As an unsurpassed magician, psychic, and prophet, Wolf Messing is truly an unsolved mystery of the 20th century. 

He is the man whose prophecies brought fear into the heart of Hitler, and whose supernatural abilities were admired by Freud and Einstein, the greatest minds of his generation.

Born in the Russian Empire (modern-day Poland) in 1899 into a respectable middle-class Jewish family, from an early age, Wolf exhibited extraordinary talents. Among them were an uncanny ability to predict future events, read the thoughts of others, and find concealed or lost items.

As a young child, he had an astounding memory – he had learned the entirety of the Talmud, the primary Jewish religious text after the Bible, by heart when he was only six years old.

However, the young boy eventually defied his parent’s wishes to become a rabbi because he felt that he had a different calling in life. As a teenager, Messing decided to travel West to Berlin, the cultural capital of Prussia and the German Empire, to seek his fortune.

He boarded the first train he could find and slept under the chair to avoid the ticket inspector, as he could not afford his passage. But the inspector eventually discovered him and demanded a ticket. Wolf then picked up a shred of newspaper from the ground and handed it to the man.

The inspector punched the paper and said: “You’re a strange one, aren’t you? Why are you hiding under there when you have a ticket?” This was the moment when Wolf realized his power to manipulate others and change their behavior through the power of suggestion.

Wolf Messing possessed supernatural abilities from a young age

Experiments of Einstein and Freud 

In Berlin, he worked on developing his psychic abilities. Before the outbreak of the Second World War, Wolf associated with a circus and toured extensively across Europe. His performances mesmerized millions of audiences throughout the continent and he became a celebrity. 

In his performances, Messing could find hidden things, read minds, predict the future, and use the power of suggestion, all of which was done without any sleight of hand or the support of unseen assistants. What the audience witnessed weren’t just ordinary magic tricks, but rather his astonishing abilities at work.

The Messing phenomenon even elicited extreme curiosity from renowned scientists Sigmund Freud and Albert Einstein. Both men decided to meet up with Messing to verify the claims that were made about his abilities.

Without saying a word, Freud transmitted a thought to Messing. The psychic then left the room, got a pair of tweezers, and returned to pluck exactly three hairs from Einstein’s mustache–which turned out to be exactly what Freud had been thinking of. The two scientists, of course, were left astonished and deeply intrigued by this man of mystery.

Fleeing to the Soviet Union

When Adolf Hitler came to power in 1933 and shortly thereafter began the wide-scale persecution of Jews and foreigners in Germany, Messing had no choice other than returning to his homeland in Poland.

As a European-wide war loomed on the horizon, he made ​​his famous prophecy: “If Hitler declares war in the East, only death awaits him.” Upon hearing these words, Hitler became infuriated and announced a 200,000 Reichsmarks bounty on Messing’s head. 

After the Nazi invasion of Poland in 1939, he was hunted down by the Gestapo. He was forced to flee toward the Soviet border. 

Hunted by the Nazis, Messing had to flee to the Soviet Union. (evi.com/ Wikimedia Commons/ Public Domain)

Overcoming Stalin’s challenges

In the Soviet Union, he continued with his career as an entertainer and his reputation as a clairvoyant and telepath grew more and more. 

Deeply impressed by the legendary tales of Messing’s abilities, Josef Stalin decided to test to demonstrate his supposed skill at influencing the thoughts of others.

For the test, Messing was challenged to carry out the world’s first “psychic bank robbery.” As per the dictator’s order, Wolf walked alone and unarmed into the Moscow Gosbank.

At the state bank, he walked up to the cashier and handed a blank sheet of paper to him. But then, Wolf sent a thought to the cashier, making the bank employee believe that he had just received a check for 100,000 rubles. 

Without asking any questions or showing any hesitation, the cashier went straight away to the bank’s safe, came back and gave Messing the designated amount. Soviet agents were totally astounded by this scene, especially because they had plainclothes spies watching him the entire time. 


Messing had the power to alter other people’s thoughts. (Wolf Grigorievich Messing/ Facebook)

Stalin then arranged another test for the great psychic. He asked Messing to come to visit him at his dacha (country house) in Kuntsevo, which was one of the most fortified places in Russia in those days. The next day, without any prior permit, Messing easily passed through all the security checks and walked straight into Stalin’s room. 

When Stalin looked up, he saw a man standing before him, who was none other than Wolf Messing. The Soviet leader was in awe of the Polish wizard and demanded to know how he had accomplished this feat. 

Messing calmly explained how he had used his powers of suggestion to convince Stalin’s guards that the psychic was in fact Lavrentiy Beria, the much-feared head of Soviet security and secret police. 

Until his death in 1974, the incredible genius of Wolf Messing and his uncanny capacity to influence reality created a halo of mystery and intrigue around him. There are many Russians today who still believe that he was a true mystic, blessed with some sort of supernatural power. 

While no one knows for sure why or how Messing inherited these strange gifts, he left a distinct impression on all who crossed his path, however great or small they were.