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Cyrus Kirkpatrick, who comments here sometimes, has written an ebook on life after death. Amazon has it for only 99 cents. Check it out!
September 08, 2015 | Permalink
I should try to comment here more often. I really fell off the wagon. Anyway if anyone has any questions, just ask me here.
September 09, 2015 at 06:27 AM
Got the sample, glad to see you rejecting the easy out of religious delusion.
As a fellow true skeptic, rather than a materialist fundie, look forward to reading this.
September 09, 2015 at 11:18 AM
Congrats on your accomplishment, Cyrus!
no one |
September 10, 2015 at 03:58 AM
I tend to like Cyrus' comments, so I downloaded his book so quickly, it was like a reflexive action. I don't always heartily agree with everything he writes, but if total agreement with an author was my standard for book purchases, I would end up never reading anything.
As I've said here before, in my opinion, nobody completely knows what they're talking about. We're all like spiritually blind beggars stumbling around in the dark looking for food, while trying to direct other spiritually blind beggars to our sources.
Based on past comment contributions to this blog, Cyrus Kirkpatrick appears to be a spiritually affluent source, so I'm definitely looking forward to reading his book.
September 10, 2015 at 05:03 AM
Congrats on the publication, Cyrus! I put this on my Amazon Wishlist. What would you say is the special "spin" of your book, if any? Or is it a generalist approach via your own particular mind? Just curious, thank you!
Matt Rouge |
September 10, 2015 at 06:59 PM
Hey Matt, my spin is rationalism. I want to know if the afterlife be looked at in a way that is removed from infectious habits of the New Age and Spiritualist movements. And using critical thinking to piece together what the existence of other planes is *really* like beyond the abstractions we constantly read about. Important questions concern exactly what we will be doing after we die. Many sources I read barely go past the "light, love and harmony for all eternity" cliche. Which I personally think is absurd. The topic is more complex than this. And that's the perspective that's needed for progress to be made.
September 11, 2015 at 08:45 AM
Are you using 'New Age an Spiritualist movements' in a pejorative way? I think that many commenters on this blog have belief systems which might be included in 'New Age' thinking. I don't consider myself a 'New Ager' by any means but some if not many of the ideas that those labeled as 'New Agers" profess, I think have merit and are congruent with many of the ideas that are discussed here. If I were forced to label myself, I suppose the closest label I would use would be 'Spiritist' or---'Spiritualist' but perhaps "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet."- AOD
Amos Oliver Doyle |
September 11, 2015 at 04:50 PM
That does indeed sound interesting, thanks!
Matt Rouge |
September 11, 2015 at 06:33 PM
“The topic is more complex than this. And that's the perspective that's needed for progress to be made.”
Agreed. I’ve just finished your book, Cyrus, and found it a very worthwhile read! You come at this subject from a scientific theoretical – bordering on Sci Fi – perspective which I found refreshing. It places a much needed emphasis on what might be termed the ‘physical’ aspects of the after-life (as against the mystical/philosophic), and how seeking to understand this more might mesh in (at least to some extent) with modern theoretical science. Interestingly, before reading this I’d just finished Robert Lanza’s ‘Biocentrism’ – a book you refer to with approval, and which has an approach that melds nicely with yours.
On initial reflection, here are some specific takeaways:
1. I agree that the term ‘after-life’ is a misnomer. Rather, for me our existence here forms just a part of a much wider reality to which it is seamlessly joined (or within which it is completely subsumed); no matter how isolated here we might feel.
2. I too have always felt unhappy about the ‘Summerland’. It comes over rather queasily as a pastiche of a particular kind of English genteel life; a stultifying, biscuit-tin parody of the English village, replete with thatched cottages, beautiful flowers & sunlit meadows, tea with the vicar; and with anything regarded as ‘not quaite naice’ banished to the sidelines. I suppose it is an image that gained the traction it did in the UK Spiritualist movement because of the grip it holds on the imagination of us Brits, even today – think of any number of modern British TV programmes, or of Mary St Mead, the home village of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple!
