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Tags "The Poltergeist" , poltergeists , William Roll

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Old 8th October 2012, 05:31 PM   #81
I Ratant
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Originally Posted by Pixel42 View Post
How many volcanoes do I need to personally look inside before I can safely say volcano gods don't exist?
.
All of them plus one.
It's like "transitional fossils"... find one, and then there's two more needed, one on each side of the new one.
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Old 8th October 2012, 05:37 PM   #82
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The very, very BEST evidence for poltergeists, the top-of-the-line, grade-A confirmation of their existence, is sadly insufficient.

It's all relative.
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Old 8th October 2012, 06:07 PM   #83
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There is a lot to reply to, so I'll be as succint as possible.

Originally Posted by GeeMack View Post
With a murder, there's a dead person, or at the very least a person who was once objectively known to be alive.
And with a poltergesit, there is a claim that a spoon flew through the air. The witness either percieved it perfectly, percieved it improperly, or did not percieve it at all AKA lied.

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No, we can't. You who may believe in the existence of poltergeists can, but you're not using the scientific method. When it comes to explaining the universe we live in, your method is bound to result in failure.
Yes, I am not using the scientific method. I never said I was. What I'm doing is more akin to philosophy. I'm looking for the best explanation for a series of data. Either the explanation is normal or paranormal. Deciding between different paranormal explainations is a seprate issue. All I care about is whether they are natural or not.

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You might. But you still should start from the null hypothesis, which is that all alleged poltergeist phenomena come about by purely natural causes.
I think of it as a probability spectrum. The null hypothesis is the hypothesis given the most weight, due to its past history of success. Its also assumed if the results are inconclusive. That's it. We still go through a process, where we judge each hypothesis, and determine which one is best, and the null hypothesis still faces the possibility of being wrong. I am unaware of a single prominent skeptic that does not follow this process. Nickell, Wiseman, French, Hyman etc never refuse to put the paranormal explanation on the table, ever. They tip the balance towards the null hypothesis, and rightly too, in my opinion.

Another issue, which I keep repeating, is that skeptics do not need to account for everything, or read every book on the subject. I never, EVER discredited whatever books you've read on them. I dont even know what you've read.

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You're leaping to the conclusion that just because the poltergeist phenomena was not attributed to some known natural cause, it should be pursued as if it's caused by magical powers. And that is the source of your continued failure.
No I am not. You are uncharitably reading me. I said if we might. It is purely hypothetical. If there were somehow 1 million poltergeist cases involving massive amounts of testimony, yet not a single piece of "objective", non testimonial evidence (video, etc), I'd probably believe something paranormal was going on. This is hypothetical. It's to demonstrate that you are willing to be proven wrong. I am.

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No proponent of creationism is any better authority on the issue than any other since creationism relies on magical powers and no magical powers have ever been objectively shown to exist. Your analogy fails again.
This is a joke right? Surely your world isn't so black and white.

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Correct. Any other way of looking at it would be special pleading, a logical fallacy, and dishonest.
Haven't you ever read an essay in philosophy of religion? No, there is no logical reason why a proposition has to fit within the scientific method. Logically speaking, everyone else might all not even exist. And what about properly basic beliefs?

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Obviously. But the skeptics here are trying to help you understand where the errors are in your thinking.
Thanks.

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Yes, if magic is real then things that allegedly occur due to magic might really be real, too.
Yes. That is why science does not a priori rule out paranormal explainations. Read an essay on miracles from a philosopher of religion.

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Review the thread and you'll probably see how those repeated requests for objective evidence tend to follow your comments suggesting that there is some. Your inability to offer any while asking that alleged poltergeist phenomena be given special privileges is noted. It's not honest to try to avoid the scrutiny of the scientific method.
If you keep asking for evidence, you might not notice me offering it to you. I suggested Roll's book, and linked to an article with two fairly interesting cases (CTRL + F case 4 and 5). At any rate, I did not come here to convince you all that poltergeists are real. I dont believe they are at the moment. I came here to discuss the evidence for them. I came to see if anyone was familiar with the most prominent parapcyhologists, like Roll. I was and still am curious.

