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Stevious
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That will be a great subject to discuss but for another separate topic. I presume that most magicians/mentalists are sceptic, same as Penn, Teller, Brown, Banachek, Randi, etc.

This was about why psychological claims might be debunked in the future, and that we can prevent it by being more modest (my opinion), at least by not misleading scientific community.
solarpk
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Quote:
On Sep 18, 2016, Stevious wrote:
That will be a great subject to discuss but for another separate topic. I presume that most magicians/mentalists are sceptic, same as Penn, Teller, Brown, Banachek, Randi, etc.

This was about why psychological claims might be debunked in the future, and that we can prevent it by being more modest (my opinion), at least by not misleading scientific community.


Actually, I do not believe the problem is that the scientific community will ultimately be misled to an extent whereby the "science" is wrong. While 'Project Alpha' clearly showed that scientists are not infallible, the principle of repeatability and peer-review would put the work into context. I believe the biggest issue is "whether presenting examples which we well know are not genuine (because it is entertainment) in a context where a degree of academic rigor could reasonably be expected by an audience is acceptable" where the audience may be not be scientifically inclined, and have failed to acknowledge the blurring of entertainment and scientific discussion because of the context in which the presentation occurs. There you have the issue that such performances distort the reality to an extent whereby a spectator may, by supposed logical extension, conclude other areas considered pseudoscience are more credible than the science suggests.

Of course, you can tell people the truth, but without a strong alternative explanation they will believe what they want anyway.
https://youtu.be/z8wvVAkoJTY?t=433
solarpk
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There is a very related discussion here:
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......forum=15
E.E.
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Why wait till the future? I'm going to start debunking "psychological mentalism" right now, because they're obviously psychics pretending to be psychology experts.
I shall see you on the other side.
B_man2012
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What if I'm a psychic pretending to be a debunker just to get rid of the competition? Hmm
~ The Croatian Mentalist ~

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David Thiel
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On Sep 18, 2016, E.E. wrote:
Why wait till the future? I'm going to start debunking "psychological mentalism" right now, because they're obviously psychics pretending to be psychology experts.


There should be an LOL icon...

David
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Steven Keyl
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There seems to be a sharp incongruity in mindset. In the thread titled, Acknowledging it's all a trick, ( http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......forum=15 ), most of the posters conclude that one should not use a disclaimer or even hint that what they do is not real. Then in this thread, the mindset dramatically shifts so that anyone using a psychological approach should be exposed by the mentalism community at large.

So, from my admittedly distant perspective, the consensus opinion seems to be that if you're using a genuine mind reading approach, then all bets are off and you don't need to come clean about anything. If, however, your presentation is psychologically based, and if you don't use a disclaimer, then the community at large is free to expose you and your methods to the public.

The choice of presentation hardly seems grounds as a litmus test to expose others' work. Either you want people to believe in what you do or you don't, whether it's mind reading or body language. It isn't up to other mentalists to decide for you whether or not you should use a disclaimer.

So I would have a pretty big problem with someone that tries to bully me into using a disclaimer for a body language based presentation, and then in the same breath, go off to perform traditional mind reading without any disclaimer at all.
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jstreiff
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As requested here is the revised link to Radin's talk at Google:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qw_O9Qiwqew

The science is clear in support of psi. Radin has not been debunked although many so-called skeptics seem to believe this. Let us not try to disclaim the facts by casting aspersions on the messenger. The research Radin reports has been published in peer reviewed scientific journals like IEEE Journal, Physics Review,Nature, Science, Journal of Consciousness Studies and Journal of Parapsychology. I was only mentioning it here because the claim that there is no scientific evidence of psi is demonstrably false to anyone who takes the time to study the data themselves honestly and objectively.

As to debunking performance claims whether of psi or psychology, both are distortions of truth, yet ironically both have some basis in fact.
John
solarpk
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Please don't feel I am making an argumentum ad hominem. Since the arguments you present are of your own construction, based on the opinion and work of others, then these arguments can surely be subjected to rebuttal. In this role I would further argue that your position is more than that of a 'messenger' since you have been party to the formulation of a position, not simply relaying a message verbatim.

I absolutely agree that people should inform themselves regarding the actual scientific evidence. To that end, a video presentation which may well blur opinion and fact is evidently not sufficient, so here are Radin's publications for review:
http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=W_sDKJQAAAAJ

From an inspection I realise that: "The research Radin reports has been published in peer reviewed scientific journals like IEEE Journal, Physics Review, Nature, Science, Journal of Consciousness Studies and Journal of Parapsychology." does not mean that Radin's work itself has been published in these journals. There are seemingly no publications by him in any IEEE journal, Physics Review, Science, Journal of Consciousness Studies. Perhaps you simply mean Radin has reported on work that has been published in these journals?