3. I agree that, notwithstanding the powerful evidence out there for survival (or, much less plausibly, at least some kind of ‘super-psi’), this in itself will not shift mainstream scientific opinion until it has first come to proper terms with consciousness and abandoned the current destructive eliminativism.
Finally, I was taken by your comments on how the mainstream finally accepting the reality of the survival evidence could be of serious help with grief counselling. Are you aware of the work of Piero Calvi-Parisetti who has written on this subject? If not, here is his website:
Simon Oakes |
September 12, 2015 at 05:11 AM
"Many sources I read barely go past the "light, love and harmony for all eternity" cliche. Which I personally think is absurd. The topic is more complex than this. And that's the perspective that's needed for progress to be made." - Cyrus.
Nice. I really don't like the ebook thing, but I think I'm going to have to buy yours.
My own experiences with an excellent medium and as a reluctant not so excellent medium cause me to understand a few things. 1. There is little pomp, ceremony or change upon leaving this life that we call the physical for the next life that is non-physical. In fact, for most, the non-physical even appears to be at least quasi-physical. 2. The ego remains in tact; although, perhaps expanded on the margins. 3. There is no instant enlightenment upon departure from this realm. 4. Enlightenment in the realms beyond this one is earned gradually. 5. Morality, learning, love, truth and mental flexibility in this life matter as to the conditions one experiences in the next. 6. There is evil and evil is not instantly forgiven, forgotten, evaporated or otherwise undone upon physical death.
As for summer land, I do think there is something to it. However, it is far more complex and interlaced with the above than pop spirituality would have it.
Any concept of the afterlife based on being of light NDEs is mostly bunk. The being of light is a spirit (spirit of Christ?) that sometimes assists those in crisis, but is not representative of what one actually experiences after one has actually shed the physical body.
I'm going to have to read your book.
no one |
September 12, 2015 at 11:29 PM
These positive comments motivated me to snag the book - easily done with Amazon's 1-Click feature. (Okay, I expected to buy it anyway, but Simon's review in particular got me to actually press the button.)
Michael Prescott |
September 12, 2015 at 11:56 PM
I got the book and read some parts, excellent work for a bargain price. Often I don't agree with Cyrus comments but facts and opinions are always well separated so I'm enjoying it.
September 13, 2015 at 05:36 AM
“Okay, I expected to buy it anyway, but Simon's review in particular got me to actually press the button”
Well Michael, I can only hope you get as much out of the book as I did!
On the issue, flagged up by Cyrus in his book, of the need for science to move on from a narrowly materialistic outlook, below links to a recently posted podcast of a very interesting discussion on this subject between Rupert Sheldrake and Mark Vernon:
Simon Oakes |
September 13, 2015 at 06:08 AM
I'm a bit like you 'No One'. I think the summer lands are probably necessary. I know people my mothers age have fairly fixed ideas, along with all those skeptics i.e. its all material etc. You're going to need to give them something that resembles what they are used to and understand, a kind of debriefing as it were.
If they were instead a speck of consciousness in a sea of universe, they'd probably go crazy. Or promptly head back to earth to something they know.
I remember reading about a young boy's NDE. And he said he was flipping out, thinking this, and that and so on. As children's train of thought are apt to go. He said it was like being in a hallucinatory state. A guide approached him and told him to slow his thinking as he was in a sea of perpetual experiences.
So it seems that what you think is what you get, and for a lot of people that in itself would cause problems.
I think I'll read your book too Cyrus - there's a few others on this site that should be writing as well.
What I am still trying to reason through, and I mention it on Matt's post. Is what is it that we become? And if consciousness, are we really alive, as we understand living? As I feel we create our world with our mind, and it wouldn't be here without us. Similarly I wonder, if without an overseeing consciousness, would we exist? That's how I think anyway.. Lyn x.
September 13, 2015 at 07:02 AM
No One: As for the e-book issue. Well, it's available on paperback, too. The Ebook is the discount .99 price. At least temporarily. It's returning to $3 this week, but will then be at .99 again about a week after. (I drop the price during promotions).
