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Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Discussions about the James Randi Educational Foundation and its Million Dollar Challenge.

Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby PrismEntity » 04 Apr 2011, 02:25

I mean, for what?

To make a million?

If they're genuine, they will go to the casino or the track, and make all the cash they could ever want.

Also, if they are really genuine, they are going to do everything they can to stay low key. Think about this seriously for a minute. If the government, hell, if the public, really believed you were genuine, then you would be one hunted individual.
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Arouet » 04 Apr 2011, 03:30

Where do you get that idea? Watching too many movies. Governments have employed psychics before. Or do you think they hire ones they know are fake to cover up the ones they have hidden over at Gitmo?
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby PrismEntity » 04 Apr 2011, 04:08

Where do you get that idea? Watching too many movies.


(Incorrect) Assumption.

Governments have employed psychics before.


Maybe. Maybe not. Actually irrelevent. What skill level? What the story, what happened, if they were real ones, who could produce consistent results? And, how do you know this?

Or do you think they hire ones they know are fake to cover up the ones they have hidden over at Gitmo?


How do you know they have psychics hidden at Gitmo?
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Arouet » 04 Apr 2011, 05:36

PrismEntity wrote:
Where do you get that idea? Watching too many movies.


(Incorrect) Assumption.


Ok, I'll bite: what evidence do you have that if psychics were real they would be hunted by the government.

Maybe. Maybe not. Actually irrelevent. What skill level? What the story, what happened, if they were real ones, who could produce consistent results? And, how do you know this?


It is quite well known. Uri Geller has had gvt contracts. Then there was the Stargate program where the government was doing research. Plus psychics have been hired by police agencies. All of this stuff is publicly available, you shouldn't have trouble finding sources.

Mind you, I don't believe any of them are real psychics, but that's besides the point: the government officials who hired them did.

How do you know they have psychics hidden at Gitmo?


You didn't add a smiley here, so maybe you thought I was serious. But I was making a funny.
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby PrismEntity » 04 Apr 2011, 11:23

Ok, I'll bite: what evidence do you have that if psychics were real they would be hunted by the government.


Ok, really? You have to be (EXPLETIVE DELETED) (EXPLETIVE DELETED) me, right? Some guy can tell you tommorows stock numbers (not to mention enemy troop strength, position, etc and so on), consistently and accurately, and everybody and they're brother aren't hunting for him/her? Please.

Mind you, I don't believe any of them are real psychics


Well, now theres the real point, isnt it?
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby PrismEntity » 04 Apr 2011, 11:25

sorry for the grammatical errors in the proceeding post. slightly inebriated....
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Craig Browning » 04 Apr 2011, 21:46

PrismEntity wrote:I mean, for what?

To make a million?

If they're genuine, they will go to the casino or the track, and make all the cash they could ever want.

Also, if they are really genuine, they are going to do everything they can to stay low key. Think about this seriously for a minute. If the government, hell, if the public, really believed you were genuine, then you would be one hunted individual.


Shows how much you DON'T KNOW about "genuine" psychics, most of whom do stay "low-key" on purpose -- to avoid sensory over-load. Secondly, most of them aren't concerned about economic gain though they may charge a nominal fee for their time, as anyone in business employing personal talent and years of study would do.

The one's that chase the headlines are typically seen as "frauds" by members of the psychic community itself and the more blatant charlatans are actually "outed" and at times handed over to the "Authorities" by said community on the grounds that they don't want to be affiliated with such individuals. In fact, the psychic community itself tends to expose more of the frauds than the so-called debunkers out there that read the Rowland book and a bit about Houdini and are possibly brain-washed by the JREF cult.

The majority of skeptics haven't a clue what the Psychic world & society is like because they are too busy puffing themselves up and believing themselves to be superior to everyone else to pay attention, let alone actually stepping into the trenches and possibly learning something. They always have some lave EXCUSE as to why they don't need to do such things and of course, most of the world knows what excuses are like. . . if those that are "rationalized".

