Mentalism & stuff...

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Adrian Tugui, May 1, 2012.

  1. Hello theory11 comunity,

    Recently i started to train myself in the mentalism part of magic and i'm kinda stuck.
    I found some good stuff like the "This is Mentalism" DVD series by Rich Ferguson and other little stuff here and there, but i also encounter lots of other kind of mentalism like guessing people's birthdays and things like this.

    The point of this thread is: I would like you guys to give me some names of good mentalism tricks/DVDs.
    I would also like you guys to give me some names of good methods of forcing words/numbers/objects/anything, but please don't point me to obvious things like "Think of a number, now substract the oposite of it, now add it to something, now substract again and you get 1089. This is a totally random number!".

    Thank you very much for your help !
  2. There is a difference between mental magic and mentalism. Mental magic is magic with a mentalism based presentation - mind reading a forced card, B. Smith's Frequency using a dual attention patter, etc. Mentalism is the exploration of the powers of the mind (or as is more recently in vogue the powers of pseudo-science like NLP or reading body movements). So there are not "mentalism tricks" -- that would be mental magic.

    As to your question of getting a number of ways to force "anything" -- it really depends on why you want to force it. If it is to just force something so you can guess it -- check out Mark Wilson's Complete Course for the magician's force. Anything else depends on the routine. In real mentalism, there are no sure fire forces, rather you have a good percentage chance with a number of "outs."

    If you are looking for more mental magic, check out This is Mentalism 2 and Boondock Mental. Mark Wilson's book has some great stuff -- I often use the Tic Tac Toe effect for children's shows.

    If you are looking into mentalism, you will need to get books. Start with Anneman's Practical Mental Magic or Fulves' Self Working Mental Magic. Then on to 13 Steps. Then check back because those three should take you a year to master.

    Also, check out Alex's (Steerpike) blog HERE and Craig Browning's e-Book HERE.
  3. Leave the DVDs alone and actually learn the basics. So as to get a rounded overview you might want to look at this FREE PDF and from there, pick-up the primary foundation tools; 13 Steps to Mentalism by Corinda and Annemann's Practical Mental Magic.

    UNDERSTAND that Mentalism is a kindred art form to magic and not one in the same and that 90% of what you see people doing now days under the header of being "Mentalism" AIN'T! It's either mislabeled Bizarre Magick or what we call Mental Magic; routines that are obviously tricks even to the mind of the laity. Mental Magic is far more commercial because it is seen as "safe" simply because it looks like a TRICK whereas Mentalism, when executed properly, leaves the observer with no sense of logical explanation, even the trained mind can be seriously fooled when faced by a solid student of mentalism

    There are two chief schools of thought within this arena as well; the Older (original) mode of approaching Mentalism leaned heavily on the esoteric with many acts being billed as demonstrations in Telepathy or Clairvoyance, etc. By the mid-20th Century the antics of Joseph Dunninger took route giving us the first phase of Modern Mentalism which gave us a more analytical sense of perspective. Though this had existed for a great number of years, it would be Dunninger that would take the idea into the modern era followed by Kreskin who seriously commercialized the approach under the guise of being a Paranormal Researcher.

    With the advent of David Blaine & Criss Angel in the mid-1990's Mentalism was quickly bastardized so as to include a huge amount of Bizarre Magick that was mis-labeled as such -- Stigmata being a prime example -- but then the real insult is when young people refer to David Copperfield as being one of the greatest "Mentalists" in history . . . "sigh"

    Shortly after Blaine & Angel hit the scene Derren Brown surfaced in the U.K. and added the jaded elitism that so common of the Brits when it comes to supposed intellectual superiority and the imposition of "rationalism". While Brown was the first to slap the believer in the face and in essence mock them via his demonstrations, he was certainly the new example of such; Penn & Teller (Penn specifically) being the poster kids of this style of abuse and public insult or as some of us look at it, the Evangelists of Atheism. The promotion of an attitude and approach that is costing the whole of magic presently, when it comes to public trust and general public image. While you may not have a sense of personal spirituality you may want to look at the fact that you're the minority and it's kind of dumb to piss in the pool in such a case.

