This page gives some interesting facts on the history of levitation up to the present day. It is hoped that by the year 2123, or at least by the year 3000 depending on our health and educational systems, most people will have learned how to use their full brain potential, including their innate ability to fly. But a few people have already reportedly been precursors with this largely untapped yet natural ability of the human neurophysiology.
Gravity is one of the most baffling of natural forces to scientists, from Archimedes to Einstein. Physicists know exactly how it works, but not why. It is one of the most discussed topics in scientific research journals and layman journal about physics. For example, the November 2005 issue of Scientific American focused on this topic in an article titled "The Illusion of Gravity ."
It states that "the force of gravity and one of the dimensions of space might be generated out of the peculiar interactions of particles and fields existing in a lower-dimensional realm ...Amazingly, some new theories of physics predict that one of the three dimensions of space could be a kind of an illusion--that in actuality all the particles and fields that make up reality are moving about in a two-dimensional realm like the Flatland of Edwin A. Abbott. Gravity, too, would be part of the illusion: a force that is not present in the two-dimensional world but that materializes along with the emergence of the illusory third dimension...."
According to Professor Craig Pearson, author of Yogic Flying, "The ability to float and even to fly appears to be an age old heritage of humanity. Throughout the ages, many cultures have reported instances of people who could float, and even fly through the air...more than 200 saints in our Western European tradition aresaid to have been able to hover or even to fly."
Levitation (lev’i tay shun): to rise or cause to rise in the air, esp. In apparent defiance of gravity. Levitation is a phenomenon of psychokinesis (PK) in which objects, people, and animals are lifted into the air without any visibly physical means and float or fly about. The phenomenon has been said to have occurred in mediumship, shamanism, trances, mystical rapture, and demonic possession. Some cases of levitation appear to be spontaneous, while spiritual or magical adepts are said to be able to control it consciously.
There seems to be several general characteristics about levitation. The duration of the phenomenon may last from a few minutes to hours. Generally it requires a great amount of concentration or being in a state of trance. Physical mediums who have been touched during levitation usually fall back to a surface.
Levitations of saints usually are accompanied by a luminous glow around the body. Numerous incidents of levitation have been recorded in Christianity and Islam. Among the first was Simon Magus in the first century. Other incidents reported among the Roman Catholic saints include the incident of Joseph of Cupertino (1603-16) also known as Friar Giuseppe Desa.
63), the most famous, who is said to have often levitated through the air. It is reported he often gave a little shriek just before levitating, and on one occasion levitated for as long as two hours. (Note: he is not to be confused with Joe of Cupertino, California)
Saint Teresa of Avila was another well known saint who reported levitating. She is usually painted with a bird, signifying her ability to fly. She told of experiencing it during states of rapture. One eyewitness, Sister Anne of the Incarnation, said Saint Teresa levitated a foot and a half off the ground for about a half hour. Saint Teresa wrote of one of her experiences: “It seemed to me, when I tried to make some resistance, as if a great force beneath my feet lifted me up. I know of nothing with which to compare it; but it was much more violent than other spiritual visitations, and I was therefore as one ground to pieces.” (Evelyn Underhill “Mysticism,” 1955) Also Saint Teresa observed these levitations frightened her but there was nothing she could do to control them. She did not become unconscious, but saw herself being lifted up.
And, at the beginning of the twentieth century Gemma Galgani, a Passionist nun, reported levitating during rapture. Incidents also have been reported in the religions of Hinduism and Buddhism. Milarepa, the great thirteenth century yogi of Tibet, is said to have possessed many occult powers such as the ability to walk, rest and sleep during levitating.
Such feats were said to be duplicated by the Brahmins and fakirs of India. Similar abilities were reportedly shared by the Ninja of Japan. Within the Eastern traditions levitation is reportedly accomplished through such secret techniques of breathing and visualization.
The techniques involve the employment of an universal life force and are called by various names such as: ‘prana,’’ch’i’ and ‘ki.’ Louis Jacolliot, a nineteenth-century French judge, traveled the East and wrote of his occult experiences. In “Occult Sciences in India and Among the Ancients” (1884, 1971) he describes the levitation of a fakir: Taking an ironwood cane which I had brought from Ceylon, he leaned heavily upon it, resting his right hand upon the handle with his eyes fixed upon the ground. He the proceeded to utter the appropriate incantations...[and] rose gradually about two feet from the ground. His legs were crossed beneath him, and he made no change in his position, which was very like that of those bronze statues of Buddha...For more than twenty minutes I tried to see how (he) could thus fly in the face and eyes of all known laws of gravity...the stick gave him no visible support, and there was no apparent contact between that and his body, except through his right hand.”
Jacolliot was further told by the Brahmins that the “supreme cause” of all phenomena was the ‘agasa’ (‘akasha’), the vital fluid, “the moving thought of the universal soul, directing all souls,” the force that the adepts learn to control.
Throughout history the determining factor for judging whether the practice of levitation is caused by good or evil influenced seems to depend on the one doing the levitating. Simon Magus was judged evil while Saint Teresa was said to do it in states of rapture.
During the Middle Ages and Renaissance levitation was thought to be a manifestation of evil. It was said to be an unusual phenomena generated by witchcraft, fairies, ghosts, or demons. Even to the present levitation is often thought to be involved in cases of demonic possession. Many times beds, tables, chairs and other objects have been witnessed flying up into the air apparently by themselves. They frequently aimed themselves at the exorcist or his assistants
In 1906 Clara Germana Cele, a sixteen year-old school girl from South Africa, was said to be demonic possessed. She raised up five feet in the air, sometimes vertically and sometimes horizontally. When sprinkled with holy water she came out of these states of possession. This was taken as proof of demonic possession. Likewise, incidents of poltergeists and haunting often involve the levitation of objects.
