Current Update as of September 19, 2005
Inspired by The Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies
Edited by HENRY REED, Ph.D.
(Hampton Roads Publishing Company)
Book Summary by Michael Lynch
Between the Foreword and the Preface to his book, Joseph McMoneagle gives a very clear and very specific definition of what constitutes the protocol of remote viewing (RV). He is equally explicit about what does not qualify as remote viewing.
For him, the key ingredient is the scientific research method known as double-blind. In the context of RV it means that neither the remote viewer, nor anyone else in the same room as the remote viewer, can have any knowledge of the specific target of the viewing.
This must remain true before and during the remote viewing for it to be valid. McMoneagle acknowledges that some methods of training remote viewers may violate this protocol, but he stresses that only true double-blind occurrences should be labeled remote viewing.
The book itself begins with a description of Joe's childhood, which was less than happy. Both of his parents were alcoholics, and his mother was abusive. But Joe traces his psychic talents to this abuse.
He learned to read his mother in order to anticipate her moods and behavior. It was also during repetitive abuse that he developed the ability to disassociate himself from his body and from his surroundings.
When he was sixteen, Joe had a strong memory of one of his aunts wearing a white straw hat and holding him as baby outside, in strong sunlight. The aunt thought that he must have made up the memory, since she never owned a white straw hat.
Some time later, she came across a photo of herself holding Joe and his twin sister as babies, and wearing a white straw hat in the sunlight. She was stunned, as she recalled that a friend had lent her the hat because it was so sunny that day.
This experience triggered many more very vivid and very early memories for Joe. One of the earliest and most vivid was the memory of faceless men in white suits with large eyes taking him into a room and driving spikes through his arms causing extreme pain.
He later told his parents about it and his mother was shocked - he had in fact had major corrective surgery when he was very, very young.
In those days, doctors erred on the side of giving too little anesthesia to babies rather than too much; they assured his mother that he would never remember any of the pain.. Clearly, they had been wrong.
Joe's twin sister had similar experiences to his, but they both kept them secret for many years. One day when he came home from school bloody and beaten up, his father refused to let him in the door saying, "I'll let you in when you have blood on your hands."
Joe went back and found one of his assailants and beat him severely. His father explained that it wasn't about winning or losing, but rather that the bullies understand that they would be hurt any time they attacked him. Throughout high school, Joe relied on intuition to help him avoid problems and stay out of trouble.
Still, he did get arrested once for beating up the leader of a gang that had assaulted his sister. However, once the cop understood what had happened and why, he gave Joe the option of studying karate with him instead of going to jail.
Joe tried College but quickly decided it wasn't for him. He was determined to leave Florida, and joined the Army. He was recruited by Army Intelligence and sent to Massachusetts to learn Morse Code.
This proved to be difficult, and one day he got drunk intending to miss class, which would have meant being sent immediately to Southeast Asia.
Instead, he forgot his own plan and went to class, where the alcohol relaxed him so much that his Morse Code scores improved dramatically. He ended up being sent to the Bahamas, quite close to Florida despite his original intent.
In fact he was briefly reassigned to Homestead Air Force Base in Florida, before being sent to Vietnam anyway. He feels that during his tour in Vietnam, his intuition saved his life numerous times, and that the experience improved his psychic abilities.
Joe left Vietnam, got married to Sue and was sent to Germany. He did comfortable duty for about a year, then volunteered for border duty, which involved long days of often stressful work.
It was there that he had his first near-death experience (NDE). In a restaurant, someone spikes his drink and when he goes outside for air, he falls. He describes the classic features of an NDE: a tunnel with a bright white light; a feeling of overwhelming joy, followed by a life review ; then sorrow; and finally forgiveness.
While recuperating in a hospital, Joe began having out-of-body experiences (OBEs) and he also has some episodes of telepathy. He decides to keep quiet about everything, to make sure that they will let him out of the hospital. Joe notes that once you've had an NDE, your life is changed.
He soon is spending a good bit of his time reading great philosophers, religious texts, and other spiritual works. He notes that he knows who spiked his drink in Germany, but he has chosen not to reveal their identity nor to seek revenge.
