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“We might like psi-related phenomena (and the people who produce them) to be straightforward and uncomplicated, but the universe seems to have other ideas.”

Most of the world including the parapsychology researchers have a scientific paradigm, which is unable to *discover or even begin to understand these psi related phenomena. What is this new paradigm or mental model that will discover and reveal to the world on a mass scale these psi related phenomena? Sorry but we within the existing paradigm cannot even fathom an answer to that question.

This new paradigm is **unknown at this time but you can expect that it will come from someone outside science or psychology. And when that person or persons introduces this new paradigm they will be laughed at, scolded, and rejected for years maybe even decades and then with time and perseverance accepted. That is the profound wonderment of the evolution of the soul and of the human mind.

I watched scientists last night on a TV special trying to create life inside a test tube. Arrogance, ignorance (ok unawareness), and years of conditioning inside the existing scientific and materialistic paradigm all in one show. I.e. paradigm paralysis, which is most prevalent in of all people: experts.

*>Convincing data that overwhelms the materialistic paradigm.
** >To our knowledge unknown.

I expected that the show "Medium" was exaggerated because otherwise it would be boring. Real life is always somewhat more mundane than real life. But, like William James said, "it only takes one white crow to prove that not all crows are black." Not every "hit" has to be out of the ball park. If only one or just a few of them are then that shows that something mystical is happening. I've read a blue million NDE's. Do I believe they are all real? Absolutely not, but they don't all have to be. If only some of them are "real", that's enough to show me that my life is more meaningful than what the materialist would have me believe. I used to love watching John Edward's show "Crossing Over." He was funny, charismatic, entertaining, likable, and even a little bit psychic. Not all of his readings were mind blowing, but every once in a while he'd make a hit that made you wonder, "where did that come from?" Once telling some girls that their grandmother was showing him a Victrola and those girls saying that an old Victrola was her prized possession, and another time telling some guy that he was hearing Portuguese and hearing the name Fernando, and then later on that same man learned that is estranged father had spent time in Brazil, learned Portuguese, and had lived on an Island called Fernando. Not all crows are black. Most are, but every once in a while in life there is a white crow, enough to show us that there is more to this life than meets the eye.

This is second hand, but I feel comfortable sharing it.

A friend of mine is a television producer. (He works on a current, very successful show, but I will not reveal his name without permission.) He was involved in a pilot for a “Crossing Over” style show for Allison Dubois. His job was to find a subject for a reading, which he did completely independently of Dubois and anyone else connected with the pilot. He was completely satisfied that the person he found was unknown to her and that the identity had not been leaked. Let me further add that my friend is a deeply cynical person and offered this story to me very reluctantly.

Well, he said that Dubois immediately launched into the reading with hit after hit and, my friend’s words, “had everyone in tears” on the set. He was very clearly bewildered by it all.

Sure, it’s anecdotal evidence. But I know my friend and I accept his story. Of course, id doesn’t mean she never cheats or exaggerates, but that’s another issue….

Could it be that William and Art's comments are going a bit off topic??? :-)

I would hope that people would not see my blog post or the articles it links to as a referendum on parapsychology, but as a valid investigation into the claims of a very public and vocal medium.

So, out of laziness and an effor tto save some time, I am going to submit a comment here identical to a comment I just made on the TestingMediums yahoo group site.

Like I said in the opening of my blog post, I didn’t think many people would be happy with my questioning of Allison Dubois’ credibility as a medium assisting in criminal investigations. Allison Dubois has a very public and likable reputation, and I am a little and unknown provocateur with a blog. I’m very clear on that.

The only part of the Phoenix New Times story that I see needing further clarification from Allison Dubois is her very public claims (made in books and interviews) where she takes blatant credit for playing a pivotal role in the resolution to some important investigations at the time. I do not question Alison’s (or Laurie’s) ability as a mental medium, or that they may have had some valid reasons behind their personal dispute with Dr. Schwartz.

However, in thinking about Dr. Schwartz’s comparison of Allison as the “Michael Jordan of mediums,” I am drawn to another story about Michael Jordan that I once heard.

At the height of his popularity, Michael Jordan was under investigation for gambling on the game of basketball, a definite no-no that is punishable by a total and complete ban from the game. However, banning the king of the game was like the U.S. Congress threatening to exercise the “nuclear option” in 2005. In addition to being a marketing bonanza for the game, Michael Jordan also brought a sense of innocence and purity to the game, which had been missing for some time. People inside the NBA wanted to avoid the worst case scenario at all costs; they were looking for some type of compromise.

In a sad twist of fate, Michael Jordan’s father was killed during this time, and some people have suggested that Michael Jordan’s temporary leave of absence from the game of basketball was more about his punishment for gambling on the game, than a personal choice to take time off to reflect on his father’s passing.

I mention this story because the feelings people have for Allison Dubois are very similar to the feelings people had for Michael Jordan. People wanted Michael Jordan to succeed, they wanted him to carry the mantle for the game and inspire new generations of players. Still, insiders who were there, know that Michael Jordan had weaknesses like everyone else; that sometimes one’s ego gets carried away with success.

As far as why I feel a need to voice these concerns, well, the best way to answer that is that there is a new movement within the world of parapsychology. It’s a grass roots movement born on the internet, and it doesn’t care or invest in the egos of mediums or paranormal historians who wish to paint their own view of reality. This movement believes in science, and like other scientists, this movement doesn’t shy away from peer review or healthy debate. I am a part of this movement.

Whether Allison Dubois is the genuine article or not will not be discovered through the newspapers. Journalists blatantly make stories up, and brazenly embellish or distort any element of fact they find. So stories like Tony M's impress me most.

People are complex, and will often add trickery to talent, especially if it helps them make money. This may make them generally untrustworthy, but does not mean they are complete frauds.

In psychic matters, doubt probably causes more damage than in any other sphere. Doubt can change a wonder into a washout. So Marcel must be right: the way ahead needs to be by enlightened scientific enquiry (in a broader sense than the current paradigm), and by peer review.

My point is that I don't think Alison Dubois is any worse or any better than any other Medium. What's important is to be entertaining. As far as parapsychology goes? I figure everyone is a little bit psychic, everyone probably has a little bit of mediumistic ability, but it's just that some people are better talkers than others, better showman, more charismatic, more entertaining, and more tuned in because they've trained themselves to listen to those little voices inside their head. Like I've stated, my favorite "Medium" is John Edward. I wish Crossing Over was still on TV.


