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James Randi Educational Foundation

An Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes of the Occult and Supernatural

Introduction | "R" Reading | Curse of the Pharaoh | End-of-the-World Prophecies

Index | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z

Koestler, Arthur (1905-1983) A prominent political novelist and science writer, Arthur Koestler was born in Hungary and became a British subject in 1945. He became world famous upon the publication of his best-known work, Darkness at Noon, in 1941.
      In 1972, he brought out The Roots of Coincidence, a startling book in which he ascribed some sort of psychic significance to remarkable examples of chance, apparently unable to believe that these were mathematically possible and also inevitable. He began to believe in ESP because he saw in the developing modern ideas of the sciences——mainly quantum physics with its almost-mystical view of the universe——the possible admission of otherwise unthinkable notions that were being put forward by parapsychological theorists. He wrote:

      The apparent absurdities of quantum physics . . . make the apparent absurdities of parapsychology a little less preposterous and more digestible.

      Dr. Koestler died in a double suicide with his wife, Cynthia, in 1983. He had been suffering from leukemia and Parkinson's disease, while his wife was in apparently good health.

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