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The Premier Skeptic- James Randi


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#16 JimTheBrit

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 07:57 AM

flyingorb: The inability to demonstrate any ability I do understand. Most of what I see and consider credable in the paranormal field is dependant on an outside influence.  The event, be it pics,evp,manifestations, is not something that can be "forced to occur" by an investigator.  The interaction is dependant upon the spirit trying to communicate.  Their time , their place and their choice of person to receive.  Just my thoughts.  Glad you stopped in Jim, hope you stick around and continue to exchange ideas.

Thanks for the welcome! :)

I understand what you’re saying here. However, the demonstration of something that cannot be ‘forced to occur’ is not a valid proposal for an attempt to win the JREF prize. The prize is only open to people who claim they can make paranormal powers/products occur/work. Thus, their repeated failure to demonstrate is puzzling (after they’ve explicitly said what they can do, when and under what conditions, and are tested with this in mind).

MTV: This is what really tick's me off, is when you're telling someone about ghost's,then they turn around and say that it's all in your mind,when I know it isn't.They WILL NOT believe anything you say that deal's with the paranormal.That is being close-minded as far as I'm concerned.

If they cannot acknowledge even the possibility that paranormal phenomenon may be real then yes, they are truly close-minded. However, is it the case instead that they think it may be a possibility but are as yet unpersuaded by the evidence presented to them so far? This is not a case of close-mindedness, rather just a person who is unconvinced. How might you go ahead and persuade them? Do you have evidence of a better quality that you can show them, perhaps?

And that is what Randi is.Very close-minded.Like I was saying,he don't believe in nothing!That is what tick's me off.There, I've said it.Whoo.

Close-minded as in ‘closed to possibility of the existence of the supernatural’? If so, then I disagree. Why would he bother even offering his prize? Randi writes, in his commentary of August 20, 2000:
‘Einstein said it: "No amount of experimentation will ever prove me right, but ONE experiment can prove me wrong." That one experiment has never been produced. The one experiment that proves me wrong in my belief that psychic/supernatural/occult powers or forces do not exist, has not emerged in the hundreds already done. Until that is produced, I'm justified in my belief, and the JREF holds onto the million dollars . . .    But I'm prepared to be shown wrong, as Einstein was.’
Randi admits he is unconvinced that paranormal powers/forces exist but is prepared to be shown wrong. Therefore he is still open to the possibility they do exist, like a true skeptic.

#17 MTV

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 08:05 AM

I still say if given the proof,Randi will still say it's not real.That it was hysteria.You watch.He will be given the proof,but still pooh-pooh it. :-X

#18 flyingorb

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 08:54 AM

Hi MTV,

I respect your opinion, but after reading some of his lectures, exploring the JREF Board and talking to some of the folks there, I am not sure Randi is "closed minded".  Skeptical? yes.  Biased? probably.  Theatrical? definately.  Sarcastic? Oh boy. *LOL*  However, he does have a target painted on his head and is willing to put his money and reputation behind it.  I agree with what Rockhauler said in an earlier thread.  It was something along the line of the moneys there if their ability is real.  If they don't go after it, its because they know they cant pass the test.  (Sorry Rock if I butchered your words too much).

I personally think Randi is a thorn in the side (or a pain somewhere else) of the paranormal community.  Why is he disliked by alot of folks?  (I am NOT refering to anyone in particular, just a global comment) It's because he exposes liars and frauds among us and that truth hurts.  I guess what I am saying is that if Randi is a pain, in my opinion he is a needed and welcome pain.  The truth is the truth no matter the source, or content.
CRY HAVOK! Let Slip The Chihuahuas Of War.....When an ORB dies.......a Chihuahua is born!

#19 SpiritsOfMd

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Posted 17 June 2003 - 01:30 PM

When I was younger I used to think that people like Randi were just rude, mean old people, I didnt take the time to get to know them and understand there reasonings, now that I am older I have learned through life lessons that it was there intelligence that intimidated me, thus making me think what they were mean :-/  I dont think that Randi doesnt believe in the paranormal I think he is just tired of the nosense proposed by many paranormal believers and not to mention ALL the fruitcakes trying to claim that million dollars, lol :)  

Im sure to some it seems rather boring to always be able to disprove something thru science but in the end if you do not question whats befor you, your delight in what you have will be short lived, and in the end you may say....If only I had...... :(  Im glad that there is someone like Randi because if there were not I may never know the truth, even if its different than my own.
[FONT=Courier][COLOR=blue]"EVEN IF YOUR ON THE RIGHT TRACK, IF YOU JUST SIT THERE YOU WILL STILL GET HIT"

#20 mishaa

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Posted 22 June 2003 - 07:28 PM

Judging from the posts on his board, he seems to attract people who are atheists. I have no problem with  a lack of belief, but I feel that he has drawn a line in the sand, and if you can't touch it or prove it, it doesn't exist.  His followers seem almost rabid about it.

It's one thing to be skeptical, to look for rational explanations, it's another to dismiss everything. I think faith or belief in something, whether it's God, Goddess, ghosts or just plain love, is vital to the human existence.

#21 flyingorb

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Posted 22 June 2003 - 07:55 PM

It's one thing to be skeptical, to look for rational explanations, it's another to dismiss everything. I think faith or belief in something, whether it's God, Goddess, ghosts or just plain love, is vital to the human existence.


Hi Mishaa,

In the all-too-brief moments of insite granted me, I have to agree with you that love is the key.  A wise man once said that we were not put here to show our love for God, but rather so that He could show His love for us.  I think that this is true.

As for the folks at Randi's board (JREF)
1.  I have found vicious closed minded cynics
2.  I have found folks that believe paranormal events are caused by mundane natural explanations, but would consider the possibility of a paranormal explaination- if you can back up your claim.
3.  Skeptical Believers who believe in the paranormal, but you must eliminate all mundane explanations and back up your claim before making a paranormal conclusion.

