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This is for all the 'ufo believers' must read.

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posted on Oct, 19 2008 @ 09:27 PM
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Originally posted by silver6ix
Many skeptics on this board mock some of the people who believe in alien craft for their rediculous ideas and cant grasp that their own position is no better. "its a bird" fine, prove its a bird, they wont because their brand of fact doesnt require proof, only the possiblity that it fits what they CHOOSE to believe. I see no use or value for that kind of skepticism myself.


I believe that ufos exist not that they are alien in origin. Yes when someone claims that a ufo is something like a bird then yes they must prove it and also when someone also states that something is extraterrestrial in orgin should they also have prove that beyond a shadow of a doubt. The problem I have with believers is this...they constantly make claims and never offer any substantial proof..only statements such as thier real and your close minded or you are a disinfo agent or links to ufo videos/documenteries. Like i stated before I want to believe but this subject will never get anywhere. What we need is a neutral ground...accept that this is only theory..accept that there is no tangible proof and seriously question facts that are given. There should be no believers and there should be no skpetics in order for us to get somewhere. If we could all work together maybe the answers to questions we have willl come. As long as the believers of this take aliens are here as fact without having any proof and as long as the hardcore skeptics who push aside everything without investigating anything..then we will never get anywhere but where we all are now...arguing amongst each other. Not all skeptics push everything to the side some of us just require more..that's all.

[edit on 19-10-2008 by riggs2099]




posted on Oct, 19 2008 @ 09:32 PM
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"There should be no believers and there should be no skpetics in order for us to get somewhere."

Exactly what ive been saying all along. Neither position helps and both cause more distractions than they are worth.

Open minded consideration and cold hard study is what UFO study needs, if it could shake of the farce of stigma maybe it would get that.



posted on Oct, 19 2008 @ 10:51 PM
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reply to post by mc_squared
 


mc squared!

What I find funny is that you asked for calmness on both sides (critics & believers) and then taken a big swipe at the believers to which their only form of action will be to defend their position - hence another likely sh*t fight between the 2 parties.. lol!

Oooops!

It's not that I disagree with the spirit of your post, I agree to the causes of the problems in UFOlogy that you site in the Op.. but perhaps you shouldn't have taken a swipe if you want calmness..


.. and then do a back-flip and 'back' the believers over the skeptics in a subsequent post... man what are you up to?

I'm just going to sit back and watch this unfold with a packet of beer nuts!

IRM



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 05:22 AM
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reply to post by InfaRedMan
 


well crap! lol

I really wasn't trying to chastise the believers - trust me, there were a lot more "swipey" things I've wanted to say over the last few weeks that I've managed to bite my tongue on so far.

The pissing contest unfortunately just comes with the territory because I'm pretty sure it's a rule of thumb that one ALWAYS ensues whenever ANYONE states their opinion about ANYTHING, ANYWHERE on the internet



But I'm just hoping some "believers" can see the bigger picture is all.

In all honesty a lot of them remind me of me when I first started reading up on UFO's. I had my own UFO experience years ago and took to the internet in search of answers. All the out-of-this-world explanations were so much more exciting then the mundane ones and I was completely ready to "believe!!" and forget everything I thought I knew about the world around me...

But eventually you come across enough inconsistencies in the storyline that you really start to question what's what again - or at least some people do anyway.


I think this is a critical moment that happens to every single "believer" that falls into the UFO rabbit-hole. Eventually you're going to come across some sort of disappointment* - either a hoax or a contradiction or your first introduction to a Chinese Lantern.

It's how you handle this moment that probably defines what kind of person you're going to be for the rest of your amateur UFO-researching career.

Some people get so bitter and jaded they instantly become grumpy old skeptics. They resolve to poo-poo on anyone who dares try to fool them with this crap again.

Other people get very angry and defensive, shoot the messenger, close their eyes and go right back to living in their exciting bubble - waiting for the day disclosure comes and they can start living out all their Star Wars fantasies for reals!