Originally Posted by Stray Cat View Post
No you can't.
Otherwise it is also evidence that invisible pink unicorns sometimes carry visible objects in their mouths, or any other infinite number of unsupported nonsense.
The label poltergeist refers to the symptoms, not the cause. Parapychologists only argue that they aren't the result of natural processes. At any rate, my interest is in whether they can be explained naturally, not what kind of woo they are.

Hypothesis are normally understood as frameworks that explain the data and that are falsifiable. This doesnt extend to woo land. Paranormal explainations are unfalsifiable. They cannot be taken off the table, no matter what. All we can do is properly burden them with the burden of proof. Its what virtually every prominent skeptic does. Haven't you read an article from PSICOP?

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At the very most, it is evidence that someone thinks an object flew on it's own. It doesn't point to any cause or mechanism for what made the object fly.... How can you not understand this?
Exactly! It does say absolutely nothing about the cause or mechanism of the event.

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Again no.
Looking at disparate cases and presuming a common cause is not scientific... especially when that 'cause' (in this case poltergeists) has never been objectively shown to exist.
I can't think of many skeptics that would say there is a common cause to the phenomena. Most think it is a combination of pyschological causes and fraud. Parapsychologists might differ as well. Again, the term poltergeist is attributed to the symptoms of the phenomena, not the cause.

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No one is asking you to do that.
Give us one example of the best poltergeist case you know of.
Just the name of the case, a date some basic information will do.
There are some excellent researchers on this forum who will do the rest
Who are these excellent researchers? I would like to get into contact with them. I would very much like to know the skeptical history of poltergeists, and afterlife research in general.
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Old 8th October 2012, 06:22 PM   #84
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This whole thing has gone way off track. I just wanted to if anyone had read "the poltergeist", or any other prominent parapcyhological book (s) on poltergeists. I didn't like the idea of having to do an investigation from the ground up, like baron did, involving interviewing witnesses and whatnot. I am a busy guy, being a student and all. I wanted to see if anyone had already done stuff like that to save me time, and if I could see the results. I can't say I have any particular cases in mind- rather, I have a bunch of symptoms that are reoccurring in poltergeist cases that I'd like to be able to explain. One of them is the ocurrance of apparitions to multiple witnesses. Another is how objects can seemingly fly across the room while within sight. Another is why objects appear to move crookedly. These are just a few examples.

Often times, the explanation is a physical aspect of the environment. For example, someone may have seen a mirror reflection, or may have been looking at an object so it only appeared to levitate. There may also be bad piping or something that causes strange sounds. I was hoping someone who had read these books would know what kinds of symptoms fequently occur, and what naturalistic explanations tend to be used for them.

Last edited by Andyman409; 8th October 2012 at 07:05 PM.
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Old 8th October 2012, 07:09 PM   #85
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
And with a poltergesit, there is a claim that a spoon flew through the air. The witness either percieved it perfectly, percieved it improperly, or did not percieve it at all AKA lied.

The fact that you cannot see a difference between a claim that a spoon flew through the air and an actual bona fide dead body speaks directly to your failure to understand pretty much anything anyone has been trying to tell you.

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Yes, I am not using the scientific method. I never said I was. What I'm doing is more akin to philosophy. I'm looking for the best explanation for a series of data. Either the explanation is normal or paranormal. Deciding between different paranormal explainations is a seprate issue. All I care about is whether they are natural or not.

What you're doing is attempting to give poltergeist phenomena special status. And you're doing it in order to avoid subjecting it to scientific scrutiny. You want it to be real, and you're resorting to desperate dishonesty in order to claim a place in the realm of reality for something that exists only in the realm of fantasy.

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I think of it as a probability spectrum. The null hypothesis is the hypothesis given the most weight, due to its past history of success. Its also assumed if the results are inconclusive. That's it.

No. The null hypothesis is where you start when trying to support a claim about the universe we live in. It is the position that you must falsify to demonstrate that the claim is true. In the case of the claim that poltergeist effects are something other than mundane, the null hypothesis is that all alleged poltergeist phenomena come about by purely natural causes.

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We still go through a process, where we judge each hypothesis, and determine which one is best, and the null hypothesis still faces the possibility of being wrong.