Thanks, Simon! Your review actually got me thinking about yet more topics I feel I need to explore. I think my two main points could be;
- the afterlife is actually a system of planes and realities that life-forms travel through.
- these planes are often quite physical in nature.
These two ideas seem to escape modern culture, for some reason. I think it's partially because we just can't comprehend that consciousness can simply "change frequency" and continue to exist in a whole new, totally real environment that is not phantasmagoric or dream-like.
September 13, 2015 at 03:14 PM
"- these planes are often quite physical in nature.
These two ideas seem to escape modern culture, for some reason. I think it's partially because we just can't comprehend that consciousness can simply "change frequency" and continue to exist in a whole new, totally real environment that is not phantasmagoric or dream-like."
I'm not arguing with you Cyrus- the internet makes every word seem more concrete :)
But I'm really not sure what the basis of the universe consists of. And I don't think the spiritual world is any different from here, but that our thinking and beliefs just place us in a material bubble .
To me consciousness forms the basis of the universe and so it doesn't matter where in it you are.
I think the problem we have in scientists discounting consciousness as just a natural out put of neurone's in the brain, this has not only prevented us from knowing how it became, but the many forms it takes and their importance.
We know already that during dreams for example, we go through levels of consciousness, Beta- wide awake and ego driven, Alpha in light sleep that heightens your imagination, visualization, memory, learning and concentration, Theta present during deep meditation and light sleep, where people sense a deep spiritual connection and unity with the universe etc.
They know that much of the pre-frontal and executive functions shut down ( perhaps why the ego is released) but the emotional centres remain -hence the emotional content of dreams. They recently determined that memories are laid down at night- information is channeled from the hippocampus to the frontal cortex. Which is why problems are solved including inventions garnered from peoples sleep.
So like other forms of consciousness, what we know of dreaming so far indicates it's as important as when we are awake.
Similarly meditation changes brain waves bringing increased visualisation, spiritual connection etc.
Are the spiritual planes physical and are we also once we leave our mammalian body? i'm not really sure. Thought to me seems to be a creating substance key to the universe, perhaps it has dream like qualities. It stumps me. Lyn x.
September 13, 2015 at 10:32 PM
And what I meant to add and may tie in with your "change of frequency" Cyrus. As in dreams and meditation when we have ' theta brain waves' these increase spiritual connectedness. Perhaps as spirits and freed of our ego we similarly have ' theta brain waves '. Sounds a bit dream like to me. Cheers Lyn.
September 13, 2015 at 10:50 PM
Cyrus, your book sounds really interesting. I have Chrome, and don't think I can download it, but will check out the paperback.
I know I go on and on about "Life in the World Unseen," but it DOES describe various planes of after-death existence, and it's not all Summerland. One of the most interesting cases was a man who was kind of a penny-pincher and a hypocrite. He only did good deeds to get recognition, but was basically uncharitable. The kind of guy who would donate to a church or hospital just to get his name on a plate, but treated others unkindly and refused to help those in need when he could. He wound up in a bare hovel. There were even worse levels. But at all times, anyone could move up if they acknowledged their faults and wrong doing. Those who were the most spiritually evolved went beyond the Summerland plane - which is a kind of happy physical existence of pretty houses, lakes, etc. - into a realm not resembling the physical world at all.
September 14, 2015 at 07:33 PM
Or we are Theta waves as spirits. Just downloaded your book Cyrus :) Lyn.
September 14, 2015 at 10:30 PM
I'm reading through the book at the moment. It's interesting thank you. You seem to have confused Sir Oliver Lodge with his son, Raymond in a couple of places though.
Would you like feedback when I have finished it? If so, through here or directly to you?
September 15, 2015 at 01:54 PM
Also there is no Oliver Crookes in this field that I can think of.
September 15, 2015 at 01:55 PM
True. There's an Oliver Lodge and there's a William Crookes.
Michael Prescott |
September 15, 2015 at 06:32 PM
"There's an Oliver Lodge and there's a William Crookes."
So if I find other mistakes like this, who's the crook I lodge my complaints with?
