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What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

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What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby caniswalensis » 04 Jun 2010, 02:29

I have been thinking lately about the different ways in which people view the paranormal & supernatural. Even more than that, about how people have differing views on just about anything you could name. Things like alternative medicines, energy drinks, reality telivision, history, conspiracy theories, how a certain job should be done, anything really.

I have come to hold the opinion that everyone is part skeptic and part believer, with only the ratio between the parts differing.

So I thought that I would pose these two questions:

What is one thing that you do not believe in?

and:

What is one thing that you believe, even though you might not have objective proof that it is true?

The answers can be paranormal subjects, or just any old thing, like an urban legend you once heard. Just do not say that you are skeptical of skepticism. That's not only a non sequitur, it's like wishing for more wishes. :lol:

Feel free to give reasons behind your answers if you wish. That's a plus, as a matter of fact. The only thing I ask is that you do not try to debate other people's beliefs in this thread. That is not what this is about. It's more about self examination than what others are saying. At any rate, I hope this is something we can all have a little fun with.

I will start:

I am skeptical of homeopathic medicine. I feel that way because there are no scientific sudies that show the effectiveness of it. The compounds are so diluted that there is not a single molocule of the active ingredient left. You have only water, and no one can explain how water could cure you. I could go on, but you get the idea.

I believe that those "5-hour" energy shots help me when I participate in western martial arts competitions. I have made a subjective judgement that I 'feel" better during and after the fighting if I drink one 30 minutes before I start. I seem to have an easier time staying focused mentally, and I am not as tired afterwards. I don't know how they work, but I am pretty sure that they do. I have made drinking these energy shots part of my pre-fight "ritual."

Regards, Canis
"It is proper for you to doubt ... do not go upon report ... do not go upon tradition ... do not go upon hear-say." ~ Buddha
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby ciscop » 04 Jun 2010, 03:24

one time
before a test on economics in university
i really needed to do good
so i stayed up all night drinking red bull and studying.. im talking about over 10 cans of redbull
it was one of the worst experiences ever
during the test i felt all agitated and felt like my core body hurted.. like a lot.. then i started panicking.. and all that during a freaking test!!
that was the last time i drank any of those kinds of drinks


and i am pretty much skeptical about everything we talk here
but i do wanna believe there is a god (i am an atheist), i wanna believe there´s aliens (i dont believe in ufo), i wanna believe we have mind powers like PK and telepathy (right now is all bunk and quackery and dumbness) and i wanna believe that the meat inside the 10cts taco i eat on the street is cow meat. (it is actually dog or horse).
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby ProfWag » 04 Jun 2010, 04:33

I am pretty much skeptical of everything except on Fridays when my wife tells me that it's just milk and cookies she is giving the mailman. That, I am not skeptical of in the least... ;-)
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby ciscop » 04 Jun 2010, 10:06

ProfWag wrote:I am pretty much skeptical of everything except on Fridays when my wife tells me that it's just milk and cookies she is giving the mailman. That, I am not skeptical of in the least... ;-)

kind of fell flat
not your best work so far
i expect you to be funnier
you are the smart one here
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 04 Jun 2010, 19:56

I like to take my skeptical out for a spin piece by piece. In other words, I prefer to listen to all the available facts of a specific situation before I form an opinion about something. Then if possible, I like to give something my best shot up close and personal. Here's a few examples:

Astrology - A definite 'maybe'. I take that topic with a grain of salt because I suck at understanding it to any real level of comprehension.
ESP - Yup, I think it exists in some form or another but not in the way that TV showmen or Hollywood likes to portray it.
Ghosts - Yup, I think that ghosts exist but once again not in the way that TV or Hollywood portrays it.
UFO's - Yes, by definition 'unidentified flying objects' most certainly exist. IMO most of the good ones are classified Military test flights or some such explanation. Some life form from another planet? I think it's possible. Little green men with anal probes? No thank you.

