Einstein and ESP: Organized "Skepticism" as a Historical Aberration
Little known fact: Upton Sinclair, renewed author of The Jungle, wrote a book about his experiments with telepathy between him and his wife called Mental Radio. Even less known: the man who wrote the introduction to the German edition of the book was Albert Einstein. You may have heard of him.
JL have read the book of Upton Sinclair with great interest and am convinced that the same deserves the most earnest consid- eration, not only of the laity, but also of the psychologists by profession. The results of the telepathic experiments carefully and plainly set forth in this book stand surely far beyond those which a nature investigator holds to be thinkable. On the other hand, it is out of the question in the case of so conscientious an observer and writer as Upton Sinclair that he is carrying on a conscious deception of the reading world; his good faith and dependability are not to be doubted. So if somehow the facts here set forth rest not upon telepathy, but upon some unconscious hypnotic influence from person to person, this also would be of high psychological interest. In no case should the psychologically interested circles pass over this book heedlessly. [signed] A. EINSTEIN May 23, 1930
The organized "skeptic" movement, many people do not realize, is a recent historical aberration, and mainstream science has only become ideologically hostile to investigations of anomalous or paranormal phenomena in the past few decades. Don't take my word for it: read some history. Real science is not afraid to apply its methods to subjects that make some people uncomfortable. That is actually how science is supposed to function—by challenging its assumptions and not sweeping outlying data under the rug.
I don't know of any other ideology that has turned so many smart, decent people into angry, self-righteous fundamentalists about things they've never taken a moment to actively study—and things that have been such a huge part of the human experience and narrative for as long as we've existed. It's bizarre, and I'm confident we'll get past it. We're too smart as a species to stay stuck in willful ignorance about the immense spectrum of our consciousness.