Sorry, Cyrus! :)
Truth is, I spent a lot of time over at your Kindle page several months ago and am inspired by your success. All those great books, liberating topics, and 5-star ratings—from the reviews I've read, it's clear you're making a lot of readers happy, and as soon as I get back to reading again, I'll no doubt join them.
Way to go, guy!
Bruce Siegel |
September 15, 2015 at 11:58 PM
Yeah, I was going to write about both scientists, but they ended up merging into one name. I'll update the Kindle version - thanks for the notice - CK
And yes feel free to leave feedback on the Amazon page... It's oddly absent of any..
September 16, 2015 at 05:30 AM
No problem. I'll read it all first. I enjoyed the section on Leslie Flint, he's a favourite of mine.
September 16, 2015 at 12:55 PM
I've mentioned it before but I really enjoyed Weiss' The Long Trajectory as an explanation for how souls aka "transphysical persons" continue to exist beyond this world.
September 16, 2015 at 02:09 PM
SPatel: I agree with you on Wiess’ approach, both in his book (The Long Trajectory) and with what he says in ‘Beyond Physicalism’. For me, he brings together A N Whitehead’s process philosophy, and the mystical insights of Aurobindo, in a way that paints a credible and profound picture of what the afterlife might be like – and of equal importance (e.g. given Lynn’s comments earlier concerning the question ‘what it is we become’) of why it might be like that.
Also for me, it’s a picture that doesn’t cut across the science based speculations of the kind discussed on this post. This is because one of the brilliant features of process philosophy is its compatibility with, and embrace of, modern science (including both modern physics & evolution). Indeed, it arguably fits better with modern science than philosophical materialism! It can thus embrace speculations of the kind Cyrus makes in his book (and, as you pointed out on the previous post, Whitehead’s relational (rather than absolutist) view of space/time fits well with Leibniz).
If we do disagree, it might be concerning your earlier comments about Cyrus avoiding the ‘religious delusion’. I am no defender per se of mainstream religions. But for me, the above adds up to some kind of theism; especially so when you take full account of the extent to which Aurobindo’s metaphysical thinking underpins Weiss’ approach. I’d be interested in your thoughts on that.
Simon Oakes |
September 18, 2015 at 06:56 AM
Subject change, if I may. Will get Cyrus's book though! Do NDEs from the past tend to have more "religious" elements? An argument I hear against their validity is that, because people are becoming more pluralistic, less religious culturally, and more accepting of science and rationality, modern NDEs, in an attempt to strengthen their validity, will not have particular religious elements. It was my assumption that all NDEs had very common elements and many are void of any religious element, even for the deeply devout who have experienced them. And this was true even centuries ago. Can anyone shed some light on this area?
September 18, 2015 at 11:11 AM
In October 2015, there will be a new skeptical book released on the afterlife. It is entitled "Spooky Science: Debunking the Pseudoscience of the Afterlife" by John Grant, and published by a respectable publisher.
I am not sure how much "mainstream" recognition this book will get but it seems to come to the opposite conclusion to Cyrus Kirkpatrick and yourself on most of these subjects. The book concludes that mediums like Palladino, Dunglas Home, Leonora Piper etc were fraudulent and famous reincarnation cases can be explained by cryptomnesia or other psychological processes etc. He also has a chapter on debunking poltergeist cases or alleged "channelled" entities like Patience Worth. There seems to be less about NDE's but I see Raymond Moody cited in the Bibliogaphy. The book is about 200-pages long. I had a brief look on amazon. How about you review the book in October after it is released? I think it is important to review skeptical works and not just cite proponent literature all the time which I keep saying over and over on various paranormal blogs.
Perhaps you or your regulars here can create a little list of any mistakes you can find in the book. I am going to review the book on amazon when it is published. Regards.
September 19, 2015 at 09:21 AM
Thanks for the heads-up, Bill. The reason I don't review Skeptical books very much anymore is that we've covered most of those arguments already. There's been a lot of discussion on here about Palladino and Piper, and even some discussion of D. D. Home. The search box on the left-hand side of the screen allows you to search the blog archives (1,507 posts and nearly 42,000 comments so far).
