James Randi --- Wizard (
25 May 1997 16:47:39 -0000

This is a response to a Therapeutic Touch (TT) practitioner who has
insisted upon sending me endless documents rather than just agreeing
to do the test. She has written me:

"If you are willing to LISTEN and learn,
reply, if not, do not respond to me in
your manner again."

My response:

Gee, I'm really sorry, but I only have one "manner," and that's
direct, factual, brief, and rational. Does that offend you?

Get this straight, once and for all: I'm not here to be commanded or
to be instructed. I'm offering a substantial prize that you can have
if you establish the FUNDAMENTAL CLAIM of TT:

(1) that there is a Human Energy Field,

and (2) that TT practitioners can detect the Human Energy Field.

A sure indicator of quacks, pseudoscientists, perpetual motion machine
inventors, and psychic, is seen when they insist upon giving long
lectures about their theories and histories, and want long, involved
protocols to establish very simple, direct, phenomena.

I'm not playing games, and I'm getting very weary of catering to
petulant prima donnas who won't answer simple, direct questions. If
you want to try for the $1.1 million prize, which you can use for
anything you wish -- including feeding hungry children, supporting
AIDS research, promoting Therapeutic Touch, housing homeless people --
just follow the easy requirements, make an appointment, demonstrate
that the Human Energy Field actually exists and that you can detect
it, and collect the money.

I get some 40 to 60 messages a day. I've no time to spend begging you
to accept the prize. Just do it, and collect. I won't feed your ego,
only to have you eventually decline to do the test. And of course,
you can conveniently decide to be offended by my directness as a
reason to get miffed and use that as an excuse to refuse to be tested.
Why do I get the feeling that you will opt for this "out"?

Ms. E., TT is worthless. It's a pseudoscientific bit of claptrap that
feeds the egos of those who claim to have the "power." The
inescapably basic claim of TT is that there exists a "field" that is
detectable by the gifted practitioners, thousands of whom charge
helpless and uninformed patients for this useless song-and-dance

I'm wrong? Well, I've bet $1,100,000 that I'm right. Prove me wrong,
and collect. But don't beat around the bush and contnue to make
offended noises. Do it or go away, so that responsible, dedicated,
persons can step up to replace you.

What's your answer? Yes, or no?

James Randi

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