The concept of the third eye situated in the middle of the forehead is nothing new. There were images produced in the 17th century that showed the brain having an eye in this position, in the position of what was referred to as being the ‘imaginative soul’. This was where it was believed the images that filled our imaginations were created in a series of thought pictures also referred to as Phantasmata. Images that this hidden eye would project onto some kind of screen in a space at the rear of our heads. What this describes is something referred to in more modern times as thought photographs. Thought photographs do indeed exist, where images of the mind have been projected onto screens of photographic paper without the aid of any physical image capturing equipment. Ted (Theodore) Serios was one such thought photographer.
Ted Serious was an ordinary man. He worked as a bell hop in Chicago but appeared to have a startling and genuine ability to be able to project his visual thoughts into a camera and produce an image. He was stare into the lens of a Polaroid camera, narrowing his focus and intent onto what he wanted to achieve. The images that were produced possessed something of a dream like quality to them. Images that he called ‘thoughographs’. There are notes that accompany each image describing what the thought process was and what the environment was like at the time the image was produced. Serios wasn’t confined to the one kind of camera, he found that he could use different models even under the strictest of test conditions. What was produced on the photograph could differ greatly: some would be black as though no exposure had taken place, others were white and seemingly over exposed, while some would contain ghostly images and shapes. Occasionally the images would appear clear and sharp especially if Serios had been asked to focus on something in particular such as a person or an object.
Under the Influence
Serios was a drinker and it seems that most of his best work was produced while under the influence. It was as though the alcohol broke down the barriers between his real and his psychic perceptions, however his drinking also got him into trouble. Many people concluded that the images that are displayed are fraudulent, after all it seems such a strange ability to possess and it serves no apparent purpose. However he could in fact, when he put his mind to it, produce an image on a camera held by someone else from a distance of around 66ft, occasionally even when the camera was positioned in another room. The question remains though, where did the images that Ted Serios produce come from? Were they images sent from his unconscious mind, from his everyday thoughts or from the world of dreams? This seems to be a power related to material manifestation and occasionally mixed the past with the present and the future. Could we all take a snapshot of our minds, and if so what could we learn from it?