It gets boring to go over the same discredited objections again and again. Not that all skeptical objections are mistaken, of course - but anyone arguing that Piper (in particular) was consciously fraudulent is simply not knowledgeable about the case. Even skeptics who examined her at the time concluded that her trance state was genuine, though they believed that the messages came from her subconscious. They had to accept that her trance was real because they abused her cruelly while under trance, stabbing her with needles, burning her skin, and applying painful pressure to her hand that caused actual nerve damage - all without eliciting any reaction. She was understandably upset when, upon waking, she found herself injured and was unable to use her hand for several days!
Michael Prescott |
September 19, 2015 at 01:54 PM
Thanks for your response Michael, I will check your archives.
On subject of this post. I have had a small read of Cyrus Kirkpatrick's book regarding the preview on amazon. Here is a fundamental error.
He says regarding the famous "Miss Z" OBE study that:
"Tart concluded that there was a
remote chance of Miss Z cheating if she were to somehow use an apparatus
of hidden mirrors that she snuck into the laboratory, but Tart believed it was
very unlikely given the protocols, and he concluded a parapsychological
explanation was the best fit."
This is wrong. In the paper Tart admits in his own words "Therefore, Miss Z's reading of the target number cannot be considered as providing conclusive evidence for a parapsychological effect."
Here is the full quote:
"The second alternative is that she might
have seen the number reflected in the surface of the case of the clock which was
mounted on the wall above it. This was the only reflecting surface in the room
placed in such a way that this might have been possible. Both Dr. Hastings and
I spent some time in the dimly lit room to dark-adapt our eyes, and tried to
read a number from the subject's position on the bed, as reflected on the
surface of the clock. As the room was dimly lit and the surface of the clock was
black plastic, we could not see anything of the number. However, when we
shone a flashlight directly on the number (increasing its brightness by a factor
somewhere between several hundred and several thousand) we could just make
out what the number was in the much brighter reflection. Thus, although it
seems unlikely, one could argue that the number constituted a "subliminal"
stimulus in its reflection off the clock surface. Therefore, Miss Z's reading of the
target number cannot be considered as providing conclusive evidence for a
So basically there was an entirely naturalistic explanation. Light could have been reflected from the surface of a clock located on the wall above the shelf, and Miss Z could have seen the number this way.
Cyrus Kirkpatrick deliberately "filters" this out of his book (something funny enough he accuses skeptics of doing earlier in his book) ignoring evidence they don't want to acknowledge; instead he only mentions the first alternative of mirrors which Tart does disregard. He does not mention the other simplistic natural explanation.
The statement "a parapsychological
explanation was the best fit" is therefore deliberately misleading because Tart admitted no conclusive evidence could be given for a parapsychological effect.
Cyrus Kirkpatrick also seems to indicate the protocols of the experiment were good. They were not very good. Tart admits he fell asleep during the experiment (!), there were no video cameras and the subject had not been searched prior to the experiment (that is just a few issues, we could go on).
I don't buy into the silly mirror idea anyway, what most likely happened was the number was reflected by the glass face of the wall clock above the shelf. This gets me thinking. Should we ignore an entirely simple explanation for an unlikely paranormal one?
Cyrus Kirkpatrick in the beginning of his book admits he doesn't have time to examine all the skeptic rebuttals. Thing is with this study, skeptics are not even involved (they came later). Tart himself first admitted no conclusive evidence for a parapsychological effect.
It is basically a poorly controlled experiment with a dozing observer that has not been replicated in nearly 50 years. Yet this is considered to be genuine evidence for a paranormal OBE or life after death?
In my opinion this is not a good book and I don't recommend it. His section on the OBE contains basically only the above discredited experiment.
I would like to see if John Grant's book makes any similar sort of sloppy errors. No offense to Kirkpatrick, I think open criticism of one's work is a good thing. I would like to see his response or anyone else on this. We can only move forward by correcting out errors, proponent or skeptic is irrelevant.
