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How Can Skeptics Still Deny the Supernatrual?

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posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 09:54 AM
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originally posted by: jaws1975

originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2

Are you familiar with the term confirmation bias? The reason skeptics can still be doubtful is because most (if not all) supernatural explanations start with a confirmation bias. "Such and such exists, let me go find evidence to support that claim." That is the incorrect way to go about verifying something's existence. For one, you don't verify existence; you demonstrate that it exists. There is a difference.


I disagree, just look at Eben Alexander the Harvard neurosurgeon who had a very compelling NDE. There was zero confirmation bias there.link

I personally feel like science and skeptics really aren't that interested in proving "supernatural" phenomena, if they were they would be down in the amazon rainforest investigating the world of aya.


" There was zero confirmation bias there..."

But there's a book.
There's always a book...



Personally I'd turn the thread question around and ask why are there still believers in the supernatural?




posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 10:04 AM
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a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2

For anyone interested a few of us on ATS are planning a trip
into the unkown.
It's a members only invite plus one. But I believe there is
safety in numbers. Check out the last five pages or catch up
on the whole thread.

SnF OP



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 10:17 AM
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a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2

I don't deny the supernatural, nor am I a rabid believer in all things spooky.

I feel strongly that there are many strange events that cannot be rationally explained, but I personally believe these events to be of a multi-dimensional nature rather than ghouls and ghosts.

I believe the multiverse model to be entirely plausible, and I suspect many paranormal events are simply "bleed-through" from another reality that is normally well hidden from our sight.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 10:30 AM
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a reply to: Pardon?



Personally I'd turn the thread question around and ask why are there still believers in the supernatural?



Why would you do that?



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 10:35 AM
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a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2

Over the years I have only found two things that help to open a skeptics mind..

They have to have a personal experience before they will accept there is more than they already know,
or, someone has to prove it to them via a question and watch the answers.

It boils down to experiencing something "paranormal" for themselves.
Which is healthy.
I wouldn't accept anything blindly either unless I can experience it for myself somehow.
Otherwise it is just words on paper or coming out of someone else's mouth.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 10:42 AM
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Skepticism is good so long as one doesn't completely shut down their common sense and investigational skills.

I really liked a story I read a while back about a scientists who started investigating EVP's. What he found blew him away and made him a believer. I love seeing skeptics drink from the thinking well.

Sometimes, I'd like to take these skeptics to a very active place, put a camera on them, and leave them. I'm willing to bet that many of them, even after witnessing something unexplainable, would never admit it because then they'd be wrong. Arrogance is a tool that many hardcore skeptics possess.

In this day and age, I think many scientists are willing to believe that the paranormal exists. If they truly want to see proof, then the next time some family is on the news or internet, that is scared to live in their own home, THIS is where these skeptics should go so that they can study it.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 10:53 AM
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a reply to: Darkblade71
a reply to: Fylgje

Let's not forget that a true skeptic IS open-minded. I/we are not saying that the paranormal or supernatural is not possible, or being experienced.

The problem with personal experiences is that they are subjective and up to interpretation. The human mind is easily tricked and what you may think was a ghost, the next guy believes it was a holy sign.....and I think it was simply lights and shadows.

I've seen some weird things in my life, and every time it was easily explained. But too many people are quick to jump on the paranormal/supernatural bandwagon because they are not open-minded and already want to believe.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 11:14 AM
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a reply to: sheepslayer247
That is a good point.

It works both ways.

The important thing is to be skeptical, and not cynical.

I often welcome skeptical views, and actually enjoy them.
Always rule out the physical first before running to a paranormal answer.

Many times I have had to debunk my own experiences and found logical explanations for many things.
Other things, well, I know better because it is such a major part of my life.
I am a believer who understands there is a difference between belief and KNOWING.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 11:18 AM
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originally posted by: sheepslayer247
a reply to: Darkblade71
a reply to: Fylgje

Let's not forget that a true skeptic IS open-minded. I/we are not saying that the paranormal or supernatural is not possible, or being experienced.

The problem with personal experiences is that they are subjective and up to interpretation. The human mind is easily tricked and what you may think was a ghost, the next guy believes it was a holy sign.....and I think it was simply lights and shadows.

I've seen some weird things in my life, and every time it was easily explained. But too many people are quick to jump on the paranormal/supernatural bandwagon because they are not open-minded and already want to believe.




