Sensorium

A Quest to Understand Extraordinary Experiences of Sense

Conversations With Kreskin

The Amazing Kreskin reveals more of his synesthetic experience in new book

Conversations with Kreskin
The Amazing Kreskin's new book features art by Joe St. Pierre.
Courtesy The Amazing Kreskin
The Amazing Kreskin correctly predicted that President Barack Obama would be re-elected a full 18 months before Nov. 6 -- sealing his written answer in a locked safe on the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Show at NBC. http://www.latenightwithjimmyfallon.com/video/the-amazing-kreskin-part-1-11-7-12/1423260/ I'm just as interested that he reveals more about his synesthesia in a new book which launched today in Midtown Manhattan.

The legendary mentalist chose Patsy's Italian Restaurant to launch his eighteenth book: Conversations With Kreskin. The man with 80 appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson likes the restaurant that always stayed open on Thanksgiving so that Frank Sinatra would have a place to eat. It was great to catch up with one of the world's most famous "synnies."

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Among the friends and journalists present was Roger Ailes, chairman of Fox News and Fox Television Stations, who wrote the foreword to the book. It was co-authored by Michael McCarty and features an eight-page full color comic art insert by illustrator Joe St. Pierre.

The longtime performer, who according to David Letterman is "the best mentalist in the world, and he's not acting," addresses his rare brain trait on pages 16-19 of the tome.

He first explains what synesthesia is and notes he believes it is going to become more widely known in time to come and calls it a renewed, exciting discovery.

His co-author asks him how synesthesia affects his abilities or performance and he responds:

"I'm not talking about my ability to read thoughts and I'm not talking about telepathy, but I'm speaking of a way that I'm now going to reveal was part of my life from day one. It can be identifable to many people, and that indeed there are those, such as Yours Truly, who can hear the sound of color or will see waves of color when they hear music.

"Thousands of times I've been asked in interviews and in conversations, how do I think when I'm performing on stage? On some occasions, I've been more explicit in explaining, but very often I 'hear' peoples thoughts, but at the same time I am heavily influenced by color. I have always found black-and-white movies more visually appealing. I get much more energy out of them. Technicolor movies have sometimes proved too limiting for me. I can 'feel' a person's energy and yes, I am heavily influenced by color...

"It doesn't surprise me that it is more common in artists, actors, and musicians, since I've spent so much of my life demonstration how reality can be altered through the power of suggestion. Often potentials can be brought out of a human being through this force, which by now you know I don't consider to be hypnosis or a trance, but suggestibility. In fact, I find that a person who responds to suggestions or is suggestive is often as well empathethic -- able to feel the feelings of others -- and may tend to be more prone to have one's senses overlap so that they might hear music from a rose or taste a series of words. After all, don't some of us unconsciously describe an idea as delectable? Yes, tasty! Many of us in everyday life embrace something we enjoy because it just 'sounds good.' Even in a setting that could be distasteful or threatening, we have encompassed in our culture the phrase, 'it just doesn't smell right to me.' It's not farfetched to think that those who originated these phrases have this gift of synesthesia and were reflecting the way they blend their senses so that one overlaps the other."

Kreskin notes in the book that though he has hiked The Grand Tetons and Machu Picchu, his greatest voyage is the human mind.

The book is available on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Conversations-Kreskin-The-Amazing/dp/0985988207.

 

Maureen Seaberg is an author and synesthete dedicated to advancing understanding of synesthesia.

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