September 20, 2015 at 03:16 PM
Tart writes in his book "The End of Materialism" that he didn't think the clock explanation was at all likely, and that his statement about the experiment not proving psi was pro forma, since in principle a single unreplicated experiment can't prove much. But he does think psi is the best explanation (see his book), so Cyrus is right about that.
Michael Prescott |
September 20, 2015 at 07:21 PM
"..what most likely happened was the number was reflected by the glass face of the wall clock above the shelf. This gets me thinking. Should we ignore an entirely simple explanation for an unlikely paranormal one? "
Yeah, sure, Bill. You know, by the same reasoning, the best explanation for the Apollo lunar landings is that they were faked; done in a studio. They haven't been replicated in decades either.
I mean they could have been faked in a studio. Can you rule that out 100%?
The problem that skeptics will always come up against is that people have these experiences; maybe not repeatedly, in laboratories, under absolutely flawlessly controlled conditions, but convincingly enough to themselves and others who have been there with them.
Take me, for example. I've had OBEs and they provided me with ample evidence that I was viewing reality from a location (and in some cases, a time) distant, and not possibly knowable, via my physical senses. I could be stupid and/or delusional, but then you have to consider that I get paid multiples of the median US wage to lead a team that statically analyzes insurance data, the results of which are used by a fortune 500 company to make business decisions. Or I could be lying, though it would be challenging, I think, to arrive at my motive for investing so much time and energy in the subject of my lies. This goes for a number of people here.
I've also sat with a medium that gave highly detailed idiosyncratic personal information known to only myself and the deceased, under a disguised identity, without fishing, hesitation or stumbles on the medium's part. Again, so have others here; some with the same medium. So that was repeated.
In addition to personal experiences that defy what the skeptics try to undermine, there is the fact that we often know the literature better than the skeptics and their characterizations of it are often twisted and skewed.
no one |
September 20, 2015 at 08:16 PM
"Yeah, sure, Bill. You know, by the same reasoning, the best explanation for the Apollo lunar landings is that they were faked; done in a studio. They haven't been replicated in decades either.
I mean they could have been faked in a studio. Can you rule that out 100%?"
You misunderstand what science is all about but I am not going to educate you on this. I will keep it simple. I am going by Occam's razor.
There is a simple naturalistic explanation for the "Miss Z" parapsychological experiment. So we do not resort to a magical explanation that doesn't have a shred of evidence to support it. Even Charles Tart admitted the experiment was not conclusive evidence for a parapsychological effect in his original paper.
As for the Apollo Moon landings it is silly to suggest they might have been 'faked' in a studio. We have fairly recent photographic evidence from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter that revealed the lander modules and the tracks the original astronauts had used on the moon. There is no conspiracy here. This is universally accepted by astronomers.
There is a lot of other third-party evidence for the landings, such as retroreflectors. Also look into the Lunar Laser Ranging experiments which have confirmed beyond doubt the Apollo Moon landings occurred. This is third-party evidence and replicated. Comparing a discredited parapsychological experiment to the Apollo program is a tad irrational.
As for your other part of your post - Anecdotal evidence, especially claims of personal experience are not objective evidence for anything. I could come on here and say I just communicated with fairies at the bottom of my garden or communicated with the fraudulent medium Henry Slade, it does not make my claim true. We cannot prove a negative. These sorts of claims are utterly useless.
If you want to cite me evidence for 'paranormal' effects it would have to be objective, that is the way science works. There would be nothing new you could show me because I have been reading the parapsychology pro/con literature since 1998. But I am not interested in starting a huge debate on this issue. I was just giving a head up on the new skeptic book on the afterlife.
John Grant is a former paranormal believer turned skeptic and I would like to see this book reviewed at some point. I will probably do it myself on Amazon and compare it to Cyrus Kirkpatrick's book. Regards.
September 21, 2015 at 05:25 PM
Bill, I wouldn't call Tart's experiment with Miss Z "discredited," but I agree that it is inconclusive. It would be unrealistic to expect any one experiment to conclusively prove such a controversial claim. Tart's statement to that effect is just common sense, not some kind of startling admission, concession, or confession, as it's sometimes characterized.
