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February 20, 2007

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Wow, I just started reading The Secret at my wifes' request, and it does seem a little too " made for TV" for my liking ( that is what directed me to this website), but I have got to say, people on this website like Jimmy Blue are really troubling. Come on dude, are you really THAT insecure that you have to try and belittle other people for stating their personal opinion based on their experiences. You really sound angry, smug and quite frankly, miserable. I hope things turn around for you (just think happy thoughts and they will come true.....LOL)

BTW, how long to you spend on this website man? Good god, no wonder why you are so miserable....Go outside little brother.

I already knew you will be coming with nonsense and stupid remarks. It just sad that people like you make our world what it is today, a living hell.
"Science is the source of all the world's evils!" he typed on his computer, sending the words around the world over the Internet. "The world would be much better if everyone just wished for whatever they needed, rather than doing something about it!"
As for me I dont see the world that way, but many others do.
Um...you're the one who compared the Earth to Hell, but you don't believe it? So, what has science made the Earth into?
I will now leave this post for good cause I gain nothing from your responses and you closed-minded, no wait...programmed minded people will never break free.
Yes, we're program-minded because we trust sensory input, logic, inquiry, and the scientific method. While you're an open-minded freethinker because all your ideas about the universe come from a book.

It's not letting me post this in full, so let me try it in two parts. I am not a spammer! I am a human being!

And now, let me annotate the sentiments of Franky P, in two parts (darn spamblocker):

"Come on dude, are you really THAT insecure that you have to try and belittle other people for stating their personal opinion based on their experiences."

"You really sound angry, smug and quite frankly, miserable.
I hope things turn around for you (just think happy thoughts and they will come true.....LOL)

BTW, how long to you spend on this website man? Good god, no wonder why you are so miserable....Go outside little brother."

Hey, BD, any chance of an "I'll pray for you" doggerel? Seems to be the only thing in there that doesn't already fit.

Tom, I dont believe in god so no, I wont pray for you. Funny post though.

The point being that there's effectively no difference between "I'll pray for you" and "I'll hope happy thoughts for you." The comment there was directed at Bronze Dog, hence the "BD" at the beginning of the sentence.

Hey, BD, any chance of an "I'll pray for you" doggerel? Seems to be the only thing in there that doesn't already fit.

Considering that #66 is next in line, and I forgot what special entry I was planning on doing, I'll go for it.

FrankyP said:
Good god, no wonder why you are so miserable

Then said:
Tom, I dont believe in god so no, I wont pray for you.

So you just invoke her name when it suits you?

Testing the "Law" of Attraction

Please, please, pretty please with sugar on top - I believe with all my heart that no more credulous asshats will comment on this post!

Wizard:

Ahh, my ignorant minds.

You have more than one ignorant mind? It would explain a lot.

I already knew you will be coming with nonsense and stupid remarks.

Hey, there's a coincidence. I already knew that you would also come up with some nonsense, and some stupid remarks. Lo and behold, you don't disappoint.

It just sad that people like you make our world what it is today, a living hell.

You think its bad now, imagine it without medical science, satellite navigation, satellite communications, the PC you type your drivel on, etc etc. You know, the sorts of science and technology that those of us on here are all interested in and promote. You on the other hand believe if we wished for a GPS satellite constellation it would magic itself into existence. If people didn't really believe it, then it would be hilarious.

I will now leave this post for good cause I gain nothing from your responses and you closed-minded, no wait...programmed minded people will never break free.

Is that a promise? Oh gosh, never been called close minded before, how original. You believe that people like us, those who like to research, investigate, experiment, find new stuff out, are making life hell. You really need to take a closer look at yourself before calling others closeminded. Please stop the projection.

Franky P:

but I have got to say, people on this website like Jimmy Blue are really troubling.

I think we need to take responsibility for our actions in this world. That the way for us to make a better life and society is through science and rationality. I believe victims should be shown compassion, warmth, sympathy and recieve all the help our modern world can give. Mora thinks rape victims deserved it. But you find me troubling. That says pretty much all we need to know about you, don't you think?

Come on dude, are you really THAT insecure that you have to try and belittle other people for stating their personal opinion based on their experiences.

No, sorry to disappoint you on amateur psychology night. I belittle them because their ideas are ridiculous, often dangerous, at times immoral, and they choose to promote them in a public forum. I used to be polite about it, but I gave up doing that after the first few personal attacks from bleevers and people like you.

You really sound angry, smug and quite frankly, miserable.

I'll give you angry. You bet people claiming rape victims deserve it makes me angry. You bet I get angry with someone who believes children with AIDs deserve it. You bet I'll get angry with someone who thinks that a little girl who was kidnapped, raped and buried alive was just getting her just desserts from a former life.

What is worrying, is that it doesn't seem to make you angry, or to trouble you as you put it. Maybe you should think about that. Think about it real hard. Do you think I shouldn't be angry when someone says the victims of the Holocaust brought it on themselves?

Smug? I guess, at times. I think I'm entitled to feel smug that I don't think like idiots such as mora though. Anyone who doesn't should allow themselves a little bit of smug without feeling guilty.

Miserable? How original. Yes, us skeptics are truly miserable. Would you feel better if instead of re-typing things I've typed over and over again on this blog in answer to people like you I just agreed instead? Oh yeah, I'm truly miserable, no reasons to be happy at all. Because I think people like mora are morons, I must be miserable. You got it, you're so insightful. I'd better change my ways.

BTW, how long to you spend on this website man?

About an hour a day. I can use more than one finger to type you see, and don't have to look up the big words people use. I don't suppose though that the irony of taking time to write on a website what amounts to nothing more than a personal attack, which includes references to wasting time on the same website, ever occurred to you did it?

Good god, no wonder why you are so miserable....Go outside little brother.

Oh touche. What a wit. And so elegantly typed as well. I must suppose though that you were being ironic, given that I read those words having just returned from a hike in Matthews / Winters Park, Colorado that I got up at 5:30am for. Going outside hey? I wondered what I had that $1,000 worth of gear for.

Incidentally, there are only two men in the world I feel privileged to call brother. You're not one of them. Maybe there is a god after all.

But Jimmy_Blue, we are all brothers in God's/the universe's eyes! Unless you happen to be female.... then we are all sisters.... or somthing. Seriously....

Amen!

I've been called a lifeless geek for reading science books, studying for my classes, having an office job, going to museums, admiring art, reading science fiction books, playing videogames (and once specifically for playing Armored Core), playing text-based games, playing board games, playing card games, playing D&D, playing Dance Dance Revolution, watching television, talking to people without involving a phone or physical presence, and, most of all, more than anything, logging onto the Internet and giving a care about the future of mankind.

I guess it's official: Anything except football and celebrity gossip is hereby geeky.

Jimmy, you seem to think I am calling you miserable because you are a skeptic. That has nothing to do with it. I am calling you miserable because that is how you come across to me, that is my opinion. Take it or leave it. The bottom line is that Mora gave her opinion about the subject at hand, and you responded by tying to make her ( I assume it is a her) feel inferior. I thought it came off as insecure so I said so, thats the extent of it. The funny part is that I may agree in principal with alot of what you say but not the way you say/type it.

And to this comment:

FrankyP said:
Good god, no wonder why you are so miserable

Then said:
Tom, I dont believe in god so no, I wont pray for you.

So you just invoke her name when it suits you?

...Um yes, I do actually. Its a figure of speech. Is that really the best you can come up with?? Questioning my use of the word god??? LOL. You guys are too much man.

P.S.I like how you used the word "her" when referring to god. Nice touch.

Now everyone go ahead and read my postline by line, identify any typos, run ons, fragmented sentences or whatever and use that to tell me my life experiences are invalid. I will the the blue guy in the corner holding my breath.


"I guess it's official: Anything except football and celebrity gossip is hereby geeky"


Well, celebrity gossip is kind of geeky too.

The bottom line is that Mora gave her opinion about the subject at hand, and you responded by tying to make her ( I assume it is a her) feel inferior.

When people say inherently stupid things, we call them stupid for saying them. When people say evil things, we call them evil for saying them. Mora said both stupid and evil things. We all went into detail on just what made those things she said stupid and/or evil.

I also fail to see how you came to all the conclusions you did. Jimmy_Blue is honest, therefore he's trying to make people feel inferior, therefore he's miserable? That's a lot of leaping.

"When people say inherently stupid things, we call them stupid for saying them. When people say evil things, we call them evil for saying them. Mora said both stupid and evil things. We all went into detail on just what made those things she said stupid and/or evil"

Stupid according to who Dog? Apparently not according to Mora ( and who ever else believes in the Secret)...Just because it is opposite of what you and I may think is stupid/evil doesnt make it so. I think we may all agree that positive thinking is beneficial. If someone chooses to take that idea to another level, I am not going to ridicule them if they believe it has made their life better. Whether it has or not is irrelevant. The fact that THEY believe it is really all that matters.


I know this is played out but Columbus was ridiculed for thinking the world was round. I think he might have had the last laugh on that one.

Why do people think that because they call something an opinion it's immune to criticism or response?

FrankyP:

I thought it came off as insecure so I said so, thats the extent of it.

And you are wrong, that's the extent of it.

The bottom line is that Mora gave her opinion about the subject at hand, and you responded by tying to make her ( I assume it is a her) feel inferior.

No, I tried to show her philosophy/opinion/beliefs were inferior, because they are. If she is so invested and associated with them, as she is, too bad. Given what she says, I won't be losing any sleep over whether or not I made her feel inferior.

This relativism given to beliefs (that no one belief is inferior) is the very reason that idiot ideas like those being promoted by Mora are flourishing.

Do you find mora's beliefs and arguments troubling or not?

The funny part is that I may agree in principal with alot of what you say but not the way you say/type it.

Don't read my comments then. I'll get over it somehow. I'll be miserable for a time though.

use that to tell me my life experiences are invalid.

Do please tell us when that was done.

I will the the blue guy in the corner holding my breath.

Again with the witty. Bravo.

You do seem to be spending a lot of time around here though. Go outside.

I think if anyone's depressed or miserable it's Mr. Wizard. He's the one who thinks the "world is a living hell". I don't think studying ancient literature (like the bible) and understanding it for what it is, according to its own cultural context, is not nihilistic. On the contrary, it's humanist. Studying art and literature and history, and coming to understandings about what it means to be human, and celebrating that is positive. Believing in hellfire is negative. Having hope is necessary, but cynically exploiting that hope with a pyramid scheme like the Secret is the negative nihilistic thing, not questioning it. I personally, try to hope that everyone's better instincts will eventually prevail, rather than hope that some god is going to show up and apotheosize us up to heaven out of nowhere. Different kind of hope, I guess.

madaha

If someone chooses to take that idea to another level, I am not going to ridicule them if they believe it has made their life better. Whether it has or not is irrelevant. The fact that THEY believe it is really all that matters.
If someone chooses to take the idea that some people are genetically superior to others to another level, I am not going to ridicule them if they believe it has made their life better. Whether or not it has is irrelevant. The fact that THEY believe it is really all that matters.

Some beliefs are wrong. Some are dangerous. And yes, some are stupid. "The Secret" is all three.

I know this is played out but Columbus was ridiculed for thinking the world was round. I think he might have had the last laugh on that one.
Oh, Jesus Haploid Christ. Columbus was not ridiculed for believing the world was round. No educated person since the era of the Classical Greeks has believed that the world was anything but round. Columbus was ridiculed because his calculations determined that the world was much smaller in circumference than it was thought to be, and that there thus was not a whole lot of space between Portugal and the East Indies. As it turns out, the other calculations were correct (funny how science works, ain't it?), and Chris blundered his way into a new continent. Which he promptly mistook for the Indies. No, he most certainly didn't have the last laugh on that one.

More humor as a defense..I am shocked! SHOCKED!!!....hey, at least you didnt call me stupid ( at least not yet)


"You do seem to be spending a lot of time around here though. Go outside"

I am ( well, on my back porch if that counts)....you wouldnt believe the technology these days. Plus, I can assure you this is a one day affair, but I have had fun.


Do I agree with Mora? If you are asking me if I believe things will happen just by imagining them then no, I dont. However, I do believe in the interpersonal empowerment of positive thinking and I think that Mora probably truly believes The Secret is what turned her life around so I encourage her to believe that. If someone thinks that a belief in god makes it easier to accept death, then I encourage it. If you think that you must take out the garbage every other tuesday or pink aliens will inherit the earth, believe in friggin pink aliens then, if that is what it takes to make that comfortable in their own skin.

Well, it has been fun boys and girls, but I have to go watch some basketball. ( a non geeky thing where I am from)


You arent going to change anyones opinion by making fun of them while trying to come off as intelligent. In fact, you will probably only strengthen their resolve.

Bingo, would you look at that. Just as I'm typing a post complaining about moral/intellectual relativism what does Franky post a bit of? Moral relativism. I couldn't have made this up.

Stupid according to who Dog?

Anyone who is sane perhaps.

Do you think the idea that rape victims deserve what happens to them because of their actions in a former life that no-one is aware of or can control is as intellectually and morally sound as the idea that the act is vile, the victim is not to blame in any way and the perpetrator should be punished? Yes or no will do.

Apparently not according to Mora

Precisely. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. That doesn't stop the opinion or the holder from being stupid/ignorant etc.

I think we may all agree that positive thinking is beneficial.

Well you'd be wrong. Who determines what constitutes positive thinking? There are as many definitions of this as there are people.

If someone chooses to take that idea to another level, I am not going to ridicule them if they believe it has made their life better. Whether it has or not is irrelevant. The fact that THEY believe it is really all that matters.

And there's the problem. What people believe can be, and has been, and could be, dangerous. But you don't mind, as long as the believer is happy.

Oh man Tom. are you really comparing Mora to Hitler? seriously? how do Mora's beliefs hurt anyone else?

And as far as columbus goes, you are correct. I was wrong and acknowledge it ( OMG, what did he do????). My fifth grade teacher has failed me.

"Apparently not according to Mora

Precisely. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. That doesn't stop the opinion or the holder from being stupid/ignorant etc."