Radin has had a brief non peer-reviewed Letter to the Editor published in Nature which itself is a rebuttal to a negative review of his book: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v39......3b0.html
He is published in the Journal of Parapsychology which at least until 2006 had an Impact Factor (a measure of a journal's relative importance in the field) of 0.23 https://www.researchgate.net/journal/002......ychology From these, some present no experimental results (because it was not the aim of the publication):
Security Measures in an Automated Ganzfeld System (experimental methodology)
Pseudorandom Number Generators in Psi Research (experimental methodology)
Effects of distant healing intention through time and space: Two exploratory studies (short abstract only)
Further investigation of unconscious differential anticipatory responses to future emotions (short abstract only)
A dog that seems to know when his owner is coming home: Effect of environmental variables (short abstract only)
What's Ahead? (opinion piece)
Parapsychology and the Skeptics: A Scientific Argument for the Existence of ESP (book review)

This leaves two publications in the Journal of Parapsychology by Radin with actual results and analysis:
Effects of a priori probability on psi perception: does precognition predict actual or probable futures? (A study by Radin using Radin himself as the sole test subject) http://s3.amazonaws.com/academia.edu.doc......iori.pdf
Testing the plausibility of psi-mediated computer system failures (A study which concludes: "In isolation the present study provides slight support for the hypothesis...")

As a genuine question - of the published work by Radin, are these therefore the two publications which you believe provide the strongest evidence?

Quote:
On Sep 19, 2016, jstreiff wrote:
As requested here is the revised link to Radin's talk at Google:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qw_O9Qiwqew

The science is clear in support of psi. Radin has not been debunked although many so-called skeptics seem to believe this. Let us not try to disclaim the facts by casting aspersions on the messenger. The research Radin reports has been published in peer reviewed scientific journals like IEEE Journal, Physics Review,Nature, Science, Journal of Consciousness Studies and Journal of Parapsychology. I was only mentioning it here because the claim that there is no scientific evidence of psi is demonstrably false to anyone who takes the time to study the data themselves honestly and objectively.

As to debunking performance claims whether of psi or psychology, both are distortions of truth, yet ironically both have some basis in fact.
Stevious
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On Sep 19, 2016, Steven Keyl wrote:
There seems to be a sharp incongruity in mindset. In the thread titled, Acknowledging it's all a trick, ( http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......forum=15 ), most of the posters conclude that one should not use a disclaimer or even hint that what they do is not real. Then in this thread, the mindset dramatically shifts so that anyone using a psychological approach should be exposed by the mentalism community at large.

So, from my admittedly distant perspective, the consensus opinion seems to be that if you're using a genuine mind reading approach, then all bets are off and you don't need to come clean about anything. If, however, your presentation is psychologically based, and if you don't use a disclaimer, then the community at large is free to expose you and your methods to the public.

The choice of presentation hardly seems grounds as a litmus test to expose others' work. Either you want people to believe in what you do or you don't, whether it's mind reading or body language. It isn't up to other mentalists to decide for you whether or not you should use a disclaimer.

So I would have a pretty big problem with someone that tries to bully me into using a disclaimer for a body language based presentation, and then in the same breath, go off to perform traditional mind reading without any disclaimer at all.


It was about the environment in which mentalism is performed, there is a huge difference about psychological presentation in theatre, restaurant or wherever you are booked, and going to academic community e.g. a conference or university lecture and maintaining that it is real pure psychology. So I think few people here would object to any kind of presentation, as long as it is labelled as entertainment, not science.

This topic wasn't intended to decide which presentation is right. I was curious whether or not mentalism could be debunked in the (distant) future due to some performers claiming psychological powers in places where no-one expects to be mislead or fooled by magic trickery.
Stevious
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On Sep 18, 2016, E.E. wrote:
Why wait till the future? I'm going to start debunking "psychological mentalism" right now, because they're obviously psychics pretending to be psychology experts.


