Jim Callahan - Blew My Mind

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May 9, 2008
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What a waste of time. Thanks. This has been done a million times before, so it had no effect on me. I thought it was going to be something worth watching for a change.
 

Deechristopher

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I'm not sure I'm getting people's problem here - Hallowe'en is my FAVORITE time of year and the video was quite representative of the fun and trickery that should be had over the holiday!

"This video will read you mind"

Is the title, no matter what it was, it wouldn't have had any serious effect and no one would have gained in the least - I think to be honest, that the element of surprise and the controversy this video will start is a good example of thinking outside the box as far as promoting your character - It shows a polar opposite to what most people think to be Jim Callahan, while still retaining the honesty to his character.

I suggest this thread is closed as to be quite frank, I feel a bit disheartened. I contribute a lot to these forums and felt that this little snippet would bring a smile to the face of several members here over this holiday, my FAVORITE time of year, but evidently people seem to take things far to seriously!

Alas, moving on. Have a great Hallowe'en guys - I'm off to go bend some spoons for some people and then I'm going watch some films with the horror community!

DC
 

jonraiker

vp of development
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A video that definitely expresses the mystique and fun surrounding Halloween.

I think one of the main issues those in the community have with Jim Callahan is his constant contradictions as to the character he portrays. When its convenient, he claims it's an act and should be treated as such. To the rest of the general public his claims are that of sincere "abilities" - which I'm sure we both would agree, is not only outlandish but highly unethical.

Not to get too off topic, but how is that any different than the claims John Edward, James Van Praagh, Sylvia Browne, and other "paranormalists" and psychics make?

Let me know if you'd like this thread closed Dee. If not, let's chat this ish up. ;)
 

Ashrei

Elite Member
Sep 1, 2007
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I forgot about this guy for awhile... haha...
It almost blew my mind. If I hadn't seen something better just before this.
Ah... the Halloween is just around the corner, yet again. :)
 
A video that definitely expresses the mystique and fun surrounding Halloween.

I think one of the main issues those in the community have with Jim Callahan is his constant contradictions as to the character he portrays. When its convenient, he claims it's an act and should be treated as such. To the rest of the general public his claims are that of sincere "abilities" - which I'm sure we both would agree, is not only outlandish but highly unethical.

Not to get too off topic, but how is that any different than the claims John Edward, James Van Praagh, Sylvia Browne, and other "paranormalists" and psychics make?

Let me know if you'd like this thread closed Dee. If not, let's chat this ish up. ;)

Jon Raiker... You really are going to go there? This is exciting!

The character of the mentalist, the psychic, and the individual with paranormal/ supernatural abilities is a hard one to pull off in the world today. Less and less people are willing to just accept that these powers are real, and the ones that do buy into it, are disturbing. I've met a few at some Rock and Gem shows.

With that being said, however, I think it is a very difficult line to tow when you are trying to present this character. For your act to be successful you need to get your audience to believe the character, and buy into what the character says is real. However, for publicity and marketing purposes you almost feel compelled to remain in character off the set as well.

To us magicians, the "enlightened" ones; the ones that know the inner secrets of trickery, and how things are really done, we see a problem. An ethical problem with holding true to the masquerade of fantastical powers 100% of the time. Further when we see people like James Edwards or his ilk we get upset that someone is using one of our techniques to do so well, and not support our cause.

Of course, if you look at the history of magic, we weren't always showmen ourselves either. We were soothsayers, powerful wizards who could offer other worldly advice to kings, and traveling vagabonds. We were high priests, capable of bending the gods terrible powers in displays to the unfaithful. It really wasn't until the inquisition that we started to sober up our acts a bit.

So the question is, and has been since Houdini's time, Where does the line between fraud and entertainer lie?

I think the answer is in what Jim has been doing. I think if you are going to present a character like that, then certainly you need to admit that it's an act and should only be seen as entertainment, but when necessary also continue the act and character to further your own believability and success. I wouldn't call that inconsistancy, I'd call it a compermise.
 

jonraiker

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I think the answer is in what Jim has been doing. I think if you are going to present a character like that, then certainly you need to admit that it's an act and should only be seen as entertainment, but when necessary also continue the act and character to further your own believability and success. I wouldn't call that inconsistancy, I'd call it a compermise.
Great response. My problem with Jim lies in the fact that he goes out of his way to ensure that the public believes his abilities are real - even going so far as to challenging the James Randi Educational Foundation (which is absolutely ludicrous, Randi obviously being a magician "in the know" himself). Some quotes from his site:

I am a Paranormalist challenging the world's foremost and most vocal skeptic. For years it has worked the other way around quite successfully for Randi and his group.

One last thing before leaving the subject. I have two challenge presentations - one metal bending, the other the Deja-vue Experiment on the site. Both are backed up with documentation and can be verified.

I would also point out that my views on numerology still stand. Randi and his followers have yet to prove the statements wrong.


As a practicing mentalist that values ethics in performing, comments and claims like that leave an extremely awkward taste in my mouth - and it wasn't the yogurt raisins I just consumed. ;)

I don't think there's any reason, in this day in age, to make claims about your performing art that simply aren't true. It's equivalent to a popular recording artist lip-syncing on stage, unbeknownst to your audience. Although many may do it or have done it in the past, it doesn't make it anymore right or okay.

I think it would be much more ethical for Jim to refrain from making any statement regarding whether or not his abilities are genuine, and let the audience decide for themselves. On another note, we have really gotten off topic here... I'm a horrible admin.
 
