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"The general purpose of our research . . . was to find out, if we could, something that would enable us to place the mind of man in a definite relation to the world of law and causation which our senses and our sciences have represented to us." So writes Dr. J. B. Rhine of the experiements and research which have been carried on for the past seven years at Duke University. Questions as to the possibility of the existence of a "sixth sense"; of mind-reading, and mental telepathy--questions which have puzzled the mind of man for centuries--are found here in accounts of scientific attempts to answer them.
"New Frontiers of the Mind" is a valuable contribution to the furthering of our knowledge of what the human mind actually is, or perhaps more properly, how the human mind functions and to what extent its powers may be and are extended. The story of the Duke experiments is in itself, even without considering its significance, an exciting one. With his colleagues, Professor Rhine set about testing the mind of the ordinary man. With a pack of specially prepared cards, they tried to ascertain whether the mind could display powers which could not be attributed to the functions of the known five senses.
The outstanding characteristic of the book might be said to be its factual presentation of material. The author does not ask or expect his readers to accept any of his theories without proof. He presents us with the facts which resulted from his experiments. The book is accompanied by a set of cards used at Duke University and the reader may conduct the same tests with subjects of his own.
With the development of science has come greater and greater knowledge of the functions and structure of the human body. ". . . one problem," writes Dr. Rhine, "remains conspicuously unsolved. It is the greatest of all puzzles about the nature of man. 'What is the human mind? Where does it belong, if anywhere, in the scheme of our knowledge as a whole?'" This is the puzzle that this book and, more important, these experiments, have attempted to solve. Whether they have is a question not to be answered at once, but certainly they have awakened the knowledge that there are "new frontiers of the mind" which are still to be explored and when and if they are known they will open new and totally strange fields of endeavor.
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