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Tags Matt Rouge , michael prescott , psychics

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Old 24th June 2017, 01:28 PM   #1
BillSkeptic
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Exclamation Matt Rouge on Why Skeptics will never accept the existence of psi

On Michael Prescott's blog one of his friends Matt Rouge wrote a piece "Why Skeptics will never accept the existence of psi".

Quote:
What I find interesting is that Skeptics will say that they have never experienced psi or anything paranormal in their entire lives, nor do they know anyone who has had such an experience. This is the furthest thing from my own world.

My guess is that, when most Skeptics imagine a psychic reading, they see a flaky if not creepy psychic sitting in a dimly lit den of fraud, receiving money with greedy fingers, then proceeding to cold- and hot-read the victim and pump him or her full of generalities, superfluities, and, of course, lies and false hope.

In contrast, I am a psychic with many psychic friends. I’ve given readings and gotten more than a few big hits. I’ve received readings and have witnessed more than a few big hits. To us, it’s nothing unusual, odd, or spooky. We trade psychic advice on virtually a daily basis, in fact. No special setting or mood is required; in fact, I give and receive most readings over Facebook these days. Further, I make no money off of psi at all (I give readings for free on a frequent basis, actually). About half of my psychic friends do charge for readings or other psi abilities, but they do a lot of pro bono as well, and absolutely no one is getting rich from these services. I can also observe that my psychic friends are extremely normal and down-to-earth, and none of them fits the stereotype of the New Age flake (OK, we mostly don’t fit that stereotype!). I can assert without equivocation that I have never heard a friend refer to doing anything psychic in a fraudulent or less than sincere way.

In short, psi works for us consistently and on certain occasions amazingly. What incentive would we have to make it a part of our lives if it didn’t? I’m not naÔve: Skeptics could certainly cite a range of potential psychological and sociological causes for such experiences. Those outside of our world are free to observe and judge for themselves. But my point is that psi isn’t just about the extreme and the strange. It can be an ordinary and consistently present part of one’s life.

Further, as the comments on Michael’s recent and excellent posts on Leslie Flint demonstrate, we who believe don’t believe everything (pace the Skeptics who enjoy portraying as credulous idiots. Crazy, too.). Yet, on the whole, I find reports of exceptional individual cases of psi to jibe with my own experience, and I think they are strong evidence for psi.

In conclusion

Based on my reading of psi laboratory research and exceptional cases of psi, as well as my own experience, I am 100% certain that psi is real and materialism is completely disproved and an obsolete worldview. Skeptics, however, will never be convinced.

If I am correct, that puts the unstoppable force of the truth of psi against the immovable object of the Skeptics’ belief system. What will be the end result of such an interaction?

I am going to go with a prediction that I have heard elsewhere and found convincing: Individual people and society as a whole will be convinced of the existence of the paranormal once someone is using it to make money. I don’t mean for readings but in the form of a process, product, or service that consistently works and that people want. At that point, the Skeptics will be forced to move, since money talks, and you-know-what walks. My guess is that 100 years will not pass without this happening, and it will probably happen much sooner than that.
Michael Prescott apparently bans most skeptics from commenting on his blog. Anyone want to take a stab at refuting Matt Rouge's claims about skeptics?

http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/m...ce-of-psi.html

For those who do not know who Michael Prescott is, he is an author of crime fiction but also known for his credulous acceptance of paranormal and pseudoscience topics.

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Michael_Prescott

Prescott believes in ectoplasm, demonic possession, "earthbound spirits" and reincarnation and has a history of defending fraudulent spiritualist mediums such as Eusapia Palladino.

Last edited by BillSkeptic; 24th June 2017 at 01:54 PM.
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Old 24th June 2017, 01:34 PM   #2
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What was the claim exactly?

Was it just this bit?
"Based on my reading of psi laboratory research and exceptional cases of psi, as well as my own experience, I am 100% certain that psi is real and materialism is completely disproved and an obsolete worldview. Skeptics, however, will never be convinced.'

That's a claim about his own opinion and the likely reaction from skeptics. I agree with it.

As far as using psi to make a buck, isn't that how the stock market works already?

