Have you ever watched someone read someone else’s mind? Are you amazed by a person who can bend spoons and other metals? Is it weird to witness someone predict the other person’s actions? These are acts called mentalism. This article will feature information about mentalism, its history, different mentalism tricks, reveal mentalists’ secrets and techniques, and teach you how to read minds.
How to read minds
How to read minds includes unique human capabilities. These capabilities are not supernatural powers, but they are abilities that require hard work and practice. Reading minds and other mentalism categories are the art of doing illusions and tricks using the mind. It is a performing art that make tricks appear to be done using the mind.
How to read minds is different from how magic tricks are done. While both resort to tricks and illusions, they are done differently. Magic tricks are performed using sleight of hand and visual illusions, while mentalism tricks are performed using the power of the mind which involves little or no hand movements.
Mentalism techniques are very simple, but some tricks appear to be very complicated. The more difficult it appears, the more spectators believe it’s real.
The complexity of the human brain
Mentalism can also be attributed to the complexity of the human brain. The human brain is regarded as one of the most powerful, complicated machines in the universe. Although scientists have identified the parts and their functions, it is still a mystery how these parts work together to coordinate activities, develop language, make up a personality, and enable mental abilities.
Although the brain is the most powerful machine, it is amazing that it can be tricked. This might be because of the mental gaps that the brain fails to handle or process. That is why even though mentalists do not possess supernatural powers, they are still able to make mind-reading tricks appear real.
Every person’s ability to read minds
You don’t have to possess supernatural powers to be able to read minds. In fact, even a very ordinary person, who is not into mentalism or mind-reading tricks, can read minds. This is because of the sensitivity to other people’s feeling or actions.
For example, a baby cries after hours of not drinking milk. The mother interprets this as “the baby is hungry,” and eventually gives milk to the baby. Another example is that a wife sits on the couch crying in front of the television. The husband joins in and he may think that his wife is crying because of the very emotional scene she’s watching on TV. Or he may read his wife’s mind that the tears are a result of her remembering a past experience. Nonverbal language is one of the basics of how to read minds.
Early manifestation of mind reading
According to Oxford Scholarship, the early manifestation of mind reading can be observed as early as before the age of four years. Recent studies and hypotheses show that even infants can feel and read what other people are thinking or believing. In fact, a study conducted by Victoria Southgate titled “Early Manifestations of Mind Reading” discovered evidence and interpretations of the data of this new theory, which aims to understand how infants’ early mind reading affects the development of their personalities and intellectual abilities.
As the infant grows older and develops his or her mind, they improve their mind-reading skills through eavesdropping on adult conversations. They also improve their mind-reading skills through play. They practice reading the minds of their playmates, which they use for interpreting what the grownups are thinking or feeling.
This development of mind-reading skills is seamless. But they may affect the feelings and development of the children as it grows.
History of mentalism
Mind reading is a category of mentalism. Most of the historical accounts show that mentalism dates back to ancient Greece and the Old Testament of the Bible. Most mentalism tricks today are based on the supernatural powers seen during the 19th century. And the first performer of mentalism was Girolano Scotto, who was also a magician and diplomat.
Through the years, mentalism became a unique performing art. Many people are entertained and amused with the tricks, even though they are aware that these are just tricks most of the time. Today, there are many popular mentalists around the world who are regarded as the greatest mentalists of all time.
The greatest mentalists of all time
Many mentalists and mind readers today are inspired by the greatest mentalists of all time. These greatest mentalists flawlessly perform mental tricks which is a result of their passion, hard work, and talents. Do you want to be like them?
1. Derren Brown
Derren Brown is not only famous as a magician, publisher, and artist, he is also known for mentalism tricks and hypnotherapy. He did British TV series called the Trick of the Mind and Trick or Treat. He also performed in other TV and stage performances.
Banachek published manuals about mentalism, and invented various formulas and mentalism special effects. He is a professional mentalist and mind reader who is regarded as one of the most successful mentalists.
3. Ted Karmilovich
Many mental reading and mentalists performers today use the tricks of Ted Karmilovich. Ted Karmilovich is a popular active performing artist. He has performed at different institutions including corporate, universities/schools, and business events.
4. Gerry McCambridge
For over 20 years, Gerry McCambridge has won the hearts and appreciation of many mentalists and spectators around the world. His success may be attributed to different elements he applied to his mentalism tricks. These elements included combinations of the following: mind reading, nonverbal communication, magic, body movements, philology, hypnotherapy, movie theatre, and stand-up comedy.
5. Marc Salem
Marc Salem is famous for many mentalism tricks that focus on nonverbal interaction. He can read body language, stop his pulse at will, read minds, and determine things while being blindfolded. His good sense of humor is also his secret “recipe” while doing mentalism tricks to add more entertainment. Believing that people give off too much information about themselves nonverbally, Marc Salem utilizes the belief and information to assess people without verbally communicating.
6. Uri Geller
On his performances, Uri Geller tells the audience that he has supernatural powers. He successfully makes them believe it because of his smooth and complicated tricks. Although he was exposed, it was no longer a secret that he does not actually possess any supernatural power. Uri Geller is a very popular mentalist/ illusionist known to bend metals.
