Follow the fascinating story of one man’s journey into the realm of the fantastic: the CIA-sponsored psychic spies with the ability to extend their consciousness to accurately describe targets not only half a world away but to look into the future as well. It all sounded like science fiction to John Herlosky after reading an expose by former member of the CIA’s Project Stargate, Dr. David Morehouse. Two years later, skeptical but intrigued by the possibilities implied, John entered the classroom of Dr. Morehouse to find out the truth—and never looked back. Sorcerer’s Apprentice is an autobiographical account of the author’s experience learning the CIA-sponsored scientifically validated form of extrasensory perception called “remote viewing.” The book chronicles the author’s journey from interested skeptic to operational remote viewer working his first mission as well as his former life as a police officer and private military contractor. He takes you on a journey from the crushing depths and pathos of the wreck of the Titanic to the fate of a downed pilot missing for 19 years from the first Gulf War. Witness the personal turmoil as the author’s long-held beliefs clash with the powerful implications of his experiences.
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About the Author
John Herlosky has worked for two large metropolitan police departments as a police officer and academy instructor, has been trained in SWAT tactics, and is a designated marksman. He is considered an expert in the field of human performance technologies and has spent half his life in the martial arts. He was the codirector and cofounder of the nonprofit think tank, the Institute for Evolutionary Technologies, as well as the codirector of Project Trojan Warrior II, a mind-body integration training program. He lives in Monrovia, California.
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A Sorcerer's Apprentice
A Skeptic's Journey into the CIA's Project Star Gate
By John Herlosky
Trine DayCopyright © 2015 John Herlosky
All rights reserved.
The greatest smart weapon in the world fires only neurons.
– Unknown drill sergeant
I'm not a "natural" psychic. I know that sounds strange given the title of this book. But I've never had a premonition, seen a ghost or UFO, or had a prophetic dream. As far as I knew, I had the psychic ability of a sack of hammers.
What I am, is a very pragmatic and determined person who doesn't like to accept a rationale unless it's backed up by facts. If you say that a proposition is truth, then you had better be able to back up your assertion with research and conclusions that can be corroborated.
My schooling had been in the tradition of the scientific method. In college, I majored in mathematics with minors in engineering and philosophy. From college, I went on to law enforcement. I worked for two large metropolitan police departments and earned a degree in criminal justice. I was trained in observation and investigation. I learned how to weed out the facts from the fiction.
My feelings at that time regarding ESP were that if it did exist, it was a rare phenomenon, virtually uncontrollable and not replicable in the lab. I wasn't the only one who thought so as a large contingent of famous scientists shared my position.
In the early 70's, though, a paradigm shift was gaining momentum. Although, it happened first in the scientific community, its greatest impact would be on organizations shrouded in secrecy and intrigue.
Events were soon to illustrate the well-known saying that when a famous scientist says something is possible, he is probably right; when he says something is impossible, he is invariably wrong.
In the early 1970s, the Soviets were heavily involved in psychic research. Unable to keep up technologically with the West, the Soviets were desperate to find a way to close the gap. Psi research seemed plausible to Soviet leaders. They began looking into ways of turning psychic ability into not only an intelligence-gathering tool, but also into a weapon. They began research into what became known as "psychotronic weapons"; infernal devices that use electromagnetic energy tuned to the same frequency as a person's brain waves to disrupt cognitive activity or even to kill. Alarming reports came in that the KGB was beaming microwave energy into American embassies, causing a number of disturbing symptoms.
As these reports came in to U.S. intelligence services, two laser physicists working for the second largest think tank in the U.S., the Stanford Research Institute, began a series of experiments under CIA auspices that were to demonstrate certain "psychic abilities". The men tasked with this assignment were Dr. Hal Puthoff and Dr. Russell Targ, working with a noted New York artist and psychic Ingo Swann and a retired police officer, Pat Price.