    This "New School" of Mentalism sacrifices many of the proven tools that have been used within the industry for decades, such as Home PSI Parties, working Lectures & Workshops, and most especially the act of doing Readings. Quite boldly people in this mode of thought have stated that their agenda is to do away with the more esoteric ties the craft has known over the past 130 ish it's been around. Which means they wish to neuter the art and make it nothing more than magic tricks; a for certain opposite from where Mentalism has been for a very long time, the chief psychological dynamic of Mentalism being to invoke belief vs. suspension of belief such as we find in traditional magic.

    BTW. . . I'm one of the few characters in today's Mentalism world that will give you this better rounded sense of perspective. Not because I'm the only one that sees things in said manner but because I'm one of the few that's willing to be the paddle boy, the others having grown sick & tired of the constant harassment and arguments offered by those that simply don't get it.
  4. Thank you so far for your responses. Now i understand the difference between mentalism and mental magic and i can say that mental magic is what i really wanna know. I'm just 17 years old and i have to finish school and stuff before i can learn something like true mentalism ( as it seems from the description above ) so i just want some "mental magic" tricks. You know.. different applications for the one ahead principle and other stuff like this.

    As far as "forcing anything" goes, I want to force anything in order to guess it for a mental magic trick. I want some clever ways to force words from books or other written material laying around. Again, i don't want something like "Think of a number, now multiply it by 2, add 10, divide by 2, substract your initial number and you're left with 5".
  5. Jay Sankey's Hemispheres is a great DVD on Mental Magic. I highly recommend it, in my opinion one of Sankeys best DVDs
  6. I'd just like to second RealityOne's recommendations. I dip in and out of mentalism and my go to books are Corrinda's 13 Steps to Mentalism, and Anneman's Practical Mental Magic. Richard Osterlind has also made a DVD of 13 Steps, but it's pricey!

    You'd also do well to develop a sense of humour so that, in the event of a public discussion resulting in everyone with whom you share a nationality being branded commonly jaded and elitist for a projected presumption of intellectual superiority, you can appreciate the irony of that statement and dismiss it quite legitimately as blatant nonsense; a hopeless manifestation of latent xenophobia informed by a pernicious discontent.
  7. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! I love this post!
  8. Check out Rich Ferguson's Tagged - it has a lot of good methods even if you don't make the word appear on the spectator's arm. Also, check out Nate Kranzo's Diction - it isn't a force, but you know the word or sentence on the selected page (I saw Nate perform this with two books, the dictionary and a book called Whoogles).
  9. I would check out some of Richard Osterlind's stuff and Banachek's if you are really serious about moving forward in mentalism :)
  10. #11 RealityOne, May 1, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2012
    I don't have any of the Osterland materials, but would advise against getting Banachek's Psychological Subtleties series until you have a strong understanding of the basics which includes performance. I think the best progression is Anneman's PMM, Fulves' SWMM, Cassidy's Fundamentals, Corinada's 13 Steps and then Banacheck's Psychological Subtleties.
  11. It is easy to be a magician and think that the only way to do a prediction of something is to force it. This can be very effective but just realize that there are other things out there. Multiple outs, psychological forces, suggestibility and even just guessing can be effective. Just make sure you're not limiting yourself to the types of methods you already know :)
  12. get banacheks books, they helped me so much with mentalism
  13. As i realise that you guys here know a lot about a lot and i really found a place with informed people willing to help, from now on i will ask you certain things so you can tell me exactly what i'm looking for.

    I would like you to give me names of book tests. The best you know. Oh.. one more thing. I'm from Romania and here we don't really have access to books about magic and stuff. Tricks that i can buy and watch on my PC would be great.
  14. Is this an attempt to goat me?

    First of all, I don't consider myself an "elitist" on any level, just someone that is passionate about the path I'm involved with and as such, something I want to see people do justice to vs. falling back on their magician's thinking and habits as well as the limitations New School thinking has given Mentalism.

    Ady, at your age learning the "basics" is critical if you think you may someday wish to move deeper into actual Mentalism work. I was already doing Readings & Dowsing type work by the time I was your age even though I wasn't focusing too much on Mentalism . . . didn't really start serious study of it until I was in my early 20's.