The null hypothesis will only be demonstrated to be wrong when you bring in the objective evidence that falsifies it. That's how it is designed, according to the scientific method, the only reliable way we have ever had to explain the universe we live in. Your continued protestations will not change that.

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I am unaware of a single prominent skeptic that does not follow this process. Nickell, Wiseman, French, Hyman etc never refuse to put the paranormal explanation on the table, ever. They tip the balance towards the null hypothesis, and rightly too, in my opinion.

It's the scientific method. They start with the null hypothesis that all alleged poltergeist phenomena come about by purely natural causes. If you can't falsify it, it stands.

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Another issue, which I keep repeating, is that skeptics do not need to account for everything, or read every book on the subject. I never, EVER discredited whatever books you've read on them. I dont even know what you've read.

[...]

No I am not. You are uncharitably reading me. I said if we might. It is purely hypothetical. If there were somehow 1 million poltergeist cases involving massive amounts of testimony, yet not a single piece of "objective", non testimonial evidence (video, etc), I'd probably believe something paranormal was going on.

Then you'd be abandoning critical thinking in favor of belief in an unevidenced claim. That continued failure on your part is what everyone here has been trying to help you understand, your steadfast resistance notwithstanding.

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This is hypothetical. It's to demonstrate that you are willing to be proven wrong. I am.

We start with the null hypothesis as I've described several times. Prove it wrong.

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Originally Posted by GeeMack View Post
No proponent of creationism is any better authority on the issue than any other since creationism relies on magical powers and no magical powers have ever been objectively shown to exist. Your analogy fails again.

This is a joke right? Surely your world isn't so black and white.

No, it's not a joke at all. Creationism is the silly notion that the origin of and variety of species on Earth came about through an act of magic. And since nobody is any more or less knowledgeable than anyone else on the subject of creating things by magic, no proponent of creationism is any better authority on the issue than any other.

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Haven't you ever read an essay in philosophy of religion? No, there is no logical reason why a proposition has to fit within the scientific method. Logically speaking, everyone else might all not even exist. And what about properly basic beliefs?

Sure, if magic is real then things that allegedly occur due to magic might really be real, too. We have no rational reason to believe magic is real, and since magic being real doesn't help us the tiniest bit in explaining the universe we live in, it's all just a kids' exercise in what-if.

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Yes. That is why science does not a priori rule out paranormal explainations. Read an essay on miracles from a philosopher of religion.

This isn't about religion and philosophy. Your dishonest attempt to weasel away from a reality based discussion is noted. There is another area of this forum to take that sort of thing.

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If you keep asking for evidence, you might not notice me offering it to you.

Quite obviously not, yet you continue to suggest that poltergeists existing and poltergeists not existing are both subject to the same burden of proof. You also keep insisting that somehow claims of magical powers shouldn't be subject to the same scientific rigor as every other claim made about this thing we call reality. On both counts you have been and will continue to be flat out wrong.

Last edited by GeeMack; 8th October 2012 at 07:41 PM. Reason: Grammar.
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Old 8th October 2012, 07:45 PM   #86
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Geemack, If you aren't going to read what I've said, don't even bother responding to me. It is enormously clear that you have never read an essay on the philosophy of miracles. It is also apparant that you think I'm a paranormal believer who wants to give the paranormal hypothesis special treatment, despite my protestations to the contrary. Whatever. This conversation was over a long time ago. Now we're just listening to each others echo.
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Old 8th October 2012, 07:48 PM   #87
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
And with a poltergesit, there is a claim that a spoon flew through the air.
In other words, the situation is completely different.

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Yes, I am not using the scientific method. I never said I was. What I'm doing is more akin to philosophy. I'm looking for the best explanation for a series of data.
You have no data, just claims. The prior probability of these claims is zero (they are impossible). The best explanation is that it's all nonsense.

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No I am not. You are uncharitably reading me. I said if we might. It is purely hypothetical. If there were somehow 1 million poltergeist cases involving massive amounts of testimony, yet not a single piece of "objective", non testimonial evidence (video, etc), I'd probably believe something paranormal was going on.
And you'd be wrong. Cf. religion.

