Mentalism is the art of displaying such phenomena as extra-sensory perception, telekinesis, mental telepathy, precognition, and as a medium between our world and those that have departed from it. There are several other skills that enter into this subject also, including mind reading. Although there is a difference of opinion between believers and non-believers of these phenomena, the subject remains popular. At entertainment shows across the nation and the world, mentalists continue to entertain and amaze people with their skills. Even in the private sector, there are individuals that practice these skills. Whether there are accurate or not in their skill is a matter best discussed with the people that seek out their skills.
In 1961, a book was published by Tony Corina called “13 Steps to Mentalism” It was originally published as separate chapters as a course in mentalism. Each chapter taught a separate skill to practice. Many readers of that book practiced their skills in county fairs, street-side vending, and even opened their own shops. Some are still in existence, with their children seeing and practicing the skills their parents teach. Are the skills real? Or are they like the “smoke behind the screen” used in so many magic shows? Only someone seeking these skills for entertainment or personal reasons can answer that, since science has been unable to. But all of us know that there are things on our Earth that are unexplained by all the science available to us at this time.
The 13 steps to mentalism chapters are listed as being 1) The Swami Gimmick, 2) Pencil, Lip, Sound, Muscle Reading, 3)Mnemonics and Mental Systems, 4) Predictions, 5) Blindfolds and Xrays, 6) Billets, 7) Book Tests and Supplement, 8) Two Person Telepathy, 9) Mediumistic Stunts, 10) Card Tricks, 11) Question and Answer Effects, 12) Publicity Stunts, and 13) Patter and Presentation. The names of some of the chapters would definitely give an unbeliever pause, wondering how many times they have been duped by someone professing to be “originally gifted.” Believers are given pause by the titles, since it gives the connotation that no real phenomena exists. So why is this book still popular? Because both the believers and non-believers want to investigate all of the titles in this book.
As an example, you can look up the Swami Gimmick on the internet, and learn how this piece of magic works. Articles on the other chapters are available, also. The information easily accessible on the internet punches so many holes in what the definition of what was previously called a mentalist. However, the definition is changing, according to other sources on the internet. But are they real, or more sophisticated forms of the “secrets” learned before and in the 1961 release of Tony Corina’s book?
It is up to the reader to fully investigate each subject to be fully aware of anything purchased or pursued. Whether it is religion, politics, a purchase, or entertainment, research, close observation, and the opinions of trusted people are invaluable in making life’s decisions. Hope you enjoy this 13 steps to mentalism article here.