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'It's a Friday afternoon and you're sitting
in a small dark room at Edinburgh university.
All you can see is a haze of pink light.
All you can hear is a gentle hissing.
And somewhere, someone is sending you a psychic message ....'
This is just a part of any everyday routine experiment
for professor Robert Morris
who probably has one of the most fascinating jobs in the world.
He is director of the Koestler parapsychology unit -
Britain's very own X-Files laboratory
- and Britain's leading investigator of the paranormal.
For the past 10 years what they have been attempting to
do is to conduct a series of paranormal experiments,
in search of scientific evidence to finally prove
or disprove whether some human beings posses Extra-Sensory perception (ESP).
Morris and his team have devised a range of rigorous tests for ESP ability
since they began back in the late 1980s and they've produced some startling results.
For example, the proportion of people able to select
one picture from several that has been telepathically 'beamed"
to them was 48% - almost twice the rate expected.
The odds against doing this by fluke alone are less than one in 39 million.
But under no circumstances do orthodox scientist
appear prepared to take parapsychology seriously just yet.
Why is that? Because, in fact, most scientists believe that any explanation -
fluke, error, even fraud - is more plausible than the reality of ESP.
'In situations like this,' says professor Lewis Wolpert of London university.
'I think we must follow the philosopher David Hume,
who said that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.'
Morris and his colleagues fully accepted this,
and their strategy for convincing sceptics was
neatly summed up by the writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle:
'When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains,
however improbable, must be the truth.'