7. Bob Cassidy
Bob Cassidy shares the mentalism tricks he has learned through the years in his book. He also shares 37 best books to learn mentalism. One of Bob Cassidy’s secrets to his mentalism success is his confidence every time he performs.
Simple mind reading tricks
Of course your friends and family know that you don’t have any supernatural powers to read minds, predict the future, or determine secret thoughts. But you can make them think that you might have these powers by performing these simple mind reading tricks!
The luckiest person
This simple mind-reading trick is best performed with a large audience, but can also be done with smaller audiences. Ask for 10 volunteers to come up in front. Ask each one of them to tell their name. Write the name of the first person on one card, the second person on another card, the third person on another card, and so on. Do this until you reach the tenth person.
However, write down only the same name on each card, pretending that you are writing each person’s name on the cards. It is important to make sure that no one is near you and sees what you are writing on each card.
When you finish writing, put all the card inside a hat. Announce that you will predict who the luckiest person is. Make the prediction relevant to the even. If it’s a wedding party, announce that you will predict who is getting married next, or if it’s a birthday party, make the birthday celebrant as the luckiest person.
Write down your prediction on a board or slate. Show it to the audience. Then, draw the cards and pick up one. Ask someone to read the name of the card aloud. Now, watch your audience become amazed. Make sure that you immediately put away the remaining cards so that no one will know how you did the mind-reading trick.
Revealing someone’s thought
This is another way how to read minds. Ask someone to be a volunteer. With a little bit of math, this mind reading trick will be 90% successful. Now, ask the volunteer to think of any number from 2 – 9 without saying it out loud or keeping it inside his head. Ask him to multiply it by 9. The resulting number will be two digits; ask him to add these number together. Then ask him to subtract five from the sum.
Now ask him to think of the letter that corresponds to the last number on his mind. For example, A for 1, B for 2, C for 3, and so on. Ask him to think of a country that starts with letter D. Next, ask him to think of an animal that starts with the second letter of that country.
Tell the volunteer and the audience that you already know what the volunteers is thinking. Write down your answer, Denmark and elephant, on a piece of paper. Ask your volunteer to read it out loud and he will confirm that it is the right answer. Watch the volunteer and the audience be amazed of your mind-reading trick!
This mind reading trick works because the mathematical answer to the first part of the trick always is “4,” which means that the corresponding letter of the alphabet will be “D.” The very common thought that comes to mind when asked about a country that starts with letter D is Denmark, and about an animal that starts with letter E is elephant. It works most of the time unless your volunteer thinks of an unusual answer.
Mind tricks for daily hacks
One of the advantages we can get from our ability to trick minds is to make daily living easier. Here are some daily hacks that we can do with mind tricks:
- When doing a high five, look at the other person’s elbow so you won’t miss it.
- When trying to feed your child vegetables, he/she might refuse to eat them. Instead of directly asking him to eat his/her veggies, ask him/her if he/she want to have the vegetables in a pink plate or in a blue cup. He/she will like to pick up one color and eat the vegetables in it.
- When you try to find something, look from right to left instead of the usual left to right. You will easily notice it because your mind is not used to looking this way.
- When you want to tell a lie, incorporate a personal and embarrassing story in it. The lie will work and the person you are lying to will believe it because he will remember the embarrassing thing but not your lie.
- On winning rock, paper, scissors: Right before you count or interrupt the count, ask your opponent a personal question. This will catch them off guard. Then immediately continue with counting like nothing happened. Most of the time, your opponent will likely throw scissors as an automatic defense mechanism.
- If you think that someone is starting at you, look at your watch. This person will likely look at his/her watch too. This way you can prove that he/she is really looking at you.
- During a negotiation, remain silent. Your silence will make the other person feel uncomfortable and do anything to break this silence.
- Suffering from last-song syndrome or “ear worm”? Think of that song again and finish it. It will go away. Why? Because the mind has a problem with something left unfinished. This is called the Zeigarnik effect. Finishing the song will help it go away from your mind.
- To make the other person agree with you, nod your head while you speak to him. The person will more likely to agree with you.
Mentalism basic techniques
How to read minds includes basic techniques that are learned through perseverance and practice. These includes careful observation of nonverbal cues and body language such as twitches, dilation of eyes, facial expressions, and other visual and auditory signs. Then, take note of these cues and use them to analyze a person. Practice this and implement it in your daily life. After a while, you will get better at interpreting nonverbal cues and applying them to mind-reading tricks.
Another basis of mentalism is called the hot reading. This is applied to people who you already know a little about. This is done by eavesdropping on their conversation, doing research, and applying careful observation of their nonverbal cues. The information that you get from cold reading may be used to analyze your spectators.
Many mentalists apply techniques and styles such as comedy or a little drama to add spice to their mentalism and mind reading tricks.
The Revelation Effect method
One of the methods that today’s successful mentalists apply in their mind reading and mentalism tricks is now revealed. Now you can learn them too and be like a mentalist! It is called the Revelation Effect. It is one of most powerful and effective methods of mentalism and mind reading. Do you want to know the name of a person? Do you want to reveal the secret thoughts of someone? Do you want to learn how to read minds? The Revelation Effect can teach you all of these in just 60 minutes!
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With all these basic methods and techniques used by popular mentalists, how to read minds is no longer a secret.