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Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby Indigo Child » 16 Jun 2010, 12:20

Prowag,

The controls were not set up by URI, but by professional scientists at SRI.

You statements that the controls should have been set up by a magician is actually
funny. Since, when are magicians qualified research scientists and required to be
present in every experiment a scientist conducts? :lol:

You are making magicians sound like all-powerful tricksters who can deceive even
under scientific conditions. What rubbish. Magicians require props, stooges, misdirection,
prepared objects, stages and curtains to hide things. There is not a single magic trick you could
show me that I could not explain.

There is no magic show here. Geller has no props, stooges, prepared objects, curtains to
hide things or any fancy routine to misdirect people. He is a test subject, submitting to the
test procedures of professional scientists, and has brought nothing but himself along.

You have failed to explain how Geller could have achieved his results through any kind of trickey.
Rather than you picking an experiment to dissect, I will pick one for you to dissect. The double
blind die experiment. The die is inside the metal box, it is shaken in front of everybody, nobody
in the room knows what face is showing up in the box. Geller is able to tell the number 8/8 times.

How?

You could have filled that room with magicians from all the world, even the amazing Randi himself, and
nobody would have been able to know what the number on the die was.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby really? » 16 Jun 2010, 19:43

Indigo Child wrote:Prowag,

The controls were not set up by URI, but by professional scientists at SRI.

You statements that the controls should have been set up by a magician is actually
funny. Since, when are magicians qualified research scientists and required to be
present in every experiment a scientist conducts? :lol:

You are making magicians sound like all-powerful tricksters who can deceive even
under scientific conditions. What rubbish. Magicians require props, stooges, misdirection,
prepared objects, stages and curtains to hide things. There is not a single magic trick you could
show me that I could not explain.

There is no magic show here. Geller has no props, stooges, prepared objects, curtains to
hide things or any fancy routine to misdirect people. He is a test subject, submitting to the
test procedures of professional scientists, and has brought nothing but himself along.

You have failed to explain how Geller could have achieved his results through any kind of trickey.
Rather than you picking an experiment to dissect, I will pick one for you to dissect. The double
blind die experiment. The die is inside the metal box, it is shaken in front of everybody, nobody
in the room knows what face is showing up in the box. Geller is able to tell the number 8/8 times.

How?

You could have filled that room with magicians from all the world, even the amazing Randi himself, and
nobody would have been able to know what the number on the die was.


Now you are sounding desperately pathetic.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby ProfWag » 16 Jun 2010, 21:23

really? wrote:
Now you are sounding desperately pathetic.

I agree really?. This is sounding like a small child would who's desparately begging a magician to reveal their secrets.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby Indigo Child » 16 Jun 2010, 22:44

I am going to remind both of you Prowag and really where you are:
SCEPCOP forum. This forum disapproves of pseudoskepticism, which
is what you are folks are indulging in here, and other places on this forum.

What we want here is intelligent and critical discussion on the paranormal,
not people to come here to preach anti-paranormal fundamentalist ideologies to us.
If you do not believe in the paranormal or even the possibility of the paranormal,
you should not be here. Period.

You are beginning with an assumption here that URI Gellers demonstration
of his ability is a "magic trick" And then try to look for trickey, and when you
don't find or any counter explanation, you beg the question by saying, "I am not
going to reveal the magic trick"

I am done debating with you guys, as you refuse to take on board any evidence,
anybodies point that support the paranormal and critically engage with them, but
rather you are here to preach your beliefs to us. You should not be at this forum.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby NinjaPuppy » 16 Jun 2010, 23:19

Indigo wrote:You have failed to explain how Geller could have achieved his results through any kind of trickey.
Rather than you picking an experiment to dissect, I will pick one for you to dissect. The double
blind die experiment. The die is inside the metal box, it is shaken in front of everybody, nobody
in the room knows what face is showing up in the box. Geller is able to tell the number 8/8 times.

really? wrote:Now you are sounding desperately pathetic.