Art, what role do you see science playing in the search for a theory of non-local consciousness? Or do you care?

“Could it be that William and Art's comments are going a bit off topic??? :-)”

“I would hope that people would not see my blog post or the articles it links to as a referendum on parapsychology, but as a valid investigation into the claims of a very public and vocal medium.”

It is the term “valid investigation” here that suggests the existing scientific paradigm is capable of discovering and understanding these psi phenomena. Because we are so enthralled and entrenched in the existing scientific model most cannot even conceive of an entirely new mental model that may be used to prove the validity of psi phenomena.


We think in the 21st century we are beyond such mental paralysis. Think again. :-)

“We might like psi-related phenomena (and the people who produce them) to be straightforward and uncomplicated, but the universe seems to have other ideas.”

From my point of view we have only begun to discover the mysteries of the universe and the manner in which to discover and validate those mysteries. The scientific method has served us well in the materialistic world but has been less than effective with psi phenomena. A new model may be forthcoming. Or not.

My point being these psi phenomena may be straightforward and uncomplicated but we need a different mental model to evaluate them. I suspect the universe is revealing these psi phenomena every moment of our lives; we are just unaware of them.

Art, what role do you see science playing in the search for a theory of non-local consciousness? Or do you care? - Marcel Cairo
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I don't think we will ever be allowed to know 100% absolutely for certain that there is life after death. The reason is that the death of someone we love is the #1 most powerful lesson in separation the soul has to experience. If we knew absolutely 100% for certain that there was life after death the loss of someone we love would lose some of it's emotional impact. I think a large part of the reason "why we are here" is to experience separation and it happens in a myriad of ways. From the moment we are born and we separate from our mothers and that umbilical cord is cut till the moment we die and our own death becomes a lesson in separation to our loved ones we leave behind. Because of those overwhelming feelings of oneness and connectedness on the other side it may not be possible for the soul to become a separate unique individual while residing in heaven so it (the soul) has to come here to the Physical Universe to learn what it means and how it feels to be a separate, unique, individual.

No matter how much science investigates "life after death" there will always be some doubt attached to the question. I think it's that way on purpose. I believe that everything happens for a reason, even the bad stuff. There are no coincidences and everything happens for a reason. Everything, even when people disagree with me. It's just more "duality and separation" for my soul to experience.

I believe it's possible to respect science and its fruits while simultaneously rejecting it (in its present form) as the most effective way to fathom the nature of reality.

For anyone who's ever had a powerful and unusual experience of a "psychic" nature it's plain that present science is very limited and includes certain false assumptions, period.

No amount of argument, no matter how well reasoned, is likely to change my mind, but I do have my own doubts from time to time.

When this happens, I start to list the most unusual experiences I've had in my life.

The effort to focus on these expands my consciousness and soon I am remembering additional experiences; the list expands and expands, and I am brought again to the realization that human consciousness exists within a spectrum from a very narrow "ego-bound" place to something much more expansive. (Think of Huxley's "reducing valve," or of Colin Wilson's "Faculty X.")

What seems true or self-evident at one end of this spectrum begins to lose its hard edges and even its validity as you move along the spectrum.

There are techniques for doing this, but -- in our present culture, anyway -- they are more art than science.

In short, I'm not at all impressed with peer reviewed science, the scientific method, repeatable laboratory experiments, or even parapsychology as an effective way of exploring the inner -- this is not a task it is designed to do.

It looks from outside in, whereas what's required is looking from inside out, and personally and immediately -- not as some imaginary impartial observer.

Of course there are ways of combining the two approaches but this is not really what we call science, for the most part.

(Hooking up meditating Tibetan monks to EEG devices is one way of combining them, but quite clumsy.)

Future disciplines addressing this conundrum shall arise and gain mainstream or "official" acceptance, disciplines that many today would consider laughable and appropriate only for the lunatic fringe.

This will never happen in those societies in which the majority of citizens are "ego-bound," however, and in which the predominant science reflects this condition.

Regards

Bill I.

http://www.realitytest.com/doors.htm


“I believe it's possible to respect science and its fruits while simultaneously rejecting it (in its present form) as the most effective way to fathom the nature of reality.”

Well stated. Right now we do not have a more effective method of attempting to validate psi phenomena. Until we do we have to dance with the process that brought us here? But things change, people learn, discoveries are made.

I have always maintained that we are just on the cusp of discovering the mysteries of the universe. About 150 years ago we had an industrial revolution maybe we are entering an era of a psi revolution. Or not.

“In short, I'm not at all impressed with peer reviewed science, the scientific method, repeatable laboratory experiments, or even parapsychology as an effective way of exploring the inner -- this is not a task it is designed to do.”

That makes at least two of us in the world.

Watching that scientist try to make life in a test tube on TV last night was almost comedy as he is attempting to try to prove his materialistic paradigm valid. He is playing god without the abilities of a god. Yet.

But I dare not laugh or become arrogant or reject his efforts as he is at least in the process of finding out what does not work.

Being a father of two toddlers, I have the good fortune of only sleeping in intervals of three hours at a time. So here I am again, starring at this machine wondering what I would be doing if this were 1988 instead of 2008. What was life like before blogging? My old brain can't even remember.

Anyway, I'm sitting here reading the responses from Art, Bill I and William, and I realized that there's a major difference in philosophy here. For some, the metaphysical experience is solely an individual one; while for me and others, it is both personal and communal.

Some are satisfied with Stephen J. Gould's "non-overlapping magisteria" philosophy; while for me and others, there's a clear overlapping of science and metaphysics, where the role of science is crucial in legitimizing and redeeming the spiritual experience as a tool of learning, creativity and healing.

Still, this post is not about philosophy. This post is about the integrity of those public figures who represent the spiritual path, and their commitment to honesty and truth.

When Hillary Clinton's remark about her experience entering Sarajevo under gunfire was discovered to be fantasy; she was called on it and forced to retract.

In my blog post, the question is simple - "Did Allison Dubois exaggerated or lie about her role in using psychic abilities to solve high profile criminal cases, and shouldn't we within the spiritual community call her on it if she did?"

WOULD ANYONE CARE TO ANSWER THAT???

See, this question is at the heart of everything that psi research and their researchers are fighting for - legitimacy.

Parapsychology cannot continue to exist as a science if the people who represent it don't hold themselves to the same higher standard of truth and integrity that other sciences do.