Last edited by marplots; 24th June 2017 at 01:38 PM.
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Old 24th June 2017, 01:41 PM   #3
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Quote:
My guess is that, when most Skeptics imagine a psychic reading, they see a flaky if not creepy psychic sitting in a dimly lit den of fraud, receiving money with greedy fingers, then proceeding to cold- and hot-read the victim and pump him or her full of generalities, superfluities, and, of course, lies and false hope.
I don't imagine a dimly lit den, but everything else, yeah, pretty much.
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Old 24th June 2017, 01:44 PM   #4
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Well this statement is certainly not true.

Quote:
What I find interesting is that Skeptics will say that they have never experienced psi or anything paranormal in their entire lives, nor do they know anyone who has had such an experience. This is the furthest thing from my own world.
Firstly what skeptics? No examples are given. The statement is not accurate. Notable skeptics such as Chris French, Ray Hyman and John G. Taylor started out as believers in the paranormal. Hyman for example when he was younger was a genuine believer in palmistry until he realised later through experience with clients what was really going on via cold reading.

Hyman, Ray. (1976Ė77). Cold Reading: How to Convince Strangers That You Know All about Them. Zetetic 1(2):18Ė37.
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Old 24th June 2017, 01:46 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by marplots View Post
What was the claim exactly?

Was it just this bit?
"Based on my reading of psi laboratory research and exceptional cases of psi, as well as my own experience, I am 100% certain that psi is real and materialism is completely disproved and an obsolete worldview. Skeptics, however, will never be convinced.'

That's a claim about his own opinion and the likely reaction from skeptics. I agree with it.

As far as using psi to make a buck, isn't that how the stock market works already?
In the original piece he describes the discredited experiments of Daryl Bem, I am guessing this is the 'psi laboratory research' he is referring to. I will link to his piece. Sorry I had to get 15 posts until I could share links. I will update the OP.
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Old 24th June 2017, 02:04 PM   #6
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The business about others in the "psi culture" rings true. It is strikingly familiar to how a sense of religious community arises - believers tend to talk differently with other believers, using other language and self-validating terms. There's a different "normal" on offer, a different baseline.

I am most familiar with the US Christian culture, where phrases like these are understood:

"A heart burden"
"Called to service"
"Sanctified in Christ"
"Take it to the Lord"
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Old 24th June 2017, 02:46 PM   #7
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I agree I and most skeptics prefer the term PSIg ... indicating guage pressure, so as to take into account the ambient pre-existing air pressure.
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Old 24th June 2017, 02:58 PM   #8
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A response is simple: Prove it.
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Old 24th June 2017, 03:12 PM   #9
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Reproduce the phenomenon under controlled scientific conditions and I'd be helpless but to accept psi.

But these folks can't do that.
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Old 24th June 2017, 04:45 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Resume View Post
Reproduce the phenomenon under controlled scientific conditions and I'd be helpless but to accept psi.

But these folks can't do that.

That's because the Skeptics, like James Randi, use their sooper-seekrit psychic powers to sabotage the tests.
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Old 24th June 2017, 08:06 PM   #11
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Quote:
n short, psi works for us consistently and on certain occasions amazingly. What incentive would we have to make it a part of our lives if it didnít? Iím not naÔve: Skeptics could certainly cite a range of potential psychological and sociological causes for such experiences. Those outside of our world are free to observe and judge for themselves. But my point is that psi isnít just about the extreme and the strange. It can be an ordinary and consistently present part of oneís life.
If it works consistently then there should be no problem proving it under controlled conditions.
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Old 24th June 2017, 10:00 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by BillSkeptic View Post
Well this statement is certainly not true.
Indeed. Most sceptics have had experiences, and know people who have had experiences, which psi believers would attribute to psi. Sceptics just think they are wrong to do so, there being mundane explanations for all of them which are far more likely and plausible.
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Old 25th June 2017, 04:48 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Pixel42 View Post
Indeed. Most sceptics have had experiences, and know people who have had experiences, which psi believers would attribute to psi. Sceptics just think they are wrong to do so, there being mundane explanations for all of them which are far more likely and plausible.
It boils down to some people are more perceptive than others, that's all it is.

A great example would be police sketch artists, there are a few who just seem to nail a face they've never seen just by asking the right questions from witnesses. Then there are the salespeople who can accurately guess your dress shirt size by looking at you. Finally there are those annoying people who can play a song after hearing it only once.

Some folks are just sharper than everyone else, but it's not paranormal.
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Old 26th June 2017, 06:58 AM   #14
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There are so many things that, as a layman, I don't have a solid understanding of, have never done proper scientific testing for myself, and haven't read a great deal of research for. And I say that not as a naive idiot but as someone who has a passing interest in science and a decent level of education.