After the difficult times in Germany , Joe opts to leave his wife in Miami so she could be near her family and friends while he attends school for four months. He is briefly assigned to Virginia and is thus able to be with Sue when their son Scott is born. His next assignment is Thailand.
Working in Thailand was very bad, but for security reasons he cannot say just what he did. Nevertheless, the time he spent with the mountain people in a small village expanded his views of the supernatural.
Years later in Virginia, after his 2nd open-heart surgery, one of his nurses turns out to be from that same small village.
Thailand was also where he had his second NDE. Joe felt sick, but the Army doctor there treated everyone and everything with a large dose of penicillin. He continued to get more and more ill until finally a drinking buddy flew him to Bangkok, where it was discovered he had Hepatitis B.
Some Buddhist nuns helped him regain his strength; this was followed by two years of a very strict diet. When he returns home from Bangkok he realizes that his wife has been seeing someone else. He decides to take her back to Germany to try and forget the past and make amends.
He focuses most of his free time on his son, Scott. Despite his efforts, one day he comes home to find Sue has packed and is taking their son back to America. He cites this as yet another example of a psychic's inability to pick up signs or clues related to one's self.
Joe feels that although Sue left him, took their son, and sued him for divorce and for custody, he shares responsibility for the break-up because he put her in harm's way and required her to live in very difficult circumstances.
He tried in vain to get himself transferred back to America to work things out. When that failed, he turned to heavy drinking. During this time he met his second wife, Peggy. At first they were just good drinking buddies, but soon became involved.
Joe relates their drinking experience one Oktoberfest evening during which he has a complete blackout and wakes up with no memory of where he is, where his money went, or where his car is. He says that this scares him into cutting back his drinking.
Peggy decides not to re-enlist, and after a brief visit to the States returns to Germany and moves in with McMoneagle. They are married as soon as his divorce from Sue becomes final.
Joe decides to change his primary military occupational specialty (MOS) from military intelligence to physical security/counterintelligence. This is partly to regain some stability in his home life, and partly due to his disappointment at being denied promotion to Warrant Officer for a third time.
He points out that changing one's primary MOS is a big deal in the Army, considered an almost traitorous act. Joe soon discovers that his intuition can play a major role in being successful at this new MOS. During this time he earns a Meritorious Service Medal.
Next he is reassigned to Fort Bragg NC. Joe believes this assignment to be retaliation for changing his MOS. Knowing just how the Army works, he discovers that specialists in Chinese are in very short supply.
He is thus able to finagle orders to go to Monterey, California to study Mandarin Chinese instead of Fort Bragg. Rather than lose him altogether, the head of his MOS re-considers the situation and decides to promote him to Warrant Officer after all.
Instead of Monterey, he becomes a senior projects officer in Signals Intelligence. He spends six grueling months learning all about computers and passes his test, despite having no previous automated data processing experience.
In October, 1978 Joe's boss tells him to report that afternoon to an unused room in the building - his boss said he did not know anything more about it. There he met two military intelligence officers who asked him to review some documents and respond to what they contained.
The documents described efforts by other countries in the area of psychic training. McMoneagle responded that if the description of these programs was even 50% accurate, they should definitely be investigated.
Some weeks later he was invited to attend a larger meeting of individuals who had apparently given similarly satisfactory answers to his.
To put things in context, Joe then gives a brief but very persuasive description of just how complex and prestigious his current job is.
In essence, he and one civilian basically are responsible for all operational aspects (research and design, manufacture, distribution etc.) of what is the equivalent of a large, multi-national corporation.
Furthermore, the global mission of this 'corporation' is to assist in the defense of the free world. It is a plum job with a fairly certain and rewarding future.
He paints this picture to make us fully aware of just what it was he eventually gave up to pursue remote viewing for the Army.
McMoneagle then describes the 1977 issue of a CIA newsletter written by Dr. Kenneth Kress discussing experiments in remote viewing being conducted at Stanford Research Institute (now SRI). We are introduced to two early remote viewers, Pat Price and Ingo Swann.
Back at the larger meeting, there were more documents addressing specific psychic threats from other countries. Anyone who was uncomfortable with the materials was allowed to leave; the remaining participants were then met by scientists from SRI.
