Are spirit mediums really communicating with the dead? My Magic 8 Ball says “Outlook not so good.”
But a new brain study of Brazilian mediums shows that something decidedly strange is occurring during the famous “trance state,” and no one has a ready answer to explain exactly what’s going on.
Ten mediums—five less expert and five experienced—were injected with a radioactive tracer to capture their brain activity during normal writing and during the practice of psychography, which involves allegedly channeling written communication from the “other side” while in a trance-like state. The subjects were scanned using SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography) to highlight the areas of the brain that are active and inactive during the practice.
The mediums ranged from 15 to 47 years of automatic writing experience, performing up to 18 psychographies per month. All were right-handed, in good mental health, and not currently using any psychiatric drugs.