Now before all of you skeptics start laughing your arses off as you usually do, allow me to elaborate on why I think the way I think. Let's take ESP as an example but toss out everything that is believed by many or sold to the world by the Silvia Browns. Take something that is proven by science, that being a birds ability to migrate thousands of miles by pure instinct or a newly hatched sea turtle that automatically knows to head into the water rather than go inland. Many species come into the world without any contact of what we humans call 'parents'. They rely on survival of the fittest that starts with the breeding process of two adult creatures. The female chooses instinctivly the most attractive and physically fit male in her proximity. The female then does her thing and in many species, from the first breath is taken as a solo creature with no patterning or teaching. That creature must survive on cold, hard instinct. Humans.... no dice. Many mammels...also no dice but reptiles and amphibians do pretty good for themselves as do the lower classes of the good old food chain right down to bacteria. Is it impossible to think that humans have some amount of instict that has been replaced or rewritten in the evolution of our DNA that may account for why some people have what we might deem a 'talent'? Even if that so called talent is the ability to cold read another person really, really well? A direct or correct 'hit' is a direct or correct hit, no matter how you slice it or what you want to call it. The reason for that correct hit is yet to be determined by what we call science. Meanwhile civilization has been duped into believing by many to think that this is some sort of special power or some God given thing by humans that may very well possess a heightened sense of awareness as well as the ability to BS others beyond normal human comprehension.
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby ProfWag » 04 Jun 2010, 20:56

NinjaPuppy wrote:I like to take my skeptical out for a spin piece by piece. In other words, I prefer to listen to all the available facts of a specific situation before I form an opinion about something. Then if possible, I like to give something my best shot up close and personal. Here's a few examples:

Astrology - A definite 'maybe'. I take that topic with a grain of salt because I suck at understanding it to any real level of comprehension.
ESP - Yup, I think it exists in some form or another but not in the way that TV showmen or Hollywood likes to portray it.
Ghosts - Yup, I think that ghosts exist but once again not in the way that TV or Hollywood portrays it.
UFO's - Yes, by definition 'unidentified flying objects' most certainly exist. IMO most of the good ones are classified Military test flights or some such explanation. Some life form from another planet? I think it's possible. Little green men with anal probes? No thank you.

Now before all of you skeptics start laughing your arses off as you usually do, allow me to elaborate on why I think the way I think. Let's take ESP as an example but toss out everything that is believed by many or sold to the world by the Silvia Browns. Take something that is proven by science, that being a birds ability to migrate thousands of miles by pure instinct or a newly hatched sea turtle that automatically knows to head into the water rather than go inland. Many species come into the world without any contact of what we humans call 'parents'. They rely on survival of the fittest that starts with the breeding process of two adult creatures. The female chooses instinctivly the most attractive and physically fit male in her proximity. The female then does her thing and in many species, from the first breath is taken as a solo creature with no patterning or teaching. That creature must survive on cold, hard instinct. Humans.... no dice. Many mammels...also no dice but reptiles and amphibians do pretty good for themselves as do the lower classes of the good old food chain right down to bacteria. Is it impossible to think that humans have some amount of instict that has been replaced or rewritten in the evolution of our DNA that may account for why some people have what we might deem a 'talent'? Even if that so called talent is the ability to cold read another person really, really well? A direct or correct 'hit' is a direct or correct hit, no matter how you slice it or what you want to call it. The reason for that correct hit is yet to be determined by what we call science. Meanwhile civilization has been duped into believing by many to think that this is some sort of special power or some God given thing by humans that may very well possess a heightened sense of awareness as well as the ability to BS others beyond normal human comprehension.

I'd like to think that I don't usually laugh my ass off at people who believe in the paranormal. After all I'd be laughing at about 75% of the population. If someone sees a ghost,, I can see someone believing in that. Same with UFOs, bigfoot, or a psychic experience. From my view, I just think that there is usually a rational explanation for everything and I like to remind people of that before they go spreading stories that the UFO they saw came from another planet through another dimension via time-travel, that's all. If one critically looks at something and they continue to believe, then more power to them!
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 04 Jun 2010, 21:41

ProfWag wrote:I'd like to think that I don't usually laugh my ass off at people who believe in the paranormal. After all I'd be laughing at about 75% of the population. If someone sees a ghost,, I can see someone believing in that. Same with UFOs, bigfoot, or a psychic experience. From my view, I just think that there is usually a rational explanation for everything and I like to remind people of that before they go spreading stories that the UFO they saw came from another planet through another dimension via time-travel, that's all. If one critically looks at something and they continue to believe, then more power to them!