Great response. My problem with Jim lies in the fact that he goes out of his way to ensure that the public believes his abilities are real - even going so far as to challenging the James Randi Educational Foundation (which is absolutely ludicrous, Randi obviously being a magician "in the know" himself). Some quotes from his site:

I am a Paranormalist challenging the world's foremost and most vocal skeptic. For years it has worked the other way around quite successfully for Randi and his group.

One last thing before leaving the subject. I have two challenge presentations - one metal bending, the other the Deja-vue Experiment on the site. Both are backed up with documentation and can be verified.

I would also point out that my views on numerology still stand. Randi and his followers have yet to prove the statements wrong.


As a practicing mentalist that values ethics in performing, comments and claims like that leave an extremely awkward taste in my mouth - and it wasn't the yogurt raisins I just consumed. ;)

I don't think there's any reason, in this day in age, to make claims about your performing art that simply aren't true. It's equivalent to a popular recording artist lip-syncing on stage, unbeknownst to your audience. Although many may do it or have done it in the past, it doesn't make it anymore right or okay.

I think it would be much more ethical for Jim to refrain from making any statement regarding whether or not his abilities are genuine, and let the audience decide for themselves. On another note, we have really gotten off topic here... I'm a horrible admin.


Yeah, I can't really defend him against that. Attacking James is like walking into a lions den with a raw stake hung around your neck. That was stupid.

This subject is of interest to me. I perform Geek, and Freak styles. I can assure you that my claims are genuine. However I also, in finding my voice and my own style have been dabbling in spirit theater, and mentalism. I'm finding myself in that misty grey area between being an entertainer and being where Jim is.

The interest is there only because I don't want to make such claims, but I haven't chosen an easy character either.
 
Sep 1, 2007
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Cornwall
for those you have yet to see it, penn and tellers bull****
episode 1. talking to the dead - all you need to view on this topic...

on a personal note, anybody who truely believes they can speak to the dead, and on the flipside, anybody who actually believes its possible/real (including the religious) i personally think should be executed in great numbers.

its people like these which set us back as a species.
 
May 9, 2008
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On the contrary, I think this aspect of spirituality and religion sets us apart from animals. Why are you so certain these things don't exist? It's impossible to know for sure. You should be more open minded, IMO. I know very sane people who have had true paranormal encounters, and I have experienced the paranormal first hand. Just because YOU haven't experienced these things does NOT mean they don't exist.

However, we shouldn't go around claiming we can talk to the dead or claim we have special powers. I'm looking forward to seeing Men Who Stare At Goats. I just read Dan Brown's "The Lost Symbol" and I enjoyed it. It takes a look at Noetic Sciences and the power of the human mind. I think there are many things yet to be discovered about the human brain, but I don't think we're quite there yet.

It's people like you, who are so closed minded that hold back the human race. You have to dream to achieve. People 50 years ago only dreamed of technology we have today, but without those dreams we'd be nowhere we are today. Things 100 years ago that looked like magic are now true sciences. Hundreds of years ago, the world was flat, and anyone who thought otherwise was crazy. People thought the universe revolved around the Earth, and anyone who thought otherwise was crazy.
 
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Feb 27, 2008
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On the contrary, I think this aspect of spirituality and religion sets us apart from animals. Why are you so certain these things don't exist? It's impossible to know for sure. You should be more open minded, IMO. I know very sane people who have had true paranormal encounters, and I have experienced the paranormal first hand. Just because YOU haven't experienced these things does NOT mean they don't exist.

However, we shouldn't go around claiming we can talk to the dead or claim we have special powers. I'm looking forward to seeing Men Who Stare At Goats. I just read Dan Brown's "The Lost Symbol" and I enjoyed it. It takes a look at Noetic Sciences and the power of the human mind. I think there are many things yet to be discovered about the human brain, but I don't think we're quite there yet.

It's people like you, who are so closed minded that hold back the human race. You have to dream to achieve. People 50 years ago only dreamed of technology we have today, but without those dreams we'd be nowhere we are today. Things 100 years ago that looked like magic are now true sciences. Hundreds of years ago, the world was flat, and anyone who thought otherwise was crazy. People thought the universe revolved around the Earth, and anyone who thought otherwise was crazy.

Also, just because penn and teller say it doesnt make it true. They choose to inform you only what they want to inform you on. And at times have very biased views.
I used to be the same way. Always thinking pure facts and science and calling everything bullcrap that had to do with meditation,spirituality,God,etc. (After I was 8 though.Younger than that I believed in everything.)
I studied the big bang(unknown to me that it was a catholics idea) cosmolgy,origins of the universe,evolution,etc. I gravitated away from religion and spirituality. Which in turn depressed me slightly but I was just "eh". And of course I gained the characteristics of the new atheists. of arrogance,and wont-hear-it attitude towards listening to other points of views and overall bad manners.
But after a few years I began to come full circle.(aside from the things ive heard and seen that are deeply frightening ) the more science I studied, the more I saw that physics became metaphysics anf numbers became imaginery numbers.
The farther you go into science, the mushier the ground gets. I started to say "wow, there is an order and a spiritual aspect to everything. To science".
(And my Aikido teacher proved to me about our own spirit and mind in sometimes painful ways)
I especially retracted from my old thoughts ever since I heard that Antony flew,the worlds most notorious atheist,had changed his mind and accepted the existence of spirituality,of a god.
 

jonraiker

vp of development
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Aug 5, 2007
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At the risk of this turning into a religious debate, I'm going to go ahead and close the thread.

Understandably, I'm partly to blame for steering us off topic. :( Anyway, back to the magic guys!
 
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