Very few psychics working the commercial scene, are genuinely "gifted" intuitive talents, probably less than 5%. That minority usually work in the field out of necessity vs. preference; they tend to avoid anything that smacks of drama which includes chasing the media and chasing the dollar. While there are a few exceptions to this rule, the majority of them are quite private and seemingly aloof because of how the myriad of thoughts, emotions and other "social" energy affects them directly, even to the point of causing physical illness. Of those that are seen as being gifted, who end up in the lime-light, the majority of the "elders" (for lack of a better expression) look at them as being "traitors" -- "Frauds" but not for the reason most skeptics would recognize said tag, more for the fact that these individuals chose to chase after worldly gains through their gifts rather than serving "spirit" in the more honorable manner that has been traditions for eons.

Yes, the overwhelming majority of people that claim to be Psychic "aren't" -- again, not in the way most skeptics would think such. Rather, we are looking at the "delusional" -- those that have read a few books, taken a couple of workshops, learned to Read the cards or whatever and believe that's all that's needed aside from talking the talk. While some may have potential, most of them prove to be the worse Readers you could ever hope to meet. . . and yet, they somehow make a living. Within that grouping however, you have a very nominal percentage (maybe as much as 3%) who are deliberate criminals and predators; the sort that skeptics love to tie all professed psychics in with even though they are a proven minority.

My suggestion is that you go home and play with your Criss Angel magic kit and stop theorizing things based on what the evangelists of skepticism preach; maybe even grow a pair and find-out first hand what the psychic world really is about. Not by walking in with your mind already made-up, but by honestly being willing to be willing to learn and experience what it is all about directly. You might start with Joseph Weed's book "Wisdom of the Mystic Masters" and tell us how much boogieman crapoloa you don't find in the first several lessons (ignoring visualization concepts).
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Arouet » 04 Apr 2011, 23:16

PrismEntity wrote:
Ok, I'll bite: what evidence do you have that if psychics were real they would be hunted by the government.


Ok, really? You have to be (EXPLETIVE DELETED) (EXPLETIVE DELETED) me, right? Some guy can tell you tommorows stock numbers (not to mention enemy troop strength, position, etc and so on), consistently and accurately, and everybody and they're brother aren't hunting for him/her? Please.


That's not evidence. My hypothesis is your evidence for this is that you've seen movies where something like this has happened. Do you have any real life examples?

EDIT: unless by "hunted" you really mean: really want to hire but won't resort to kidnapping. If so, then I'd be inclined to agree with you.

Mind you, I don't believe any of them are real psychics


Well, now theres the real point, isnt it?


No, because the government employees who hired them beleieved they were real.
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby really? » 05 Apr 2011, 03:57

Arouet wrote:
PrismEntity wrote:
Ok, I'll bite: what evidence do you have that if psychics were real they would be hunted by the government.


Ok, really? You have to be (EXPLETIVE DELETED) (EXPLETIVE DELETED) me, right? Some guy can tell you tommorows stock numbers (not to mention enemy troop strength, position, etc and so on), consistently and accurately, and everybody and they're brother aren't hunting for him/her? Please.


That's not evidence. My hypothesis is your evidence for this is that you've seen movies where something like this has happened. Do you have any real life examples?

EDIT: unless by "hunted" you really mean: really want to hire but won't resort to kidnapping. If so, then I'd be inclined to agree with you.

Mind you, I don't believe any of them are real psychics


Well, now theres the real point, isnt it?


No, because the government employees who hired them beleieved they were real.



PE wrote
Shows how much you DON'T KNOW about "genuine" psychics, most of whom do stay "low-key" on purpose -- to avoid sensory over-load. Secondly, most of them aren't concerned about economic gain though they may charge a nominal fee for their time, as anyone in business employing personal talent and years of study would do.


