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aligator
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I too agree with Tony's analysis. Couldn't have said it any better, so I won't.
dmkraig
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Quote:
On 2012-03-10 08:45, Davit Sicseek wrote:
...All this criticism of sceptics is a real diversionary tactic used by woo-woo peddlers. It effectively shuts down any form of meaningful debate.

If someone is simply sceptical of the existence of ghosts, points to the lack of evidence for ghosts, how there are many explanations that can explain away the anecdotal evidence for their existence - it is a very weak retort of the pro-ghost movement to simply say - ah he's not a true sceptic, because he isn't practising radical scepticism by questioning the basic assumptions that virtually all humans are agreed upon. We don't see many people questioning the reality of a fast moving bus by stepping in front of it after all.

Hopefully this line of criticism from the anti-sceptic camp can now be seen to be as disingenuous as it is.


I respectfully disagree.

What shuts down debate are the pseudo-skeptics claiming they speak for reason, logic, and science and that anyone who dares to stray from the dogma of their materialist religion must be mocked, decried, insulted, and metaphorically destroyed.

I would note, here, that your attempt to manipulate words has failed. You write about someone who is "*simply* skeptical of the existence of ghosts" [emphasis added] and compare that to someone who is part of some mythical "pro-ghost movement," making your imaginary sceptic a lone warrior against an army of "pro-ghosters." In reality, however, the simple skeptic isn't simply skeptical. Rather, he is intent on not letting others believe as they will and insisting that they follow his materialist religion. Heresy to the pseudo-skeptical dogma must be rooted out and crushed. You've also made a false dichotomy of ghost skeptic vs. pro-ghoster. You don't allow for anything in between much as some Christian fundamentalists believe either you're a Christian like they are or you're on the side of the devil. In fact, the pseudo-skeptic dogma also attacks those of real skeptics who aren't "pro-ghosters" but who want more information before they make up their minds.

It is the pseudo-skeptic who is intent on cutting off debate, not the people who are seeking more information. And I would remind you of the words of Herbert Spencer: "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance—that principle is contempt prior to Investigation."

Finally, what you are calling the "anti-sceptic camp" (it's always good to identify the enemies of a religion as an amorphous group) is actually the group standing up for true skepticism, logic, science, and reason against the pseudo-skeptics (who have hijacked the term "skeptic") who should more accurately be called debunkers with pre-conceived beliefs as strongly held as any member of a fundamentalist religion.

Hamlet Act 1. Scene V:There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
Mind Guerrilla
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Quote:
On 2012-03-10 08:45, Davit Sicseek wrote:
Hopefully this line of criticism from the anti-sceptic camp can now be seen to be as disingenuous as it is.

Sincerity is everything. Once you can fake that, you've got it made.
Quote:
On 2012-03-10 10:42, mastermindreader wrote:
Although referring to an entire group as "peddlers of woo" does indicate certain preconceived notions.

To be fair, he said "peddlers of woo-woo."

Peddling woo is only legal in certain parts of Nevada.
mastermindreader
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I guess I'm off to Nevada, then.
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backinblack
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The coolest statement right here was:

"It's doubly sad that some feel the only way to enlighten the public is to "inform them with the truth."

sure - enlightening people is only made with telling them not the truth.. lol
Quote:
On 2012-03-08 00:57, Tony Iacoviello wrote:
What I can say is that I don't (...) take advantage of anyone in what I do. Those who say otherwise are ignorant of my work.
(...)
I am a palm and tarot reader, and I have nothing to (...) hide.

Tony Iacoviello

cool.. Smile
Mind Guerrilla
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On 2012-03-10 13:34, backinblack wrote:
The coolest statement right here was:

"It's doubly sad that some feel the only way to enlighten the public is to "inform them with the truth."

sure - enlightening people is only made with telling them not the truth.. lol


By Jove, I think he's got it!

Please note that my post was FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY
Davit Sicseek
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Bob, its not a preconception. Post-conception if you must. I should also add that some don't believe they are peddling woo - but in my view they are. Still, better stop using the word 'woo' - 'they' hate that Smile

dmkraig: I'm afraid I don't find any of your respectful disagreement convincing.