    Learning and developing the basics skill-sets however while young will insure you are ready in the future. If you want some "tricks" then think on it this way; if you master Secret Writing techniques, Billets and Muscle Reading over the next few years, you can do anything! You don't need to drop big money or even $20.00 on a new effect because you'll already have the three primary methods for at least replicating the things you see advertised. Develop a handful of solid force techniques followed by some Psychological Forces and you'll be ready for a career.

    Osterlind is a Magician that over-lays a Mentalists veneer to things. I'm not being negative just pointing out the truth here. Larry Becker does the same thing but unlike Osterlind, admits that what he does is more akin to Mental Magic vs. Mentalism. Of Osterlind's material I think his video series on Practical Mental Magic is one of the more valuable when it comes to learning off a CD. I've not seen his series based on Corinda but have heard good things about it but similarly, much of what would be found on those disc would probably parallel Lee Earle's old Teach-In series on the Swami Gimmick, Billets, Center Tear, Q&A, etc.

    My point is that one should take a slow and thorough path when learning something rather than running out and (in this case) buying a bunch of tricks just to be another clone; another "kid" doing the same exact material all the other kids are doing. By learning the foundation material you will be able to run circles around those clones for about the same level of financial investment when it comes to a single trick. At 17 I doubt you have the financial resources to keep throwing money at random things, so think about what I'm saying here.

    Regardless. . . I hope you the best.
  15. I really understand what your point is Craig, but right now I can't really do what I want ( regarding my training in magic ). You see... It's different for everyone. For me is the fact that my day begins at 7:00 AM, I go to school, I come back at 14:00 PM, and till 'bout 23:00 all I do is study for the next day and maybe spend an hour or two with my friends. I'm not really the nerdy style, studying all day long, but I have to right now because Romania is f*cked up and they ask us to learn all that crappy stuff. I'm really looking forward to finishing school so I can start doing what I really want to. 'Till then, all I can do is just entertain my friends with "tricks".
  16. Ady:

    I think you are taking the right approach. A lot of people will go out and get tons of stuff and then never use it because they aren't ready or don't have the time to commit to really learn it. We're all not going to be professionals. There is nothing wrong with learning some fun effects and using them to entertain your friends.

    With that in mind, I'll repeat my earlier recommendations. For book tests, Tagged by Rich Ferguson (multiple ways to force a word in addition to the method he teaches on This is Mentalism) and Diction by Nate Kranzo (I don't think this is available as a download). For mental magic -- This is Mentalism 2 by Rich Ferguson and Boondock Mental by Nate Kranzo.
  17. Craig, this is offensive,
    This comment is what earned you this comment.

    "You'd also do well to develop a sense of humour so that, in the event of a public discussion resulting in everyone with whom you share a nationality being branded commonly jaded and elitist for a projected presumption of intellectual superiority, you can appreciate the irony of that statement and dismiss it quite legitimately as blatant nonsense; a hopeless manifestation of latent xenophobia informed by a pernicious discontent"

    We all understand that you are very knowledgeable in your field and that you have been around the block. This comment was inappropriate though.
  18. Guys, Corinda isn't newb material. Corinda is a definitive work, sure, but it's not a light read by any means. He's much better off cutting his teeth on Osterlind or This Is Mentalism.
  19. I know what you're saying goatears, but after a decade + dealing with UK forms I've come to the conclusion that a good majority of Brit Magicians think their stuff don't stink and likewise believe that their plagiarized materials are superior to what the original sources have produced. Granted, this latter issue hasn't been pushed significantly because most of what's being regurgitated stems from older materials that are being "revisited" and given a new coat of paint. Then again, some of the stuff that's come out from across the pond echoes insights and thoughts that were originally shared under exclusive and limited conditions without so much as a mention.

    I have some very dear friends from the UK, I know they aren't a bunch of snot-heads, but at the same time twice burnt by the UK Magic Community (the only communities I've had problems with outside the Cafe, mind you) makes one a tad reluctant when it comes to making kind comment; my experiences haven't been so great when it comes to said groups. Sorry if my views are insulting to you (and whomever else) but when I find something that waddles like a duck, quacks like a duck and swims like a duck I must assume the greater majority of ducks have the same type of disposition.

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