Haha....right....nor does it stop someone else from thinking those same thoughts about you.


"I think we may all agree that positive thinking is beneficial.

Well you'd be wrong. Who determines what constitutes positive thinking? There are as many definitions of this as there are people."

So now we've reverted to semantics huh?


Stupid according to who Dog?

Anyone who is sane perhaps.

Do you think the idea that rape victims deserve what happens to them because of their actions in a former life that no-one is aware of or can control is as intellectually and morally sound as the idea that the act is vile, the victim is not to blame in any way and the perpetrator should be punished? Yes or no will do.

Why should my answer be resricted to one word when you write 6 pages? Doesn't that seem unfair? My answer is No, but I admit I have no clue what happens to me before or after I die and NEITHER DO YOU!! That is what is so comical about all this. You act like you know the answer for sure and it is an absolute truth. Maybe I did do something in a past life that affects my current existance. I have to admit it sounds kind of silly,but I also have to assume that it may be possible, since I cannot prove it impossible and neither can you. If you can, I urge you to show me.


Oh man Tom. are you really comparing Mora to Hitler? seriously? how do Mora's beliefs hurt anyone else?
No, I'm showing the absurdity of your relativist stance.

If these beliefs were just Mora's, then no, it's doubtful that they'd be harmful to anyone except Mora (specifically her pocketbook, but I'm sure once the bad times come and she starts blaming herself for wishing them to happen, her psychological and emotional well-being will suffer as well). But these beliefs have been endorsed by Oprah, and Oprah is like unto a goddess to some. Which means that people are going to engage in widespread solipsism and quite literal wishful thinking. The moral implications of "The Secret" are deplorable, the concept is absurd, and the worst part of all of it is that it furthers the dumbing down of America with regard to science. People swallow this "law of attraction" bullshit and think it's quantum physics, while actual science is facing budget cuts left and right, and widespread ignorance, from some because it isn't helping people get whatever they want for free, and in part because it appears to endorse these ridiculous woo-beliefs (because if Joe Vitale can call it science, then science must agree, right?). And yes, championing the cause of nationwide ignorance is harmful, in about every possible way.

Mora's beliefs are dangerous because they can be, and have been used to encourage inaction and apathy.

Wasn't there a caste system with an untouchable class in India that was heavily discriminated against? If I recall correctly, few people stood up for them: Everyone else rationalized that they deserve to be discriminated against, otherwise they wouldn't have been reincarnated to that caste.

Inaction in the face of evil. The triumph of evil only requires that the good do nothing.

When I look at Mora's beliefs, that's what I see: An excuse for inaction.

Okay, I really have to leave now.

Tom, great last post. seriously. I see your point of view. I can say that I agree with all of it, but I see where you are coming from.

Dog, fair enough, but before you critize someone for doing nothing, I hope you look in the mirror and are comfortable with what YOU are doing, not just criticizing others for not doing enough. I am in no way implying that is what you do, its just a thought.

Oh Franky you are a piece of work.

Do I agree with Mora? If you are asking me if I believe things will happen just by imagining them then no, I dont.

Of course everyone here, including you, know that is not what I am asking. Let me make it nice and plain and simple for you so you can't do the Woo Step Waltz and answer something I didn't ask.

Are you troubled by Mora's views on rape or not?

Do you believe that Mora's views on rape are inferior to the view that rape is a crime that should be punished, and the victim is not to blame?

Yes or no for the two questions will do.

However, I do believe in the interpersonal empowerment of positive thinking and I think that Mora probably truly believes The Secret is what turned her life around so I encourage her to believe that.

So you would encourage delusions then? See, I believe Mora turned Mora's life around and she should take credit for it. I suspect now though that it was more by luck than judgement. My respect for what she has done with her life has nothing to do with the fact that her beliefs are nonsense, and dangerous nonsense at that.

If someone thinks that a belief in god makes it easier to accept death, then I encourage it. If you think that you must take out the garbage every other tuesday or pink aliens will inherit the earth, believe in friggin pink aliens then, if that is what it takes to make that comfortable in their own skin.

So as Tom Foss says, if someone believes they are of superior human stock than say, Jews, or black people, you'd encourage their belief? As long as it made them happy. Would their belief be stupid, or evil, or wrong?

Haha....right....nor does it stop someone else from thinking those same thoughts about you.

And? You're going to have to try much harder to impress me Franky.

So now we've reverted to semantics huh?

And there went my ironometer. Remind me, who was it that said this:

Stupid according to who Dog?

Do you disagree then with the idea that different people will have a different idea about what thinking positive means to them? You'll have proof of course?

Why should my answer be resricted to one word when you write 6 pages?

Because only an idiot would equivocate over whether rape vicitims deserve what happens to them or not. It's a simple yes or no answer for any sane person.

My answer is No, but I admit I have no clue what happens to me before or after I die and NEITHER DO YOU!!

So your answer should actually be that they might have deserved it surely? Since you believe that there's the possibility of there having been a former life, you accept that Mora might be right. So your answer can only be that they might have deserved it but we don't know either way. Or, that Mora might be right.

You act like you know the answer for sure and it is an absolute truth.

Hey, you just gave an absolute 'no' didn't you? Didn't you mean it?

Maybe I did do something in a past life that affects my current existance. I have to admit it sounds kind of silly,but I also have to assume that it may be possible, since I cannot prove it impossible and neither can you.

I thought you said No. Looks like you can't make your mind up. Either Mora is wrong, or she is right, or she might be right. Which is it to be? Feel free to write six pages of tortured justification for your answer.

If you can, I urge you to show me.

Since no-one has proven the before or after life exists, why should I have to show you it doesn't? Would you like me to prove that Unicorns don't exist as well? How about Winnie the Pooh? Zeus?

I wonder now, who might have said this:

Tom, I dont believe in god so no...

How is this any different to not believing in a before and afterlife? Can you prove there is no god? I urge you to show me.

Don't you really mean that :

Tom, I have to assume that god may be possible, since I cannot prove it impossible and neither can you.

You know, your non-belief in god is so almost like an absolute conclusion you've reached.

On the possibility/impossibility of God...

Define "God."

I don't entertain the possibility (and it's pretty rare that I actually think something is impossible) until someone comes up with a useful definition. It's only useful if it can be used to make predictions. We test those predictions under controlled conditions (preferably testing predictions that contradict those of existing scientific theories). If they turn out to be true, we can accept the hypothesis.

Afterlife: We don't have any reason to believe there is one, yet. That's the truth, no matter how much we may or may not like it. Retreating into fantasy because you can't deal with reality is escapism. Escapism is not a virtue, and should not be encouraged.

Its a figure of speech. Is that really the best you can come up with?? Questioning my use of the word god??? LOL. You guys are too much man.

I guess I have trouble detecting irony, especially when done badly.

Hey! I made a podcast about "The Secret" on Mondo Diablo, if anyone's interested!

Let's stop the flaming! I just got here, and I'm looking forward to a real discussion of the Secret please! I just saw it, and at first I thought it was dumb. And then i though, I'm only human like everyone else, why do I assume that I know exactly how the universe works.

First point...

"As I wrote in The “Law” of Attraction (Not), the Universal Law of Gravitation explains this precisely."

The "Universal Law" of Gravitation is wrong. It's an APPROXIMATION. It's very, very, very accurate, but in the end, if you try to explain the universe through that law, planets are off by a few hundred miles. That's a millionth of a fraction of an inch in terms of the universe, but everything isn't where it's suppose to be. The law works well enough for our purposes, but in the end, it's ever so slightly off. I'll find you proof if you ask for it.

And hey... if you're wrong about that, could it be that you're wrong about other things? hmmmm...........

Second point ...

I was a bit intrigued by quantum physicists talking about the Secret. I was trying to figure out if they were just crackpot scientists, or if they were actually so smart they they had some deeper understanding of reality. I did some reading, and there is "scientific proof" that the mind can manipulate the universe. I put it in quotes because there actually is no scientific proof. But that's because Einsten and all those smart quantum people couldn't come up with any other explanation. There's a debate in quantum physics about the role the mind play in the universe. Here's some light reading material:
http://www.upscale.utoronto.ca/PVB/
Harrison/DoubleSlit/DoubleSlit.html

http://www.upscale.utoronto.ca/
GeneralInterest/Harrison/SchrodCat/
SchrodCat.html

The double slit experiment shows that particles in the universe don't follow any known law. They are completely random, which doesn't make any sense to us. For example, if we throw a ball at another ball, they'll hit each other and move off in different directions. If we could re-create that experiment exactly, and throw the ball in EXACTLY the same way and have it hit exactly the same, and have all other conditions exactly the same, the EXACT SAME THING should happen. In our world, it does.
In the quantum universe of atoms, it doesn't. This makes no sense. If nothing is different, why would we get a different result? There has to be SOMETHING different, but nothing that we can see. So some genius decided that the only thing that was different was the person that was looking at it. And then all this talk started. No one has an answer yet.
The second link, Schrodinger's cat, is a thought experiment which shows that people's thoughts can influence reality. It's just an example. But it's an interpretation of what happens in the quantum world. We determine the outcome just by looking at it. This seems to be typical of what happens in the quantum world... when we "look" at an atom, we determine its state. By observing a particle, we influence what it's doing. Weird shit.

Anyways, I'll try to distinguish fact from fiction. Particles being completely unpredictable is true. For example, it's been proven that one particle exists in every single possible state (ie. it's in more than one place at the same time) and when we observe it, it "collapses" into a single state (ie. as soon as we look at it, it starts following the laws we made up for it ... those laws say that an object can't be in more than one place at the same time).
Oh, and a particle being in more than one place at the same time is true.

The part where a person, by looking ("observing" is more accurate because we can't "see" atoms) at a particle, he influences it, is true. By looking at it, it loses this weird quantum state of being everywhere and goes into a state of being in one place. And we (humans) make that happen. By not looking at it, it's everywhere, by looking at it, it's in one place. And I'm not saying we can determine where it's going to be. The result is random (at least it's random by our current understanding of it). But human observation influence reality. Just by looking at a particle, we can cause it to transform from this unbelievable quantum state into a single sate. WEIRD SHIT. What else can we do??

(off topic here - we don't understand why any of this works as it does. But we've learned to use it. Hear of the talk recently about the quantum computer being demonstrated? It's a computer where the basic component of a computer, a 0 or 1, is 0 AND 1 AT THE SAME TIME. The applications of this is that when you enter an equation, such as x + 1, it figures out every possible answer to that equation in one step. Every possible value is x is stored simultaneously, and every possible answer is stored simultanteously. If you google it and read that it can perform 64000 simultaneous calculations, that's what it's talking about. It uses that quantum property that a particle can be in more than one place at the same time to achieve this. Mind blowing.)

Fiction (the part where it's just speculation): it's the human MIND that influences particles. The proof so far is just that if we observe a particle, it collapses. So this could be for any reason. We can't actually see particles, we need to use instruments to measure it. The instruments interfere with the particle, so this could be the cause of it. But the latest experiments prove pretty conclusively that this is not it. The human mind causing the results was sort of come to through a process of elimination. It seemed like the only thing left that could cause it.

And what is it that causes particles to pick some random position to be in when it's observed? Google "God does not play dice with the universe". Einstein said this. Things should NOT happen randomly. This quote means that the only explanation Einstein could come up with is that when we need to determine the position of a particle, God rolls the dice, and the position is determined randomly. No, there has to be another explanation. The human mind? It's been shown that humans play a part in the outcome... which part of the human is causing this outcome? The mind? Invisible magic x-rays coming from the eyes? No one knows.

"Fiction" is a bad word. It's not necessarily untrue. It's just this idea that the mind influences reality is so mind-blowing that everyone is having a hard time believing it.

Anyways, my point is that our latest scientific thinking speculates that the mind can influence reality, and that the human mind has some role in the universe. So while I'm not thinking that I'll be buying that $10 million mansion next year, I'm not dismissing the Secret. The movie itself is a lot of dramatics and music and whispering for effect, but when you take all that away (and take away all the notions of "good" and "evil" things happening that everyone was discussing above... I don't think the universe has an opinion on whether something is good or bad) and think about whether people can influence what is happening around them, well... I'm not so sure anymore.

Skeptico replies to Kevin

Re: The "Universal Law" of Gravitation is wrong. It's an APPROXIMATION. It's very, very, very accurate, but in the end…

Drop an object and it will accelerate exactly as predicted by the law. It’s so accurate that NASA uses the calculations when sending probes to the other planets. It’s true that some of Newton’s calcs differ as we approach the speed of light. True but irrelevant. Thanks to Einstein we know exactly by how much they differ. The Law of Attraction is not a scientific law like Newton’s Laws that we use when sending spacecraft to Saturn and beyond. Don’t be silly.

Re: I did some reading, and there is "scientific proof" that the mind can manipulate the universe. I put it in quotes because there actually is no scientific proof.

Precisely. There is no proof – it is just an interpretation. One of many. But even if this version of the Copenhagen Interpretation is true, that still does not mean we can change reality by thoughts. That is taking reductionism to an absurd level.

Re: The double slit experiment shows that particles in the universe don't follow any known law. They are completely random…

OF course they follow laws. How do you think we can develop quantum computers if they obey no laws?

Re: The second link, Schrodinger's cat, is a thought experiment which shows that people's thoughts can influence reality.

Actually it’s a thought experiment and since it can never be carried out it shows nothing. Funnily enough, Schrödinger devised his thought experiment to show that the Copenhagen Interpretation is wrong.

I realize that you’ve read something about quantum mechanics and you think it shows thoughts effect reality, but it really shows no such thing. As I wrote above:

And the “you literally create your day with your thoughts” nonsense is pretty much the same as What The Bleep was trying to sell. It wasn’t in the first 20 minutes, but I’m sure that before the end, quantum mechanics would have been evoked to justify all the mystical conclusions. Unfortunately, Quantum Mechanics, and even the Copenhagen Interpretation, does not say this is the way the universe works.

Click on What the (Bleep) Were They Thinking? for the explanation why. It starts on paragraph 3.