ProfWag wrote:I agree really?. This is sounding like a small child would who's desparately begging a magician to reveal their secrets.

It sure sounds good to me. 8 out of 8 times inside of a box?
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby ProfWag » 16 Jun 2010, 23:37

Look Indigo Child, proving the existance of ESP, TK, life-after-death, and a myriad of other paranormal claims could very well be the most important discovery in the history of mankind. By simply believing whatever somebody writes without seriously questioning its authenticity is totally irresponsible. If you want to call me a "pseudoskeptic" because I don't believe in the paranormal and that I ask for, and demand, unquestionable proof of its existance, then fine, call me whatever you wish. My stance will remain that by not demanding the tightest controls for extremely important experiments is uncalled for, wrong, illogical, and, as mentioned, irresponsible.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby ProfWag » 16 Jun 2010, 23:40

NinjaPuppy wrote:It sure sounds good to me. 8 out of 8 times inside of a box?

Of course it sounds good. It's what made him a rock star.
I wanted to present evidence that Geller's a complete fake from someone other than Randi. I didn't have to look far. Here's part of a story on him from New York Magazine:

"What magicians may resent most about so-called psychics is the easy life they lead. If they can't make anything happen, they say they are not feeling right. If they can, they attribute it to the supernatural. The cardinal rule for dealing with psychics is, always be nice to them, or else they won't feel right. Geller's detractors charge that the S.R.I. researchers were so busy trying to make him feel comfortable, and so anxious to have something come of their experiments that, even if despite themselves, they did not subject Geller to the kind of coldly objective scrutiny they should have.

I began noticing things about Geller's feats I had missed before:

On the Merv Griffin Show two weeks ago, Geller located the one film can out of ten that contained a hidden object. Naturally, that one can was much heavier than the others, and so, if the tray on which the cans sat were jarred, that one would move differently. I noticed Geller move the tray with his hand and bump the table with his knee several times. Sure enough, he found the right can. In contrast, on the Carson show, he failed at this trick. Carson, once a magician himself, would not let Geller touch the table. He says it was his impression that Geller was stamping his feet very hard in time to the music during a station break, perhaps in hopes of jarring the cans. If so, it didn't work. Nor did Geller succeed at this on the A.M. New York show. There, on the advice of a magician, large, heavy film canisters had been used in place of the light aluminum cans. These would not move even when jarred. Geller, attempting to eliminate the empties one by one, chose the full one on the second try.

I brought Geller a metal file box with a die inside. If he has one of those new-fangled magic dice that have electronic "read switches" inside, he wasn't able to substitute it for mine. He failed eight times in a row to predict the roll of the die. He told me he never was any good early in the day. Next he drew a simple shape and tried to "pass" it to me telepathically. By watching his arm motions as he drew, I could tell more or less what he had drawn, and drew likewise. "That's fantastic," he said. (Indeed, he may have been truly astounded, though if he was, he was cool enough not to show it.) The second time, I covered my eyes with my hand as he drew, but peeked through my fingers. Again I scored. "Fantastic." He was hot. Then I drew a few for him, and he scored. "Fantastic." However, the drawing I had brought with me from home and had sealed in an opaque envelope proved impossible for him to receive. This time I had not let that envelope out of my sight even for a moment, as I realized I had the time we tried it with the valentine.

Then Geller tried to bend a metal spike I had brought; but it simply would not bend. He gave up and I left the room. But Geller called me back after a moment. He wanted to try again. He was holding one end of the spike in his hand. He concentrated, rubbed the spike, asked it to bend -- and when he removed his hands it was bent! Either Geller had bent it by thinking very hard, or else he had bent it under his foot when I went out of the room, covered the bend with his hand, and called me back in to try again.

"Our guys are aware that Geller sometimes resorts to magic," says S.R.I. spokesman Deutsch, "but that doesn't mean he is not genuine." As an amateur magician of some proficiency, Russell Targ should have been able to design cheat-proof experiments for Geller, and perhaps did. Even so, Deutsch is quick to say that S.R.I. has made no claims as to any powers Geller may have. "The work to date has been very preliminary. We've never ruled out the possibility of his being a fraud."