They were all shown a movie of Pat Price demonstrating remote viewing; then individual interviews were conducted.
McMoneagle was somewhat guarded in most of his answers, but when he was asked directly if he had ever had a paranormal experience, his intuition told him to relate his first NDE along with various clairvoyant experiences since then. He also agreed to be tested.
McMoneagle disagrees with the assessment by many that his NDE is the only or even the primary cause of his belief in the paranormal and of his psychic talents.
He acknowledges that it is a major factor, but notes that people are very complex; their beliefs come from many different experiences.
Weeks later he was sent to California - still without his superior's knowledge of what he was actually doing - to do his first RV test. He scored extremely high in his first six sessions, and reported to the RV project office at Ft. Meade, MD.
His first session there did not go well at all and he began to have doubts about his abilities. In fact, his first 24 attempts at RV were unsuccessful! But on his 25th attempt he thought he heard a noise that didn't seem to be in the same room he was in.
That, combined with other images develops into a fairly accurate description of his target, which is a fire department; the noise he had heard was the fire alarm. From then on he improved with each session.
In time the project -- dubbed Star Gate -- gained access to two condemned buildings at Fort Meade, which they renovated into offices and rooms for remote viewing. At this point the work was still part-time, off-duty and on weekends.
Soon the Pentagon began to take notice and request more viewings of targets. McMoneagle describes one instance of the Pentagon attempting to throw him off by showing him a photo of a hangar, surrounded by aircraft and asking him to describe what was inside the hangar.
This was a serious violation of protocol - seeing the building and the aircraft beforehand would interfere with his remote viewing. Nevertheless, he persisted and ended up accurately describing the prototype tank (i.e., not an airplane at all) that was inside the hangar.
But as the targets from the Pentagon became more of an operational nature, the pressure on the viewers to produce accurate information with little notice and in a great hurry began to increase dramatically. Aggravating this stress was the fact that he could not discuss the work with his wife Peggy.
About this time, as a personal experiment with something less stressful than his normal targets, he decided to test viewing an event that had not yet occurred - the time and location of Skylab's re-entry into the earth's atmosphere. His prediction is within six days and sixty kilometers of when and where the re-entry occurred!
The Army soon decided that other agencies will be allowed to assign tasks to the group, and they backed it up with some funding.
This meant that the work would be full-time and McMoneagle was faced with the difficult decision of either giving up remote viewing entirely, or permanently leaving his other position, thus destroying any career path he had with the Army.
As noted above, he chose to continue with RV.
One member of the Star Gate team, Scotty, was fairly skeptical about RV, and he often tried to stump Joe with impromptu tests. After Joe passed several such tests dramatically, Scotty stopped.
But Joe appreciated his skepticism because it kept everyone honest and helped prove the truth of what they were doing.
This is followed by a brief description of how targeting worked. Multiple viewers might see the same target multiple times; the material was never used alone.
Joe's long commute, often aggravated by weather and/or traffic caused problems at home. He felt like he couldn't move closer because the project was only funded on a year-to-year basis.
Due to the secret nature of his job, his superiors were unable to tell the Army exactly what he did - this meant he was essentially removed from any normal sort of promotion ladder, regardless of his success.
In November, 19798 he was called to the office very early and told not to watch, listen to, or read any news. He later learned that American hostages had been taken in Tehran. He and the other remote viewers were tasked with this same target every day for months on end.
This is very hard to keep up - in addition to sensing the suffering of the hostages, it becomes increasingly difficult to distinguish what you are viewing remotely now from what you may have seen before.
Still, the results from all of the remote viewers during this time was highly accurate and comprehensive; it even included extra information about related sites and people that had not been specifically targeted.
Some descriptions were so precise that a hostage who was given an early release for medical reasons was convinced that there must have been U.S. agents inside the embassy the whole time.
The viewers continued to avoid all media coverage of events, which adversely affected their social lives. Also, they continued to get assignments from other agencies un-related to Iran.
In 1980 the viewers accidentally began to see and report on the preparations for the rescue mission. At first the Army was alarmed, but soon tasked the group with following the progress of the rescue.
One viewer was actually conducting a session when the rescue failed - she saw the fire and destruction. This had a devastating effect on all of the viewers. Two viewers left the team around this time, but the work assignments continued to increase.
