences in the number of hits overall for psychics (N = 25) and control, non-psychics (N = 122), but no significant difference was found. We also examined whether scores differed when sand or water was being used as the target, but also no significant difference was obtained (F1, 152 = .26; p = .61). The variability of the obtained scores turned out significantly greater than expected by chance (F1, 153 = 1.51; p < .01). The difference between the two groups could be due to “psychics” being better at interpreting available psi information than control.
Psychic reading is a method used to foretell the future of an individual. However, cold reading is a non-paranormal technique used by many self-claimed psychics and mediums to determine details about another person in order to convince them that the reader knows much more about a subject than he or she actually does. One of our study was to determine if the ‘psychics’ participants could give impressions while touching the objects of two sitters. The experiment was introduced to the participants by telling them that two different conditions, “face-to-face” and “remote” psychometry, were being undertaken using a physical object as psi stimuli. The sample consisted of 83 participants. Those participants who claimed to have psychometry psi ability (“Psychic” group) showed greater psi hitting than “Non-Psychics” in both conditions (“remote” and “face-to-face”). Because face-to-face readings allow for sensory cues, no firm conclusion of “genuine” psi can be justified from such an experiment.
A common procedure to encourage self-claimed psychics is to use iconic representations (photographs) as inductors. The aim of this study was to compare two conditions – “mental” and “motor” – using images of the faces of persons as targets. Specifically, we wanted to determine if the scores were different based on two kinds of stimulus (diseased and healthy). Participants, who were clustered as psychics and nonpsychics. The sample consisted of 224 participants, recruited through an e-mail list, and their ages ranged from 18 to 75 (M = 44.19 years old). Eight photographs included four of subjects “sick” with a medically diagnosed disease and four of healthy persons (the “controls”). All of the images of sick persons were taken from six months to two years before the diseases were discovered. The results of the two procedures were significantly above chance: the mean “mental” score = 2.32 (p < .001, one-tailed), and the mean “motor” score = 2.15 (p = .016, one-tailed). A second analysis was carried out to determine if the mental and motor procedures led to different scores, indeed, mental scored significantly higher than motor (the mean “mental” score = 2.32 vs. the mean “motor” score = 2.15 (p < .001).
(d) Psychological and personality dimension of anomalous/paranormal experiences
One of the most impressive distinction of our research projects was adopt two approaches, that are, (1) psychological variables and (2) the phenomenological exploration. They serves for two main practical reasons: firstly, it is a complementary resource to have a thoroughly perspective of variables others often observed; secondly, it help to correlate the psi-hitting (or sometimes psi-missing or no results any case) with psychological or phenomenological variables involved in psi (such as interviews-in-depth and groups/workshops with healers, mediums and psychics and ordinary people). Regard phenomenological variable, thousands of audio and tape records of our ganzfeld and psychomanteum trials and studies with psychics awaiting to be classified and analized so we hope to have enough time to cover better this approach. However, a great number of articles were published on psychometric measures in relation with our significative psi results and/or paranormal/anomalous experiences reported. We examinated perceptual variables such as transliminality, “thin” boundaries, MBTI and MIPS personality profiles, neuroticism and, extraversion, empathy, sensation seeking, visual imagery wellbeing, dissociation/absorption, thinking styles and abnormal variables (i.e. schizotypy and hallucination proneness) over many experiences, such as aura vision, apparitions and “feeling ghosts”, ESP experiences, out of body experiences, premonition, among others. There are a lot of article published about them in many English- and Spanish-speaking peer-reviewed journals.