I have, for instance, almost no understanding of how anaesthesia works. Actually, I've spoken to medics about it and apparently it's not well understood at any level. Still, you're hard pressed to find anyone on here or elsewhere denying that anaesthesia works.

All I know is that a dentist stuck a needle and some liquid in my mouth and was then able to yank out a wisdom tooth with pliers and brute force without me feeling any pain. And that they can do that consistently. Yet, and this baffles me, it does, I've never heard a dentist say "Skeptics will never be convinced".

Edit: I'll go further. Dentists not only refuse to rely on "skeptics will never be convinced" but they also perform consistently and well enough to make a ton of money, have millions of people rely on them for help, build dental surgeries, dental hospitals even, fund research, sell products, teach new dentists to do the same and further the profession, and never have to say "Hey, some of my friends are dentists and they don't even make much out of it. Why would we lie?". They prefer to operate in the open and provide people access to all the required histories of data to validate themselves.

Last edited by Bladesman87; 26th June 2017 at 07:04 AM.
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Old 26th June 2017, 07:24 AM   #15
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He gets one thing right, I think:

Quote:
I am going to go with a prediction that I have heard elsewhere and found convincing: Individual people and society as a whole will be convinced of the existence of the paranormal once someone is using it to make money. I donít mean for readings but in the form of a process, product, or service that consistently works and that people want.
If the existence of something that some people call "the paranormal" is to be established, as with anything else, it needs to be testable, and one extremely effective way of testing things is to note that a product based on them actually, reproducibly, reliably works. I don't need to argue whether my vacuum cleaner picks up dirt, or speculate on how vacuum-cleaner skeptics have simply been unfortunate enough to live lives in which they've never personally witnessed the miracle of the vacuum cleaner; I don't need to argue that all my vacuum-cleaner-using friends can exchange anecdotes about how effective their vacuum cleaners are at cleaning their carpets, and how they're really, honestly not fraudulent or misleading; I simply turn the thing on and it picks up dirt, and nobody [1] expresses significant doubt about its existence as a concept. And so, in support of this moment of clarity (I'll gently gloss over Rouge's use of the word "when" in place of the more accurate "if and only if") and of the "There's an XKCD cartoon for every thread" principle, I'll add the following, XKCD 808:



Dave
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Old 28th June 2017, 07:50 AM   #16
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For me, anyway, skepticism isn't a belief; it's an approach. It is completely wrongheaded to say that "skeptics" haven't experienced things that might be considered paranormal or psi. The thing is, I don't jump to a conclusion that it's paranormal. That door that just closed itself when no one else was in the house? Not a ghost; more likely, the A/C just kicked on and created enough pressure change to close the door.

I'll repeat what I said in another thread, which is along the same lines of what Dave Rogers said above: if there was a such thing as Psi powers that allowed you to get information about what people are thinking or feeling, why aren't all these psychics making a killing in poker rooms and casinos? If they can psychically read details about a person's past and future, surely they can glean enough to determine their opponents' poker cards or at least their general feelings about their cards. At blackjack, they could determine what the dealer's hidden card is. If they see the future, they could see what Roulette/Craps numbers were most likely to come up next -even if they could only be accurate 10% of the time it would be enough to totally destroy the house edge. I would expect that if psi were real, and there was this big Psychic Friends Network out there, casinos wouldn't be able to operate.

We already see it happen with people who are mathematically gifted and have found exploits; why wouldn't the Psychic Friends Network pull the same move?
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Old 28th June 2017, 09:29 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
If they can psychically read details about a person's past and future, surely they can glean enough to determine their opponents' poker cards or at least their general feelings about their cards. At blackjack, they could determine what the dealer's hidden card is. If they see the future, they could see what Roulette/Craps numbers were most likely to come up next -even if they could only be accurate 10% of the time it would be enough to totally destroy the house edge.
Exactly. It's been said that the economy of Monaco is founded on the principle of paying out 26:1 on odds of 27:1. That's how small an edge you need to get unimaginably rich.

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Old 28th June 2017, 10:00 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
For me, anyway, skepticism isn't a belief; it's an approach. It is completely wrongheaded to say that "skeptics" haven't experienced things that might be considered paranormal or psi. The thing is, I don't jump to a conclusion that it's paranormal. That door that just closed itself when no one else was in the house? Not a ghost; more likely, the A/C just kicked on and created enough pressure change to close the door.

