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I did some tests with spoon bending, and found that almost any standard cutlery can be bent through moderate force into pretzels.

Bent spoon bowls are quite impressive though -- I was not able to accomplish that through force, and I'm not weak. . .

sorry that last comment was my alter ego, Dirk Gently. . .

I have read recently that there is a person that puts on seminars and everyone gets to bend a spoon and other objects. And you can bring you own or he furnishes them. he buys them at yard sales.

In this article the participant stated only about 30% of the people could actually bend spoons with their minds.

I don’t think they were allowed to touch the spoons only to hold spoon with one hand and that may explain how this lady and most participants bent their spoons.

It appears that groups are more successful and emotions appear to play a part in being able to bend spoons. Emphasis on appears.

This person I found on the Internet that has participants bend spoons and there were many others listed on the net. http://www.dicksutphen.com/html/bendmetal.html

There may be a very scientific and materialistic explanation for this. I would think one should proceed with caution. Kind of like walking on the hot coals thing that made a lot of money for the so called positive thinking gurus and others.

This "phenomenon" seems really flaky to me. I've heard Radin's story about the bent spoon bowl, but it doesn't convince me of anything. It's like the experiments with random number generators or Sheldrake's telephone experiment; there may be a statistically significant result but the studies are too vapid to have anything of intellectual interest.

Hey Matthew - the Dirk Gently books are favourites of mine. Nice to see a kindred spirit.

Neal: guess it's how you define 'intellectual interest'...I find anything which doesn't seem to fit in with our current view of reality as 'interesting'. I guess by your terms, that means I'm not an intellectual? Perhaps that was your intent...
;)

Kind regards,
Greg

Greg,

I think instead he was suggesting not only that we are not intellectual, but vapid to boot!

Perhaps it's time to start practicing "valley girl". Gag me with a spoon!

I've been interested in the subject for years. Just last year I finally had success at it. Using all my might I couldn't even put the slightest bend in the spoon but somehow using the technique I read about I got it to bend quite significantly. I'm not at all convinced it's fake or a trick. Unless I can somehow trick myself into becoming Hercules and performing feats that draw stares of horror and disgust from everyone around me I don't see what other explanation there could be.

Neal:

"...too vapid to have anything of intellectual interest."

I wonder what other small effects you would have dismissed as too vapid. I can see you now: "Hey, Newton, the apple fell, Big deal. They always fall. Doesn't mean a thing."

" using the technique I read about I got it to bend quite significantly"

Please, if possible, do share!

I'm sorry. That was so long ago that I do not recall from where I read it.

I remember when the Geller craze was at its hight all sorts of people found they could bend metal stuff. I saw an experiment set up by some Imperial College scientists on TV where a child bent a spoon inside a sealed glass tube without even touching the tube. Geller caused the whole craze to subside by losing a lawsuit against James Randi and by being caught cheating a few times.

Take a look at http://www.fork-you.com/ for a video of an Aussie gal turning a fork into a pretzel. She sells the stuff as jewelry. How-to instructions on the website.

In the video it appeared that she was using a fair amount of strength, and the fork looked pretty flimsy to begin with. I do think spoon bending is a legitimate phenomenon, but for it to be convincing to an observer, there has to be minimal pressure applied to the spoon (or fork). It should really bend mostly by itself, with just light rubbing.

Here's Radin's story in case anyone hasn't read it:

http://www.deanradin.com/spoon.htm

Impressive, I think

As I think I stated in an earlier post, I attended a spoon-bending demonstration several years ago. There were about 150 people there -- all Spiritualists -- and about 100 of them succeeded in bending the spoons by mind, not muscle. In some cases, the prongs on forks rolled up tightly. I was one of the failures. However, my wife, who has no real interest in this type of thing and was just accompanying me because she had nothing else to do, succeeded. We still have the spoon. The bend is not the same as one would expect if applying muscle power to it, i.e, a sharp crease in the metal. Rather, it is a curved "bend." My wife didn't even realize it was happening when it happened. She was simply rubbing her fingers gently over the spoon as instruced and was talking to the person next to her, saying how ridiculous it all was. Then, she looked at the spoon and it was folded in half.

When I first heard of the parties, a year or so ago, I was skeptical. But then I saw accounts, by people I've come to respect as credible, who've been to the gatherings and say it works. I still haven't been to a spoon-bending, and I've tried it on my own to no avail, but I'm not as skeptical as I was, since reading more about it and reading more personal accounts. What interested me most about the events I read of was that they prefer to have at least some children present, because kids exude a kind of energy that's necessary to get things going. In Feng Shui books I've read that children have a lot of yang chi, and indeed whenever I'm around kids I feel a big difference in the atmosphere. (I don't have kids, so maybe I notice the contrast more than people who do.) What I notice is that I'm tired afterward, not tired in the way I am after working hard or being under stress, but in the same way that I tire after a day in the sun or at the beach.