7. Independent Psi-Researchers: Some works
At Institute of Psychology Paranormal always was the space to welcome a number of independent psi-researchers, something like the “Golden Age” of the former Foundation for Research of the Nature of Man (now Rhine Research Center) where a lot of researcher were becoming from many parts of world to work on parapsychology, with no distincion of beliefs systems. Two typical cases here were Ivan T. Lépes (1918-2014) and (is) Juan Gimeno. Ivan Lépes carried out since the eighties a long series of trials that continued until his death, based specifically on the study of the alleged ability psi of an insect species (Drosophila melanogaster known as “fruit fly”). Trained as enthomologist, in the early eighties, he joined the Institute of Parapsychology Buenos Aires and early nineties, became part of the Institute of Paranormal Psychology. Lepes maintained a keen interest in the issue of genetic selection to determine if psi could be transmitted transgenerationally. According Lepes, psi experiments interspecies communication have been virtually neglected in the field of research AnPsi (Psi Animal), which focused its efforts on the study of communication psi human / animal. Lepes designed more than a dozen experimental studies in cooperation with several colleagues, including Juan Gimeno and Juan Carlos Argibay. Lepes acknowledged had operated with 500 generations of Dm, from the beginning of his studies, and was hopeful of finding a genetic variable psi). Despite the specificity of their area of interest, however, they deserve continued his studies by other researchers in the future.
Juan Gimeno is probably the most selfless and dedicated biographer of the parapsychology in Argentina. He collected the bulk of material from archives and libraries about healers (i.e. Augusto Frin and Enrique Marchesini), dowsers (i.e. Luis Acquavella, Valentin King and Anne de la Motte), mediums (i.e. Osvaldo Fidanza), psychics (i.e. Marcelo Acquistapace, Mischa Cotlar, Jose Maria Feola, and Irma Maggi), among others, most of them compiled in his book El buscador de maravillas. During a period, he was associated with Naum Kreiman, whom was author of a biography (together with Dora Ivsniky), and now he is Editor-in-Chief of Comunicaciones en Parapsicologia, a postumal journal created in his memory by wife´s Kreiman.
Gimeno also has been interested into survival research, involving in Transcommunication Instrumental with main emphasis on macro-PK and Spiritualist seances, conducting a number of groups at the Institute and outside, togeher with spiritualists and non-spiritualists in terms to understand better the group dynamics of the table-tipping movements. He also conducted several experiments psi, such as an ESP study with mediums in an Argentine Spiritualist Society (together with Juan Manuel Corbetta), he carried out number of trial of ganzfeld research (together with Naum Kreiman), and a study about the DMILs (bio-PK over seeds) as a reply of the Novillo Pauli´s trials in the seventies, and historical research, such as a collection of thousands of archives from many Spiritualist societies in search of missed cases of mediums in the Argentine spiritualism literature (i.e. the case of Laboratorio Metapsiquico “Gustave Geley”, whose activities were by long time unknown for us). Together with Juan Manuel Corbetta and Fabiana Savall, they were co-author of a research book on documents of the Kardecian piritualism movement in Argentina since 1877 up to date.
8. Undergraduate Studies on Psi-Related Topics
As a teacher and associated researcher at the Universidad Abierta Interamericana since twelve years ago, Alejandro Parra conducted three courses at the Faculty of Psychology at the Universidad Abierta Interamericana: (1) Psychological Theories and Systems, (2) Applied Statistics in Psychology, and (3) Psychotherapy Research. Through course of “Applied Statistics”, since 2009 up to 2012, Parra conducted several studies with hundreds of students using dozens of psychological and personality measures to relate them with spontaneous parapsychological experiences as a educational resource in orrder to teach psychometrics in psychology. Later and up to date, Parra is part of the Undergraduate and Posgraduate Thesis Commission, as part of the procedure to graduation in psychology in Argentina. During a two-year course, hundreds of students should also design and carry out short research projects under the Parra’s supervision. Although many students may –of course– choose any research topic on psychology, it is a valuable occasion to be involved in a psi-related topic as long as the student “empath” with parapsychology and transpersonal psychology, which often used to be surveys, psychological/personality correlations (but seldom experimental).