I'll repeat what I said in another thread, which is along the same lines of what Dave Rogers said above: if there was a such thing as Psi powers that allowed you to get information about what people are thinking or feeling, why aren't all these psychics making a killing in poker rooms and casinos? If they can psychically read details about a person's past and future, surely they can glean enough to determine their opponents' poker cards or at least their general feelings about their cards. At blackjack, they could determine what the dealer's hidden card is. If they see the future, they could see what Roulette/Craps numbers were most likely to come up next -even if they could only be accurate 10% of the time it would be enough to totally destroy the house edge. I would expect that if psi were real, and there was this big Psychic Friends Network out there, casinos wouldn't be able to operate.

We already see it happen with people who are mathematically gifted and have found exploits; why wouldn't the Psychic Friends Network pull the same move?
Determining other players' "general feelings about their cards" is an important aspect of playing poker. However, poker players use things like facial expression and body language ("tells" in poker-speak) to try read whether a player is bluffing or really has a good hand.
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Old 28th June 2017, 10:18 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
For me, anyway, skepticism isn't a belief; it's an approach. It is completely wrongheaded to say that "skeptics" haven't experienced things that might be considered paranormal or psi. The thing is, I don't jump to a conclusion that it's paranormal. That door that just closed itself when no one else was in the house? Not a ghost; more likely, the A/C just kicked on and created enough pressure change to close the door.

I'll repeat what I said in another thread, which is along the same lines of what Dave Rogers said above: if there was a such thing as Psi powers that allowed you to get information about what people are thinking or feeling, why aren't all these psychics making a killing in poker rooms and casinos? If they can psychically read details about a person's past and future, surely they can glean enough to determine their opponents' poker cards or at least their general feelings about their cards. At blackjack, they could determine what the dealer's hidden card is. If they see the future, they could see what Roulette/Craps numbers were most likely to come up next -even if they could only be accurate 10% of the time it would be enough to totally destroy the house edge. I would expect that if psi were real, and there was this big Psychic Friends Network out there, casinos wouldn't be able to operate.

We already see it happen with people who are mathematically gifted and have found exploits; why wouldn't the Psychic Friends Network pull the same move?
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.

I have said, a number of times that the spirit world gave me a five number win
on the lottery in 1998 and they did it by telepathically guiding me to pick the numbers. But they only gave me five numbers not six, because to make me rich at someone else's expense would have been bad karma. They gave me only enough to buy a computer, which I could not afford at the time.

A female voice told me I had won, one hour before the draw. It has never spoken to me since. The spirit world are not allowed to directly interfere in human affairs in more than token ways. But I believe they are allowed to inspire people with telepathy that the person probably does not even realize is coming from outside themselves.

Skeptics look for proof of psychic powers, but do not take into account spiritual philosophy, which is that we incarnate to grow and evolve by free will, and trial and error. We are not meant to see through the veil to higher worlds until we have evolved enough to deal with it. If just anyone could access psychic powers they would use it for their own ends and we would be having psychic wars as well as physical ones.

The spirit world teaches that we reincarnate until achieving a state of grace, and the human race is far from that, so we will not be seeing proof of the existence of higher worlds any time soon.
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Old 28th June 2017, 10:28 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.
People are people. If psychic ability were real, there would be a proportional amount of folks willing to take the bad karma risk and use the power to acquire wealth. As xjx388 pointed out, that would pretty much **** casinos and the stock market as well. Your special pleading fails.
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Old 28th June 2017, 10:39 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.
So are you saying that those who claim to have psychic abilities are of a higher moral/ethical fibre than we more mundane folk? BTW, where can I get a definitive list of these "spiritual laws"?
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Old 28th June 2017, 10:41 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post
It boils down to some people are more perceptive than others, that's all it is.

A great example would be police sketch artists, there are a few who just seem to nail a face they've never seen just by asking the right questions from witnesses. Then there are the salespeople who can accurately guess your dress shirt size by looking at you. Finally there are those annoying people who can play a song after hearing it only once.

Some folks are just sharper than everyone else, but it's not paranormal.
Ha. I have my very own example. My 14 yo daughter can play back anything on a variety of instruments after a single hearing. How does she do that? I have no idea. Just gifted in that way, I suppose. She is already formally qualified to be a music teacher, but legally cannot do so until she is 16.
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Old 28th June 2017, 10:47 AM   #23
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Indeed .. I too always had problems with PSI. Damn Americans, you're no imperium, get your units straight. Let's try it ..