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This is a joke right? Surely your world isn't so black and white.
There is no such thing as an authoritative source for a nonsensical claim.

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Haven't you ever read an essay in philosophy of religion? No, there is no logical reason why a proposition has to fit within the scientific method.
Sure. But we have learned that any propositions about the natural world that do not fit within the scientific method are worthless and can be immediately discarded.

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Yes. That is why science does not a priori rule out paranormal explainations.
Wrong. Science explicitly excludes paranormal explanations.

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Read an essay on miracles from a philosopher of religion.
Why on Earth would I want to do that?

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If you keep asking for evidence, you might not notice me offering it to you.
You haven't.

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I suggested Roll's book
Of stories. No evidence.

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and linked to an article with two fairly interesting cases (CTRL + F case 4 and 5).
Stories. No evidence.

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At any rate, I did not come here to convince you all that poltergeists are real. I dont believe they are at the moment. I came here to discuss the evidence for them.
There isn't any.

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The label poltergeist refers to the symptoms, not the cause.
Maybe, but there's no evidence that the symptoms exist.

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At any rate, my interest is in whether they can be explained naturally, not what kind of woo they are.
First you establish that the thing is real, and only then do you look for an explanation.

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Hypothesis are normally understood as frameworks that explain the data and that are falsifiable. This doesnt extend to woo land.
This is not woo land.

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Exactly! It does say absolutely nothing about the cause or mechanism of the event.
It says nothing about whether there even was an event.

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I can't think of many skeptics that would say there is a common cause to the phenomena.
What phenomena?

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Who are these excellent researchers? I would like to get into contact with them. I would very much like to know the skeptical history of poltergeists, and afterlife research in general.
Stray Cat is not talking about poltergeist researchers. He's talking about people who will tear any claim of the paranormal into tiny little pieces, exposing every unwarranted assumption, every misconception and logical flaw.

There are no excellent researchers into the paranormal, because there is no paranormal.
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Old 8th October 2012, 07:56 PM   #88
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Andyman, suggestion for you. This isn't specifically about poltergeists, but each week (or so), Brian Dunning of the Skeptoid podcast takes one claim of the paranormal and investigates it carefully, examining the available evidence and plausibility of various explanations. Each episode is focused on just one thing, so they're fairly short, generally between 10 and 15 minutes. He's up to episode 330, so there's sure to be some of interest to you.

You can find him at skeptoid.com.
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Old 8th October 2012, 08:00 PM   #89
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Originally Posted by PixyMisa View Post
Stray Cat is not talking about poltergeist researchers. He's talking about people who will tear any claim of the paranormal into tiny little pieces, exposing every unwarranted assumption, every misconception and logical flaw.

There are no excellent researchers into the paranormal, because there is no paranormal.
Why cant a Poltergeist researcher be a skeptic? This book has some poltergeist researchers in it that would be categorised as skeptics.
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Old 8th October 2012, 08:11 PM   #90
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Why cant a Poltergeist researcher be a skeptic?
Because they'll quickly come to the conclusion that it's a load of rubbish and find something better to do. Thus, the people who are most likely to be conducting such research are the people least able to do so.
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Old 8th October 2012, 08:14 PM   #91
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Why cant a Poltergeist researcher be a skeptic?
By definition.


Quote:
This book has some poltergeist researchers in it that would be categorised as skeptics.
No...YOU might classify them are "skeptics", but there is no reason to assume they are different from typical "believers".
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Old 8th October 2012, 08:42 PM   #92
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No...YOU might classify them are "skeptics", but there is no reason to assume they are different from typical "believers".
Yeah... except that they don't believe poltergeists or hauntings are paranormal...

In other words, they are different than "true believers"

Last edited by Andyman409; 8th October 2012 at 08:46 PM.
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Old 8th October 2012, 08:45 PM   #93
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Geemack, If you aren't going to read what I've said, don't even bother responding to me.

Not only have I been reading what you write, I've been responding to it.

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It is enormously clear that you have never read an essay on the philosophy of miracles.

The philosophy of miracles has nothing to do with how we go about objectively explaining the universe we live in. The fact that you want to make allowances for your pet woo based on philosophical concerns is why you appear to be "a paranormal believer who wants to give the paranormal hypothesis special treatment".

