Electronic Voices: Contact with Another Dimension?
|Article Type:||Book review|
|Subject:||Books (Book reviews)|
|Author:||McAdams, Elizabeth E.|
|Publication:||Name: The Journal of Parapsychology Publisher: Parapsychology Press Audience: Academic Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Psychology and mental health Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2011 Parapsychology Press ISSN: 0022-3387|
|Issue:||Date: Spring, 2011 Source Volume: 75 Source Issue: 1|
|Topic:||NamedWork: Electronic Voices: Contact with Another Dimension? (Nonfiction work)|
|Persons:||Reviewee: Cardoso, Anabela|
ELECTRONIC VOICES: CONTACT WITH ANOTHER DIMENSION? by Anabela
Cardoso. Hampshire, UK: O-Books/John Hunt Publishing, Ltd., 2010, Pp.
236. $24.95 (paperback). ISBN 978 1 84694 363 8.
Anabela Cardoso, a high-ranking Portuguese diplomat, has written a remarkable book about instrumental transcommunication (ITC), Electronic Voices: Contact with Another Dimension? ITC refers to electronically received forms of apparent communication of unexplained origin. Although ITC phenomena include voices, images, and texts, Cardoso has focused primarily on voices. The voices state that they are deceased, and their speech often seems to come in direct response to experimenters' questions and comments. They range in length from one or two words to several sentences. Voices vary in strength and seeming gender. Some seem to lack characteristics of a human voice and some seem robotic.
Cardoso describes her three goals for the book: (1) to help readers try to receive the voices themselves; (2) to contribute to a better understanding of processes which seem to encourage reception of voices; and (3) to encourage the scientific community to study and analyze these phenomena, using sophisticated technical methods of voice analysis she says are now available.
She very effectively achieved her first goal: she describes conditions and equipment she's used over the years as she's received a tremendous number of voices. An entire chapter is devoted to details of how to prepare an environment conducive to the reception of voices.
A descriptive booklet and CD accompany the book. The CD contains a large number of voices, most in Portuguese, along with the Portuguese and English translations Cardoso has assigned to each. The 30-page booklet is extremely interesting. It includes very detailed descriptions of the setting in which the voices occurred, such as the content of researchers' conversations before reception, and content of voices received before and after the featured excerpts. The author comments on the similarity between voices she's received and those received by others around the world.
Cardoso states that one challenge in this field is that listeners may have a tendency to think they've identified a meaningful phrase out of meaningless sounds. A great many of the voices featured in the CD are quite strong and seem clearly to be saying the words ascribed to them. In most examples, the author's interpretation of a phrase is featured first, followed by the sounds as received. I thought that perhaps it might be helpful to first play a series of sounds as they were received, maybe repeating them two or three times, before there is any suggested interpretation given, of the words it might represent. That would give the reader/listener the opportunity to listen without any suggestion as to possible content. However, I learned that the author carefully considered that option and decided against it as she felt that most prospective listeners would be English-speaking, unlikely to understand Portuguese. Thus, she felt that if voices were initially presented without any interpretation, they would be just meaningless sounds to the listeners.
In addressing her second goal, she has presented several compelling ideas as to processes associated with voice reception. She has made a strong contribution to the research conversation about possible sources of the voices. She has discussed the possible importance of synergy between experimenter, equipment used, and the source of the voices. She has found that voices are easier to receive and of better quality when background noise is used. She prefers a radio's "white noise," which plays during the tape recording. She suggests that the background noise may provide an acoustic carrier from which communicators might modulate or construct their own voices. She believes that the voices captured on tape consist of electromagnetic frequencies sent into the ether by some kind of power source.
She disagrees with the so-called "psychokinesis explanation," which posits that the communications are "created" solely through the psychokinetic action of the experimenter's mind on the electronic equipment. However, she speculates that the experimenters' keen interest in listening to the voices may somehow "transfer" the "wave" so that the signal (information) it carries becomes available and audible.
Cardoso has observed that many of the voices sound as if they're being produced with great effort. She posits that the communicators seemingly behind the voices experience difficulties in providing the sounds in an understandable form. Several voices say that "this is difficult." Further,
Cardoso feels that the voices, based on the content of many, seem to have a purpose--namely to convey that life doesn't end at death and that the world can be healed by love.
But her personal theories aside, Cardoso's overriding passion is to see an unbiased investigation undertaken by scientists with the highest credentials and expertise in acoustics, electronics, and related fields. They would examine the evidence, rule out any conceivable normal explanation for the production of the voices, and supervise further reception at their origin. She emphasizes that although the phenomena can't be received on demand, they are repeated frequently around the world. Results are objective and can be subjected to scientific scrutiny. She asserts that sophisticated tools already exist for such rigorous study, including electroacoustic processing software to determine whether a voice is really there, and decoding techniques that she feels will help interpret what was said.
I certainly hope that Cardoso's overriding goal will be realized--that the scientific community will begin to take a serious look at ITC. I certainly applaud her work and highly recommend this most unique book and CD.
Cardoso's life has been dramatically affected by her years of experimenting with the voices. She says that she feels "immensely proud ... to be involved in an enterprise of unparalleled significance."
ELIZABETH E. MCADAMS
International Foundation for Survival Research
848 Ronda Mendoza, #P
Laguna Woods, CA 92637
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