Matt Rouge on Why Skeptics will never accept the existence of 6894.76Pa.

Wasn't so hard, was it ..
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Old 28th June 2017, 11:15 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.
That argument doesn't really fly though. It's bad karma to use any "gift" for personal gain. Plus, you have to prove that karma is a thing, too. This is the nature of all too many psi-supportive arguments -basically the Holy Grail argument: You can't use psi unless the spiritual and physical conditions are just right.

Of course, this also fails to consider the fact that most people who purport to have powers use it for personal gain . . . mediums, performers, etc.

Quote:
I have said, a number of times that the spirit world gave me a five number win on the lottery in 1998 and they did it by telepathically guiding me to pick the numbers. But they only gave me five numbers not six, because to make me rich at someone else's expense would have been bad karma. They gave me only enough to buy a computer, which I could not afford at the time.
There are plenty of examples of people who say they hit the big win (even several times) based on paranormal guidance: they dreamed it, voices told them, etc. Why wasn't it bad karma for them to win but it would be bad karma for you?

Quote:
A female voice told me I had won, one hour before the draw. It has never spoken to me since. The spirit world are not allowed to directly interfere in human affairs in more than token ways. But I believe they are allowed to inspire people with telepathy that the person probably does not even realize is coming from outside themselves.
What you say here is totally unverifiable. I don't doubt your sincerity but, then again, I don't know you. What you have here is basically your beliefs. There is no way to confirm that there is some entity or entities which exercise control over what the spirit world is allowed to do.

Quote:
Skeptics look for proof of psychic powers, but do not take into account spiritual philosophy, which is that we incarnate to grow and evolve by free will, and trial and error. We are not meant to see through the veil to higher worlds until we have evolved enough to deal with it. If just anyone could access psychic powers they would use it for their own ends and we would be having psychic wars as well as physical ones.
Yet, many people claim to be able to access psychic powers. You just did a couple of paragraphs ago. So you are kind of contradicting yourself. You acknowledge that humans will abuse psychic powers (psychic wars) but also that they have psychic powers but aren't able to abuse them because of karmic law.

And if you acknowledge that humans will be able to abuse psychic powers and that they currently have them, then you haven't really rebutted my point: if powers were real, humans would abuse them because that's what we do.

Quote:
The spirit world teaches that we reincarnate until achieving a state of grace, and the human race is far from that, so we will not be seeing proof of the existence of higher worlds any time soon.
Except of course that female voice who told you lottery numbers so you could buy a computer . . .
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Old 28th June 2017, 11:22 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
Ha. I have my very own example. My 14 yo daughter can play back anything on a variety of instruments after a single hearing. How does she do that? I have no idea. Just gifted in that way, I suppose. She is already formally qualified to be a music teacher, but legally cannot do so until she is 16.
I can listen to just about any piece (more than once, so I'm not THAT good!) and reproduce it pretty spot on, despite the fact that I can't read music or have any formal training. There are people who use their minds in incredible but perfectly normal ways. No idea why it is this way but I'm not positing any weird phenomena to explain it. I don't believe I'm channeling Jimi Hendrix, even though I can play him pretty well. My brain just processes music information really well.

For me, Skepticism is simply not jumping to wild conclusions to explain something I don't quite understand. My default position is: I don't understand this but it probably isn't some paranormal thing.
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Old 28th June 2017, 03:00 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.
True story (such as it is):

My grandmother and her two sisters had great intuition, and every August they would travel to the family cabin at Lake Tahoe, and spend the evenings at the casinos for a week to make money for the Christmas holidays. They did this every year from the late 1950s until 1979.

They averaged $3,500 each in take-home winnings.

One aunt was good a Kino, and Roulette, the other was deadly at Black Jack, and my Grandmother won big on the dollar slots. If any of the family pressed them they would tell them they were psychic, and that was the official family line for decades.

Later, after her two sisters had passed away, Grandma spilled the beans. Kino and Roulette are just about playing the percentages, and if you bet wisely you can win as long as you know when to quit. Black Jack?...Well we all know what my other Aunt was doing, and she was also smart enough not to win too big on any single night as to draw attention.

Grandma's secret with the slots?