In 1975, the Air Force Foreign Technology Office, under the direction of Dr. Dale Graff, took over the program from the CIA and became the primary funder of the SRI program.
In 1975, the U.S. Army's Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Maj. General Edmund Thompson, learning of the experiments run by SRI, began his own program code-named Gondola Wish.
Thus was started one of the most controversial and highly classified programs in U.S. intelligence history. Funded with over $20 million dollars, the program lasted for over two decades under the auspices of the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, the U.S. Army and Air Force. It was also under yearly congressional oversight and review. The project was variously known by the code names Gondola Wish, Grill Flame, Center Lane, Sun Streak, and finally Star Gate.
With the Stanford Research Institute in charge of further research and the intelligence services and military handling the operational aspect, there was an uneasy alliance.
The members of the remote viewing program never felt as if those they worked for appreciated their efforts. Many times information that the viewers provided, information that proved correct, was not utilized. The common belief at that time was that if you were a military officer on the fast track to promotion, assignment to the remote viewing program was career suicide. Many in the intelligence community sneered at the program members, saying that they were nothing more than charlatans, or worse, in league with the devil.
Several general officers of the command staff of these intelligence services who tasked the viewers and utilized their results, were uncomfortable with the implications of the remote viewing program. Many of these officers had strongly fundamentalist religious views and felt that even if the program wasn't exactly evil; it wasn't exactly 'kosher' either. The fact that the viewer's data was accurate repeatedly in situations where no other intelligence asset could retrieve such data reinforced their religious prejudice.
These general officers decided to cancel the program. The CIA was the first of the intelligence agencies to do so, surprising, since they were the progenitors of the program. The remote viewing program however had some strong support in congressional committees, committees that controlled the purse strings of these agencies. These friends found a new home for the program with the DIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency.
Again, the people in the project found themselves ostracized, even as the program's friends in Congress continued the funding.
It wasn't long before the program's enemies and the inevitable internal conflicts generated by the stress that the viewers themselves were under, caused the program to suffer once again. The Defense Intelligence Agency no longer wanted the program. In 1986 the congressional friends found another home for the project, now christened Sunstreak, with the Air Force Office of Science and Technology Directorate, code-named OTS-D. More and more, however, the congressional representatives who were once friends with the program began to drift away. The controversy was becoming too dangerous for their political careers. Then in 1995, disaster struck. The remote viewing project had been reassigned back to the CIA, under a new congressional budget, now christened Star Gate. The same organization that had been trying to eliminate the program for the past ten years now had their chance. Under a Congressional mandate to provide an evaluation of the remote viewing program, the CIA commissioned a private research firm, the American Institute of Research, or AIR, to conduct the investigation. The CIA only allowed the investigators two percent of the thousands of remote viewing sessions to be reviewed and only sessions after 1993 were allowed. This was at a time when there were only three remote viewers available and few sessions were done. It wasn't a surprise then that the AIR conclusion was a negative one and the CIA had their recommendation that the program be disbanded. So ended the remote viewing program; a program that despite all odds had produced some of the most amazing intelligence coups in the history of American spying.
Some of the findings of the Ft. Meade Unit, where the remote viewers were primarily based, have been declassified. These files read like something out of the "The X Files", and are absolutely amazing and incontrovertible. In many of the cases, the data gleaned from the remote viewers was deemed so sensitive that the remote viewers received no feedback on their target. It would have been impossible for the viewers to fake the information.
Example one, a remote viewer targeting an unusually large structure spotted by satellite, found it housed under construction a huge submarine. The CIA was initially skeptical since the building was not near the water. The viewer, asked to look ahead in time, said that a rail line would be built within six months, from the building to the water in an attempt to circumvent American spy satellites. Within six months the rail was built and the existence of the Typhoon class ballistic missile submarine was confirmed.
