This holiday season when you’re posing for a photograph with the family, perhaps you should make an attempt to take a couple of pictures outside of the camera.  Think it’s impossible?  The photograph at left was taken in a closed room without windows.  Though the street, and cars within were never identified, they were certainly nowhere near the institute where the photograph was taken.

To place your thoughts onto film is called “Nensha,” or “Thoughtography.”  Of course though the concept has been around since 1913 it is still little known in most paranormal circles.  Some will recognize the phenomenon from the movie “The Ring,” but few know it actually has happened several times throughout recent history.

Quite literally Nensha means “spirit photography,” which is an interesting divide between Eastern and Western parapsychologists.  Tomokichi Fukurai is the first documented scientist to attempt to capture Nensha in a controlled environment.  His subject was a well known clairvoyant named Chizuko Mifune.  Unfortunately, their experiments were highly controversial and Mifune was thought by skeptics to be a charlatan.  Despite this, one public experiment they had performed involved Mifune reading letters written within envelopes before astonished audiences.  Later, Mifune’s experiments would be retold as legend in the Japanese horror film “Ringu” which would recast her abilities in a much different light.

Another example of Thoughtography, and perhaps the best known name attached to the phenomenon is Uri Geller, the famed psychic famous for his telepathic spoon bending abilities and several other psychic and paranormal powers.  Geller allegedly found it easy to perform this paranormal feat with a 35 mm camera and film, but some are considering this highly contentious as skeptics say Geller is merely a talented stage magician.  Nonetheless, he is perhaps the most well known and prolific psychic to have performed the feat.

The most incredible feat, however, of thoughtography is likely Ted Serios who, in the 1960s brought the phenomenon over to The West.  Thinking through a device he called a “gizmo” (actually  a rolled up tube of paper) he would project his thoughts in an alcohol induced state into a Polaroid camera which would then have Serios’ thoughts burned onto it.  Incredibly, the pictures were not carbon copies of actual photographs as would be expected in a hoax, but rather imperfect mixed up images much like how we would expect a thought to look on film.  Words Serios couldn’t spell were misspelled in his memory, complex parts of machinery were simply chaotic blurs, people he knew would appear on the bodies of people he didn’t know and vice versa.  It is this imperfection that suggest Serios wasn’t simply faking the images by using photographs he had taken somehow before.

Perhaps the concept of Thoughtography is so unnerving because it is actual physical evidence of the barrier between the mind and the physical world being tripped by something other than the body.  To project the mind onto film seems to be an incredible feat of mental prowess.  And if one could make a photograph of their own mind, then is it not possible to take the images from our minds as well and project them onto film?