Letter from Sheldrake December 12, 2007

Dear Zaquie,

Many thanks for your email. I think poverty and spirituality all seemed to be linked in some way. Generally when people become more prosperous they become less spiritual. The connection between poverty and spirituality does seem quite clear in India and it’s not confined to any particular religion. Thank you for your observations. I’m glad to hear about the results. I would be very happy to see the data from the written tests.

Please post them to me at:

Safe Journey

Dear Zaquie,

It was great to meet you. I’m excited at the idea of you being able to do more experiments in Brazil. The photo experiment works just like the staring experiment, except for the fact that the starer looks at the subjects photograph instead of the subject. The subject is in another room.

In a random series of 20 trials (for which you can use the same instructions sheets as the normal staring experiment) the looker either looks at the photo or looks at something else instead. The subject receives a signal on an intercom to indicate when a trial begins, and then sends her guess to the looker over the same intercom. I have found that this tests works best with people who know each other well, but you could try it with people who don’t know each other well and see what happens. As we discussed, it would be good if you could also try the staring experiment in a different way, where the looker either looks at the subjects neck (or back of head) or at their lower back. In each trial, the subject has to guess whether the neck or lower back was being looked at. Can they feel the difference? I hope you have a safe journey back to Brazil.

All best wishes Rupert”