Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

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rachMiel
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Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rachMiel » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:04 pm

This is a bit off-topic, but I'd love to see what the keen and open minds of this forum make of it.

------------------------------------------

Wikipedia saith:

"Pseudoscience is a claim, belief, or practice which is presented as scientific, but does not adhere to a valid scientific method, lacks supporting evidence or plausibility, cannot be reliably tested, or otherwise lacks scientific status."

Things usually categorized as pseudoscience include: alchemy, astrology, cold fusion, ESP, hauntings, possession, poltergeists, intelligent design, orgone energy, the morphogenetic field, chi, and so on. To see more, just research New Age practices or browse through the Fortean Times.

Being a "There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy" kind of guy, I don't trust (hard) science to be the final judge of what is and what is not true/real. At the same time, I recognize the tendency for humans to create all manner of stories (fictions) and then believe in them and profess/defend them as non-fictional, indisputable, etched-in-stone true.

So what's a human to do?

How can one know, with reasonable certainty, whether a given pseudoscientific "fact" is, in fact, true or not? Absent empirical proof, is one's intuition the best lie detector?
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by Webwanderer » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:33 pm

I wouldn't recommend putting much stake in what you read in Wikipedia. It's not a particularly reliable source of accurate information. It's just someone's opinion like anything else. There are gatekeepers who decide what gets presented, and they have agendas of their own.

How can one know, with reasonable certainty, whether a given pseudoscientific "fact" is, in fact, true or not? Absent empirical proof, is one's intuition the best lie detector?
You will know less about what concerns you from mental analysis than you will from your feeling sense of what interests you. But reliability in feelings takes a bit of getting used to. Conditioned mental thought structures can trigger emotions and give a muddy reading as compared to that sense of things one gets when in a practiced and familiar state of calm and clear presence. But once one is clear in their sense of inner guidance - how something feels, it becomes a trusted methodology in what is the best course to follow. Mind still plays an important role, and is quite valuable when applied judiciously, but recognizing truth is not an analytical process. Truth is most clearly known in how it feels.

WW

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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by smiileyjen101 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:00 pm

Being a "There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy" kind of guy, I don't trust (hard) science to be the final judge of what is and what is not true/real. At the same time, I recognize the tendency for humans to create all manner of stories (fictions) and then believe in them and profess/defend them as non-fictional, indisputable, etched-in-stone true.
Understand firstly 'science' per se knows it is in the field/s of discovering/qualifying/quantifying what is 'already there' and not yet proven. In essence they work in fields where they 'know' something is happening, but they don't (yet) know what that is or how it works, until they do.

Skepticism with a k is described as "the doctrines or opinions of philosophical Skeptics, especially the doctrine that a true knowledge of things is impossible or that all knowledge is uncertain."
From one perspective this is a healthy start. If however skeptics or science start to deny the existence of an experience of a thing, then they are straying into muddy water outside of their own ability to understand an experience - forgetting the 'whose is this' notion.

In another thread I posted a thing that touched my heart and soul, it said - what we don't know we fear, what we fear we seek to destroy... and sometimes this is very true in matters not known or understood through lack of personal experience.

We could, if we strictly adhered to scientific knowledge not 'recreate' many of the aspects of the personal experiences of love. So some could claim there is no such thing, or that it's a distortion of biological impulses, yet most who have personally experienced love would know that there are some aspects of it that 'knowledge' about love, as a measurable thing 'is uncertain' at best.

The greatest percentage (thought to be 95%) of our known universe and every atom within it is an unknown quantity/quality of energy they currently call 'dark energy' or 'dark matter' and it's only called 'dark' because it is thought not to be 'light' according to our quantified knowledge. Within this scientists know there are more questions than they have answers. An eminent scientist said in a personal email to me that it is tempting to think that “dark matter” is what the soul or spirit is made of, but whether or not that turns out to be the case, the least one can say is that the presence of dark matter shows how little we understand about our universe.

So if 95% of the entire universe and everything within it is composed of dark matter/energy, about which we know virtually nothing, how then can we claim to know with any certainty what the universe is, is like, and what is possible to experience and quantify/qualify in a life within it?

Rather than fall to arrogance that one perspective of a thing is the only possible rational, reasonable, perspective of a thing I find it better to recognise things by perspectives, rather than rely on only one perspective. Take any ordinary known object and show it from different 'points from which to view (it)' and you will get many different understandings of 'what it is' and what the experience of it is. View anything you viewed as 'big' as a child, as an adult and you will likely have a different perspective.

