How to read the ‘soul of things’ | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

Part II


The ability to read the history of an object and the persons who have touched or held it is known as object reading or psychometry. Now, the word “psychometry,” as used in this article, has a different meaning from the word defined by Modern Psychology.


The word “psychometry” was coined by British researcher Joseph Rhodes Buchanan in the 1800s. He discovered that there were individuals who could hold an object and tell everything about the persons who had held or touched it.


He gathered statistics of the  circumstances in which psychometry was done. He wrote his findings in a book, “A Manual of Psychometry.”


Psychometry may be defined as the psychic or mental ability to hold an object and tell everything about that object—its origin, history and the people who have touched or held it. The book was full of statistics, and, therefore, was not fun to read.


In the 1850s, a geologist, Dr. William Denton,  discovered psychometry quite accidentally.


Gathering fossils in the field, Denton one day brought home an unknown specimen and showed it to his wife. When Mrs. Denton held it for a few seconds, she at once saw a vision of an extinct animal, as big as an elephant, with thick skin, and which lived in the swamps and ate only vegetables and fruits.


When the unknown specimen was finally identified, it turned out to be the fossilized tooth of a pachyderm, an extinct animal as big as an elephant, with thick skin, and which lived in swamps and ate only fruits and vegetables.


From that time on, Dr. Denton would bring home specimens from the field and his wife would identify them by merely holding the object. Later, Dr. Denton discovered that his wife’s sister could do the same.


Unknown human ability


Curious, he read literature on such ability and found only one reference to it—Joseph Rhodes Buchanan’s book “A Manual of Psychometry.”


After further experiments and research on this unknown human mental ability, Dr. Denton wrote a more interesting book he called “The Soul of Things.” In it Denton discussed the principles or characteristics of psychometry or object reading, and established it as one of man’s psychic abilities.


Almost anybody can do psychometric reading of an object, if he follows certain simple steps or procedures, like relaxing his mind and body, being passive and receptive to any idea that comes to mind, and suspending rational judgment or analysis.


I discovered “object reading” quite accidentally in the late ’70s. A friend doing psychic research was fond of testing my psychic abilities, even if I insisted that I did not have such ability. At that time, I was very skeptical of people who claimed to have ESP or psychic powers.


In one dinner, a friend said, “I want to conduct an experiment with you.” Before I could protest, he continued, “I have  four pens. One of these is a special one. I want you to hold each pen, with your eyes closed, and tell me which I am referring to as special.”


I reluctantly closed my eyes and held each pen. When he handed me the fourth pen, it felt different from the rest. So I said, “This is the special pen!”


“You are correct!” he exclaimed with great contentment. “How did you know?”


“I don’t know,” I replied. “It felt different from the others. What’s so special about that?”


“Well, nothing much, really,” he said. “It just belonged to a friend who just died. I just wanted to know if you could identify that pen.”


I told him he was crazy. He said he’d always known I was a psychic. I told him that was a mere coincidence, a product of chance. One out of four was not really impressive, I thought.




I had already forgotten that incident when something quite extraordinary took place a few weeks after that. We were in Baguio to look into the controversial faith healers and psychic surgeons.


One evening, in my friend’s condo unit, with nothing much to do since there was no TV or radio, my friend said, “Why don’t we conduct an experiment?


“I want to know if you can identify which book is about President Marcos, with your eyes closed. I will place each book on your lap and put your hand on the cover, and tell me which book is about Marcos.”


“How can I do that?” I protested.


“Let’s just try, okay?” he said.


So, I sat on a chair and  closed my eyes and as he put one book at a time on my lap, I placed my right hand on the cover.


To make sure I would not be able to differentiate one book from the other, he chose books which were of the same size and thickness. I would learn later that the books he placed on my lap were the Bible, a Webster’s dictionary, Tolstoy’s “War and Peace,” another book I can’t remember, and the book about Marcos.


When he placed the fifth book on my lap and I put my hand on the cover, I said, “This is the book about Marcos.”


I opened my eyes and saw the Marcos biography, “For Every Tear a Victory.”


I was surprised at how I was able to identify the book  with my eyes closed.


Then my friend told me, “Close your eyes again, open the book at random to any page and put your hand on that page.”


I did as he directed because I was encouraged by what I just did. After a few seconds, I felt a sharp pain in my body. And then I saw blood. As I told this to my friend, I quickly opened my eyes and read what was written on that page.


It told of the time Mr. Marcos was a guerrilla soldier during the war. He had been shot, and there was indeed blood! I knew this time it was no coincidence.


Next week: Why antiques can be dangerous


The next Practical Mind Dynamics seminar is on Sept. 29-30, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Rm. 308 Prince Plaza I, Legazpi St., Greenbelt, Makati City. For details, call 8107245/ 8159890 or 0920-9818962/63; e-mail Visit

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