In December, 1981 Joe was tasked to locate Brigadier General Dozier, who had been kidnapped by the Red Brigades in Italy. Unfortunately, the Italian police had gotten a number of false leads from many psychics, and so they stopped paying attention to psychic information, including that from McMoneagle and his colleagues.
On Christmas Eve of that year, a frustrated McMoneagle determined that he was going to help the General. During his viewing session that evening, he felt like he was strongly connected to an accurate source of information. He drew a detailed map and even noted that the General was being held on the second floor of a building.
He learned much later that all of his information had been extremely accurate, but due to continued skepticism on the part of Italian authorities, it had never been used.
Dozier was eventually rescued weeks later; on seeing Joe's report he was so impressed with its accuracy that he recommended that in the future officers be trained in what to think about if they are ever captured - he had recognized that Joe had in fact tapped into his thoughts while he was being held.
Joe next describes his remote viewing of an extremely large, double-hulled submarine being built by the Soviets. Everyone at the NSC, where the task had originated, was convinced that a new assault ship was being built - no-one believed that it was a submarine.
But Joe and another viewer had repeatedly and clearly seen a submarine. Much later the existence of just such a submarine was confirmed. Although no-one at the NSC or the CIA would ever acknowledge it, Joe points out that in this case, remote viewing had in fact produced intelligence of national significance that no other source could produce.
However, 1981 was a stressful year for Joe, due to increased stresses at work and while commuting. This stress, combined with a lack of exercise began to take its toll on him. He was also suffering from crushed vertebrae as the result of a Vietnam-era helicopter crash.
He experienced severe pain and numbness throughout the left side of his body, but noticed that he could still do remote viewing successfully. In fact, he deliberately began to practice his remote viewing in the face of his pain and many other distractions, flaunting the increasingly strict rules that were being imposed on his team.
He reasoned that if RV was to be of any use in combat situations, it had to be possible to do it under stressful circumstances.
Nevertheless, his condition declined to the point that an Army doctor wanted to discharge him for medical reasons. Joe knew that this would greatly affect his pension.
He obtained some pain medication and managed to pass the Army physical and avoid discharge. During the test, especially the running portion, he reports using meditation to disassociate himself from the pain and persevere through it.
Meanwhile, the team were being assigned more and more tasks, but there were only two remote viewers left, Joe and a man named Ken.
A new boss managed to get two new recruits fresh out of Army intelligence school; they were sent to SRI for training. Although Joe was and remains somewhat skeptical that such training is possible, at the time he welcomed any additional help in remote viewing.
Around this time Joe miraculously avoids a serious accident on the Washington beltway and consequently asks to be relocated to the base at Fort Meade.
His request is granted and this is good for him, but it soon causes his wife to quit her job rather than face a similarly brutal commute in the opposite direction. His marriage continues to suffer.
Joe learns a little about the training methods being used on the new recruits and has great difficulty understanding how they might work. He is concerned because the people conducting the training sessions have knowledge about the target - he feels that this knowledge might somehow be transmitted to the viewers.
He also wonders how the viewers will do in real operations, when their monitor knows nothing about the target. He tries discussing his concerns with the new recruits and with his boss, but is soon told to cease all such discussions.
After another attempt to debunk this training-by-rote method, he is forbidden to talk to the recruits about anything at all. He continues as the sole remote viewer, working on two to three targets per day.
In 1983, a colleague invites him to The Monroe Institute (TMI) whose owner/founder practiced regular out-of-body travel.
Unbeknownst to Joe, his colleague's goal was for Joe to learn to control the out-of-body experiences he'd had since his 1970 NDE.
He suggested that Joe try to get the Army to send him to the Gateway Seminar at TMI, which Joe does successfully. At the Seminar he listens to tapes intended to make him a better remote viewer.
Joe says the tapes helped him to sleep better and to be more relaxed, which in turn had some positive effect on his viewing.
Joe buys some property near TMI and begins construction of a log cabin there, but his wife Peggy is not enthusiastic about the idea.
After they had not seen each other for nine years, Joe's son calls, and asks if he can come live with Joe & Peggy.
