Good Therapy: A Plea To Therapists to Accept Paranormal Experiences

Powell contributes to a growing theme in parapsychological research to consider the therapeutic benefits of accepting patient’s paranormal experiences as legitimate. To that end, Powell cites four case studies where working with the patient’s paranormal experiences led to positive outcomes for the client.


In a strict sense, paranormal experiences within psychology can easily be diagnosed as a possible sign of psychosis (seeing and hearing things) or other mental illness of a serious nature. Powell makes the case that without other symptoms present of psychosis, it may be best to treat paranormal experiences as real to the client.


Powell supports his perspective with four case studies, each of which involves the patient having contact with a deceased relative or belief that a spirit was harassing them. Powell approached each case by accepting these events at face value and treating them as real. By validating the patient’s experience and working with them to resolve their perceived paranormal experience, all four clients reported relief from their symptoms and positive outcomes.



Powell, A. (2017). Research note: The healing potential of anomalous perceptual experiences. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 81, 26-31.

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