I already explained very clearly that those opposed to the skeptics (in the Shermer sense of the word) regularly point to the absense of radical scepticism in anyone who is incredulous to their beliefs. The result of which is to shut down debate. I can't make it much simpler. If I say - "I am very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest" and you reply "Call yourself a skeptic? You are a bit selective! You aren't even skeptical about the existence of the forest! How do you KNOW its there? And if you don't KNOW that - how would you know anything at all about ghosts!". It that line of questioning which is already evident in THIS thread, and evident in no doubt hundreds of others elsewhere on the Café - if that isn't shutting down meaningful debate, I don't know what it.

Quote:
What shuts down debate are the pseudo-skeptics claiming they speak for reason, logic, and science and that anyone who dares to stray from the dogma of their materialist religion must be mocked, decried, insulted, and metaphorically destroyed.


Don't see any debate shutting down here. Plenty of scope for disagreement. If you think there are pixies at the bottom of the garden I will mock you. You are free to continue debating me about it. I think the real bone of contention is that most supernatural claims don't hold up well against reason, logic and science. Of course you will no doubt claim that my very working definition of 'science' is misguided - but then we are back to whether the forest is there or not.

You have imagined that I have created a false dichotomy between pro/anti ghosters. Obviously there are people that are undecided and even those that have never given it a moment's thought. There are of course also degrees in the pro and anti camps. Imagined drama eitherway,

Quote:
It is the pseudo-skeptic who is intent on cutting off debate, not the people who are seeking more information. And I would remind you of the words of Herbert Spencer: "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance—that principle is contempt prior to Investigation."

How much investigation should one do into ghosts before concluding that there is such flimsy evidence for their existence that one should live life as if they don't?

I assume there must be some form of supernatural phenomena that you don't think exists? How would you as a skeptic of that phenomena go about reducing what you consider harmful belief in it? Maybe you can teach the "pseudo-skeptics" a thing or two Smile
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Davit-

Just to play devil's advocate...

You wrote, "I think the real bone of contention is that most supernatural claims don't hold up well against reason, logic and science."

Are you therefore conceding that there are SOME (but not "most") supernatural claims that DO hold up well against reason, logic and science? And if so, which claims are those?

:eek:
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Davit Sicseek
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I'm not conceding that. I suppose I was trying to nuance my language - I don't know the full spectrum of super natural claims after all. I might add however that claims that do hold up well against the above mentioned typically aren't considered supernatural any longer.
Send me the truth: davitsicseek@gmail.com
mastermindreader
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I understand that. I didn't think you really meant to say that "some" supernatural claims have held up. But for the sake of maintaining clarity I would note that there is a difference between the "paranormal" and the "supernatural." The former is not a synonym for the latter. Supernatural claims are, by definition, beyond the the boundaries of scientific explanation or exploration. Paranormal claims are not.

Good thoughts,

Bob
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Davit Sicseek
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Point taken. Going even more off topic, I haven't the foggiest how anyone would know whether a phenomena was paranormal or if it was supernatural.
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Slim King
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Quote:
On 2012-03-10 12:01, dmkraig wrote:
Quote:
On 2012-03-10 08:45, Davit Sicseek wrote:
...All this criticism of sceptics is a real diversionary tactic used by woo-woo peddlers. It effectively shuts down any form of meaningful debate.

If someone is simply sceptical of the existence of ghosts, points to the lack of evidence for ghosts, how there are many explanations that can explain away the anecdotal evidence for their existence - it is a very weak retort of the pro-ghost movement to simply say - ah he's not a true sceptic, because he isn't practising radical scepticism by questioning the basic assumptions that virtually all humans are agreed upon. We don't see many people questioning the reality of a fast moving bus by stepping in front of it after all.

Hopefully this line of criticism from the anti-sceptic camp can now be seen to be as disingenuous as it is.


I respectfully disagree.

What shuts down debate are the pseudo-skeptics claiming they speak for reason, logic, and science and that anyone who dares to stray from the dogma of their materialist religion must be mocked, decried, insulted, and metaphorically destroyed.