Joe realized that his own troubled relationship with Peggy, combined with his being stressed by being overworked would not make for a good environment for Scott, and so he discourages him from coming.
Scott takes this hard and returns Joe's letter explaining things un-opened.
Joe proposes further visits to TMI - three-day weekends for a period of three months. While the visits are useful, it puts even more strain on his marriage. Then one of the two new recruits sickens and stops his training.
Joe realizes that he is nearing eligibility for retirement and that neither of the new recruits has ever done an operational remote viewing.
Through trial and error, Bob Monroe at TMI creates a tape tailored especially for Joe, with dramatic results, as Joe begins to learn how to control his out-of-body experiences.
At one point a colleague accompanies him and asks him to do a remote viewing while at TMI. Apparently the target is the surface of Mars; Joe refers readers to his book Mind Trek for more details of this viewing.
Joe reports on his TMI experiences and before long headquarters asks him to develop a TMI program for a larger group of selected officers.
This troubles Joe; he is concerned that certain types of people could actually be hurt by TMI's techniques. Two large groups of officers go through the program without incident.
In the third group, a participant is added at the last minute who has not been truthful in answering the introductory questionnaire. He has a bad reaction and is taken to Walter Reed Medical Center.
Joe decides to put in for retirement but this causes yet another rift in his marriage as Peggy assumes they will move to St. Louis to be near her family, while Joe plans to move to his new property near TMI.
Joe realizes that he has been keeping this second marriage together at all costs to atone for what he considered his failures in his first marriage.
Joe has more problems with the Army due to his long-term assignment outside his primary MOS. His superior takes the steps necessary to protect him under a sort of protective intelligence umbrella, which essentially makes him disappear from the Department of the Army.
Joe cannot reveal what his targets consisted of during this time, but he quotes from several of his evaluations to prove that his work was of great value to the U.S intelligence community and that his targets were of interest at the highest levels of government.
Joe proposes the creation of a computer database to track remote viewing activities, and it is approved. He is authorized to purchase the equipment and he begins to design and code the entire system by himself.
Although he feels strongly that it will not work, Joe participates in a whirlwind world-wide tour to identify new viewers. He reiterates that he doesn't agree with the training methods being used. He also notes that some of the new recruits refuse to work within the RV protocol.
Joe quotes Tom, the remaining recruit, as saying that although the training method seemed to work it never feels like he (Tom) is going out to get the information, but rather that the information is somehow coming to him.
Joe submits his retirement request, but his commander believes he can convince Joe to stay and his request is shredded. Joe is offered rank and money to stay, but he is adamant.
Joe schedules another Gateway seminar at TMI. At this one he experiences a visit from an Indian deity named Karanja. He suddenly remembers that she also visited him years before when he was at a cub scout camp.
During that first visit, which he has just remembered, they discussed his future life in some detail. McMoneagle is not sure just who this woman is - he believes she may simply be some part of himself who manifests on rare occasions.
Nevertheless, he does extensive research into her name. Some time later in a San Francisco museum he sees a small Hindu deity named Kiranja who closely resembles his visitor - her name means bearer of light.
It is also at this seminar that Joe becomes friends with Nancy Honeycutt, who will eventually become his third wife.
Joe describes an extremely odd incident wherein a Walter Reed doctor accuses Joe of unprovoked assault. He names and describes Joe perfectly, but Joe has an airtight alibi, and is exonerated. The incident remains a mystery.
Joe's dog attacks Nancy's dogs and he decides he must give his dog away for the sake of his blossoming relationship with her. This is painful, but he finds the dog a good home. He also convinces himself to attempt a third committed relationship.
At his retirement he is presented with the Legion of Merit award. Soon after he retires, funding for the project begins to dry up. Joe tries to get work at SRI, but gets no response.
When he finally manages to meet with SRI personnel, he is told that his former agency has spread the word that his remote viewing requires a special kind of monitoring, which makes him difficult to work with.
He convinces SRI to hire him on a trial basis, and this soon turns into regular work. Around this time Joe and Nancy get married.
Joe describes his new team at SRI and how much fun most of them are to work with. He also says that his results were much better when viewing was fun, as opposed to when it was a required task.
