Research Activites

A Telephone Telepathy Experiment

You can easily devise a test of your telepathic powers with your home telephone. When the phone rings, try to identify who's calling before you answer. For example, one day when your phone rings, you think: Grandma is calling. It turns out that you're right, but does this mean that you have ESP? You could have known that your grandmother was calling for at least four reasons. First, this could be the usual time that she called. Second, she may have said that she would call sometime that day. Third, you could have been lucky. Fourth, you had telepathic communication. To test this possibility, follow these steps:

Number of persons needed: one (you)

Materials needed: recording form, pencil, and a clock

Set-Up: Keep your recording form and pencil by the telephone.


1. When the phone rings, write down your first idea of who is calling before you answer the phone. To make sure you have time to record your prediction and answer the phone, you might want to develop a list of abbreviations (GM = grandma; M = Mom, etc.)

2. After you answer the phone, record the name of the actual caller and the time of the phone call.

Checking the Results: On a regular basis (either every day or every week), tally the number of hits you've made.

Determining the Subject's Success: Repeated hits are a sign of telepathy, although many will say they you were simply making a lucky guess. Repeated hits with the same person are perhaps a better sign of telepathy. It may be that you are always able to identify one specific caller, but not others. You may have a telepathic connection with that person.


For many other experiments, see Chapter 7, How to Read Your Mother's Mind.

Copyright © James M. Deem. Adapted from How to Read Your Mother's Mind © James M. Deem. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1994. All rights reserved.