Hey Mishaa!  Sounds like I just described the fine folks here at Ghostvillage too!!  (but I have not seen anyone really vicious here).  Myself, I think we can all learn something from the last two types of skeptics at JREF.
CRY HAVOK! Let Slip The Chihuahuas Of War.....When an ORB dies.......a Chihuahua is born!

#22 chesta

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 08:11 AM

Skeptics can do a lot of good with things like exposing frauds but unfortunately many of them use it solely dismiss anything going against their already set beliefs.  The cynical skeptics (they aren't all that way) like Randi seems to be don't do any actual research or experimentation when it comes to paranormal they just sit back and criticize it.  The thing that bothers me the most about them is they claim to be paranormal researchers when they are obviously just out to supress and debunk evidence for the paranormal. There is tons of evidence in many subjects for the paranormal out there but the closed-minded skeptics will always find a way to dismiss it no matter how good the results.  I'm not too sure about his million dollar challenge but I have my doubts after reading these articles:
http://skeptics.vict...com/reward.html
http://www.alternati...james-randi.htm
http://www.alternati...di_retreats.htm
http://clik.to/astralprojectionI refuse to commit the fashionable stupidity of regarding everything I cannot explain as a fraud. – Carl Jung

#23 JimTheBrit

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 11:49 AM

Hi chesta, welcome to the forum, glad to have your company. I'm Jim - I was invited over from the forums at the James Randi Educational Foundation to give a skeptic's viewpoint on things (though I notice that many of the membership already have a healthy skeptical attitude!) I've read Victor Zammit's pages already and will try to respond to some of his points over the next couple of days. I know Randi himself has written about them too and I'll try to find them for inclusion. Hopefully, you'll find yourself in a better position to decide whether its a good idea to accept or reject Mr Zammit's views.

Regards,
Jim.

Edited 30 June to add: Got a lot on my plate at the mo, response is going to be delayed slightly.

#24 reprise

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 07:35 PM

As Jim is too modest to link to one of his own threads, I'd like to point out that the JREF challenge is far from the only prize up for grabs by those who believe they can demonstrate paranormal abilities.

Summary of worldwide paranormal challenges

#25 chesta

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 07:54 PM

Hi Jim, I'd be willing to keep an open-mind and discuss about Victor and Randi.  I have considered trying Randi's challenge in the future possibly in a few different areas (i'm not ready yet) but I have many doubts after reading the rules mostly because of the negativity the he has shown towards anything paranormal.  As for Victor Zammit I think he brings up some great points and presents very strong evidence for the afterlife which I can really relate to because in the last 3 years I've had many undeniable experiences with the paranormal.    
http://clik.to/astralprojectionI refuse to commit the fashionable stupidity of regarding everything I cannot explain as a fraud. – Carl Jung

#26 Rockhauler2k1

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 08:49 AM

Here is an interesting thought :

If someone were to find conclusive evidence of life after death that was undisputable and scientific, they wouldnt need the losuy million dollars offered by Jref.

They would be overwhelmed by the media and could sell their proof for 10 times that .


Just a thought ,

Rockhauler2k1
Many of the truths that we cling to depend greatly upon our point of view.Posted Image

#27 flyingorb

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 10:03 AM

Hi chesta,
Hi reprise,
Hi Jim,
Hi Rock,

Thought I would pop in before my computer dies again, this is about the 5th ressurection attempt in the last few days.

Interesting links.

About Randi's attitude on the paranormal, he is first and foremost a showman.  If he can use satire, sarchasm and such to prove his point, he will and he is VERY good at it.  I suppose a continuing line of fakes constantly trying for the big bucks could make one a bit negative about the applicants too.  Some may not think so, but I think Randi is only human! *LOL*

I am intensley curious about Randi's belief on what happens after death.  Have any of you folks from JREF read anything about his views on that. :o
CRY HAVOK! Let Slip The Chihuahuas Of War.....When an ORB dies.......a Chihuahua is born!

#28 reprise

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 12:05 PM

Here is an interesting thought :

If someone were to find conclusive evidence of life after death that was undisputable and scientific, they wouldnt need the losuy million dollars offered by Jref.

They would be overwhelmed by the media and could sell their proof for 10 times that .


Just a thought ,

Rockhauler2k1


Plenty of JREFers have made the same observation Rock, but if you think that proving the existence of life after death would make one rich, can you imagine what awaits the person who can prove the existence of telekinesis?  :)

#29 flyingorb

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 04:40 PM

Hi reprise!

Perhaps I don't have enough faith in my fellow man, but I think the prize for anyone actually showing telekenetic ability would be death.  Surely someone would accuse them of consorting with demons and assasinate them.

sigh..........
CRY HAVOK! Let Slip The Chihuahuas Of War.....When an ORB dies.......a Chihuahua is born!

#30 chesta

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 07:17 PM

When it comes to anything paranormal science can only prove so much I think the only way of really knowing is for people to try and experience that sort of thing themselves.  I've had enough paranormal experiences to where I really don't need science to prove it to me anymore but I still hope it will even though there is alreadly a large amount of proof for the afterlife more should be done in that area.  

Once I get more experience I would like to try proving it by identifying remote objects with OBEs which I have been able to do a few times before, but everyone that I've talked to about this besides skeptics advised against it for many reasons.  I'm also intested in maybe starting to try telekinesis and remote viewing but when it comes to demonstrating abilities like that to me after reading the rules and different opinions on it the challenge doesn't seem fair or valid but more of a publicity stunt.  
http://clik.to/astralprojectionI refuse to commit the fashionable stupidity of regarding everything I cannot explain as a fraud. – Carl Jung




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