Arouet how many times have you heard this excuse ? .
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Eternally Learning » 05 Apr 2011, 03:59

I will admit to not being the biggest fan of James Randi in his current form, and I think that there can be some legitimate reasons for anyone possessing real paranormal skills to not want to take the challenge. I think this card gets played up way too much and it is not the litmus test it's made out to be. I'm not a fan of Alex Tsakiris (Skeptiko) in the least but I found myself siding with him when he had Randi on as a guest. Here's how I view Randi; he seems to be primarily a show man, both at heart and in practice. He has his shtick and he stays with it. I don't think that makes him wrong or invaluable, on the contrary, I think he's provided a lot of useful examples to the public on how easy it can be to be fooled by someone. Those examples though, say nothing about people who may actually have some real abilities.

To not mislead anyone I'll say quite clearly that in essence, Randi and I would not seem to differ on many of our conclusions. Where we do differ is when he states unequivocally and repeatedly (sometimes in the same interview) that if there were real paranormal practitioners out there that they would take his test to win the money, and the fact that no one has won yet proves that none exist.

As for the whole military thing, I'm not sure why the government would hunt anyone down if they could contract them out. Maybe if the "genuine" psychic was trying to run away, but I just don't see it. Besides, what military engagements are we in where a psychic would really be needed that badly that they'd be hunted like animals? I can only think of possibly defending against terrorist attacks on our home soil or abroad, but given the complete lack of psychic warnings for 9/11 I'd think that one of these 3 scenarios are most likely:

1. Psychics are real, but they can't control their powers well enough to be useful in which case the military would have little need to hunt them down.
2. Psychics are not real, so there's no evidence for the military to take such drastic actions on.
3. Psychics are real and can see things like this, but are fearful of what would happen to them should they be found out, meaning that all of them value their own lives above the thousands that died on 9/11.

Let me know if you think I've missed something on that front. Also, as a side-note, I'm just using 9/11 as an example. Any major disaster or military strike would suffice for me as I've yet to hear about the brave psychic warning everyone and either being ignored or having saved the day.
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Eternally Learning » 05 Apr 2011, 04:23

Craig Browning wrote: Shows how much you DON'T KNOW about "genuine" psychics, most of whom do stay "low-key" on purpose -- to avoid sensory over-load. Secondly, most of them aren't concerned about economic gain though they may charge a nominal fee for their time, as anyone in business employing personal talent and years of study would do...

... The majority of skeptics haven't a clue what the Psychic world & society is like because they are too busy puffing themselves up and believing themselves to be superior to everyone else to pay attention, let alone actually stepping into the trenches and possibly learning something...

... Very few psychics working the commercial scene, are genuinely "gifted" intuitive talents, probably less than 5%. That minority usually work in the field out of necessity vs. preference; they tend to avoid anything that smacks of drama which includes chasing the media and chasing the dollar. While there are a few exceptions to this rule, the majority of them are quite private and seemingly aloof because of how the myriad of thoughts, emotions and other "social" energy affects them directly, even to the point of causing physical illness. Of those that are seen as being gifted, who end up in the lime-light, the majority of the "elders" (for lack of a better expression) look at them as being "traitors" -- "Frauds" but not for the reason most skeptics would recognize said tag, more for the fact that these individuals chose to chase after worldly gains through their gifts rather than serving "spirit" in the more honorable manner that has been traditions for eons.


If they are so low key, how can we be expected to know anything about them? I can only speak for myself as I am the only me I know, but I’m genuinely open-minded about this kind of thing and would love to believe that such things are possible. The reason I don’t is that I’ve never seen anything or anyone that convinced me. I by no means feel I’m superior to anyone as I’ve believed my fair share of things that turned out not to be true (IMO at any rate), but I’ve simply never seen these trenches you’re talking about to even step in them.