The process also involves having participants shout, "Bend!" My understanding is that the shouting isn't intended to bend the spoon, but to get the person's yang energy, or whatever is at work, moving and active.

Again, I don't know firsthand if it works, but I'm not as skeptical as I once was about it since reading more, and it intrigues me. I found this site with instructions, in case anyone wants to try it. Maybe with a group or with children present it will work for someone else.

http://www.fork-you.com/

I see now that someone else already provided that link. Sorry I posted that a second time, and thanks for the Dean Radin link. I just wanted to add that another reason I've read of for having a lot of people, and possibly children present, is in order to distract participants from focusing too hard, that one needs to unfocus just a little to get it to work. Who knows? Sorry for the multiple comments.

Interesting, the bit about how the metal doesn't go soft until you 'forget' what you're doing. Reminds me of this article I'd read some time ago - http://www.meru.org/carpass.html

Thanks to Mark L and Barbara for posting those links to fork-you.com. I read through her instructions, and found they were nearly identical to the instructions I received in my own experience with the church group in 1991. The ball of energy above your head, coming in through your forhead, and down your arm was the same, but the ball of energy was described there as the power of God. I think having these instructions on this site has given me confidence to be able to try it again with a few of my friends here in a group.

Regarding Michael Prescott's comment that in the video on the fork-you site, it looks like light-weight cutlery--it looks that way, but toward the end where you are shown all the marks on the back of the cutlery, you can see that it is NOT thin or light-weight, as those marks are only put onto heavy-weight good-quality cutlery (women generally know about this more than men, as they are more into silverware from wedding registries and the like). Anyway, that is why these marks are being shown right into the camera for viewers.

Mary Mimouna (author of above article)

Thanks to Darryn for publishing the Dean Radin link, and no I had not read it. My whole reason for sending my article to Michael Prescott was that after coming across this blog, I went back to read some of the earlier entries, and found his entry on spoon bending. I never had a chance to discuss this with anyone who knew anything about it before. I wasn't able to find these links myself, so much appreciate what others have shared, as it helps me validate my experience to myself!

Mary Mimouna (article author)

I hadn't realized that the emblem on the fork meant that it was high-quality metal. In that case, the woman's ability to manipulate it into a tight spiral is impressive - although a skeptic could say that it was pre-treated with some sort of chemical.

I guess the old saying is true: When you come to a fork in the road - bend it!

A description of "PK parties" and a video of a guy pulling a spoon apart is at http://www.jackhouck.com/pk.shtml I hope convicts in jails, with lots of time on their hands, don't see this. :-)

Thanks, Mark, that's a REALLY interesting link, and thanks for posting it! It's a site I'll continue to follow.

Mary Mimouna

For anyone reading this thread, I want to add that the above link, again here:

http://www.jackhouck.com/pk.shtml

talks about an aeronautical engineer's many years of research into this and other phenomena, including the 8,500 people he claims have attended his "Psychokinesis Parties," at which he was able to bend steel rods that he could not ordinarily bend with all of his normal strength.

Mary Mimouna

One of my best friends from Eastern Europe sent me a private e-mail response to this article a couple weeks ago, and I wanted to share her comments here. Based on Jack Houck's experiences (see above comment), I'm sort of being converted to the view that this could actually be a scientific phenomena which just needs to be more thoroughly investigated.

Mary Mimouna

Here are my friend's comments (a very intelligent woman, although English is not her native language):

HI MARY

I JUST RED YOUR ARTICLE.IT'S INTERESTING,BUT I DON'T THINK IT IS A GOD'S WILL. I HAVE A THERAPIST FOR MY BECK PROBLEMS AND HE IS USING HIS ENERGY FOR HEALING.IF I HAVE A STOMACH PROBLEMS, MY HUSBAND IS USUALLY
PLACING HIS HAND ON IT AND PAIN IS GONE. I CAN FEEL WARMNESS ON THE TOUCHED PLACE. I ALSO REMEMBER THAT WHEN I WAS AROUND 10 MY MOM HAD A THERAPIST FROM ROMANIA WHO WAS HEALING PEOPLE WITH HIS ENERGY. MY SISTER WAS SKEPTICAL,SO,HE PLACED HER BEHIND THE DOOR AND,USING HIS ENERGY TROUGH THE CLOSED DOOR, HE MADE HER FALL DOWN. I THINK THAT WE ALL HAVE THIS ENERGY (MORE OR LESS) BUT WE DON'T KNOW HOW TO USE IT. WITH MEDITATION OR GUIDING WE CAN LEARN HOW TO DO IT, CHURCH
IS JUST USING THIS PHENOMENON TO PRICE THE GOD (THAT'S THEIR JOB).

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