The "Universal Law" of Gravitation is wrong. It's an APPROXIMATION. It's very, very, very accurate, but in the end, if you try to explain the universe through that law, planets are off by a few hundred miles. That's a millionth of a fraction of an inch in terms of the universe, but everything isn't where it's suppose to be. The law works well enough for our purposes, but in the end, it's ever so slightly off. I'll find you proof if you ask for it.
Evidence? I'm a physicist, and this is the first I'm hearing about this. The Law of Gravitation is constant throughout the universe; the numbers are approximated for ease, but the actual physical process is constant and observable.
I did some reading, and there is "scientific proof" that the mind can manipulate the universe.
No, there is not. You are wrong.
The double slit experiment shows that particles in the universe don't follow any known law.
Okay, I rescind that. You're wrong and misinformed. Particles in the universe follow many known laws, but what you're talking about are the principles of wave-particle duality and quantum entanglement, both of which are well understood and easily measurable.
So some genius decided that the only thing that was different was the person that was looking at it. And then all this talk started. No one has an answer yet.
I honestly have no idea where to begin with your little story. Really, I don't. There is so much wrong with it that I can't even begin to untangle it. Somehow, you've conflated chaos theory with quantum mechanics, added a sprinkle of uncertainty, and topped it all off with "the mind influences the universe."

The fact of the matter is, there needn't be a mind involved at all. I think one thing that's confusing you is the notion of the "observer," which in QM doesn't denote a person. All it means is that there is some kind of measuring device present.

The second link, Schrodinger's cat, is a thought experiment which shows that people's thoughts can influence reality.
No, it doesn't. It shows that when you have a superposition state (in the cat experiment, dead/not dead), once you measure it, the wavefunction collapses into one or the other state randomly. You cannot actively decide whether or not the cat is dead, you only force the cat's wavefunction to collapse into a dead or not-dead state. And as it says IN THE ARTICLE YOU LINKED, you don't need a person to go into the room to collapse the wavefunction, all you need is a measurement device.
We determine the outcome just by looking at it.
You're conflating two different ideas here. In the cat experiment, we force an outcome by measuring it. We cannot control what the outcome will be, and it has nothing to do with the mind or human thought.

On the other hand, when you're talking about decoherence, you have a somewhat different kettle of fish. If you take the double-slit experiment, where light behaves as a particle at one point and a wave at another (but never both at the same time), and you place a particle-detector at one slit, you'll find that the light behaves particle-like the whole way through. If you put a wave-detector at the slit, you'll find that the light behaves wave-like all the way through. By interrupting the experiment with a measurement device, you partially collapse the wavefunction, and the system behaves as though it weren't in a superposition state (it's been awhile since I did anything with decoherence, so if someone could check my work, I'd appreciate it). In this case, we determine (to a degree) what kind of system we're looking at it by what kind of device we measure with.

This seems to be typical of what happens in the quantum world... when we "look" at an atom, we determine its state. By observing a particle, we influence what it's doing. Weird shit.
Weird shit, indeed. But weirder still to someone who clearly doesn't quite understand it. It's not a matter of a human being looking at the particle which collapses its wavefunction, any interaction with the environment, any interaction with a measuring device, causes the wavefunction to collapse and forces the system to drop into one state or the other. And it's only when a system is in a superposition state.
For example, it's been proven that one particle exists in every single possible state (ie. it's in more than one place at the same time) and when we observe it, it "collapses" into a single state (ie. as soon as we look at it, it starts following the laws we made up for it ... those laws say that an object can't be in more than one place at the same time).
There are days when I feel like Perry Cox. A particle may exist in "every possible state," but in most cases, that's not a whole lot of states. It's usually spin-up or spin-down, decayed or not-decayed, that sort of thing. It's not a matter of position ('state' and 'position' are not interchangable). And we don't have to look at it to collapse the wavefunction.

Furthermore, it's not following "the laws we made up for it," it's following the laws of physics, which we discovered through observation, not just by deciding on them. It follows those laws whether or not we're measuring it. There's some neat stuff with one particle being in multiple places at once, but that's going back to decoherence. I'll explain it if necessary, but it's long, involved, and totally consistent with the laws of the universe, whether or not we're looking at it. "State" does not mean "position." Period.

By looking at it, it loses this weird quantum state of being everywhere and goes into a state of being in one place. And we (humans) make that happen.
No, we don't. This is the problem with the term "observer"...in science, it doesn't refer to "some sentient being" it refers to "some measurement device." And even that's more limited than reality, because two particles randomly colliding is "measurement" enough to collapse a wavefunction.
But the latest experiments prove pretty conclusively that this is not it. The human mind causing the results was sort of come to through a process of elimination. It seemed like the only thing left that could cause it.
I'd like a citation for this. Because I have a feeling that it'll look like "Pan, P. (2007). 'Bullshit.' The Journal of Never-Never Land, 1(45), 1-3" (ye gods, I hate APA style. Hope that's right, though).

The superposition state collapses when the system interacts with any other system, whether it's human or not. If your various misunderstandings were true, then there wouldn't have been a universe for humans to develop in in the first place.

Google "God does not play dice with the universe". Einstein said this. Things should NOT happen randomly.
Einstein was wrong. He disliked the implications of quantum mechanics, and refused to accept that it was true. Eventually, he was forced to recognize his error. He had a similar experience with the theory of universal expansion, and developed the cosmological constant to force the universe into a static state. Later, he called it the greatest blunder of his career. The universe rarely turns out to be what we want it to be, and that simple fact ought to be enough to drive a stake through the heart of "The Secret."
Anyways, my point is that our latest scientific thinking speculates that the mind can influence reality, and that the human mind has some role in the universe.
No, it really doesn't. The latest scientific thinking shows empirically that measurment can influence what state a system collapses into. Its effects are more or less limited to the world of the very, very tiny and very, very short time spans. It has nothing to do with the human mind.

I reiterate my plea: please, please, please, do not think you can understand quantum mechanics by reading a couple of short articles or scrolling through Wikipedia. You can't, and you'll only create greater confusion and misconception by trying. If you want to understand these concepts, you're going to have to talk to an actual person about them, and you'll probably need to take some actual time and actual effort.

Speaking as someone who knows quantum physics moderately well, your understanding is mostly misconception and a little woo, wrapped around a tiny grain of scientific fact. Quantum Mechanics does not justify the Secret, and in fact, as with all science, shows that the "law of attraction" simply is not true.

'Ladies and gentlemen, let's get ready to rrrrrrrumble!

In the blue corner we have Kevin. Bleever, article reader, non-physicist, sensitive soul. In the red corner Tom Foss, skeptic, agnostic, physicist, someone who knows of which he speaks.'

Someone pass the popcorn, this should be good.

Here's my own meagre contribution though. Kevin, I'd rather you answered Tom than this but if you find the time:

Even IF, and there's no way I know of that I can really visually demonstrate how big that 'if' is, but even if the mind did affect reality as you claim, you still haven't explained how you leap from there to the mind causes the universe to give you what you want, whatever that is.

By stating what amounts to 'Its quantam physics what does it.' you've made an equivalent argument to 'It's biology what does it.' when asked to explain human evolution. OK yes it is, but that still doesn't explain the mechanism.

So, how does quantam physics explain the 'law' of attraction? Please show all your working.

*hands Tom a rolled-up newspaper*

One phrase I've considered using to get a point across: "Observation is a specialized form of whacking." The wave function collapses when it interacts with another particle (gets whacked). We observe things by whacking them. In order for me to look at a rock, I have to have a light shining on it, which more than likely warms up the rock: changes it very slightly, so that the light can bounce off of it and into my eyes.

Same thing with electrons and photons: The problem is that they're so tiny, so we can't really do anything to them without affecting them in a big way.

Okay, Tom: If I got any of that wrong, feel free to observe me with that rolled-up newspaper.

I'm willing to give Kevin the benefit of the doubt. He actually linked to pages that are actually scientifically accurate (albeit simplified), so it's entirely possible that he's just been confused by some of the complicated ideas and vague terminology. I can't blame him; this is tough stuff, and he wouldn't be the first to honestly try to understand it and think that it has implications that don't quite work out. Nearly all of quantum mechanics is somehow counterintuitive, and it takes (in my case, anyway) several months (if not longer) of frequent exposure, discussion, and exercise to actually start thinking in a quantum mode. He's not John Vincent, waltzing in here with a smug attitude and quantum flapdoodle, he's just got some mixed-up ideas about a difficult field...at least, that's how it looks to me right now.

BD, that looks pretty good. I'm sure I could find fault in it if I tried (and if it weren't the waning days of spring break), but that's about the jist of it. The "special form of whacking" is perfect.

Nice one, Dog! I've always said that in order to see something, we need to illuminate it. When we get down to the quantum scale, there's nothing we can use to light up the scene that isn't at least as energetic as the things we're trying to observe. It's like trying to observe a man's path through a dense, jostling crowd of people - you cannot tell what his path would have been without the crowd.

While the Secret was an unmistakeable piece of infomercial claptrap, the notion of the mind having an effect upon the physical should not be dismissed as out of hand as has been done.

I'll refer you to:
http://www.princeton.edu/~pear/human_machine.html

Obviously the observed deviations from chance through the conscious will of the human operators is not on the order of 'wish I had a new Cadillac,' but the data would appear to show the result of some side effect of conscious thought.

Do we humans have anything like a complete understanding of reality, no? Do the hucksters selling The Secret have anything new to offer? I'm sure. There'll be the Secret 2, the Secret for Dummies, the Secret Decoder Ring,The Secret House Parties... It is a great complement for Dianetics, they'd make an ideal weekend seminar doubleheader...

nibbol.

Quoting research by PEAR is not exactly going to convince people.

See the Skeptics Dictionary entry on PEAR:
http://www.skepdic.com/pear.html>PEAR

Or got to http://www.randi.org/>JREF and search for PEAR.

Check out http://www.skepticreport.com/pseudoscience/shapesintheclouds.htm>The Skeptic Report

Or http://goodmath.blogspot.com/2006/05/repearing-bad-math.html>Good Math

In short, you'll have to do better than PEAR to show that the human mind can affect the physical universe.

"In short, you'll have to do better than PEAR to show that the human mind can affect the physical universe."

Okay, how about your computer? Your car? Your house? Your city? Nation? That the human mind can affect the physical universe is a given. What is open to debate is how and at what levels? When (as has happened) what seems logically implausible (say quantum teleportation) becomes accepted science, who is to say that further research will not uncover a scientific explanation for all manner of what is considered paranormal.

Before you can decide the limits of consciousness you need to understand wtf it is in the first place. And, we are pretty much at the beginning of that process. We have yet to even reach a concensus on a definition.

One aspect of this subject that has always fascinated me is a meta-analysis of the strong correlation between observed results in PSI experiments and the person(s) conducting them. Either an openness to the notion of PSI leads to careless experimentation and skepticism cuts like a razor through experimental bias, or the experimenters have inserted themselves into their experiments.

Okay, how about your computer? Your car? Your house? Your city? Nation? That the human mind can affect the physical universe is a given. What is open to debate is how and at what levels? When (as has happened) what seems logically implausible (say quantum teleportation) becomes accepted science, who is to say that further research will not uncover a scientific explanation for all manner of what is considered paranormal.

Equivocation. All of those things that exist now use known physical mechanism. We affected them by sending electrochemical neural signals to our hands to build and operate them.

Aside from that, you're missing the whole point: PEAR was a big, fat, whopping failure. The only "success" they had involved a lot of dishonest statistical legerdemain.

And, of course, you have to stick in the libelous, dishonest, malicious mischaracterization of skeptics: This isn't about us applying limits. Skepticism has never been about setting limits: It's about assuming the null hypothesis until someone falsifies it. PEAR utterly failed to do that, and what's more: They used dishonest means to fake successes.

Okay, how about your computer? Your car? Your house? Your city? Nation? That the human mind can affect the physical universe is a given.
You're shifting the goalposts. That's the human mind affecting the physical universe through human action. There's a mediating factor.
who is to say that further research will not uncover a scientific explanation for all manner of what is considered paranormal.
And who's to say that it won't? You can't base an argument on evidence that hasn't yet been shown and on science that has yet to be conducted. Appealing to the future is a fruitless enterprise.

As far as current science, and paranormal investigations over the last several hundred years, no, the mind cannot directly influence the universe.

One aspect of this subject that has always fascinated me is a meta-analysis of the strong correlation between observed results in PSI experiments and the person(s) conducting them. Either an openness to the notion of PSI leads to careless experimentation and skepticism cuts like a razor through experimental bias, or the experimenters have inserted themselves into their experiments.
It's the first part, as any examination will prove (and has proven). PEAR, SRI, and others of their ilk do not use proper controls, do not eliminate the possibility of cheating, and fudge the results to fit their conclusions. Try checking out "Flim-Flam" by James Randi to see both those groups (and several others) exposed for the pseudoscience they are.

Nibbol:

If we don’t know what consciousness is then you can’t draw any conclusions about how consciousness affects reality. You can’t draw any conclusions from a lack of knowledge.

Your argument sounds a little like an appeal to “science doesn’t know everything”. Further research might uncover all sorts of things, but that’s no reason to suppose the paranormal is real.

"And, of course, you have to stick in the libelous, dishonest, malicious mischaracterization of skeptics: This isn't about us applying limits. Skepticism has never been about setting limits: It's about assuming the null hypothesis until someone falsifies it."

Wow. I missed where I stuck in the 'libelous, dishonest, malicious mischaracterization of skeptics'. Must watch that.

"You're shifting the goalposts. That's the human mind affecting the physical universe through human action. There's a mediating factor."

Right, but the fundamental question is where/what is that mediating factor? There is crossover from a non-physical 'intent' to physical results: neural firings, muscles flexing...

"If we don’t know what consciousness is then you can’t draw any conclusions about how consciousness affects reality. You can’t draw any conclusions from a lack of knowledge."

Ultimately consciousness appears to act as an anti-entropic mechanism (or not depending on your consciousness ). I was only trying to point out our current limited state of understanding. In order to move any of this forward a consenses definition for consciousness must be arrived at. Until such time, arguments get bogged in semantics. First we do that, then we build something that can satisfy that definition and ask it what's going on in its mind.