We can push this a bit further: James Randi must be psychic, he can also bend spoons, keys like Geller, and even duplicate drawings. Let's expose this fraud, he's done this too many times on tv Smile

Quote:
On Sep 19, 2016, jstreiff wrote:
As requested here is the revised link to Radin's talk at Google:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qw_O9Qiwqew

The science is clear in support of psi. Radin has not been debunked although many so-called skeptics seem to believe this. Let us not try to disclaim the facts by casting aspersions on the messenger. The research Radin reports has been published in peer reviewed scientific journals like IEEE Journal, Physics Review,Nature, Science, Journal of Consciousness Studies and Journal of Parapsychology. I was only mentioning it here because the claim that there is no scientific evidence of psi is demonstrably false to anyone who takes the time to study the data themselves honestly and objectively.

As to debunking performance claims whether of psi or psychology, both are distortions of truth, yet ironically both have some basis in fact.


I don't know much about Radin and his research, nor about other scientists who support psi, but it would be wise to start a new thread for this. Those magicians who would like to express their thoughts on this matter won't expect psi to be discussed in 'Debunking psychological mentalists'.
Steven Keyl
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On Sep 20, 2016, Stevious wrote:

It was about the environment in which mentalism is performed, there is a huge difference about psychological presentation in theatre, restaurant or wherever you are booked, and going to academic community e.g. a conference or university lecture and maintaining that it is real pure psychology. So I think few people here would object to any kind of presentation, as long as it is labelled as entertainment, not science.



There's an entire mountain of gray area in between restaurants and universities. What if you were speaking to a professional group of salesmen about the role of influence and persuasion and during a 60 min. presentation you mix both legitimate and mentalism techniques to demonstrate real phenomena, like psychological reactance or embodied cognition theory? According to your definition, this person should be exposed. One could easily come up with other examples that move the gray area toward one extreme or the other.

Most stage mentalism, in fact, is performed inside the extremes you've painted. Who gets to be the arbiter as to whether it constitutes legitimate demonstration or fraud? This is another slippery slope where self-appointed crusaders decide not only which presentations, but in which settings, mentalism is allowed to be performed.

I would still have a huge problem with someone bullying me into providing disclaimers because of where I'm performing, i.e. "Well, if you're going to talk to salesmen, then OK you can do it, but if you're talking to a group of engineers, then no, you need a disclaimer."
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AttnPls
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Its not about where, its about context. I would hope we can all agree that there is a clear difference between entertainment and education, performing and quackery. If someone can't tell the difference, or doesn't understsnd the ethical responsibility that comes with it, there is something seriously wrong with them. And, yes, it us possible to mix the two if handled appropriately.

I recently saw Alain Nu perform at the DC Spy Museum doing a lecture on Psychic Spies. As a museum lecture, the ethical standards are different than other performing contexts. He did a great job of separating educational content and entertainment by explaining that the routines were his artistic interpretation of the material he was covering.
Steven Keyl
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So in your world, there is no allowance for a presentation that is both educational and entertaining? It has to be one or the other?!? Wow.

“In this treacherous world
Nothing is the truth nor a lie.
Everything depends on the color
Of the crystal through which one sees it”
― Pedro Calderón de la Barca
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Stevious
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When I was younger I used to believe in ESP, Derren Brown and the others tought me that it is mostly fake, showing that he can do the same or even better using trickery. So mentalism can be educational and entertaining.

You will perform mentalism however you like, even as a real psychic or lip reader, if you need more superpowers. You don't have to worry about fellow magicians, except for Penn Jillette. And don't call me self-appointed crusader.

It's hard to tell, but do you find it acceptable to perform mentalism with purely psychological claims in scientific and educational context? Or do you think that mentalists are going to be debunked in, for exapmle 10-20 years, and suffer the same fate as 'psychic' performers?
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An enormous man dressed in an oilcloth slicker had entered the tent and removed his hat. He was bald as a stone and he had no trace of beard and he had no brows to his eyes nor lashes to them. He was close on to seven feet in height and he stood smoking a cigar even in this nomadic house of God and he seemed to have removed his hat only to chase the rain from it for now he put it on again.

The reverend had stopped his sermon altogether. There was no sound in the tent. All watched the man. He adjusted the hat and then pushed his way forward as far as the crate board pulpit where the reverend stood and there he turned to address the reverend’s congregation. His face was serene and strangely childlike. His hands were small. He held them out.

Ladies and gentlemen I feel it my duty to inform you that the man holding this revival is an imposter. He holds no papers of divinity from any institution recognized or improvised. He is altogether devoid of the least qualification to the office he has usurped and has only committed to memory a few passages from the good book for the purpose of lending to his fraudulent sermons some faint flavor of the piety he despises. In truth, the gentleman standing here before you posing as a minister of the Lord is not only totally illiterate but is also wanted by the law in the states of Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Arkansas.