As for genuinely gifted psychics, I don’t need to see that all of them have stepped into the limelight to at least just say “Hey, we’re not leprechauns or unicorns,” or even need a majority of them to do this. I’d just ask that one of the small amount of those who have possessed these abilities over the last century or so to do so and have their skills documented to cause an effect significantly greater than chance in repeated tests. That’s it. If that were to happen, I’d be far more willing to dive into discussions about how these abilities work or how many of psychics are genuine.

I’ll even put this out there for anyone: If you can provide me the number of a psychic whom I can call/see/email and have them tell me either what my great-grandmother’s secret was, what I fear, or describe an event in specific detail that will happen to me the next day and have it come to pass with no ambiguity, then I’ll eat my words (wouldn’t be the first time) and start fighting for more scientific psychic tests. If I’ve asked for anything you don’t feel is reasonable of a genuine psychic, let me know and I’ll re-phrase to make it appropriate.
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Craig Browning » 05 Apr 2011, 22:15

There's a rather ancient saying, "Thou shall not tempt the lord thy god. . . "

In more mundane terms, when you chase after something the lower your chances at finding it. Have you even noticed how, when you're single it seems no one has an interest in you and the instant you get into a relationship would be opportunities come out of the woodwork?

Look at nature, how the very critters a lion would enjoy chowing down on will walk side-by-side with lions when they are well fed and the threat of attack does not exist. Same applies when it comes to human hunters in the wood and why they strive to be more and more stealthy so as to not project their intent for the animals to sense -- it's all an aspect of basic instinct for the sake of survival, to sense the aggressor and/or potential danger.

When it comes to things Psychic/Spiritual "faith" or put another way, "trust" is the key requisite, until you let go and stop insisting on some kind of unique experience, it's probably not going to happen. Too, the more critical (cynical) your personal perspective, the less likely you will be to recognize such things in that you'll be too busy trying to figure it out or applying one of the classic skeptic band-aids to the situation, such as "coincidence" or my favorite fickle-fart "self-fulfilling prophecy" (c'mon, in one breath skeptics say that affirmation & visualization/prayer don't work and yet, it is one of their favorite explanations when it comes to precognition or the fulfillment of prayer??? :roll: ).

People that want to hunt down this "proof" want to dissect the source in order to "figure it out" -- not because of general curiosity but so they can exploit that same ability for self-gain. . . this is the greater truth behind it all, just look at how much knowledge gets abused in the world and how much of it was once esoteric knowledge reserved for the few, be it mystical or technological; when the secrets become available they bring forth greed and a lust for power. This is why certain knowledge and certain truths must remain elusive except in those very rare instances.

If you honestly want to have such experiences set aside your bias and pick-up a copy of Joseph Weed's book "Wisdom of the Mystic Masters" and begin working the process it outlines. You will discover two things if you do this; a.) how mystical it really isn't; b.) how amazing it actually can be. It might take you a couple of years, but I promise that you're eyes will be opened and that's before you step anywhere close to some of the other factors associated with psi-development such as Tarot or the ways of the Kabalah. ;)
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Eternally Learning » 05 Apr 2011, 23:58

I’m entirely unsure of how this responds to what I said in any way other than to assert that I’m too cynical, too inquisitive, not open-minded enough, and have not been looking in the proper manner, all of which I take exception with.

1. I’m too cynical. Skeptical and cynical are two different things. Skeptical implies that belief is provisional based on reason and evidence. Cynical implies a pre-existing negative belief, and a generally sour attitude towards the thing being judged. I’m not cynical. I used to believe that this type of thing was possible and existed. The reason I no longer do is that I’ve yet to see sufficient evidence and/or reason to allow me to maintain that belief.

2. Too inquisitive. I won’t deny that I question things a lot, but I cannot see how that’s a problem if psychics can be genuine and you are not invoking some untestable claim to explain their skills. If you are, then it’s strictly a matter of faith, and that’s something I do not possess.

