There are various different scenarios that you can paint and different presentations that you can employ when using this effect.
The idea of using it in the context of mind control is very powerful, but imagine the response when using it with a group of people who believe that you are either a medium or spiritualist, or using it in a séance or voodoo routine.
The idea of the taps being generated by a spirit or supernatural power can be too much for some people to take. One method of doing this is to use 2 people, say 6 feet apart. You start by "cleansing the aura", "synchronising with the life energy", etc of the first one, and at this point surreptitiously touching them at various points on their body. You then visually produce the taps on the second person and claim something along the lines of your spirit guide matching your actions on the second person. When questioned the number of touches and location of them match on both people.
You can also use the idea of the shadow representing evil, the freshly cleansed aura being pure and good, and the interaction of the two causing the sensation - obviously you'd be more sensitive to evil and danger if your aura was balanced and cleansed! Another favourite line is "I will cause a ripple in your aura that you will be able to feel."
For the voodoo idea you could either have someone stick pins into a little doll, or draw a cross on a torso drawn on a piece of paper (stick to the top half of the body though - that way the voodoo spell is only half as powerful - and you don't have to try and sneakily tap someone's feet either!!).
You can also claim to be demonstrating telepathy, and I'm sure that you'll be able to think of many more uses for this effect depending on your style and genre.
Finally, the less bold method I mentioned earlier is simply to have a piece of cat gut or other invisible wire poking out of the end of your sleeve prior to performing the effect. Obviously this will only work on bare skin, and the sensation of the touch may be slightly odd for the volunteer, but once you have performed it the emphasis should be on the experience, not what the touches felt like. It also has the additional benefit of being able to dispense with the initial stage where you perform the touches. Personally I don't like to use this method, I feel more in control and I think that the touches feel more substantial using the brazen methods described first.
Real Mind Reading
Let me begin by thanking you for buying this effect, I'm sure that you'll have as much fun and receive as much entertainment from performing it as I have. Its ideal for close up / street magic performances.
This effect relies purely on Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and is effective 90%+ of the time. It involves no preparation, gimmicks, billets, or other props. All that is needed is a volunteer and yourself.
It has perhaps two really effective uses. It can be performed for small groups, at parties and the like, as a demonstration of your mental or psychic powers, or you could use it for an audience to demonstrate how mind control works. This is particularly good as a convincer (or confuser?) before you start any traditional routines disguised as mind control, because you can use it first to involve the audience and then explain how this simple effect was achieved. Hopefully they will then be looking for body language cues, etc, when the performance proper begins, and not the props you are really using (if indeed you do use props).
I don't think that it would be very successful if used as a stand alone effect in a stage routine - it would soon become very dull for the audience because there is no real action for them to see. However, by introducing it as a demonstration of how mind control works, and then explaining how it was done, it will hopefully keep their attention and have a more dramatic effect.
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Today I'm going to teach you a fundamental Mentalism technique known as 'cold reading'. Cold reading is a technique employed by mentalists and charlatans and by charlatan I refer to psychics, mediums, fortune tellers or anyone that claims false abilities that is used to give the illusion that the person has some form of super natural power.