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Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of psi?

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Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of psi?

Postby Paradox » 02 Feb 2011, 14:28

I have always been a sceptical person my entire life. It took quite alot to get me to believe that perhaps the universe is stranger than we could ever imagine and it also took alot to convince me that psi is not pseudoscience but a very little known topic actually though there is alot written about it. Even being a supporter of psi I just can't help notice how many different books and websites disappoint me on the topic of psi such as: String Theory proves there are afterlife 'dimensions', quantum entanglement proves 'quantum consciousness', Relativity proves survival of death since energy can't be destroyed, reincarnation until we become 'God' and so forth.

I guess what I'm asking here is do any other believers of psi think that sometimes bogus books and articles with no real scientific backup as well as combining every fringe subject such as hidden cancer/disease cures, endless conspiracies, ufo/unproven alien races, pseudomedical advice and freaky gadgets actually hurt the cause and credibilty to the serious investigation of psi? From all of the jargon I've been reading about easily 99% of the websites and 90% of books written on this topic seem to me to make the cause of investigating psi a joke along with their magnetic bracelets and ionized water (oh I almost forgot to add the greys and reptilians here). Are many psi supporters actually digging their own graves here?
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby The Warrigal » 02 Feb 2011, 15:45

Hi Paradox.

In answer to your question, I have no doubt that the vast welter of false claims, ill researched books and articles do indeed undermine the credibility of all attempts to investigate psi seriously.

And once again, the uncritical acceptance of almost every quack medical "cure" and conspiracy theory by all too many supporters of paranormal research, makes it almost impossible for psi to get a fair hearing.
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby Paradox » 03 Feb 2011, 16:12

The Warrigal wrote:Hi Paradox.

In answer to your question, I have no doubt that the vast welter of false claims, ill researched books and articles do indeed undermine the credibility of all attempts to investigate psi seriously.

And once again, the uncritical acceptance of almost every quack medical "cure" and conspiracy theory by all too many supporters of paranormal research, makes it almost impossible for psi to get a fair hearing.



Yes I feel the serious scientific research into psi, near death experiences, etc is being hijacked by conspiracy theorists, quack medicine, nonscience based new age claims (where it seems anything goes) and vitamin/mineral supplement pushers. Because of this it now seems ghosts/spirits have the same reputation as the Loch Ness Monster, Santa Claus and the tooth fairy. There are psi/ghost/afterlife researchers who are trying in vain to isolate themselves from these fringe elements but perhaps more of us need to do a better job on a larger scale.

Between fundamentalist religions and close-minded scepticism/obscurantism it's hard enough as it is already for psi to be taken seriously without elements within the psi movement itself to be sabotaging its own efforts. :(
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby Craig Browning » 05 Feb 2011, 05:30

If you see my post on 11:11 I think you will see first hand that YES, the "bogus" situations hurt and hurt in a very big way. BUT, take a look at any typecast... how many Gay people, for example, do you actually know that have the stereotypically lisp, limp wrist, swish when they walk and insist on dressing in drag?

I can tell you for fact that far more straight men cross dress than Gay men and the majority of the gay people in the world AREN'T the "pretty ones" -- the one's dressed in designer everything, with the top model body, hair, etc. No, most of them are invisible to the average person and truth be known, a lot of them aren't very "proud" when it comes to being stigmatized by the FREAKS -- labeled as something they aren't.

This is true with the Psychic world and why so many people (myself included) roll their eyes the minute someone say's they are Psychic and begin rambling about seeing this, hearing that, et al. But then you have the real frauds -- the predators that take on a psychic image for the sole purpose of ripping people off. . . an contrary to the uneducated opinion of most skeptics, such individuals are a minority within the psychic industry and yet, all of us that work that world endure the negative taint (very few having the required teeth for snapping back :roll: )

Whenever a predator type (charlatan) or potentially dangerous Cult-Builder is found, it is typically the other Readers in an area that expose them and run them out of town NOT THE COPS OR MAGICIANS CHASING A HEADLINE. But this is a side to the Psychic world few know about or even think possible.

My point to all of this is how a group of people get judged based on what a minority element does or has been made public in highly dramatic ways (like the press harping on things).

Squeaky Wheels always get the attention -- the one's that are the loudest, most obnoxious and visible. When some screw-ball runs around on YouTube (for example) doing well known magic tricks and CONvicing people that he's a genuine psychic ( :roll: not that such videos have ever found their way here :roll: ) it isn't just an insult to the more sincere and honest people working in that world, it is a dangerous insult to the general public.

A COUPLE OF CORRECTIONS HOWEVER. . . you are confusing Metaphysical beliefs with the Psychic issue. While they tend to have a connection with one another, one can live a metaphysically oriented life and not buy into all the psychic stuff; you can literally live as a Wiccan and never participate in the working of spells, casting of hexes, etc. In the case at hand you will find many Buddhist teachings that condemn those that "perform" miraculous things such as seeing the future, levitation, and such. As His Holiness would put it, "Who does such great works serve?"

