Re: Rupert Sheldrake completely loses it

Ian Goddard (
Tue, 19 May 1998 19:24:08 -0400

At 01:33 PM 5/19/98 -0700, you wrote:

>Sheldrake's idea of morphic resonance always seemed almost certainly wrong
>to me, but at lest testable. But with the latest Sheldrake news about
>psychic dogs, it's getting hard to take him seriously at all...
>Here's the URL for those interested in Sheldrake:

IAN: I saw something on TV about this. A dog owner
went with film crew to a shopping center and another
crew stayed at home with the dog. The owner chose a
random time to return. At the moment that she did,
the dog at home woke up and, tail wagging, ran to
the window, looking out expectantly, but the owner
was still a good 10 minutes away from home, so it
could not have been smell, sight, or sound clues.
They said that that dog always reacted like that.

The studies cited in the Nando article Max cites
seem pretty lame in that they simply asked owners
if this happened to their pets. That's totally un-
scientific and worthless in my mind. But the arti-
cle did cite some "laboratory-type" experiments:

They involve setting up video cameras in the homes of pet owners to
record animals' activities while their owners are away. Then they ask
owners to return home at unpredictable times -- by taxi and not their
own car. Reviewing this evidence, he claims that while some dogs are
stripped of their psychic powers -- most are not.
IAN: Seems he's already concluded they're psychic.
"The most extraordinary examples," he explained, "have been dogs who
begin to get excited when their owners are about to get on an airplane
to fly home from thousands of miles away."

I don't think we should write this off just
like that. It stokes my curiosity... What if?
I'd think that some rigid tests could be set
up that would give us some reliable answers.