I would note, here, that your attempt to manipulate words has failed. You write about someone who is "*simply* skeptical of the existence of ghosts" [emphasis added] and compare that to someone who is part of some mythical "pro-ghost movement," making your imaginary sceptic a lone warrior against an army of "pro-ghosters." In reality, however, the simple skeptic isn't simply skeptical. Rather, he is intent on not letting others believe as they will and insisting that they follow his materialist religion. Heresy to the pseudo-skeptical dogma must be rooted out and crushed. You've also made a false dichotomy of ghost skeptic vs. pro-ghoster. You don't allow for anything in between much as some Christian fundamentalists believe either you're a Christian like they are or you're on the side of the devil. In fact, the pseudo-skeptic dogma also attacks those of real skeptics who aren't "pro-ghosters" but who want more information before they make up their minds.

It is the pseudo-skeptic who is intent on cutting off debate, not the people who are seeking more information. And I would remind you of the words of Herbert Spencer: "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance—that principle is contempt prior to Investigation."

Finally, what you are calling the "anti-sceptic camp" (it's always good to identify the enemies of a religion as an amorphous group) is actually the group standing up for true skepticism, logic, science, and reason against the pseudo-skeptics (who have hijacked the term "skeptic") who should more accurately be called debunkers with pre-conceived beliefs as strongly held as any member of a fundamentalist religion.

Hamlet Act 1. Scene V:There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
Very TRUE!!!!!
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS
mastermindreader
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On 2012-03-10 15:39, Davit Sicseek wrote:
Point taken. Going even more off topic, I haven't the foggiest how anyone would know whether a phenomena was paranormal or if it was supernatural.


It can be difficult, I admit. But if the claim is made that a deity planned and executed all of creation, that deity would, of necessity, exist outside of the parameters of his creation. Thus, the claim would be beyond scientific exploration.

If, on the other hand, I state that I can fundamentally alter the molecular structure of objects simply by concentrating on them, that claim can be tested. Until that claim is either verified or debunked, the phenomena that I exhibit can be considered paranormal because it apparently is in conflict with the laws of physics. (Just as a UFO is really just that until you identify what it actually is.)

So the difference, then, between the paranormal and the supernatural is that the former can be subjected to scientific examination while the latter cannot.

Good thoughts,

Bob
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Davit Sicseek
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Agreed. But presumably a good deal of paranormal or supernatural phenomena COULD be either. Your case of the deity is certainly clear-cut, but many other phenomena could potentially be either and their classification would presumably depend on the manner in which a claim for their existence was put forward. For example if one was to advance the claim that they met a ghost and this ghost told them that they existed outside of the laws of nature, then that would indicate a ghost of the supernatural variety. Contrastingly, they may say that the ghost told them that they are natural - but the world's current understanding of physics is unable to account for them - this would imply a paranormal ghost.

Am I misunderstanding anything here?

And if not, I wonder what the usefulness of the distinction is in practice?
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dmkraig
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Quote:
On 2012-03-10 13:41, Davit Sicseek wrote:

dmkraig: I'm afraid I don't find any of your respectful disagreement convincing.


That's up to you.
Quote:
I already explained very clearly that those opposed to the skeptics (in the Shermer sense of the word) regularly point to the absense of radical scepticism in anyone who is incredulous to their beliefs. The result of which is to shut down debate. I can't make it much simpler. If I say - "I am very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest" and you reply "Call yourself a skeptic? You are a bit selective! You aren't even skeptical about the existence of the forest! How do you KNOW its there? And if you don't KNOW that - how would you know anything at all about ghosts!". It that line of questioning which is already evident in THIS thread, and evident in no doubt hundreds of others elsewhere on the Café - if that isn't shutting down meaningful debate, I don't know what it.


Ah! Once again we're confronted with the good ol' straw man argument. Here you think you know what someone who disagrees with a debunker would say, and then you denounce it. So let me ask you, "How many people have you said that you are "very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest" and received that supposed answer? One? Five? None? Sorry, but at best that's called anecdotal evidence and is not scientifically acceptable.