Example two, the US Air Force tasked the Ft. Meade viewers with an unknown target with the intention of finding out if the "spooks" could ascertain any information about one of their most highly classified programs. The viewers took up the challenge. The remote viewer who did the session described a large bat-winged aircraft with no tail. The viewer also reported that there were light beams in the wiring of the plane, rather than electricity. When the Air Force received the report, they were aghast. The remote viewers were told they were forbidden to access that target again under penalty of court-martial. The aircraft was the B-2 Stealth Bomber. These are just two examples of the amazing abilities of these unsung American heroes.
Consider that the remote viewing program was under the scrutiny of not just one congressional oversight committee, but several. If it had been found to be non-viable, the program would not have lasted twenty years. Until recently, most of the program's files remained classified. Many still are.
The body of evidence supporting the existence of psychic phenomena is overwhelming. The debunkers and skeptics are in the minority now. I should know; I was one of them.
My association with remote viewing was a purely fortuitous one and began as the result of a project failure. Fortuitous is the polite term; it was purely a fluke, a shot in the dark.
"Synchronicity," Dr. Jung would say," Synchronicity."
Synchronicity, indeed.CHAPTER 2
Just begin and the mind grows heated – continue, and the task is completed!
In late 1992, I initiated a project to resurrect a formerly classified US Army program from the mid-80's code-named Trojan Warrior. This multi-disciplinary program was an outgrowth of the US Army's Task Force Delta. Task Force Delta, under a concept then known as Golden Sphere, was asked to find alternative "force multipliers" for the future battlefield. Since the U.S. military would never match the Soviet Union's huge army in numbers, they needed these force multipliers to make up the difference.
The primary force multiplier was the use of advanced technology. Developing superior equipment, however, did not address the human element. The U.S. Army wanted a technology that would make more capable soldiers. Trojan Warrior was one of the programs that were a result of the conclusions of Task Force Delta.
Trojan Warrior's concept was to teach a group of US Army Special Forces soldiers a carefully integrated set of mind-body integration techniques. I learned about the project just after the Rodney King riots had torn apart Los Angeles. It occurred to me that with some modifications, this program could address the deficiencies in training that had been at the heart of the King debacle. By that time, Trojan Warrior had been declassified. One of the instructors involved was Dr. Richard Heckler, a psychologist and Aikido instructor. He wrote about his experiences with the project in a book called In Search of the Warrior's Spirit. I had read the book and contacted Dr. Heckler to see if he would be interested in my idea. Dr. Heckler was intrigued and said that, coincidentally, a crime analyst in Colorado Springs had independently come up with the same idea. He suggested that I contact her to work together on the project. Dru, the crime analyst, was delighted with the idea and agreed we should work together to create Trojan Warrior II.
That started a four-year odyssey that was to end in disappointment. Although successful in putting together a multi-disciplinary team as talented as the original, with Dr. Heckler heading the instructors, we were unable to overcome the bureaucracy involved in getting the project funded. But the time I spent trying to get the project going was not in vain, as I received training in a number of the disciplines taught in the program. I also got a chance to work with several members of SEAL Team's One and Three, who had been chosen as guinea pigs for the project. Working out with these highly trained individuals gave me much more appreciation for the profoundly dedicated men and women of our armed forces.
The training I received in advanced EEG biofeedback enabled the success that I found in learning remote viewing. I still hope to recreate Trojan Warrior, but that remains for the future.
The failure to get the program funded hit me hard. My long-term relationship with the woman I was engaged to marry had also recently ended badly, in deceit and betrayal. Another blow came from one of my closest friends, who turned away from me when I needed support the most. These betrayals were devastating. I was forced to re-evaluate where I was, and even more importantly, where I was going. The sudden sense of urgency filled me with apprehension.
It was a very difficult time in my life. I was spiritually and emotionally bankrupt. It would be a stroke of fate that would send me in a new direction.
