Mod+ 270. ASU PROF. LAWRENCE KRAUSS CALLS FOR DALAI LAMA TO STEP DOWN OVER REINCARNATION CLAIM

#22
I think I heard him say basically there's no evidence for "souls etc."
This is a recurring theme...

The nature of evidence
http://www.uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/a-final-word-on-evidence

In several posts last month Dr. Torley and I led a spirited discussion on the nature of “evidence.” See here, here, here and here. Those discussions revealed there is a lot of confusion about this topic. This is especially the case when it comes to the purpose of evidence. Many of our materialist friends seem to believe that unless evidence compels belief it does not count as evidence at all. Worse, they seem to believe that merely by advancing an alternative explanation for some proposition, they have caused all of the evidence for the explanation advanced by their opponents to magically turn into non-evidence. This is simply not the case.

Let’s go back to the dictionary. Evidence is “the available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid.”

The critical word there is “indicating.” To be evidence a fact need merely indicate that a proposition is true. It need not compel belief in the proposition. As I stated in one of my posts, a jury trial is a good example of this. In every jury trial both sides submit evidence to the jury. But in every jury trial only one side wins. Does that mean the losing side’s evidence was not evidence because the jury did not believe it? Of course not. Again, evidence “indicates.” It does not compel.
...
A word of advice to our atheist interlocutors. You are entitled logically to say to a theist, “In my judgment your evidence is unpersuasive.” But you cannot logically say “I have defined your evidence as non-evidence merely because I found it unpersuasive.”
...
Why am I belaboring this point? Because I hope our arguments with atheists on this site will be challenging and interesting. And responding to stupid arguments like “there is absolutely no evidence for the existence of God” is tedious and boring.
http://www.uncommondescent.com/reli...al-evidence-and-the-reasonableness-of-theism/

Simon Greenleaf, in the opening chapter of his treatise on evidence (where, such of course includes eyewitness testimony and record of same):

Evidence, in legal acceptation, includes all the means by which any alleged matter of fact, the truth of which is submitted to investigation, is established or disproved . . . None but mathematical truth is susceptible of that high degree of evidence, called demonstration, which excludes all possibility of error [--> Greenleaf wrote almost 100 years before Godel], and which, therefore, may reasonably be required in support of every mathematical deduction.
...
Matters of fact are proved by moral evidence alone; by which is meant, not only that kind of evidence which is employed on subjects connected with moral conduct, but all the evidence which is not obtained either from intuition, or from demonstration. In the ordinary affairs of life, we do not require demonstrative evidence, because it is not consistent with the nature of the subject, and to insist upon it would be unreasonable and absurd.
...
The most that can be affirmed of such things, is, that there is no reasonable doubt concerning them.
...
The true question, therefore, in trials of fact, is not whether it is possible that the testimony may be false, but, whether there is sufficient probability of its truth; that is, whether the facts are shown by competent and satisfactory evidence. Things established by competent and satisfactory evidence are said to be proved.
...
By competent evidence, is meant that which the very-nature of the thing to be proved requires, as the fit and appropriate proof in the particular case, such as the production of a writing, where its contents are the subject of inquiry. By satisfactory evidence, which is sometimes called sufficient evidence, is intended that amount of proof, which ordinarily satisfies an unprejudiced mind, beyond reasonable doubt.
...
The circumstances which will amount to this degree of proof can never be previously defined; the only legal test of which they are susceptible, is their sufficiency to satisfy the mind and conscience of a common man; and so to convince him, that he would venture to act upon that conviction, in matters of the highest concern and importance to his own interest. [A Treatise on Evidence, Vol I, 11th edn. (Boston: Little, Brown, 1888) ch 1., sections 1 and 2. Shorter paragraphs added. (NB: Greenleaf was a founder of the modern Harvard Law School and is regarded as a founding father of the modern Anglophone school of thought on evidence, in large part on the strength of this classic work.)]
 
Last edited:
#23
I guess I think about Krauss what he thinks about the Dalai Lama. In fact, I'm a little surprised that Tsakiris would give such utterly stupid materialist-babble a venue.
 
#24
Radin is part of the problem not part of the solution, he published in a peer-reviewed medical journal that NDEs can be explained by ESP not disembodied consciousness.
Isn't that part of the research?
Similarly Braude is pretty critical with some of his colleagues.

I think that's just part of the process. Once you get past the materialist borders you're immediately confronted with a number of dilemmas such as what constitutes evidence for independent disembodied agents and what might be caused by the living... Etc...

