A Parapsychological Association Research Endowment (PARE) grant provided funding for the research project “Spiritism in the Voice of Spiritists,” lead by Juan Corbetta, Juan Gimeno, and Fabian Savall in conjunction with the Instituto de Psicología Paranormal de Buenos Aires. The project resulted in the production of the book Cuando Hablan los Espiritus: Historias del Movimiento Kardeciano en la Argentina [When the Spirits Talk: Chronicles of the Kardecian Movement in Argentina] and the preparation of an exhibit entitled “Going for a walk with the spirits,” which was on display at the Museo Roca (Roca Museum) in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2010.

The efforts of Corbetta and his team mark the first time in Argentinian history that non-spiritist groups were invited to join spiritist associations in collaborative research. This opportunity allowed for parapsychologists to document and organizes the evidence that these Argentinian spiritist groups had amassed over the years. Corbetta and his team analyzed historical documents and objects used during séances, and interviewed spiritist authorities, members, and mediums who provided first-hand stories, memories and experiences. The team observed different kinds of séances such as mediumship development, psycho-physical intervention or “healing” séances, and “desobsessión” (healing of obsessed). 

Two books were produced. When Spirits Talk: Chronicles of the Kardecian Movement in Argentina was written by Corbetta and his team. The book contains the complete findings of the research project, including a historical overview about the birth and development of the Kardecian movement in Argentina from the eighteenth century until present day. The authors’ exploration emphasized the analysis of possible psychic phenomena in the séances and the survival evidence produced in Argentinian spiritism over the last 150 years. Corbetta and his team also obtained, through the Constancia Spiritist Association, the funding and authorization for the publication of the unpublished book Memorias de un Hombre Mediocre [Memories of a Mediocre Man: Autobiography of Cosme Mariño]. 

Both books were presented during the exhibit at Museo Roca. “Going for a walk with the spirits” communicated the history of the Kardecian movement in Argentina through the exhibition of antiques, books, and objects used in séances during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The exhibit received 2500 visitors, allowing the chance for the divergent paths, spiritist and scientific study, to reconvene after years of separation.

Funding for PARE awards was made possible through a generous donation by Dr. Gertrude Schmeidler, who was a leading researcher and educator in the field of parapsychology. The awards are administered annually by the Board of the Parapsychological Association. One or more awards is made each year to cover the direct costs of conducting scientific research. Donations to support the mission of the PA, including the funding of research initiatives, can be made by contacting Executive Director Annalisa Ventola at business@parapsych.org.

Related Links
Corbetta, Juan; Gimeno, Juan; Savall, Fabiana. El espiritismo en la voz de los espiritistas: el laboratorio metapsíquico "Dr. Gustavo Geley". E-BOLETÍN PSI. Vol.3, No.3, October 2008.

Gimeno, Juan; Corbetta, Juan; Savall, Fabiana. Transferencia anómala de información: evaluación de un grupo de mediums espíritas. E-BOLETÍN PSI. Vol.4, No.3, September 2009.

Savall, Fabiana. Un paseo con los espíritus. E-BOLETÍN PSI. Vol.6, No.1, January 2011.

Gimeno, Juan; Corbetta, Juan; Savall, Fabian. Cuando Hablan los Espiritus: Historias del Movimiento Kardeciano en la Argentina. Editorial Dunken. Buenos Aires: September 2010.

Asociación Espiritista Constancia; Mariño Cosme. Memorias de un Hobre Mediocre. Editorial Dunken. Buenos Aires: September 2010. 


Article written by Anastasia Wasko, an independent editor, author and PA volunteer. More information about Ms. Wasko can be found at www.anastasiawasko.com.