As an example, some of the topics involved had been: Hallucinatory experience and psi (Giannina Maschi), Parenting styles, child trauma and paranormal experiences in adulthood (Mariana Ugarte), Empathy and magical thinking in clinical psychologists and tarot readers (Claudia Sciacca), Unusual perceptual experiences in nursing (Paola Gimenez Amarilla), Personality measures associated to anomalous/paranormal dreams (Jesica Sosa), and Schizotypy proneness, paranormal experiences and parental stimulation to the childhood fantasy (Cristian Castro), among others.
9. Books and Publishing Projects
There a great books production authored by Argentine authors or translated into Spanish in Argentina, although it is not enough as we want, however. The Argentine parapsychological literature dated back from 1880 (mesmerism and psychical research at the beginning of the 20th century), and the main pionneers produced at least one or more books, such as classics and best sellers En los Limites de la Psicología´s Musso and Los Fenómenos Parapsicologicos’s Novillo Pauli. Since two decades, the publishing house has not interested in technical books on parapsychology so it is neccesary to print by ourselves.
During the period 1977 to 2015, hundreds of title were translated into Spanish from English and other language (Argentina 158, 32.8%, compared with 54% Spain, 6.4% Mexico, and 2.9 from other countries), however, many books were produced by Argentines as well, such as ABC de la Parapsicologia (Antonio Las Heras, 1992) who presents a pop-parapsychology approach, Curso de Parapsicología (Naum Kreiman, 1994) who overviews practical application of psi and its relationship to yoga, Los Curanderos: Mis Colegas (Samuel Tarnopolsky, 1994) which focuses the interest of folk medicine, Fenómenos Paranormales en el Yoga Clásico y en el Cristianismo (Walter Gardini, 1993) which discusses in the Patanjali’s Yoga Aphorisms and the psi, altered states of consciousness, and the mysticism of yoga practitioners, among many others.
Mainly due to the “on demand” procedure of printed books now is easier and cheaper than in the past, we created our own publishing house called “Antigua”, established by Juan Manuel Corbetta, where Alejandro Parra was named editor of “New Consciousness Series” to publish many of our unpublished manuscripts. Fortunatly, some of them are Las Alas de Psiqué (two vols.) (2014) which serves as a metaphor for the current status of the field, i.e., the efforts of psi researchers to transcend and expand mainstream understandings of living systems, Mente Sin Fronteras (2014), a compilation of the selected articles previously published by the RAPP, and Ojos Invisibles (2015), a collection of chapters written by many authors on current parapsychology. We have a lot of titles negotiated to translate and publish which will see light in the close future.
10. Macro-PK Research and Spontaneous PK research
Juan Gimeno and Alejandro Parra received the Gilbert Roller Fund (a Grant managed by Parapsychological Association) which supported the efforts of an established sitter group in Argentina to replicate previously documented anomalous phenomena and further investigate the apparent psychokinetic nature of their efforts. The 2014 Parapsychological Association (PA) grant competition has come to a close, and one grant proposal investigating macroscopic psychokinetic phenomena has been awarded. Parra, assisted by associate researcher Juan Gimeno, continued to lead research on the manifestation of apparent anomalous macro-PK phenomena in an Argentinian sitter group. The sitter group, originally established in March 2013, comprised of nine volunteers plus the two researchers, seeked to observe ostensible psychokinetic phenomenon in the form of table movements. Parra and Gimeno recreated under good observation conditions for this phenomenon to occur as it was previously witnessed during weekly meetings at the IPP. During those meetings, Juan Gimeno noted that the events tended to happen in the presence of one sitter (Ariel F.), and both planned to further explore the phenomena with his cooperation. The researchers aimed to explore relationships between macro-PK phenomena, natural forces, and states of consciousness. Some planned experiments replicated the results of previous occurrences of anomalous table movements and examine the physiological and environmental variables present within and surrounding the sitter group. Two papers are in press now, but the impressive results of the research project will be published in English and Spanish during 2016.