Stroll through the rows of machines checking the tops of the stools for the warm ones. Warm means someone was just sitting there, and the odds are a little better.

For the record, I have never lost money in Vegas or Tahoe. Never got rich, but always managed to leave town with more money than I arrived with, and paid for lots of fun while I was there.

Telling someone you're psychic shuts them up, and keeps your gambling secrets secret.
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Old 28th June 2017, 04:06 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by CORed View Post
Determining other players' "general feelings about their cards" is an important aspect of playing poker. However, poker players use things like facial expression and body language ("tells" in poker-speak) to try read whether a player is bluffing or really has a good hand.
In my experience, physical tells are hugely overrated. Partly because most players are trying to hide them, and mostly because most physical tells are related to nervousness/excitement and people get just as anxious about big hands as big bluffs. It's not that common to find players with reliable physical tells and they are never as reliable as betting patterns and hand history.

Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.
See, this is silly to me. If you want to say that it's unethical to make vast sums of wealth off of it then that's one thing, but psychics (if they exist) have to eat. Doctors, for instance, have knowledge and ability that is regularly the difference between life and death and nobody looks down on them for making money off of it. Instead, what many doctors (or a national health service) aim for, is to attempt to provide affordable and widespread service while making a reasonable living for themselves. Doctors operate in the open, sharing research, data, education, and so on.

Fine, if psychics are all left-leaning politically and don't believe in exploiting the masses for huge sums of money, but that doesn't explain why they don't provide the basic openness to validate their field.

Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post
True story (such as it is):

My grandmother and her two sisters had great intuition, and every August they would travel to the family cabin at Lake Tahoe, and spend the evenings at the casinos for a week to make money for the Christmas holidays. They did this every year from the late 1950s until 1979.

They averaged $3,500 each in take-home winnings.

One aunt was good a Kino, and Roulette, the other was deadly at Black Jack, and my Grandmother won big on the dollar slots. If any of the family pressed them they would tell them they were psychic, and that was the official family line for decades.

Later, after her two sisters had passed away, Grandma spilled the beans. Kino and Roulette are just about playing the percentages, and if you bet wisely you can win as long as you know when to quit. Black Jack?...Well we all know what my other Aunt was doing, and she was also smart enough not to win too big on any single night as to draw attention.

Grandma's secret with the slots?

Stroll through the rows of machines checking the tops of the stools for the warm ones. Warm means someone was just sitting there, and the odds are a little better.

For the record, I have never lost money in Vegas or Tahoe. Never got rich, but always managed to leave town with more money than I arrived with, and paid for lots of fun while I was there.

Telling someone you're psychic shuts them up, and keeps your gambling secrets secret.
A couple of things here. One is that self-reporting of gambling winnings is notoriously unreliable. The other is that you might just be under-estimating the statistical variance in gambling. When edges are small, running well can happen over thousands of hands or spins. Depending on accuracy, stakes, and time spent gaming, this isn't even that impressive. Actually, what keeps people coming back to casinos is that not everyone is a loser. If there weren't people out there who had tales of how they beat the house then they'd die out soon enough.

Looking for warm seats, as in your example, is mere superstition. The machines pay out a given % over time. That they haven't paid out for a while doesn't make them more likely to pay out next time. That's what is known, unsurprisingly, as the gambler's fallacy.
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Old 28th June 2017, 06:57 PM   #28
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No need for tells .. there is scientific, mathematically proven, reliable way, how to make money on these games. Own the casino.
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Old 28th June 2017, 07:02 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
No need for tells .. there is scientific, mathematically proven, reliable way, how to make money on these games. Own the casino.
Unless you're Donald Trump.
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Old 28th June 2017, 10:54 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Bladesman87 View Post
A couple of things here. One is that self-reporting of gambling winnings is notoriously unreliable. The other is that you might just be under-estimating the statistical variance in gambling. When edges are small, running well can happen over thousands of hands or spins. Depending on accuracy, stakes, and time spent gaming, this isn't even that impressive. Actually, what keeps people coming back to casinos is that not everyone is a loser. If there weren't people out there who had tales of how they beat the house then they'd die out soon enough.

Looking for warm seats, as in your example, is mere superstition. The machines pay out a given % over time. That they haven't paid out for a while doesn't make them more likely to pay out next time. That's what is known, unsurprisingly, as the gambler's fallacy.
And yet it all worked consistently. Card-counting without getting caught is harder today than back then.