They serve NO ONE other than the person doing them who is compelled to demonstrate such things in order to have followers -- he's weak and desperate without followers and therefore not an enlightened one as claimed. Understand?

When it comes to Reincarnation, while many who call themselves "Psychics" believe in it, not all that believe are psychic... it's not requisite and it may interest you to know that this isn't just one of the oldest known spiritual teachings, it was likewise a primary aspect of early Christianity well into the 6th century (though it was officially condemned and removed from the Orthodox canons in the mid-5th century).

My belief in Reincarnation stems from many experiences but even ignoring that, it's the logic found in the ideology that appeals most to me in that I don't believe in a single almighty deity with a throne, big book of Boo, etc. While the deity might exist, something so omnipotent certainly would have created a system for checks & balances that would aid its creation rather than destroying it, don't you think?

Given the many things you question and how you word those questions, I still believe you would be doing yourself a tremendous amount of good if you simply stopped rambling and meandering long enough to just listen... to pick up a copy of Gibran for an example, and read it out loud so you can HEAR what the words say.

You're starting on a quest but you've yet to accept that it's time for an adventure. Instead, you're sitting there trying to find reason and understanding without introducing yourself to the proverbial bull and grabbing him by the horns... the bull's name is LIFE... try taking a ride on it. ;)
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby derrida » 06 Feb 2011, 00:33

totally.. no doubt about it
it hurts the credibility..
if project alpha taught anything is that EVERYBODY can be fooled
geller did it.. and it is beyond amazing for me that there´s people like wu saying he is real


i have a lot of books regarding parapsychology.. i wanted to believe so bad in grammar school and highschool.. but.. is nothing but bogus claims.. craig can tell you better than i the story of parapsychology and their ties to 1800´s mediums .. and pretty sure he actually goes beyond that.. but i am happy with that comparison..

if the seed is rotten from the start, the tree wont give you fruits..
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby Paradox » 06 Feb 2011, 18:56

A COUPLE OF CORRECTIONS HOWEVER. . . you are confusing Metaphysical beliefs with the Psychic issue. While they tend to have a connection with one another, one can live a metaphysically oriented life and not buy into all the psychic stuff; you can literally live as a Wiccan and never participate in the working of spells, casting of hexes, etc. In the case at hand you will find many Buddhist teachings that condemn those that "perform" miraculous things such as seeing the future, levitation, and such. As His Holiness would put it, "Who does such great works serve?"

They serve NO ONE other than the person doing them who is compelled to demonstrate such things in order to have followers -- he's weak and desperate without followers and therefore not an enlightened one as claimed. Understand?

When it comes to Reincarnation, while many who call themselves "Psychics" believe in it, not all that believe are psychic... it's not requisite and it may interest you to know that this isn't just one of the oldest known spiritual teachings, it was likewise a primary aspect of early Christianity well into the 6th century (though it was officially condemned and removed from the Orthodox canons in the mid-5th century).

My belief in Reincarnation stems from many experiences but even ignoring that, it's the logic found in the ideology that appeals most to me in that I don't believe in a single almighty deity with a throne, big book of Boo, etc. While the deity might exist, something so omnipotent certainly would have created a system for checks & balances that would aid its creation rather than destroying it, don't you think?

Given the many things you question and how you word those questions, I still believe you would be doing yourself a tremendous amount of good if you simply stopped rambling and meandering long enough to just listen... to pick up a copy of Gibran for an example, and read it out loud so you can HEAR what the words say.

You're starting on a quest but you've yet to accept that it's time for an adventure. Instead, you're sitting there trying to find reason and understanding without introducing yourself to the proverbial bull and grabbing him by the horns... the bull's name is LIFE... try taking a ride on it. ;)


I don't think I was confusing metaphysical beliefs with mediumship (or at least I wasn't trying to). Basically my biggest 'rant' here is with many of the New Age websites claiming that quantum physics proves psychic phenomena is real or quantum physics proves we have an ethereal body when we pass on. Quantum mechanics and nuclear physics shows that this is POSSIBLE but it doesn't actually prove these concepts. The same thing with new agers trying to use String Theories 11 dimensions. These 'dimensions' according to String Theory have absolutely NOTHING to do with alternative universes where consious entities can actually reside. The term 'dimension' used in string theory has a different meaning than even that of the many worlds interpretation.