And then other people are just genuinely humbled by the experience. They realize their previous paradigm-shift maybe needs to shift back a bit. They come to understand that the only way they're going to sort anything out of this madness is by keeping a level head at all times - and that critical thinking is their #1 weapon of choice.

It is during those instances that the world of UFOlogy can rejoice - because another "healthy skeptic" has been born and that's how we ALL move one progressive step closer to uncovering the truth, whatever it may be.


*Last week a lot of people came to this crucial moment of sobering disappointment.

I really wasn't trying to attack anyone for it - I already saw a lot of people doing that. I also saw others telling everyone to just stay strong and stick their heads back in the sand/clouds.

I'm just hoping some people become aware of the third option - and let 'em know they're more than welcome to join the rest of us up here on the fence - as long as they understand our definition of the word 'skeptic' and why it NEEDS to be in the job description.

[edit on 20-10-2008 by mc_squared]



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 09:34 AM
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I believe in UFO's I've seen them before,the ones I don't believe are theses so called Prophets,any fool can make a claim and when they are wrong like always they always have an excuse,there is proof of UFO's but no truth in the mouths of thses charletans



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 09:43 AM
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posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 09:54 AM
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Long time lurker - first time poster,

Its a lovely thought isnt it? Lets all just get along...the reality is that we wont. While I agree with the theme of the thread I want to make it clear I am well and truly ensconced on the fence when it comes to UFO's of alien origin, a positive skeptic if you want.

BUT - dont we need the extremes from both points of view to get some middle ground??



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 10:37 AM
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reply to post by pedetemptim
 


Welcome to ATS pedetemptim!

IRM



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 11:53 AM
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Also a long-time lurker, first-time poster.

I'm a skeptic in the general sense of the word. In terms of aliens, I think it's highly likely other life exists in the universe, remain unsure about the probability of intelligent life arising, and think it's highly unlikely that intelligent extraterrestrial life is visiting us. If there's more evidence, I'll revise my position - but that's my starting point.

Part of the problem in some discussions here, as I see it, is believers and skeptics are looking for different things in the evidence that's posted.

Example: someone posts a video clip of something shooting past. I'm looking for some reason to believe it might be alien. As things stand, I have no reason to believe it might be, so if it could be a bird, a plane, a balloon, whatever - I'm unimpressed. Whereas, to a believer, the explanation 'it could be an alien craft' is equally valid because they already believe. They believe it's a possible explanation; I'm looking for a reason to believe it's a possible explanation. They're looking for evidence of a phenomenon; I'm looking for evidence for it.

So when someone says "well, prove it's a bird", I do a double-take. That's not the way it works! But I think a lot of the arguments here are down to people approaching the same clip with different base-assumptions and different expectations.

I also think some believers can - perhaps understandably - be a little defensive. Not all skeptics are out to ridicule. Take (crosses himself) the Oct 14th thing. I saw some people write "skeptics will be eating their words if it's true" etc. But that's a profound misunderstanding of the position. Being a skeptic is about evaluating the evidence. If a UFO had appeared, the skeptic would have been right to doubt beforehand, and right to believe afterwards.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 12:30 PM
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Good discussion so far ! I'm what I'd call a fence sitting believer myself - I've read enough UFO based research to believe they exist in some form, and that they could very well be both extraterrestrial and terrestrial craft. Is there proof ? Nope, at least not anything the public has access to so far.

What makes the UFO subject and it's civilian investigation unique in regards to comparisons with scientific efforts and research dollars spent on other theories is that we’re looking into something that is technically considered a matter of “national security”. IMHO that puts it into a research class of it’s own. Not only are we looking for something that’s elusive to begin with as a phenomena, but a phenomena that is extremely “protected” and sensitive to our government. It would be the same as trying to prove the existence of the atomic bomb during the development of the Manhattan project. I’m sure it was possible to connect the dots at the time but I doubt you’d live long enough to talk about it. Feel free to dispute, but I think this is a factor that needs to be considered.