And I like to think that you are not a typical skeptic. ;)
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby Craig Browning » 04 Jun 2010, 23:07

so i stayed up all night drinking red bull and studying.. im talking about over 10 cans of redbull it was one of the worst experiences ever


This explains so many things about you and how you have come to be the person you are today (hehehe)

What is one thing that you do not believe in?

Formal & Organized Religion of ALL types. Though they may have served a limited purpose in past times when it comes to the evolution of human society, they have actually done far more harm than good when one steps back and views the truth of their history.

Understand, I am not negating the philosophic tenets associated with such cults; if a person wishes to base their life on the teachings of Jesus then do so, but not within a huge building/institution and not by imposing by law, militia, or even social gathering such beliefs onto others. When FREE WILL is robbed of the people by any belief system the act itself negates the value or any semblance of “truth” it might claim.

And Contrary to the Belief of Some… I do not believe in Fairies (other than what you might find in San Francisco in the Castro district), Leprechauns, and Unicorns.


What is one thing that you believe, even though you might not have objective proof that it is true?

“Something” – that is to say that I believe “something” exists that is akin to this thing people refer to as “God” or “Divinity”. It is something that goes a bit beyond the idea of “Higher Self” but at the same time IT does not insist upon our kissing its glowing hinny or obeying any kind of dogmatic ideology. For lack of a better term it’s akin to being “Management” and maybe the Architect that helped orchestrate things; creating order from chaos AFTER the big bang.

I don’t know what IT is and wouldn’t risk an attempt at defining IT. I would however suggest that IT has a primary tool that is used to aid in some of the more menial management tasking known as KARMA. When you stop to think about it such a tool makes sense in that it is a kind of software that simply works off a plug & play method; what you sew you will reap… what goes around, comes around… the law of three-fold return, etc. It is a universal belief even within those groups that claim to not believe or support the concept in that most all of society believes that we get out of life what we put into it. But then there’s that “Iffy” side to Karma… Reincarnation.

Because of things I’ve encountered over the years I’m inclined to believe in this recycling process and would go so far as to say that it is one of the reasons why we have special individuals showing up from era to era that give us uncanny breakthroughs in science as well as life and living. Such entities are expressions of an evolved “soul” and many of these same “prodigies” unabashedly claim belief in past lives, even to the point of telling you, what, where and when they lived and giving remarkable evidence to said point. Gen. George Patton is one of the more noted personalities that comes to mind, who was not part of some kind of “eastern” influence.
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby ciscop » 07 Jun 2010, 07:32

the person that i am??
well i am glad to be the person that i am
i just performed for 500people in a major square in my hometown
what you did today craig?

go and finish to clean up the dishes craig
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby Craig Browning » 07 Jun 2010, 21:41

ciscop wrote:the person that i am??
well i am glad to be the person that i am
i just performed for 500people in a major square in my hometown
what you did today craig?

go and finish to clean up the dishes craig


Is that all?

When you get standing ovations in rooms seating 2-5 thousand, let me know... I have more than a few times over the years. 500 people were some of the smaller gigs I used to play, my typical audience for years was between 1,200 and 1,800. If you include stadium shows at State Fairs and similar exhibitions we get into the tens of thousands. So keep it up, you might get there some day. ;)

I can't help but wonder what kind of money you made for that "gig"... or was it as it sounds, a pass the hat busking bit?

BTW... I have some Seance Dinners coming up, if you'd like to attend let me know... people are paying $150.00 a seat to be a part of it but I'll give you a deal ;)

:roll: GROW THE F' UP :roll:
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 07 Jun 2010, 22:03

Craig - Please avoid the "F" word.

