Dr. Michael Shermer on Near-Death Experience Science |379|

Discussion in 'Skeptiko Shows' started by Alex, May 1, 2018.

  1. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    I don't understand what you think is wrong in David's quote?

    David
     
  2. Smithy

    Smithy Member

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    Hmmm - In hindsight I understand that I am wrong - partly, that is.
    I got the impression that David thought that the denture man was one of Penny's patients. Sorry for that! (BTW - past November I spoke in person with Penny - she is a wonderful woman!)

    In any case, there was the usual error that the nurse in question was a female. No, it was a male. Also, it was not a matter of the nurse not remembering where the denture was hidden. But the nurse had a few days off after having resuscitated the denture man. And then, when he entered the ward where the patient was in his bed, he (the patient) exclaimed: "Hey! But you! You know where my dentures are!"

    During his OBE the man, who by all accounts seemed as dead as a doornail (no heart beat, not breathing, as cold as ice, having blue lividity marks already all over the place) saw from above everything that happened to his body and also all sorts of things in the room he could not have seen from his physical vantage points.

    Smithy
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2018
  3. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

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    Man this was brutal to listen to
     
  4. LetsEat

    LetsEat Member

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    There is no evidence that DMT is produced in humans during sleep or during death in quantities sufficient to cause a 'trip' yet this guy presents this as an absolute fact. (http://beckleyfoundation.org/2017/07/05/do-our-brains-produce-dmt-and-if-so-why/). In addition this guy claims that DMT experiences are hard to remember and then equates them with NDE's which we know to be some of peoples most memorable experience, an experience that rarely fades decades later.

    He claims a DMT trip is about 15 minutes and that the average NDE is about 7 minutes long or the patient would suffer severe brain damage so therefore no one has had firsthand experience of the afterlife because they wouldn't have even gotten passed the supposed DMT trip. This is false, many people have been brought back hours later after clinical death and some of these people have had NDE's. (https://www.near-death.com/science/evidence/some-people-were-dead-for-several-days.html)

    The proposed mechanism for DMT releasing to cause an NDE is that DMT is slowing cell death from Hypoxia. According to Penny Sartori the NDE researcher "Cases in which blood was extracted at the time of the NDE / OBE did not support the anoxia or hypercarbia theories." (https://iands.org/research/nde-rese...-sartori-phd-prospective-study.html?showall=1)

    I really dislike when people front authority like this.

    "Number 1, everyone will have a massive DMT trip when they die"
    Where is the evidence for this?
     
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  5. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

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    That guy has a lot to learn, this was the 3rd video I watched from him and realized he is not very intelligent
     
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  6. Wormwood

    Wormwood Member

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    It really makes me wonder how accurately they can predict our lives. Can they see the future in its entirety? I’m guessing they can make solid predictions, and have a thorough understanding of probability waves and things of the sort. Given NDE and life reviews and free will, I can’t imagine that they know everything, or do they and I just can’t comprehend with my limited understanding? That’s possible also. It’s just hard for me to imagine any meaning behind a life review and even consequences of actions if you merely just stepped into a play and all of your lines and actions had already been determined.

    Life reviewer: “ Nik, why were you mean to your brother when you were children?”

    Me: “Rememeber? This is the life and play we choose for me, I was just playing the part.”

    I can’t imagine that it works that way. Without going into the foggy details, I have gathered from several sources that we do indeed go off course. This would lead me to believe that they don’t predict near future events with 100 present certainty, or, at any rate, maybe it’s a limitation that they purposely place upon themselves.
     
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  7. dpdownsouth

    dpdownsouth Member

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    Maybe the pre-life review, if there is such a thing, is an exercise in installing handicaps, strengths, chocke points, defining events, etc. - the broad brush strokes of a life to come. Then you get to navigate the terrain as you see fit and to the best of your ability.

    Or perhaps we each have a chaotic attractor set for us at birth.... so our life will tend to cohere towards a certain state or goal. In this way random events and decisions could still move towards a specific end.
    Well, a being with an elastic relationship to time could comprehend a future outcome rather easily, imo. And this wouldn't necessarily contravene the idea of free-will as said outcome would be the result of a vast series of decisions made entirely freely.
     
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  8. Judith

    Judith New

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    I agree with this. According to Michael Newton's books, planning does take place, but it is more in terms of probabilities...especially the further out in time you go. People can make "mistakes" and deviate from their original "life's plan". I too have problems with the notion of determinism. If it's all determined ahead of time, why bother?
     