I'll tell you something else, as much as I know that the "trickster character" exists as an archetype of sorts, I tend to agree with Dr. Dean Radin when he said this about George Hansen's trickster hypothesis -

In other words, whenever imagination fails, someone will invariably assert that we'll never be able to understand [fill in the blank], and so they come up with trickster-like theories to allow us to place our ignorance into a mysterious netherworld lying somewhere beyond our understanding. Failures of imagination are common, but promoting theories based on those failures is tantamount to glorifying an anti-scientific position.

The lines are drawn folks. Science this way, magical thinking that way.

You know where I am.

“In short, I'm not at all impressed with peer reviewed science, the scientific method, repeatable laboratory experiments, or even parapsychology as an effective way of exploring the inner -- this is not a task it is designed to do.”

Call me stupid, but I don’t understand why Science can’t be used to test the validity of Psi-claims. Actually, it already is, eg by The Windbridge Institute, which MP has previously blogged about. It’s only the mainstream scientists who don’t get involved. Take remote viewing, for instance. If a double or triple-blind experiment shows a ‘remote viewer’ drawing or describing a distant object or landscape with a high degree of accuracy, then that’s science isn’t it? We’re not looking for cast-iron certainty, only odds much greater than chance, ie high probability of psi. Seems simple enough to me. The only problem is in the refusal of the scientific establishment to get involved, because it has no mechanistic theory for what it is testing, and because there’s no money in it.

Perhaps the perfect example is Rupert Sheldrake, who is careful to use the scientific method but has it dismissed without any consideration at all by Richard Dawkins:

http://www.sheldrake.org/D&C/controversies/Dawkins.html

The Taboo of Psi.

Once you get involved with this line of research your reputation as a "serious" scientist will invariably come into question, because that's not what "serious" scientists do.

And that of course affects your ability to secure funding, without which you ain't getting off the ground.

Marcel ,
Surely we will never know for sure if Allison Dubois helped the police solve crimes as long as the police refuse to say categorically whether she did or didn't. As some of them are refusing to comment it suggests to me that they did use her but don't want to admit it. I believe this is quite common. There are psychics here in the UK who have claimed they help the police -e.g. Diane Lazarus who won Britain's Psychic Challenge.However the police are always very coy about these claims.
One exception is Det. Inspector Eamonn O' Reilly of the Irish garda who has said he met with Diane about a murder case in Ireland.
www.dianelazarus.co.uk

Perhaps the perfect example is Rupert Sheldrake, who is careful to use the scientific method but has it dismissed without any consideration at all by Richard Dawkins. - Ross
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I've thought about this question a lot. For those people who have made up their minds arguing is somewhat akin to the Robert Heinlen quote, “Never try to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and it annoys the pig.” I am so over asking, wondering, and arguing about "is it real?" I've made up my mind. I've had a few mystical experiences of my own and I have a high degree of confidence that it is. Saying that, I reserve a small amount of skepticism ~ 2% just in case there is something I haven't thought of yet. But 98% of me is squarely on the side of believers.

Pearl wrote:

As some of them are refusing to comment it suggests to me that they did use her but don't want to admit it. I believe this is quite common.
Pearl, this line of argument is essentially fueling a conspiracy of silence theory whose aim is to only deflect any further inquiry into the truth. There have been many police departments, both in the US and abroad, who have openly discussed their involvement with physics.

In fact, one can trace the popularity of psychic claims to helping solve crimes in the U.S. to Noreen Renier, a psychic who lectured at the FBI Virginia Bureau in 1981. Take a peek at Noreen's website. She has testimonials there from actual FBI agents and other authorities who she has assisted. She doesn't need to use the "no one will talk" excuse.

Whenever there is a high profile crime, police departments field hundreds to thousands of calls from psychics eager to be of service and extra eager to validate their own skills. This happens everyday across America.

Allison Dubois took credit for helping to solve some very high profile cases, and she and Kelsey Grammar (the Producer behind Medium) sold this story to the TV viewing audience.

The fact is, not one of Alison Dubois claims can be corroborated by the people involved in these cases. In some instances, they have no knowledge of her at all.

"The Texas Rangers have never used psychics and have no plans to do so," spokesman Tom Vinger stated flatly. Glendale police spokesman Michael Pena stated that the detective who handles missing persons cases "does not recall using Dubois at all in [one specific] case, or in any other cases."
Of course I understand that the TV show is fictionalized, that's not the point. Allison Dubois has made several TV appearances and written a handful of books, where she continues to claim a high level success in helping law enforcement solve crimes. If these claims are discovered to be fabricated or exaggerated, then why should anyone believe anything else she claims or has done with her mediumship skills? If mediums develop the reputation of being "liars" what benefactor or institution is going to want to fund medium research.

Why not ask Dr. Julie Bieschel, Dr. Gary Schwartz's former assistant and current director of the Windbridge Institute, how hard it is to get funding for medium research.

I am disheartened from the responses posted here, and by their total avoidance in addressing the core question posed. That question is, "Does a celebrity TV medium who exaggerates or lies about their psychic powers hurt overall psi research?"

Why doesn't anyone answer this question, instead of going on about half-baked theories and philosophy?

Art,
You don't have to convince me! I'm talking about the 'Great Uncommitted' out there. Skeptics, of course, are beyond reach.

"Does a celebrity TV medium who exaggerates or lies about their psychic powers hurt overall psi research?"

Sorry, Marcel. Yes, I don’t see how it couldn’t hurt research. It makes mediums seem generally shady characters. It drives away potential investigators and sponsors of research. It creates more sceptics out of the ‘Great Uncommitted’. It adds fuel to the sceptic fires. All bad.

Marcel:

"Anyway, I'm sitting here reading the responses from Art, Bill I and William, and I realized that there's a major difference in philosophy here. For some, the metaphysical experience is solely an individual one; while for me and others, it is both personal and communal."

Dear Marcel:

For me, "metaphysical experience" is primarily, not solely, an individual pursuit.

This starts with your own immediate experience, not someone else's.

There's no reason not to engage in shared explorations, however, or not to compare notes; in fact some of my most powerful experiences have been shared with others.

When William James and company investigated the activities of Leonora Piper, this was a shared experience. What he and his fellow investigators didn't try, however, was to temporarily discard their "scientific objectivity" and attempt to become mediums themselves. Had they done so, they could have sought advice through Leonora's utterances then followed this up with anything they might have obtained from their own newly discovered inner sources.

