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Psychometry: Fact or Fantasy

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The practice of Psychometry has been around for many years. By definition, Psychometry "is a method of predicting past, present and future events by holding an object" (Whitaker, Fortune Telling: How to Reveal the Secrets of the Future 76). Psychometry is also an effective way of obtaining information on a particular person or place, so it can be extremely beneficial in criminal investigations. Jewelry and articles of clothing are the most common objects given to a psychometrist, but any object may be used as long as the owner has touched it (Whitaker, Fortune Telling: How to Reveal the Secrets of the Future 77).

The word Psychometry stems from two Greek words, 'psyche' which pertains to the human mind and being, and 'metron' which means measure. Psychometry should not be confused with Psychometrics, which deals with psychological measurements. A practitioner of Psychometry is called a psychometrist, while somebody who is involved in Psychometrics is called a psychometrician (Wagner n.p.). Psychometry was first discovered by an American physiology professor named Joseph R. Buchanan, who made his students use only their sense of touch to identify various drugs that were hidden inside sealed containers. The majority of his students were able to identify each drug correctly (Wagner n.p.). He then wrote about this experiment in his book, "Journal of Man" where he theorized that, "All objects have 'souls', and each 'soul' contains memories" (Wagner n.p.). Another American professor named William H. Denton took an interest in Buchanan's work and decided to conduct some psychometric experiments of his own. He asked his sister, Ann Denton Cridge, whom he suspected possessed psychic abilities, to identify small objects that were hidden beneath many layers of cloth. Ann placed each cloth-wrapped object to her forehead and was able to correctly identify each object. William then conducted the same experiment, this time using random people. And, just like Ann Denton Cridge, majority of them were able to accurately predict the objects that were beneath the layers of cloth. Gustav Pagenstecher was a German doctor who, like Denton, suspected someone he knew to be gifted with psychic abilities. This person was a patient of his, named Maria Reyes de Zieroid. Gustav Pagenstecher placed her under strict observation and noticed that after touching certain objects, she had the ability to provide historical information about its owners. Maria could also describe emotions felt by the owners of the objects (Wagner n.p.). Because of this, Gustav Pagenstecher theorized that "All objects have 'vibrations'" and that "A psychometrist could tune in to the experiential 'vibrations' condensed in the object'" (Wagner n.p.).

It isn't difficult for psychics to practice Psychometry. Contrary to popular belief, real psychics don't need the aid of a magic potion or crystal ball. In fact, all psychics really need to practice the craft is a clear mind and their psychic dexterity (Whitaker, Fortune Telling: How to Reveal the Secrets of the Future 47). According to Sylvia Browne and Lindsay Harrison, "The energy that emanates from all living things on earth is powerful enough to impact and be absorbed by all non-living things around them. Psychometry is the ability to sense and interpret the living energy that has been absorbed by inanimate objects" (228). Every object, no matter how big or how small, or how old or how new, absorbs energy and it is up to the psychometrist to detect that energy and make it more perceptible to others. The energy captured in an object can manifest itself in a psychometrist in many ways. Sylvia Browne and Lindsay Harrison say that, "Perceptions of psychometric energy in an object can come in the form of visions, smells, sounds, emotions and even specific empathic physical sensations like pain, heat and cold" (228). Basically, every person's essence is left on every object that they come into contact with, and a psychometrist is able to detect this essence in order to find out significant details about the person. Psychometry is used in many situations and for many different reasons. It is used to detect health problems and to improve people's love lives. It is also used to aid criminal investigators in extremely hard cases and to help find missing persons (Whitaker, Develop Your Psychic Ability: Unlock Your Intuition and Psychic Potential 72).

Skepticism towards psychic findings in criminal investigations has been present for many years. In fact, people have doubted the accuracy of psychics since the 19th century (Browne and Harrison 223). Today, psychics have steadily gained popularity and credibility in the field of criminal investigation, thanks to the numerous psychometrists who have significantly contributed in criminal cases, such as Gerard Croiset. Besides solving the case of the missing girl in New York, and the boy in Japan in less than 24 hours, he had also gained immense popularity for finding the body of a missing girl in Scotland without leaving his home. A young girl from Glasgow named Pat McAdam had disappeared after hitching a ride with a mysterious stranger. Police searched frantically for her but to no avail. Dumfries journalist Frank Ryan decided to travel to Holland to enlist the help of Croiset. After seeing a picture of Pat and holding a Bible that had once belonged to her, Croiset said that she was dead and was able to vividly describe the location of her body. Croiset was even able to pinpoint the exact location of her body on a map. Police searched the area and found Pat McAdam's body, exactly where Gerard Croiset said it was (Nicholas 126-7). Another psychometrist that has contributed significantly on criminal cases is Carla Baron. Besides bewildering investigators by always giving accurate predictions, she also serves as a "psychic spokeswoman" and frequently appears on investigative shows and gives talks and seminars on psychic abilities (Braden 127). Other psychometrists, such as Stefan Ossowiecki and George McMullen, have helped lessen doubt and suspicion regarding psychometric abilities by subjecting themselves to a series of tests. Stefan Ossoweicki was known for successfully finding missing persons. He participated in a psychometric test administered



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