It’s almost impossible to look into the UFO phenomena without encountering the government based “cover up” phenomena. Makes for a very sticky mess. Do you believe in ET’s ? Do you believe in Black Ops technology ? Do you believe in government conspiracies and cover ups ? Personally, from all the research and data I’ve seen it’s necessary to keep all these factors in mind.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 02:10 PM
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Well said mc-squared!!! You can't state it any better than that!!

Excellent!



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 02:51 PM
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Quote "You're probably here because you "want to believe" right? "

Nope. I am here because I seek the truth. Whatever the truth is.
I have too many questions, and not enough answers.
I seek many avenues to find knowledge.
I have an open mind.
I have not the need to conform and believe what is popular.

I will ask, though, why it is that many skeptics cannot offer valid arguement/evidence whilst "believers" tend to offer myriad supporting information? I guess, "Nuh-uh!" is good enough sometimes.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 03:21 PM
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Originally posted by Badgered1
Quote I will ask, though, why it is that many skeptics cannot offer valid arguement/evidence whilst "believers" tend to offer myriad supporting information? I guess, "Nuh-uh!" is good enough sometimes.


I'll answer. Technically, a valid argument doesn't matter so much. It's necessary, but it's important that the valid argument is sound, and that depends on the premises being true - which is precicely the issue.

It's not for the skeptic to prove anything. If you present evidence for something, it needs to be good; a skeptic doesn't need to prove it isn't.

For example, if you believed in reincarnation and presented me with someone who claims to be Napoleon, it isn't up to me to prove he isn't Napoleon. It's up to you to explain why this counts as evidence that reincarnation exists.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 05:59 PM
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Originally posted by pedetemptim
BUT - dont we need the extremes from both points of view to get some middle ground??


We definitely want both sides of the debate, but I think the "extremes" really are the last thing we need more of.


The idea isn't so much let's all get along as it is let's argue more efficiently.


We spend pages and pages yakking about videos of blurry streaks shooting past windows. In the end, even if no one can prove it's a hoax or a bird or whatever - all we're left with is an unexplainable streak shooting past a window.

Whoopee.

But to so many believers - "unexplainable" automatically means 100% PROOF of aliens. Period. Anyone who doesn't see that is just naive or close-minded and attacking their beliefs.


The sad truth is the best thing that usually comes out of these debates is when someone does in fact debunk them - because at least that's when you see creative problem solving at it's finest. The Haiti video and the identical palm trees for example - pure bleeping genius!

But for the most part - "unexplainable" is the best case we can determine. Which is good enough - because then we can collect that evidence, catalog it, compare it to others and eventually formulate theories (and hopefully methods on how we might be able to prove them).


This is my ideal image of UFOlogy in action, and there are many great people making it happen - here and elsewhere - but it just really sucks that sometimes it's so hard to hear their voices amongst all the pointless shouting from the two extremes.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 06:01 PM
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Also - yeah, it's nice to see some lurkers coming out of the shadows to make great contributions to the discussion. Welcome to ATS, guys.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 06:07 PM
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Originally posted by maudeeb
What makes the UFO subject and it's civilian investigation unique in regards to comparisons with scientific efforts and research dollars spent on other theories is that we’re looking into something that is technically considered a matter of “national security”. IMHO that puts it into a research class of it’s own. Not only are we looking for something that’s elusive to begin with as a phenomena, but a phenomena that is extremely “protected” and sensitive to our government. It would be the same as trying to prove the existence of the atomic bomb during the development of the Manhattan project. I’m sure it was possible to connect the dots at the time but I doubt you’d live long enough to talk about it. Feel free to dispute, but I think this is a factor that needs to be considered.