Of course they would likely have kept quiet about any such investigations, not wishing to damage their professional reputations beyond the ridicule that was already heaped upon them. (Maybe one of them might have published their experiences posthumously.)

"Some are satisfied with Stephen J. Gould's "non-overlapping magisteria" philosophy; while for me and others, there's a clear overlapping of science and metaphysics, where the role of science is crucial in legitimizing and redeeming the spiritual experience as a tool of learning, creativity and healing."

1. There are ways to create some overlap but I lack the time and space to elaborate. (Actually, certain areas already overlap; few have noticed, however, owing to a compartmentalization of knowledge and understanding.)

2. Why does the spiritual experience require any legitimizing? Raising this question suggests there is something illegitimate about it. Suppose you have this backwards? Legitimizing refers to aligning with prevailing mass belief but suppose the latter is, at best, severely distorted?

3. Most importantly, many have personally experienced some distinct form of "psi." Why should they care whether others believe them or not, whether those in the scientific community have come to grips with this area or not?

Experiential techniques that can enable such experiences have been available for thousands of years, long before anyone came up with the scientific method; if those in the scientific community (and those who ardently support a science uber alles perspective) are too proud, too impressed with their own beliefs to practice these, I can't help them.

"Still, this post is not about philosophy. This post is about the integrity of those public figures who represent the spiritual path, and their commitment to honesty and truth.

When Hillary Clinton's remark about her experience entering Sarajevo under gunfire was discovered to be fantasy; she was called on it and forced to retract.

("Comment is free but facts are sacred.")

In my blog post, the question is simple - "Did Allison Dubois exaggerated or lie about her role in using psychic abilities to solve high profile criminal cases, and shouldn't we within the spiritual community call her on it if she did?"

WOULD ANYONE CARE TO ANSWER THAT???"

I don't know and I don't care.

Over the years I've witnessed some very impressive psychic "feats" by those who had no interest at all in the embarrassment that would likely accrue were they to tell the whole world about these.

I've had my own memorable experiences, too, and carefully recorded these.

Once you experience, say, a clear-cut experience of pre-cognition, or telepathy, you don't require anyone's approval to know that such experiences exist; you have no need to wait for some peer-reviewed article stating that such things are possible, and you may as well shoot yourself if you're going to throw out your own experience because a bunch of ego-bound scientists haven't officially approved of such things.

(Note that my occasional circles of experimentalists have included scientists; they are fine people who haven't allowed their professional pursuits to get in the way of their often profound personal experiences.)

"See, this question is at the heart of everything that psi research and their researchers are fighting for - legitimacy."

This is a waste of time, in my opinion, as this degenerates into a fight between believers. You can see this in action long ago, when fools ridiculed James' and Myers' carefully acquired evidence without even closely examining it.

Instead, a far more effective approach is for those who are seriously interested to quietly pursue the techniques above, sharing amongst themselves.

Over the long run, this will change mass beliefs, change what is officially accepted.

"Parapsychology cannot continue to exist as a science if the people who represent it don't hold themselves to the same higher standard of truth and integrity that other sciences do."

This is a separate issue -- one of credibility -- from the question of whether parapsychology is well suited for the job.

I suggest it's not.

If you really wish to create an effective discipline for studying and understanding this area there are many possible routes.

I'll throw out one oddball route of the many possibilities (why not get creative here?)

Take the youthful experiences of Arnold J. Toynbee (See http://www.realitytest.com/time02.htm ).

A team might analyze these, practice various techniques, and hit on a way to inculcate such temporal transcendence at will.

Then, this, they could focus on a time and place in which a solid discipline devoted to the investigation of the "paranormal" has arisen.

They borrow (using some form of mediumship) the primary textbook and initiate an experiential teaching institution in our era.

(Of course they'd be ridiculed, but after a few centuries it's possible that the pupils in their academy would have begun to gain some influence in the world at large, changing prevailing beliefs.)

"I'll tell you something else, as much as I know that the "trickster character" exists as an archetype of sorts, I tend to agree with Dr. Dean Radin when he said this about George Hansen's trickster hypothesis -

In other words, whenever imagination fails, someone will invariably assert that we'll never be able to understand [fill in the blank], and so they come up with trickster-like theories to allow us to place our ignorance into a mysterious netherworld lying somewhere beyond our understanding. Failures of imagination are common, but promoting theories based on those failures is tantamount to glorifying an anti-scientific position."

What's so bad about that? Maybe in time science -- as we know it -- will be as obsolete as the worship of Horus, Isis, and Osirus.

"The lines are drawn folks. Science this way, magical thinking that way."

"Magical thinking" sounds so much more fun, so much freer and more creative.

(Really, though, this needn't be an either-or proposition, and my apologies if I've offended anyone. Certainly science has its uses, its wonderful practical applications, and then, too, certain areas of science can be mighty interesting.)

Regards

Bill I.

My statements were that MAYBE in the future we will find a new paradigm that will be a much more accurate approach to validating psi phenomena and give people much more assurance that life after death exists and that there is real meaning and purpose to their lives.

“Parapsychology cannot continue to exist as a science if the people who represent it don't hold themselves to the same higher standard of truth and integrity that other sciences do”

Did you mean like political science? She is a medium. My research into mediums suggests we have all types of mediums when it comes to integrity. Recently I read a book on parapsychology and the parapsychologists had much more integrity than the scientists that were asked to review the data.

“The lines are drawn folks. Science this way, magical thinking that way.”

Science has much more magical thinking in it then one can possibly imagine. Example: Darwinism has such gaps in it you could drive an aircraft carrier through it sideways but it is taught in our schools as fact. Human behavior such as emotions, the paradigm effect, arrogance, tunnel vision, etc affect the ability of scientists using the scientific method to find truths.

“See, this question (i.e. did she lie) is at the heart of everything that psi research and their researchers are fighting for - legitimacy.”

Whether she lied or exaggerated or told the absolute truth is only one data point. My point has been we may in the future find a new approach or paradigm and discover a higher level and more accurate validation for psi phenomena.

This “higher form of validated” information may have a profound impact on how societies function and how we conduct both mental and physical healing in our societies. I suspect but do not know that the world’s drug problem and many of our human behavioral problems may be due to most humans’ fear of death and a feeling of a lack of meaning and purpose to their lives.