The bottom line is that the is a very simple explanation why people continue to annoy the shit out of self-professed skeptics and that is personal experience. People have and continue to experience the anomolous and, consequently, find it hard to accept that they have not experieneced what they know they have. I know they are all incredibly thick, but what do you want from a bunch of apes? We're hard-wired to be credulous, and probably a damn good thing as we'd probably still be swinging in the trees otherwise.

There is crossover from a non-physical 'intent' to physical results: neural firings, muscles flexing...
Intent requires firing neurons, as all thought does. It is very much a physical process.
Ultimately consciousness appears to act as an anti-entropic mechanism (or not depending on your consciousness ).
What does that even mean? Anti-entropic? Thinking, believe it or not, produces heat. Storing and processing information in the brain produces heat just as it does in a computer. It is very much an entropic process.
First we do that, then we build something that can satisfy that definition and ask it what's going on in its mind.
And until that point, it's senseless to say "we can influence the universe directly with our thoughts."
People have and continue to experience the anomolous and, consequently, find it hard to accept that they have not experieneced what they know they have.
Which is why it takes effort to correct them.
We're hard-wired to be credulous, and probably a damn good thing as we'd probably still be swinging in the trees otherwise.
And somehow I doubt that. Progress isn't made through credulity, it's made through experimentation and logic, whether it's a rigid scientific method or figuring out what length of spear is best for killing buffalo.

People have and continue to experience the anomolous and, consequently, find it hard to accept that they have not experieneced what they know they have.

Certainty is the result of closed-mindedness. Science merely claims confidence, and is open to future corrections.

We're hard-wired to be credulous, and probably a damn good thing as we'd probably still be swinging in the trees otherwise.

Are you claiming science is the province of the woo? Then why are woos so vehement in their opposition to the scientific method?

Quick and dirty scientific method:

1. Come up with lots of ideas.
2. Test those ideas.
3. Throw away the ones that fail.

Woos stop at step one. PEAR tried to fake doing steps 2 and 3, and we point out their fakery.

"Are you claiming science is the province of the woo? Then why are woos so vehement in their opposition to the scientific method?"

The Woos. Ah, yes, I grew up with them, lovely family. My recollection is that, as a whole, they were quite open to the scientific method, but I digress.

Okay, I will present Exhibit A: Sir Isaac Newton (who has been referenced numerous times in the thread) would, I believe, be a perfect fit for your definition of a 'woo'. If Sir I were to post here and speak of his views on subjects not covered in the Pricipia Mathematica I am fairly certain he would be summarily exiled to woodom. Do you not agree?

"People have and continue to experience the anomolous and, consequently, find it hard to accept that they have not experieneced what they know they have.

Certainty is the result of closed-mindedness. Science merely claims confidence, and is open to future corrections. "

Well, I am not sure what you are saying here. I merely asserted that people have experiences. In that sense, yes, certain they had an experience. Are you arguing that they should be open to the idea that they did not? Fine, but then you can go running down that rabbit hole all day. Is any experience real, blah blah blah.

I had been hoping that someone might care to pick up the really important aspect: consciousness. It's the one really big bitch in the realms of science, ain't it? Cuz you can try and dismiss it all you want but you only betray its existence by doing so. So, you apply the scientific method: experiment. Well, how do you experiment with consciousness? Many ways, though a lot of avenues would be considered either illegal (pychotropic drugs) or immoral (a number of very scientific highly inhumane methodologies spring to mind)

I see the term 'open-mindedness' bandied about, but I haven't seen much of it. The question is put forth: can consciousness affect matter? The answer: no. Not 'maybe', not 'we don't know','the jury is out', 'there are theories', etc; just: no.

Is that it?

"What does that even mean? Anti-entropic? Thinking, believe it or not, produces heat. Storing and processing information in the brain produces heat just as it does in a computer. It is very much an entropic process."

I am speaking of informational entropy. Isn't that what the scientific method, a mental abstraction, has been an attempt to do with the universe? Of course. We are constantly through our consciousness trying to push the entropy of the universe down from 1 to 0, to not see the unfolding of reality around us as an endless series of coin tosses.

To continue on the entropy vein: from the viewpoint of thermodynamic entropy, I would argue that consciousness works as an entropy-broker of sorts. Obviously from the viewpoint of an enclocing external system in which the consciousness is a part the thermodynamic entropy has increased in the manner stated: heat, etc, but that is a trade of that is made to the advantage of an apparent lower entropy at the level of the consciousness looking at the system it acts upon, for example, let's take someone's apartment/house in a cold climate. The conscious entity decides that they would like the interior of their house to be warmer than the exterior, and so turns on the heat. So, from the view of the interior of the house you have lowered the entropy, from the external frame the opposite. Like Maxwell's demon: from within the box it would seem that the demon has violated the 2nd law, and from the point of view of a conscious entity it is preferable to be on the warm side of the demon's box.

Have you ever collapsed a wavefunction?

Haven't we all?

Have your conscious decisons ever determined which wavefunctions you'd collapse and how?

Seems like it's all we ever do.

Ever get buried in the rubble of a collapsed wavefunction?

Skeptico replies to nibbol

Re: I had been hoping that someone might care to pick up the really important aspect: consciousness. It's the one really big bitch in the realms of science, ain't it? Cuz you can try and dismiss it all you want but you only betray its existence by doing so.

Personally I haven’t dismissed it. I’m just not going to make up stuff about it.

Re: The question is put forth: can consciousness affect matter? The answer: no. Not 'maybe', not 'we don't know','the jury is out', 'there are theories', etc; just: no.

That’s not the answer. Certainly not the answer I’ve given. The answer is there is no reason to suppose it does. Plus, there are good reasons to say consciousness does not affect reality the way the makers of The Secret claim.

I watched this movie, The Secret, a few days ago. I found it to be interesting. I haven't really formed an opinion of it yet. To help form an opinion, I have been doing some research. That is how I found this site and your "review".

To date all I have found (prior to this site) is information that supports this theory of "attraction". Much of it sientifically sound information. Much of it also historical, documented support. For example, if one reads of the Dead Sea Scrolls, one will find that there is a script (or book) amongst the Scrolls that talks about "the secret"...The Law of Attraction! This book was written over 2000 years ago. The name of this book is raz nihyah or something like that spelling. It stands to reason that this theory must have been around for much longer before it was it was scribed. I would say a theory that has stood the time of at least 2000 years, has at least some credit...Would you not agree?

I don't understand your above "review". Is this a case of art for art sake...Skeptic for skeptic sake? Do you have any information that actually supports your opinion? I have read you comments twice and I see no mention at all of anything factual that supports your opinion. I would be very interested if you do have any factual information, as it might help me form my opinion.

Thanks

You write – “I would say a theory that has stood the time of at least 2000 years, has at least some credit...Would you not agree?”

- No I would not. If it has been around for 2,000 years, all it means is that it is old. For it to be true it has to actually be true.

What is “factual” is that the Law of Attraction is not a Law like the Law Of Gravitation that they compare it to. You can read about Newton’s Law’s in scientific books and papers. You can also read about how scientific laws were derived. Newton’s Laws can be demonstrated by anyone – drop an object and its acceleration will be exactly as the Law predicts. And this really does “always work every time” – that’s why it’s a Law. The “Law Of Attraction” as they call it just doesn’t work that way.

I asked two questions in Law of Attraction not working for Joe Vitale:

1 Suppose there is a traffic jam. Some of the people caught in that jam had been worried about being late, and so possibly attracted the jam. What about the other people caught in the jam who had been positive, and had been thinking about being on time? How is the LOA working for them?

2 Imagine two people with identical bicycles. One locks up his bike because he is worried about theft. The other one is not worried about theft, and leaves his bike at the same place, unlocked. If the bike thief steals the unlocked bike, how is the LOA working for these two people? Or are you saying the bike thief will only steal the locked bike and ignore the unlocked one? If you are saying this, what studies have been done to show that this actually happens?

No one can answer these questions, except by saying that the Law of Attraction is not a scientific Law. That should tell you all you need to know. Unless you can answer the questions.

Okay, I will present Exhibit A: Sir Isaac Newton (who has been referenced numerous times in the thread) would, I believe, be a perfect fit for your definition of a 'woo'. If Sir I were to post here and speak of his views on subjects not covered in the Pricipia Mathematica I am fairly certain he would be summarily exiled to woodom. Do you not agree?
Yes, a man who studied nature and developed mathematical models based on his observation, models which have been repeatedly confirmed through experimentation, is precisely what we define as a "woo."

[/sarcasm]

While Newton was a bastard who may or may not have stolen Calculus and fudged his numbers, while he may or may not have believed crazy things outside of his science (I'm not up on the beliefs of Sir Isaac, though I seem to recall that he also studied alchemy), his work is unimpeachable science. He made observations, formed hypotheses, tested them, and came to conclusions based on that process. That's the very basis of science, and the very antithesis of woodom.

See, this is why we're "scientists" and not "Newtonists" or "scientistists." While a scientist may believe in magical underwear gnomes outside the lab, if his science is good and stands up to scrutiny, it's accepted. He may get laughed out of the lunchroom, but it's his performance in the journals that matters.

Well, I am not sure what you are saying here. I merely asserted that people have experiences. In that sense, yes, certain they had an experience. Are you arguing that they should be open to the idea that they did not? Fine, but then you can go running down that rabbit hole all day. Is any experience real, blah blah blah.
In many cases, yes, people should doubt their experiences. If someone says "I was abducted by aliens," they should really be open to the possibility that the experience was a dream, a hallucination, or a trick of memory and psychology.
I had been hoping that someone might care to pick up the really important aspect: consciousness. It's the one really big bitch in the realms of science, ain't it? Cuz you can try and dismiss it all you want but you only betray its existence by doing so.
Undefined terms are not "bitches." Until someone defines it, we can't dismiss it (or do anything else to it, for that matter).
Well, how do you experiment with consciousness? Many ways, though a lot of avenues would be considered either illegal (pychotropic drugs) or immoral (a number of very scientific highly inhumane methodologies spring to mind)
I suppose sticking people in PET scans and watching how their brains fire in response to certain stimuli would be out of the question. But then, I suppose you'd say that's not "consciousness," or something. Amazing how flexible poorly-defined words can be.
I see the term 'open-mindedness' bandied about, but I haven't seen much of it. The question is put forth: can consciousness affect matter? The answer: no. Not 'maybe', not 'we don't know','the jury is out', 'there are theories', etc; just: no.
Actually, it's "no, until evidence shows otherwise." Or maybe "no, to the best of current knowledge." Science always assumes the null hypothesis until it is disproven. Until there is credible evidence that "consciousness" can directly influence the universe, we have no reason to say "maybe" or "the jury is out," any more than we should say "maybe" to "do unicorns exist" or "the jury is out" to "is there a dragon in your garage?"
I am speaking of informational entropy. Isn't that what the scientific method, a mental abstraction, has been an attempt to do with the universe? Of course. We are constantly through our consciousness trying to push the entropy of the universe down from 1 to 0, to not see the unfolding of reality around us as an endless series of coin tosses.
I still have no idea what you're talking about. I recognize all those words individually, but together they fail to form anything coherent. The scientific method is a systematic way of understanding the universe and the very real laws which govern it. There is randomness, certainly, but randomness within certain knowable confines.
So, from the view of the interior of the house you have lowered the entropy, from the external frame the opposite.
Um...no, you haven't. Any time you increase the heat, you increase entropy. "Entropy" doesn't mean "something we don't like," it means "disorder of a system." Just because you want more heat doesn't mean the system of the house isn't disordered.
Have you ever collapsed a wavefunction?

Haven't we all?


Certainly we have. You get a cookie.

Have your conscious decisons ever determined which wavefunctions you'd collapse and how?
Not particularly, no. I don't often consciously encounter superposition states, and I certainly haven't noticed any statistically significant effect of consciousness on whether or not isotopes decay and when.

Of course, all that depends on which interpretation is correct, and so far that's not certain.

Ever get buried in the rubble of a collapsed wavefunction?
Only on the midterm.
Much of it sientifically sound information.
I've not heard of this sience of which you speak. I can tell you, though, that science does not support The Secret.
I would say a theory that has stood the time of at least 2000 years, has at least some credit...Would you not agree?
No, I would not agree. Astrology and Alchemy have been around for as long or longer, and neither of them are correct either. The age of an idea has nothing to do with whether or not it is correct.
I don't understand your above "review". Is this a case of art for art sake...Skeptic for skeptic sake? Do you have any information that actually supports your opinion? I have read you comments twice and I see no mention at all of anything factual that supports your opinion. I would be very interested if you do have any factual information, as it might help me form my opinion.
Oh dear FSM. We have nothing but facts. Facts and logic. We have nothing but the two quantities of fact and logic. And evidence. Three quantities! Fact, logic, and evidence. And common sense! Four! The four quantities employed by the skeptics are facts, logic, evidence, and common sense. And a total devotion to the scientific method. Five!

Bet you weren't expecting the Spanish Inquisition. See, science says that you can't get something for nothing. The facts say that there is an external universe which exists objectively and independently of wishful thinking. Logic says that the Secret is solipsism and fairy tales. Common sense says that if you wish in your left hand and shit in the right, your right hand will fill up much faster. The Secret simply has nothing going for it but a flashy movie and some old-age BS.

"I still have no idea what you're talking about. I recognize all those words individually, but together they fail to form anything coherent."

Okay, I'll put up a few points and see if we take them as given:

From any given point the rest of the universe exists as a number of signals carried in various media. Now if that point is occupied by some lump of consciously inert matter, then the entropy of that universal signal would be either at or near 1. AKA The rest of existence might just as well be an endless series of coin flips. If we replace that locus with something conscious, which, presumably, would at least imply some form of signal processing ability as a precursor, then the more 'conscious' the better able it is to lower the informational entropy of that incoming signal, eg it can apply previous experience to anticipate the content of that signal before it arrives. You don't need to wait for the rock to hit you in the head, you duck.

Comprehensibility isn't your strong suit, is it, nibbol?

How do you calculate the 'entropy of the universe signal'?