A poltergeist case was explored at Rio Tercero, a little town in the province of Córdoba, Argentina. Oscar and his wife Mónica live with their four children. The movement of stones is characteristic of the phenomena; they move towards windows, often destroying the glass. Three to five holes of up to 12cm diameter have been made in plastic blinds and other holes in fabric curtains. similar hole was made in a mirror. Such activity started February to March 2004. On the night of the 26th February, Mónica, one of the principal witnesses, described an incident with stones. Later, the incidents continued at irregular intervals, but the intensity of them increased. The size of the stones, which are typical to the Cordobese hills, can be found on the road to the family’s house.
Twenty‑nine attacks with stones have destroyed windows, mirrors, and the TV set. Only on two occasions have the stones taken a ‘wrong turn’ and hit a piece of furniture or the wall, rather than glass. Andrés’s psychological report indicates that the young man manifests aggression verbally towards his family and seldom towards strangers. He can be impulsive and antisocial, which makes social relations difficult. A series of neuropsychological tests were given to Andrés. During my visit, we also conducted some projective drawing tests with him (Draw a House‑Tree‑Person Test and “Draw Your Family” Test and Andrés completed some personality scales: Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire‑Revised (EPQ‑R), the Dissociative Experiences Scale –Revised (DES-R), and the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ). The scores indicated emotional instability, irritability, impulsivity and feelings of inadequacy in his environment.
During the last twenty years the IPP has achieved much. Alejandro Parra introduced parapsychology –slowly but increasingly– by using other names such as “paranormal psychology.” Some times, we receive some justified and unjustified critics to the term “Paranormal Psychology”. I should to say that, indeed there is no difference between paranormal psychology and parapsychology, but the change of terms was introduced because of the increased confusion between proper parapsychology and the activities of charlatans, many of whom have abused the term by approaching it as ‘pop’ parapsychology. However, I disagree in part with term “anomalistic” because it is usually confused with “abnormal”, as insane mental states. In Argentina, many people continue believing that the term parapsychologist is equivalent to psychic. Gertrude Schmeider adviced me years ago that paranormal is really the best term, because the “para” prefix is not associated with pathological, abnormal, marginal or pseudoscientific concepts. At the same time, it is helpful to recognize the traditional and historical relationship with “parapsychology” as regards ESP, PK and afterdeath/survival research-related topics. “Paranormal experiences” are an exciting topic for many people –in both popular and professional groups– in terms of dealing with theoretically controversial apparitional/haunting, out-of-body, near-death experiences and other paranormal/anomalous ans spiritual experiences.
Finally, one of the most advantages to research or to educate at the Institute is openness and plurality of viewpoints, all based on the work of rigorous research and de-ideologized, that is, in Argentina there is no ideological tradition in parapsychology, for example, no (or scarce) differences found in the Catholic parapsychology (i.e. Father Quevedo) vs. the current dominant Kardecian spiritualists; or “divulgative” and popular style in Spain or Mexico, to give two examples. Although Argentina is a country of rooted European cultural traditions, there is a strong skepticism mainly in the area of Buenos Aires that differentiates it from many other Latin American countries and even the interior of Argentina.
One of the most impressive achievement in 2015 is the creation of a delegation of the IPP in Santander, Spain, to operate psi research and seminars conducted by Marcelo Eremian, one of the most promising researchers of our new Argentine generation, who is an expert in spontaneous cases and haunting. Beyond this perspective, we have great decades in front of us and we plan to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Institute in 2018.
(2019). Negative experiences in childhood, parental style and resilience among people reporting paranormal experiences. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 207(4), 264-270.
(2019). Eventi paranormali in un impianto di ospedali: Un’indagine sulle esperienze anomalie riferite da infermieri in Argentina. Luce e Ombra, 119, 1, 25-32.
(2018). Transliminality, “thin” boundaries and aura vision as a non-pathological anomalous experience. Journal of Exceptional Experiences and Psychology, 6(2), 28-36.
