Tuesday, March 28, 2023

The Article "Ghost 'sightings,' as explained by science" Debunked by Myself and Inadvertently the Original Author Too!


“Ghosts are real” is an extremely common belief — one held by 45 percent of Americans, according to a recent
 YouGov poll. That’s just slightly less than the percentage (56) of Americans who believe in a biblical God, according to the Pew Research Center.

But what about the rest of the country? That would be the skeptics, in varying degrees. Yahoo Lifestyle turned to several, with backgrounds in psychology and an interest in the paranormal, to find some reasonable explanations for when people say they see, hear, feel or otherwise experience hauntings.

We’re far from the first to look for answers.

“For over 200 years, many people, even scientists, have sought evidence for ghosts and life after death,” writes Sharon A. Hill, a paranormal researcher and author of Scientifical Americans: The Culture of Amateur Paranormal Researchers, in a recent blog. “There are millions of pages of previous research and experimentation into paranormal ideas. Definite proof has never been found.”

But according to Benjamin Radford, author of Investigating Ghosts: The Scientific Search for Spirits, logical explanations are abundant. “There are various reasons why people experience ghosts — or, more correctly, experience what they interpreted as ghosts.”


I did read on, but I need not read any other person's interpretation of someone else's ghostly experiences to refute this tripe. Why? Well, first off  because "a subjective claim cannot be proved right or wrong by any generally accepted criteria." So, generally positing that people incorrectly interpreted a hypothetical paranormal event is pointless. Yes, people can work themselves up because of a haunted location's reputation or can mistake or miss altogether prosaic explanations, etc. They can also be level headed, scientifically minded, and careful in their investigation and yet still swear they saw a ghost! 

Nope, I'm afraid each extraordinary claim must be evaluated on its own merits and requires in-depth research, not handwaving strawmen. I will elaborate more on that in a bit, but since we kicked off this exercise with a broad brush, I too will first humor and then sadden the faces of my pseudo-skeptic foes by taking a better look at the broad and universally accepted facts, that heavily favors an extraordinary reality. 

The article in question, as you may recall, begins by noting, 
"'Ghosts are real' is an extremely common belief." Well, to put it simply, maybe that's because they are!? :) Funny stuff though, because paranormal/conspiracy "debunker" types, AKA the duh-bunk-turds, heavily rely on appeals to authority and consensus reality. Deep thinker and funnyman George Carlin, wisely knew that blindly going along with the commonly accepted narrative of the day, was a deeply flawed way of looking to find objective reality/truth...

The duh-bunk-turds are nothing if not ardent defenders of the status quo and the establishment, so they inevitably miss that which is intentionally misleading. Some might even argue that they find comfort in their orderly and predictable materialist paradigm so much, that they often are the very ones doing the misleading, either outright or subconsciously. It's nice to feel like you have it all figured out and won't face any divine justice, maybe?


Selective Skepticism of PseudoSkeptics (Establishment Defenders) PseudoSkeptics are highly selective with their skepticism. Not only do they not question their own beliefs, but they never challenge or apply skepticism to establishment views. Instead, they have a fanatical allegiance to it. A true skeptic examines all sides, including his own. But pseudoskeptics only point their skepticism at what they don't believe in, which everyone else does too. So what makes them different than anyone else then?

How Pseudoskeptics hijack "Skepticism" to mean its opposite: Disinformation, Mind Control and Suppression Pseudoskeptics are not just wrong and fallacious in their reasoning and approach to investigating the paranormal with outright rejection of anything that doesn't fit into a materialist orthodox paradigm. They've also, knowingly or unknowingly, engaged in deceptive mind control by hijacking critical terms to mean their OPPOSITE, including the very term "skeptic" itself. And they've hid what they truly are (suppressors of new ideas) by pretending to the opposite of what they are.

This is doubly funny/ironic, because they often claim conspiracy theorists prefer their neatly "dot connected" worldview, as opposed to the chaos of reality. Never mind that just to accept the objective reality, as presented by 100% proven conspiracy theories and admitted false flags, is a very far cry from a soft My Pillow for an Armadillo.

Nope, instead, JUST, to accept the factual nature of this narrow set of conspiracies, is potentially terrifying and that is, for the sake of argument, assuming that all unproven theories of corruption in power, are in fact totally bunk and they most certainly are not!

Who is Really Debunking Who?

The article in our focus here, continues...

“For over 200 years, many people, even scientists, have sought evidence for ghosts and life after death,” writes Sharon A. Hill, a paranormal researcher and author of Scientifical Americans: The Culture of Amateur Paranormal Researchers, in a recent blog. “There are millions of pages of previous research and experimentation into paranormal ideas. Definite proof has never been found.”

Well, first off, Sharon Hill is a professional duh-bunk-turd of which I've heard and served a dose of real critical thinking in the past!

Although, I must admit, she does a great job with this self-debunking paragraph! Indeed, 200 years, millions of pages of evidence, and scientists too... a great many of them in fact, more on those lab coat wearing sleuths at the bottom of this page and this is a MUST SEE page too...

