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Old 12-25-2012, 03:47 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,682 posts, read 49,181,461 times
Reputation: 11862

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I had a friend once who told me some intriguing tales about the paranormal. He was a fellow university classmate, quite a bit older than me, and I actually found the fact he was so into spiritualism/the paranormal/ghosts a bit surprising since he seemed like such a rationalistic, scientific person.

Anyway he treated the existence of ghosts as fact. He said he'd often see them/or experienced them, including that of his deceased grandmother. I asked if I too could see them, and asked if he'd take me to see some of these ghosts. I forgot what he said but i don't think he thought i was serious.

Anyway, if ghosts cannot be seen by everyone, how can one be sure they are not in the mind of the one seeing them? If a skeptic paid a ghost hunter $1 million to prove the existence of ghosts, why has nobody collected the money yet? If it's a case of 'how much you believe in it' than it'll be impossible to prove.
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Old 12-25-2012, 11:31 AM
 
Location: East Germany in America
13,944 posts, read 12,128,739 times
Reputation: 11983
Mainly because science deals with what most people call "reality." It relies on observations from this "reality" and making verifiable conclusions from those observations. What you are asking is something like asking a dolphin to describe the interior of the Pentagon. It simply cannot be done because the Pentagon is not part of the dolphin's reality. It doesn't mean the Pentagon does not exist. It simply means the dolphin cannot experience it in a meaningful way.

Now, it's true that a dolphin could be taken (in a glass tank or something) into the Pentagon. Then the dolphin would know what the Pentagon's interior looked like. But once back in the sea, assuming dolphins can communicate, would that dolphin's experience be taken seriously? When no other dolphin has ever seen such a thing?

I think our ability to explain the "paranormal" (that which is beyond our reality) is about like a dolphin's ability to explain the Pentagon or the streets of NYC to its pals in the Gulf of Mexico. It's simply beyond our abilities. But it doesn't mean it's not there. Could a dolphin prove the existence of the Pentagon?

Anyway... my view on the matter.
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Old 12-25-2012, 11:54 AM
 
Location: Bel Air, California
23,572 posts, read 24,719,072 times
Reputation: 36620
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
Can any ghost-hunter prove to me, without a shadow of doubt, the existence of ghosts/spirits?....
ghosts don't have shadows
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Old 12-25-2012, 11:55 AM
 
2,538 posts, read 4,271,838 times
Reputation: 3344
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisC View Post
Mainly because science deals with what most people call "reality." It relies on observations from this "reality" and making verifiable conclusions from those observations. What you are asking is something like asking a dolphin to describe the interior of the Pentagon. It simply cannot be done because the Pentagon is not part of the dolphin's reality. It doesn't mean the Pentagon does not exist. It simply means the dolphin cannot experience it in a meaningful way.

Now, it's true that a dolphin could be taken (in a glass tank or something) into the Pentagon. Then the dolphin would know what the Pentagon's interior looked like. But once back in the sea, assuming dolphins can communicate, would that dolphin's experience be taken seriously? When no other dolphin has ever seen such a thing?

I think our ability to explain the "paranormal" (that which is beyond our reality) is about like a dolphin's ability to explain the Pentagon or the streets of NYC to its pals in the Gulf of Mexico. It's simply beyond our abilities. But it doesn't mean it's not there. Could a dolphin prove the existence of the Pentagon?

Anyway... my view on the matter.
So by your logic, the invisible dragon that lives in my garage must be real, because he exists outside of your view of reality?
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Old 12-25-2012, 01:12 PM
 
Location: East Germany in America
13,944 posts, read 12,128,739 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Velvet Jones View Post
So by your logic, the invisible dragon that lives in my garage must be real, because he exists outside of your view of reality?
In my view, I reserve judgment unless I can conclusively prove otherwise. That's how a statistical analysis works. You make no conclusion until your null hypothesis can be disproved. But that's certainly not the approach science (on the whole) takes with most paranormal topics. Interesting how science is so selective with its techniques, eh?

