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Durra Kadiragha & Imants Baruss
Department of Psychology King’s University College at Western University, London, Ontario, Canada
Introduction: After-death communication (ADC) with cell phones is a phenomenon in which instrumental transcommunication occurs on mobile devices. Our study has recruited a sample of 21 people who have experienced this phenomenon and asked them to answer a 95-item questionnaire regarding their experiences. What our research was trying to investigate is the nature of ADC using cell phones, the mechanisms through which the communication occurs, variations of the incidences, as well as how extensive the phenomenon is. The questionnaire detailed different aspects of the incidences to pin-point patterns, common reoccurrences and to begin the exploration of these occurrences in hopes of understanding their nature and how they can possibly be replicated. On June 25th, 2020 our questionnaire, consisting of 3 measures, was posted onto the ITC group on Facebook. The 95-item survey was sent out specifically to this Facebook group as its members identify as frequent practitioners of instrumental transcommunication using numerous devices, ultimately sharing their results and experiences with the rest of the group.
Participants: Participants consisted of 21 individuals recruited from posting our debrief form on the ITC Facebook group page on June 25th, 2020. There were 16 women and 5 men (N= 21), 16 of them were over 55 years old.
Materials: A consent letter was provided to the participants. It included a description of the study and detailed the potential risks and discomforts associated with it, the benefits, anonymity and right to withdraw at any time.
Measures: Three measures were included in the study, which were 6 demographics question, an After-Death Communication Questionnaire developed by the researchers, and Carol Ryff’s Scales of Psychological Well-Being. The After-Death Communication Questionnaire consisted of 41 Likert type items varying from “strongly disagree” to “strongly agree” regarding the nature of ADC via cellphone devices, along with the impact of these instances on the individual and their perception of the sender and experience. Carol Ryff’s Scales of Psychological Well-Being questionnaire was used as a measure of psychological well-being of the participants, looking into 6 different areas of well-being measured by the Ryff inventory, which are Autonomy, Environmental Mastery, Personal Growth, Positive Relations with Others, Purpose in Life, and Self-Acceptance. Each one of these items was scored on a six-point Likert scale, ranging from “strongly disagree” to “strongly agree” (Ryff & Keyes, 1995).
Results: Findings show our participants scored higher on the Personal Growth scale of the Ryff inventory than the norm, (df = 8504, t = 2.969, p =0.0015). This finding is statistically significant and suggests that our participants have a greater interest in self-development and openness to new experiences. As well, different mechanisms of after-death communication were reported by our participants through self-assessment measures. The most frequent of these mechanisms were telephone calls, photos or videos showing up on cell phones, text messages, non-vocal sounds during telephone calls or on voicemail, and voice during telephone calls. Our study also includes participants descriptions of their experiences, which will be shown in the presentation.
Discussion: The findings of our study highlight the different types of mechanisms through which after-death communication can occur on cell phones. This changes the perception of after-death communication and suggests that communication can occur with regular cellphones without the need for creating dedicated EVP and ITC devices.
Ryff, C., & Keyes, C. (1995). The structure of psychological well-being revisited. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 69, 719–727.