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It is also apparant that you think I'm a paranormal believer who wants to give the paranormal hypothesis special treatment, despite my protestations to the contrary.

The bulk of your commentary belies those protestations to the contrary.

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Whatever. This conversation was over a long time ago. Now we're just listening to each others echo.

If you don't have objective evidence to support the claim that poltergeist phenomena are something other than mundane and natural, then the null hypothesis stands. As long as you try to redefine the null hypothesis, redefine evidence, make special provisions for your pet woo, brush off the scientific method as an inconvenience, and try to foist the burden of proof onto the skeptics when it belongs entirely to those who believe poltergeists are real, the real skeptics here will likely continue to correct your errors and try to help you learn why you're failing.

You started this thread. You asked the question, "What is the best evidence for Poltergeists?" This is a forum dedicated to promoting critical thinking. To do that you must separate claims from evidence, something which you have vigorously refused to do. If you learn to apply the tools of critical thinking, skepticism, the scientific method, and objectivity, you'll understand that there is no objective evidence for poltergeists. That, after all, is the answer to the question you asked.
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Old 8th October 2012, 10:50 PM   #94
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PixiMisa, Geemack and others: I have re-read some of the comments I made, and I think an apology is in order for my rudeness. This thread should be about the evidence for poltergeists, not epistemological quibbles. My future threads will be more focused on specific arguments, as opposed to general observations. And yes, I'll focus on ones with reproducible evidence, like the cases of like Sean Harribance or SORRAT (both debunked but only examples I could think of at the moment).

Last edited by Andyman409; 8th October 2012 at 11:15 PM.
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Old 8th October 2012, 10:52 PM   #95
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Originally Posted by PixyMisa View Post
Andyman, suggestion for you. This isn't specifically about poltergeists, but each week (or so), Brian Dunning of the Skeptoid podcast takes one claim of the paranormal and investigates it carefully, examining the available evidence and plausibility of various explanations. Each episode is focused on just one thing, so they're fairly short, generally between 10 and 15 minutes. He's up to episode 330, so there's sure to be some of interest to you.

You can find him at skeptoid.com.
Thanks, looks great! Reminds me of "Skeptics guide to the universe", which I used to listen to often. BTW great way to drown out "Skeptiko".

Last edited by Andyman409; 8th October 2012 at 11:22 PM.
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Old 8th October 2012, 11:51 PM   #96
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
...

Likewise, if someone witnesses an obect fly on its own, we can use that as evidence in support of a poltergeist. We can also use it as evidence in support of fraud or dissassociative personality disorders. To determine which hypthesis is to be preferred, all we can do is look at more cases, and the analysis of them, pro and con. ...
This is where you go off-track, Andyman.
All we can do is look at that particular case and find out what makes it tick.
Not collecting more instances.

Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
...Haven't you ever read an essay in philosophy of religion? No, there is no logical reason why a proposition has to fit within the scientific method. ...
Yes, it does in this instance. We're discussing alleged physical manifestations, aren't we?



Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
.... My future threads will be more focused on specific arguments, as opposed to general observations. And yes, I'll focus on ones with reproducible evidence, like the cases of like Sean Harribance or SORRAT (both debunked but only examples I could think of at the moment).
That would be great. But why bring up debunked cases?
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Old 9th October 2012, 02:10 AM   #97
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Originally Posted by pakeha View Post
Yes, it does in this instance. We're discussing alleged physical manifestations, aren't we?
The cause would be non-physical and untracable. However, they could collect objective evidence for the effects, using cameras and what not. SORRAT did that... until, of course, they were caught lying

Originally Posted by pakeha View Post
That would be great. But why bring up debunked cases?
They are supposed to be examples of cases involving reproducable evidence. I brought them up since I couldn't think of any other ones off the back of my head.

Last edited by Andyman409; 9th October 2012 at 02:17 AM.
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Old 9th October 2012, 02:17 AM   #98
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
The label poltergeist refers to the symptoms, not the cause. Parapychologists only argue that they aren't the result of natural processes. At any rate, my interest is in whether they can be explained naturally, not what kind of woo they are.
And the only way to do this properly and accurately is to examine each individual case, one at a time. As the number of potential natural explanations will be based entirely upon the available evidence for each individual case study.

Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Hypothesis are normally understood as frameworks that explain the data and that are falsifiable. This doesnt extend to woo land. Paranormal explainations are unfalsifiable. They cannot be taken off the table, no matter what. All we can do is properly burden them with the burden of proof. Its what virtually every prominent skeptic does. Haven't you read an article from PSICOP?
Yes, and when we place the burden of proof where it rightly belongs, the paranormalists fail every time to accept it.
This speaks volumes about the validity of their claims.

Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Exactly! It does say absolutely nothing about the cause or mechanism of the event.
And yet the paranormalists use it as a diving board for all sorts of crack pottery! This speaks volumes about their understanding of how science and research works.

Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
I can't think of many skeptics that would say there is a common cause to the phenomena. Most think it is a combination of pyschological causes and fraud. Parapsychologists might differ as well. Again, the term poltergeist is attributed to the symptoms of the phenomena, not the cause.
Well to define "poltergeist" as; symptoms of something we don't understand, is like defining the Lochness Monster as; an ambiguous shape photographed floating in a Scottish Lake.

If these people are only looking for things we don't understand instead of actually devising ways of understanding things being reported, they are flogging a dead horse as far as moving the subject on is concerned. The only reason I can think of why anyone would want to do that is to maintain a blind belief in something they have personal emotional investment in... it's totally unscientific.

Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Who are these excellent researchers? I would like to get into contact with them. I would very much like to know the skeptical history of poltergeists, and afterlife research in general.
An excellent researcher will be able to research anything. My main areas of interest over the past 20 odd years has been UFOs and crop circles, but I can use the same skills to look into any subject that takes my interest. When armed with the ability to spot logical fallacies, inconsistencies and the usual vague language used by paranormalists (it's typically the same across the board where proponents of woo are concerned), there really is no need to specialise.
But the only way you'll find this out is to present a case that hasn't already been debunked.
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Old 9th October 2012, 02:19 AM   #99
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
They are supposed to be examples of cases involving reproducable evidence. I brought them up since I couldn't think of any other ones off the back of my head.
Then until you can, there really is nothing that requires an explanation beyond the natural... which is what people have been saying to you from page one.
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Old 9th October 2012, 02:28 AM   #100
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Originally Posted by Stray Cat View Post
And the only way to do this properly and accurately is to examine each individual case, one at a time. As the number of potential natural explanations will be based entirely upon the available evidence for each individual case study...

...An excellent researcher will be able to research anything. My main areas of interest over the past 20 odd years has been UFOs and crop circles, but I can use the same skills to look into any subject that takes my interest. When armed with the ability to spot logical fallacies, inconsistencies and the usual vague language used by paranormalists (it's typically the same across the board where proponents of woo are concerned), there really is no need to specialise.
But the only way you'll find this out is to present a case that hasn't already been debunked.
I agree with you on more or less everything here. I would not take a case that appears unexplainable to be evidence for the paranormal.

Quote:
Then until you can, there really is nothing that requires an explanation beyond the natural... which is what people have been saying to you from page one.
Those were just examples. I'll create a new thread for every case I find worthy of debunking.

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Old 9th October 2012, 02:40 AM   #101
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Originally Posted by aggle-rithm View Post
It's all relative.
Typically an adolescent female relative.
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Old 9th October 2012, 03:52 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
It is enormously clear that you have never read an essay on the philosophy of miracles.
It is enormously clear that you are an amateur philosopher without any real understanding of the subject. Lots of philosophers are skeptics, some skeptics are philosophers (e.g: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Baggini ). None of them would agree with what you are saying.
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Old 9th October 2012, 05:08 AM   #103
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
This whole thing has gone way off track. I just wanted to if anyone had read "the poltergeist", or any other prominent parapcyhological book (s) on poltergeists. I didn't like the idea of having to do an investigation from the ground up, like baron did, involving interviewing witnesses and whatnot. I am a busy guy, being a student and all. I wanted to see if anyone had already done stuff like that to save me time, and if I could see the results.
This just seems a little strange to me. It's like saying, "Hey, has anyone checked out that leprechan thing? I'm sure it's not real, but I don't have time to do any research."