Second, I have never heard debunkers say, "I am very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest." Instead, they say--and I've heard this from dozens of debunkers over they years--"You're a naive idiot for thinking there are ghosts in the forest. Anyone with an iota of logic knows they aren't there." Nicer ones would simply say, "You're wrong." The former denies discussion by not being willing to accept any data and adding bullying and insults while the later just refuses to look at any data.

However, supposed a debunker did come up to a real skeptic and said, "I am very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest." A real skeptic wouldn't say even one of the things you put in his or her mouth. Instead, such a person would ask for scientific research to be done to prove it one way or the other.

I have to reject your claim. It is the pseudo-skepic who shuts down discussion and debate, not those who face the pseudo-skeptics closed mind and bullying tactics.

Quote:
"What shuts down debate are the pseudo-skeptics claiming they speak for reason, logic, and science and that anyone who dares to stray from the dogma of their materialist religion must be mocked, decried, insulted, and metaphorically destroyed."

Don't see any debate shutting down here. Plenty of scope for disagreement. If you think there are pixies at the bottom of the garden I will mock you. You are free to continue debating me about it. I think the real bone of contention is that most supernatural claims don't hold up well against reason, logic and science. Of course you will no doubt claim that my very working definition of 'science' is misguided - but then we are back to whether the forest is there or not.


<sigh> This is EXACTLY what I said. First you make up a straw man. Without evidence one way or another a real skeptic would not say there are pixies at the bottom of the garden. But let's say he or she does have evidence to support this claim. Do you ask to see the evidence? No. Are you willing to discuss it? No. Are you willing to debate it? No. What will you do? You mock the person. This is clearly an attempt to belittle someone so they can't discuss or debate with you or anyone else. You're following Cicero's edict that "When you have no case, abuse the plaintiff." You claim to be representing "reason, logic and science," exactly as the fundamentalist religionists say they are representing reason, logic and science and will not discuss anything that gets in the way of their predetermined belief system.

Thank you for your statement. You have not only proved that what I posted was exactly correct, you have given a perfect example of how pseudo-skeptics actually have predetermined beliefs and will do ANYTHING to prevent someone from daring to disturb their order. Your argument sounds exactly like the ones given by the Church during the Inquisition. I'm sure the Church told Galileo that his stupid claims about the Earth going around the Sun "don't hold up well against reason, logic and science."

Quote:
You have imagined that I have created a false dichotomy between pro/anti ghosters. Obviously there are people that are undecided and even those that have never given it a moment's thought. There are of course also degrees in the pro and anti camps. Imagined drama eitherway,


I'm sorry. Please go back and re-read what I posted. I did NOT say you created a "false dichotomy between pro/anti ghosters." I wrote nothing of the sort. I DID write that you have created a mythical "pro-ghost movement" in order to give your "anti-ghosters" something to fight. This is a typical trick of fundamentalists: Divide the people. Set up camps of US (the good guys) and THEM (the bad guys). In this way you provide a common evil enemy that the people wearing white can fight.

Quote:
"It is the pseudo-skeptic who is intent on cutting off debate, not the people who are seeking more information. And I would remind you of the words of Herbert Spencer: "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance—that principle is contempt prior to Investigation."
How much investigation should one do into ghosts before concluding that there is such flimsy evidence for their existence that one should live life as if they don't?


I see. So you think that real science should be limited by time and money. I imagine some people were also asking how much money and how long should we spend to try and find a vaccine for Polio. After all, there was only flimsy evidence that such a vaccine could ever be created.

Quote:
I assume there must be some form of supernatural phenomena that you don't think exists?


Sure. For one thing, you're attempting to read my mind. That ability within you clearly does not exist!

Quote:
How would you as a skeptic of that phenomena go about reducing what you consider harmful belief in it? Maybe you can teach the "pseudo-skeptics" a thing or two Smile


I am not a "skeptic of...phenomena." REAL skeptics aren't skeptical of any particular phenomena. They are simply skeptical. It is an approach to reality, not an attack on any particular phenomenon or set of phenomena.