It’s almost impossible to look into the UFO phenomena without encountering the government based “cover up” phenomena. Makes for a very sticky mess. Do you believe in ET’s ? Do you believe in Black Ops technology ? Do you believe in government conspiracies and cover ups ? Personally, from all the research and data I’ve seen it’s necessary to keep all these factors in mind.


I think you completely nailed it right here.

This is why it's so hard to get a lot of legitimate scientists involved in the discussion - because they're so put off by the association with cover-ups and conspiracy theories (not to mention the yahoos).

The fact is if you're going to legitimately consider the extra-terrestrial hypothesis, there is almost no way you can not include the possible cover-up. It's just unfathomable to think that IF some of these cases are in fact true, the military has no prior knowledge of them.

And when you examine some of the best cases in detail, you do indeed find that the military has their fingerprints on almost all of them.

To me the UFO phenomenon is unquestionably real. Whether it's actually aliens is a whole other question - but the inconsistencies in the official military explanations and denials are some of the best pieces of implicit evidence we have that give this theory more weight.

I just wish some scientists could see it that way.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 07:12 PM
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I've already had quite a lot to say on this subject in another thread, and I don't think I can say it any better, so I'll just unashamedly quote myself.



Right now I have a mental picture of a bunch of children at a playground. Having drawn a big line down the middle in the sand, they are now dividing themselves up into two groups - the Skeptics and the Believers - so everyone knows which side they're on and who the "enemy" is.

I was hoping that people here might have outgrown that sort of thinking. That there would be room for the curious, open-minded person who wants to learn new things, add information from both sides of an issue and allow it to modify their existing beliefs - or not - and discuss, theorize, hypothesize, and debate (which in my opinion can be a form of thinking out loud while using more than one brain, kind of like a distributed computer network).

Hey, that's me! I'm in the middle, where do I go? I'm not a Skeptic because I've seen a UFO and I believe some eyewitness accounts and pictures I've seen and heard. But I'm not a Believer because I'm still not convinced where UFOs come from or who pilots them, and I won't accept every claim at face value. (For example, I'm still not convinced that our world leaders are reptilians). Am I going to get sand kicked in my face from both sides because I won't join either camp?

I don't believe there are two groups with a dividing line between them. I believe there is a continuum that stretches from people who believe nothing is real unless the mainstream scientists say it is to the people who've been to Alpha something-or-other with beautiful Nordic aliens who have the answers to all of our problems. Most of us are probably somewhere in the middle; why can't we see that in the big picture we have more in common than not?

How about picking a few specific cases and "investigating" them, or throwing together the bits and pieces of knowledge that each of us has and seeing if we can come up with a "big picture" that is coherent and makes sense?

The dictionary definitions of ignorance include:
"lack of knowledge, learning, information" and "The condition of being uneducated, unaware, or uninformed" and "the lack of knowledge or education." Ignorance can not be denied by fighting amongst ourselves, and it will never be corrected by accusations, insults, or hatred. The only cure for ignorance is information and knowledge. If you really want to deny ignorance, you must help others learn. And, if you didn't already know this, people don't learn very well when they're on the defensive or angry. Give them facts and information they didn't have before, stimulate them to think about things in different ways and see different points of view, that is denying ignorance. And you will never accomplish that with insults, accusations, derision, condescension. You will seldom accomplish it with sarcasm or irony (although good humor sometimes helps).


AND



Have you ever heard of "divide and conquer?" As long as we are all fighting amongst ourselves, sniping back and forth across the invisible fence that we have erected to separate believers and skeptics, we will never find the truth or learn much.

As I see it, there are three camps (actually 4 but I don't have a good word for the 4th group).

1) Disbelievers, sometimes mistakenly called skeptics. These people are determined not to believe anything that hasn't been proved by conventional science or in a court of law. Their stance may be a result of fear, inherent narrow-mindedness, or a need to feel superior to those of us who would even consider believing such "garbage" as aliens, bigfoot, etc. It is useless to try to engage these people in discussion or debate, they will NOT be convinced and will only make fun of and insult the other groups.