Ciscop - You are treading on my last nerve. This is your final warning. One more nasty or personal comment to anyone or about anything will be your last. At least on this forum.
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby ciscop » 07 Jun 2010, 23:51

NinjaPuppy wrote:Craig - Please avoid the "F" word.

Ciscop - You are treading on my last nerve. This is your final warning. One more nasty or personal comment to anyone or about anything will be your last. At least on this forum.


so he gets to use the f word
and i get a final warning for saying nothing? what did i say that was offensive? Nothing!
i didnt say anything

and craig, if you read the other thread were i posted the david martin doing your illusion
i said to the owner of the magic store that i have no balls to do busking, i need to be hired to perform

by the way here is the video

it always gives me a giggle but more than all.. a lot of cringe moments

hahahahaha
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby caniswalensis » 07 Jun 2010, 23:58

Thank you for stepping in, NinjaPuppy.

I confess that I am surprised that my thread degenerated into those types of hateful posts. Maybe that is naive of me.

I really tried to lay this out as a fun thing that people could do without the arguing about it. I was also hoping people might find a little common ground by realizing that perhaps each of os has some skeptical views and some unproven beliefs, however small. That was probably a little naive too.

There is obviously a lot of animosity in this forum, but I hate to see people take the low road like this.

This is a forum that at least in part exists to discuss critical thought. I am constantly seeing examples of all sorts of ad hominum attacks in threads. I am never more appalled then when it comes from my own side. if people just enjoy flaming each other, there are better forums for doing that in.

Now, excuse me for saying so, but when hen I read some of the SKECOP articles, I see a lot of subjective negativity and emotional attacks directed at the skeptical community. I may be wrong, but that is how it seems to me, and I joined in large part to discuss those issues. I suspect that the tone of the website has a lot to do with the advesarial tone of this forum.

That is really no excuse for anyone though. Believers and skeptics alike should be discussing the issues, not making personal attacks. And when such attacks are made, they should be met with disdain form all sides, no matter who the target is. This should be a forum of ideas, not bully tactics and cliques.

I will make a pledge right now, and I invite all members here to chime in and take it with me.

I pledge:
…to sign on to this forum for the purpose of discussing my thoughts & opinions in a civil manner.
…to never use profanity .
…to never indulge in name calling.
…to never indulge in personal attacks.
…to meet personal attacks upon myself with logical refutation, not by returning in kind.
…to abide by the all rules of this forum.

I feel that if everyone stuck to these tenets, there would be much more productive, interesting & fun discussion here. You will never see me knowingly break this pledge. If you think I have, please call me on it.

If you do not wish to take it with me, no hard feelings. :)

Regards, Canis
"It is proper for you to doubt ... do not go upon report ... do not go upon tradition ... do not go upon hear-say." ~ Buddha
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 08 Jun 2010, 00:14

That is pretty much how I understand this Forum is to be. Everyone may have their opinions and argue to the death in favor of those opinions without fear of being banned. It's the personal attacks and name calling, rather than the attack on the quality of the information provided that makes the difference.

As for the 'F' word, personally I use it with reckless abandon more than a few times a day, but.... it has no place on a Forum such as this. As a Moderator the responsibility is with minors that might want to read or learn a bit about the different views. It's just not necessary. No harm, no foul as you and most of our members always attempt to take the high road and use wit to make your point.
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Re: What Are You Skeptical of...and what do you believe?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 08 Jun 2010, 00:24

ciscop wrote:so he gets to use the f word
and i get a final warning for saying nothing? what did i say that was offensive? Nothing!
i didnt say anything

Since you decided to bring it up, allow me to remind you how many times I have cut you slack on your rather colorful comments that border on nothing more than personal attacks. I have politely asked you to cool it or tone down your cynicism and it's always the same thing..... "What did I do?" or "OK" but nothing ever changes with you. Last chance. Period.

You've been temporarily banned more than once, so don't go giving me any BS about being clueless as to "Why?" Basically, this is your third and final shot. I don't care who you do it to and I don't care what the topic is. You have been given fair warning.
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