Legendary magicians: Mystery revealed

In the course of forty years, I have been able to trace a great deal of information about human phenomenons who are well-known in experimental psychology.
Wolf Messing, V.V. Shereshevsky, Rosa Kuleshova, Ninel Kulagina, Vanga, Chumak, Kashpirovsky, Longo, Uri Geller, and others.....
In the course of forty years, I have been able to trace a great deal of information about human phenomenons who are well-known in experimental psychology. While involving some of them in my own experiments, I was mainly using my personal method of dicriminatory analysis. The method allowed me to conclude that majority of my “subjects” simply lacked all of their widely advertised psychophysical qualities. All of it appeared to me as a complete mystery, an illusion of sort. Most importantly, there exist a tremendous amount of people who blindly believe in those peoples’ unique abilities.  
Wolf Messing
In October of 1966 I was testing Messing's telepathic abilities in a Medical Institute in Semipalatinsk. Upon my first arrival to the Institute, I decided to get acquainted with the maestro in the first place. He in turn refused to meet me. I had no other choice but to introduce myself as one of Messing's colleagues in order to be present on one of his performances. Everyone was impressed by my enthusiasm to get to know Messing. Eventually, even maestro himself inquired about me. I was later introduced to Messing as one of the members of the ensemble.
In the course of Messing’s performance, I asked several students to participate in a special sйance. Each one of them had been introduced to the special assignment in advance. The assignment consisted of three main stages. During the first stage, Messing had to reveal his physical sensitivity towards ideomotor acts of a participant (audience member). The second stage was meant to observe maestro's logical thinking. Finally, the third stage was meant to observe Messing’s telepathic abilities in order to determine someone's figure. The assignment undermined the following: entering the auditorium, stopping right by the third row, stomping once, continuing to walk towards the tenth row and pointing to a chandelier. Later,  a student had to walk to the end of the auditorium, find a briefcase, locate a book in  it, open the book on page 101, take an enclosed envelope and open it. In it, a student was to find a symbol of peace—a picture of Picasso's dove and to proclaim the following phrase, “Let there be Peace.”
As I expected it, Messing had brilliantly completed the first stage of the task. During the second stage where he was meant to exhibit his magnificent analytical skills, Messing's result was satisfactory. The third task however turned out to be impossible for maestro to finish at all.
Later, I showed several etudes of rather complex nature to those students. I was able to find a hidden needle, located certain book in the library and was even able to point a word in that book which they had chosen. I managed to complete all of the tasks without using my hands or my sight to control things. As soon as all of us returned to the auditorium, Wolf Messing was on stage surrounded by many of his fans. The moment Messing saw me, he proclaimed, “Young man! You should not get too excited over these things. This is a gift from God. You better continue with your musical career and you will be a successful musician.”
The students could keep the secret any longer and revealed all of my etudes to Wolf Messing. They even remarked that my “program” had been much more difficult than his. Messing was furious. He cancelled his remaining shows. Perhaps, this was the right thing to do indeed.
In 1975 I was preparing a show of operational thinking based on brain's non-central functioning. I managed to learn to play the piano with my left hand. In addition, I was performing 5-6 different tasks with my right hand. Even most talented musicians of today will find themselves incapable of repeating the same routine.
In ten years, I was on a tour and ended up in the exact same town as Messing. Back then, I was faced with exact same task by a bunch of graduate students from the local Medical Institute. I successfully completed the entire routine. The audience was completely bedazzled. In response, I said just one phrase, “You can ask our famous physicists A. I. Kitaigorodsky and V.L. Linzburg, both of whom are my supporters in a fight against pseudo-science and mysticism.”
S.V. Shereshevsky, whose abilities have been carefully studied in the course of thirty years by such soviet psychologists as L.S. Vigotsky and A.R. Luria, is another rather “mystical” persona. After the research, Luria wrote a book entitled “A small book of big memory.” In it the scientist ratifies that Shereshevsky possessed the most phenomenal memories ever described in scientific literature.
He was able to memorize twenty digits in a 35-40 second time frame and remember them for decades. Obviously, he possessed an eidetic type of memory. An ordinary person however is capable of memorizing the same twenty digits in a 20 second time frame using mnemonic method. As far as his long term memory is concerned, this is not really a proved fact. Upon his arrival home, Sherevsky would recite the exact same information over and over again. This was especially true before the upcoming meetings with scientists.          
Rosa Kuleshova, who is particularly famous for her phenomenal sight, in fact uses illusionist tricks of an Indian illusionist Sorkar who was the first to master such focus-pocus.