Perhaps Geller has performed genuine psychic feats in the laboratory -- or something, anyway, beyond mere trickery, that is worth studying. Based on the film, that would certainly seem to be so. More likely, but nearly as incredible, the researchers have been fooled, or they were fibbing -- a possibility which only in these days of Clifford Irving, Equity Funding, and the language of Nixspeak would I even dare to suggest. "

This article first appeared in New York magazine and is reproduced with permission.

© 1973 Andrew Tobias
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby NinjaPuppy » 16 Jun 2010, 23:54

Perhaps Geller has performed genuine psychic feats in the laboratory -- or something, anyway, beyond mere trickery, that is worth studying.

This also sounds pretty good to me. Why is it that his positive is not up for question?
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby ProfWag » 17 Jun 2010, 00:11

NinjaPuppy wrote:
Perhaps Geller has performed genuine psychic feats in the laboratory -- or something, anyway, beyond mere trickery, that is worth studying.

This also sounds pretty good to me. Why is it that his positive is not up for question?

I don't know.
I just think it curious, and odd, that he didn't subject himself to more rigorous tests. In today's day and age, it would be so simple to devise a test that would prove the existance of psychic abilities. I mean, take a look at his heavily edited video of the die-in-the-box experiment. They are using an index card box for chrissake! Why should anyone have to even touch the box? I just can't believe that was a valid experiment in the least and, if it was, why he didn't subject himself to more testing from another university.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby ProfWag » 17 Jun 2010, 02:18

In another thread, the discussion is on whether or not skeptics should be allowed on this forum. As a skeptic, I would like to stay, but I’ll go quietly if asked by the administrator. The reason I bring this up here is to show why I feel it is important to have skeptics in this forum. Allow me to present a comment from a “believer” (for lack of a better term):
Indigo Child wrote:Uri Gellar has been scientifically tested, and it has been
demonstrated conclusively in these experiments that he did
indeed mentally bend spoons, read minds etc

IC is clearly stating that Uri’s psychic abilities have been demonstrated conclusively. The word conclusively means, obviously, putting an end to a debate. Irrefutable. I questioned that statement immediately as I was unaware of Geller’s experiment results being conclusive. So, I went to the source and found the following quote from Dr’s Targ and Puthoff: “What we've demonstrated here are the experiments that we performed in the laboratory and should not be interpreted as of psychic functioning.”
So, I question his statement, but now he doesn’t want me here, presumably because I’m a skeptic and question his comment. Up for discussion, would a “believer” have questioned that statement or would they just go on believing that Uri has “psychic” abilities? If the answer is that a “believer” would not have questioned his comment, is that fair to the forum? If the answer is that a “believer” would have questioned his comment, would the criticism from the original poster be the same? I think it would. As such, I truly believe that “skeptics” should be allowed to question the comments without ridicule.
My humble opinion only.
Wag
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby NinjaPuppy » 17 Jun 2010, 02:59

ProfWag wrote:I don't know.
I just think it curious, and odd, that he didn't subject himself to more rigorous tests. In today's day and age, it would be so simple to devise a test that would prove the existance of psychic abilities. I mean, take a look at his heavily edited video of the die-in-the-box experiment. They are using an index card box for chrissake! Why should anyone have to even touch the box? I just can't believe that was a valid experiment in the least and, if it was, why he didn't subject himself to more testing from another university.

They type of box makes a difference??? As for the touching of the box, there are some who claim they need to connect in some way and as long as they are not connecting with their eyes, I see no problem with that.