When a phenomenon is presented, a real skeptic would say, "Let's see if we can prove if the phenomenon is real or not." A pseudo-skeptic begins by saying "I'm skeptical of that phenomenon and will do whatever I can to prove that it doesn't exist."

This goes back to the real issue: Why does the pseudo-skeptic care? Frequently, they'll give the answer that they're just trying to protect people from being hurt. My response is that more people are hurt by lying politicians in one month than have been hurt by people believing in unusual phenomena in 100 years. Where are your freakin' priorities? If you want to really help people, volunteer at a food bank. Go door-to-door collecting money for Doctors Without Borders or some other charity. The "we're only trying to help people" argument just doesn't fly.

So why are the pseudo-skeptics so intent on supporting their position while mocking and bullying anyone who attempts to even suggest that there might be something to discuss? It's because their pseudo-skepticism, their archaic form of materialism (I call it "Scientism") is actually their ersatz religion. The pseudo-skeptic will use the same techniques on heretics toward their religion of Scientism that some fundamentalist churches use on anyone who dares to question the church's dogma.

You say you will mock someone who disagrees with you. I say that you might remember that a mind is like a parachute. It works best when it's open. The mind of the fundamentalist religionist and the follower of fundamentalist Scientism keeps their parachute closed.
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Quote:
On 2012-03-10 18:49, Davit Sicseek wrote:

Am I misunderstanding anything here?

And if not, I wonder what the usefulness of the distinction is in practice?

In practice it is very useful AND pragmatic because it allows for scientific exploration of paranormal events to proceed separate and apart from debates about metaphysics. Researchers and skeptics alike need only point out, correctly, that such matters are outside the realm of science.

Good thoughts,

Bob
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Slim King
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I think Dmkraig has successfully disected any Pseudo-Skeptic dogmatism. He is 100% correct. And you only need to pull out the dictionary to define Paranormal... Not Scientifically Explainable....
Paranormal events occure all the time!
Pseudo-Skeptics are basically frauds pretending to be true skeptics for fun and mostly profit.
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Davit Sicseek
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Dmkraig: I give up. I've re-read my posts and I'm quite confident that it is clear to anyone reading what I am getting at. It is also clear that you missing my point (or refusing to accept it.) I'm going to keep this short...

My creation to pro and anti groups is not a sinister piece of propaganda - just a simulated conversation. I don't accept that I characterised the likely conversations - anti-sceptics have already tried to reduce regular scepticism of the supernatural to radical scepticism of near-universally shared assumptions in this very thread. Clearly such words DO come out of their mouths. Likewise, you've still not shown how sceptics shut down debate. Certainly if someone claims to see a Ghost and has no EVIDENCE then a sceptic is likely to have little interest in debating with them. After all, the human senses are fallible. (Cue the anti-sceptic advancing another radical scepticism argument).

Quote:
However, supposed a debunker did come up to a real skeptic and said, "I am very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest." A real skeptic wouldn't say even one of the things you put in his or her mouth. Instead, such a person would ask for scientific research to be done to prove it one way or the other.


Only you are seeking to prove a negative. You can't "prove" that there are no ghosts walking around in the forest. I know this sounds harsh, but its hard to have this discussion with you until you have learned a bit more about logic and the different notions of scepticism. Plenty of good philosophy books dealing with both.

Bob:
Quote:
In practice it is very useful AND pragmatic because it allows for scientific exploration of paranormal events to proceed separate and apart from debates about metaphysics. Researchers and skeptics alike need only point out, correctly, that such matters are outside the realm of science.

Yes, I'm clear on the principle differentiation - but not the practice. How would a researcher of sceptic have any idea whether phenomena X was paranormal or supernatural? I see a bright light in the sky - is that god directly creating a super-natural phenomena? Or is it something paranormal that science, logic and reason simply hasn't been able to explain? Seems the majority of claims could be presented either way.
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This is maybe more a Spooky question / reflective thought...

But if one could do the following - or at least show it can be done through theatrical arts and illusions:

Turn water into wine, walk on water, bring a dead thing to life - would Christianity and its spin offs be clearly all a fraud?