Joe then describes how SRI was operating at the time - they would identify individuals who had demonstrated some talent, test them further, then choose those who consistently had high test scores for further experiments.
Although the identification and testing phases were costly and time-consuming the resulting experiments were producing dramatic results. He also has high praise for the lab's commitment to the double-blind standard.
While boating with his wife, Joe has a heart attack, but tells Nancy that it's only his back giving him pain. He believes he is dying, but wants to be completely aware of the process this time, unlike during his first NDE.
On the way to the hospital he is again able to set aside the extreme pain he is feeling and remain lucid. However, in spite of his efforts to stay aware, he remembers almost nothing of his experience upon their arrival at the hospital.
He recovers slowly for several days, then has open-heart surgery. He goes on to note that he has had four additional heart attacks. While recovering he writes another book - as yet unpublished.
He begins to do operational viewing from Virginia, where he & Nancy are designing and building their dream house. During discussion of the house construction, Joe notes that remote viewing must be balanced by physical activity to be successful.
He then gives a detailed description of his participation in experiments with remote viewing during lucid dreaming conducted at SRI. He is attached to a number of electrical monitors, then goes to sleep.
While dreaming, he is supposed to become conscious of the fact that he is dreaming and alerts his handlers that he is alert by deliberately moving his eyes in a pre-agreed manner. At that point, a target is randomly chosen by his handlers and he is supposed to travel in his dream to the target.
Once he is familiar with the target, he again alerts his handlers, who wake him up, whereupon he describes the target. Although at first this appears to work very well, Joe is shaken by several incidents where he believes he has woken up and given his report, only to discover that he is in fact still asleep.
He continues to participate in many experiments, as well as work on some operational targets, including several major terrorist incidents, the details of which are still classified.
Meanwhile, the Army project which he had left was transferred to the Defense Intelligence Agency. Repeated efforts by SRI to work with DIA staff never seem to go anywhere, although they continue to share information with DIA whenever they think it appropriate.
The lab also acquires a Scientific Oversight Committee (including two Nobel laureates) to continue to ensure that their methods are valid and that strict adherence to the protocols is always observed.
In 1990, the lab separates from SRI and becomes part of Science Applications International Corporation, (SAIC). Joe then describes some experiments with targeting an agent - identified only by social security number - tracking his movements and describing where he goes and what he sees. He achieves some good successes in this endeavor.
In 1992 Joe publishes Mind Trek. In 1995, the Star Gate program is exposed by the TV program Nightline. As a result, Joe gets some business customers, but again cannot reveal who they are nor what he was asked to do.
He does states that in all his remote viewing activities over a 23-year period, he has consistently achieved approximately 70% accuracy. In addition to investment support and locating natural resources, his company sometimes assists in finding missing persons.
However, this is often difficult due to (somewhat understandable) reluctance on the part of authorities to trust the information. Joe prefers to work with authorities who know what he is capable of and who will trust his information.
In 1995 Joe agrees to be tested on live TV. To his delight, the program is serious and the producers follow the protocol properly.
He successfully demonstrates his abilities, and later on astonishes the crew by admitting that he remotely viewed all four of the possible targets the night before they were randomly chosen, and obviously before the final target was selected.
Joe next spends a chapter debunking the American Institutes for Research (AIR) report. The AIR was commissioned by the CIA to study the remote viewing research then available.
However, the AIR panel did not have clearance to review most of the work done by Joe's group, nor did they interview any long-time remote viewer.
The AIR report essentially says that remote viewing has not been proven to work operationally - Joe disagrees vehemently, and his book is evidence to the contrary.
Then Joe goes on Nightline to defend his views. He points out that he has never violated his security agreements. He continues to discuss Star Gate as openly and honestly as he legally can, despite attacks from the media and from others in government.
He defends the cost of the project (estimated at $20 million over 18 years) as well worth it given the value provided, including many lives saved.
He goes on to describe numerous successful demonstrations of remote viewing on television, both here and abroad, as well as a few failures, some due to protocol violations by the producers.
The book ends with Joe admitting that he never really wanted to write this particular book, as it reveals his personal experiences and thoughts.
But he appreciates the things he discovered in the process, and he leaves us with a number of questions that he still has about the nature and value of psychic abilities and their uses.
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