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  9. Wormwood

    Wormwood Member

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    I agree with almost all of this. Particularly the “if there is such a thing.” I want to be careful about speaking of such things as if they were certainties. But I often do when we get converging lines of evidence suggesting the same thing.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2018
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  10. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

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    https://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2018/04/22/how-to-deal-with-a-shermer-attack/

    How to deal with a Shermer attack


    It could happen at any time. People are still inviting Shermer to give talks at various events, despite his sordid history. He could suddenly show up on your campus! Do not fear, however. One thing we know about the Shermer is that he’s toothless. He’ll bluster and threaten, but he’ll back down, just as he did in his threats to Santa Barbara City College and their campus newspaper, The Channels.


    Following threats to pursue legal action against The Channels, Professor Raeanne Napoleon, and City College as a whole, Dr. Michael Shermer announced in an email Saturday that he was dropping his case.

    Although we have an excellent case that I was defamed, it is not worth the time and cost pursuing legal recourse for what is (hopefully) an inconsequential incident, Shermer wrote in his final letter regarding the matter. The letter was circulated on campus email by instructor Mark McIntire.



    Read more: https://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2018/04/22/how-to-deal-with-a-shermer-attack/#ixzz5FAk7J5dh
     
  11. Wormwood

    Wormwood Member

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    All of this surprises me. I haven't looked into any of this so, to be fair to Shermer, I won't say anything. But it all surprises me because he always seemed like a genuinely good dude to me.
     
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  12. Wormwood

    Wormwood Member

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    And I don’t doubt that that article is highly prejudiced. It seems obvious it has an agenda. I’d like to hear the other side.
     
  13. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    Thanks for that!

    That tactic of backing down immediately as soon as a lawyer is involved seems to be quite common. My partner had two occasions to employ a lawyer. In each case the lawyer responded that he would settle the matter, and claim his fee from the other party - which he duly did. One was an insurance company, the other a utility company that had caused some damage but wanted to avoid paying the full cost. In both cases they backed down immediately!

    Of course, to be fair, the fact that someone is accused of sexual assault has little bearing on their views on intellectual matters - but does he use the same technique to silence other critics?

    David
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2018
  14. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    This is some of the stuff that fascinates me - along with the suggestion that the whole time-line - past and future is visible at the same time.

    As I have said before, this might imply that there is another time dimension so that people can actually operate in this space????

    I seem to have absorbed these ideas from a variety of sources, and I wonder if anyone knows just how well documented these concepts are - particularly the idea that we select a life from a viewpoint where it is already visible!

    David
     
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  15. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    Do you know if anyone has managed to repeat any of Michael Newton's hypnotherapy results?

    David
     
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  16. Wormwood

    Wormwood Member

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    I was wondering the same. I've talked personally to two people (through the internet) who had amazing experiences with him and said he was legit all the way. Both of these people were credible in my eyes. They both said the same thing. They were put on a waiting list. One middle aged lady wrote him via snail mail. Didnt hear back for 6 months and forgot about it. One day, she recieved a letter asking if she was still interested. She wrote back "yes." She was put on a waiting list and got to see him several months later. Had an amazing experience, remembered a past life along with some in-between life memories she claimed. She did mention to me that he was training people to follow in his footsteps.

    I didnt realize he died in 2016.
     
  17. LetsEat

    LetsEat Member

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    If I remember right Alex actually went to this guy and did a skeptiko episode on this. (http://lightbetweenlives.com/about_us/about_us_index.html, https://skeptiko.com/243-scott-de-tamble-explores-lives-between-lives/)

    There's the Dollores Cannon material which is very similar to Michael Newtons work also.
     
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  18. Wormwood

    Wormwood Member

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    There are several pre-birth accounts I have seen on YouTube, a couple of them seemed credible (but who knows), and they suggested something similar. And I have my friends account, whom I trust. He’s not at all an exaggerator or liar. But I’d like to see it studied on some academic level. Pre-birth memories seem rare, or at least they aren’t widely reported. But I wonder if hypnosis could do some work on that. Didn’t Michael Newton touch on that? I never finished his book. Maybe I’ll pick it back up this weekend.