For the record, I've never lost money on slots...
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Old 28th June 2017, 11:59 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain....
Hogwash.

"Psychics" are invariably rip-off artists with no morals and all too ready to gain wealth by deceptively claiming powers.

Examples that disprove your assertion - Sylvia Browne, Uri Geller to name two -
here's another 13.
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Old 29th June 2017, 03:26 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics.
That may be so, but how do find out what they say? Can two different psychics agree on the laws?

To me it sounds like the "law" that you should not gain on your psychic powers is an invention that conveniently covers why only frauds actually make money on "psychic" powers. If you used your psychic powers to gain money for charity, would that still fall foul of this "law"?

Apparently there are also a "law" that psychic powers will fail if tested. Again, it sounds rather like an invention to avoid getting busted by the test.

Do you know of other spiritual laws?
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Old 29th June 2017, 03:30 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
Most psychic people are aware it is wrong to use psychic powers to gain wealth. There are spiritual laws as well as laws of physics. It is bad karma to abuse psychic powers for personal gain.

I have said, a number of times that the spirit world gave me a five number win
on the lottery in 1998 and they did it by telepathically guiding me to pick the numbers. But they only gave me five numbers not six, because to make me rich at someone else's expense would have been bad karma. They gave me only enough to buy a computer, which I could not afford at the time.

A female voice told me I had won, one hour before the draw. It has never spoken to me since. The spirit world are not allowed to directly interfere in human affairs in more than token ways. But I believe they are allowed to inspire people with telepathy that the person probably does not even realize is coming from outside themselves.

Skeptics look for proof of psychic powers, but do not take into account spiritual philosophy, which is that we incarnate to grow and evolve by free will, and trial and error. We are not meant to see through the veil to higher worlds until we have evolved enough to deal with it. If just anyone could access psychic powers they would use it for their own ends and we would be having psychic wars as well as physical ones.

The spirit world teaches that we reincarnate until achieving a state of grace, and the human race is far from that, so we will not be seeing proof of the existence of higher worlds any time soon.
Whom wrote those laws? How do you know people didn't make up those laws as reasons to explain why they didnt win? You don't know. Whom would have suffered if you were given the 6th ball number? Why would they suffer. Plenty of persons have won large amounts of money playing the lottery. Why is it wrong for folks to use psychic powers to make their lives better. Remember persons with all manner of non psychic abilities use those abilities to better their lives. As someone pointed out this argument you've made to put it politely is special pleading in common parlance it's called whinning excuse making. It's also an appeal to emotion argument which is the poorest way to present your position on this forum.

Last edited by Steve001; 29th June 2017 at 03:34 AM.
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Old 29th June 2017, 07:26 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
No need for tells .. there is scientific, mathematically proven, reliable way, how to make money on these games. Own the casino.
Poker specifically can be profitable for the player too as it's not played against the house. What the house does is take a "rake" either from each hand where the pot exceeds a certain threshold or by charging players a fixed sum per hour played. Although, even for a skilled player, there are some poker games for which it's impossible or impractical for your win rate to exceed the rake.

Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post
And yet it all worked consistently. Card-counting without getting caught is harder today than back then.

For the record, I've never lost money on slots...
Well, I suspect your basis for it having worked consistently is less than scientific. Your slots strategy is demonstrably ineffective, so if you're up then thank variance.
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Old 29th June 2017, 07:55 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
Indeed .. I too always had problems with PSI. Damn Americans, you're no imperium, get your units straight. Let's try it ..

Matt Rouge on Why Skeptics will never accept the existence of 6894.76Pa.

Wasn't so hard, was it ..
And should you trust anyone who can't spell Rogue?
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Old 29th June 2017, 08:29 PM   #36
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Quote:
I am going to go with a prediction that I have heard elsewhere and found convincing: Individual people and society as a whole will be convinced of the existence of the paranormal once someone is using it to make money. I don’t mean for readings but in the form of a process, product, or service that consistently works and that people want.
If psi was a real thing and worked consistently like he says then this would already be true. It would already be effectively monetized. People don't have to believe in or understand the mechanism by which a product or service works in order to recognize it as something worth spending money on.
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Old 3rd July 2017, 05:53 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by marplots View Post
The business about others in the "psi culture" rings true. It is strikingly familiar to how a sense of religious community arises - believers tend to talk differently with other believers, using other language and self-validating terms. There's a different "normal" on offer, a different baseline.