Turn a stick into a snake, turn water into blood, make water flow from a stone - would Judiasm all be a fraud?

etc etc

Spiritualism / Paganism / whatever you want to call it can be done "legit" in terms people truly believe it.... as much as people will exploit it.

Note: I am not talking about scienctific proof... just about treating readers and the like in the same light as other spiritual/religions

One of my fav films is NIGHTMARE ALLEY - for many reasons - but one cool theme that runs throughout is although the carnies seem to use things like mentalism and card readings to exploit the non-carnies... they still believe in it themselves... watch out for the hanged man card!!!!

Just like bad doctors, bad magicians, bad any profession - people remember that more than the ones who are good.

IMHOOOOOOO
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"

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On 2012-03-11 10:35, Dr Spektor wrote:
But if one could do the following - or at least show it can be done through theatrical arts and illusions:

Turn water into wine, walk on water, bring a dead thing to life - would Christianity and its spin offs be clearly all a fraud?


Or, to bring it back to the specific topic: Just because Paul Zenon learned tarot and palm reading from a magician doesn't mean that these arts can't be learned through more respected halls of learning where people can be taught to refine and enhance their gifts without introducing any trickery.

I'm a self-educated psychic surgeon so I can't recommend any particular school. I'll leave it to others on this board to discuss their experiences at such institutions.

Quote:
On 2012-03-11 06:29, Davit Sicseek wrote:
Dmkraig: I give up.


By Jove, I think he's got it!
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Just like Miss Cleo bilked millions from the uninformed seekers the Pseudo-Skeptics are on a grand fund raiser from the unimformed skeptics. Tens of millions for straw man demonstrations and nothing more......at least they didn't get MY money... Smile
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS
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Quote:
On 2012-03-11 06:29, Davit Sicseek wrote:

Bob:
Quote:
In practice it is very useful AND pragmatic because it allows for scientific exploration of paranormal events to proceed separate and apart from debates about metaphysics. Researchers and skeptics alike need only point out, correctly, that such matters are outside the realm of science.

Yes, I'm clear on the principle differentiation - but not the practice. How would a researcher of sceptic have any idea whether phenomena X was paranormal or supernatural? I see a bright light in the sky - is that god directly creating a super-natural phenomena? Or is it something paranormal that science, logic and reason simply hasn't been able to explain? Seems the majority of claims could be presented either way.


I think that the other primary distinction is that investigation of paranormal claims is limited to finding or eliminating physical explanations, rather than discovering ultimate causes or metaphysical meanings, for phenomena that can be directly observed and/or experienced. The former are things we seek to understand through science, the latter are, by definition, beyond current scientific understanding.

My point, though, is that it is incorrect to use the words "supernatural" and "paranormal" interchangeably as they have been by many in this thread.

As to the skeptic/pseudo-skeptic dichotomy- I would define a pseudo-skeptic as one who ignores his or her own preconceptions and fails to consider the possible effects of his own confirmation biases when evaluating paranormal claims.

You know, the ones who use the following logic:

All psychics are fake, therefore this one is fake.

When presented with an inexplicable phenomena, the pseudo-skeptic would dismiss it as a "mere" anomaly or, if it appears to be repeatable will simply modify their logic to:

I cannot explain what this psychic does but, since all psychics are fake, this one is fake so the phenomena is therefore the result of faulty statistics, experimental error or outright fraud. It must be one of these things because, again, all psychics are fake.

Once again I would cite the example of the sTarbaby fiasco to show how this kind of thinking has discredited the work of certain pseudo skeptics:

http://cura.free.fr/xv/14starbb.html

Good thoughts,

Bob
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Pseudo-Skeptics take pride in not spending donations on scientific research. In fact it is their rule. They have deep pockets to fill instead.
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David Numen
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As an addition to this debate what's the thinking on hypnosis? As I recall some scientists say hypnosis doesn't exist - it's all social compliance. Does this make all hypnotists and hypnotherapists fake? Is hypnotherapy, therefore, only successful because of the placebo?

