PerceptionThere are five traditional senses: sight, taste, smell, hearing and touch these have always been the way in which we have experienced our world. Extrasensory perception or ESP is information gained from beyond these five senses directly in the mind. Psychic abilities such as telepathy and clairvoyance are described as being extrasensory perceptions. These fall in to two types; precognition and retro cognition. Precognition is the ability to see something before it has happened where as retro cognition is the ability to see things that have happened in the past. These are often called the sixth sense or have been known as English idioms as gut instinct or a hunch.

Parapsychology is a term used to study the psychic paranormal phenomena, one of which includes ESP. The term was first used in 1889 by the German Philosopher Max Dessoir, para means “alongside”. A person who performs psychic research is called a parapsychologist, one of the most famous was J.B Rhine who founded the parapsychology lab at Duke University and carried out a vast amount of research in to the field in the 20th century. One of his most famous tests used a deck of 25 cards (called Zener Cards) of which there were five different symbols: a square, circle, cross, star and wave. A random selection would be chosen and the user would have to see if they could guess what the symbol was. The statistical chance of guessing the right card would be 20% and those that could consistently get a higher percentage of correct cards were said to have extrasensory perception.

It is believed that everyone has extrasensory perception to some degree however very few have it to a really high level. The feelings that somebody with ESP would have would include the sense that something specific would be about to happen, this can be felt as an anxiety. More developed ESP can distinguish if it will be a good or a bad thing or the “direction” of the feeling, to whom it is going to happen. This is can be described as a strong gut feeling, beyond this people with high level ESP are able to see or hear signs such as dreams. While the type or strength can vary greatly so can its unpredictability. These senses can emerge at any time, even when we have not sensed anything like them before. If you believe you have had an extrasensory experience where a strong feeling has come true, it is nothing to be scared of. While we may not all have strong psychic or clairvoyant abilities we may all experience ESP at some time in our lives. If you do get this “gut feeling” the best advice is to follow it with a rational mind, it may be leading you down a more positive path.