I'm guessing it has absolutely nothing to do with thermodynamics.

So nibbol, is PEAR research valid and does it support your argument, or not?

If it is no longer valid, then what scientific theories or experiments support your argument? If it is still valid, how do you account for it being so, well, wrong, worthless and dishonest?

Enquiring minds want to know.

How do you define consciousness?
How do you believe your definition of consciousness fits in with the view that consciousness directly affects the physical universe?

That the human mind can affect the physical universe is a given.

Prove it. Use your definition of consciousness if it helps, and I am sure it will.

What you highlighted was that the human mind can direct physical actions that cause physical reactions. This is not what the secret and its believers say. The secret argues the mind directly affects the universe, or reality, without any intermediary of directed physical action. Prove that the human mind directly created a computer, a house, a car, a city, a nation, without intermediary physical action.

When (as has happened) what seems logically implausible (say quantum teleportation) becomes accepted science, who is to say that further research will not uncover a scientific explanation for all manner of what is considered paranormal.

Gee, the old 'Science doesn't know everything. People used to think the world was flat. Science has been wrong before.' arguments rolled up in just one sentence. And who is to say that what seems to be made up nonsense to make money out of suckers isn't just made up nonsense to make money out of suckers?

What you are saying is no matter how ridiculous and implausible something is, we should accept it is possible. This intellectual relativism is misplaced and wrong. Some ideas really are just stupid.

Before you play the 'Well {insert famous brilliant scientist} came up with this idea and everyone thought he was wrong, but it turns out he was right.' card try to understand that they saw something in real science and drew a different conclusion to everyone else. They didn't pull a crazy idea out of their arse that just happened to be true.

If your stuck for an answer to this, try the 'science needs a paradigm shift' argument.

One aspect of this subject that has always fascinated me is a meta-analysis of the strong correlation between observed results in PSI experiments and the person(s) conducting them.

One aspect of arguing with bleevers that has always fascinated me is that they hate meta-analyses when it shows the chosen woo is rubbish (homeopathy, acupuncture for example), but love them (or are fascinted by them) when they seem to offer support to their woo.

Right, but the fundamental question is where/what is that mediating factor? There is crossover from a non-physical 'intent' to physical results: neural firings, muscles flexing...

The mediating factor is that the mind is limited to the human body it resides in, and can therefore only act on the universe through that physical body. The mind does not directly act on the universe.

Let's do an experiment shall we? I'm wishing really hard for you to pop out of existence. Still here? All your talk of intent means nothing, because without the direct physical intermediary action, intent is all it remains. In other words, the thought itself does not affect reality.

We're hard-wired to be credulous

Presumably you have some proof of this rather than just an assertion? See, if we were credulous we'd still be picking bugs out of each others hair. Science does not work on 'Because it does.' It works on wanting to know, 'Why?'

Okay, I will present Exhibit A: Sir Isaac Newton (who has been referenced numerous times in the thread) would, I believe, be a perfect fit for your definition of a 'woo'.

Is there an original argument left out there for woos? 'Well famous scientist X believed some nonsense so you must think they're an idiot too.' Please do tell us what our definition of woo is then, so that we might know why he does fit it.

If Sir I were to post here and speak of his views on subjects not covered in the Pricipia Mathematica I am fairly certain he would be summarily exiled to woodom. Do you not agree?

No, I don't agree. Newton + Alchemy + god = woo. Newton + mathematics + science = genius.

What he was wrong about does not mean we would dismiss what he was right about. I'm sure you believe it would, but you need to look around skeptical and scientific sites a lot more if you do. Skeptics and scientists regularly are baffled because people who are genuinely intelligent believe nonsense, but they don't summarily exile to woodom the work that isn't nonsense.

The important factor to note though, is that what Newton was right about, he was right about. That's what seperates him from your average woo proponent.

It's the one really big bitch in the realms of science, ain't it?

Not really, there are lots of them. Should science concentrate more effort on consciousness? Yes. Is science concentrating more effort on consciousness? Yes. Should they approach it in the way you want? Absolutely not.

Tom:
Common sense says that if you wish in your left hand and shit in the right, your right hand will fill up much faster.

Funniest.Line.Ever.

What-The?
To date all I have found (prior to this site) is information that supports this theory of "attraction".

Then you really aren't looking very hard.

Much of it sientifically sound information.

Do please provide a reference for this.

For example, if one reads of the Dead Sea Scrolls, one will find that there is a script (or book) amongst the Scrolls that talks about "the secret"...The Law of Attraction!

Wow. Those ancients are always surprising us. They knew about wishful thinking too.

I would say a theory that has stood the time of at least 2000 years, has at least some credit...Would you not agree?

Absolutely not. The Hindu Caste system. Widow burning. Astrology. Homeopathy. Acupuncture. Tribal creation myths. Female genital mutilation. Fuedalism. Absolute monarchy. Human sacrifice for religious purposes. Religion. Geo-centrism. Ghosts.

See, old ideas can be downright fucking stupid.

Age has nothing to do with how right something is. Unless your a bleever, then it's pretty much all you have.

Do you have any information that actually supports your opinion?

You really aren't researching very hard are you? Just because it doesn't back up your point of view, doesn't mean it doesn't count.

Thank you, you have answered my questions. So I shall answer yours...

"No one can answer these questions, except by saying that the Law of Attraction is not a scientific Law. That should tell you all you need to know. Unless you can answer the questions."

I must be No one! haha.

These questions you ask are without any real thought, aren't they?

I believe that there are a few cities around the World that have managed to solve in part their traffic problems. Most, however, share the problem. Almost every city in the World has major traffic problems. That equates not to thousands but in FACT millions of people thinking about and worrying about traffic!! Does the thoughts of millions (and in some cities tens of millions) of people have an affect or not? You would imply that it does not because there might be some people with more possitive thoughts.

You are just making things up. No where did they say that you can solve a traffic jam just by thinking about it. What they said is if you think you are in a traffic jam, then you are. If you think you are just going with the flow, instead, then you are!

As for the bicycle question...Yes. An un-locked bicycle is safer! A quick example. 15 years ago my car was broken into and $5 was stolen. It's a Ute. They did $200 damage to the door to get the $5. I had $2000 worth of power tools in the ute tray, completely open. Did they take the tools that were there? No. They could have taken the tools without doing any damage.

It is a scientific FACT (psycology) that if something is left open it is safer. The moment you put a lock on it, the "criminal" mind will think there is something of value inside!

You are making things up again. No where, did they say that just thinking about it will stop your bicycle from being stolen. How many locks did he put on? 3 I think it was...The example they gave in the movie was this man has thought so much about locking his bicycle, that it has become an obsession to him that it not be stolen. So when it was stolen, it has a much bigger affect.

Newton has nothing to do with it. I think you are just trying to justify your own inventions. They did not say that this "secret" is like gravity. They said this is not the ONLY universal "law". They said there are others, for example gravity! Maybe you would prefer if they had have listed all and every other universal "law" as an example of the fact that there is more than one?

I ask you again, do you have any FACTUAL information to support your OPINION that this is not correct? Or is it simply just your opinion?

"See, old ideas can be downright fucking stupid."

Really Jimmy?

Let me try this...Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are fat. Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are ugly...etc, etc. And so they are..because they "think" they are. Many of these people are being treated by psychiatrists. Why? Because it is a scientific and medical FACT that the power of thought is making these people fat and ugly!

For you to be correct, 100's of thousands (maybe millions) of psychiartists MUST BE WRONG!

What I think is that you have little or no true intellect. Any person that finds the need to use volgarities to express an opinion, is very little in mind.

Yep...art for art sake!

Skeptico replies to What-The

Re: You would imply that it does not because there might be some people with more possitive thoughts.

I’m not implying that; the filmmakers are saying that. But thanks for confirming they are wrong.

Re: No where did they say that you can solve a traffic jam just by thinking about it. What they said is if you think you are in a traffic jam, then you are.

No, they said that the person worrying about being late attracts the traffic jam. Perhaps you didn’t watch the film very closely. However, I note you can’t answer the actual question I asked – again, confirming the film is wrong. Thanks again.

Re: It is a scientific FACT (psycology) that if something is left open it is safer.

References, please, to the studies have been done to show that a locked bike is more likely to be stolen than an unlocked one.

Re: You are making things up again. No where, did they say that just thinking about it will stop your bicycle from being stolen.

Sorry, you are wrong. That’s exactly what they said. That is why the film is absurd. Again thanks for confirming it.

Re: They did not say that this "secret" is like gravity.

Wrong again – Joe Vitale said the LOA is exactly like gravity.

You are the one with no factual information. If you think The Secret is correct and the LOA is a scientific law, please present your evidence. Your claim, you back it up. Or go away. But stop trolling.

What-The? (incidentally, entirely appropriate choice of blog name.)

That equates not to thousands but in FACT millions of people thinking about and worrying about traffic!! Does the thoughts of millions (and in some cities tens of millions) of people have an affect or not? You would imply that it does not because there might be some people with more possitive thoughts.

So what use is the secret if it can be overruled by everyone else? I'm following the secret, but everyone else is not. I think positive thoughts about something that they are not thinking positively about, so I'm overruled. In other words. It's useless.

Yes. An un-locked bicycle is safer!

I have always had doubts about the sanity of some bleevers. Here's proof positive.

No. They could have taken the tools without doing any damage.

And how could they have sold them on for money? And how long would it have taken? Junkies don't need a fix in two weeks after paying a fence and avoiding the police. If they were on foot, how would they have gotten away with the tools you needed to drive around in a truck?

It is a scientific FACT (psycology) that if something is left open it is safer. The moment you put a lock on it, the "criminal" mind will think there is something of value inside!

Presumably, since it's a FACT, you'll be able to cite the experiments and results, or provide the source of the publication of the results.

You are making things up again.

Oh you cheeky monkey. Unlike making up scientific FACTS I suppose. I guess when you make things up they are real, silly me.

I ask you again, do you have any FACTUAL information to support your OPINION that this is not correct? Or is it simply just your opinion?

Since they appear to have escaped you, read Tom Foss' posts on quantam physics as a start. You know, real science not the made up kind. And anyway, do you have any FACTUAL information to back up your OPINION?

"See, old ideas can be downright fucking stupid."

Really Jimmy?

Yes, really. Or do you think genital mutilation is a good idea?

Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are fat. Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are ugly...etc, etc. And so they are..because they "think" they are.

Riiiightt. So it has nothing to do with too much cake then? Let me just ask you this then genius. Do they think they are fat before or after they are actually fat? How about ugly? Is there some way you know that a foetus can determine it is ugly before it is actually, well, born ugly?

How about anorexics or bulemics? Is a 5 stone adult anorexic fat because they think they are fat? Are they skinny because they think they are fat. I'm confused. I used to date a bulemic many years ago, she was not in any way remotely fat, but she thought she was. I guess actually you're just full of shit.

Why? Because it is a scientific and medical FACT that the power of thought is making these people fat and ugly!

You know, you sound a lot like Mora. So please do tell. How does your version of the secret explain what happens to rape victims? Do they actually want it to happen?

Please do show the sources for your scientific FACT that the power of thought makes people fat and ugly. How precisely does thought affect the physical make up of a body?

You know, I think you are actually a prankster. No-one could be that dense.

What I think is that you have little or no true intellect. Any person that finds the need to use volgarities to express an opinion, is very little in mind.

'Teacher teacher, that skeptic used a bad word.' Grow up.

How would you describe someone who can't spell or abide by grammatic rules, intellectually speaking?

"I used to date a bulemic many years ago, she was not in any way remotely fat, but she thought she was."

Jimmy...What? That is impossible. She could not have "thought" that she was fat when she was not! That would make you WRONG!!!

You are saying that the power of thought does not exist, it's a myth...Remember?

You are not just a pathetic, rude, little person but you are also a complete and utter idiot.
...............

"Or go away."

Goodbye.

As I stated above, I came accross your site while doing some research into this. I assumed that I might get some usefull input. But rather all I see is a bunch of clowns just saying silly things without any basis. Maybe you should visit some of the reputable skeptic sites, where they give actual reasons for being skeptical...Rather than just simply saying everything is wrong just for the sake of it.

Good luck and I wish you well.

Wow, sorry to disappoint any fans, but I really had no idea what I was talking about. My post was pure speculation. I actually said in it that no, there is no scientific proof of the Secret. If there was then, well, we wouldn't be having this dicussion.

And by the way, the Universal Law of Gravitation thing ... it came up wrong when it tried to predict the orbit of some planet or asteroid or something which I read many years ago in a physics textbook. Einstein's theories were needed to correctly account for this detail which Newton's law couldn't. They called it a flaw ... so that's where my whole Universal Law Is Not A Law rant came from. But anyways, it doesn't seem important anymore.

Let me saw that, no, I have no understanding of quantum physics. I decided to research in that direction because there were some quantum physicists in the Secret, so I wanted to see if there was anything that supported them. Apparently not. Thanks :).

I can't speak in dramatic fashion like the two polarized sides of this argument. The people who made the Secret sound convincing because they make sweeping claims that it'll change your life, which sounds good to many people. The skeptics sound convincing because they can say with certainty that there is no scientific proof that it exists, and because they're right, it's definitely convincing. And then there's little me, who is just trying to get through my life with an open mind. I've always been very logical and skeptical, but as I went through life, I began finding that there is more to it that we can see. I didn't become religious and probably never will, but I became convinced that I've experienced things too many times that don't fit into the logical view of the world.

I know what I've experienced. I'm trying to figure out what it is. That's where I'm coming from. To live in a world of pure science doesn't seem like a good idea to me, because science explains so little. At the same time, to give your unwavering belief to what some religious or spiritual nut tells you doesn't seem like a good idea to me either.

The topic of consciousness is interesting. Consciousness really is a bitch of a problem for science. No part of the brain was built to support consciousness or self-awareness, and yet it exists.

nibbol: "There is crossover from a non-physical 'intent' to physical results: neural firings, muscles flexing..."

Tom Foss: "Intent requires firing neurons, as all thought does. It is very much a physical process."

