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The Dye-House Records

Dreamed before 1961 by a Christian secretary, as reported to the Rhine Institute

...the proper mental state [for ESP] may be acquired by prayer which, whatever else it may be, is a method of inducing concentration with a minimum of conscious strain. A young woman secretary in a dye-house firm tried that method.

We had a storage vault, two stories high, with filing drawers piled high, containing bills, orders, correspondence, personnel records, etc. Prior to this day, I had never been in this vault. Our office manager had suffered a stroke, so was absent. One of our engines broke down and the company engineer and his helper rushed up from New Jersey to fix it. But before starting on the engine, they had to know the details. Time had erased all the markings but the name. No one knew what year it was bought, what price, what guarantee, what parts, names or numbers to order, etc.

The manager asked me to "drop everything and look for some information on this, if it takes two weeks." I felt sick. My regular clerical duties kept me quite busy. I had no trained replacement while I'd do nothing but search through a mountain of files.

So, I went into our small "current-files" vault and prayed: "Holy Ghost, I have no right to ask this of you, but I do ask it. Please show me where that information is." Then, not too optimistically, I went down the hall to the big vault, hesitated, put my will completely in God's hands, and moved, not willfully, but as one gently pushed. I climbed up the iron stairs to the second-floor balcony, around which many of the filing drawers were stacked. Moved along until stopped. Opened a drawer as high as I could reach. Left it to find a box to stand on. Closed my eyes and lifted out a folder. Opened it—and nearly dropped.

Within about five minutes after his first instructions to me my boss held in his hands the then all-important, complete information.


I worked for years as the book-finder for the main library at Stanford. We got several requests a day to rush-catalog books. My job was to find them in our backlog of perhaps 100,000 uncataloged books--in storage, on book trucks, on workdesks, in binderies. The records on these were scanty and often wrong; I faced Christian Secretary's problem daily. I soon learned that I had to empty my mind of logic and preconceptions, picture the book I needed to find, and then just... move toward it. It was great shamanic training! I've used it since, whenever I've lost something--or, increasingly, when I need new things I haven't a clue how to find.

Since I succeeded without praying to any ghosts (holy or not) I agree with Rhine that we needn't attribute such workday miracles to outside help; yet I'll attest that prayer or a similar mental state did help. For years, Stanford's research community unknowingly relied on it.

--Chris Wayan

SOURCE: Hidden Channels of the Mind by Louisa E. Rhine, 1961, p. 198-9. Account untitled, author's name witheld; title & byline added to aid searching & indexing.

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