Which in an ET sense is kind of why holding onto any particular experience and naming it as the 'all' of a thing/person/experience, is pretty much flawed from the start, certainly too flawed to hold onto and hold as the truth, whole truth and nothing but the truth enough to make it an enemy or obstacle to continuing to participate in the wonders of life.
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rachMiel » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:23 pm

Webwanderer wrote:You will know less about what concerns you from mental analysis than you will from your feeling sense of what interests you. But reliability in feelings takes a bit of getting used to. Conditioned mental thought structures can trigger emotions and give a muddy reading as compared to that sense of things one gets when in a practiced and familiar state of calm and clear presence. But once one is clear in their sense of inner guidance - how something feels, it becomes a trusted methodology in what is the best course to follow. Mind still plays an important role, and is quite valuable when applied judiciously, but recognizing truth is not an analytical process. Truth is most clearly known in how it feels.
That's how it usually works for me: I go by feeling.

My brother, the scientist, often challenges me by asking: What if your feelings are wrong? For example, a Christian might not only believe but *feel* that there is a Heaven and that certain rules must be followed to get there. It might be as real to this person as the feeling of his/her own body.

I'm not saying feeling isn't a good way to go in these matters. (For me it's the best.) Rather, that feelings can deceive, can make fiction seem like fact.
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by smiileyjen101 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:50 pm

:wink: I was going to respond to this in two parts anyway, and just before submitting the one above saw Webby's answer to the other notion I was going to respond to -
How can one know, with reasonable certainty, whether a given pseudoscientific "fact" is, in fact, true or not? Absent empirical proof, is one's intuition the best lie detector?
You will know less about what concerns you from mental analysis than you will from your feeling sense of what interests you. But reliability in feelings takes a bit of getting used to. Conditioned mental thought structures can trigger emotions and give a muddy reading as compared to that sense of things one gets when in a practiced and familiar state of calm and clear presence. But once one is clear in their sense of inner guidance - how something feels, it becomes a trusted methodology in what is the best course to follow. Mind still plays an important role, and is quite valuable when applied judiciously, but recognizing truth is not an analytical process. Truth is most clearly known in how it feels.

WW
I would still go on the notion that the parameters of 'reasonable certainty' is imprecise at best, and agree with Webby that 'reliability in feelings takes a bit of getting used to' and even then that's not to say perspectives or nuances of understanding a thing is finite in the sense of the be all and end all of a thing. So accepting that even personal knowledge and experience is a 'limited' perspective.

It's why I spend a lot of time in Radio LWAS (let's wait and see) frequency, unfolding knowledge has unknown start and end points.

Within that however you can learn to 'discern' things with and by a resonance, no different really to how science does, but it's not finite, it never is/can be.
is one's intuition the best lie detector?
A few years ago I would have said 'absolutely' to this notion. These days because of unfolding knowledge I'd say yes it 'may' be the best we have access to, but there are flaws in it that we are wise to take notice of :wink:

For instance as you've used lie detector I'll take it to its literal meaning. As a person sensitive and through experience learned to recognise the resonances of different sorts of lies, I thought I had an internal 'lie detector' right there inside me. It worked brilliantly for all the lies that unfolded as lies that then became 'proven'. Even ones I didn't even know were lies unuttered, because I'd instead gone straight to the perspective of the resonances of a 'truth' that might not have been 'known' to others, or might have been 'hidden' by those emitting the energies.

With maturity I learned not to 'judge' a lie, or even a resonant 'truth' because they are always unfolding within particular perspectives of a thing.

Scientifically lie detectors are able to 'measure' changes in physiology in one telling or evaluating a lie.

But, there are flaws in the system, which now has the once thought to be the be all and end all of lie detection /truth knowing, being known as not being accurate in some circumstances - and this goes for our intuitive 'lie detector' as well.

As yet I may not have discovered all of them, I have however found some.

Some lies are told (signalled) without the presence of changes in physiology in the one telling the lie, or evaluating information for truth or untruth, even if they are telling a lie to them self.

As this knowledge is unfolding some of the nuances of it include
- if they have no sense of responsibility to tell the truth - lie detectors mechanical and biological measure elements of discomfort. A sociopath simply experiences no discomfort in telling lie, they think it's 'normal' and for them, it is normal to not feel discomfort when they tell a known untruth.