2) Skeptics. These are people who simply know that they don't know what the truth is. They can be swayed by evidence, logic, and reasonable discussion. Their feet are firmly planted in the "real world" but their minds are open to new knowledge and other points of view. They are worthy opponents in debate and better allies when we seek to find the truth.

3) Believers. These folks may have had a personal experience, or been affected by a family member or trusted friend who had a personal experience. Or perhaps they are simply convinced by what they have seen, read and heard. They are not fools nor idiots, they simply require less evidence to believe something than some of the rest of us do. They provide a slightly different point of view which can sometimes be eye-opening to the true skeptic, and they can be very helpful when trying to consider the evidence from all angles. In debate or discussion it is difficult, but possible, to change their minds. They can sometimes be defensive and a bit prickly due to attacks from Disbelievers.

4) I don't have a name for this group, but they are the ones who believe everything without much question. The Annunaki are here, our world leaders are reptilians, Greys are breeding hybrids for some unknown and probably nefarious purpose, the Nordics are having intimate relations with Billy, and some of the people you think you know are probably some flavor of alien in disguise. They know what they know, and you will never convince them. From their point of view, you are the fool not they because you can not see what is "really" going on.

In my opinion, groups one and four can only be tolerated with polite, if distant, courtesy. There is no point in trying to discuss or debate with them, and doing so will only frustrate and annoy you. The rest of us, groups 2 and 3, often find ourselves lumped together, willy-nilly, with group 1 or group 4, and pressured into defending or aligning with them without consciously realizing it. This is counterproductive and pits us against each other when we should find more in common with each other and be working together to find the truth.

If you know that you don't have all the answers, if you believe that you don't yet have all the facts and that you aren't possessed of the ultimate truth, then you are like me whether you label yourself skeptic or believer. We are able to seriously consider another's point of view, able to evaluate evidence objectively and consider information from "experts" who have knowledge we don't, and are willing to be convinced when logic and evidence are sufficient. We have much more in common than not, and if we would put aside our externally imposed differences, respect each other's points of view as we wish our own to be respected, and forget about labels, we can work together to find out what's "really going on."

Let's take down the fence, accept the fence sitters as friends and allies, and see if collectively we can find the truth we are all seeking here on ATS.

The ones and fours .. well, I say politely ignore them. All they do is encourage divisiveness, mistrust, and disrespect. Yes, they are human too and entitled to their opinions and beliefs, but their closed minds will not aid us in our quest, and their rhetoric only distracts us from our investigation and discussions.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 08:32 PM
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Seriously, both sides are to blame for the current state of affairs in ufology. For every "skeptic" who proclaims "Hoax! Hoax! Hoax!" to every photo or video posted, there is a "believer" proclaiming "Blossom said the federation of light is coming! She hears them in her head!". Neither extreme is likely to get along well with the other as they are polar opposites. One disbelieves without logical reason, just as the other believes without logical reason.

It's gotten to the point now, that a real honest to goodness ufo could land in my yard, aliens disembark, mutilate a cow, and reboard their craft and fly away all while being filmed by multiple sources; and when the video is posted here there would still be 100 people calling it a hoax because "nothing that looks that realistic could be real... it must be cgi.". On the other side, I'm equally certain I could draw a smiley face on my big toe, make a 5 minute video of me wiggling it at the camera, with a badly dubbed voice in the background stating how "The Intergalactic Federation of the Stinky Toe was coming to liberate all humans from their puppet overlords... but only if we all agree to wear sensible shoes.", and start a small cult.

Neither extreme helps the cause of ufology in any way whatsoever. But what really throws things into disarray, perpetuates childish arguments, and harms the cause of ufology more than anything else, are the people who perpetrate hoaxes. By hoaxing, they inflame both extremes to the point where they are at each other's throats, confuse the middle ground, and make a mockery of the movement as a whole, especially as we are perceived by the general public. As long as there is no penalty for these folks, things will just get worse.

