Sensed presence and mystical experiences are predicted by suggestibility, not by the application of transcranial weak complex magnetic fields

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Sensed presence and mystical experiences are predicted by suggestibility, not by the application of transcranial weak complex magnetic fields. / Granqvist, P; Fredrikson, M; Unge, P; Hagenfeldt, A; Valind, Sven; Larhammar, D; Larsson, M.

I: Neuroscience Letters, Vol. 379, Nr. 1, 2005, s. 1-6.

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift

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Granqvist, P ; Fredrikson, M ; Unge, P ; Hagenfeldt, A ; Valind, Sven ; Larhammar, D ; Larsson, M. / Sensed presence and mystical experiences are predicted by suggestibility, not by the application of transcranial weak complex magnetic fields. I: Neuroscience Letters. 2005 ; Vol. 379, Nr. 1. s. 1-6.

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Sensed presence and mystical experiences are predicted by suggestibility, not by the application of transcranial weak complex magnetic fields

AU - Granqvist, P

AU - Fredrikson, M

AU - Unge, P

AU - Hagenfeldt, A

AU - Valind, Sven

AU - Larhammar, D

AU - Larsson, M

PY - 2005

Y1 - 2005

N2 - Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) with weak (micro Tesla) complex waveform fields have been claimed to evoke the sensed presence of a sentient being in up to 80% in the general population. These findings have had a questionable neurophysiological foundation as the fields are approximately six orders of magnitude weaker than ordinary TMS fields. Also, no independent replication has been reported. To replicate and extend previous findings, we performed a double-blind experiment (N = 89), with a sham-field control group. Personality characteristics indicating suggestibility (absorption, signs of abnormal temporal lobe activity, and a "new age"-life-style orientation) were used as predictors. Sensed presence, mystical, and other somatosensory experiences previously reported from the magnetic field stimulation were outcome measures. We found no evidence for any effects of the magnetic fields, neither in the entire group, nor in individuals high in suggestibility. Because the personality characteristics significantly predicted outcomes, suggestibility may account for previously reported effects. Our results strongly question the earlier claims of experiential effects of weak magnetic fields.

AB - Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) with weak (micro Tesla) complex waveform fields have been claimed to evoke the sensed presence of a sentient being in up to 80% in the general population. These findings have had a questionable neurophysiological foundation as the fields are approximately six orders of magnitude weaker than ordinary TMS fields. Also, no independent replication has been reported. To replicate and extend previous findings, we performed a double-blind experiment (N = 89), with a sham-field control group. Personality characteristics indicating suggestibility (absorption, signs of abnormal temporal lobe activity, and a "new age"-life-style orientation) were used as predictors. Sensed presence, mystical, and other somatosensory experiences previously reported from the magnetic field stimulation were outcome measures. We found no evidence for any effects of the magnetic fields, neither in the entire group, nor in individuals high in suggestibility. Because the personality characteristics significantly predicted outcomes, suggestibility may account for previously reported effects. Our results strongly question the earlier claims of experiential effects of weak magnetic fields.

KW - mystical experiences

KW - magnetic fields

KW - sensed presence

KW - suggestibility

U2 - 10.1016/j.neulet.2004.10.057

DO - 10.1016/j.neulet.2004.10.057

M3 - Article

VL - 379

SP - 1

EP - 6

JO - Neuroscience Letters

JF - Neuroscience Letters

SN - 0304-3940

IS - 1

ER -