Sheldrake’s Sense of Being Stared At

Sunday, January 8th, 2006

Over the years I have been following Rupert Sheldrake’s experiments on the sense of being stared at with interest. I asked him today about the following two questions:

1. Power of the stare: I was wondering if you had tried a variation on the classic staring experiment where the starer varies the strength of the stare. I would use the same basic experimental design, but change the two conditions. In both cases the sender would be looking at the receiver, but one case would be a “casual glance” and the other would be a “hard stare.” The question I am trying to answer is how much we can change our morphic field with our intention. My casual experience is that there is an effect and I was hoping you might have tried this already or might be willing to have some of your experimenters try this variation of the design.

2. Results from delayed staring: I seem to remember that you tried a series of experiments with video tape where the stare came after the receiver had marked down his/her answers. I couldn’t find the experiment when I went to look for it so I have remembered the time-delay part of the experiment incorrectly. What I remember is that you found significant abilities to detect the stare even thought he stare occurred later. My question is what happens when a second (third, etc.) starer looks at the receiver at an even later time. The implications of continued significance in the results would pose some interesting questions about causality. To assume that causality exists, one would have to propose that the answers of the receiver influenced the randomization of the looking/not looking at a later time. (If you haven’t tried a delayed stare, I hope you will.)