(2018). Perceived luckiness, style of cognition and absorption, and their relation with premonitions in dreams. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 82(3), 148-162.
(2018). Perceptualpersonality variables associated with entity encounter experiences. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 18(1), 23-48.
(2018). A follow-up study on unusual perceptual experiences in hospital settings related by nurses. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 32(4), 681–688.
(2018). The relation between premonitions in dreams and perceived luckiness, style of cognition and absorption. Journal of Parapsychology, 82(2), p. 114 [Resúmen].
(2018). Anomalous experiences reported by nurses: Second study examining personality, perceptual and cognitive factors. Journal of Parapsychology, 82(2), 124-125 [Resúmen].
(2018). Cognitive and emotional empathy in relation to five paranormal/anomalous experiences. Journal of Parapsychology, 76, 218-219 [Abstract].
(2017). Phenomenology of non-dream premonition experience and its relationship with cognitive style, absorption, and luckiness. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 17(2), 127–145.
[con Paola Gimenez Amarilla] (2017). Anomalous/paranormal experiences reported by nurses in relation to their patients in hospitals. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 31(1), 11–29.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2016). Exploratory study of the temperament theory and paranormal experiences. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 80(3), 214-223.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2016). Individual, perceptual and psychological differences between psi-tested self-claimed psychics and non-psychics. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 16 (1), pp. 63-84.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2016). The boundary construct and anomalous experiences in psychics. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 80 (1), 13–23.
(2015). Humanistic therapy, mental health and paranormal experiences (Translated into Arab by S. Khaled Zahran). Journal of the Egyptian Association of Psychological Studies, 25 (90), 123-154.
(2015). Parapsicologia nell’Egitto dei faraoni e nell’Egitto moderno. Luce e Ombra, 115, 1, 75-80.
(2015). Gender differences in sensation seeking and paranormal/anomalous experiences. The Open Psychology Journal, 8, 54-58.
(2015). Seeing rare things with the mind’s eye: Visual imagery vividness and paranormal/anomalous experiences. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 15 (1), 37-51.
(2015). Framework of belief in paranormal experiences and its relation to positive/negative schizotypy. Paranthropology: Journal of Anthropological Approaches to the Paranormal, 6 (1), 26-34.
(2015). On the edge of the anomalous experience: Out of body experiences, Transliminality and “thin” boundaries. International Journal of Neurology Research, 1 (1), 1-6.
(2015). Personality traits associated with premonition experience: Neuroticism, extraversion, empathy, and schizotypy Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 79.1, (918), 1-10.
[con Juan Manuel Corbetta] (2014). Changes resulting from paranormal/spiritual experiences and their effects on people’s wellbeing: An exploratory examination. Journal for the Study of Spirituality, 4 (1), 71-80.
(2013). The cost of being different: the relationship between paranormal experiences and positive/negative schizotypy. Journal of Parapsychology, 77 (2), p.174 [Abstract].
(2013). A phenomenological examination of premonition experiences: A survey study. Journal of Parapsychology, 77 (2), p.174 [Abstract].
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2013). Psi and death of the person-target: An experiment with highly emotional iconic representations. Journal of Parapsychology, 77 (2), p.175 [Abstract].
[con Juan Manuel Corbetta] (2013). Group therapy for Anomalous/Paranormal Experiences: Post-effect preliminary examination of the humanistic approach. Journal of Exceptional Experiences and Psychology, 1 (2), 20-26.
(2013). Parapsicologia clinica e il suo contributo alla ricerca psi o… come si può affrontare la propria paura della psi? Discorso presidenciale a Viterbo, Agosto 2013: 56th Convegno Annuale della Parapsychological Association. Quaderni di Parapsicologia, 45, 3-14.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2013). Psi and death of the person-target: An experiment with highly emotional iconic representations. NeuroQuantology, 4 (1), 537-543.
(2013). A phenomenological examination of premonition experiences in dreams and waking states: A survey study. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 13 (2), 187-212.