Oh God, cried the reverend. Lies, lies! He began reading feverishly from his opened bible.

On a variety of charges the most recent of which involved a girl of eleven years—I said eleven—who had come to him in trust and whom he was surprised in the act of violating while actually clothed in the livery of his God.

A moan swept through the crowd. A lady sank to her knees.

This is him, cried the reverend, sobbing. This is him. The devil. Here he stands.

Let’s hang the turd, called an ugly thug from the gallery to the rear.

Not three weeks before this he was run out of Fort Smith Arkansas for having congress with a goat. Yes lady, that is what I said. Goat.

Why *** my eyes if I wont shoot the son of a !@#$%, said a man rising at the far side of the tent, and drawing a pistol from his boot he leveled it and fired.

....

The baldheaded man was already at the bar when they entered. On the polished wood before him were two hats and a double handful of coins. He raised his glass but not to them. They stood up to the bar and ordered whiskeys and the kid laid his money down but the barman pushed it back with his thumb and nodded.

These here is on the judge, he said.

They drank. The teamster set his glass down and looked at the kid or he seemed to, you couldn't be sure of his gaze. The kid looked down the bar to where the judge stood. The bar was that tall not every man could even get his elbows up on it but it came just to the judge’s waist and he stood with his hands placed flatwise on the wood, leaning slightly, as if about to give another address. By now men were piling through the doorway, bleeding, covered in mud, cursing. They gathered about the judge. A posse was being drawn to pursue the preacher.

Judge, how did you come to have the goods on that no- account?

Goods? said the judge.

When was you in Fort Smith?

Fort Smith?

Where did you know him to know all that stuff on him?

You mean the Reverend Green?

Yessir. I reckon you was in Fort Smith fore ye come but here.

I was never in Fort Smith in my life. Doubt that he was.

They looked from one to the other.

Well where was it you run up on him?

I never laid eyes on the man before today. Never even heard of him.

He raised his glass and drank.

There was a strange silence in the room. The men looked like mud effigies. Finally someone began to laugh. Then another. Soon they were all laughing together. Someone bought the judge a drink.
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
jstreiff
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Run a Google Scholar report on Dean Radin to obtain a comprehensive view of his activities and scholarship. Study and comprehend the actual reports in psi research and offer a scientific explanation for the reported data. Only then is a rational discussion possible.
John
Dr Spektor
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P.S. in case anyone thought I wrote the above, no - I am not that good - its Cormac's BLOOD MERIDIAN... a book worth reading IMHO
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
Steven Keyl
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Thanks for clearing that up. Great story!
Steven Keyl - The Human Whisperer!

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"If you ever find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause, and reflect." --Mark Twain
Steven Keyl
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Quote:
On Sep 20, 2016, Stevious wrote:
When I was younger I used to believe in ESP, Derren Brown and the others tought me that it is mostly fake, showing that he can do the same or even better using trickery. So mentalism can be educational and entertaining.

You will perform mentalism however you like, even as a real psychic or lip reader, if you need more superpowers. You don't have to worry about fellow magicians, except for Penn Jillette. And don't call me self-appointed crusader.

It's hard to tell, but do you find it acceptable to perform mentalism with purely psychological claims in scientific and educational context? Or do you think that mentalists are going to be debunked in, for exapmle 10-20 years, and suffer the same fate as 'psychic' performers?


I wasn't directing the term "self-appointed crusader" at an individual, but using it to describe anyone that would seek to be the gatekeepers of who should be exposed and who shouldn't. My apologies if you felt it was directed at you.

As far as my beliefs are concerned, I didn't really specify one way or the other. My larger point, though, is a question. Why is it OK to deceive laypeople, but not students or scientists? What is it about those groups that cause some people to radically change their perspective on deception? That appears, to me, to be an inconsistency in how mentalism is viewed. If you believe in disclaimers, then you should use them, regardless of who you are performing for. If you don't believe in them, then don't use them for anyone. What I'm struggling to understand is why do scientists and students get a peek behind the curtain while no one else does?

Let me sum up by asking two questions that may serve as food for thought. These are not rhetorical. I would genuinely love to hear some answers:

  • Why is it OK to give scientists considerations that are not given to laypeople?
  • Even if it's OK to treat scientists differently than everyone else, would you agree, yes or no, that there's still a huge gray area that isn't so easy to define? (For example, what about engineers? software developers? technical managers? At what point does it become OK to deceive again?)
Steven Keyl - The Human Whisperer!

Come visit Magic Book Report.com!

"If you ever find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause, and reflect." --Mark Twain
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