At times, she would use a different method in various scientific circles. One of such techniques, for instance, has been described in a film entitled “One step behind horizon.” Kuleshova is asked to read a word through a sealed envelope. “What do you see?”, asks the questioner. “A stick,” replies Kulishova. “What else?” follows another question. “I see a circle,” once more utters Kulishova. “That is correct.” This is how she deciphered all the letters in that word. In the end, the word “RUDA” is revealed. The audience cheers. Such was one the most ‘difficult’ words of Rosa Kulishova's career.    
Another human phenomenon—Ninel Kulagina. Originally from St Petersburg, she became famous for her “tricks” of telekinesis. She used powerful magnets in her performances and thin threads, all of which remained unnoticed for the audience. At times, her trick appeared to be quite elaborate. For instance, she asked to cover several matches with a glass. To everybody's surprise, the matches continued to move. What the audience did not know was the fact that each one of those matches had a needle inside. Each one of them in turn was influenced by a powerful magnet inserted either in her shoes or underneath her clothes.    
Vanga and Vanya
In the course of my long-term research, I was able to experiment with uncle Vanya from Taldi-Kurgan. He reached a peak of stardom in 1970s. I attended one of his “shows” My taxi driver informed me of a healer named uncle Vanya in their village who is capable of curing people even of most horrible sicknesses. “People from the entire country arrive here to visit him,” noted the driver. By the end of our talks, we decided to make a bet, to see whether uncle Vanya was as fantastic as the driver had said.   
It took us a few hours to reach uncle Vanya's house. It was surrounded by people. We were admitted in no time however. We were welcomed. After a short introductory speech, uncle Vanya grabbed my hair strand and placed it in a Vodka jar. Afterwards, he started a rather amorphous discussion about my life. He even threw in some interesting facts, which were of course a lie. On my return back to the car, I handed a sealed envelope with my explanations of the witnessed to my taxi driver. Here is the explanation. All taxi drivers in this tiny town work as informational managers for uncle Vanya. They pick up passengers from the train station and guarantee their admittance by uncle Vanya ahead of others. A certain sum of money is obviously demanded for such hassle. Afterwards, they claim their professionalism and pretend to cure any disease.       
If uncle Vanya worked on a rather small scale, aunty Vanga managed to bring the matter all the way to the governmental level. She was under a constant watch of Bulgarian special services. Therefore, she needed to “work” with celebrities such as L. Leonov, S. Mikhalkov, V. Tikhonova, Presidents Ilyumzhinov, Todor Zhivkov, and other famous individuals. All of them were stunned by Vanga's insights. Bulgarian president Todor Zhivkov was especially impressed after Vanga had told him one incident from his youth. Such incident was also remembered by Bulgarian special services.
I recommended V. I. Sudakov to use my method of discriminatory-discrediting method on Vanga, the one I used to discredit uncle Vanya. He completed the task successfully. My fellow “truth-seeker” discovered that this was all just a mere advertising campaign to attract more tourists to esoteric Bulgaria. Besides, a lot of her forecasts did not come true at all.  
In the course of many years of communicating with sorcerers and magicians, I got convinced of their non-existent spirituality, as a mean to do good for others.
So, what exactly did those people do?
First of all, their main goal was to satisfy their personal material situation. Afterwards, fame and vanity started to rule them all. Their activity could simply termed—a study of human beings. The study requires an in-depth knowledge of many fundamental sciences about humans. One cannot acquire such knowledge within days. Years of tedious work is needed in order to reach certain results and learn certain skills. The above mentioned individuals decided to choose a shorter road to stardom by fooling the entire nation.
Such occurrences were typical in 90s in Russia. It was particularly during those years that a tremendous amount of “famous” magicians, sorcerers and healers appeared on the surface. Obviously, this was done with government’s permission.
I was lucky enough to be in touch with several of such sorcerers. Each one of our Russian magicians (Kashpirovsky, Chumak, Longo, and Djuna) was unique in his/her own way. Longo was the most “loud” one. He could bring dead people to life, cure incurable illnesses and so on. He claimed that he could bring Lenin himself back to life. KGB however opposed such decision. Interestingly, neither government, nor the general public did not show any signs of distress towards those “tricks” which were often broadcasted on TV.       
I was once invited to a TV show “The Third Eye” with Longo. In the course of our lively discussion, I handed him an envelope with an enclosed photograph and a short note. I asked him to help me locate the Artamanov's family father. Longo carefully examined the photographed, waved his hands and then exclaimed with an absolute assurance that the father will return home in six months. In the meantime, the entire Artamonov family, including their father, was watching their TV screen in their cozy living room.   

Yury Gorny

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Author`s name Andrey Mikhailov