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danydandan

Skepticism!

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XenoFish

So at what point does it become simple disbelief when someone has spent years at something, which has lead to very little to zero results? Especially when it comes to something paranormal/supernatural. There has to be a point where 'I don't know' become 'no'. 

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Imaginarynumber1
5 hours ago, ouija ouija said:

Strictly speaking, scepticism is expressing doubt ..... nothing more, nothing less. Unfortunately, in so many threads/topics here, the doubt becomes "I doubt what you are saying, so you are wrong "! (With the implication that "I am right").

Yeah, but 99% of the time, I am right.

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danydandan
5 minutes ago, papageorge1 said:

Reasoned evaluation of all the evidence and argumentation from all sides with the accumulated knowledge and wisdom of a lifetime. 

Maybe I should have been more specific. Apologises that's my fault I was looking for the actual method.

As for example, if I told you all our memories are effectively useless and are malleable. We really should not trust our own memory. What would you do to conclude the feasibility of my statement?

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papageorge1
1 hour ago, danydandan said:

 

As for example, if I told you all our memories are effectively useless and are malleable. We really should not trust our own memory. What would you do to conclude the feasibility of my statement?

I would use my knowledgebase based on a lifetime of observing and considering.

Having considered that particular question, I believe it is a gross overstatement. I understand and always consider the imperfection of memory, but to consider our memories 'useless' is way out there for me. We would be extinct as a species if such were the case.

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danydandan
7 minutes ago, papageorge1 said:

I would use my knowledgebase based on a lifetime of observing and considering.

Having considered that particular question, I believe it is a gross overstatement. I understand and always consider the imperfection of memory, but to consider our memories 'useless' is way out there for me. We would be extinct as a species if such were the case.

Good answer, that's what I was hoping for. 

You actually read the statement, specifically the part about our memories being useless. That was the red herring, so to speak.

All too often we have examples of people jumping the gun or not actually reading a statement.

Edited by danydandan
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papageorge1
1 hour ago, XenoFish said:

So at what point does it become simple disbelief when someone has spent years at something, which has lead to very little to zero results? Especially when it comes to something paranormal/supernatural. There has to be a point where 'I don't know' become 'no'. 

You might consider that you are basing your beliefs about a vast universe with an untold number of beings and experiences on a sample size of '1' being. Is that wise?

Edited by papageorge1
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Ozymandias
6 hours ago, danydandan said:

I fear you've gone down the rabbit hole and are both a philosophical skeptic and scientific skeptic. The philosophical path, is a path a dare not walk you're a brave man. But your doubt is entirely evidence based, I like your definition.

Ah, yes! The rabbit hole! What an adventure - but which one I hear myself cry? And I'm not talking substance abuse here. When I have my common sense hat on I often disapprove of my frequent irrational behaviours. With my engineering/science hat on I am often amused by my the antics of my 'believing' self. When I am in belief mode my rational self wags its finger.

Despite my default scepticism, I know my real conflicted self is in good company. :)

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papageorge1
1 hour ago, Liquid Gardens said:

I have the opposite view actually.  I don't think 'skepticism' has been hijacked by biased skeptics, I think rather that the term has been poisoned by anti-skeptics who don't like or are uncomfortable with what the application of skepticism does and doesn't do for their pet beliefs.  Imputing psychological deficiencies ('no longer interested in fair consideration', 'defenders of an ideology', 'emotionalism', etc) on opponents is very easy and kinda empty as it avoids the core issue which is almost always lack of good evidence. And lord knows that some theists, paranormalists, crypto-believers, etc, are even juicier targets for this psychological projection that they are biased and guilty of motivated reasoning.  Of course all of this discussion of bias is besides the point; the only reason the debates tend to involve these psychological projections is because of the lack of good evidence to analyze and discuss.

I think atheism and anti-paranormalism also develop into emotionally-attached pet theories after enough arguing with theists and paranormal believers. Humans are emotional beings and have intellectual egos in play.

The 'lack of good evidence' is a judgment term and one I disagree with. To me the cumulative weight of the quantity, quality, consistency of anecdotal, experimental and investigative evidence eventually overwhelms in favor of a belief in the paranormal. But that is just my judgment.

.

 

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papageorge1
13 minutes ago, danydandan said:

Good answer, that's what I was hoping for. 

You actually read the statement, specifically the part about our memories being useless. That was the red herring, so to speak.

All too often we have examples of people jumping the gun or not actually reading a statement.

Actually this is a better thread (so far) than I am accustomed to on this forum. We are getting to the heart of our differences.

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danydandan
3 minutes ago, papageorge1 said:

Actually this is a better thread (so far) than I am accustomed to on this forum. We are getting to the heart of our differences.

That's because the point of the thread is to ask why people believe, rather than what people believe?

Also I often can't fathom how people don't automatically look for empirical evidence for their beliefs. I suppose my purpose or interest is metacognition relating to this subject.