3. Not open-minded enough. Perhaps you thought I was being disingenuous in my last post, but I wasn’t. I absolutely would love to believe in psychic phenomena. Such abilities would make me giddy to witness. I’ve also never closed the door on any belief I’ve previously held; I still continuously look into religion to see if there’s something I’ve missed for example.

4. Not been looking in the proper manner. I honestly don’t know what this means. It sounds like you are saying that to look properly I have to not look, but that’s a nonsensical statement and would seem to imply that only those disinterested in the topic would stand a chance of finding a psychic. Besides that, your nature example doesn’t work because lions quite frequently catch what they hunt; that’s what they’re known for. Same goes for human hunters.

I find all of this though, to be completely beside the point unless your contention is that genuinely possessing paranormal skills means that you behave in a very specific manner from which no one has ever deviated. Human nature would seem to mandate that someone, at some time would have made the decision (reasonable or not) to reveal themselves or made some decision which accidentally revealed themselves.

Lastly, I’ll address your unsupported assertion that whomever wants to understand how such phenomena are possible and the mechanisms by which they work can only be motivated by selfish desires and not genuine curiosity. I’m sitting here telling you that I am genuinely curious. I’m not trying to win the lottery or the stock market, I’m not trying to remove some psychic gland which will make me psychic, I’m simply genuinely curious as to if such things exist, and if so how they function. Frankly, I find this argument of yours in direct contrast with your other argument about genuine psychics. There’s any number of reasons you present for why I have no proof of them, but you somehow have the ability to say with absolute certainty that no one can have virtuous motives in trying to learn?
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Ganondork » 06 Apr 2011, 07:13

Eternally Learning wrote:I can only think of possibly defending against terrorist attacks on our home soil or abroad, but given the complete lack of psychic warnings for 9/11 I'd think that one of these 3 scenarios are most likely:

1. Psychics are real, but they can't control their powers well enough to be useful in which case the military would have little need to hunt them down.
2. Psychics are not real, so there's no evidence for the military to take such drastic actions on.
3. Psychics are real and can see things like this, but are fearful of what would happen to them should they be found out, meaning that all of them value their own lives above the thousands that died on 9/11.

You're assuming that people would take such a prediction seriously. It''s a common argument used against predictions: Why do we only seem to know about predictions after the fact? Maybe people did predict 9/11 & even gave warnings, but nobody took them seriously.

Here's an experiment for you:
Google "2011 predictions".
How many are you going to take seriously? =P
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Re: Real psychics wouldn't take the challenge...

Postby Eternally Learning » 06 Apr 2011, 10:16

Ganondork wrote:
Eternally Learning wrote:I can only think of possibly defending against terrorist attacks on our home soil or abroad, but given the complete lack of psychic warnings for 9/11 I'd think that one of these 3 scenarios are most likely:

1. Psychics are real, but they can't control their powers well enough to be useful in which case the military would have little need to hunt them down.
2. Psychics are not real, so there's no evidence for the military to take such drastic actions on.
3. Psychics are real and can see things like this, but are fearful of what would happen to them should they be found out, meaning that all of them value their own lives above the thousands that died on 9/11.

You're assuming that people would take such a prediction seriously. It''s a common argument used against predictions: Why do we only seem to know about predictions after the fact? Maybe people did predict 9/11 & even gave warnings, but nobody took them seriously.

Here's an experiment for you:
Google "2011 predictions".
How many are you going to take seriously? =P


Come on, read the very next paragraph:

Let me know if you think I've missed something on that front. Also, as a side-note, I'm just using 9/11 as an example. Any major disaster or military strike would suffice for me as I've yet to hear about the brave psychic warning everyone and either being ignored or having saved the day.


I'm not assuming anything, but for people who are claiming that psychics exists I would expect any documented cases of such occurences to be shouted from the rooftops. I'm also not looking for predictions which haven't come true yet, I'm looking for (to make an example) a psychic telling police to evacuate the WTC before the first plane hit.
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