I am most familiar with the US Christian culture, where phrases like these are understood:

"A heart burden"
"Called to service"
"Sanctified in Christ"
"Take it to the Lord"
"Put it right up in Jesus!"
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Old 5th July 2017, 09:56 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by BillSkeptic View Post
On Michael Prescott's blog one of his friends Matt Rouge wrote a piece "Why Skeptics will never accept the existence of psi".
Michael Prescott apparently bans most skeptics from commenting on his blog. Anyone want to take a stab at refuting Matt Rouge's claims about skeptics?

http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/m...ce-of-psi.html
From the piece (my highlighting):
"In contrast, I am a psychic with many psychic friends. Iíve given readings and gotten more than a few big hits. Iíve received readings and have witnessed more than a few big hits. To us, itís nothing unusual, odd, or spooky. We trade psychic advice on virtually a daily basis, in fact. No special setting or mood is required; in fact, I give and receive most readings over Facebook these days. Further, I make no money off of psi at all (I give readings for free on a frequent basis, actually). About half of my psychic friends do charge for readings or other psi abilities, but they do a lot of pro bono as well, and absolutely no one is getting rich from these services. I can also observe that my psychic friends are extremely normal and down-to-earth, and none of them fits the stereotype of the New Age flake (OK, we mostly donít fit that stereotype!). I can assert without equivocation that I have never heard a friend refer to doing anything psychic in a fraudulent or less than sincere way.

In short, psi works for us consistently and on certain occasions amazingly. What incentive would we have to make it a part of our lives if it didnít? Iím not naÔve: Skeptics could certainly cite a range of potential psychological and sociological causes for such experiences. Those outside of our world are free to observe and judge for themselves. But my point is that psi isnít just about the extreme and the strange. It can be an ordinary and consistently present part of oneís life."

So he and his friends give readings "frequently" and "on a daily basis", and they experience only "more than a few big hits".
Of course these are vague numbers. A few is typically less than three, but what exactly is "more than a few"?
Also, what is considered "big", or "amazing"?
I am going to suggest that a lot of predictions are being made "frequently" on "a daily basis", and that a few of these are, coincidentally, not entirely wrong. If one's mental preset is "hey this works!", then one is primed to accept a wide variety of coincidences as "big hits". Specific examples of "hits", together with a comprehensive list of all attempts would be required to establish the veracity of this claim.

This low rate of success is apparently viewed by the believers as "works for us consistently". I guess "consistently" in this case is a steady low rate of success probably not different than chance coincidence.

The difficulty is that the believers are not willing to consider the role of chance and coincidence in their lives, but prefer to believe fantasy tales of supernatural intervention and spiritual connectedness. It is exactly the same problem which keeps the religious convinced that prayer works. So I would say the author of the above is perhaps not entirely naive, but rather has a poor understanding of the role of chance and coincidence in his, and his psychic friends' lives.

The fact that half of his friends do in fact charge for readings, and that they consider themselves to have consistent and successful psychic powers, would indicate that whatever "spiritual laws" there may be, they do not preclude turning a profit on ones work. They do not consider themselves to be cheating their clients because they actually believe their readings are of value. So, whats to stop someone from using these powers in a casino?
They could make a lot of money and give it to the charity of their choice.
Such powers could certainly be used in law enforcement, if they gave consistent results.
The fact is that psi does not give consistent results because it is based on chance coincidence, and statistical anomalies, and that is why we will not see it used to the advantage of human kind at any time, let alone within the century.

Of course I would be happy to be proven wrong!
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Old 5th July 2017, 10:17 AM   #39
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It is the "psi works for us consistently" bit that is the bugaboo. This is trotted out only for the believers or fence-sitters, and it is quietly retreated from when a skeptic points out that anything that works consistently can be tested. And that is before mentioning that the conclusion of consistency implies that testing (or at the very least stringent record keeping) has already been done by the claimant.
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Old 5th July 2017, 01:06 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Garrette View Post
It is the "psi works for us consistently" bit that is the bugaboo. This is trotted out only for the believers or fence-sitters, and it is quietly retreated from when a skeptic points out that anything that works consistently can be tested. And that is before mentioning that the conclusion of consistency implies that testing (or at the very least stringent record keeping) has already been done by the claimant.
"can be tested" doesn't equal "had been tested". It is possible there are people with consistent psychic powers who simply don't want to be tested.
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