... or firing neurons requires intent. They're so interconnected, how can we say which is causing which? When I want to lift my arm, are you saying that a neuron or two fires first, which creates the consciousness-level intent to raise my arm, and then my intent causes more neurons to fire which raises my arm? The stimulus I was receiving from the surrounding environment combined with the current physical state of my brain triggered my programming to want to raise my arm at that particular moment? And these neurons also directed my self-aware consciousness to produce the thoughts associated with deciding to raise my arm? There's no free will?

Or is my intent created through some non-physical process... the elusive consciousness? And if it is the consciousness, then, wow, consciousness is influencing the universe! It causes your neurons to fire.

Okay, may it's not that simple. It's something to think about though. Last I heard, the brain/consciousness academics still have no consensus on which comes first... the physical or the mental.

If we replace that locus with something conscious, which, presumably, would at least imply some form of signal processing ability as a precursor, then the more 'conscious' the better able it is to lower the informational entropy of that incoming signal, eg it can apply previous experience to anticipate the content of that signal before it arrives. You don't need to wait for the rock to hit you in the head, you duck.
So in this case, a fairly simple robot with a visual sensor, some programming in physics, and an uncomplicated AI would be considered "conscious"?
It is a scientific FACT (psycology) that if something is left open it is safer. The moment you put a lock on it, the "criminal" mind will think there is something of value inside!
Please, provide the peer-reviewed papers that support it. If all we need are anecdotes, then let me direct you to the pizza delivery guy who served me a couple of years ago, who no longer left his car running while he made the trip to the door, because he'd had his car stolen twice doing that.
They did not say that this "secret" is like gravity. They said this is not the ONLY universal "law". They said there are others, for example gravity! Maybe you would prefer if they had have listed all and every other universal "law" as an example of the fact that there is more than one?
Yes, actually, Joe Vitale did in fact say that it was a universal law, just like gravity, and that it works 100% of the time. This doesn't jive with the facts of the universe. Period.
I ask you again, do you have any FACTUAL information to support your OPINION that this is not correct? Or is it simply just your opinion?
Well, there's the simple, verifiable fact that wishing for things does not cause them to appear. And the complete lack of supportive evidence coming from the Secret folks. Your ad hoc "millions of people worry about traffic, therefore you get in a jam" is not what the LoA suggests. It says that you yourself all alone cause the traffic jam by worrying about it, and if you don't worry about it, if you envision clear roads, you won't get stuck. This is not true.
Let me try this...Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are fat. Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are ugly...etc, etc. And so they are..because they "think" they are.
Tell that to anorexics and bulimics, who think they are fat even when they are so skinny that their health is suffering. Tell that to people with body dysmorphic disorder, who believe they are ugly or deformed, even when they are not.

Then again, beauty is entirely subjective. The magical delivery of a bike to my doorstep is not. And so far, all my wishing for that bike hasn't amounted to squat.

Many of these people are being treated by psychiatrists. Why? Because it is a scientific and medical FACT that the power of thought is making these people fat and ugly!
Being fat is, to some degree, completely within a person's ability to control. If you eat well and exercise frequently, and you don't happen to have an endomorphic body type, you won't be fat. Ugliness is a subjective quantity, very much in the eye of the beholder. People see psychiatrists about these disorders because getting control of them is a psychological thing. Gaining the hope of being thin, which motivates you to exercise, is a psychological process. You don't think "no, I'm actually thin" and magically drop the weight. Gaining the self-esteem necessary to be comfortable with your looks is a psychological process. You don't think "hey, I'm actually a supermodel" and suddenly have your appearance change.

Not only are these psychological processes (far different from the "I wish I had a new bike" example in the film--no psychiatrist can help you with that!), but they still require more work than just wishing them to be true. That's why people go to psychiatrists more than once.

What I think is that you have little or no true intellect. Any person that finds the need to use volgarities to express an opinion, is very little in mind.
Do we really need to go through this again?
Jimmy...What? That is impossible. She could not have "thought" that she was fat when she was not! That would make you WRONG!!!
Yeabuhwha?

Last I checked, you're the one saying that people are X because they think they're X. In fact, I believe it was "And so they are..because they "think" they are." What Jimmy (and I, thinking alike) have presented is a case where someone thinks they are X, but are in fact, not-X. Which rather refutes your point precisely.

But rather all I see is a bunch of clowns just saying silly things without any basis.
Wow, that's exactly what I saw when I watched the Secret.

By the way, Kevin, good to see you've considered the evidence, and better to see that I hadn't misjudged in giving you the benefit of the doubt. We could argue about the "ghost in the machine" of consciousness, but so far there are only two things I can say with any degree of certainty:
1. You can do physical things to the brain which change "consciousness." One such thing is to severely damage the brain in certain areas, which will remove consciousness. Thus, consciousness must somehow be connected to the physical brain.
2. This argument is almost entirely philosophical, and will likely remain so until "consciousness" is defined in specific, testable, falsifiable terms.

Jimmy...What? That is impossible. She could not have "thought" that she was fat when she was not! That would make you WRONG!!!

Umm...Either you're just plain old trolling or you are a fucking retard. The very reason people become anorexic or bulimic is that they see fat where it isn't. It's one of the prime symptoms. They honestly believe themselves to be fat, when in reality they are dangerously malnourished and/or emaciated.

There's also a well-known psychological disorder known as "body dismorphic disorder" wherein average-looking people think they are so unspeakable hideous/fat/etc. that they can't interact with others. These are people who are not what they honestly believe themselves to be.

And what of the delusional mental patient who believes himself to be Napoleon or Jesus? They really think they are someone else, but they are not. Their thought does not create that reality.

And so they are..because they "think" they are. Many of these people are being treated by psychiatrists. Why? Because it is a scientific and medical FACT that the power of thought is making these people fat and ugly!

No, it is a scientific and medical FACT that eating too fucking much will make you fat. Thinking you are fat will not cause your body to suddenly begin storing mass amounts of uningested carbohydrates as fat. You have to actually ingest raw materials to get fatter, you fucking shitnugget.

Saying someone is "ugly" because they think they are is potentially even dumber, as there's no objective standard for "ugly." It's not even a measureable effect, so all we have, really, is the thought of ugly.

Christ, you're stupid.

"I used to date a bulemic many years ago, she was not in any way remotely fat, but she thought she was."

Jimmy...What? That is impossible. She could not have "thought" that she was fat when she was not! That would make you WRONG!!!

What are you dribbling about?

No, it would make you wrong genius. She was not fat, but she thought she was, hence the bulimia in an effort to make herself thinner. She did think she was fat, she was completely convinced she was fat, when she wasn't. According to what you said her thinking she is fat makes her fat, I'll quote your own words if you need me to. Oh I'll do it anyway:

Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are fat. Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are ugly...etc, etc. And so they are..because they "think" they are.

She thought she was fat, and she wasn't. This example, and the example of every other bulemic or anorexic, absolutely proves that you are utterly, incontrovertibly, completely, unarguably wrong in the assertion just quoted. An assertion you claim proves the secret.

You are saying that the power of thought does not exist, it's a myth...Remember?

What the hell are you talking about? I say that thinking something doesn't make it so. She thought she was fat. She wasn't. So thinking something didn't make it so. This example supports me. It proves that the power of thought as described by the secret is a myth. Why is this so hard for you to understand? How exactly do you think this proves me wrong?

You are not just a pathetic, rude, little person but you are also a complete and utter idiot.

And you're a big booger head.

"is the thought of ugly."

Oh well since all are doing it...Akusai, You are the biggest total fuckwit on here! You are a bigger fucking idiot that jimmy.

You cannot agree with me and then say I am wrong! How can you say that these people only "think" they are fat and at the same time say that the power of thought, the affect of thinking, does not exist?...Oh, hang on, I know why...It's because you are too fucking STUPID to understand the theory. But I cannot help it if you are brain dead.
...............

"An assertion you claim proves the secret."

Jimmy, you are not just brain dead...You are totally fucking brain dead!! My "assertion" as you put it and what you say, proves that the power of thoughts DO have an affect on a person. You are not a skeptic...you are a hypocrite.

"She wasn't. So thinking something didn't make it so. This example supports me."

It did in HER MIND!! So NO, it does not support you...What it does do is show that you are a total fuckwit! Because you say this power of thought does not exist!

"And you're a big booger head." hahahahahaha...Nice from a total fuckhead!
.............

What is it with this bike appearing out of nothing??? The boy "wished" for it and the MAN PURCHASED IT FOR HIM !!!

Did you get that? THE MAN PURCHASED IT FOR HIM.

Call this number... 1800 psychtest.

I see things have descended once more...

One quick note, upon reflection, I reversed the frames in the house heating entropy. Yes, by heating my house I have increased the entropy inside my house, but taking the initial framework including the outside (and let's throw open the windows for thermal equilibrium), after closing said windows and heating my house I have decreased the entropy in the system of house+outside sufficiently to live through the cold.

Someone mentioned a robot and some AI and whether that would amount to being conscious. I would say that that'd be a good start. I would think consciousness to be a continuum from not and onward. Are humans conscious? Since we coined the term, we'd have to give it to ourselves. A rock? Probably not. Chimp? Seems to be. Dog? Rat? Ant? Somewhere along the evolutionary ladder you would agree (I would hope) that consciousness exists. As long as you built your robot to equivalent specs then, sure, conscious robot.

You cannot agree with me and then say I am wrong! How can you say that these people only "think" they are fat and at the same time say that the power of thought, the affect of thinking, does not exist?...Oh, hang on, I know why...It's because you are too fucking STUPID to understand the theory. But I cannot help it if you are brain dead.
What he's saying, you myopic imbecile, is that no one denies that thought exists as an ability. What they deny is your assertion (along with the assertion of the Secret) that thought has the power to directly influence or create reality. These are people who think X, but are not-X, which is absolutely the opposite of what you, and the Secret, say should be the case.
It did in HER MIND!! So NO, it does not support you...What it does do is show that you are a total fuckwit! Because you say this power of thought does not exist!
Yes, but something existing in the mind is not the same as something existing in the universe. Your claim was that a person is fat because they think they are fat. Jimmy, Akusai, and I, have all presented examples of people who think they are fat, but are in fact not fat. By your logic, if I think I am fat, I therefore become fat. You may think you're clever by shifting the goalposts to say "if I think I am fat, then I am fat IN MY MIND," but that's not what your original claim was, and it certainly isn't the claim of The Secret.

Thinking I have a bicycle, and wishing I had a bicycle, does not change the fact that I do not have a bicycle. Whether or not I have one "in my mind" does not change the fact that I do not actually have one.

What is it with this bike appearing out of nothing??? The boy "wished" for it and the MAN PURCHASED IT FOR HIM !!!

Did you get that? THE MAN PURCHASED IT FOR HIM.


Yes, but the man purchased it for him because of the power of the magical genie-universe and the boy's thought-shockwave. Or didn't you watch the movie?

Guess what, chuckles, when I wish for something, someone doesn't always purchase it for me. And that defies the "The Law of Attraction always works 100% of the time" garbage promoted by its authors.

Nibbol:

I have decreased the entropy in the system of house+outside sufficiently to live through the cold.

No, I don't think you have. The overall entropy of the system has still gone up, because work was done (by your furnace) to create heat. The entropy outside may be the same, but the entropy inside has gone up, and that means that the entropy of the system which includes outside and inside has also increased. It's not entropy that keeps you from surviving in the cold, it's biology.

Are humans conscious? Since we coined the term, we'd have to give it to ourselves. A rock? Probably not. Chimp? Seems to be. Dog? Rat? Ant? Somewhere along the evolutionary ladder you would agree (I would hope) that consciousness exists. As long as you built your robot to equivalent specs then, sure, conscious robot.
Yes, but how do we define it? In concrete terms, what is consciousness? What does the continuum measure? Is it problem-solving ability? Self-awareness? What?

Skeptico to “What-The” - Your claim, you back it up. Or go away.

“What-The” replies – “Goodbye”.

I’ll take that as your admission you can’t back up any of your claims. It’s clear you didn’t come here to “get some usefull (sic) input” as you claim. I’m tired of your childish language, swearing and insults. Cool it and post some evidence or go away. LAST WARNING. This blog is not your playground.

EVERYBODY ELSE – cool it also with the F-Bombs please and other juvenile insults. It’s getting tiresome.

"What they deny is your assertion (along with the assertion of the Secret) that thought has the power to directly influence or create reality."

OK...Do you own or possess anything that is man made? Do you live in a man made house? Do you ware clothes? Let me answer for you..NO, you cannot. Because those things cannot exist because as you say, thoughts cannot create reality! All of those things began as a thought and therefore, cannot exist...right?

"Guess what, chuckles, when I wish for something, someone doesn't always purchase it for me."

Who said someone "always" will? When the desire to want becomes strong enough, a way will be found. That desire MUST start with a thought!

"By your logic, if I think I am fat, I therefore become fat."

Right mate! By YOUR logic, the ONLY thing anyone says is what YOU say they have said!!

I DID NOT say "become"...I said "are".
......................

Is there anyone here that actually understands this power of thought and does not agree with it and can tell me why they do not agree? Because all I have seen so far is a sort of "I don't understand and therefore it is wrong" attitude.

"1. You can do physical things to the brain which change "consciousness." One such thing is to severely damage the brain in certain areas, which will remove consciousness. Thus, consciousness must somehow be connected to the physical brain."

Yes, definitely consciousness relies on the brain. Consciousness seems to be an emergent property which requires a fully-functional brain. But as soon as that consciousness emerges, does it control and direct the brain? Yes, this is philosophical, which is just another way of saying no one knows. But I want to know now damn it! If consciousness does direct the brain independent of the biological processes, then that begins to show that the mind can influence physical reality! And then I can start to believe in the Secret!

At the rate our knowledge is expanding, I sometimes wish I was born 50 years later. *sigh*

And about "wishing" for what you want... the movie doesn't really say it's that easy. They say that getting what you want is a act of pure will. If you want a million dollars and wish for it, but part of you doesn't really believe it can happen, then their premise is that it won't happen. They use examples of medical anomolies where people who have no chance of recovery recover. They say it was an act of pure will... the unwavering belief that you will walk again after being permanently paralyzed can make it so after time. Just "wishing" for it doesn't make it so... you have to actually want it and believe you'll get it.