At least those three (since I mentioned them) engage with the evidence. That I call "moving forward".
 
#25
can you pls give me a reference to this.
http://deanradin.blogspot.com/2014/...howComment=1397862223769#c8247669098282307934
I was invited to write an article on this topic for Missouri Medicine, a peer-reviewed medical journal published by the Missouri State Medical Association. You can read the journal online here: http://www.omagdigital.com/publication?i=177483. See the Sept/Oct issue for the beginning of a series of articles on NDEs.

My article was published in a 2014 issue, so it isn't available online yet. The bottom line of my argument was that the primary anomalies associated with NDEs are reports of veridical perceptions that could not have been known or inferred from the perspective of the patient.

For someone who is not familiar with clairvoyance, this type of report could be taken as evidence that the mind has literally separated from the body (i.e., gone OBE). The literal interpretation is consistent with survival of consciousness. But veridical reports of distant events is virtually the same as what we know as clairvoyance-in-the-living. So the OBE aspects of NDEs do not necessarily imply an actual separation from the body, and hence NDEs can be interpreted as a particularly vivid form of clairvoyance in brains that are not operating normally.

Friday, April 18, 2014


Anyone who thinks veridical perceptions are the "primary anomalies" of a phenomenon where a person is conscious when there is no electrical activity in the brain doesn't understand the phenomenon.


....

Dean Radin wrote:
http://deanradin.blogspot.com/2014/...howComment=1397671552280#c7109696302339332504

But until we find evidence that memory is not brain-centric, and that it too can persist without a body, then the question about precisely *what* survives remains unresolved.
I would like to hear a show with Dean Randin and Chris Carter discussing the evidence for the survival of consciousness after death. Chris Carter thinks the evidence is compelling and that to deny it is pseudoscience. Dean Radin thinks the evidence for the afterlife consists of theoretical arguments, anecdotes, and case studies and that there is no evidence that memory can persist without a body.

Chris Carter:
Subversive Thinking

In my work I present the evidence that provides a prima facie case for survival [of consciousness]; demonstrate that alternative explanations, to the extent that they are testable, have been proven false; and then argue that to the extent these alternative explanations are not testable (such as elaborate fraud scenarios, or super-ESP) they are pseudo-scientific excuses for refusing to accept an otherwise straightforward inference from the evidence.

Dean Radin
While the evidence for survival is certainly intriguing, that type of survival is usually considered survival of personality. But until we find evidence that memory is not brain-centric, and that it too can persist without a body, then the question about precisely *what* survives remains unresolved.

Dean Radin:

Given the biasing nature of prior beliefs, my opinion about such matters is to maintain as close to a neutral, agnostic position as possible. This way beliefs can shift based on reasoned evidence. I personally place greater weight on evidence from credibly conducted laboratory tests than on theoretical arguments, anecdotes, or case studies.
I think it would be extremely interesting to hear Chris Carter reply to Radin's assessment of the evidence for the afterlife as a collection of theoretical arguments, anecdotes, and case studies and that there is no evidence that memory can persist without a body.

I think Radin, and other parapsychologist, are too quick to dismiss the work of researchers who use different methods of scientific analysis and do not give those researchers and their conclusions enough credit.
...

I'll also point out that parapsychologists can be guilty of crushing souls too.
http://deanradin.blogspot.com/2014/...howComment=1397862223769#c8247669098282307934
Dean Radin said...
...
the primary anomalies associated with NDEs are reports of veridical perceptions that could not have been known or inferred from the perspective of the patient.
...
the OBE aspects of NDEs do not necessarily imply an actual separation from the body, and hence NDEs can be interpreted as a particularly vivid form of clairvoyance in brains that are not operating normally
(Anyone who thinks clairvoyance is the primary anomaly of a phenomenon where a person with no electrical activity in the brain is conscious, doesn't fully understand the phenomenon.)


http://deanradin.blogspot.com/2014/...howComment=1397671552280#c7109696302339332504
But until we find evidence that memory is not brain-centric, and that it too can persist without a body, then the question about precisely *what* survives remains unresolved.
 
Last edited:
#26
Isn't that part of the research?
Similarly Braude is pretty critical with some of his colleagues.

I think that's just part of the process. Once you get past the materialist borders you're immediately confronted with a number of dilemmas such as what constitutes evidence for independent disembodied agents and what might be caused by the living... Etc...

