4 Science Fiction Topics from Doctor Strange that may be Less "Fictional" Than You Thought

November 21, 2016
Communications Team

The recently released movie, Doctor Strange, is billed as science fiction, yet for the last four decades IONS has been at the forefront of scientific research on extraordinary human capacities. It may be surprising to learn that findings indicate that there is less fiction in the effects of some of these phenomenon than many might have assumed.

Spiritual Practices Unveil Extraordinary Capacities

Doctor Strange learns of ancient mystic traditions that, with practice, enable him to achieve extraordinary feats.

Did you know there is evidence that suggests engagement in a spiritual practice can reveal unusual abilities? In his book Supernormal, IONS chief scientist Dr. Dean Radin helps to bridge the gap between science and spirituality by showing how ancient accounts and modern research seem to point to the existence of some truly remarkable aspects of the human condition.

Mind and Matter Interactions

Doctor Strange learns to use his mind to manipulate the experience of reality.

Research results from several experiments conducted at IONS suggest that the mind can indeed influence matter, though on a much smaller scale than presented in the movie. The Double Slit experiment, for example, looked at the influence of conscious attention on an optical system. The Chocolate and Mood experiment was a double blind study that showed improved mood in those who ate chocolate infused with “good intentions.” Also, the Effect of Distant Intention on Water Crystal Formation experiment (a triple blind study in which water samples were subject — or not — to distant intention) found that the ice crystals formed from samples with “intention” were judged to be more aesthetically pleasing than the control samples.

Consciousness and Healing

A debilitating accident leaves Doctor Strange searching for a miraculous recovery. His quest leads him to a mystic called the Ancient One who teaches him how he could heal himself with the power of his mind.

In our research we have found that the mind and body are inextricably linked, each affecting the other. We also have a compilation of studies on healing at a distance, as well as a resource for research on energy healing modalities.


Doctor Strange, who had been a renowned neurosurgeon, suffered an immense blow to his ego and self image when an accident left him unable to continue in that profession. Through his studies and practice with a character known as the Ancient One, he was able to realize a picture bigger than himself, and transformed into someone dedicated to saving the world.

In our research, we have found that the shift in perspective from Me to We is critical for transforming one’s life and potential. Check out our educational program, Worldview Explorations, which brings this notion of awareness, compassion, and service to youth.

If you are inspired by the potential these seemingly extraordinary abilities present, please support our research.

Together we can continue to unfold a deeper scientific understanding of these capacities, and learn how we can all use them to enhance our experience of the world.

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