One afternoon, I happened into a local bookstore in Torrance, California. As I walked in the door, I noticed one of the books on the table of newly published hardbacks. It had a striking blue and black cover and the intriguing title of Psychic Warrior. As I looked at the cover, I thought this might be good for an entertaining read. The subtitle said that the book was about the CIA's Star Gate program. I was not familiar with it, but I was a fan of good science fiction, so I opened the book to read the inside flap. It was then that I realized this was not a work of fiction. It was a true story of an Army officer's involvement in the Pentagon's psychic spy program, detailing how he had become a "remote viewer" with the ability to extend his consciousness to other places across space and time and accurately report on what he experienced.
To say that I was shocked is an understatement. It wasn't the US government's involvement in psychic espionage, with a capital E-S-P, which surprised me the most. Nor was it that the CIA was giving new meaning to the word "spooks". It was the fact that the author, David A. Morehouse, not a natural psychic but a pragmatic special operations soldier, had been trained to be psychic. This went against everything that I believed about ESP. How could you train someone to be psychic when ESP didn't exist?
I bought the book and read it that night cover to cover. What I found was stunning: its implications would have very personal repercussions for me. The book detailed the adventures of Morehouse when he was assigned to the Star Gate program as a remote viewer. I was determined to learn more and to locate the author. I hoped to persuade him to teach me remote viewing. I did not know then that I would be undertaking the greatest adventure of my life.
It took almost two years to reach Dave Morehouse, as he was living in Europe. During that time I settled for researching everything I could on remote viewing. I read numerous articles and books on the subject, including some written by the military remote viewers themselves. The more I read about their exploits, the more intrigued I was with the subject.
In the spring of 1999, I spied an advertisement in a newspaper for a class on remote viewing taught at UCLA. I was delighted to discover that the instructor was none other than Dr. David Morehouse. I immediately called the number and signed up.
The five weeks before the class started finally meandered by and I found myself driving up the road to Kovel Commons on the beautiful tree-lined campus at UCLA. Arriving early, I parked my car and walked to the location of the classroom. I took my time, wanting to see the campus as well as enjoy the beautiful morning. There's almost never a shortage of sunshine in Los Angeles.
I considered what I was getting myself into as I walked along the tree-shaded sidewalk. I wanted to see for myself what remote viewing was all about. I wanted to know if it was real or, as the debunkers clamored, a fake or a delusion. If it was real, was it a useful tool, or just an amusement?
Everything I had discovered after reading Morehouse's book told me that remote viewing was a genuine phenomenon. I had studied the research done by Dr. Robert Jahn and his associate Brenda Dunne with the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research group (PEAR). They had set up extremely tight controls in their tests to explore the question, does ESP exist? They chose precognitive remote viewing in which a double-blind study examined whether or not subjects could describe a single target from a pool of targets. Neither the subject nor the researcher chosen to work with them had any idea what targets would be in the pool. A random number generator selected a target from a pool of ten. An independent judge would choose the correct one based on the description that the viewer provided. However, the target would not be chosen until after the viewing.
In other words, the viewer had to look ahead in time to see the correct target. In the dry words of the scientists, the results categorically were statistically significant. Jahn and Dunne did not select for subjects that appeared to do the best. They simply asked for volunteers for an experiment in extrasensory perception. They did not want psychics; they wanted people who were motivated.
Excerpted from A Sorcerer's Apprentice by John Herlosky. Copyright © 2015 John Herlosky. Excerpted by permission of Trine Day.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents
Author's Note ix
Prologue: 96 Hours 5
1 Beginnings 13
2 Background 19
3 CRV 23
4 The SEALs 35
5 ERV 47
6 God of War 61
7 Blindness 75
8 Flashbacks 91
9 Master Class 113
10 Eater 129
11 Remote Influencing 139
12 Omega 153
13 A Thousand Hours 175
14 The Vision 193
15 Schro dinger's Cat 201
16 Explorer's Class 215
17 Confirmation 235
18 Paradigm Lost 245