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Parapsychology and the Paranormal: The Conspiracy To Deny The Real

By       Message Grant Lawrence     Permalink
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futurehealth.org

"I cannot seriously believe in quantum theory because it cannot be reconciled with the idea that physics should represent a reality in time and space, free from spooky actions at a distance." - Albert Einstein

".....This is you being quoted in the UK's Daily Mail: "I agree that by the standards of any other area of science that remote viewing is proven. That begs the question do we need higher standards of evidence when we study the paranormal?"

Then you went on in a subsequent interview and further refined that by saying: "That's a slight misquote because I was using the term in more of a general sense of ESP. That is, I was not talking about remote viewing per se, but rather Ganzfeld, etc. as well. I think that they do meet the usual standards for a normal claim but are not convincing enough for an extraordinary claim....."
Moderator Alex Tsakiris in an exchange with paranormal skeptic Dr. Richard Wiseman and paranormal proponent Dr. Richard Sheldrake...."Source: Skeptico

I recently listened with some fascination to a debate between Dr. Wiseman, a parapsychology skeptic, and Dr. Sheldrake, a parapsychology advocate. After awhile it became abundantly clear that the science of the proof of parapsychology, or what some would call psychic phenomena, would never be accepted because whatever evidence that is gathered would always be shot down with the silly argument 'extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.'

First off, who is to decide if a claim is extraordinary or not?

If you ask quantum theoretical physicists, they might not look upon claims of psychic phenomena as that extraordinary since they have come to understand that consciousness and energy are somehow entangled.

."...Einstein's great objection to quantum theory came from its denial of physical reality before observation (quantum theory says that only after we measure a property value of a particle does that property gain physical reality - before we measure it we must consider it to be in a superposition state). We often quote Einstein's rejection of quantum indeterminacy: "God does not play dice", but his less-quoted objection to quantum theory's denial of physical reality reveals his more serious concern: "' Source: Ipod.org

Secondly, who is to decide what amount of extraordinary evidence, over and above the usual evidence required in psychological experiments, is going to be sufficient?

Early research conducted by JB Rhine at Duke University in the 1930's and 40' demonstrated parapsychology or ESP as it was often called. Rhine also conducted the first meta-analysis in psychology when he and a colleague examined all scientific telepathy and clairvoyance experiments that were published over 60 years and found the evidence supported the paranormal.

More recently various experiments have shown that the body's autonomic nervous system responds in a 'precognitive' way to frightening or stimulating stimuli before the introduction of any stimulus or conditioning. Dr. Dean Radin of the Institute of Noetic Sciences found that subjects' skin response showed electrical activity before they were shown 'affective pictures', or images that draw a strong emotional response.

Moreover, "A growing number of recent studies are suggesting that other parts of the body may also show a presentiment response, including the heart (McCraty et al., 2004a) and the brain (Bierman & Scholte, 2002; Bierman & van Ditzhuijzen, 2006; Hinterberger et al., 2006; McCraty et al., 2004b). The results of a study by Radin and Eva Lobach (2007) of the University of Amsterdam, which was published in the latest issue of the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, seems to add to the evidence for the latter." Source: Public Parapsychology. It has also been shown and replicated that secret observation of subjects increase skin conductance response (Marilyn J. Schlitz , Stephen LaBerg)

One of the most widely performed extra-sensory perception experiments is the Ganzfield test. In this test, a subject is deprived of sensory stimulus while a sender attempts to send random images mentally. The subject repeats out loud the mental images that he or she is receiving and those responses are compared to the visual images sent by the sender. "By chance the average subject should guess the right target 25% of the time but Edinburgh's Koestler Parapsychological Unit often achieves 33% . Also, "Between 1974 and 2004, 88 ganzfeld experiments were done, reporting 1,008 hits out of 3,145 tests (a 32.1% hit rate).[11] In 1982, Charles Honorton presented a paper at the annual convention of the Parapsychological Association that summarized the results of the Ganzfeld experiments up to that date, and concluded that they represented sufficient evidence to demonstrate the existence of psi."

The amount of experiments and the massive data from decades of research is overwhelming. Yet, The skeptics always say, after decades of proof, that the experiments are flawed (even before examining them) and/or that more proof is needed to make a firm conclusion. No matter how much scientific and empirical evidence is gathered concerning the paranormal, the skeptics will always decide that the massive amount of replicated proof obtained will not meet their unscientific and ill defined requirement of 'extraordinary evidence.'

In truth, saying that some claim requires extraordinary evidence with no empirical parameters to decide what should qualify as 'extraordinary' is completely unscientific.

The skeptics are acting irrational, doctrinaire, and unscientific in their use of an unreasonable argument to dismiss true scientific inquiry of psychic phenomenon, which has been scientifically proven to be a real phenomenon by usual levels of validity and reliability for psychological experiments.

So why should parapsychology be held to a higher standard than normal psychological research?

The answer: It shouldn't

Rather it is clear that parapsychology only seems extraordinary to those that hold a completely outdated view of reality which happens to be most of science. That view of reality is found in 17th century Newtonian Physics and the mechanistic view of matter and the universe.

The scientific establishment is dependent on governmental and corporate funding and grants. So as usual, we have to follow the money trail to see why there is such little interest and such a great deal of skepticism from the scientific community over the paranormal. In short, if there isn't any money in a particular field of inquiry and investigation then there will be few in the scientific community to pursue it. There will also be a great deal of skepticism toward what they are not conditioned through economic reward to pursue or understand.

But let's examine this further.

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http://grantlawrence.blogspot.com/
I work as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and a School Counselor in Gallup New Mexico. I am an advocate for Higher Consciousness as being the most peaceful and helpful way for humanity to move past present circumstances.

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