To suggest that Art, Bill I, and William do not concern themselves with the societal aspects of validating psi phenomena is in my not so humble opinion misconstrued. I personally see tremendous advantages to validating these psi phenomena to reduce anxiety and frustrations in our society, especially in a very competitive society.

But the harshness of a society may give souls greater opportunities for development in love and compassion. There is much we do not know. Yet.

Marcel, I think the reason people haven't taken up the question of whether DuBois actually solved those crimes is simple - we don't know! It is hard to believe that no law enforcement agency would admit to working with her, considering how many agencies have come forward to participate in TV shows like Psychic Detectives. On the other hand, DuBois does seem to have legitimate abilities, if reports of her testing under controlled conditions can be believed.

Bottom line: Who knows? Maybe she has actual abilities but also engages in "creative" embellishment. This would fit the profile of the trickster, and many - though not all - psychics and mediums do seem to have distinct trickster attributes. (Uri Geller and Arthur Ford come to mind.)

I'm afraid this kind of ambiguity may be built into the very subject matter at hand. That's why I'm not so sure that a strictly "scientific" approach is going to work. It will yield some data, but will it ever penetrate to the heart of the mystery? For the exploration of spiritual realities, personal experience may remain the only way to really know - just as mystics have told us for millennia.


When people ask me why I care so much about science and psi, my response is somewhat cheeky, I say, "I am a spirit having a physical experience, and I'm looking for a map to take me back home."

Though I think many of the "science-free" arguments put forward are sound, logical and maybe less stress inducing than my own, I can't help but feel that trying to exist in a paradigm other than our own is a bit Utopian and isolationist.

Science is limited, but it's not prohibitive. I am not afraid to sit at its table, even when my non-materialist world view hasn't been invited.

I most definitely believe that the show "Medium" on TV is embellished. I imagine if it wasn't, it would get mighty boring after only one or two shows. That's probably why they took the show, Crossing Over, off the air. It became repetitious.

Marcel, I'd like to address both your questions, since this issue is obviously one that matters a great deal to you personally, as well as professionally.

First of all, I know next to nothing abut Dubois. I don't watch TV and most of what little I know about her comes from reading about Gary Schwartz's work. That said, she and John Edward are the most visible public figures in the world of mediumistic communication (I don't include the vile and spider-like Sylvia Browne), so yes, they should be held accountable for statements they make that can cast psi and mediumship in an even more dubious (note that Dubois is nearly a palindrome of "dubious"; coincidence?) light than they already live under.

I don't know how you'd go about this, but as a journalist, I'm all for holding people to the fire for their statements. Whatever the means of asking her, I think the key question must be, "Don't you believe you have a responsibility as the most public figure in this area, to be circumspect with your claims unless they are nigh-bulletproof, and to be unambiguous about and provide easily accessible online corroboration for what you do claim?"

One thing: I have zero interest in some angry, "gotcha" debunking of her claims. Leave that to the pseudoskeptics. Nothing can change what she's said in the past. What needs to change is the nature of the communication going forward. Dubois, Schwartz and the rest must be more professional in their actions or they risk tarring the entire field with the same brush.

Now, as to non-locality and science, this is a tricky one to some degree. Marcel, you're in a combative mood, but I don't think it's appropriate. This is not science versus magical thinking. This is "objective" versus "subjective." Both have validity. I agree with the poster who said that the scientific method is not a good tool for exploring the inner life. That's true. If I say that I love my daughters, no one can prove that I'm either lying or telling the truth (yes, there are amazing new fMRI lie detectors, but such machines merely show correlation of blood flow and are not reliable).

Similarly, if I claim to have had an out of body experience or a flash of precognition, there is no way for anyone to disprove or for me to prove using the chain of observation, hypothesis, experiment and theory that my experience was real or imaginary. It was subjectively real for me; that is the nature of mind. Even if you believe that the mind is an illusory epiphenomenon of neural activty and nothing more, the inner life still has a reality of its own for its experiencer, and science has no way of accessing that, which is why psi, healing through visualization meditation and other causal aspects of the mind are so deeply disturbing to many materialists and skeptical scientists.

However, science can and will tell us much about the mind and nonlocality, as long as we remember to respect the inner life and the importance and reality of the subjective experience. Now we come to the tricky part about the brain, mind and nonlocality. This is how it breaks down for me (Dean Radin is also in this camp though he has not expressed it this way): We have a set of conflicting evidence about the nature of the mind. On one hand, we have the clear evidence from neuroscience that the brain generates the activity of the mind. Despite all the protests about the "transmission theory," it appears to me to be a desperate attempt to cling to some sort of dualism and deny the material nature of our existence. I don't buy it. Sorry, but there's just no evidence that the brain is some sort of receiver, as much as anybody may want to spin it. So I think yes, the brain generates the mind.

However, we also have a huge body of evidence that supports psi functioning, the causal power of intention, the effects of the will and mind on the body, and survival of consciousness, to the point where only delusional skeptic can deny that not only does "the mind" exist, but it can directly produce effects outside the skull and defy what we know today as the "laws of physics."

So what do we do with this conflicting evidence? As Einstein realized when formulating special relativity, when you have certain facts established, other seeming absolutes must break down. In relativity, space and time ceased to be absolutes at high speeds. In consciousness, the only way to reconcile the evidence of the "material mind" and the psi evidence is to conclude that what we think of as "matter" or "material" must break down and become something else. Simply put, it appears (at least to me) that the mind is created by the brain, and the brain is indeed matter. But it is MATTER that is not what we think it is.

This is supported by Bell's Theorem, which confirms nonlocality and entanglement, as well as quantum models of consciousness such as that one put forth by Stuart Hameroff. When we take things to the quantum level (and work is underway to locate entanglement in living systems, something many scientists claim in impossible, which is a guarantee that it will be found), we see that what we think of as matter has two important qualities: a) it is actually energy at the quantum level and we only perceive it as matter, and b) Because of entanglement, it is unified with all other matter regardless of space or time (this may seem like a stretch of the idea of entanglement, but how else to explain some psi effects that seem distance- and time-independent?). So all matter is actually energy that exists everywhere and everyWHEN.

For the mind, this means that the brain forms and forms the mind with it, and as the mind develops it develops simultaneously isolated within the cranium and connected via entanglement at the quantum level with all other matter/energy in the cosmos. In essence, I suggest that the mind exists simultaneously within the skull as the activity of the brain and everywhere and everywhen else in reality. We experience this connectedness sometimes as psi, tap it when we use intentionality to heal or make seeds grow, and so on. This theory also provides for survival, because in a way it reverses the "transmission" paradigm and turns the brain into a sort of broadcasting station, sending individual consciousness into the cosmos at the quantum level as energy. So just as a TV signal doesn't stop traveling through space if you destroy the broadcast station, the "consciousness signal" continues after the body dies. But because this signal is aware and conscious, it maintains the personality and cognition of the physical being.

