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I was unaware until recently that Stephen Braude has been interviewed by The Forever Family Foundation. This may or may not have been at my suggestion. All I know is that when I sent them the suggestion--last year--they said they'd had no contact with Braude.

Anyhow, I missed it, and the archive isn't up yet (may take a while). Did anyone catch it or record it?

Oh, and MP - I've been wanting to get round to listening to the Chris Carter interview, too. My favourite Skeptiko interviews so far have been Alan Wallace, Raymond Moody, and Rupert Sheldrake.

I'm puzzled about whether skeptics can be convinced or if they just have to die off. There has been ample evidence for two or three generations now. What will make people take it seriously today when the didn't take the work of Richet Crookes et al seriously back then?

It's time for researchers to stop trying to prove it's real. That's been done over and over. It's time for them to start trying to figure out how it works. When they do that they can develop technology based on the new scientific principles learned and working machines will be the most convincing evidence attainable.

I also think it is a mistake to lump all skeptics in the same basket. Some will never change their minds because, for example, their career is based on being a debunker, or their presteige as a scientist will be diminished by an admission that they were wrong. Other skeptics are just ignorant of the evidence and they can be convinced.

How do you define the skeptical community? As the loudmouths in the media or as all the individual victims of skeptical misdirection perpertrated by the loudmouths in the media. The victims may be converted but I doubt the media skeptics will be.

I should say that the media skeptics are unlikely to admit they are wrong. What they really believe is known only to them.

Also some people who are confronted with proof a medium is a fraud will continue to believe in the medium and ask them bring through their favorite spirits. The same can occur with believers in materialism when confronted with proof of paranormal phenomena. Some people are just natural believers some of them believe in fake mediums regardless of the evidence, some believe in materialism regardless of the evidence.

have you all read about the recent exchanges between Alex of Skeptiko and James Randi?

Alex interviewed Randi back in Sep of '07 where Randi clearly stated that he always had an independent panel of scientists to test the claims of paranormal for the million-dollar-challenge......at that point, alex said that he wanted to set up an independent experiment to repeat the dog that knows experiment..

anyway, alex found an animal behaviorist from University of Florida, who is willing to run the test, and Alex asked Randi to participate in the experiment- now not only Randi shot Alex down, but he went back to his old routines of bullying and making confusing statements.....just read the email exchanges on Skeptiko's blog.

wow, during the interview, he sounded so reasonable and no nonsense. after reading those emails, i think this is the first time i'm thoroughly convinced that people like randi and others are fundamentalists who are hypocritical and belligerent.

kudo to alex for making a sincere effort on putting this experiment together. I been following up on his endeavor and i really thought that this may be a beginning of something- a true scientific joint study between researchers and skeptics.

oh well. i will no longer give any credence to randi and his so called challenges.

I'm puzzled about whether skeptics can be convinced or if they just have to die off.

The conflict will continue until both sides understand the difference between using the intellect and identifying with the intellect.

Plotinus once wrote, “(Truth) is not to be investigated as a thing external to us, and so only imperfectly known. It is within us. Here the objects we contemplate and that which contemplates are identical – both are thought.”

Those who actually look within may discover what he means by that, and will know they have when they experience the deep, warm feelings of genuine humility and compassion. Those who assume that Plotinus is proposing a theory to be evaluated and analyzed intellectually will always wonder why people are polarized.

Both Chris and Alex make good points in this exchange, and I agree with Alex that the professional skeptics genuinely believe they have evaluated the evidence. I also agree with Chris that the issue has to do with underlying beliefs and preconceptions. I’d have to add though, that neither Chris nor Alex appears to understand Plotinus.

On the topic of the professional skeptics, Sir Richard just released a self-congratulatory roundtable discussion between The Four Horseman: Dawkins, Hitchens, Dennett, and Harris. I found it interesting from the standpoint of observing how certain minds operate. Of the three, Harris appears to be the only one willing to be skeptical of his skepticism. Here’s the http://richarddawkins.net/fourhorsementranscript>transcript.

The evidence for paranormal phenomena is just one part of the larger consciousness question anyway, and those questions are evolving. The David Brooks column that I linked in the previous post makes this point when he writes, “Over the past several years, the momentum has shifted away from hard-core materialism.”

Progress may appear slow, but it is happening.

If you are interested, you can listen to the Forever Family Foundation's interview with Stephen Braude at the Contact Talk Radio website. www.contacttalkradio.com/hosts/forever.htm click on the 3-27-2008 button.

The transcript says it is part two of the interview, but I couldn't find part one. Anyone have a link to it? Thanks

I couldn't locate the transcript either, Tony M, (maybe there isn't one), but the podcast of Part One is here:

http://www.skeptiko.com/index.php?id=50

I couldn't locate the transcript either, Tony M, (maybe there isn't one), but the podcast of Part One is here:

http://www.skeptiko.com/index.php?id=50

Oops - double post! First one didn't take! Adventures with Typepad! :-)

Thanks Michael H!

@ Leslie,

Thank you so much. I have managed to listen to the show. Your link saved me a lot of frustration - in terms of waiting for the shows to be uploaded to the main website. Thanks again.

"If you are interested, you can listen to the Forever Family Foundation's interview with Stephen Braude at the Contact Talk Radio website."

I wonder how Braude received a message from John Wayne at his seance in the 60s when Wayne didn't die until 1979.

Slightly off topic here - all links to www.survivalafterdeath.org has been dead for some time (a couple of weeks?) now. Who made that site? Is it gone for good?

Soo much good info unavailable.. I wish I had read more while I had the chance.

I heard the interview, agreeing with MP's verdict. At one juncture Alex & Chris were talking past one another: Alex insisting the skeptics have viewed the evidence while Chris was noting that the view was being made from a prejudicial perspective, namely that skeptics automatically assume that psi MUST be impossible. They assume matter preceeded mind. However, if we begin with the assumption that mind is primary, then we can explain the ability of mind to interact with physical reality, because the physical IS mental. As to convictions, forcing water down the throats of horses is a Sisyphean task. Since the skeptics opinions are stone-set and fossilised, they can be buried with them. Ostriches don't actually bury their heads in the sand, but some people do.

@ Roger

I think the gents who ran it had been losing heart for a while. It ceased to be a news source a good while ago. I think one of the chaps is called Thomas Jones.

It would be a shame if it was gone forever. It was a great resource.

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