Tuesday, April 16, 2013   1:43 PM

Journal of Parapsychology: The Future of Parapsychology

Carlos S. Alvarado, Ph.D., Rhine Research Center

The December 2012 issue of the Journal of Parapsychology is devoted to the topic: Where Will Parapsychology Be in the Next 25 Years?

Organized by John Palmer, editor of the journal, this exciting issue presents short essays on the topic by 32 individuals.

Some of the contributions are:

Feeling the Future (Daryl J. Bem)

Parapsychology's Future: A Curmudgeonly Perspective (Stephen E. Braude)

Psi is Here to Stay (Etzel Cardena)

The Pursuit of the Paranormal or the Study of Anomalous Experiences? Parapsychology's Next 25 Years (Harvey J. Irwin)

The Easily Tested Ideas Have Been Tried, Now Engage the Phenomena (J.E. Kennedy)

Parapsychology in Context: The Big Pictute (Edward F. Kelly and Emily W. Kelly)

Parapsychology in the Next 25 Yeras--Still a Butterfly Science? (Chris Roe)

The Paradoxical Disappearance of Parapsychology in Brazil (Wellington Zangari and Fatima Regina Machado)

The issue closes with an excellent essay by John Palmer in which he summarizes the opinions of the authors of the various articles. He states that 14 authors were optimistic about the future of the field, while two were pessimistic, and four presented mixed views.

The essays covered aspects related to theory and methodology, but also a variety of extrascientific factors. While there were exceptions, many authors predicted that parapsychology will be better integrated to psychology in the future, but there were exceptions to this view.

Overall the issue is a valuable contribution showing the complexity of the problem, one that does not depend solely on the quality of the findings and methodology, but also involves worldviews and the way individuals interpret the meaning of phenomena such as ESP.

It is my hope that we may see future special issues of the Journal of Parapsychology devoted to issues such as theory, methodology, and studies of specific phenomena and problem areas of parapsychology.

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