The press has recently been abuzz with speculation that Tom Cruise has psychic powers — not because he has demonstrated or claimed any particular abilities like predicting lottery numbers or finding missing persons, but because of his affiliation and belief in Scientology, which teaches how to be psychic.
According to a recent story in Us Weekly,
What does “psychically controlling” matter, energy, space and time mean? It’s not clear, but presumably it means that Cruise is one of the most powerful beings in the universe, and has vast psychic powers and abilities.
If the reports are true, Tom Cruise joins a long list of others who have claimed psychic abilities including psychokinesis (moving physical objects through thought), and telepathy (reading people’s minds or sensing distant information).
Perhaps the most famous person to claim real-life psychokinetic powers was Uri Geller, known worldwide in the 1970s and 1980s for claiming to bend metal cutlery—spoons in particular—with his mind. These claims were never proven under strictly controlled scientific experiments, and many of Geller’s methods were later exposed by magician James Randi. Geller has since largely dropped from the public eye, most recently making news for incorrectly predicting in 2005 that Michael Jackson’s career comeback was going to be “the most dramatic ever seen in showbiz.”
Over the past decades fewer and fewer people have claimed psychokinetic abilities; that particular brand of psychic ability seems to have more or less vanished as the public has grown more savvy to magician’s tricks and high-resolution studio cameras have made it easier to catch frauds. The days of spoons bending dramatically in people’s hands are gone, replaced instead by a much less impressive form of psychokinesis in which psychics claim to influence random number generators in laboratories—making them spit out a slightly higher number of even or odd numbers than would be expected by random chance, for example. Even this watered-down version of psychic ability has generally failed to impress scientists.
Though many elements of Scientology theology (written by science fiction author L. Ron Hubbard) seem strange, it’s fair to note that many religions include paranormal or supernatural beliefs including virgin birth, walking on water, miraculous healings, garments and amulets that protect the wearer from harm, and so on. One man’s miracle is another man’s superstition.
If Tom Cruise truly can control matter, space, energy, and time, it’s no wonder that studios are clamoring to hire him — he can save millions of dollars in production costs. No need to use invisible wire rigs or special effects to make actors fly, since Cruise should be able do it with his mind. And with Cruise in the cast, there’s no such thing as running behind schedule since he can presumably control time itself. But perhaps Cruise could do the most good using his powers to make the public forget about bombs like Knight & Day…