I think "no one's" moon landing example was meant as hyperbole, not a serious case of scientific doubt. Perhaps the underlying point is that it is in principle possible to doubt anything, and since there are no absolutely clear-cut standards for the rules of induction, reasonable people can disagree about how much evidence is enough to dispel doubt.
It's true that anecdotal experiences (if they are not investigated) aren't objective evidence for other people, but they can be powerful evidence for the people who actually experience them. People who've had NDEs have been permanently changed, even if there is no way to prove what happened to them.
I've found it's necessary to approach this whole subject with a certain tolerance for ambiguity. Simple answers, whether pro or con, tend to be incomplete and misleading.
Michael Prescott |
September 22, 2015 at 02:19 AM
"I think "no one's" moon landing example was meant as hyperbole, not a serious case of scientific doubt. "
Yes. I believe the moon landings really happened even though I have never personally seen a retroflector and, it seems to me, that photos of tracks on the moon could be very easily photoshopped. At some point everything comes down to faith because, indeed, there is always some alternative explanation that *could* be true at some level of P.
I personally know beyond a reasonable doubt - actually beyond any doubt - that mind does not equal brain; that consciousness is non-local and not dependent on the physical body.
If someone wants to have faith in science and a materialist paradigm, that's their business. I think they are wrong, but I also know that their thinking won't change until they are ready to change - perhaps not until they have passed over. So it doesn't bother me at all. Whatsmore, I can understand and appreciate why they would adopt faith in scientific materialism. After all, it serves the physical needs pretty darn well and has delivered achievements that can be pretty dazzling and ego boosting for mankind. What do I care if they feel secure in the notion that humans are nothing more than biological robots in a meaningless universe.
That said, it does kind of irritate if I'm having a bad day already or something, when scientific materialists come around misrepresenting evidence for the so called paranormal and characterizing those who believe in it as idiot superstitious primitives.
no one |
September 22, 2015 at 06:14 AM
Bill, "If you want to cite me evidence for 'paranormal' effects it would have to be objective, that is the way science works. There would be nothing new you could show me because I have been reading the parapsychology pro/con literature since 1998"
Have you read, for example, the experiments done by Julie Beischel, with mediums, at the University of Arizona? Repeatable and highly significant results.
For you to come here and say that You've been reading about this stuff for years and it's all bunk/no science just shows that you really don't know what you are talking about.
Then to talk about fairies and fake mediums (what, no scientists has ever faked his research or promoted the equivalent of a fairy?) is pretty condescending and insulting.
no one |
September 22, 2015 at 06:26 AM
I think that anecdotal reports of phenomena suggesting non--physicality do provide a kind of evidence of a sort especially when those anecdotal reports number in the thousands and when there is a core similarity in many if not most of them. Those reports become increasing evidential when they come from different experiences e.g., OBEs, NDEs, reincarnation reports, reports from mediums, automatic writing etc.
It is true that any 'evidence' they might provide is not the kind that can be weighed or measured as is possible in the physical world but nevertheless I think that the abundance and similarity of the reports eventually does rise to the level of 'evidence' for a non-physical reality. I would have trouble providing evidence of a rainbow to a blind person but even though I could not provide evidence that wouldn't mean that the rainbow didn't exist.
If a thousand people reported that they saw fairies at the bottom of your garden then I think I would have to take them seriously and investigate their claims. -AOD
P.S I have been reading parapsychology literature since 1958. What is your point? - AOD
Amos Oliver Doyle |
September 22, 2015 at 08:42 AM
Bill, I think Cyrus's book is more a discussion about the anomalous experiences people have. Rather than proving scientific causality.
Since the face of the clock was dark, Tart himself suggested that refection was unlikely.
The problem for me is the sarcastic and derogatory stance taken by sceptics, scientists, on down to the general public who see unusual experiences such as NDE'S and other forms of consciousness such as psychic, remote viewing, PSI, etc, as magical, mystical, or woo woo thinking.