(my last paragraph doesn't mean I believe in the Secret, it's just to say that the movie says it's really not as easy as wishing for it and it happens right away)

The people in the movie actually believe in the Secret. I'm wondering if they used the Secret, and just happened to get what they wanted by chance, or if their will actually helped to determine that success. Did the unwavering belief that this would happen cause it? Or was it just that they got lucky.

They're definitely trying to explain something, if it actually exists, that they don't understand. I'm not above alternative explanations... you may not be influencing the universe, but you may be influencing those around you by pure will (turned into action).

EVERYBODY ELSE – cool it also with the F-Bombs please and other juvenile insults. It’s getting tiresome.

Sorry, Skep, I'll watch my mouth from now on.

That being said:

What-The?,

You obviously miss the point of not only "The Secret" but the original post and just about every comment. The makers of "The Secret" say, essentially, that when you think a thought, your mind-waves or wish-power or whatever will affect the cosmos, and without any actual physical work on your part, what you wish for will come to you, like the child and the bike. The kid didn't work for the bike. He wished for it and the universe granted that wish through the man who just happened to buy one for him.

What they do not say is that positive thinking can help you work hard enough to achieve success. They are making a metaphysical statement about the nature of the universe and how that universe gives you what you wish for simply because you wished for it.

All of those things began as a thought and therefore, cannot exist...right?

No. Not. At. All. You are very, very wrong. What everyone here is saying is that thoughts do not directly influence the cosmos and result in magical gifts from the universe. Your assertion, which I take to be both "If I think I am X, then, in my mind, I really am X" as well as "If I think of doing Y, then I do Y, Y was created by a thought" are neither (a)what "The Secret" is saying and (b) what is being discussed here.

The first assertion is a matter of the subjectivity of perception vs. objective measurement; yes, the anorexic "is" fat in her mind, but when she can hardly walk and you can see her bones and the doctors say she has less than 1% body fat and is in danger of dying, then she is, objectively speaking, most certainly not fat.

The second assertion is a matter of semantics. You seem to want to claim that anything is "created by the power of thought" if it was started as a glimmer in the mind which led to work, i.e. I think about building a doghouse for Fido, and then I grab a hammer and nails and some 2x4's and build a doghouse, but because I thought about it first (unlike, I assume, a reflexive action) the doghouse was created by "the power of thought." You can define the terms however you like, but that's not how "The Secret" defines "the power of thought" (again, they define it as wishes literally creating reality without the intermediary of physical work on your part), nor is it how most people would say Fido's doghouse came about (they'd call it hard work and elbow grease).

Because all I have seen so far is a sort of "I don't understand and therefore it is wrong" attitude.

You have either misread or misjudged the debate; we do understand the nonsense "The Secret" is peddling, and we think it is wrong based on all relevant science and reason. You, on the other hand, don't even seem to understand what is being argued, nor do you seem to be making an effort to do so.

What-The?:
My "assertion" as you put it and what you say, proves that the power of thoughts DO have an affect on a person. You are not a skeptic...you are a hypocrite.

Anorexics think they are fat, but they are not. You state:

Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are fat. .... And so they are..because they "think" they are.

So you are wrong. They have a psychological disorder that makes them utterly convinced that they are fat, but they are not. They really do think, not "think", that they are fat. The power of thought as you put it makes them convinced they are fat. It does not make them fat. Your statement clearly claims that their thinking they are fat makes them fat. So you are wrong.

"She wasn't. So thinking something didn't make it so. This example supports me."

It did in HER MIND!! So NO, it does not support you...Because you say this power of thought does not exist!

But that is not what your original statement said, you have changed your position because your original one was clearly wrong. Even though everyone can clearly see what your original position was, you seem to think no-one will notice.

My position has always been that it only does something in her mind, that's the way anorexia and bulimia work.

Do you now claim that the secret only gives you what you want in your mind? Is this your position now?

Because those things cannot exist because as you say, thoughts cannot create reality!

Thoughts alone cannot create reality. That has been the skeptics position throughout this debate, so you have clearly either not read the debate thoroughly, or not understood it, or are ignoring it because it does not suit you.

Nibbol:
Is PEAR research valid and does it support your argument, or not?

If it is no longer valid, then what scientific theories or experiments support your argument? If it is still valid, how do you account for it being so, well, wrong, worthless and dishonest?

How do you define consciousness?
How do you believe your definition of consciousness fits in with the view that consciousness directly affects the physical universe?

About whether The Secret says “wish for what you want and you get it”, or anything similar…

These are direct quotes from the film:

“Thoughts become things.”

And the Law of Attraction:

“Always works every time”

Also, Joe Vitale answering the question Is Attraction a Law?, says:

LOA does work every time - no exceptions.

Anyone claiming this is the same as saying that all our actions start as thoughts, or that The Secret is not claiming that thoughts alone can literally change reality, is equivocating and playing semantic games. Play those games if you want, but you are not looking for an honest debate about this absurd film.

Proof it doesn't work!

I posted this waaaaay back:

Testing the "Law" of Attraction

Please, please, pretty please with sugar on top - I believe with all my heart that no more credulous asshats will comment on this post!

Obviously, this "law" doesn't work.

OK...Do you own or possess anything that is man made? Do you live in a man made house? Do you ware clothes? Let me answer for you..NO, you cannot. Because those things cannot exist because as you say, thoughts cannot create reality! All of those things began as a thought and therefore, cannot exist...right?
Again, you're equivocating, and furthermore, you seem to be skipping over the word "directly" in my statement. Thoughts can influence reality indirectly, through actions. But a thought itself only exists in the head of a person; it cannot influence objective, external reality without some mediating factor, such as "speech" or "deed."
Who said someone "always" will?
That would be Joe Vitale and "The Secret."
When the desire to want becomes strong enough, a way will be found. That desire MUST start with a thought!
"Start with a thought" is not "The Secret." "The Secret" is that it only consists of the thought. The point of the Secret is that when I wish for something through thought, that wish will always be granted, without the mediation of "asking grandpa for it" or "saving up my allowance." There's nothing new or woo in saying "if you want something, you can work hard to get it!" That's not a secret, and it definitely isn't "The Secret."
Right mate! By YOUR logic, the ONLY thing anyone says is what YOU say they have said!!
Um...right. Okay.
I DID NOT say "become"...I said "are".
Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are fat. Millions of people all around the World "think" that they are ugly...etc, etc. And so they are..because they "think" they are. Okay, "are" then. People "are" fat because they think they "are" fat. The word "because" denotes causation; you are saying that if I think I am fat, it causes me to be fat. You have still done absolutely nothing to show that this is true, and the very basic examples presented by me, Jimmy, and Akusai, show it to be quite false. Thought alone does not create reality.
Is there anyone here that actually understands this power of thought and does not agree with it and can tell me why they do not agree? Because all I have seen so far is a sort of "I don't understand and therefore it is wrong" attitude.
Here's what I understand, in bite-sized bits: 1. Thought alone cannot influence external, objective reality. The only way for a thought to influence that objective external reality is to pass through some mediating process, such as speech or action. So, if I think that I am fat, it does not cause me to be fat. If I think I am fat, then take the action of eating too much (and the inaction of not exercising), then my action may cause me to be fat. The thought itself is not directly connected to the real result. 2. The Secret denies that there is a mediating process, and suggests that thought leads directly to the real result. 3. The Secret is therefore false. 4. What happens within a person's mind is wholly subjective and unknowable except to that person. It has no effect on external, objective reality except through the speech and actions of that person. To say that thought causes a result in a person's mind is a different thing from saying that thought causes a result in the external world. The latter is verifiable, the former is not. 5. Your statements regarding "the power of thought" are not the same as the Secret and the Law of Attraction. You posit different degrees of desire, while the Law of Attraction is said to work every time, no matter what. You posit that thoughts create reality through a mediating factor (which is true); the Secret omits this factor (whic is not). You are trying to equivocate the two, when they are clearly not equivalent.

I guess those are big bites. Onward!

Kevin:

If consciousness does direct the brain independent of the biological processes, then that begins to show that the mind can influence physical reality! And then I can start to believe in the Secret!

Well, except, as you've just said, it's not independent of biological processes, because the existence of the "mind" is predicated on the existence of a fully-functioning brain. And The Secret isn't saying "the emergent properties of the brain can have some influence on other emergent properties of the brain," it's saying that "the emergent properties of the brain can influence the external universe directly." It's a leap to say "my mind can direct my thoughts to a degree, and my muscles, to a degree, therefore I will get caught in traffic if I worry about it." Even if this consciousness/mind/whatever entity somehow transcends biology, so far it has only been shown to affect local biology, and then only to direct the firing of various neural impulses. There needs to be considerably more evidence before one can say "this 'mind,' which is vaguely defined and cannot entirely be shown to exist as a separate entity, can directly affect external reality through an unknown mechanism, because it can direct internal reality through another unknown mechanism." There's too many holes to fill in, and you can't start talking about mechanisms until you define what the 'mind' is, and show that it exists as a specific entity. Which is why this all ends up being philosophical.

Just "wishing" for it doesn't make it so... you have to actually want it and believe you'll get it.
Except when you don't want something, and the universe gives it to you anyway, or when you want something, and the universe gives you less of it. There are quite a lot of caveats in the film, especially for a "law like gravity" that "works every time."

And this seems to fly in the face of the Joe Vitale claims, where the Law of Attraction brings things to you even if you're not actively thinking about them. If you worry about being late, you'll attract a traffic jam, and that sort of thing. The way it's presented is that it works all the time, whether or not you believe in it (though it does suggest that belief is necessary to direct it in the way you want). Vitale went so far as to say "People are 'attracting' evidence to support their beliefs, not noticing that the other side has "attracted" evidence to support their opposing beliefs. Pretty cool to see," when discussing how the skeptics, who don't believe in the LoA, are still affected by it.

They're definitely trying to explain something, if it actually exists, that they don't understand.
I think what they're doing is trying to rationalize luck and those "this happens every time!" moments into some kind of vaguely coherent philosophy. They take "the power of positive thinking" as literally as they take "that's always how it goes," which requires quite a lot of selection bias.

And yeah, when you have a bad attitude, things look worse. When you have a positive attitude, you tend to find the bright side of things. That old movie cliché of getting splashed by a car driving through a mud puddle might ruin your day if you're already grumpy or somewhat pessimistic for whatever reason, while you might just laugh it off on a better day. The problem is that they're trying to create causation somewhere, and they're trying to conflate personal perception of reality with objective reality.

For example, if one reads of the Dead Sea Scrolls, one will find that there is a script (or book) amongst the Scrolls that talks about "the secret"...The Law of Attraction! This book was written over 2000 years ago. The name of this book is raz nihyah or something like that spelling. There are two books in the Scrolls that fit your description: The Book of Secrets and The Secret of the Way Things Are.
Neither of them, however, says anything about the "Law of Attraction", or getting something by thinking about it, or any of the other stuff that The Secret peddles.
Maybe that's why the video didn't actually quote from either of them?

They just discussed The Secret on "The View", and took it down pretty well. Pretty humorous too. Good job (crazy) ladies!

give it up wizard, mora, the universe doesnt care about your ego based desires. The only thing connected to your beliefs are your physical response to them and the people who percieve them.

The only way that kid got the bike was through his dad perceiving the contentment it would bring his son. His son being content makes him content, so he purchases the bike.

We do control our reality to some degree. It depends how you define "control" and "reality". There is a strong correlation between belief and performance.

I could have social anxiety and fear the judgements of others due to my low self esteem(how i perceive myself), Thats my reality.... Then realise the importance of self belief/confidence and being more secure apply it and operate with much less anxiety, and that becomming my reality(a more contenting one).

I read on skeptico's review of "what the bleep" he couldn't believe someone could be liberated of anxiety through belief alone. There are hords of ppl who have come through the horrendus withdrawal of anti-anxiety meds and come out with a better perspective and operate with much less anxiety. I know from personal experience.

Belief affects how you feel and how others respond but has zero effect on material objects.

I hate you... all of you!!! Damn you to hell!

I'm starting to find that we can't even control our own brains. I thought that it'd be a good start to showing that the mind can manipulate reality if this abstract notion of consciousness, which doesn't physically reside in the brain (but emerges from it), can be the CAUSE of your actions. For example, if you want to raise your arm, it happens in this order:

1. Out of nowhere, with no physical cause (ie. no brain activity), YOU decide to raise your arm.
2. Neurons fire
3. Your arm raises

This would show that there is no physical cause which initiated your neurons to fire. No physical explanation or cause that preceded that physical effect of your neurons firing. It would be a mental cause, physical effect. The mind would have some power over reality. Consciousness may depend on your brain for existence, but it emerges to be something more than the sum of its parts and can actually make decisions independent of the brain.

But this guy named Libet did some experimenting and found this:

1. brain activity about 300 milliseconds before step 2.
2. YOU decide to raise your arm.
3. neurons fire
4. your arm raises.

We're programmed. Your free will isn't even free will... it's not you who decides to raise your arm, it's your brain's programming that decides what do to, and then instructs you to think about it and do it.

There's still some philosophical debate over this, and some questions on the validity of his experiment. But I'm depressed now.

You bastards!

We're programmed. Your free will isn't even free will... it's not you who decides to raise your arm, it's your brain's programming that decides what do to, and then instructs you to think about it and do it.
Well, that's only if you define "you" and "your brain" as separate entities. We are each of us the sum of our parts and their emergent properties, brain included (perhaps brain especially). I decide to type these words with my fingers; it's just that "I" am, to some degree, a construct of neuons and impulses in my brain.

And unless you buy wholeheartedly into something like the Dawkins gene-centric view of life, I think there's such a thing as "free will" in all this. It's just that will is, similarly, an emergent property of biological structures and subjective experiences.

Problem with defining "you" as a non-physical object: Same problem as "god in the gaps": It's only delaying the inevitable. Even if there was a separate non-physical soul, it wouldn't change any of the difficulties with free will: We'd begin work on ethereal mechanics or something and the whole thing would start over again, with them claiming that "you" aren't your spiritual energy complex or something, and they'd come up with another term.

