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Magicians Debunk Religious “Miracles”


Girl wiith Blindfold Demonstrates Sighlless ReadingTwo well known magicians, Harry Monti and John Apperson, are both Past National Presidents of The Society of American Magicians. Recently they joined with other St. Louis S.A.M. members to debunk a parlor trick that was being used to convince audience members of a spiritual, religious power. The exposure caused the magicians to be kicked out of the venue and have a conversation with the local police.

The followers of Nithyananda promised a demonstration of “Super Human Powers” at the meeting in that St. Louis Public Library. Nithyananda is a self-professed “living avatar,” and has exported his spiritual teachings across the world. However, lawsuits and reports in the India Times indicate that he heads a vast network of charities, shell companies and for-profit businesses. Nithyananda has been accused of using the guise of charity to avoid paying taxes on some very lucrative profits.

The first step of the demonstration requires two fuzzy pads the size of coasters, which the nine-year-old girl holds in place over her eyes. Behind her, the girl’s mother, Mahant Ma Shivajnana, readies a blindfold. She places it over her daughters eyes and then puts another layer of blindfold on her. Almost immediately the girl reaches up with both hands to reposition the padding beneath the layers of fabric. This movement creates a gap that she can see through.

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The girl proceeds  to read business cards and things written on a whiteboard, even though she’s blindfolded. This is when the magicians stepped in to expose the charlatan. This only ended up with them being kicked out of the library and talking to the local police.

Read the full story about the encounter here.

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