- if they to the best of their ability/knowledge believe consistently mentally and biologically a lie to be a truth - lie detectors mechanical and biological measure discord in degrees of distance between what is known to be true, and what is known to be false - one who believes a lie to be true will not experience any discord. The 'base' of a 'truth' is usually 'measured' and set as the 'base line' for energy levels. A person can also screw up the frequency stuff by being extremely emotional or reactive across all questions, it 'confuses' the reading.

- if the question is not like an arrowhead on a required specific positive/negative (yes/no) distribution of energies - very little is actually 100% positive/affirmative and any 'doubt' as to the certainty creates energy waves of its own.

The resonance of someone citing an opinion/perspective as a fact/determination sends all the measuring equipment into a spin.

The thing is, there is no 'one brush suits all' people or experiences. We all are experiencers experimenting and learning along the way. Whether we are doing this awarely or not creates a difference in the experience.
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by karmarider » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:57 pm

Agree with WW on both: wikipedia is opinion; and go by intuition.

I do like science. Science knows its limits (even if many scientists do not), and it's fun and interesting. But I don't rely on it for clarity.

I agree with what's said already: I use my intuition. I try to be aware of the fallacy of attachment to hard mental positions. The mind must co-operate and align of course, but mental analysis is not it. Something else is going on, and it's not clear what that something else is.

And so I go by intuition and experience, and try to remain open to be being wrong.

And as Jen points out in her usually gentle way, that too is not completely reliable. Fear and layers of delusion and the delusion of "having figured it out" do come into play.

That's disturbing if the objective is to settle on one final truth. But if objective is simply to have a very satisfying life, it's part of the resonance.

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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rachMiel » Fri Jul 27, 2012 12:40 am

There seems to be some agreement as to how to judge the validity of a scientific claim:

Remain open; don't be too quick to reach a verdict.
Let your intuition guide you, but know that your intuition might not be right.
Take all of the findings ("truths") of science/pseudoscience with a healthy grain of salt.
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by smiileyjen101 » Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:45 am

Fear and layers of delusion and the delusion of "having figured it out" do come into play.

That's disturbing if the objective is to settle on one final truth.

But if objective is simply to have a very satisfying life, it's part of the resonance.
It can also swing the other way... sometimes ignorance might really be the bliss :wink:
By the time I finish my life on this planet I may have learned (but I doubt it :lol: ) to say nothing at all.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UgcxGFmYyPs
( I know nothing, I see nothing, I was never here, I did not even get up this morning!)

...
Here's an example of ...something happened... what the heck was it?
I 'learned' huge things from it, and it can only really be expressed as an experience from one perspective, in narrative story form. I've been able to dissect and put this one back together so it's 'fuller' than it was at the time and for me it's my constant reminder of trying to stay out of what is 'none of my business' and realising half the time I don't even know what 'my business' is anyway. (hence the reminder in my tagline).

I was at a party once with colleagues of my then partner. I was being introduced to some people in a group, and simultaneously scanning the room for any other familiar faces and taking the 'scene' in. I'm not (usually) a total ditz in social situations, but have absolutely been known to drop my labrador puppy clangers if I'm not 'careful' so being aware of the 'scene' can be important. The atmosphere was pretty nice and I was relaxed and open as I was kind of 'finding my place' in it.

As I was being introduced to a lady in the group standing next to a wide column, we'll call her abc, I noticed in my peripheral vision a guy I'll call xyz looking in our direction and smiling openly. Xyz is a real sweetheart, open, kind, loving, child-like if a little 'naughty' at times, but without malice and we'd known him over a number of years in and out of relationships yet primarily a bachelor. A few of us would often wonder if he would ever find a partner that would add that element of joy to his life.

I thought for a nano-second his smiling looking in our direction was recognition of me and my partner arriving and turned to smile back.
Then I 'noticed' the true resonance of his smiling attention was not really on us, but on this lady I'd just been introduced to and it was pure joy, intimacy, excitement, romance, thrill - type energy. It was really lovely so I looked again at this lady...
- think unleashed bounding labrador puppy taking over here now - :shock:
I - in the energy of this open 'flow' from him to her was genuinely pleased to meet her and smiling said "Nice to meet you, how long have you been with xyz?" and nodded in his direction, she turned and saw him, to which he smiled, and she freaked.

