Also found in: Medical.


(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

While psychokinesis is the movement of objects without physical contact, parakinesis is the similar movement of objects but with physical contact which is insufficient to explain the movement. For example, when a large, heavy table is moved by a medium placing her hands on an edge of it, although it could never normally be moved by that medium no matter how hard she might try. This is often seen in table tipping, when an especially large and heavy table is used.

In Warsaw, psychical researcher and University of Lember psychology lecturer Julien Ochorowicz (1850–1917) used a dynamometer to measure forces exerted by the medium Eusapia Paladino. The instrument measured a force three times greater than the medium’s normal ability and far in excess of the strongest man present at the séance. At another séance in Breslau at the home of Professor Friese, with the medium Madame d’Esperance (Elizabeth Hope), the strongest man in Silesia—described as “a veritable Hercules"—was unable to prevent the movements of a table touched by the medium.


Shepard, Leslie A: Encyclopedia of Occultism & Parapsychology. New York: Avon Books, 1978
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