One of the issues I have is everything that is unexplainable is lumped into one big pile of paranormal, what I mean is that it comes down to our current understanding of what is normal?
For instance how do we know that spirits ghosts or whatever are people that have passed on? I have my doubts that we have nothing better to do on the other side but to make strange remarks to people holding recorders? I do believe strange thing happen all the time but we don't have the understanding as to why...not yet anyway. But I don't buy the skeptics answer to paranormal happenings either,then again I don't accept the believers explanation.
I would like to think that what is not understood now will be eventually...



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 11:33 AM
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a reply to: jaws1975

That's not a testable nor repeatable experience/experiment. The opinion and experiences of one person, even if it is a neurosurgeon does not equal irrefutable evidence of NDE's.

As soon as the neurosurgeon had the experience, if he wanted to apply the scientific method correctly, he should have said, "hmmm, that is interesting." I wonder if we can look further into this with repeatable experiments to explain this phenomenon. Not say, "WOW! That was crazy, NDE's exist!"

Oh by the way, from the very wikipedia article you just linked:

In a wide-ranging investigation of Alexander's story and medical background, Esquire magazine reported (August 2013 issue) that prior to the publication of Proof of Heaven, Alexander had been terminated or suspended from multiple hospital positions, and had been the subject of several malpractice lawsuits, including at least two involving the alteration of medical records to cover up a medical error.[11][12] The magazine also found what it claimed were discrepancies with regard to Alexander's version of events in the book. Among the discrepancies, according to an account of the Esquire article in Forbes, was that "Alexander writes that he slipped into the coma as a result of severe bacterial meningitis and had no higher brain activity, while a doctor who cared for him says the coma was medically induced and the patient was conscious, though hallucinating."[12][11][13]


So it appears that this man has been known to falsify data and not to mention, he was a bad brain surgeon. Of course he denies that he altered his account. But it's hard to argue with official medical records. In any case, there is more.


Alexander's book has been criticized by scientists, including neuroscientist Sam Harris, a leader of the New_Atheism movement, who described Alexander's NDE account (chronicled in Newsweek, October 2012) as "alarmingly unscientific," and that "everything – absolutely everything – in Alexander's account rests on repeated assertions that his visions of heaven occurred while his cerebral cortex was 'shut down,' 'inactivated,' 'completely shut down,' 'totally offline,' and 'stunned to complete inactivity.' The evidence he provides for this claim is not only inadequate – it suggests that he doesn't know anything about the relevant brain science."[14] "Even in cases where the brain is alleged to have shut down, its activity must return if the subject is to survive and describe the experience. In such cases, there is generally no way to establish that the NDE occurred while the brain was offline."[15] Neurologist and writer Oliver Sacks agreed with Harris, saying that "to deny the possibility of any natural explanation for an NDE, as Dr. Alexander does, is more than unscientific – it is antiscientific."..."The one most plausible hypothesis in Dr. Alexander's case...is that his NDE occurred not during his coma, but as he was surfacing from the coma and his cortex was returning to full function. It is curious that he does not allow this obvious and natural explanation, but instead insists on a supernatural one."[16]


This man looks like a Christian who happened to be a neurosurgeon. He almost dies and has an experience he can't explain. Then he immediately jumps to there being an afterlife. That ISN'T sound science. I don't care what you say. It's just wrong. What he experienced may well have been legit, but he destroyed his credibility by putting the cart before the horses and making conclusions without proper testing and experimenting. These errors become even worse when you understand that the man is a doctor and should be WELL versed in the scientific method.

It's no surprise that the longest entry in the man's wikipedia article is the criticism and reaction section. Thanks for making it easy to debunk your counterpoint though.

edit on 2-10-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 12:17 PM
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originally posted by: jaws1975
I disagree, just look at Eben Alexander the Harvard neurosurgeon who had a very compelling NDE.


Absolutely, his book, has drawn a huge amount of cynicism.

The scientific fundamentalists scoff and attack his book (Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife) because a spirit world clash's with their own scientific cult fundamentalism.


• The experience of the afterlife was so "real" and expansive that the experience of living as a human on Earth seemed like an artificial dream by comparison.

• The fabric of the afterlife was pure LOVE. Love dominated the afterlife to such a huge degree that the overall presence of evil was infinitesimally small.

• In the afterlife, all communication was telepathic. There was no need for spoken words, nor even any separation between the self and everything else happening around you.

• The moment you asked a question in your mind, the answers were immediately apparent in breathtaking depth and detail. There was no "unknown" and the mere asking of a question was instantly accompanied by the appearance of its answers www.divinitynow.com...



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 12:26 PM
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a reply to: Murgatroid

A spirit world does not clash with a scientific viewpoint. In fact, there are many in the field of theoretical physics that believe we may someday find that multiple dimensions in string theory can provide and explanation for paranormal or supernatural events.