Now if disappointment is in the distance between expectation and reality... :lol:

That she was 'with' xyz was not even a possibility of not being 'true' in my humble experience.
The flow of energy stimuli between them was at like openness and flow - as he was looking at her 'feeling' as he was feeling, she wouldn't even have to be looking at him to feel it, she was buzzing and sending it right back to him without even turning in his direction, and it was not 'intention' it was 'actual' energy flow, there's a difference, so I guess I thought I was pretty safe in 'stating the obvious' and moving the conversation forward from there.

:oops: ummm.. no. At that moment of her freaking inside, my then partner kind of 'riled up' as I'd made a social faux pas & his sense of his own worth included what others thought of me. She was flustered and stammering out resonant lies of denial in the face of the 'obvious', xyz was still smiling at us oblivious to the unfoldings and right then a man's head popped around the column with a sort of bemused energy and smile and my then partner huffily said :"this, is mno - abc's husband."

( :roll: Ooops) Hi, how are you?
To abc - sorry I must have gotten confused about something.
(Excuse me a moment while I change feet in my mouth.)

It's funny in situations like this I just completely 'shut down', turn it and me 'off' and I have no idea although I'm sure I responded 'more appropriately' to whatever was 'actually said' for the rest of the evening.

A few days later we heard that abc and xyz actually were/are 'together' and abc had now informed her husband of her change of heart.

I learned soooo much from those very few seconds of open flow 'interpretation', not least to 'check' if anyone else could 'see' the bleeding obvious before opening my mouth as if 'everyone' can see it and knows that it can be seen. It's not my response ability to illuminate anyone or everyone's 'truths' or lies and sometimes you can stumble into them accidentally.

Just as the all does not judge that which is unfolding eternally, neither does awareness.

I also learned to know that I was just as 'blind' to some things that others could see plainly.

Where then is fact or fiction in any of this?

Maybe we're not supposed to 'know everything' or even all sides of anything.
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by Webwanderer » Fri Jul 27, 2012 3:53 am

Here is a suggestion on the nature of one's feel for the truth. It's not so much feeling what truth is as it is feeling the direction from which truth emanates. Truth is ever expanding so there is no way to accurately and fully say 'this is the truth'. It seems there is always a greater truth that transcends, and is inclusive of, whatever new revelation may come to us. It may be that something is true relative to some previous understanding, but there is likely a good deal more yet to perceive. Feeling the expansiveness that comes from greater understanding is the most reliable guide and is a gift inherent in our essential nature.

The problem with science it that it deals only with a materialistic universe. Physics = physical. But check your sense of things. Is there something more basic than what is physical? More basic than atoms? Does consciousness not transcend physical? What is your feeling, your sense of it? Then consider quantum physics. This new 'science' has stood materialism on its head. It has now been demonstrated that there is no such thing as physical, it's all just energy - and is susceptible to conscious focus. There is only a perception of life being physical, and now we're back to consciousness.

So what is the more productive pursuit? Study through science, or study consciousness? If you are trying to understand plate tectonics or the temperature of the sun, science may be better suited. If you want to understand life and the nature of being, studying consciousness seems the wiser choice. And the most useful tool and guide in studying consciousness is our very own feeling nature. Even the best of neuroscience has no greater tools for the study of consciousness than our own perception.

WW

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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by HermitLoon » Fri Jul 27, 2012 3:54 pm

"Truth" and "Reality" are whatever a conditioned mind thinks is true/real - and they are not universal and not absolute.
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rideforever » Fri Jul 27, 2012 7:43 pm

Science doesn't actually exist for the simple reason that there are no scientists : because a human cannot be 'objective'. QED.

WAIT ! I know you are in hurry to read the rest of the post - be really reflect on this. Science is supposed to be objective, but all scientists are not-objective. It's a huge problem isn't it.

But people just ignore this, like they ignore the results of quantum physics, and just carry on.

Will you ignore simple facts like this and just carry on ? Are you just a sheep with no brain ???

A human will stand in front of you and tell you with his chest puffed his theory and swear with full confidence that it is true. But upon asking him some questions you will see that he hasn't done any research on the matter.