Edited by danydandan
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XenoFish
26 minutes ago, papageorge1 said:

You might consider that you are basing your beliefs about a vast universe with an untold number of beings and experiences on a sample size of '1' being. Is that wise?

Far better than basing my belief or disbelief on something from lack of actual experience and effort. You believe many if not all paranormal/supernatural claims, yet you've never really gone beyond the book. Like I told you before, you're hands aren't bloody with this stuff. You haven't actually taken these things apart and looked at it's guts. 

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Podo

Skepticism, to me, means to examine claims in the most objective way possible, without closing yourself off to possibilities. Person says X claim, you investigate Y and Z things to support/refute X, then draw conclusions. If new information presents itself, you must re-examine the evidence. It is a method to always have the most rational and up-to-date stance on any given thing. Personal feelings should also be left largely aside; if a thing is established to be true via testing and evidence, then it is true no matter how you feel, until such time as it can be disproven via further evidence and/or testing.

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Will Due
12 minutes ago, Podo said:

Skepticism, to me, means to examine claims in the most objective way possible, without closing yourself off to possibilities. Person says X claim, you investigate Y and Z things to support/refute X, then draw conclusions. If new information presents itself, you must re-examine the evidence. It is a method to always have the most rational and up-to-date stance on any given thing. Personal feelings should also be left largely aside; if a thing is established to be true via testing and evidence, then it is true no matter how you feel, until such time as it can be disproven via further evidence and/or testing.

 

There are things that are true that cannot be established to be true via testing and evidence.

 

 

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papageorge1
26 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Far better than basing my belief or disbelief on something from lack of actual experience and effort. You believe many if not all paranormal/supernatural claims, yet you've never really gone beyond the book. Like I told you before, you're hands aren't bloody with this stuff. You haven't actually taken these things apart and looked at it's guts. 

But then there are those heavily involved that hold there is reality in some of this stuff. You still seem to be guilty of the sample size of ‘1’ error.

And again you just deflected the question around to being about Papa again as usual. This is a more broad discussion I hope than that old crap again.

 

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Podo
13 minutes ago, Will Due said:

There are things that are true that cannot be established to be true via testing and evidence.

Yeah, and there always have been. 10k years ago, the world was testably and verifiably flat, because we didn't have the methods to test it accurately. While the Earth is unarguably round, back then it still made sense to conclude that it was flat. If someone walked up and said that it was round, but couldn't prove it, it made logical sense to conclude that person was a nutter. Skepticism is going with the evidence, the best evidence at the current time. Knowledge changes, and our ability to test and evaluate also changes. That is precisely why things need to be re-examined upon the advent of new evaluation methods and/or new evidences. It's not necessarily about absolute truth or absolute falsehood, it's about doing the best with what we have access to, and keeping our knowledge current by constantly updating it as much as we can, as often as we can.

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XenoFish
6 minutes ago, papageorge1 said:

But then there are those heavily involved that hold there is reality in some of this stuff. You still seem to be guilty of the sample size of ‘1’ error.

And again you just deflected the question around to being about Papa again as usual. This is a more broad discussion I hope than that old crap again.

 

Yeah and those individuals who believe in the possibility of the paranormal haven't learned enough. It sickens me. It's like an intellectual step back. Might as well just be a superstitious knuckle dragger.

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Will Due
3 minutes ago, Podo said:

Yeah, and there always have been. 10k years ago, the world was testably and verifiably flat, because we didn't have the methods to test it accurately. While the Earth is unarguably round, back then it still made sense to conclude that it was flat. If someone walked up and said that it was round, but couldn't prove it, it made logical sense to conclude that person was a nutter. Skepticism is going with the evidence, the best evidence at the current time. Knowledge changes, and our ability to test and evaluate also changes. That is precisely why things need to be re-examined upon the advent of new evaluation methods and/or new evidences. It's not necessarily about absolute truth or absolute falsehood, it's about doing the best with what we have access to, and keeping our knowledge current by constantly updating it as much as we can, as often as we can.

 

But ten thousand years ago, when a new moon could be viewed the same at dusk as it can be viewed today, seeing how the sun reflecting off the earth backlights the moon to reveal that it's a ball, it wouldn't have taken a little imagination to understand the likelihood that the world is also round and like a ball.

This approach to those things that are yet to be proven true can also be viewed today in like manner, using the same little imagination. 

 

 

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papageorge1
5 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Yeah and those individuals who believe in the possibility of the paranormal haven't learned enough. It sickens me. It's like an intellectual step back. Might as well just be a superstitious knuckle dragger.

Sounds a bit egotistical like you are just smarter than the others. I doubt you are even so sure of that.

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XenoFish
2 minutes ago, papageorge1 said:

Sounds a bit egotistical like you are just smarter than the others. I doubt you are even so sure of that.

