Paranormal can be defined as pertaining to an occurrence or perception beyond or lacking scientific explanation. Ranging from mythical creatures to the existence of ghosts to fortune telling, the average person’ experience with the paranormal is very mysterious and often filled with doubt. Because paranormal activity by definition cannot be explained by scientific reasoning, researchers in these phenomena have sought to address this doubt by attempting to provide concrete evidence for their existence. The term psi refers to any abnormal energy or information transfer that cannot be explained through biological or physical mechanisms. Examples of psi include psychokinesis, telepathy, and extra sensory perception or precognition (Bem &
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Participants were shown everyday common nouns drawn from four categories and then asked to recall as many words as they could remember in a surprise recall task. After the free recall, participants were then prompted to practice half of the words, which were randomly generated by the computer. The results of the percent recall of the control group, who did not practice any words after the free call, as compared with the rehearsal group showed no significant findings (Bem, Feeling the Future: Experimental Evidence for Anomalous Retroactive Influences on Cognition and Affect, 2011).
As noted above, researchers in the parapsychology field have long been interested in providing irrefutable scientific evidence for the existence of psi phenomena. However, many of the studies that have been conducted lack scientific credibility for a variety of reasons outside of reproducibility including randomization errors, lack of key control variables, and issues with effect size. One theme that has been touched on in the literature is the effect of meditation and relaxation on precognition. Psi behavior such as extrasensory perception has been associated with meditation, dreaming, and other altered states of consciousness. Studies have shown that psi phenomena like precognition are enhanced by a meditative state (Bem & Honorton, Does Psi Exist? Replicable Evidence for an Anomalous Process of Information Transfer, 1994). For this reason, other everyday states