(2013). Approaching a metamorphosis in parapsychology. MindField, 5 (2), 62-68.
(2013). 2012 Presidential Address: What have we learned about psi? Reflections on the present of parapsychology. Journal of Parapsychology, 77, 9-20.
(2013) [con Juan Carlos Argibay] Anomalous remote diagnosis: Mental and motor psi impressions under iconic representation of the person-target.Journal of Parapsychology, 77, 123-130.
(2013). Mauvais sommeil et perceptions inhabituelles: Une relation de cause à effet? Bulletin Métapsychique, 14, 10-15.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2013). A free-response ESP test in two hypnotic susceptibility groups: A pilot study. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 13 (1), 27-35.
(2013). Cognitive and emotional empathy in relation to five paranormal/anomalous experiences. North American Journal of Psychology, 15 (3), 405-412.
(2012). Fundraising for psi research: BIAL Foundation contribution to the development of parapsychology. MindField, 5 (1), 8-12.
(2012). Possible future for parapsychology. Journal of Parapsychology, 76 [Supplement], 43-44.
[con Juan Manuel Corbetta] (2012). Group therapy for anomalous/paranormal experiences: Post-effect preliminary examination of the humanistic approach. Journal of Parapsychology, 76, 220-221 [Abstract].
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2012). Anomalous remote diagnosis: Mental and motor impressions under iconic representation of the person target. Journal of Parapsychology, 76, 219-220 [Abstract].
(2012). Cognitive and emotional empathy in relation to five paranormal/anomalous experiences. Journal of Parapsychology, 76, 218-219 [Abstract].
(2012) [con Juan Carlos Argibay] Dissociation, absorption, fantasy proneness and sensation-seeking in psychic claimants. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 76.4, (909), 193-203.
(2012). Canvassing your opinion: The questionnaire for the PA members. MindField, 4 (3), p. 102.
(2012). Varieties of clinical practices with exceptional experiences. Third International Expert Meeting on Clinical Parapsychology. MindField, 4 (2), 53-55.
(2012). The transcultural approach of parapsychology: The 54th Annual Convention at Curitiba, Brazil. MindField, 4 (1), 29-32.
[con Jorge Villanueva] (2011). L´Uso dello Psychomanteum nello studio degli alterati di conscienza. Quaderni di Parapsicologia, 43 (2), 119-128.
(2011). Thinking styles of psychic claimants. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 11 (1), 61-71.
(2011). Joining Forces for the 2010s: Positive influence in the development of parapsychology in non-English countries. MindField, 3 (3), 8-9.
(2011). Institute of Paranormal Psychology: Twenty years of research, education and counseling. MindField, 3 (2), 8-9.
[con Jorge Villanueva] (2010). Unusual perceptual experiences and ESP under psychomanteum stimulation: Imagery/hallucination proneness and schizotypal personality measures. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 10 (2), 120-139.
(2010). Aura vision as a hallucinatory experience: Its relation to fantasy proneness, absorption, and other perceptual maladjustments Journal of Mental Imagery, 34 (3&4), 49-64.
(2010). Out-of-body experiences and hallucinatory experiences: A psychological approach. Imagination, Cognition and Personality, 29 (3), 211-224.
[con Luis Espinoza Paul] (2010). Extrasensory experiences and hallucinatory experience: Comparision between two non-clinical samples linked with psychological measures. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 74.3 (900), 1-11.
(2010). Bozzoli di luce: L´esperienza di vedere l´aura. Luce e Ombra, 110, 4, 357-364.
(2010). Maltrattamenti sui bambini ed esperienze paranormali. Luce e Ombra, 110, 1, 131-137.
[con Luis Espinoza Paul] (2009). Exploring the links between nocturnal hallucinatory experiences and personality characteristics. European Journal of Parapsychology, 24.2, 139-154.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2009). “Face-to-face” psychic vs. “remote” psychic readings: Comparing psychics/non-psychic groups mediatized by “token-object” effect. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 9, 57-69.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2009). An experimental study with ordinary people for testing “sacred” objects through psi detection. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 73.1 (894), 41-49.