Scientific Proof of Life After Death Has Been Found After All!

ALL THAT SAID, whatever points one might be perceived to score in a debate because of general or expert consensus is sorely lacking in this pesky "ghost belief" conundrum the so-called skeptics find themselves in. In fact, this is so much the case that a statistical probability argument logically wins the day without the need to even get into the evidentiary weeds/minutia. Simply put, how many sightings of ghosts have been recorded throughout history?

The data roughly and conservatively indicates that there are over 1.5 million ghost sightings a year! 

Locations thought to be haunted are in abundance all over the planet. So, just looking at apparition sightings alone and tossing aside, for a moment, any other related paranormal evidence, one is left with this. It is much more statistically probable that out of the hundreds of millions of ghost accounts over time, that simply ONE, is exactly as the observer interpreted it be! It only takes one! That's it! Just 1. I'll do you one better than that and provide two very good ones for starters!

Defenders of the official story mix facts and speculation, and they don't ever calculate the improbability or assess the factuality. If they were to calculate the improbability of all the coincidences surrounding 9/11 being 'just coincidences', they'd probably get a value greater than the number of electrons in the universe. And with regards to the explanation for the towers destruction, the debunkers take computer models over hard evidence. So the official conspiracy theory also ticks number 8.

The Repeatable Laboratory Result/Peer-review Model vs. Paranormal Phenomena - "Most Haunted House in America" True Ghost Story by JM Talboo

"Most Haunted House in America" True Ghost Story:

The gentleman being interviewed at the above link, Paul Eno, comes off as uber credible and describes 
a poltergeist case of unprecedented proportions that he personally witnessed, which includes sworn 
statements in police reports from police and fireman who say objects moved in horror movie-like ways. 
This all took place in a very finite space and all individuals involved were focused on looking for signs
of trickery. This is a fine example of good evidence that could never even be considered for repeatable 
laboratory experiments. In this respect, the scientific method is lacking. More lacking though, is the 
logic of any scientists or would-be debunkers who would dismiss good evidence simply because its 
nature lies outside of the ability of a certain process to examine the phenomena. That being said, there 
have been repeatable tests conducted and papers published on paranormal evidence suggestive of life 
after death.

Critics say EVP is just the pick up of stray broadcast signals. But we follow a former 
NASA scientist, and the world’s leading EVP researcher, into a laboratory that is totally 
shielded from all sound and electromagnetic signals. Despite it being a scientific impossibility 
he is able to produce an EVP sample in front of our cameras.

Comment on Article: First hint of 'life after death' in biggest ever scientific study 

But things are still dismissed even when they meet these standards. The first thing that any scientist or 
debunker should do is praise the fact that their favored process was employed. Rather than: praise the 
process, make recommendations, and attempt a personal replication study or the publication of a 
peer-reviewed response. Instead we often get: moving of goalposts and overly harsh criticism, used 
as an excuse for dismissal of personal attempts at replication and/or publication. If the demand of 
repeatability or peer-review is met, then even seemingly warranted harsh criticism does not justify 
a position of dismissal. This is doubly true when both criteria are met, as is the case with psi research 
to ask The Amazing James Randi.

If replication of a demonstrated paranormal phenomena in the lab is attempted and fails, it can be 
reasonably argued that it would still further demonstrate that the larger methodology here, isn't a fair 
litmus test for deciding the veracity of all things paranormal. These processes are only as good the
people employing them and judging the results in peer-review. Scientists are just as affected by 
more so, or perhaps scientists fair better with these shortcomings. But until they are cyborgs, this 
reason alone means that the repeatable laboratory result/peer-review model, is just a tool in a
myriad of ways we should try to arrive at conclusions about things, especially with the paranormal. 
Because again, even a cyborg cannot accurately conduct or judge research on phenomena when their 
programmed MO includes prerequisites that cannot be met.

To put it all another way, the fact that certain paranormal evidence such as poltergeist activity cannot 
meet the prerequisite of repeatability, does not mean it should be met with outright dismissal. There are 
other standards by which to judge such evidence, most namely, the legal standard.

Free E-book: A Lawyer Presents the Case for the Afterlife - Irrefutable Objective Evidence

And it should go without saying, that there is plenty of paranormal happenings that have been studied 
and provided compelling evidence using scientific principles and/or equipment, even if it defies the most often
reliable model of laboratory repeatability.

Here are my personal investigations into the paranormal and I can attest that I get amazing results that 
repeat time and time again using scientific equipment. That's not to say it's repeatable on demand 
every time, but I am not cherry picking either. I get results, OFTEN. Armchair skeptics do not!

Supernormal Science, Yoga, and the Evidence for Extraordinary Psychic Abilities by Dean Radin, PhD

To close this piece out, here is some good info I found just while researching this post and among the other info that 
strengthens my arguments here is also material concerning hallucinations, which the article I'm refuting predictably used as 
an intellectual crutch.

