Thinking Outside the Box – and the Brain

While I prefer not to make judgments about thinkers (after all, we all see the world through our own culture, experience and education) occasionally I feel compelled to highlight some of the unimaginative, sloppy or just plain lazy thinking that sometimes passes for intelligent discourse on this important subject.

Michio Kaku is a chronic offender in this area, which is rather surprising given that his entire career is devoted to imagining science-based futures. Here’s what he says about telepathy in his book “The Future of the Mind”.

True telepathy, found in science-fiction and fantasy novels, is not possible without outside assistance. As we know, the brain is electrical. In general, anytime an electron is accelerated, it gives off electromagnetic radiation. The same holds true for electrons oscillating inside the brain, which broadcasts radio waves. But these signals are too faint to be detected by others, and even if we could perceive these radio waves, it would be difficult to make sense of them. Evolution has not given us the ability to decipher this collection of random radio signals, but computers can.

The question that I pose is why Kaku has not bothered to do even a simple Google search on the evidence for telepathy? If he had, he would know that there is – in the very least – a compelling body of evidence for its existence, stretching over a century. Certainly, this is not evidence for people sitting down and talking to each other via their minds. It is, nonetheless, evidence that information passes from mind to mind non-locally.

Part of the answer to my previous question lies in the title of Kaku’s book: “The Future of the Mind”. Note the use of the singular form of “future”, as opposed to futures. For Kaku there is only one future of the mind, and it is based on simple, linear extrapolation of current data and models of thinking.

Having addressed the lazy aspect of Kaku's thoughts on telepathy, let’s move on to his lack of imagination, which is astounding. Research gleaned from parapsychology strongly suggests that the extended mind operates beyond our commonly accepted models of space and time (but not necessarily non-locality in quantum physics). Knowing is immediate regardless of distance, and there are EEG correlation experiments which suggest that projected thought may even travel backwards through time (which in itself does not violate relativity theory). This suggests that the mechanism is not one of the four known forces of nature (including radio waves).

As an imaginative futurist, Kaku should, at the very least, be able to question the assumptions of the current dominant paradigm and mainstream scientific worldview. He should be aware enough of the large body of research into the area, and he should be willing to consider alternatives to current conservative thinking. And his Ivy-league-educated future mind should be able to consider the possibility that the electrical aspects of neurophysiology may not comprise the totality (or basis) of consciousness. Further mind-beyond-the-skull may not operate with the assistance of radio waves. But alas, these things appear to be beyond his capacities – or his motivations.

Whatever your take on the idea of telepathy, one thing is certain: no genuine understanding of thinking beyond the brain is going to occur without thinking outside the box.

This is a short extract from Marcus T Anthony's upcoming book “The Great Psi Shift”.

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11 Reader Comments

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  1.' Jeff says:

    Your piece attacking Dr Kaku would be so much more fathomable had you not been so venomous. I will give you your free will and suggest you tone down your prose, especially when it comes to denouncing a legend. You have some good points. It’s just that we all could use a dose of tact at times.

  2. Jeff, you have misread the tone of the article. The article is critical, not venomous. I can assure you that I both like and respect Kaku – and his recent book.

    This is simply the way critique works. I’m sure Kaku would be far less offended than you. I have spoken to him personally, and once presented at the same conference as him. There is no need to take these debates personally, when nothing personal is intended. His take on telepathy is lazy and unimaginative. That’s my argument. simple.

  3. When your mind chocked with – electromagnetic waves it forces you to jump out of box of the normal flow.

    It try to create a new trend.

    This trend when it’s find acceptable to others will become a pathway for others to follow.

    Start them

    Frank Capra

  4. The truth will be a guiding factor
    Not your attachment

  5. Robert Smith Robert Smith says:

    scientists of his era probably do not understand that in the the 5th dimension the rules and possibilities are very different!!

  6. brain games…spooning and um cranial massage, please.

  7. Erik Albert Erik Albert says:

    Thought is not necessarily just a local event, being it a direct consequence of consciousness, a superlayer. Language, however, is always local, and just a tool for the brain to try an interpret reality.

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