You can call this theory "trans-materialism," "para-materialism" or "meta-materialism" if you like, but I think it's a way to reconcile all the evidence without infantile evasions about dualism or magical thinking. Marcel, science's job would be to confirm this theory or something like it and produce a Unified Theory of Mind.

Sorry this went on so long, but at least I tried to stay on-topic. Cheers.

I started my long post earlier in the day and had to leave to go to a meeting, then came back hours later to finish. Since the thread has advanced, let me weigh in on Allison D. I think it's extremely likely that law enforcement agencies would lie about having used a psychic, for the simple reason that they know their local papers would be blitzed with letters demanding resignations. Better to avoid the ridicule and hassle and deny.

What would be more revealing are records: either police records or newspaper archives that confirm Dubois' participation in a case. As for whether such claims, should they be false, hurt psi research, I don't think so. The academic and research world is, for the most part, separate from the world of pop culture. Finding out that Dubois made false claims might make some skeptics roll their eyes, but I have a hard time believing it would impact research at the university or private lab level.

Michael,

you said:

01-"While Schwartz's early experiments are certainly open to some criticism, his more recent work - which involves triple-blind studies - is harder to debunk."

Well, give a look at

http://www.skepdic.com/essays/novelway.html

"A Novel Way to Make an Ass of Yourself
Gary Schwartz Rides Again" by Robert Todd Carroll

Best wishes.

Interesting, Vitor. Carroll does seem to have identified a serious problem with Schwartz's methodology - namely, a mishandling of the controls. The key paragraph is the one that begins "Interesting concept." If the sitter had lost a parent, then the control reading should have involved a dead parent. To have a control reading that involved a dead "peer" is to stack the deck in favor of positive results.

If Carroll is wrong about this, I'd like to know where he's mistaken. It seems to me that Schwartz has made a rather elementary (and silly) error.

I haven't read the piece, Michael, but I do know about Schwartz's methodology, and it seems to me that this is something of a straw man argument in that it is an unresolvable outgrowth of the protocol. If we're presuming that the control readings are spontaneous and legitimate (that is, not the result of cuing or coaching), then how could any researcher guarantee that the control reading would produce a dead parent so that it closely matched the sitter's reading?

I'm not a medium so maybe Marcel can answer this one. Is there any way to control who "comes through?" I suspect not. If not, then what was Schwartz supposed to do, get all the control readings and cherry pick which ones conformed most closely to the sitter's circumstances in order to give them the best chance of being "fooled" by the control reading? That seems to completely violate the experimental protocol.

Also, just because a sitter has lost a parent doesn't mean he or she hasn't lost other people as well: grandparents, friends, a mentor, etc. On one hand, I don't know that there is a way to "fix" this problem without corrupting the experiment by cuing the control readings or cherry picking them; on the other hand, I'm not sure this is the flaw it seems to be on its surface. I'll have to read the piece to make sure I haven't made an ass of myself.

Tim, thanks for your reply. Very intriguing ideas. I actually stopped being a dualist last year, though I still can't wrap my brain/mind around any theory for explaining what I experience (or perceive) as a medium - back and forth communication with the discarnate.
You wrote -

But because this signal is aware and conscious, it maintains the personality and cognition of the physical being.
Does this imply the ability to communicate in "the present" as perceived by the medium?

Marcel:

I would assume so. If the mind were only present as a sort of "TV signal" sent out by the brain, then after the brain died the signal would be just a kind of recording. Based on your experiences and so many others, this is clearly not the case. Dean Radin has suggested that some sort of panpsychism may be partially at work, where Mind continues to exist at the quantum level after the death of the body. Once created, always existing, as it were.

This idea, if true, raises some tough ethical questions. If someone dies of Alzheimers, which mind persists, the healthy one or the diseased one, and would you be doing them a favor by euthanizing them at diagnosis? If someone kills a child, does he condemn them to an eternity of living with a child's mind, or can the mind continue to grow after death? So many questions.

OK, I've read the piece. First of all, typical snide, personal attack journalism. Exactly what I've come to expect from these pricks.

As to Carroll's arguments, I find only one of them compelling: the fact that only eight subjects rated readings. That small a sample size doesn't prove much. His argument about the parent vs. peer readings biasing the raters doesn't hold water because each reading included numerous facts of which the nature of the deceased was only one. Yes, this is an odd way to conduct the rating part of the experiment and I can't see a good reason for it, but the fact is we don't know if or how much the difference in the deceased between the sitter readings and control readings affected the overall ratings of the readings, and neither does Carroll. He's insinuating that sloppy methodology automatically renders the experiment invalid; a typically skeptical trick. It might; it might not. We can't know without published transcripts and ratings, which Schwartz somehow refuses to provide.

The rest is typically empty skeptical insinuation and nastiness, like the nonsense about the raters being chosen for their "Yes" or "unsure" answers to a survey. So what? Or the idea that they didn't have the training to rate the readings. Huh? Who needs training to say, "Yes, that applies to my life" or "No, that's nothing like my life"?

Finally, I get angry when amateurs like Carroll and Randi presume they know more about science and experimental design than Ph.D.s who have been working in the field for decades. Gary Schwartz may be a frustrating figure (and for one, I'm thrilled that Julie Bieschel is continuing his work so she can avoid his errors in methodology, secrecy and limelight-seeking), but give the guy some credit for earning the letters after his name and knowing something about what he's doing.

His argument about the parent vs. peer readings biasing the raters doesn't hold water because each reading included numerous facts of which the nature of the deceased was only one.

But wouldn't it have been better to use equivalent readings (parent or peer) for the controls? If I'd been doing the experiment, I would have given each sitter who lost a parent four or more transcripts involving dead parents, and let them rate them all. The way the test was actually set up, it seems as if the rater could hardly help knowing which transcript was genuine and which was the control.

I agree about the snarkiness of the critique, but I'm so accustomed to skeptics taking this tone that I hardly even react to it anymore.

Michael,

I always thought that Dr. Schwartz's triple blind study paper was poorly communicated, or maybe I should say, "unnecessarily confusing."