I bring this up because many mentalists utilise hypnosis in their shows and some even practice hypnotherapy. I don't see THEM being called on their beliefs.

Now, apparently the issue is not really whether it exists or not but what it ACTUALLY is...well isn't that the case with psychics too? Whether it's generalisations, lucky hits, subconscious observation or whatever, surely, as in hypnosis, all that really matters is the end result? Which, as many readers can testify, is usually helpful. That there are scammers and cheats is regrettable but certainly not isolated to the psychic field.
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Jesse Lewis
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Hypnotists get called on their beleifs all of the time maybe not as much as readers and psychics but we do get called on it, the truth of the matter is it is all perception one way or another with hypnosis. I know very few hypnotists that are out there commiting fraud and less readers a reader is much like a religion as in there is no proof but we belive it anyway same with hypnosis. same with magic same with a lot of different things
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David Numen
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Mr Lewis, first off it's NumEn with an E.

There have been looooooads of nasty hypnotists about - in fact I've read far more stories about sleazy hypnotists than I have fraudulent psychics so I would say it's a pretty pertinent point.

I don't know many psychic readers personally that bring religion into it - spirituality yeah, but religion? And people aren't as dumb as teh skeptics seem to think. They are aware of "cold reading" and most people I see are healthily skeptical and I wouldn't have it any other way. The clients who ar eover-effusive and rave about your every utterance are generally less interesting and satisfying as clients.

I am also fairly honest with clients - I don't know quite what "this" is but it works and I'll show you. I give it the label psychic because most people can relate to it but it seems the argument is more what "psychic" means and achieves rather than whether it exists.
New book "Phone Home: Confessions of a Telephone Reader" available from Lybrary.com. Neal Scryer, Richard Webster, Millard Longman and Jerome Finley love it - maybe you will too!
dmkraig
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Quote:
On 2012-03-11 06:29, Davit Sicseek wrote:
Dmkraig: I give up. I've re-read my posts and I'm quite confident that it is clear to anyone reading what I am getting at. It is also clear that you missing my point (or refusing to accept it.) I'm going to keep this short...


Wow! Have your egotism is just incredible! But that's your problem, not anyone else's.

By the way, the "anyone reading what I am getting at ploy" is an old advertising technique. You set up a supposed group and encourage people to become part of that group. Too bad you have to try and sell something instead of just communicate.

Oh, and one other thing. You can try all you want, but the meaning of your communication is the response you get. I'm just silly enough to stand up to bullies who think that by using glittering generalities and dodging issues while appealing to undefined logic they can force people to believe as they do.

I wish I could say something to help you understand, but that's my poor communication skills. I'll try, though, with your ghost in the forest analogy.

You want to say you'd be skeptical of the claims of a ghost in the forest. What debunkers mean when they say that, however, is they don't believe it, nothing will make them believe it, nobody else should believe it, and we'll "mock" anyone who dare to present any other view.

What do I say? I'm a skeptic. I want to investigate to find out if it's true or not.

Quote:
My creation to pro and anti groups is not a sinister piece of propaganda - just a simulated conversation.

No. Those were the ONLY choices you gave. They were also false; a straw man. It's easy to defeat a straw man. It's much harder to deal with reality and true skepticism.
[quote]I don't accept that I characterised the likely conversations - anti-sceptics have already tried to reduce regular scepticism of the supernatural to radical scepticism of near-universally shared assumptions in this very thread. [quote]It's really easy to make generalizations and attack people without backing up one's claims.
What you're calling "regular scepticism of the supernatural" is, of itself, a false statement. What is "regular" skepticism. Is that what pseudo-skeptics have when the get fiber in their diets?

In fact, your so-called "regular scepticism" is simple denialism. It's not skeptical at all.

Your attempt at a "likely conversation" is not based on fact, it's based on the dogma that followers of the pseudo-skeptical religion have been spreading for years.

But then, as a real skeptic, I could be wrong. Show a conversation that comes close to matching your "likely conversation" and I'll admit I was wrong. I just put in two conditions: One: it has to be on the specific subjects of this thread. I've seen too many pseudo-skeptic do the change of topics and change the position of the goalposts defense of their dogma too many times. Two: you have to show that this is a typical conversation and not one that is out of the norm.