Some physical mediums claimed to have experienced levitations. The most famous is Daniel Douglas Home, who reportedly did it over a forty-year period. In 1868 he was witnessed levitating out of a third-story window, and he floated back into the building through another window.
When levitating Home was not always in a trance, but conscious and later described his feelings during the experiences. Once he described “an electrical dullness” sensation in his feet. His arms became rigid and were drawn over his head, as though he was grasping an unseen power which was lifting him. He also levitated furniture and other objects. The Catholic Church excommunicated Home as a sorcerer.
Although he was never discovered to be a fraud like other mediums who used wires and other contraptions to levitate objects. Italian medium Amedee Zuccarini was photographed levitating with his feet twenty feet off of a table.
Controlled experiments involving levitation are rare. During the 1960s and 1970s researchers reported some success in levitating tables under controlled conditions.
The Soviet PK medium Nina Kulagina has been photographed levitating a small object between her hands. Skeptics of levitation have come up with several theories as to its cause including hallucination, hypnosis, or fraud.
These theories are not applicable to all incidents, however. The most likely and acceptable explanation is the Eastern theory of an existence of a force (simply, an universal force), which belongs to another, nonmaterial reality, and manifests itself in the material world.
The technique of “yogic flying” which consists of low hops while seated in the lotus meditating position has been achieved by advanced practitioners of Transcendental Meditation ™. This has received worldwide publicity. The technique is claimed to be accomplished by maximizing coherence (orderliness) in brain-wave activity, which enables the brain to tap into the “unified field” of cosmic energy.
Levitation is an
ability to defy the laws of gravity and move up into the air without a visible means of support.
The early European Church tended to link this phenomena to diabolical practices and as such it has
been widely frowned upon.
There have been a number of incidences of levitation among both Saints, noteworthy Christians and over 200 Catholic Saints. Some of these include:
St. Edmund, then Archbishop of Canterbury circa 1242.
St. Teresa of Avila in Madrid during 1680.
Sister Mary an Arabian Carmelite nun in Bethlehem circa 1700.
St. Adolphus Liguori in Foggia during 1777.
Father Suarez at Santa Cruz in Southern Argentina in1911.
Perhaps the most extraordinary levitations of all was St. Joseph of Copertino born 1603 in Apulia Italy. After 22 years of ascetic behaviour coupled with religious torture to achieve a state of religious ecstasy, he finally managed to levitate. At one point a prayer-induced state of ecstasy resulted in him being transported through the air at Mass and left across the altar. Pope Urbain VIII was quite taken aback when St. Joseph of Cupertino floated a few feet above the ground in front of him. It is also reported that he managed to levitate more than a hundred times until his death in 1663 when he was canonized because of his unique ability, which was seen by the Church to have been the work of God.
Today scientists tend to be very skeptical of this type of phenomena, attributing it largely to mass hypnosis of the audience, clever illusions or even drug-induced hallucinations.
ZeroG Space Experience
Wikipedia.org - Metaphysical levitation
Wikipedia.org - /Yogic_flying
David Copperfield - Levitation
Metaphysical levitation is a name given to the paranormal phenomenon of levitation occurring without any scientific explanation (such as electromagnetism or air pressure). Of course, as with all paranormal events, cases of levitation are hotly disputed; traditionally the scientific and empiricist communities attribute such incidents to trickery, illusion, auto-suggestion, unseen natural causes, or most frequently simply deny the existence of any such phenomenon. On the other hand, spiritualists and religious communities tend to interpret metaphysical levitation as the supernatural action of the Holy Spirit, a god, a poltergeist, psychokinesis, or some other being or force within their own belief system. Spiritualists however almost always claim that metaphysical levitation occurs during altered state, such as mysticism rapture or ecstacy, demonic possession, trance or channeling.
The lack of respect for paranormal science among the empiricist scientific world means that controlled-condition testing of the phenomenon is extremely limited, further perpetuating the controversy. There is no compelling evidence to suggest that it is a real phenomenon, but some isolated cases, such as that of Daniel Douglas Home have so far proved impossible to dismiss with naturalistic explanations. The fact that it seems to be a very pervasive belief around the world, occurring in almost all major world religions and shamanic religions could either add or detract to the case for its veridity depending on interpretation.
Mystical Levitation in Christianity:
Demonic Levitation in Christianity:
Mystical Levitation in Hinduism
Louis Jacolliot wrote in 'Occult Sciences in India and Among the Ancients' (1884):
"Taking an ironwood cane which I had brought from Ceylon, he leaned heavily upon it, resting his right hand upon the handle with his eyes fixed upon the ground. He the proceeded to utter the appropriate incantations...[and] rose gradually about two feet from the ground. His legs were crossed beneath him, and he made no change in his position, which was very like that of those bronze statues of Buddha...For more than twenty minutes I tried to see how (he) could thus fly in the face and eyes of all known laws of gravity...the stick gave him no visible support, and there was no apparent contact between that and his body, except through his right hand."
Levitation by Mediums
Yogic Levitation or Flying by Meditation
The only very compelling and thorough case of controlled scientific tests recently was that of Nina Kulagina, a Russian 'psychokinetic', in the 1960s. She demonstrated the power to levitate small objects repeatedly in conditions which satisfied Russian, Czech and American scientists, although she never levitated herself. She levitated objects such as table tennis balls, wine glasses and matches, in conditions engineered to make the use of hidden magnets, wires and such like impossible. However, it is worth noting both that these feats are commonly reproduced onstage by illusionists, and that even the most sceptical and well-intentioned scientists can be fooled by the tricks of skillful magicians, as was proven by James Randi's Project Alpha in 1979.