As for the subjecting himself to more testing.... Craig Browing said it best and excuse me for not taking 20 or 30 minutes to look for the exact post that I am thinking of and linking to it. Perhaps we can get Craig to answer that question, again, himself.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby NinjaPuppy » 17 Jun 2010, 03:03

ProfWag wrote:In another thread, the discussion is on whether or not skeptics should be allowed on this forum. As a skeptic, I would like to stay, but I’ll go quietly if asked by the administrator. The reason I bring this up here is to show why I feel it is important to have skeptics in this forum. Allow me to present a comment from a “believer” (for lack of a better term):
Indigo Child wrote:Uri Gellar has been scientifically tested, and it has been
demonstrated conclusively in these experiments that he did
indeed mentally bend spoons, read minds etc

IC is clearly stating that Uri’s psychic abilities have been demonstrated conclusively. The word conclusively means, obviously, putting an end to a debate. Irrefutable. I questioned that statement immediately as I was unaware of Geller’s experiment results being conclusive. So, I went to the source and found the following quote from Dr’s Targ and Puthoff: “What we've demonstrated here are the experiments that we performed in the laboratory and should not be interpreted as of psychic functioning.”
So, I question his statement, but now he doesn’t want me here, presumably because I’m a skeptic and question his comment. Up for discussion, would a “believer” have questioned that statement or would they just go on believing that Uri has “psychic” abilities? If the answer is that a “believer” would not have questioned his comment, is that fair to the forum? If the answer is that a “believer” would have questioned his comment, would the criticism from the original poster be the same? I think it would. As such, I truly believe that “skeptics” should be allowed to question the comments without ridicule.
My humble opinion only.
Wag


And IC also gave information that I quoted that so far no one has been able to rebutt. I don't see anyone commenting on how much IC does prove either.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby ProfWag » 17 Jun 2010, 03:44

NinjaPuppy wrote:They type of box makes a difference??? As for the touching of the box, there are some who claim they need to connect in some way and as long as they are not connecting with their eyes, I see no problem with that.

Yes. A BIG difference. For example, was it locked? Did it even seal? Could someone misdirect and peek into the box? The video is heavily edited and we aren't able to see the experiment from beginning to end so we don't even know if Uri handled the box or not. I have read that he did and, in fact, even shook the box himself. I wasn't going to comment on that as I didn't want to go find the reference, but anyway, to answer your question: If you were conducting experiments on Uri. Would you, A) Use an everyday index card box that doesn't lock and possibly even allow him to touch it, then claim success? Or,
B) Use a solid box, locked, shaken at random, and the number on the die identified before the box is unlocked.
Repeat 10 times. Take Uri and the box to U.C. Berkely and do the same thing with a separate set of scientists.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby NinjaPuppy » 17 Jun 2010, 03:55

ProfWag wrote:Yes. A BIG difference. For example, was it locked? Did it even seal? Could someone misdirect and peek into the box? The video is heavily edited and we aren't able to see the experiment from beginning to end so we don't even know if Uri handled the box or not.

Wouldn't smart money be on the skeptic in the room crying foul if any of this happened or even suspected of happening? Was there someone there claiming to be "The Enforcer"?

ProfWag wrote:I have read that he did and, in fact, even shook the box himself.

Ooooooh, he shook the box! You make it sound like that box had a puppy in it. :lol:

ProfWag wrote:I wasn't going to comment on that as I didn't want to go find the reference, but anyway, to answer your question: If you were conducting experiments on Uri. Would you, A) Use an everyday index card box that doesn't lock and possibly even allow him to touch it, then claim success? Or,
B) Use a solid box, locked, shaken at random, and the number on the die identified before the box is unlocked.
Repeat 10 times. Take Uri and the box to U.C. Berkely and do the same thing with a separate set of scientists.

C) All of the above.
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Re: Hal Puthoff and Russell Targ talk about Uri Geller's powers

Postby caniswalensis » 17 Jun 2010, 04:07

NinjaPuppy wrote:Ooooooh, he shook the box! You make it sound like that box had a puppy in it. :lol:


It is a well known fact that Uri Gellar tortures puppies as a hobby.



Ok, do I need to say that I am joking? :lol:
"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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