At least those three (since I mentioned them) engage with the evidence. That I call "moving forward".
It's a problem for people who have had an NDE and are trying to understand what they experienced. Publishing that kind of ill informed crap in a peer-reviewed medical journal is scientific malpractice. Experiencers can be psychologically harmed if health professionals tell them their experience was not real. It seems clear that Radin didn't do the most basic investigation of published research before he wrote in a field outside his area of expertise. Malpractice.
 
#27
It's a problem for people who have had an NDE and are trying to understand what they experienced. Publishing that kind of ill informed crap in a peer-reviewed medical journal is scientific malpractice. Experiencers can be psychologically harmed if health professionals tell them their experience was not real. It seems clear that Radin didn't do the most basic investigation of published research before he wrote in a field outside his area of expertise. Malpractice.
Of course Jim what you didn't mention is that Dean blocked you when you mischaracterised his arguments, and then tacitly accused him of bigotry.
 
#28
3. How can reincarnation be true when there are more people alive today than have ever lived before? (Alex doesn't know).
Couldn't it be as simple as the average human life span? Humans live longer now than ever, so longer life spans equals more people on earth at a time, since we aren't cycling through as quickly. Subsequently, that could also mean fewer lifetimes since we seem to be getting "better" at this whole "physical incarnation" thing.
 
#29
It's a problem for people who have had NDEs and are trying to understand what they experienced. Publishing that kind of ill informed crap in a peer-reviewed medical journal is scientific malpractice. Experiencers can be psychologically harmed if health professionals tell them their experience was not real.
I find your position too drastic. We need a multiplicity of opinions if we want to make sense of these sorts of phenomena. I understand your thought but you seem to be saying that Radin needs to be censored because his hypothesis doesn't conform to what other researchers have concluded. I don't think this is compatible with an open inquiry of any mystery.

I am not even sure about what article you are referring to. Care to provide the reference?
Radin compiled this list:
http://noetic.org/research/psi-research/
which contains the work of Greyson and Van Lommel, among others. He's not doing a disservice to anyone as you seem to suggest.
 
#30
I find your position too drastic. We need a multiplicity of opinions if we want to make sense of these sorts of phenomena. I understand your thought but you seem to be saying that Radin needs to be censored because his hypothesis doesn't conform to what other researchers have concluded. I don't think this is compatible with an open inquiry of any mystery.

I am not even sure about what article you are referring to. Care to provide the reference?
Radin compiled this list:
http://noetic.org/research/psi-research/
which contains the work of Greyson and Van Lommel, among others. He's not doing a disservice to anyone as you seem to suggest.
I provided a reference. It's just a few posts back (#25) in this thread.
http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threa...er-reincarnation-claim.2093/page-2#post-62880

Publishing something harmful to patients in an area outside your field of expertise in a peer-reviewed medical journal that the most basic research of publications in the field would have told you is false is scientific malpractice.
 
#32

3. How can reincarnation be true when there are more people alive today than have ever lived before? (Alex doesn't know).
That statement simply isn't true. There are fare more people who have died than are alive now. Estimates are that 100 Billion humans in their current form have lived and died so far. So that argument against reincarnation is nonsensical.
 
#36
I must say well done to Alex, it must be frustrating letting people like Shermer and more so Krauss blab on without getting worked up, I was one of the people who felt that he was too aggressive at times in other interviews. I think giving them rope to hang their views on is a better way, but it is sure as hell frustrating at times.

Getting the point across that 'this is how mainstream scientists think' is really important in my view.
 
#37
I provided a reference. It's just a few posts back (#25) in this thread.
http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threa...er-reincarnation-claim.2093/page-2#post-62880

Publishing something harmful to patients in an area outside your field of expertise in a peer-reviewed medical journal that the most basic research of publications in the field would have told you is false is scientific malpractice.
Did you actually read the article?
The reference from Radin's website does not link to the article itself.
 

Alex

Administrator
#39
That statement simply isn't true. There are fare more people who have died than are alive now. Estimates are that 100 Billion humans in their current form have lived and died so far. So that argument against reincarnation is nonsensical.
sure, but I think this kinda misses the point. I mean, Krauss' statement was pretty idiotic given that we have no understanding of how to even begin to approach these questions scientifically.
 
#40
I didn't know I was blocked. I haven't been to the site since the dispute. He must have blocked me after the last time I tried to post. But thanks for letting me know.
 
Top