I think that Dr. Schwartz was implying that the readings were transcribed in such a way to eliminate any mention of either the word(s) "father/mother" or "peer". With this in mind, reread Dr. Schwartz's description -

Discarnate descriptions were then paired to optimize differences in age, physical description, personality description, cause of death, and hobbies/activities of the discarnate.
The discarnates were ONLY paired in this manner, but this was not the information that the sitter (rater) was evaluating.

For instance, one reading could talk about a man who liked to fix motorcycles on the weekend, and the control reading could mention a man who liked to tinker with model trains on the weekend. See, this is a pairing of two readings based on "different" hobbies.

Remember, that neither the transcriber nor the tester knows if any of these validations are true or not. The only thing that is known is that Reading X corresponds to Sitter X. So, if you are Sitter X and your father liked to tinker with model trains on the weekend, you would surely grade this reading with high marks, even though the word "father" is never mentioned in the reading.

Now, let's say there were two readings where a medium commented that "this man liked to tinker with trains on the weekend." Knowing that this could be (no one knows) an extremely personal validation for the sitter, giving two readings to the same sitter with matching hobbies might inadvertently create doubt in the sitter's judgment of the readings based solely on a strong emotional response to just one item int he reading. Do you follow?

Now, what I just explained may make skeptics say, "Aha! The sitters can't pick out their own relatives in a side-by-side line-up," but you would be amazed how many people on paper sound like someone else.

Just imagine how many people might fit this description... Loves golf, a work-a-holic, frequented Mandalay Bay in Vegas, jumped out of plane for his birthday, invested in real estate as a hobby, ate pasta like it was water.

It's not that hard to imagine many fathers (or peers) who could fit this bill, so I don't think that by pairing a peer with a parent Dr. Schwartz was tipping the scales in any way. I think the key think is not to place two of people with the same qualities right next to each other.

What do you think?

“I can't help but feel that trying to exist in a paradigm other than our own is a bit Utopian and isolationist.”

I suspect that the possibility exists that a newer more highly developed mental model will actually do the opposite of utopian and isolationist views and bring about a clearer more comprehensive view of reality. Now we tend to judge by appearances and know little about the underlying reality of those appearances.

This is the wonder of the human mind although very rare we have the ability to break out of our existing paradigm and create a whole new mental model. This creation process not only with paradigms but also with all aspects of life is one of the great joys of discovery and realization.

I sometimes wonder if infinite Oneness and perfect Intelligence does not go through an involution of consciousness to experience the joy of an on going constant creation on an infinite scale.

“Everything changes, nothing remains without change.” Buddha

I am sure the Buddha would agree that even paradigms change but we know not how or when.

Again scientists using the scientific method have failed to validate to most people’s satisfaction that life after death exist or explain the meaning and purpose of life; nor most of the mysteries of life. Most people rely on faith to sustain them and it has proved to an efficient but often an ineffective approach to dealing with life’s greatest questions.

If we look at the evolution of the consciousness of humans we see knowledge slowly but surely replacing faith with knowledge. Contained within this new knowledge “may be” an entirely different universal paradigm that will revolutionize the way humans view themselves and the world.

Marcel: What do you think?

That would make sense, but if so, the paper fails to explain it. And why pair a parent with a peer? (Jeez, try saying that three times fast.) The peers of college students are going to have very different hobbies and lifestyles than the parents of college students. Why not pair off parents, or pair off peers? At least this way the control transcript would be comparable to the genuine one ...

I am intrigued, Tim, when you say the mind creates the brain. You do not see the brain as a transducer. But you say that Matter is not really Matter, it is Quantum energy in disguise. And Quantum energy was created by? Do you see something alive at the heart of the universe, or do you see the forces of Nature (laws, constants) as blind and uninformed by Consciousness?

I am intrigued, Tim, when you say the brain creates the mind. You do not see the brain as a transducer. But you say that Matter is not really Matter, it is Quantum energy in disguise. And Quantum energy was created by? Do you see something alive at the heart of the universe, or do you see the forces of Nature (laws, constants) as blind and uninformed by Consciousness?

“If someone kills a child, does he condemn them to an eternity of living with a child's mind, or can the mind continue to grow after death?”

There appears to be two schools of thought on this issue. One is and the most popular is that the child continues on as a child growing into adulthood in another dimension and is taught by adult spirits on the other side. Many spirits that have communicated through mediums talk about working with children on the other side. Anna, *Dr. Harlow’s sister left a note for her mother saying just such a thing two weeks after she had passed.

Dr. Newton author of the book journey of the soul tells his readers that his subjects under hypnosis tell him that they return to the other side as mature souls. From my point of view maybe it depends on the maturity of the soul as to whether the soul returns to the spirit world as a child or an adult.

As far as the adult mind continuing to grow after death again there appears to be two schools of thought. One is the mind does indeed grow after death but others say that the earth experience is what gives the mind opportunities to grow. Again it may depend on the maturity of the soul and the dimension the soul resides in after it crosses over.

Your statement about so many questions is right on. But without those questions what would life be like? Would there even be life, as we know it? Our levels of unawareness make us unique. Oneness becomes a multiplicity of souls through It’s ability to become unaware. I.e. involution.

* Dr. Harlow author of “ a life after death” is one of my personal favorite books. What a interesting person Dr. Harlow appeared to be and what interesting paranormal phenomena he had happen to him in his life.

I don't have an answer to that one, Ross. That may end up lying outside the bounds of science, esp. now that cosmologists are questioning the entire inflation model that's been the standard for the origin of the cosmos for years.

If you threatened me with having to watch reality TV if I didn't answer, I'd say that I don't buy into the idea of an anthropomorphic Deity or Creator. I think winding the concept of the creative power of the universe into such a petty, manmade shell is juvenile and ridiculous. Beyond that, I think the most likely answer is that like with the brain and mind, the mundane gave rise to the extraordinary. The universe appeared from some mechanism that was purely mechanical but fitted with laws that made the appearance of life inevitable. As that life developed consciousness, Mind and Intelligence began to pervade the cosmos until they became the dominant force. And so Mind and we continue to evolve, in part driving our own evolution in a subconscious way because our minds interact with the matter/energy and environments that shape our genes, as well as with our genes themselves.

