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In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

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

Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Craig Browning » 16 Nov 2011, 00:16

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby craig weiler » 16 Nov 2011, 12:19

ProfWag,
You seem to be the only one with an intelligent criticism. Are the psi experiences the same? That's a good question because obviously, if these experiences are different, then what we have is more akin to religion.

The answer is that while people might describe the experiences differently, and experience different things, pretty much everyone agrees on how its done. You can open any book on how to develop your psychic ability and you will find them all to be remarkably similar in what they are trying to achieve through different approaches. You can find these similarities in every culture.

For individuals working alone:
1. A meditative state of mind
2. Intent without focusing too closely on the goal
3. A quiet space
4. An emotional state of acceptance and trust

You are not going to find much deviation from this anywhere.

I am quite amused, by the way, at the mental gymnastics of the other skeptics here. They believe that they're somehow superior in their thinking to most other people. It's a great ego massage but it's just not true. Our brains are wired to perceive the world from that egocentric viewpoint, but objectively of course, the rest of the world is much smarter than we give them credit for. Smarter than us quite a bit of the time.
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Arouet » 16 Nov 2011, 13:03

You forget about situations of danger, situations when the person is near death or thinks they are near death, situations where someone is staring at the person, situations where someone is calling the other person, situations where the person studies for a test after the test, situations where the person is asleep, or just falling asleep, or just waking up, or on various recreational drugs.

There is a huge variety of experiences that are linked to psi. And accepting for the sake of the argument that psi is not real, wouldn't you still expect similarities from these experiences, given our common biology?

As for the skeptics around here thinking they are smarter than everyone else - there's only one person who comes to mind lately who recently joined this forum and immediately started belittling the intelligence of others. Hint, it's not a skeptic. Do you need another hint who it could be?
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby ProfWag » 16 Nov 2011, 21:38

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Nostradamus » 16 Nov 2011, 22:12

I too very much doubt that billions of people have the same experience. It really doesn't matter how many believe. Believing does not make it true or not true.

What is in question is whether or not the JREF challenge is defensible.

Maybe these claims that bad thoughts affect the outcome are not correct since you claim there are billions of believers.
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby really? » 16 Nov 2011, 22:21

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby craig weiler » 16 Nov 2011, 23:01

ProfWag,
Yes, I agree, they're similar.

Now, to the other skeptics and their logical fallacy argument I've addressed this already . . . in detail . . . as to why I think that argument doesn't apply here. Let's agree to disagree.
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Arouet » 16 Nov 2011, 23:43

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby craig weiler » 17 Nov 2011, 00:23

A ship in harbor is safe, but that's not what ships are for.
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Arouet » 17 Nov 2011, 01:43

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Craig Browning » 17 Nov 2011, 04:54

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Arouet » 17 Nov 2011, 04:58

We were talking to CW, who had ignored my rather simple example of why his appeal to the majority argument was flawed.
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby ProfWag » 17 Nov 2011, 06:33

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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby Arouet » 17 Nov 2011, 07:00

CW is trying to differentiate the case of psi from the case of religion since he believes that psi is about the experience not the belief.

But that's not true. We all agree about the psi experience - it the belief about the interepretation of that experience that is important.

Craig is trying to argue special pleading here but it's not working.
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Re: In defense of the JREF Paranormal Challenge

Postby craig weiler » 17 Nov 2011, 11:16

We disagree! I see no point in re-arguing everything.
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