A fascinating interview with Brian Josephson

#3
A while ago Alex and I passed a few comments when I listened to his interview with Kuhn, here is the original message I sent him (Alex):

Yesterday I listened to your interview with Dr Kuhn, as I'm a fan of Closer to Truth. Wow, as you say : What's going on there? A brain the size of a planet, yet not able, or more like not willing, to see the potential in NDEs. He shrugs them off with not more than a cursory glance. Apparently his own daughter tells him he is missing a trick where NDEs are concerned.

Just mind blowing!

The comments:
Alex
Hey Stephen, I think you hit on the key question. In this case I think a lot of it has to do with his desire to stay chummy with the academically anointed folks he likes to get on his show. Give him credit for at least being in the game when it comes to real consciousness topics.
Me
It makes me wonder if subconsciously he wants wants a certain result? I do get the sense he enjoys (a little too much) his status among the academic 'royalty'. It's a pity.
Alex
agreed

Someone called John Brown
Dr Kuhn is a former neuroscientist turned multimillionaire international business advisor. I've watched many of his shows with materialist scientists, philosophers, and traditional theologians. His primary motive during his interviews seems to be "...Can I take it with me?" or "...Can I stay me after death?". Pretty shallow. Rarely does he have a non traditional guest. I find him pretty boring, and rather desperate to survive death without keeping what he likes about this life. You know what they say about the "rich man" and heaven. Good luck with that.
 
#4
Still, Kuhn does interview important people like Stephenson imo, he is doing valuable work I think.

Does our critical judgement of him do any good? I wonder.
 
#5
It makes me wonder if subconsciously he wants wants a certain result? I do get the sense he enjoys (a little too much) his status among the academic 'royalty'. It's a pity.
Well, there are a number of times I've seen posts on this forum by people who say something like "I've seen the evidence for 'such-and-such-a-phenomena' and I agree that it's completely convincing. But I still can't accept it".

That isn't so much an ultra-sceptic view, it's from people who are reasonably open-minded. But there's some sort of anchor which people find themselves chained to, which means they can't break free and simply "follow the data".

My opinion. There are only two principle ways that people change their views on anything, whether it is politics, religion, science, pretty much anything. First, if they happen to be reachable at a particular point, usually quite early in life, when they are freely able to consider all ideas, toss them around, try them out, and quite freely form a new view or outlook. I call that the "window". The second is more drastic. It takes some sort of life-changing event, such as being afflicted by some illness, or some great upheaval in personal circumstances, something which is earth-shattering, this creates another kind of window. Outside of these windows, most people cling to their anchors.
 
#6
One of the things I liked was that BJ said something to the effect that he liked the idea of a god that wasn't infinitely intelligent, and who had to experiment and tinker around to create life on earth. This chimes with my intuition. I mean an infinitely intelligent god would not need any evolution or anything - he could just set everything up in one go.

More generally, infinities always seem to cause trouble.

David
 
#7
Well, there are a number of times I've seen posts on this forum by people who say something like "I've seen the evidence for 'such-and-such-a-phenomena' and I agree that it's completely convincing. But I still can't accept it".

That isn't so much an ultra-sceptic view, it's from people who are reasonably open-minded. But there's some sort of anchor which people find themselves chained to, which means they can't break free and simply "follow the data".

My opinion. There are only two principle ways that people change their views on anything, whether it is politics, religion, science, pretty much anything. First, if they happen to be reachable at a particular point, usually quite early in life, when they are freely able to consider all ideas, toss them around, try them out, and quite freely forms a new view or outlook. I call that the "window". The second is more drastic. It takes some sort of life-changing event, such as being afflicted by some illness, or some great upheaval in personal circumstances, something which is earth-shattering, this creates another kind of window. Outside of these windows, most people cling to their anchors.
I think perhaps it's the difference between seeing the evidence for something and seeing it for real.
 
#8
One of the things I liked was that BJ said something to the effect that he liked the idea of a god that wasn't infinitely intelligent, and who had to experiment and tinker around to create life on earth. This chimes with my intuition. I mean an infinitely intelligent god would not need any evolution or anything - he could just set everything up in one go.

More generally, infinities always seem to cause trouble.

David
Or maybe infinite intelligence forces such a being to adopt the course which will yield the best outcome long term? :)
 
#9
Well, there are a number of times I've seen posts on this forum by people who say something like "I've seen the evidence for 'such-and-such-a-phenomena' and I agree that it's completely convincing. But I still can't accept it".

That isn't so much an ultra-sceptic view, it's from people who are reasonably open-minded. But there's some sort of anchor which people find themselves chained to, which means they can't break free and simply "follow the data".

My opinion. There are only two principle ways that people change their views on anything, whether it is politics, religion, science, pretty much anything. First, if they happen to be reachable at a particular point, usually quite early in life, when they are freely able to consider all ideas, toss them around, try them out, and quite freely form a new view or outlook. I call that the "window". The second is more drastic. It takes some sort of life-changing event, such as being afflicted by some illness, or some great upheaval in personal circumstances, something which is earth-shattering, this creates another kind of window. Outside of these windows, most people cling to their anchors.
I think there's at least a third way of changing one's opinion, and that is simply the passage of time. I think it's often a matter of being interested in something for a while, forming one's views, and then becoming less interested as one's attention shifts elsewhere. Then one rediscovers the previous area of interest and finds that one's attitudes have inexplicably changed.

IOW, one of the keys to changing one's mind is having a period of not being obsessed with something, i.e. a period where one's self-perceived identity comes less and less to be identified with former views. Unconsciously, it becomes easier and easier to let go of them. Eventually, letting go of them is self-perceived as not being as big a deal as one once thought.

I think we all experience this kind of thing; that we can all look back on previously held positions and wonder why on earth we thought that way, without being able to pinpoint specific events that changed our mind. IMO, it's all part and parcel of growing older, of the transition from youthful idealism to the more nuanced approaches to life we adopt as we mature.
 
#15
BTW, here's a recent interview on CTT with Sam Parnia:


Notice that Kuhn repeatedly uses the phrase "extraordinary claim". Well, that's not because the claim isn't credible, but because it contradicts the materialist paradigm: it's an argument from authority. Fair enough that Kuhn, despite his leanings, is generous enough to give his guests a platform even when they hold views different from his own (and we should be grateful for that), but he does betray something of his own prejudices.
 
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#16
I don't think we should be too hard on Kuhn - I suppose it is very hard to present these interviews so that the maximum number of people become interested. Sceptics want to see the guest pushed - they are more likely to go on listening if the guest is able to respond. For comparison, can you imagine Wiseman running a similar set of interviews?

David
 
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