Sure, you are bound to have naysayers in any field, but I think most people are open to the possibilities.

As far as Alexander, I think Krazyshot has provided enough background info to conclude that this man is probably a money-grubbing liar that was hallucinating.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 12:42 PM
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a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2

Great thread.


I grew up in a "sensitive" family with psychic's and healers. My upbringing allowed me to me open minded to the paranormal. When most of my friends were going to church, my family was attending psychic fairs, having our auras read and attended spiritual centers rather than cathedrals. For me, the paranormal is a natural part of life.

As a life long lucid dreamer and someone who has OBE's on the regular, I know for a fact there is more to this life/world/universe than we can touch, see or hear. That's where intuition comes in to play, as you said, humans are excellent at "sensing" things. With my life experience and open mind, I'm not afraid of the paranormal, while I respect it, I don't fear it.

That being said, many people fear the paranormal. Their pastors, priests or family may have told them it was evil or of the devil. I think most people fear it and since they fear it they can't accept it or believe it.

Will there ever come a day when the paranormal can be scientifically proven?



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 12:45 PM
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a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2

All of this "endless evidence" yet none of it is evidence. Funny, that. I think it is rather the credulous who are the skeptics, for they are skeptical of reality in favour of their hopes, dreams and desires.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 12:51 PM
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originally posted by: sheepslayer247
As far as Alexander, I think Krazyshot has provided enough background info to conclude that this man is probably a money-grubbing liar that was hallucinating.

Why so gullible?

He is citing info from Wikipedia...

End of argument as far as I am concerned.


originally posted by: aBlueRAY
From a psychoanalytical point of view, I have to assume deep in your heart you know wikipedia would be the number one piece of propaganda available online for the masses.

It is a propaganda outlet dominated by people who want to radically transform our existence. Who Controls Wikipedia?



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 01:22 PM
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a reply to: Murgatroid

Gullible? Please.

Are you saying that the information provided is not accurate? There are other sources than Wikipedia that give the same information.

Can I take a guess that it really doesn't matter? No matter what source is cited, you believe the man and will defend his statements no matter what?



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 01:30 PM
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a reply to: LoneCloudHopper2


Is this directed at all skeptics or just a person skeptical about the paranormal and spiritual matters?

If just the paranormal then why not ask the direct question,

Skeptical of paranormal, why?

Oh its because you already gave the 2 answers you believe to be most common.

Why do those answers bother you, why must someone believe in something you do and when they say they don't why cant you leave it at that, why must you be skeptical of their answer which is based on their experience of this reality?





I'm sorry, skeptics, I can appreciate your fear of the unknown, but your assertions speak of, dare I say, self-delusion to me.



Great way to end your query thread,

Throw the delusional card around at each other.

Important question is is this directed to skeptics, skeptics of paranormal explanations for unknowns or debunkers.

Everyone is a skeptic, you are by starting this thread, so could you clarify who this thread is directed at, I assume skeptics simply of paranormal explanations however not so sure as of late as there is a ignorance in the air that seems to have quite an effect on many minds, mine included.



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 02:01 PM
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originally posted by: sheepslayer247
Are you saying that the information provided is not accurate? There are other sources than Wikipedia that give the same information.

Absolutely not...

If you cited a source that had credibility, I would look at it.

If you cite something like Wikipedia on the other hand, I won't even bother wasting my time.

All I'm saying is that anyone who trusts what Wikipedia says is gullible.

Even if you are only a minority one, the truth is the truth.




posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 02:11 PM
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originally posted by: LoneCloudHopper2
I'm sorry, skeptics, I can appreciate your fear of the unknown, but your assertions speak of, dare I say, self-delusion to me. At this point, the writing is pretty bold on the wall.


Dare I say, I think you're self projecting quite a bit of yourself onto others (skeptics).

When people bring Soul Weight (and the like) into a conversation about being a valid argument for the paranormal, you know that individual did no research whatsoever. They likely acquired their information off some terrible TV show like Ancient Aliens, or worse, some New Age Mystery website, and took it as truth without question.

This is why I have no faith in the paranormal field at large. Belief systems and confirmation bias gone wild!
edit on 2-10-2014 by Calalini because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 2 2014 @ 02:28 PM
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I know what u mean . When my team go into a location to investigate . We go in with the intention to prove its not haunted and if we cant prove that well .. if people go into a house thinking its haunted they have planted the seed and any little noise will be a ghost to them there imagination will take over .that's just my opinion .thanks



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