Quote:
Clearly such words DO come out of their mouths.

That's your interpretation. You have not shown it. Simply stating it because it's part of your dogma does not make it so.

Quote:
Likewise, you've still not shown how sceptics shut down debate.

Actually, I have, but your dogmatic beliefs prevent you from seeing it. You stated that if you disagreed with someone you would "mock" them. Do you really think that throwing insults and mocking people rather than a reasoned discussion with premises back by facts leading to a logical conclusion isn't going to stifle debate? You did it yourself! I can't believe that an intelligent person such as yourself is so unaware of your own actions.


Quote:
Certainly if someone claims to see a Ghost and has no EVIDENCE then a sceptic is likely to have little interest in debating with them. After all, the human senses are fallible. (Cue the anti-sceptic advancing another radical scepticism argument).


And yet...here you are. Smile

Seriously, though, if you have little interest in debating, why are you spending so much energy doing exactly that? C'mon, man! Look at what is going on.


[quote]"However, suppose a debunker did come up to a real skeptic and said, "I am very skeptical that there are ghosts walking around in the forest." A real skeptic wouldn't say even one of the things you put in his or her mouth. Instead, such a person would ask for scientific research to be done to prove it one way or the other."

Only you are seeking to prove a negative. You can't "prove" that there are no ghosts walking around in the forest. I know this sounds harsh, but its hard to have this discussion with you until you have learned a bit more about logic and the different notions of scepticism. Plenty of good philosophy books dealing with both.[quote]
Of course you can prove a negative. I can prove you're not in my room by just looking around. It's more accurate to say you can't prove some negatives. But this is a standard "out" used by dogmatic debunkers. Did you miss what I wrote, saying proving it "one way of the other?" That means you can prove that it does exist. That's why if a person can't prove the existence of a ghost in the forest the only scientific and logical conclusion is that such a beastie is unproven.

Plenty of good philosophy books dealing with both? Name five, please. Since there are "plenty" of such books that should be easy.

(BTW, my college degree is in philosophy. I received it from UCLA. Where did you get your degree in philosophy?)
Slim King
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Slam Dunk for Dmkraig! I also studied Philosophy and history of Religion in school. I like the stuff concerning cults. Pseudo-Skeptics seem to act just like the cults they claim to debunk! Miss Cleo was made to return over half of her ill gotten gain(her company, not her personally.. she just paid back $250,000) Should Pseudo-Skeptics return their ill gotten gains?
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS
Mind Guerrilla
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Quote:
On 2012-03-11 15:41, Slim King wrote:
Slam Dunk for Dmkraig!

In your face, Davit Sicseek! Don't let the door hit you on the way out! You didn't know you were dealing with PHILOSOPHY MAJORS, did you, sucker?

So, did you guys study tarot/palm reading at the same school where you studied Philosophy? If not, where? Which schools would you say have the best programs?

Speaking of education, let's hope Paul Zenon is reading this thread and is learning a thing or two! Not everyone learned tarot/palm reading from magicians, Mr. Z!

Can I get a high five?
Davit Sicseek
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I didn't major in philosophy. My training comes from an inquisitive mind - oh and the Royal Institute of Philosophy.

Too funny. You've basically just repeated yourself. I stand by what I said. I find it amazing that your a philosophy major and yet phrased your arguments in the manner that you did. Sloppy to say the least - or was it deliberate abuse of logic? You know full well that I can't conclusively prove the absence of ghosts. Heads you win, tails you win eh? Very Schopenhaueresque of you. And now you have the nerve to rephrase it in terms of proven/unproven!? Very poor form.

I repeat my previous statement - How much investigation should one do into ghosts before concluding that there is such flimsy evidence for their existence that one should live life as if they don't? I for one don't have the time for endless investigations every-time some woo-woo man claims he felt a ghostly presence. If there is EVIDENCE - lets see it, lets debate. If its just a "feeling" - lets not bother.
Send me the truth: davitsicseek@gmail.com
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