It's important to really understand this fact - because if you really understand that you will understand that nothing that anybody says means very much. Nobody has made any effort to research very much, check his facts or whatever. And still - they stand in front of you telling you what's what with full confidence.

You can read a scientific theory - what difference does it make ? One day the old-men-scientist-folks are going to announce that they have discovered the grand unification theory of everything; and just like the 'discovery' of the Higgs Boson last month - it's not gonna make any difference. Just really ponder that. One day it will be announced on TV - "we have cracked it - now we understand everything", the scientists will announce. And nothing is going to change.

Socrates after a life of thinking said "the only thing I know is that I know nothing". Don't ignore him. Reflect on what it means when the smartest man on the planet at the end of his life says that. He is talking to you.

How to become awakened ? I don't think many people really understand what a total disaster mankind is, how deep the pit is, and so how great awakening is.

A typical person is such a disaster inside. There is no person in fact for the majority, there is no-one home ... just a sort of mechanism going from pain to pleasure, from birth to death, with no understanding or meaning. The light hasn't been switched on.

When people join the spiritual path most are looking for a kind of lottery win. They haven't quite realised that even after you win the lottery you are still a pauper.

Buddhists used to watch dead people burn on the ghats as an effort to wake themselves the f*** up.

When you sit with some friends next time ... visualise their skeletons in their bodies as they talk to you.

I recently heard that Buddhism may be an extraterrestrial technology. Once upon a time I would have thought this far fetched. But not any more.

The universe is a vast mystery. My existence is a vast mystery.

You must dig deep to wake up. You must burn to be alive to be awake. Or you won't be.
I was proud, and I demanded the finest teacher
.. .. and when he appeared
.. .. .. .. I was so small

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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rideforever » Fri Jul 27, 2012 7:53 pm

I was proud, and I demanded the finest teacher
.. .. and when he appeared
.. .. .. .. I was so small

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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by ashley72 » Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:22 pm

Science isn't bull crap. But it has Limitations like all things.

If you look at things like Quantum Physics which studies the building blocks of Reality. You see the fork in the road which arises when the theory runs out of good experimental data. The wave-particle duality is a perfect example.

I believe that the fundamental electron is purely made of a wave structure. However, mainstream science will tell you otherwise, that it's made up of some strange particle-wave duality which is completely absurd and goes against common sense. If you start to study historically why mainstream science got to absurd conclusion... you will see that it comes from old thinking patterns (beliefs) which are hard to shift. For example atomic physics has been modelled on the way the planet and stars seemed to interact. Fields, spherical shapes, orbits etc. When in fact more experimental evidence points to a wave structure (Young's Experiment).

This video demonstrates the paradox.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfPeprQ7 ... ata_player

Scientist Milo Wolff offers the most plausible answer.

http://quantummatter.com/articles/see_an_electron.html

What Electron may look like as a wave structure.

Image
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rachMiel » Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:31 pm

ashley72 wrote:Science isn't bull crap. But it has Limitations like all things.
Yes.
... which is completely absurd and goes against common sense.
Common sense, like intuition, isn't infallible, right? Especially when you move towards the extremes (which is where it gets imo really interesting!). For example, when you enter the realm of the very very small (quantum physics), intuition -- which is largely based on what we know and can perceive -- is pretty wobbly.
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Re: Pseudoscience: Separating fact from fiction

Post by rideforever » Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:52 pm

Isn't since bullcrap ?

I really wonder. You talk about electrons ... do you know what an 'electron' is ? It's a MODEL. It's not reality.

[ Yeah - nice picture. Why don't you just go and watch TV for the next 50 years and then it will be over !!! ]

If science creates lots of things that aren't reality - is that any good ?

"Of course, because science makes people live longer and we have technology" ... oh really - is that a good thing ? Is anyone even awake in this world ?

It seems to me that people who think that science is worthwhile just don't have the imagination to understand the scale of the mankind's delusion.

What difference does it make if you live longer if you don't exist inside ? And most people don't.

How many people even notice that there is a BIG PROBLEM ! Not many.

You know it has been 2000 years since Buddha. 2000 years of wasting time. Science is just one of those things we waste time on.

2000 years when the Buddha's message has been ignored.

I am interested if anyone has a reason that I am wrong about this ... but all you have to say is that life is better with a Samsung Galaxy 3, then I am not interested.
I was proud, and I demanded the finest teacher
.. .. and when he appeared
.. .. .. .. I was so small

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