What's worse, is that it's a shallow attempt to create some magic hole that they claim can't be filled. Just live with the mystery. Stop questioning it. Nothing to see here. No new knowledge to be gained.

"There are two books in the Scrolls that fit your description: The Book of Secrets and The Secret of the Way Things Are.
Neither of them, however, says anything about the "Law of Attraction", or getting something by thinking about it, or any of the other stuff that The Secret peddles.
Maybe that's why the video didn't actually quote from either of them?"

Thanks for that, very interesting. I am not sure of how reputable these sites are, but very interesting.

Your second link is the book I was talking about. I note that this site also talks about the "law of attraction". I have only read the first two paragraphs so far but I am going back to read the rest. I took particular note that not only are they talking about this so called 'law of attraction' but in the second paragraph they actually call it "The Secret"!!

Another interesting thing about all this is what the "law of attraction" was called 2000 to 3000 years ago..."god". It was the Romans that changed the meaning. The Scrolls were hidden in the caves because of the invading Romans, so the words used in the scrolls have pre Roman meaning.

Another interesting thing about all this is what the "law of attraction" was called 2000 to 3000 years ago..."god". It was the Romans that changed the meaning. The Scrolls were hidden in the caves because of the invading Romans, so the words used in the scrolls have pre Roman meaning.
Bull**** by any other name...

What-The?:

So, no more talk about fat or ugly people?

How about digging out some links for all the scientific FACTS you asserted and have been asked about and haven't come remotely close to proving?

How do you think the secret or law of attraction explains rape attacks, or any other form of crime?

How about the AIDs infection of new born children who are not even aware of AIDs?

Is it the fault of the mother that children are born with AIDs?

Since you asserted it's a scientific FACT that things that are unlocked appeal less to criminals ('It is a scientific FACT (psycology) that if something is left open it is safer.) do you lock your home at night or when you go on holiday?

Do you believe that banks should leave their vaults unlocked?

Do you believe that people who own guns should leave them unlocked?

Do you believe it would be safer for me to not worry about protecting my children, and just leave them as unprotected as possible? How does the secret view this?

Do you believe that we should disband all police forces, since that is such a large number of people whose thought focuses so heavily on crime being committed?

Do police forces actually cause crime because of the focus of their thoughts?

Did the anti-Iraq war protesters prevent the discovery of WMDs in Iraq?

Are climatologists and the environmental movement causing global warming by focusing so heavily on it?

As more people become aware of global warming and worry about it, does that mean it will get worse not better?

During the conflict in Sierra Leone the rebels would often sever an arm of victims when they attacked villages, was this the fault of the villagers worrying about having their arm severed?

That should keep you busy for a while at least.

Sorry, my wife gave me some more questions to ask:

Has the bogeyman ever been shown to exist, and has he taken any children?

If not, why not? Are children's thoughts taken into account by the secret?

With so many people focused on sightings of the Loch Ness monster, how come no-one has really been able to get any good irrefutable evidence of it's existence?

This one is mine:

Does Elvis still live? A lot of people "think" so after all.

Oh, oh, one more.

When a serial killer "thinks" it's God that told him to do it, is it?

One more:

Did Luke actually want Darth Vader to be his father?

"Sorry, my wife gave me some more questions to ask:"

No need to apologise, I forgive you.

This winter, I had to do a little preparation for defrosting my car in the morning: At my dad's recommendation, I'd have it defrosting on its own for a while with the keys in the ignition. Did it about 5 or 6 times, worrying about the car as I did other morning preparations.

Yet it didn't get stolen. I've always worried about my car, always locking it whenever I ventured more than arm's reach from it and even had a few heebie-jeebies moments when a few neurons in the back of my head just "knew" I was going to be greeted by an empty parking space.

And yet I've never had anything happen to my car when I was away, aside from one incident involving surprisingly little egg.

Negative Attracts Negative as I see here so the Law Of Attraction does really work! Comment of that please. . .

Perhaps you'd like to precisely define "negative" for one thing.

Since it seems that we're no longer talking about fat and ugly people, as it got us nowhere at all, I would like to propose a situation that seems to me fatal to both What-The?'s understanding of The Secret ("If someone "thinks" they are fat, then they are fat...in their MINDS!) and The Secret proper.

Let's talk about homosexuals.

Specifically, homosexuals who have, for whatever reason (usually religious) decided to try as hard as possible to be straight. Imagine a man who is, against his conscious desire and the will of his god, attracted to other men. He doesn't want to be gay, so he fights and fights and fights and convinces himself that he's straight. He marries a lady, has a kid or two, and, thanks to years of self-flagellation, truly believes at this point that he's "fixed his problem" and is straight.

But this isn't true. Not in his head or in the real world. He might truly believe that he's straight now, but he still finds himself attracted to men. He believes himself to be straight, but even in his own mind he isn't. In objective reality, he's merely closeted, sublimating his urges and denying what he really wants but can't admit to himself.

How will his "power of thought" change the fact that he is attracted to men? It can't change his mind or the reality of the situation. He thinks he is straight, but he is not. Not in his head, and not in the real world. What's the deal?

What-The?, Where is there any reference in either of these two text to the Law of Attraction? I failed to find any. Obviously, though, you wanted to find it, so it appeared in the text - the Law of Attraction in action!
You clearly haven't read through these texts, have you? Especially the second one:
"Honor your father by your poverty";
" Do not crave anything except your inheritance, and do not be consumed by it";
"show your poverty to all who seek pleasure";
"Your poverty is your reward in the remembrance of time";
"[Impo]se discipline on your [lips], and on your tongue double-doors. [...] Meditate on righteous words. [...] to those who seek [...] Always with your mouth praise [God ... ] your trembling [...] Give joy to His name [...] in the general assembly [...]";
"at night meditate on the secret of why things are and investigate it at all times, and then you will know truth and evil, wisdom and falsehood .. Consider the wicked in al1 their ways, with all their punishments throughout the world eras and the eternal punishment and then you will know the difference between good [and evil] deeds, for the God of knowledge is the confidant of Truth, and in the secret of the way things are He has made plain its basis"
Notice the constant emphasis on poverty and the need to listen to and obey God. That is what this manuscript is about; it's religious teaching, a teacher writing to his students. Nothing at all to do with The Secret. (The only reference to money is an injunction to repay loans quickly!)
Honestly, the fact that these manuscripts are referenced in The Secret makes the thinking and motives of the people behind it very plain.
"Oh looky, there's a couple of Dead Sea Scrolls manuscripts with 'The Secret' in the titles! No, I haven't read them, but the dumbasses who will buy into this won't have read them either. And the Dead Sea Scrolls are supposed to be full of ancient wisdom, right? So we'll just say that there's this dead Sea Scroll that's about the Law of Attraction - the rubes won't know the difference!"

Negative Attracts Negative as I see here so the Law Of Attraction does really work! Comment of that please. . .
Yes, by responding to the Law of Attraction with a negative answer, we seem to be attracting people with negative IQs.

I still have yet to see the Secret's refutation of the work of Dr. Abdul.

I mentioned this on another thread, but as far as "negative attracting negative": for a while I was pretty depressed and grumpy (mostly because I was in grad school, as if that wasn't enough, in a state with crappy weather). I was in a negative mood for a few years! But nothing bad happened to me - I still got the fellowships I applied for, my car never got stolen, etc. Life went on as normally. In fact, my sister kept telling me how lucky I was. Yes, you create your own mood, to a certain extent, but you do not create outside reality.
madaha

"Notice the constant emphasis on poverty and the need to listen to and obey God. That is what this manuscript is about; it's religious teaching, a teacher writing to his students."

These Scrolls were not writen today, they do not have todays word meaning. They were written more than 2000 years ago.

2000 years ago, the word god, as used by the people that wrote these Scrolls, was referring to the law of attraction. In fact, the actual word "law" is used a number times.

"poverty" is also a word that has changed in meaning. Today, it mostly means poor or lacking. Although, not used or rarely used anymore, it also means 'political power' or ability to influence people. This diss-used meaning is much closer to the original meaning of the word...and these Scrolls were written more than 2000 years ago!

You are 100% correct on one point though...One of us is only seeing what we want to see!

What-The?
No need to apologise, I forgive you.

My we are full of ourselves aren't we? Well, that's nice and all but I was apologising to Skeptico for repeated posts. I don't like doing it and some bloggers don't like it either. Thanks all the same though.

Of course, your complete failure to even attempt to answer those questions is noted and was not in the least a surprise. You didn't answer because you can't and everyone who reads the thread will know this. Thank you.

These Scrolls were not writen today, they do not have todays word meaning. They were written more than 2000 years ago.

How very convenient for you. Obviously you'll now be able to provide a source for this information, one that isn't from the secret? Note I am not saying that words don't change their meaning (even though you will actually try and attack me for saying that), I want you to prove that the words have changed in the way you cite.

2000 years ago, the word god, as used by the people that wrote these Scrolls, was referring to the law of attraction.

Prove it.

In fact, the actual word "law" is used a number times.

Wow, ground breaking. Stop the press. Religious writings contain the word 'law'. Now hopefully you don't mean the English word 'law', so what is the word for law in the language the dead sea scrolls were written in? Please cite your source for showing this word translates into the English word law, but that it meant god when the scrolls were written.

The source must be independent of the secret, or independently verifiable.

"poverty" is also a word that has changed in meaning. Today, it mostly means poor or lacking. Although, not used or rarely used anymore, it also means 'political power' or ability to influence people. This diss-used meaning is much closer to the original meaning of the word...and these Scrolls were written more than 2000 years ago!

Interesting that I couldn't find the meaning of the word as you use it in the 7 sources cited by dictionary.com.

What is your evidence for this assertion? Please cite your source. Where did you find this etymology of the word 'poverty'? Especially since the etymology of the word I have found says it first appears in c1175, from the Old French poverte, via the Latin word pauperitas and originally referred to either unproductive farmland or female livestock which didn't breed very well.

(sources: Wikipedia, article on child poverty, and The Online Etymology Dictionary).

Oops. That must be very embarrasing for you. Maybe you didn't think about poverty meaning what you wanted it to hard enough.

So, lets look up the etymology of 'law' shall we? Ok, nothing about it meaning god on dictionary.com (22 sources cited). How about the etymology dictionary? Nope, nothing about god there for this Germanic word passed down through Norse to English.

How about god? Nothing from the etymology dictionary about the law of attraction, again Germanic with origins/links in Proto-Indo-European, Greek and Classical Latin. How about dictionary.com and it's 10 sources? Nope.

Note I do not rule out the remote possibility you are right. You may very well be in this remote instance of word etymology and meaning. However, you have been wrong on everything else, and you fail to cite any sources, so I am not holding out much hope.

Of course, what you say means nothing because several words are used in place of god in religious writings, like 'The Word' or 'The Light' or 'The Way', and even 'The Law'.

Enquiring minds want to know, I am extremely interested in the etymology of words after my two year study of the English Language.

Why don't you answer the questions? If you're right, it shouldn't take long surely. You even have the Dead Sea Scrolls to help you.

2000 years ago, the word god, as used by the people that wrote these Scrolls, was referring to the law of attraction. In fact, the actual word "law" is used a number times.
That sounds like ad hocking to me. I can say first, with total certainty, that the Dead Sea Scrolls do not use the word "god," because they were written in a different language, specifically one of a variant of Hebrew dialects. There are other Hebrew texts from the same time, and many examples of Hebrew writing through the ages, which can be used for comparison. I have a feeling that the translators, working with all of those texts, keep that sort of thing in mind.

You say "the people who wrote the scrolls," as if they're the only ones who used the word that is translated as god to mean "law" and specifically "law of attraction." Unfortunately for you, most words do have specific meanings, which are mostly constant across dialects. For a word like 'god' or 'law' or 'Eloi' or 'Yahweh,' which is going to be very important to the sort of people writing in Hebrew, we're going to have lots of points for comparison, and it's going to be very unlikely that one small group will use such an important word differently from all the other groups.

And I can interpret just about anything in light of modern knowledge. Especially when I don't have anything to stop me from just making stuff up. I can say that when Shakespeare wrote "all the world's a stage," 'stage' didn't mean what it does now. In fact, it meant "bar" as in "salad bar," and thus that Shakespeare was the first vegan (or buffet-goer, or something), but I have to back it up with proof. An easy way to refute that would be to go back to other people using the word "stage" back then, and see if any of them talked about salad bars.

So, in other words, show us some proof.

it also means 'political power' or ability to influence people. This diss-used meaning is much closer to the original meaning of the word...and these Scrolls were written more than 2000 years ago!
Okay, I'll bite. Off to check the Oxford English Dictionary...and the earliest usage in English (1225) means "The condition of having little or no wealth or few material possessions; indigence, destitution." Every subsequent usage, for the last eight hundred years, has been consistent with that. And the OED, the definitive source for meaning in the English language, doesn't list any earlier texts which use the word poverty, so even if it did have a different meaning before that (unlikely, since England had only really existed for a hundred and sixty years), there is no surviving text to even suggest such a meaning.

So, your claim that "poverty" meant something else 2000 years ago is bunk. But what about Hebrew? What if the Hebrew word we translate as "poverty" had a different meaning 2000 years ago?

Well, this is the Dead Sea Scrolls. They were discovered between 1947 and 1956. Which means they have been translated in light of the modern word "poverty." Which means that, if the Hebrew word translated as something other than what "poverty" means today, they wouldn't use "poverty" when translating it to English, they'd use a word that means what the Hebrew word means. I'll bet if the word "sad" shows up in the Dead Sea Scroll English translations, it means "unhappy," and not the earlier English meaning, "satisfied." If there was a Hebrew word which meant "satisfied," it would be translated with the modern English equivalent, not some archaic English word.

You are 100% correct on one point though...One of us is only seeing what we want to see!
Yep, but it's not us. Because I imagine we all want to see intelligent people who consider the facts, not creduloids who consider propaganda, fallacy, and outright fiction.

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