(2009). Ritratti dall´Aldila: L´Arte del medium. Luce e Ombra, 109, 4, 303-316.
(2008). Sapevo che mi telefonavi!: I piu recenti studi sulla telepatia telefonica. Luce e Ombra, 108, 3, 311-320.-
[con Daniel Gómez Montanelli] (2008). Are spontaneous anomalous/paranormal experiences disturbing?: A survey among under-graduate stundents. International Journal of Parapsychology, 13, 1-14.-
(2008). Esperienze fuori del corpo ed esperienze allucinatorie: Un approccio psicologico. Quaderni di Parapsicologia, 39, 9, 32-51.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2008). Reading faces: An experimental exploration of psychometry using photographs and names. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 8, 47-57.
(2007). Forgotten Pioneers of Parapsychology: Biology without Metapsychics, a Bird without Wings: Orlando Canavesio´s Contributions to Parapsychology. Psypioneer, Vol.3, No.9, 195-196.
[con Juan Carlos Argibay] (2007). Comparing a free-response psychometry test with a free-response visual imagery test for a non-psychic sample. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 71.2 (887), 91-99.
(2006). “Seeing and feeling ghosts”: Absorption, fantasy proneness, and healthy schizotypy as predictors of crisis apparition experiences. Journal of Parapsychology, 70, 357-372.
[con Jorge Villanueva] (2006). ESP under the ganzfeld, in contrast with the induction of relaxation as a psi-conducive state. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 6 (2), 167-186.
[con Jorge Villanueva] (2004). Are musical themes better than visual images as ESP-targets? An experimental study using the ganzfeld technique. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 4 (2), 114-127.
[con Daniel Gómez Montanelli] (2004). A clinical approach to the emotional processing of anomalous/paranormal experiences in group therapy. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 68.3, 876, 129-142.
[con Jorge Villanueva] (2003). Personality factors and psi-ganzfeld sessions: A replication and extension. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 3 (2), 159-174.
[con Jorge Villanueva] (2003). Personality factors and ESP during ganzfeld session. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 67.1, 870, 26-36.
(2002). L’effetto “11 de Settembre” e la conscienza globale. Luce e Ombra, 102 (3), 269-280.
(1999). Parapsicologia in Giappone: Passato e presente. Quaderni di Parapsicologia, 30 (2), 66-84.
[con Carlos S. Alvarado] (1997). The 1997 Joint PA-SPR Convention in Brighton. PA News, No.3, July-September, 1-7.-
(1997). Parapsychological developments in Argentina (1990-1995). Journal of American Society for Psychical Research, 91, 2, 103-109.
(1997). Psi in hispanic America: A bibliographic guide. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 62, 63-71.
(1996). Sensitivi al servizio del governo americano. La CIA e 20 milione di dollari per la parapsicologia. Luce e Ombra, 96, 267-270.
(1996). “Encuentro Psi 1996”: Held in Buenos Aires. PA News, No.2, p.10.
(1995). Nuove dimensione in parapsicologia: Una prospecttiva nazionale ed internazionale. Quaderni di Parapsicología, 26, 91-103.
(1995) Research aspects and social situation of the parapsychology in Argentina: Brief history and future posibilities. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 60, 214-228.
(1995). Richtlinen fur eine verstarkte Zusammenarbeit in der parapsychologischen Forschung der deutsch und spanischsprachingen. Grenzgebiete der Wissenschaft, 44, 66-69.
(1994). Encounter Psi 1994: Parapsychology in Argentina. PA News, Feb./Jun.1995, p.6.
(1992) Parapsychologie in Argentinien: Geschichte und Perspektiven. Grenzgebiete der Wissenschaft, 41, 353-359.