Just my 2.5 cents.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 09:05 PM
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Faith, belief and opinion mean nothing, only FACTS count.

I'm 100% sure there is life out there in the universe way more advanced than us here on this little old rock in the middle of nowhere.

I don't like the vultures. The so called Ufologist's with books, and dvd's to sell you. They don't want the truth. They want the argument to carry on. As long as it does they keep lining their pockets.

Money comes first, truth second with these guys.



posted on Oct, 20 2008 @ 10:10 PM
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Since I "must read" your thread, I`d like to respond.

Originally posted by mc_squared



You're probably here because you "want to believe" right?


No, I am not here because I want to believe, I`m here because I believe.



Do you think every skeptic is here just to tear you down for that?


Not really, for one I`m not that important and I could care less what skeptics think. (After 15 years trying to learn about the subject I`m tired of people telling me how wrong I am.



Maybe some no-life jerk ones are - but I will bet you 99.997% of THE SKEPTICS on this board are here because on some level they also "want to" believe.


Like I said before I really don`t care about skeptics.




I mean come on - the Universe is this HUGE crazy-awesome place - do you honestly think anyone would really prefer we turn out to be the only ones around to wonder what we're doing in it?


Have you ever thought about the consequences of certitude of life outside this planet?. Yes many people would prefer for us to be the only ones.




Does anyone openly hope that interstellar travel is basically impossible because they like the idea of being stuck on this lonely rock forever??


See above.



Even the really cynical skeptics - they're still taking the time to read this board, must mean there's something about this subject that peaks their interest, right? Why would anyone waste their time following something they completely reject? I 100% don't believe in Unicorns. I spend 0% of my time on Unicorn message boards bashing others for their stupid Unicorn beliefs.


Have you ever heard of agendas?. People on this board work (or used to work) for such agencies as NASA. Never a straight answer.




So please understand - everyone, SKEPTICS AND BELIEVERS, all on some level would probably like to believe the same thing.


See above



Real skeptics are skeptical because they have to be. They understand how dangerous it is for anyone, including themselves, to believe in something simply because they want to. This is a particularly slippery slope when dealing with a subject as mysterious as UFOs:


Real skeptics?. How does one tell?. Have they some kind of title?.




When you do that - you begin to cherry-pick "facts". You irresponsibly jump to conclusions in the presence of something unexplainable. You become excited and quickly fill the gaps with your own beliefs rather than taking the time to evaluate all possible explanations. You begin to obfuscate the truth. And if you get carried away with it - that's when you make easy prey for all the hoaxers out there who recognize your desperate wanting and completely exploit it.


Anyone who has tried to study ufology has been exposed to hoaxes, only reserach can tell what is real from what is not.




And in case you haven't noticed - all of these problems exist and make UFOlogy the big convoluted mess you see today. Nobody even needs to cover up the truth anymore because we've done it all for them


You should have seen what it was like 10, 20 or 30 years ago. Thank God for the Internet.




So please stop preaching to each other about keeping your faith, because it's irrelevant. There's nothing wrong with believing but in the end it's not going to make your aliens show up - it didn't work on the 14th and it hasn't done squat for the last 60+ years.


Agreed.




What we need in UFOlogy is NOT more "believers" - we need grounded, critical thinkers. We need people who lend credibility to the idea of believing while stopping short of irreversibly committing to the act itself.


Maybe that is what you need. I certainly don`t.




If you truly have unwavering faith in UFOs then you shouldn't feel this constant need to validate your belief by having everyone else see things the way you do


See above.




If you really think the truth will one day come out then you don't need everyone else to think like you - you merely need to inspire them to think for themselves.


Agreed.



Please just think about this the next time you spend 10 pages arguing over some blurry Youtube video.



Don`t underestimate youtube videos, they are an excellent way to make believers out of skeptics.

Thanks for your post.




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