How's that for unmitigated BS, huh. ;-) Of course, the next question becomes, "OK, smart guy, what or who created the laws of physics and biology, and what brought the universe into being to allow us to evolve?" Hell, I don't know. Unless you allow for Big Juju, it's probably an unanswerable question. So we're back where we started, which isn't such a bad thing. There are plenty of mysteries to keep us all busy for many years.

--Tim: “If you threatened me with having to watch reality TV if I didn't answer…”

The ideal threat! I can think of no worse form of mental torture.

--“So we're back where we started, which isn't such a bad thing. There are plenty of mysteries to keep us all busy for many years.”

Andrew Newberg, who has studied spirituality and the brain for 20 years, wrote a book called “Why We Believe” in which he suggests that the human brain can't function without beliefs, without a search for meaning. During meditation, he discovered that the parietal lobe of the brain is shut down, suspending the meditator’s sense of space and time. It was then that meditators entered their samadhi — altered states of "timelessness and spacelessness."

At the end of “Why We Believe” he admits that we may never know all of why we believe. "It is the questions that give us meaning, that drive us forward and fill us with transcendent awe."

Sometimes, listening to people around me talking about Reality TV, I wonder what would happen if I suddenly shouted out, “Transcendent Awe!”.

Art: John Edward is still on TV, his program is called John Edward Cross Country on WE tv. The third season will start in September; reruns are shown sporadically.

Prescott,

I think an update about Schwartz's research would be nice, don't you think? It is very strange too that he refuses to provide the transcripts.

Best wishes.

They'd ask you if "Transcendent Awe" was a new cologne and where they could buy it.

Fascinating discussion, everyone.

In reading through all of this, it seems to me that both Tim and Bill I touched on the core issue when they each mentioned the difficulty science is faced with when confronted with reports of subjective experience.

I think the issue goes much deeper than anyone imagines, including the mediums themselves. If the paradigm of our time could be reduced down to one specific assumption, the assumption that it is predicated on is: There is an objective reality. Even genuine mediums assume that what they are aware of is an external reality, whether their awareness involves intuitive impressions from the living or impressions from what they perceive as realms beyond our own. In either case, the mediums share the assumption that their perception involves something external to them, and respond accordingly. It is this assumption that also creates opportunities for the Sylvia Brown’s and David Thompson’s of the world, creates the gullibility of their clientele, and ultimately is the source of the ammunition for the skeptics.

It is the assumption of the fundamental truth of an objective reality that is repeatedly challenged by the great mystics of all traditions. Whether it is Christ reminding us that the kingdom is within, or Plotinus discussing the “One” at the core of existence, or Lao Tzu reflecting on the mysterious Tao; each of them point to what, when realized, led Thomas Aquinas to comment that all he had learned in decades of religious study was, “nothing but straw.”

Investigating the paranormal will also remain nothing but straw, unless such investigation leads someone to challenge their own fundamental assumptions about reality itself. If they do so relentlessly, they may eventually discover that objectivity is a construct of subjectivity. At that moment, they will understand the kingdom, the “One” and the Tao; but they will be unable to demonstrate what they now understand to anyone else. (If objectivity is itself a construct, how could it ever be demonstrated objectively?)

As for Allison Dubois, I think she does have a highly developed sense of intuition, as have many celebrated mediums. But she doesn’t understand how her own mind works, and she is as certain of an objective reality as anyone else. Mediums may perceive a broader or deeper objective reality, but they still perceive it as external.

MP addressed the heart of the issue when he wrote, “For the exploration of spiritual realities, personal experience may remain the only way to really know - just as mystics have told us for millennia.”

I realize that suggesting that objective reality is a mental construct implies that we’re all hoodwinked to one degree or another. That can be seen as either troubling or amusing, and I’d suggest that the more amusing it seems, the closer one is to realizing it.

I disagree Michael H.

I as a medium am fully aware that what is going on is internal and intrinsic to my consciousness. However, I am also aware that to make distinctions that can be understood by others, that internal consciousness must be filtered through an objective one.

More importantly though, if the illusion of life has forced me to defend the reality of survival in a materialistic paradigm, then I guess that's what I have to do. What I won;t do is surrender to the illusion or to the skeptics, no matter how futile my efforts will ultimately be.

“I realize that suggesting that objective reality is a mental construct implies that we’re all hoodwinked to one degree or another”

If we were not hoodwinked to one degree or another there would be no us there would only be Isness.

Stated another way our unawareness makes us: us. Unique and individual. Ok the perception of unique and individual.


“I disagree with Michael H.”

“However, I am also aware that to make distinctions that can be understood by others, that internal consciousness must be filtered through an objective one.”

It depends on our operational definition of the word “understood”. Michael H is technically correct if we define understood as realization as a means of removing all doubt. A better comment might be that to make distinctions that others can have knowledge of.

We can only give others knowledge not realization. Realization comes from within. That I believe is what Michael H is saying.

The Buddhists call this higher knowledge and lower knowledge. Dr. Hora defines this higher knowledge as understanding or realization and this lower knowledge as a function of our intellect and not our intelligence. I.e. we can be very smart (intellect) and but not very intelligent.

Dr. Hora’s ninth principle is: “Reality cannot be experienced or imagined; it can, however, be realized.”

William’s way of stating and having knowledge of Dr. Hora’s ninth principle (with full credit to Dr. Hora) is: Reality cannot be experienced, imagined, shared, or taught; it can however, be self-realized.

I am certain that cleared everything up. Not.

Miscellaneous comments:

1.) I've just become aware of Marcel's translational gifts. Marcel -- instead of focusing these on "other," have you ever tried to focus these on your own essence or entity? This is really key to obtaining your own best information, as I see it. (By "translation" I refer to mediumship.)

2.) This is in line with Michael H.'s comments, as I see it. My own orientation deals with regions of self that are quite connected compared to the "separation" we ordinarily take for granted and which severely colors our beliefs about "objective reality," physical reality in general (including the nature of matter), and, more specifically, who we are.

(See the simplified "map" of Exercise 5. found at http://www.realitytest.com/doors.htm .)

3.) I grew up with S. Ralph Harlow's granddaughter. She told me long ago that he repudiated much of his early work late in life, as though he'd been dealing with his own "trickster." (My favorite afterdeath book remains Jane Robert's _The Afterdeath Journal of an American Philosopher: The Worldview of William James. Note that Ms. Roberts was extensively tested at one point.)

4.) I can't agree that brain creates mind, instead believing this is backwards, the brain actually quite a transducer.

This is a great thread -- I wish I didn't have to return to work.

Regards

Bill I.

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