Parapsychology Journalism: The People, The Theory, The Science, The Skeptics
The current controversy at TED, which pits parapsychologist Rupert Sheldrake and Graham Hancock against an anonymous board of scientists is ostensibly about censorship, but the arguments and the passion involved go much deeper than that. The battle that is going on right now is the beginning of the end for materialism as the dominant ideology of the sciences. It’s pretty easy to the evidence of this.
The ground is quickly shifting under the feet of the materialists due to the increasing numbers of well informed, well educated people who can refute the materialist arguments and are aware of the evidence for the primacy of consciousness in physics. The normal power plays which materialists have used in the past do not work under these circumstances, but they will still be employed because the materialists have nothing else in their bag of tricks. Nowhere is this more apparent than at TED, which has aligned itself with the old guard materialists and finds itself at a disadvantage having to defend these suddenly ineffective attempts to control the debate. These attempts include:
This is the first piece of evidence. Nowhere do you see any show of confidence in materialism in these actions. It is all evasiveness, stonewalling and general pettiness. This is not what people do when they know that they are right; this is what they do when they know that they are wrong. This behavior is certainly not limited to TED, or to psi or materialism for that matter. It’s just what people do when confronted with new and uncomfortable ideas. (link here.) Nobel Prize winning physicist Brian Josephson had this say about it: (link here.)
For the last six weeks, BBC2 TV has been running a series called ‘Heretic’ (…)
In every case a similar story unfolded: dismissal of the claims as being nonsense or impossible, generally without any serious attempt to look at the evidence or the arguments; the non-materialisation of the honours, promotions, invitations to give public lectures and so on that such individuals might have been expected to receive given their past achievements; violent attacks by other scientists; and, for some, demotion or withdrawal of research facilities.
The prestige of the individuals concerned and their continuing competence in other matters is seen as being of no moment: their unorthodox claims are perceived merely as instances of the failings to which all human beings are subject. The sense of self-superiority of the critics in many instances was in striking contrast to the humility, integrity and sincerity manifested by workers such as Robert Jahn (an expert in rocket engineering forced to resign his position as Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at Princeton University because of this unconventional side to his research interests and, for a time, not allowed to talk about that research).
The second piece of evidence for the end of materialism is that the internet has changed the game forever. The materialists, who are in charge, can deny funding, remove whole journals from common academic search engines, teach only materialistic science and attack unorthodox claims, but they can no longer stifle discussion or stop the spread of information.
When I first started blogging, about five years ago, (here) almost no one was informed about parapsychology or related research. Skeptics pretty much jumped all over anything I had to say and Randi’s Million Dollar Challenge was brought up frequently. A lot has changed in the intervening years. Judging by the discussions at TED, many of which are quite scholarly, skeptics/materialists have all but abandoned this indefensible argument against psi and even find themselves completely on the defensive when they refer to parapsychology as a pseudoscience. Sweeping, statements, long the staple of the materialist argument, are being exposed as ignorant. When they dare people to prove them wrong, they are met with a barrage of links doing just that.
Even on public forums, I am not a lone voice in the wilderness anymore. Knowledgeable people come out of the woodwork well informed, fully aware of the defects in materialist arguments and ready to rumble. The materialists are increasingly outnumbered everywhere, as they are at TED. It seems to be speeding up.
The evidence for psi hasn’t change much in five years, but the general knowledge about that evidence has. What we’re seeing playing out at TED is only the beginning. It is starting at beachhead organizations that lie outside of the fortress, but soon it will move inland to the materialism stronghold itself, academia. Universities and other schools are charged with telling the truth, and this is the wedge that will eventually separate materialism and its supporters from their stranglehold over these institutions. To change the current materialist stance will require a huge uproar, well beyond what we’re seeing at TED and such an uproar is coming. It will come about because of circumstances very much like what is happening at TED, where materialists pull stunts to oppress opposing views, just like they always have done. But they will face an increasing backlash from this until materialists start having to choose between their jobs and their dogma. We all know what happens; the institution will defend its members right up until it figures out that the price is too high. Once this political threshold is reached, things start to change.
It’s easy to get these controversies started; people hate being dissed and they hate being lied to and these are the tactics most favored by materialists. They are, in other words, speeding up the process themselves by inadvertently creating the optimum conditions for change.
The fact is, we cannot allow children to be taught materialistic science. It will wreck their ability to deal with the rapid changes that are coming and put them behind their properly educated peers. Consciousness science is best learned from early on, where children can accept the new ideas without having to push out the old ones.
As it stands, this change will destroy many a prominent career and create new giants of science. It rewards holistic thinking to a far greater degree than in the past, and this is going to change the type of person that stands out in the sciences.
I would have said even a couple of years ago that this would take a generation to accomplish, but I don’t know anymore. Things are moving so fast.