    There are several pre-birth memories written here. This looks just like Dr Longs page, I think it must be another which he created. Or it was heavily influenced by Dr Longs page, one of the two.

    http://www.oberf.org/prebirth.htm
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2018
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  19. Radish

    Radish Member

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    There is a recording of someone doing a life between lives regression here:
    Glimpse Into The Afterlife – Life Between Lives Journey Recorded

    And this is a second link (which I haven't listened to myself yet) of a later discussion of that regression:
    Afterlife Journey, Life Between Lives Answers

    Have to say that I've read Newton's books years ago and kind of wondered about the content -- I wasn't really sure whether I believed this could be done under hypnosis, whether that was valid or not. After listening to this actual regression I now have a big question mark over this area. The recorded regression just sounded kind of unconvincing to me -- it kind of has a "new age" ring to it that makes me doubt it. It would be interesting to hear what others make of it.

    EDIT: I just did some research myself and found out that the regressionist in the recording is one Nancy Canning. She was certified by Newton and helped in founding the Society for Spiritual Regression (which later became The Newton Institute). Nancy's published bio can be seen here: http://nancycanning.com/about/

    For folks looking for a certified Newton Institute regressionist (other than Nancy Canning) they can be found here: https://www.newtoninstitute.org/ (I suppose folks on this forum already know this.)
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2018
  20. Michael Patterson

    Michael Patterson New

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    Interesting thoughts above. It is fair to ask whether 'normal' life to paranormal experiences offer valued input. My sense is that we get what we need at an individual level. So sometimes being decent husband and father is more important than having a OBE. I don't think having an OBE can ever be more important than being a husband and father - it can be important as well.

    So when we are ready to go beyond our 'normal' opportunities to look in the right direction open up.

    But on the other hand I was a complete screw up in my early life when my paranormal experiences were most intense. The paranormal dominated and my efforts to be a decent human being came second - and suffered accordingly. I don't think there is any was formulaic explanation beyond saying people have what they have and go where they are going. That is to say there is no point in judging or contesting.

    No matter who we are and where we come from out shared point of reference is this forum. Personally I find it humbling to read of the depth and diversity of thought and sentiment that is expressed here. It is also extraordinary to me that a community of strangers can craft a shared conversation that stimulating and valued as a source of inspiration and reflection.

    In essence it seems that regardless of who we are and what our experiences and desires are this kind of conversation delivers what we need to meet our own needs.

    It seems that experiences and notions come when we need them. Some people read on OBEs for years and never have a lucid experience. I had one powerful and lucid OBE after reading Robert Monroe's first book. It was as if, okay you have had the confirmation, now don't expect any subsequent indulgence. My partner, on the other hand, had multiple experiences. I know others who have tried to have OBEs for ages, following all the methods they could find, but to no avail. Others get it first go, even without trying.

    And we can't be confident about what may or may not happen. Monroe went from being a passably normal bloke to fearing his life had turned to shit before he grasped that OBEs were a legit thing. And on the other hadn't people dedicated to woo or the paranormal or the magical can put in lots of effort and get crappy results.

    Years ago I ended up in a serious dispute with an international occult organisation over questions about people telling huge fibs. It got very serious and almost ugly. I got expelled. I had issues with a lack of moral integrity and spiritual focus. My guidance on the matter said that that particular path was not for me. Yes it has opened up a lot of things for me, but it was time for me to let it go. Looking back, there were things I could have done better and smarter. There was a lot of growth in the experience for me. But it was a kind of 'gateway' experience for me, not a destination.

    That experience rankled with me for decades. It was a constant spur to my own maturation because I was always going back to it and finding things to think deeper on.

    I am hard on Shermer. I think he is playing a game, and mistakes that game for reality. I have no interest in his game, but I have a huge interest in his 'mistake'. Am I being harsh and unkind?

    The guy being the best husband and father he can be limits his conduct and thought to attain his objectives. He can achieve those goals by affirming his own values and not by denigrating others. This is not what Shermer is doing. He is covering his eyes and his ears to avoid stimuli to growth. He wants to stay where he is. He has drawn the line in his existential sandbox as if it is a map of reality and not merely a line in a personal sandbox.

    I get the personal opinion. I don't get the presumption that other people should agree with it because it expresses a definite and authoritative point of view. Its not. It just the opinion of a man who has contrived to be prominent. It is a POV that is not well informed and not well thought through. It has no particular merit that marks it out as better than mine or yours.

    I try to think of Shermer as somebody who is growing through his experience. But I struggle to be kind. Its a pity he does not have the humility, guts and integrity to participate in this forum.
     
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