Impressive stuff. Of course, like all good psychics there is quite a bit of artistic licence. And more importantly while the hits are counted, the misses are quietly forgotten. 2016 is over so we can say with some confidence that her prediction* that ‘Europe will cease to exist’ didn’t come true (a good woo-master would somehow link this prediction
). It’s perhaps not surprising since she also predicted that 2010 would be when World War 3 started and that it would end in 2014, and that Muslims would wage war against Europe
in 2013. So all in all, I don’t think I’m being unfair when I say that we shouldn’t take Baba Vanga very seriously.
Lozanov said of Baba Vanga (source
) “The stories about Vanga Dimitrova are not fantasies…She is extraordinarily talented….Vanga does read the future for those who go to her personally…she has psychic capabilities…” (p. 275). Lozanov also reveals that he has psychic power and was able to ‘block’ Vanga to some extent. (p. 276)
The genetic fallacy
means we shouldn’t write off an idea, just because of where it came from. However, in Lozanov’s case I think we have been a bit too generous. The same research group which produced the amazing results on the effectiveness of suggestopedia also took a psychic seriously and produced ‘scientific research’ showing how effective a psychic she was. It isn’t therefore that Lozanov had some whacky ideas but his research was solid. We have evidence that his research was extremely unreliable.
All of this information was available in the 70’s and yet Suggestopedia was generally treated fairly credulously. It receives serious coverage in works by Krashen, Larsen-Freeman, and many, many others. In Tomlinson’s ‘Materials development in language teaching’ a whole chapter is devoted to writing and grammar presentation in ‘the Lozanov method.’ The author Hansen, tells us that these days (1998) it’s easier to understand here Lozanov was coming from since “quantum science has become more familiar” meaning we can perceive in “multidimensional” ways. Even today you can find published papers (here, here and here for instance) examining the effectiveness of the method and even the ELTJ recently had an article citing Lozanov.
Baba Vanga died in 1996 but almost every year an article appears talking about one or more of her predictions and trying to link it to some current event. Lozanov died in 2012 but his influence lives on in suggestopedia courses, books and in articles. Usually defenders of Suggestopedia say we should take the ‘good stuff’ and leave the rest. I suppose we could do that with Vanga too. I don’t believe in seeing into the future or magic powers but suggestopedia does seems to have something of a charmed life and I don’t predict that changing any time soon.
*difficult to find reputable sources for these claims. Webpages tend to vanish when things don’t come true