I mean, some things are so transparently bogus that one wonders, why waste any time at all on it?
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Old 9th October 2012, 05:11 AM   #104
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
I'll create a new thread for every case I find worthy of debunking.
Are you expecting different answers?
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Old 9th October 2012, 05:12 AM   #105
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Those were just examples. I'll create a new thread for every case I find worthy of debunking.
Why don't you start with one, the one you judge to be most worthy?

Keep in mind that a story is just a story and the more information the better.
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Old 9th October 2012, 07:23 AM   #106
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post


Those were just examples. I'll create a new thread for every case I find worthy of debunking.
Why? Why not find evidence of any poltergeist and post it in this thread? (Not that I expect you'd be starting many new threads, anyway.)
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Old 9th October 2012, 08:53 AM   #107
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post

Those were just examples. I'll create a new thread for every case I find worthy of debunking.
Cloaking device off.

That probably wouldn't be a great idea. The mods might frown on a series of threads about individual poltergeist incidents/claims. Threads can go on forever, so just list them in this thread. You've got an audience of people who are all ears and raring to chomp into them, so go for it.

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Old 9th October 2012, 09:35 AM   #108
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Yeah... except that they don't believe poltergeists or hauntings are paranormal...

In other words, they are different than "true believers"


If they are looking for mundane explanations, as opposed to supernatural explanations, then I would agree...however...

If these researchers consider themselves "poltergeist" researchers, then I seriously question their objectivity since there is no credible, testable evidence that poltergeists even exist.

Again....if you have such evidence, the please present that evidence now.
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Old 9th October 2012, 09:49 AM   #109
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The crypto-zoo of things that go bump in the night is enormous.
Geists, polter or not are only one in this zoo of things that never were.
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Old 9th October 2012, 12:41 PM   #110
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What is the best evidence for poltergeists?

None. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zero. Zilch. The empty set. The null domain.
As Pixy posted above...

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Old 9th October 2012, 12:58 PM   #111
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Originally Posted by R.A.F. View Post
If they are looking for mundane explanations, as opposed to supernatural explanations, then I would agree...however...

If these researchers consider themselves "poltergeist" researchers, then I seriously question their objectivity since there is no credible, testable evidence that poltergeists even exist.
The researchers I refer to do look for mundane, non paranormal explanations, like disassociative states and fraud.

Quote:
Cloaking device off.

That probably wouldn't be a great idea. The mods might frown on a series of threads about individual poltergeist incidents/claims. Threads can go on forever, so just list them in this thread. You've got an audience of people who are all ears and raring to chomp into them, so go for it.

Re-cloaking and setting course for the Gamma Quadrant
Sorry. I'll try to keep all poltergeist related questions confined to this thread.

Originally Posted by aggle-rithm View Post
This just seems a little strange to me. It's like saying, "Hey, has anyone checked out that leprechan thing? I'm sure it's not real, but I don't have time to do any research."

I mean, some things are so transparently bogus that one wonders, why waste any time at all on it?
Poltergeists and afterlife research in general is a big topic. It's hard to do it justice by listing a single case, since its advocates often rely on sheer numbers to persuade. Right now, I am trying to get a grasp of what the "best cases" are, and what kinds of responses skeptics give. That's why I was kinda hoping to contact someone who had already done some research into the field, just to get some general impressions, tips and advice.

Fortunately, I see there are lots of useful threads here, like the one on the Rosenheim case. That was one that left me scratching my head.

Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
Are you expecting different answers?
When I think about it, this is the crux of the matter. Yes, every case will have a slightly different explanation. No two are identical. In some cases, there's evidence suggesting fraud is the cause. In others, delusion. A lot of the phenomena is caused by environmental effects, too. For instance, bad plumbing or seismic activity may be a contributing factor. There is also the quality of the reports themselves. Did the

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Old 9th October 2012, 01:49 PM   #112
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Thing 1 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
Thing 2 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
Thing 3 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
...
Thing 7954 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
Thing 7955 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.

Wow, look at all those things that might be zonglets! With so MANY of them, there must be some zonglets.