As far as other afterlife or psi related issues go I have no problem with those topics because I think we all (whether a sceptic or not) have our own differences of opinions when it comes to the paranormal. Some paranormal investigators and psychics believe in reincarnation and some don't. Even in the reincarnation camp there are differences of opinions. Some believe almost everyone will eventually reincarnate (depending on the circumstances) while others say reincarnation happens but it's not as common as people think. I could write a 10,000 word essay on reincarnation and everything I've read about it but that is another topic. However many Evangelans and Pentecostals would give you a strong argument about reincarnation being taken out of the Bible (or they would try). Personally I believe the Bible transcribers so severely and even intentionally mistranslated what Jesus really had to say that trying to use the Bible as a reference isn't something I prefer to do. I think there is some truth in the Bible (depending on which one you read) but that 'truth' has been severely obscured by mistranslations, deliberate altering of texts and leaving out a load of texts that should have been included. So yes I agree with you on that one.

My main rant is not differences of opinions when it comes to ANY paranormal related issue but mixing every other topic with it such as ufos, bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, endless conspiracies, pseudomedical information among other things. The paranormal should be kept to the topic of the paranormal. Not all paranormal websites do this and there are some good paranormal websites out there but many others are polluted with other topics and misinformation. This makes the entire field of investigating psi equivilent to the Moon Hoax or the end of the world in 2012 bullcrap. Many 'open-minded' people have turned the issue of psi into a joke.

I'm not sure what you're implying on your bottom paragraph and who is Gibran?
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby Craig Browning » 07 Feb 2011, 03:56

:lol: Gibran (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khalil_Gibran) was a popular poet & writer that worked from a spiritual perspective. I still find it humorous however, how he is seen by many facets in the Christian world as a legitimate "Prophet" while others who've taught and said much of the same he's shared over the years, are looked upon with contempt.

I do agree with you when it comes to how half-wits combine various things into one massive bundle.

Professionally I'm a Mystery or Psychic Entertainer (retired) and as such I find myself fit to be tied much of time, because all the kiddies that have jumped onto the proverbial bandwagon associated with this field - mentalism & bizarre magick along side hypnosis -- don't know the first thing about what is what. This is especially true when it comes to the difference between donning a blindfold and doing an Intuition based demonstration vs. wearing a blindfold and claiming to be Clairvoyant. Exoterically (on the surface) it will look as if both are the same but they aren't; the Intuitionist cannot see into your pockets or purse and tell you how much change you have, nor can they predict future events based on "Visions". Such demonstrations involve Clairvoyant ability and yet I see fools mixing the two constantly, giving no regard as to how they are being laughed at by a public that knows more about the subject than they're willing to learn. Magician's just love to do tricks and typically lack the audacity required for creating miracles. :twisted:

I see similar things in the New Age/Pagan communities especially with the success of John Edward & Ms. Brown. . . suddenly everyone became a "Psychic-Medium" which is a bit of a redundancy given that one of the primary psychic abilities out there is "Clairvoyance" e.g. being able to make contact with the unseen and ethereal. Mediumship involves at least one of the "Clair" abilities (Clairvoyance, Clairsentient, Clairessence, etc.) but rarely involves more than two, with one being more dominate than the other. Notice how Edward describes things in symbols; this is Clairvoyance which is exactly what he's always claimed while he does express some limited aspects of Clairessence (tactile expression). I point this out because of how Ms. Brown blurs all of these things into one big heap when she blurts things out, she's horrid!

When it comes to these same Metaphysical types grabbing onto tid-bits of legit scientific studies I have to chuckle in that most are making a really big mountain out of data that barely composes a mole hill.

Yes, there is data coupled with tons of THEORY that suggests certain aspects of psychic ability and metaphysical claims (like after-life, the existence of a soul, aura, etc.) a PLAUSIBLE and in some instances, such as Telepathy, a bit more than that. But, these patrons of the fantastic are so desperate to not be wrong that they do the same thing people who negate their beliefs do -- they take things to an extreme rather than finding that mid-point in which the greater reality resides. The stubbornness of mind results in the creation of a potpourri sense of expression (a little bit of everything) that might seem nice on the surface, but sours in short time and proves rotten rather quickly... it falls apart even before you break out the magnifying glass let alone a microscope. The reason being that they (all of us, actually) do not have the patience to let things solidify, we see connections of all the dots but fail to see what is in between each point, which results in a muddled mess in the majority of cases.

I wish I could be more clear with things, but we haven't time nor space. . . nor desire to take on such a giant challenge. ;)
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Re: Do bogus claims actually hurt serious investigation of p

Postby Paradox » 14 Feb 2011, 04:23

I wish I could be more clear with things, but we haven't time nor space. . . nor desire to take on such a giant challenge. ;)[/quote]

Well thanks for describing Gilbran. I do tend to take these issues seriously because as far as the origin of our universe goes I think (personal opinion) that consciousness or information may be the missing element though we don't have the ability at our point in time to research this using the scientific method. Perhaps both the religionists, spiritualists and atheists are all correct at the same time (at least in some aspects). I could have sworn that I've had quite a few encounters with ESP myself though these events always seemed to happen when I wasn't trying. I still never considered myself 'psychic'. I still believe there are a few real ones but I've always been skeptical of the 'tv' and 'phone' ones.
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