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Michael Daniels
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I have been pondering the principles on which mentalism effects are based and I can think of only four basic types of method (I am not including physical effects such as PK).

These are:

1. The force.
2. The peek.
3. Cold, warm or hot reading.
4. Memory and mental calculation.

It seems to me that all mentalist effect utilise one or more of these four fundamental methods. Am I missing any other basic principles? Of course there are endless variations and subtleties for each type, but any other basic "pillars"?

Mike
Cristobal
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For me, these are the pillars of mentalism:

* Illusionism
* Billet/paper/envelopes/... working
* Physiology
* Psychology
* Oracles
* Hypnosis

This is in general, but if you want a mentalism more "pure" you'll need to remove the first or first two.
Euan4
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I use the force in almost all my routines...

"these are not the droids you are looking for.."

Works a charm.

Euan
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SamNJ
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The late Jack Dean and C.L. Boarde, two giants of mentalism, had a number of conversations regarding this very issue, and they would have reduced it down to only two principles: the force and the peek (or the "steal" as Boarde called it). The mentalist either (1) compels the participant to unwittingly select a piece of information, or (2) captures the participant's freely-selected thought, and then reveals it back to her.

I might add that Jack strongly favored the force and has said that his idea of the ideal routine would be an all-force one.

S.
SamNJ
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The late Jack Dean and C.L. Boarde, two giants of mentalism, had a number of conversations regarding this very issue, and they would have reduced it down to only two principles: the force and the peek (or the "steal" as Boarde called it). The mentalist either (1) compels the participant to unwittingly select a piece of information, or (2) captures the participant's freely-selected thought, and then reveals it back to her.

I might add that Jack strongly favored the force and has said that his idea of the ideal routine would be an all-force one.

S.
Pakar Ilusi
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You like it so much you posted it twice. Smile
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cpbartak
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Walter Davis has actually been releasing a series of workbooks called the 4 pillars of mentalism.
Some people hear voices.. Some see invisible people.. Others have no imagination whatsoever.
Michael Daniels
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Quote:
On 2011-06-13 10:02, SamNJ wrote:
The late Jack Dean and C.L. Boarde, two giants of mentalism, had a number of conversations regarding this very issue, and they would have reduced it down to only two principles: the force and the peek


I wondered whether it was just two principles for some time but then thought the other two were needed. Cold and warm reading elicit and use information that is directly observable (e.g., body language) and for that reason isn't quite the same as a peek. Also effects like Day for Any Date and Knight's Tour use memory and mental calculation but don't (normally) involve either a force or a peek.

Are there any mentalist effects (other than PK) that do NOT depend on any of these four methods?

Mike
Michael Daniels
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Quote:
On 2011-06-13 10:30, cpbartak wrote:
Walter Davis has actually been releasing a series of workbooks called the 4 pillars of mentalism.


I don't know these workbooks (sorry I unwittingly nicked the phrase). Are Davis's pillars different from the ones I flagged up?

Mike
cpbartak
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Here's how I classify things: http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/searc......=6560841

I'd rather not repost it in the open forum.
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gmeister
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Walter's workbooks--like all his creations--are excellent. Whether or not you agree with his classification system, he presents a trove of ideas and information. I'm sure he'll be joining this conversation. Check them out, Mike--I think you'll like them and they'll give you some good bricks to build out this interesting discussion.
SamNJ
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Sorry about the double posting. I'm not sure how that happened.
S.
WDavis
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First, sorry everyone for being absent of late, the non digital world has taken most of my time recently.

Mike,
my breakdown on mentalism is NOT technique but their function. I also use seminole works as text books as mine are merely workbooks.

the 1st pillar is character/presentation

the 2nd pillar is
ways to learn thoughts

the 3rd pillar is
ways to control thoughts

the 4th is
ways to deliver thoughts

and for those who don't know this is completely free just go to http://www.mentaltek.com click on the contact us page type your email and put 4 pillars in the subject line.

currently, only the first 2 pillars are completed but the 3rd is nearing completion.

Chris and Gary thank you for your kind words.

any questions don't hesitate to ask,
Walter
Lost in Thought
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I believe you missed "after-facting" from your original list (NW, for instance... although Cold Reading could be said to be a subset of this.)

I would argue that a concept such as "simulation" (Mis-reading, double writing, etc.) should probably be on there as well.

If you're after more basic principles then "sleights" and "suggestion" should be on there.

You could probably sum up all of the above and more as "One-ahead", depending on how granular you like your theory to be.

What was your thinking behind this? Why do you think it is important?
Michael Daniels
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Quote:
On 2011-06-13 14:35, WDavis wrote:
my breakdown on mentalism is NOT technique but their function.


Thanks Walter - yes, your approach (very interesting) is based on a different way of looking at mentalism. I am focussing just on methods.

Mike
WDavis
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Mike,
granted I focus on what they are used for, but I still cover the techniques, but instead of only saying the 'how' of the techniques I also attempt to cover the who, what, when, and where of the tools and techniques.

my reasoning is mentalism needs more than just a howto manual, jut like an artist uses diffent tools to paint a masterpiece so does the mentalist, unfortunately good artists know why, when, where, and how to use their tools. many mentalist unfortunately, do not.
David Thiel
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I thought the four pillars of mentalism were:

1) Good Scotch
2) A lot of time on your hands (in which to consume aforementioned Good Scotch and think about how to actually do weird stuff)
3) A very good sound system (or quality earphones) to occupy part of your mind while you consume good Scotch and think about weird stuff with all that time you have on your hands.
4) A willingness to try out said weird stuff in front of an actual audience -- with or without the aid of good Scotch.

But maybe that's just me...
Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Except bears. Bears will kill you.


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PaulPacific
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I always believed in the 4F (No, not Fechter's Finger Flicking Frolics)

but rather:

-Force it.
-Fake it.
-Fill it in.
-Find it out.
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barefoot boy with cheeks of tan...
Outward sunshine; inward joy,
Blessings on thee, barefoot boy! :-D
Michael Daniels
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Quote:
On 2011-06-13 14:47, Lost in Thought wrote:
I believe you missed "after-facting" from your original list (NW, for instance... although Cold Reading could be said to be a subset of this.)

I would argue that a concept such as "simulation" (Mis-reading, double writing, etc.) should probably be on there as well.

If you're after more basic principles then "sleights" and "suggestion" should be on there.

You could probably sum up all of the above and more as "One-ahead", depending on how granular you like your theory to be.

What was your thinking behind this? Why do you think it is important?


"After-facting"/one-ahead - yes, I agree, this stands on its own as another basic method in addition to the four I mentioned. In other words, effects can be constructed that rely ONLY on this principle (though it is also commonly combined with the others).

I'd probably include suggestion / bluff / faking it under the category of cold reading.

Sleights - I suppose this depends whether you see this as mentalism or magic (but that's another, well-worn, question).

My interest comes initially from surprise that there are so few basic methods employed in mentalism (in comparison with magic).

Mike
Lost in Thought
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Quote:
On 2011-06-13 18:29, Michael Daniels wrote:
Sleights - I suppose this depends whether you see this as mentalism or magic (but that's another, well-worn, question).


I'd argue that a billet or envelope switch can absolutely be mentalism, and isn't necessarily covered by the above principles - look at "Tervil", for instance... that's neither a peek nor a force.
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