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Old 9th October 2012, 01:56 PM   #113
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Originally Posted by IXP View Post
Thing 1 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
Thing 2 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
Thing 3 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
...
Thing 7954 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.
Thing 7955 might be a zonglet, we can't know for sure.

Wow, look at all those things that might be zonglets! With so MANY of them, there must be some zonglets.

IXP
LOL. C'mon, I specifically said I wasn't planning to research all of them, just a representative sample.

Originally Posted by Croydon Bob View Post
It is enormously clear that you are an amateur philosopher without any real understanding of the subject. Lots of philosophers are skeptics, some skeptics are philosophers (e.g: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Baggini ). None of them would agree with what you are saying.
Hey, I already apologised for the rudeness! Anyways, I am more than aware of how skeptical the philosophical community is. Nearly 80% self identify as atheists. A great example of a skeptical philosopher would be Stephen Law, who wrote a book criticising the paranormal called "believing bullshi*", and publishes in the philosophy of religion. Other examples would be would be Graham Oppy, Keith Parsons and Jeff Lowder, who run the blog "The Secular Outpost", and have released many books through prometheus books. And they would probably agree with my epistemology.

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Old 9th October 2012, 02:59 PM   #114
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
The researchers I refer to do look for mundane, non paranormal explanations, like disassociative states and fraud.
Do they refer to themselves as "poltergeist" researchers?


Quote:
Poltergeists and afterlife research in general is a big topic.
Among rational people?, not really.
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Old 9th October 2012, 03:24 PM   #115
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Originally Posted by R.A.F. View Post
Do they refer to themselves as "poltergeist" researchers?




Among rational people?, not really.
Were you once molested by a poltergeist or something? If you think people who take an interest in the phenomenon are irrational fools (like the world-renowned ignoramus Colin Wilson, for example) then why are you in this thread?
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Old 9th October 2012, 03:42 PM   #116
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Originally Posted by baron View Post
Were you once molested by a poltergeist or something?
HEY....these are easy questions. If it only takes easy questions to cause you to respond in such a manner, then perhaps this board isn't the place for you.

In other words, the questions only get HARDER from here....


Quote:
If you think people who take an interest in the phenomenon are irrational fools...
Boy...didn't take you long to attempt to put words in my mouth...I posted nothing like that, so I would appreciate it if you wouldn't do that again.

Sorry to "shout", but I want to make sure there is no confusion about this.


Thing is....what phenomena? You make the assumption that there is something to investigate, yet you have presented ZERO evidence that this whole thing is anything other than peoples imaginations run wild.
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Old 9th October 2012, 03:47 PM   #117
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Originally Posted by baron View Post
If you think people who take an interest in the phenomenon are irrational fools (like the world-renowned ignoramus Colin Wilson, for example)
Actually, good example...I agree with you that he is an irrational fool.


Here's a suggestion...you might want to find someone who isn't "known" for being a credulous believer in things regarded as "paranormal".
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Old 9th October 2012, 03:59 PM   #118
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
Poltergeists definatly make the most extraordinary claims of all paranoral phenomenon.
Nah. The most extraordinary claims have to be the religious ones. Creation of the world; end of the world, etc. They dwarf poltergeist claims.

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Old 9th October 2012, 04:04 PM   #119
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Originally Posted by Andyman409 View Post
And with a poltergesit, there is a claim that a spoon flew through the air. The witness either percieved it perfectly, percieved it improperly, or did not percieve it at all AKA lied.
There's a logical problem here. If either the second or third cases are true, what is the referent of the pronoun it?

In other words, you seem to be assuming the existence of poltergeists in your argument.

Starting with that assumption can only lead to circular reasoning.
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Old 9th October 2012, 04:14 PM   #120
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Originally Posted by R.A.F. View Post
Actually, good example...I agree with you that he is an irrational fool.

Here's a suggestion...you might want to find someone who isn't "known" for being a credulous believer in things regarded as "paranormal".
Surely you've read "the believing brain" or something like it, so you know how easy it is for otherwise smart people to construe ridiculous beliefs.

And for the last time, this was supposed to be a general discussion- I never promised that I was going to present a specific piece of evidence. I will if I run into anything I cant wrap my head around.

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