The Scientists Who Believe in Ghosts

Scientists don’t often believe in the paranormal, but, well, sometimes they do.

It's Halloween,  the most haunted day of the year. A day in which scientists around the world presumably dress up as "mad scientists" and tell their children, who have inevitably dressed up as as astronauts or paleontologists, that there is no such thing as ghosts, before teaching them how to whip up pop rocks in a test tube. But not all of them do this (it's bad to generalize!). Some scientists, do, in fact, believe in ghosts and the paranormal*.

*Time for a very quick disclaimer: Defining "scientist" is difficult—are parapsychologists, the people who study the paranormal, scientists? Are psychics, scientists? What journal articles count as "scientific?" As I mentioned, it's Halloween, so there's no reason to be a buzzkill: Anything relating to real scientific investigation of the paranormal ( but not vampires) that I could find on PubMed or Google Scholar that seems not-completely-batshit qualifies.

That being said, this is not an extensive list. There are paranormal research societies that have been around since the 19th century that publish all sorts of journals and literature and case studies.

I turned to cuddle him but as I turned the knees disappeared—This was not a dream sequence

With that out of the way, what even is paranormal activity? The question is important: An  admittedly old survey from 1982 of 339 top scientists associated with the American Association for Science found that 29 percent of the world's top scientists believe that extrasensory perception is an "established fact or a likely possibility."

That's  markedly lower than the American average of 40ish percent, but it's not insignificant.

But believing people can read minds or bend spoons or whatever doesn't mean they believe in ghosts. In a  1993 paper in the Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, Harvey Irwin wrote that scientists are likely to scoff at people who believe in anything paranormal are all whackjobs, which is not necessarily true.

"This type of gratuitous assumption is most common among skeptical commentators who act as if belief in ESP, belief in God, and belief in the unluckiness of the number 13 all are tarred with the same brush," he wrote.

In fact, there are at least seven different "dimensions" of paranormal beliefs, he figures: "traditional religious belief, parapsychology belief, witchcraft, spiritualism, superstition, extraordinary life forms, and precognition."

Earlier this year,  Etzel Cardena, a psychological researcher at Lund University in Sweden, put out a "call for an open, informed study of all aspects of consciousness," that noted that "increased experimental controls have not eliminated or even decreased significant support for the existence of parapsychological phenomena" and suggested that the study of the paranormal shouldn't be dismissed outright.

And, well, some scientists haven't. There are a smattering of published scientists who are willing to go on the record about paranormal experiences.

In the British Medical Journal in August of 1980, a then-attending physician at Cook County Hospital noted that two psychiatrists at the University of Virginia were baffled by a "37-year-old Marathi woman who has never left Nagpur [India] but who during trance-like states becomes transformed into a Bengali woman of the early 1800s, thus moving not only 725 miles to the east but also 180 years back in time. Able to speak Bengali only during her trances her language is of the period, pure and unadulterated with modern English words; and she displays an amazingly detailed knowledge of the people, places, and prevailing conditions of her time."

hallucination can be a paranormal phenomenon

More recently, AJ Crisp, a rheumatologist, tells the horrible story of the death of his young son in a car accident in a story published in BMJ in 1992.  He says that in the days after, he saw his son:

"I awoke at home two days after the accident and felt [my son's] knees in my back, nestling up warm and solid, as he sometimes did on weekend mornings even at 12 years old," he wrote. "I turned to cuddle him but as I turned the knees disappeared. This was not a dream sequence."

This, obviously happened to a distraught father; that he felt like musing about it years later in a scientific journal, however, seems notable.

"Could there be an afterlife and could he be searching for us, worried and confused?" Crisp wondered.

Finally,  in a paper also published in BMJ in 2011, Armin Gadit, a psychiatrist at the Memorial University of Newfoundland tells the story of one of his patients, who appeared to be completely normal and without psychological problems—except for the fact that he talked to (and saw) his dead mother, every day, for years.

"The patient firmly believes that his mother appears to him in the real world; he does accept that dead people do not return to earth but attributes this exception to his strong bond with his mother," Gadit wrote. "This vision cannot be defined as pseudo hallucination or as a true hallucination and hence (in the author's opinion) might be a paranormal experience."

Gadit concluded that "hallucinations can occur in normal people," and that "hallucination can be a paranormal phenomenon."

Perhaps the most famous current scientific believer in the paranormal, however, is Rupert Sheldrake, a former Cambridge University cell biologist who has since gone on to be a parapsychological researcher.  Among his most controversial claims is that "natural systems, such as termite colonies, or pigeons, or orchid plants, or insulin molecules, inherit a collective memory from all previous things of their kind."

If you do want to freak yourself out a bit, you should check out Sheldrake's TED talk, which was banned by the organization and roundly criticized by "real" scientists. And, if you're still looking for a Halloween costume, perhaps you could go as the ghost of a pigeon or an insulin molecule.