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Can Skepticism Blind You to the Truth?

arthur ellison belief skepticism truth blind disbelief

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#1    Still Waters

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 02:54 PM

An odd experiment, done by a believer in paranormal phenomena, opens a few questions about how everyone perceives the world. We know that belief can blind people - but can disbelief do the same thing?

http://io9.com/can-s...eringlis-arkell

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#2    Junior Chubb

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 03:25 PM

We all make decisions based on personal experience that cloud our judgement before entering a situation.

But I cry 'no fair' on this experiment...

I've flown from one side of this galaxy to the other. I've seen a lot of strange stuff, but I've never seen anything to make me believe there's one all-powerful Force controlling everything. There's no mystical energy field that controls my destiny. Anyway, it's all a lot of simple tricks and nonsense.

#3    DecoNoir

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 04:06 PM

Well of course a believer of the paranormal will say skeptics are blinded from "the truth". Maybe if they started applying the scientific method and stopped blindly believing every personal experience they come across, they can be taken seriously.

And like Chubb, I'm calling foul.

I reject your reality, and substitute my own! Mostly because yours is boring as hell.

#4    Merc14

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 06:19 PM

In the experiment two people made something up.  One said a gray mist rose from the floor and the other said the bowl never moved.  Both are liars and should be dismisssed as morons.

As for the rest of the group, the believers would accept that the bowl levitated and say their belief in the paranormal has been justified.  The skeptics would also accept that the bowl levitated but would then try and figure out what gravitational, electrical or magnetic force had acted at a distance on that bowl to make it levitate.  

If the skeptics could find no mechanism or scientifc way to prove such a force had acted on the bowl, then they'd have to admit to the existence of the paranormal in this instance.  

So far the last bit has never happened.

Edited by Merc14, 24 March 2014 - 06:25 PM.

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#5    Lilly

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 07:31 PM

This seems more like cynicism than skepticism. Like Merc said, a true skeptic would say the bowl moved but would then try to find out how it moved.

Edited by Lilly, 24 March 2014 - 09:16 PM.
grammar

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#6    Hideout

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 10:07 PM

Quote

Can Skepticism Blind You to the Truth?
Skepticism leads you where ever the evidence points. So far we've discovered that evidence tends to lead to truth.

To those who do not know mathematics it is difficult to get across a real feeling as to the beauty, the deepest beauty, of nature ... If you want to learn about nature, to appreciate nature, it is necessary to understand the language that she speaks in.
--Richard Feynman

#7    FlyingAngel

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 10:07 PM

Skeptic means study then believe. It's not a disbelief in anything. Instead of jumping to the conclusion like "true", "false", a true skeptic will put the subject in question under the state "unknown". A study will then necessary to decide whether it's "true/false" or still "unknown" (require more test).

The key to prove something is "repeatable", "experimentable". Something which is randomness or personal experience is very hard to do experiment with


#8    davros of skaro

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 03:12 AM

Science does not require faith, while wanting to believe needs no evidence.

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#9    Slave2Fate

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 03:27 AM

View PostLilly, on 24 March 2014 - 07:31 PM, said:

This seems more like cynicism than skepticism. Like Merc said, a true skeptic would say the bowl moved but would then try to find out how it moved.

That was the first thought that came into my head as well. Skeptics aren't 'deniers', they merely judge an event based solely on the evidence. And for the record, words (testimonies et al) are the least reliable form of evidence. If the evidence doesn't adequately support the conclusion then skeptics will point that out.

It's not "That didn't happen!".

It's "You can't logically draw that conclusion (to the exclusion of other possibilities) with the evidence available!"

"You want to discuss plausibility then you have to accept reality." -Mattshark

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You know... the plural of ``anecdote'' is not ``data''. Similarly, the plural of ``random fact'' is not ``mystical symbolism''. -sepulchrave


#10    White Crane Feather

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 05:49 AM

View PostHideout, on 24 March 2014 - 10:07 PM, said:


Skepticism leads you where ever the evidence points. So far we've discovered that evidence tends to lead to truth.
All possible evidence maybe, but evidence paints a picture not necessarily the truth.

"I wish neither to possess, Nor to be possessed. I no longer covet paradise, more important, I no longer fear hell. The medicine for my suffering I had within me from the very beginning, but I did not take it. My ailment came from within myself, But I did not observe it until this moment. Now I see that I will never find the light.  Unless, like the candle, I am my own fuel, Consuming myself. "
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#11    White Crane Feather

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 05:53 AM

View PostSlave2Fate, on 25 March 2014 - 03:27 AM, said:



That was the first thought that came into my head as well. Skeptics aren't 'deniers', they merely judge an event based solely on the evidence. And for the record, words (testimonies et al) are the least reliable form of evidence. If the evidence doesn't adequately support the conclusion then skeptics will point that out.

That's the way it's supposed to be, however that's not the way It usually happens.

Edited by White Crane Feather, 25 March 2014 - 05:55 AM.

"I wish neither to possess, Nor to be possessed. I no longer covet paradise, more important, I no longer fear hell. The medicine for my suffering I had within me from the very beginning, but I did not take it. My ailment came from within myself, But I did not observe it until this moment. Now I see that I will never find the light.  Unless, like the candle, I am my own fuel, Consuming myself. "
Bruce Lee-

#12    White Crane Feather

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 05:56 AM

View Postdavros of skaro, on 25 March 2014 - 03:12 AM, said:

Science does not require faith, while wanting to believe needs no evidence.
It most certainly does.

"I wish neither to possess, Nor to be possessed. I no longer covet paradise, more important, I no longer fear hell. The medicine for my suffering I had within me from the very beginning, but I did not take it. My ailment came from within myself, But I did not observe it until this moment. Now I see that I will never find the light.  Unless, like the candle, I am my own fuel, Consuming myself. "
Bruce Lee-

#13    davros of skaro

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 06:05 AM

View PostWhite Crane Feather, on 25 March 2014 - 05:56 AM, said:

It most certainly does.

The beverage can is still next to my computer for you, and your spirit buddies to provide me with your evidence.

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#14    White Crane Feather

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 06:15 AM

View Postdavros of skaro, on 25 March 2014 - 06:05 AM, said:



The beverage can is still next to my computer for you, and your spirit buddies to provide me with your evidence.
Immature appeals to ridicule does not bolster your opinions. In fact it demonstrates your inability to argue the matter coherently which shows that indeed your attitude is faith based not evidence based. You make my point. ;)

"I wish neither to possess, Nor to be possessed. I no longer covet paradise, more important, I no longer fear hell. The medicine for my suffering I had within me from the very beginning, but I did not take it. My ailment came from within myself, But I did not observe it until this moment. Now I see that I will never find the light.  Unless, like the candle, I am my own fuel, Consuming myself. "
Bruce Lee-

#15    davros of skaro

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 06:27 AM

View PostWhite Crane Feather, on 25 March 2014 - 06:15 AM, said:

Immature appeals to ridicule does not bolster your opinions. In fact it demonstrates your inability to argue the matter coherently which shows that indeed your attitude is faith based not evidence based. You make my point. ;)

I have a can next to my computer for you, and Mr Walker to show me the validity of claims you two made in the past.So far I only get ignored, or received excuses.

As for my opinion, you have only shown to me that you use spirituality to hide anger issues.

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http://m.youtube.com...h?v=mwUZOZN-9dc <-- "Why I Think Jesus Didn't Exist"




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