Is the Altered Calligraphy in Psychographed Texts a Medium’s Disguise or the Spirit’s Handwriting? Proposal for a Pilot Study Using Graphoscopy

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Marcelo Saad1 & Roberta de Medeiros2 
 1Spiritist Medical Association of São Paulo
, São Paulo (SP), Brazil 
2Universidade de Santo Amaro, São Paulo (SP), Brazil 

Introduction: Messages through psychography, also known as automatic writing, usually have different handwriting in each session. This is the unpublished perception of mediums and relatives participating in psychography seances. One can venture two possible explanations for this finding: (A) conventional materialistic reasoning: the medium produces and sustains a disguised handwriting with each new communication; or (B) unconventional spiritual premise: each spirit produces different calligraphy when driving the medium’s fist.  

Explanation (B) cannot be proven directly but its acceptance could be greater if the other proposal proves to be untenable. Indeed, Explanation (A) may be the least likely one since there are limits for handwrite disguising ability. Any attempt to overwrite the automatic writing motor program produces vicious movement patterns (Caligiuri & Mohammed, 2012). A graphotechnical analysis can point out inconsistencies of the disguise, as the writer inadvertently includes elements of one’s handwriting finer structure and some forger’s characteristics will “leak out” (Mirić & Aranđelović, 2020; Upadhyay & Chandravanshi, 2021).  

Some attempts to validate psychographed texts using graphoscopy are found in lay books and non-peer-reviewed journals. Although successful, they are often retrospective analyses on writings of the exceptional medium Chico Xavier (1910 – 2002), written in Portuguese (Oliveira, 2020; Henn, 2021). Chico was one of the very rare mechanical mediums, those who remain unconscious during trance; in these cases, the handwriting is almost identical to that of the deceased communicator. Today, some semi-mechanical mediums (conscious during the phenomenon) active in Brazil produce quite variable calligraphy, sometimes resembling the deceased’s ones.  

This ongoing research aims to document, through graphotechnic analysis, the level of variation of writing parameters in psychographed texts. The working hypothesis follows the spiritual premise that each text would have its own handwriting characteristics, different from one manuscript to another. 

Intended Methods: The whole process sequence and breakdown of each step are illustrated in Figure 1. A medium will carry out his usual psychography sessions at his habitual place; a researcher will be present at the sessions observing and registering the medium’s work. The time spent producing each text will be recorded; later, the word count will enable calculating the writing speed (words per minute). After authorized by the message recipient (usually a grieving relative), each text will be scanned right there to generate an image file for each page. The process will be repeated until the collected texts add up to ten; therefore, some sessions will be necessary.  

Further, strategic repetitive words will be clipped from the texts to serve as standards for the analyzes; the researcher will shuffle the words’ images and present them to another researcher. This participant, unaware of each word origin, will perform a graphotechnical analysis and will classify them according to specific writing parameters. After analyzing each word, they will be regrouped according to which psychography they came from. Then, each group of words will be investigated for two features: intra-textual convergence (internal writing parameters consistency in one text); and inter-textual convergence (writing parameters consistency between texts). 

Expected Results: If the working hypothesis is true, the high intra-textual and low inter-textual convergences will make the materialist reasoning almost unrealistic. Thus, the assumptions of the persistence of the self after death and the actuality of mediumnic interaction would gain strength.  

Elements for Further Discussion: External and internal factors affecting handwriting will be controlled for; the medium will work in his natural environment, and the calming preparation ritual probably buffers stress. If the medium shows a normal writing fluency, considering words per minute, it will decrease the suspicion of disguise. 

Caligiuri, M. P., & Mohammed, L. A. (2012) the neuroscience of handwriting: Applications for forensic document examination. CRC Press. ISBN-13: 978-1-4398-7141-6 

Henn, L. (2021). A admissibilidade da carta psicografada como meio de prova no Tribunal do Júri [Admissibility of the psychographed letter as a means of evidence in the Jury Court]. Completion work presented to the Law Course of the University of Santa Cruz do Sul to obtain the title of Bachelor of Laws.  

Mirić, F., & Aranđelović, D. R. (2020). Forensic expertise of signatures and handwriting – multidisciplinary approach. Facta Universitatis, Series: Law and Politics, 18(3), 207-212.  

Oliveira, S. B. (2020). A aplicação da psicografia como meio probatório no âmbito processual penal brasileiro [The application of psychography as a means of proof in the Brazilian criminal procedure]. Graduation Manuscript, Law – Bachelor, Universidade de Caxias do Sul, Brazil. 

Upadhyay, S., & Chandravanshi, L.P. (2021). Forensic examination of forensic expert’s disguise handwritings. Journal of Punjab Academy of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, 21(1), 114-117.  

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Marcelo Saad
Marcelo Saad Author

Marcelo Saad is a physician, board-certified in acupuncture. He has a doctorate in Rehabilitation Sciences by the Federal University of S. Paulo (Brazil). He is current director of the Spiritist-Medical Association of SãoS. Paulo. Besides his work as a physician in private practice, he is also engaged in scientific publication, editorial collaborations with journals and books, technical lectures, and scholar tasks. His primary interest fields are:religiosity in healthcare, anomalous phenomena of consciousness, and spiritual therapies.

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