Saturday, May 16, 2009

An Old Discussion I Had With A Skeptic

I like to post an old discussion I had with an skeptic. Here's how it went

Chad, I would say astrology everytime i read up on my sign virgo it's always wrong.

Also you said that are many instances where the paranormal has been shown to have a natural explanation which is true in some instances but there are a lot of cases where that has not happen. Such as well documented cases of apparitions where more than one person has seen.

For Example here

http://ghosts.monstrous.com/crisis_apparitions.htm

and here

http://www.thesurvivalfiles.com/Top-40/top-40_start.shtml

By the way you mentioned also Acupuncture there are many studies that have found evidence for it

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011016070408.htm
http://www.acupuncture.com/research/shldrpain.htm
http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/07/29/1091046071751.html
http://gancao.net/ht/anesthesia.shtml
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0HKP/is_1_28/ai_65014410/pg_1
http://www.scienceblog.com/community/older/2000/B/200001420.html
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn13104-acupuncture-relieves-cancer-chemotherapy-fatigue.html

Also I don't accept all the paranormal I think a lot of it too out there such as Astrology, Big Foot, The lochness Monster, End of the world conspiracy theories etc.]

I do however think there is very overwhelming scientific evidence for psi and survival



Post #63
2 replies
Chad Hester (Valdosta) replied to your post about an hour ago.
Leo, why is it you don't believe in these other pseudosciences? In regards to Bigfoot, there are plenty of eye witness accounts, videos, pictures and lengthy testimonies. Also, people actually live their lives by astrology, just because you haven't found a "genuine" astrologer to predict your future doesn't mean you can discount it. Further, there have been many studies on the efficacy of astrology. You can find them here:

http://www.astrologyweekly.com/astrology-articles/astrology-scientific-studies.php

Astrology is a great example of why meta analysis can be so faulty(Ganzfeld). Post Hoc conclusions, unconscious experimenter data manipulation, and purposefully manipulative data mining are all can come in to play.

My point is that ANYTHING can be made to seem real once it inundates the public deeply enough. Reports of saucer shaped UFO's were not common until the now infamous Kenneth Arnold misquote. This is a major reason why pseudoscience is ridiculed, so as not to add to public confusion.

There are many very intelligent people who get tied up in these ideas and do a great job of making them seem plausible.

All those documented apparition cases are anecdotal. They are ghost stories; it is very difficult to falsify a story. There are just as many documented cases of UFO abductions, Big Foot and the like.

Crisis apparitions.. the people are in a crisis. Under great emotional stress people are very likely to have their perceptions altered(the time slowing down effect is a good example, which I believe has been found to be a manipulation of the memory of the event and not the perception of the actual occurrence of the event) and it's not a stretch for them to believe they see loved ones.

On acupuncture, there are plenty of natural explanations for any effects found. Such as merely the relaxation aspects or endorphine release do to the needle pricks, there is no need to resort to mystical body energy manipulation. Further, in most studies, any effect is reduced to placebo when performed on large test groups.



Post #64
Nicole Elliott (no network) replied to Chad's post about an hour ago.
"Crisis apparitions.. the people are in a crisis. Under great emotional stress people are very likely to have their perceptions altered(the time slowing down effect is a good example, which I believe has been found to be a manipulation of the memory of the event and not the perception of the actual occurrence of the event) and it's not a stretch for them to believe they see loved ones."

Nope sorry Chad but that's wrong, I've worked in Palliative Care for many years and I've had some incredible experiences, I wans't under any emotional stress in fact I enjoyed my work, my perception was never altered and in fact the reason why I got into researching the 'paranormal' is because of the things I had seen and experienced with the patients and their families . Had I never had these experiences I may not be one that not only believes in the existence of the soul continuing but I can honestly say that I know it does, but then I've experienced it and seen it, those that haven't can't understand and find it hard to comprehend I can understand that, but it has nothing to do with patients being on medication and seeing things, not all patients are on medication and when I have experienced appiritions I've been very conscious of what was happening at the time.
The don't beleive they see loved ones, they really do see them and I've seen them after the body has died : )



Post #65
1 reply
You replied to Chad's post 54 minutes ago.
Chad,

The reason why is because I don't find the evidence compelling but I am open to changing my mind about astrology, big foot.

Also you mention about meta analysis referring to the Ganzfeld experiments Yes scientists such as Professor Ray Hyman and Dr. Susan Blackmore have mention the same Post Hoc conclusions, unconscious experimenter data manipulation, and purposefully manipulative data mining which has been refuted many times also the experiments have been replicated many time.

Here's an article you might find worth interest regarding the ganzfeld experiments
http://www.skepticalinvestigations.org/anomalistics/skeptic_research.htm

They are more than just anecdotal there are recorded voices on tape of ghosts, experimental research such also been done such as Dr. Raymond Moody's work on inducing apparitions in a laboratory setting.

Yes Acupuncture more than likely has a natural explanation but it does not stop skeptics from saying it's still pseudoscience.



Post #66
You wrote 50 minutes ago.
Michael Prescott does a good job in my opinion on his analysis of James Randi's believe that acupuncture is pseudoscience



Post #67
Chad Hester (Valdosta) replied to your post 7 minutes ago.
Dr. Raymond Moody never produced an actual apparition.

There are natural explanations for the "ghost tapes".

The majority of the paranormal research I've seen you site has come from the early 1900's. This is because no evidence was found to support the claims. This is how science works. If a theory is producing no conclusive evidence then it is revised or abandoned. We would not of accepted relativity if it could not of produced experimental evidence.

Classic acupuncture IS pseudoscience. The body does not have some mystical energy that is manipulated by needles. This is similar to chiropractics; there has never been any evidence for "innate intelligence" and this is why few chiropractors practice TRUE chiropractics. It is closer to physical therapy now and if acupuncture is to continue it will undergo similar changes.

Leo says

Michael Prescott does a good job of showing why his view on crisis apparitions is wrong.

http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/michael_prescotts_blog/2008/02/whos-in-crisis.html

As far as Acupuncture goes

http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/michael_prescotts_blog/2006/12/quackery.html

1 comment:

WWu777 said...

I've just created a new site debunking all the fallacies of pseudo-skeptics here:

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com

Leo, would you like to be on the SCEPCOP committee?

Thanks,
Winston