The question is not whether I can prove to you that ghosts exist--it's whether you can prove to me they don't. And never seeing something is not proof of its non-existence in any field of science... save the paranormal, seemingly.
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Old 12-25-2012, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Lehigh Valley, PA
2,309 posts, read 3,869,128 times
Reputation: 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I had a friend once who told me some intriguing tales about the paranormal. He was a fellow university classmate, quite a bit older than me, and I actually found the fact he was so into spiritualism/the paranormal/ghosts a bit surprising since he seemed like such a rationalistic, scientific person.

Anyway he treated the existence of ghosts as fact. He said he'd often see them/or experienced them, including that of his deceased grandmother. I asked if I too could see them, and asked if he'd take me to see some of these ghosts. I forgot what he said but i don't think he thought i was serious.

Anyway, if ghosts cannot be seen by everyone, how can one be sure they are not in the mind of the one seeing them? If a skeptic paid a ghost hunter $1 million to prove the existence of ghosts, why has nobody collected the money yet? If it's a case of 'how much you believe in it' than it'll be impossible to prove.

They do exist however I can no more prove it to you without a shadow of a doubt than you can prove to me that there isn't.

Tell ya what, let's both kill ourselves and see, the first person back here will have the absolute proof needed either way.
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Old 12-25-2012, 02:03 PM
 
Location: East Germany in America
13,944 posts, read 12,128,739 times
Reputation: 11983
Quote:
Originally Posted by julian17033 View Post
They do exist however I can no more prove it to you without a shadow of a doubt than you can prove to me that there isn't.

Tell ya what, let's both kill ourselves and see, the first person back here will have the absolute proof needed either way.
Sounds a bit extreme.
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Old 12-25-2012, 02:42 PM
 
Location: In the realm of possiblities
2,713 posts, read 2,488,966 times
Reputation: 3256
ChrisC pretty much nailed it. My wife and I lived in a house, and saw and heard things that we have never been able to explain, but to try to describe them to other people that have never experienced what we did was very difficult. After telling one or two folks, we decided that what happened was our reality, and we knew what we saw, and that was enough for us. I had a friend that one day called me, and began relating a story about how he was walking in the yard behind his house, and saw a flash, then blacked out. When he came to, he made the assumption that he had probably been hit by lightning. We talked about it a bit, and to me, it sounded as if it could have been a lightning strike that caused his event, but,then, never having never been struck by lightning, the story seemed a bit foreign to me. It's not that I didn't believe him since I had known him almost 20 years, and we had done many things together at work, and in our free time, but it was the concept of the whole event that I could not relate to. It doesn't mean that ghosts, or spirit activity isn't real, it simply means if it hasn't happened to the person I'm relating a story to about one of my experiences, then they might find it difficult to decide the validity of my experience.
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Old 12-25-2012, 04:56 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,682 posts, read 49,181,461 times
Reputation: 11862
Well I get subjectivity, but what thousands of people claim to experience can be objectively verified. Poltergeists, for instance. I've seen photos of moving objects.etc in the internet, some do look convincing, but of course there'll always be scientists who think trickery is involved. It still shouldn't, however, be too hard to get say a dish to levitate in thin air in front of someone's eyes. Of course that's if we assume the ghouls are actually cooperating. Perhaps they want to sow uncertainty about their existence in us lol.
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Old 12-25-2012, 09:13 PM
 
Location: Sinking in the Great Salt Lake
13,145 posts, read 20,443,800 times
Reputation: 14042
Apparently ghosts are personally offended and refuse to show if you try to put them in test-tubes.

Seriously though... if there are intelligent, sentient minds behind the phenomenon which can flit in and out of our reality on a whim and don't want to be found nor have any compunction to do things on our terms, is any surprise there is no hard proof of their existence?

Anyway, seeing is believing and I would be a unbeliever if I hadn't seen what I have. Hardcore skeptics are welcome to be skeptical (hell, I take a lot of flack for being a skeptic around here!) but new arrivals to "the club" need to know they aren't crazy just because they experienced something that shouldn't be. It turns out there is more to "everything" than we thought, that's all.
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