I've actually done stuff. You haven't so your opinions mean absolutely nothing. 

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papageorge1
1 minute ago, XenoFish said:

I've actually done stuff. You haven't so your opinions mean absolutely nothing. 

Gee, the threads about papa again and not the OP. Carry on we’re going nowhere again.

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Dejarma
7 hours ago, ouija ouija said:

Strictly speaking, scepticism is expressing doubt ..... nothing more, nothing less.

you couldn't be more wrong!

a real skeptic expresses doubt via logical thinking & any facts to hand!==nothing more, nothing less!? what are you waffling on about!?

this is where people like your good self get confused:

you feel someone like me (a skeptic) just types for the sake of it without thinking first:sleepy:

I feel this attitude is why dan felt a need to start this topic...............

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Dejarma
4 hours ago, papageorge1 said:

As a spokesperson for what the OP probably labels a 'believer', I would like to chime in here. I actually consider myself an open-minded skeptic. I use the best analysis of the  evidence and argumentation in forming my views on everything. I do not use blind faith at any point as a believer is held to do. Skepticism is a good thing.

In the current debate I believe the word 'skepticism' has been hijacked by a group that are not really open-minded fair skeptics at all but have grown into just being no-holds-barred defenders of atheism, anti-paranormalism, anti-alien, anti-cryptozoological, etc. I believe they have developed an attachment to these negative positions to the point that they are  not really any longer interested in fair consideration of the whole body of evidence and argumentation but their interests have morphed into just defending those positions I stated above. They are better described as defenders of an ideology than fair-minded skeptics. I see an emotionalism in the so-called 'skeptics' that doesn't fit the scientific attitude they are claiming.

In my opinion this thread isn't for the likes of your good self, Sir- I'll tell you why if I may:

you claim to have experienced things personally. You could be telling the truth- we don't know.

If your experiences are for real then skepticism shouldn't come into it with regards to your claim- or anything else regarding some form of 'the supernatural' that you KNOW FOR A FACT is real...

Though I'm sure you hear things that you think: 'hmmmm, maybe- without facts what can I say'!? IF you see my point

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Liquid Gardens
1 hour ago, papageorge1 said:

I think atheism and anti-paranormalism also develop into emotionally-attached pet theories after enough arguing with theists and paranormal believers. Humans are emotional beings and have intellectual egos in play.

I can't disagree with that, fair point, I guess it's just that I don't know the extent this is prevalent among skeptics.  As you say it's more a symptom of just being human no matter the other groupings they belong to, and I haven't seen that it's any worse a problem within the group 'skeptics'.  I guess we could say that it's particularly noteworthy for skeptics who may be seem to be more hypocritical for letting emotions/ego/bias color their reasoning while accusing their opponents of the same thing, but if hypocrisy or inconsistency is considered a problem the prevalence of that in skeptics I think is again dwarfed by the extent of inconsistencies in theists/paranormalists/etc.

1 hour ago, papageorge1 said:

The 'lack of good evidence' is a judgment term and one I disagree with. To me the cumulative weight of the quantity, quality, consistency of anecdotal, experimental and investigative evidence eventually overwhelms in favor of a belief in the paranormal. But that is just my judgment.

Agreed, 'lack of good evidence' is a judgment term but I think it's one you somewhat implicitly agree with to a minor extent given what I've quoted.  It's questionable how much need there is to even append 'but that is just my judgment' to propositions that are not lacking in good evidence. I would never say, 'the cumulative weight of the quantity, quality, and consistency of evidence favors the idea that the diversity of life on earth is the result of evolution and genetics', and then append 'but that's just my judgment' to it; it's a fact, an overwhelming one, the only thing it needs appended is a period.  

Just curious also, doesn't "You might consider that you are basing your beliefs about a vast universe with an untold number of beings and experiences on a sample size of '1' being. Is that wise?" also apply to what I've just quoted from you above?

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Podo
31 minutes ago, Will Due said:

But ten thousand years ago, when a new moon could be viewed the same at dusk as it can be viewed today, seeing how the sun reflecting off the earth backlights the moon to reveal that it's a ball, it wouldn't have taken a little imagination to understand the likelihood that the world is also round and like a ball.

This approach to those things that are yet to be proven true can also be viewed today in like manner, using the same little imagination.

Yeah but we didn't do it, so clearly it did take too much imagination. Roundness of the Earth is not a new piece of knowledge, but we certainly didn't know it 10k years ago.

What's your point, though? You're clearly fishing for something, but I can't figure out what it is. Are you opposed to testing knowledge and going with the most logical and provable conclusion? I think we all know the answer, but it'll be more fun if you say it yourself.

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Will Due
13 minutes ago, Dejarma said:

a real skeptic expresses doubt via logical thinking & any facts to hand!

 

It isn't logical thinking to be skeptical about something, when all the facts are not in hand.

 

 

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