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The Silva Method is a self-help and meditation program developed by José Silva. It claims to increase an individual's abilities through relaxation, development of higher brain functions, and psychic abilities such as clairvoyance.
José Silva was an electrical repairman who developed a great interest for religion, psychology, and parapsychology. He spent much time learning about hypnosis, attempting to increase his children's IQ. After experimenting and being convinced of his daughter's sudden clairvoyance, Silva decided to learn more about the development of psychic abilities.
The technique aims to reach and sustain a state of mental functioning, called alpha state, where brainwave frequency is seven to fourteen Hz.:p19-20 Daydreaming and the transition to sleeping are alpha states.:p19-20
Silva claimed to have developed a program that trained people to enter certain brain states of enhanced awareness. He also claimed to have developed several systematic mental processes to use while in these states allowing a person to mentally project with a specific intent. According to Silva, once the mind is projected, a person can allegedly view distant objects or locations and connect with higher intelligence for guidance. The information received by the projected mind is then said to be perceived as thoughts, images, feelings, smells, taste and sound by the mind. The information obtained in this manner can be acted upon to solve problems.
James Randi wrote that the Silva Method "claims to develop improved memory, learning ability, and paranormal powers like telepathy. Much of the course consists of 'visiting' absent persons imagined by students and performing diagnoses on them. No tests of the validity of this practice have been done; such tests are discouraged by the teachers of the system."
- Carroll, Robert Todd (2003). "Silva Method". The skeptic's dictionary. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. ISBN 0471480886. OCLC 55751218.
- Randi, James; Clarke, Arthur C. An Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes of the Occult and Supernatural. St. Martin's Griffin. Retrieved January 22, 2014.
- Silva, José (1977). the Silva Mind Control Method. New York, New York: Pocket Books. ISBN 978-0-671-73989-8.