The practice of manipulating psychic energy has come in many different forms throughout the history of the world. From Ki Gong practitioners manipulating psychic energy for advantages in combat to Yogis activating inner energies to lead to enlightenment there have been many forms and uses for the manipulation of psychic energy. Many of the practices we consider magic are simply a manipulation of energy. All of these require a great amount of work from the practitioner. Some require years of meditation and concentrated study in order to reach even a basic practical use of the technique. It is no wonder that those that master these techniques are highly regarded individuals.
Psionics seeks to achieve results by using electronic and other devices to focus and amplify psychic energy. The founder, Dr. Albert Abrams, originally discovered the method through working with patients. He noticed that having a patient facing different directions caused different sounds when he tapped his stomach. After this observation, Dr. Abrams got the idea of studying the noises coming from tapping the stomach to see if there was any relation to that and the different diseases that were common. Through his study, he noted that the sounds were indeed different, until there came a day that he found the same sound for two different diseases. Up until that point he had been using a length of wire attached to two aluminum disks. One of the disks was attached to an assistant’s forehead using a rubber band and the other was held over samples of tissue with different diseases. Upon finding the same sound for different diseases Dr. Abrams compared the energies using a three dial resistance box. He cut the wire and reattached it to the leads on the box. Adjusting the dials allowed him to see that the sounds were in fact very different.
Dr. Abrams spent the next fourteen years researching his findings until he died. He even invented a device to simulate a stomach in order to combat a lack of volunteers to stand all day and have their stomachs tapped on. This all lead to what would be called psionics, though what Dr. Abrams used is known as radionics. Radionics in essence is the use psionic devices for healing purposes. There are three basic principles to psionics: if it exists it can be known, if it can be known then it can be studied, if it can be studied it can be manipulated. Following these principles, the method of psionics is to gather information and then manipulating that energy to achieve a result. This is similar to other older energy manipulation techniques because there is a focal point that is concentrated on. However, there is one key difference. In psionics, the user can set up the machine to amplify the necessary patterns to achieve the results. After the machine is set, the person no longer has to concentrate on the manipulation. The machine does the concentration on its own.
This has led to some saying that it is a lazier practice than the others, but there is an even further simplification of the process. Science fiction publisher John W. Campbell practiced radionics and was fascinated by a device known as The Hieronymous Machine. Campbell coined the term Psionics, short for Psychic Electronics, and wrote of the effectiveness of the machines in his publications. One day, Campbell found that his Hieronymous machine still worked, even when unplugged from the power source. He then, determined that the machine may not be entirely necessary, and did another experiment. He drew a block diagram of the machine with india ink on paper, connected with thread and wired to a single dial, and reported that the symbolic machine worked just as well as the full machine. This was an extreme simplification of the ideas behind radionics. Campbell said as much in his writing afterward, claiming that his model simplified and streamlined it to the ultimate. His reports on it suggested that he couldn’t tell a difference between using the machine and using just his drawings.
Naturally this was the cause for much debate. Initially there was resistance to believing that the practice could work without the machine. Psionics is just that belief. The Psionic Theory is that psionic devices are simply symbols. Akin to the rituals of magicians and shamans, wizards and witches, the tools are just a symbol of the practice. Psionic devices are just a modernized version of staffs and magic wands. Psionics believe that the devices simply aid in the projection of their intent to manipulate energy. Psionic researchers also claim that the mechanical devices are not required. They insist that similar effects may be obtained by using graphic representations of the devices. This has become known as the virtual psionic concept.
However, many still believe that some of the devices are somewhat necessary to extract the true power of the practice. While they agree that results can be achieved without using the physical devices, they say that there is an obvious difference in the effects on the energies when actual mechanical devices are used. They tend to use a combination of the diagrams and some physical items like condensers, resistors, coils, antennas, prisms, lenses, mirrors or crystals. To these individuals, just being a virtual psionic is only scratching at the surface of the potential of the practice. There is no consensus on how much or how little the physical devices matter, but there is a consensus among users that psionics is a very valid practice. Though it was originally used as a method of healing, it has been discovered to work on any psychic influence. This means that it can be used to influence energy in any way one sees fit.
Note: Additional information about the Hieronymous Machine can be found with a simple Google word search.