Here's some examples of anomalous experiences..
Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer was teaching in the Psychology Department at the University of California at Berkley and the University Medical Centre in San Francisco. When her daughters harp went missing in 1991, a friend suggested contacting a local dousing club. A number of experienced dousers apparently are not only good at finding water and oil, but quite psychic as well. He not only told her that the harp was in the next suburb, but the street name and number as well.
Lizzy is the author of the book Extraordinary Knowing and in this video she sums up how many people feel after unusual experiences that cannot be explained by science. That she came to understand her materialistic thinking to explain all phenomena, was clearly wrong.
What Lizzy also found was that many of her colleagues quietly told her of their experiences of which they didn't want publicly known for fear of derision.
She also reveals how a world class neurosurgeon who approached her for help with his continual headaches. When she questioned him about why he didn't teach, he says he would love to, but he can't. She queries him and slowly he admits why. His patients never die because he say he sits half an hour, sometimes hours till he sees a light above their head. If they have a light, then he knows they will live if he operates. And he said, " how can I reveal that, what will my residents think"? And so the headaches began the day he gave up teaching.
Like Lizzy I have had many anomalous experiences, as have thousands and thousands of others, including those on this blog.
Subjective accounts however are derided and negated completely, as is any research and researcher into the subject. I like many here feel derision is uncalled for as not only do people feel they can't admit to these experiences or support them, this rigidity in thinking permeates society. All the way to the science department which backs materialism while totally ignoring consciousness, it's reason for being, and all its forms. Cheers.
September 22, 2015 at 09:30 AM
Grant's upcoming book seems like nothing more than materialist propaganda.
OTOH, I'd also agree Tart's experiment isn't very convincing.
September 22, 2015 at 12:04 PM
"There would be nothing new you could show me because I have been reading the parapsychology pro/con literature since 1998."
Translation: 'I know it all and don't want to consider anything you might say.' Spoken like a true 'pseudo-skeptic', Bill. Keep on believing as fact all of those opinions you have read! - AOD
Amos Oliver Doyle |
September 22, 2015 at 02:18 PM
"Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer . . . is the author of the book Extraordinary Knowing"
I love this book!
Bruce Siegel |
September 22, 2015 at 03:13 PM
One thing that seems to happen with science, something most likely gets accepted by mainstream 'big' science only when there is an acceptable explanation for it. Germs. Washing hands and cleaning things became a generally accepted procedure only after you could show the damn things in a microscope, before that people did figure out that cleanliness was a good idea when treating wounds etc more than a few times, but the idea also kept regularly getting lost because there was no concrete everybody could see it explanation as to why. Moving continents - the proof is obvious, in hindsight, but what was needed was more knowledge of why and how it could happen before the theory got accepted. Meteorites, and what meteors are. Rocks falling from the sky... people kept seeing that happen, but only occasionally, and how could rocks fall from the sky anyway?
I suppose the same goes with psi, life after death and all other 'supernatural' phenomena. If and when some evidence, or a hypothesis that can be studied well enough to lead to an actual theory of HOW they are possible will be found they will always be dismissed, no matter how much evidence that things happen there is.
BTW, Cyrus's book includes a bit about telepathy I have sometimes speculated about. That autistic individuals might be a good study subject. Developing into a mentally fully functional human might be hard if you kept getting input from other sources besides your own senses.
September 22, 2015 at 06:00 PM
I didn't get too far in before I realized that the author has a very incomplete understanding of some of the philosophies he dismisses out of hand. Unfortunate. Not knowing everything about unknowable topics is OK; not knowing the things that are out there and easy to know is a different problem.
Michael D |
October 05, 2015 at 08:27 AM
Late to this thread. I want to single out Cyrus's book as being one of the most accessible and clear books about psi that I have read. If an open-minded psi skeptic wanted a pro-psi book recommendation, Cyrus's book would be on my very short list of candidates. (No, I don't work for Cyrus :)
James Oeming |
October 24, 2015 at 12:51 PM
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