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Evidence Vs Desire
#1
I personally never cared too much about evidence in terms of choosing what I wanted to focus on in life. I decided instead that if I wanted something I'd just work for it until I had it. Regardless of how crazy it seemed or how little evidence currently existed for it. And as a result I've learned quite a lot.

Conversely I see a lot of people who refuse to even lift a finger towards a subject if there isn't pre existing evidence of its reality. I can't help but think that this is a very submissive and entitled way of going about things. Entitled because it often seems like people are waiting for reality to feed them evidence on a silver spoon before they put any effort of their own in. I think Typoz put it best by comparing it to someone saying "I won't get in the water until I learn how to swim!"

It's something I've at least seen a lot in the attitudes of pseudoskeptics when they demand evidence from a practitioner, as if somehow it's not real until they say it is. Even though their beliefs one way or another has zero impact on the abilities or lack thereof of the practitioner.

To me it seems irrational to allow reality to shape my beliefs about physics and my own capabilities. I always default to my own desires. If I can't do something my response is to vow to somehow find a way to make it work. As far as I'm concerned life is already pointless and unfair so I won't sit passively and allow myself to be rolled over by outside forces. That doesn't mean that my willpower alone will make a difference, although that is the goal, but it certainly acts as the fuel.

So I've wondered for a bit where everyone else stands on the Evidence-Desire debate? Do you think it's better to wait until you have evidence before moving forward or are you like me where you dive right into the deep end first and figure things out as you go, win or lose?
"Being polite is just lying with a smile"
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#2
Interesting questions, Mediochre. As I've aged, I've become more conservative in my behaviour and approach to life; more of a creature of habit. I don't (or rather, rarely) try new things, let alone new things for the effectiveness of which I have little evidence. The rare exceptions are at times when I go off the anti-psychotics which have been prescribed to me and enter an altered state of consciousness - but even in those scenarios my "try something 'weird' and see if it works" instinct is often muffled by my conservative nature. That said, I think your approach is laudable, and I certainly wouldn't criticise you for it. How do we gain evidence in the first place if we don't try new things? I just happen not to be one of the trail-blazers in this regard.
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#3
Personally I'd say that probably most things we think of as being valuable need to be worked for, unless we are very lucky. I don't see why that should be any different for psi-related matters. 

Some people seem to get experiences which offer them evidence or an insight, seemingly without the need to work for it however turning those experiences into something meaningful, putting them in the wider context or helping others with those experiences is going to require effort IMHO. 

The difficulty is that everyone has different motivations for entering the debate on this subject. Which approach we take - diving in, cautiously feeling our way or sitting back waiting for someone to prove it to us -  depends on our motivation. 

Perhaps simplistically, I think that if one has a genuine interest in a subject, why wouldn't we make an active attempt to learn? Unless we're convinced we already know the answer and I can't see how that could be realistic without having made a genuine effort to find out in the first place. Where did this 'knowledge' come from?

I think each approach has it pros and cons. Your 'immersive' approach to the subject is fine if one has the energy and can handle any knocks or problems. We're not all that energetic alas Smile, nor do meaningful experiences come easily to some of us - no matter how hard we try.

Having been a religious person in the past, and having been 'fooled' IMO, I am cautious about the subject of psi and need to keep reminding myself to maintain a balance between acceptance and testing what I am reading/hearing/learning. Also I tend to be of an analytical mindset these days. When I was a young man, everything was black and white. Now everything is a shade of grey (including my hair, what little is left). The upside is that when I make a decision it is informed and has been tested. The downside is that much of the fun and exhilaration of discovery can be lost. 

That's my angle FWIW.
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#4
Interesting idea, Mediochre.

I've noticed that the balance has shifted as I get older. I was less worried that I would discover I had been wasting my time when I was younger. Now, I tend to want some indication (it doesn't have to be much) that a particular path won't be fruitless before I start to pursue it. It doesn't stop me from occasionally exploring ideas which I am pretty sure are fruitless, though. 

I'm still at the point where I want to see a lot of dead ends. If my explorations aren't failing a good portion of the time, I'm not pushing myself enough. To give a more mundane example - I've been exploring a bunch of new ideas by dyeing sections of warps (the threads which are wound on a loom in preparation for weaving). In last set of these samples that I wove, at least half of the sections in the warp were failures, and I was happy about that.    

Linda
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#5
(10-16-2017, 04:55 AM)Mediochre Wrote: Conversely I see a lot of people who refuse to even lift a finger towards a subject if there isn't pre existing evidence of its reality. I can't help but think that this is a very submissive and entitled way of going about things. Entitled because it often seems like people are waiting for reality to feed them evidence on a silver spoon before they put any effort of their own in.

You've written some good stuff here, Mediochre, but I do have some issues about what you've written above? Not all people have the time and resources to do what you are talking about. I remember when Max_B and Bernardo (Kastrup) got into an argument, because Bernardo refused to see that he was quite lucky in his life to be where he is. I think it's obvious that I don't normally agree with Max (sorry, Max!), but I could see what he was saying and Bernardo dropped that line of conversation quickly.

When I was experimenting with lucid dreaming, pre-cognitive dreaming, and keeping a meticulous dream journal, I was lucky that I had the time to do that at that point. I'd love to do that now, but the pressures of work, family and children cut into that time. I do write down what I can, though, when I have precious time.

And I still think I'm in a better position than others, such as those living paycheck to paycheck. They are not stupid or lazy because they don't have the time to explore the options between religion and scientism (or scientific materialism). The interest is there (I personally believe based on anecdotal evidence), but the problem is finding the time to not only educate oneself, but to also take the time to practice meditation or lucid dreaming or keeping a dream journal and so on.

Quote:It's something I've at least seen a lot in the attitudes of pseudoskeptics when they demand evidence from a practitioner, as if somehow it's not real until they say it is. Even though their beliefs one way or another has zero impact on the abilities or lack thereof of the practitioner.

I agree with you that most pseudo-skeptics do not even attempt to look for evidence themselves through the aforementioned methods, even though a lot of them do have the time and resources! They are "above" that kind of "woo"! Smile
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#6
(10-17-2017, 07:37 AM)Doppelgänger Wrote: You've written some good stuff here, Mediochre, but I do have some issues about what you've written above? Not all people have the time and resources to do what you are talking about. I remember when Max_B and Bernardo (Kastrup) got into an argument, because Bernardo refused to see that he was quite lucky in his life to be where he is. I think it's obvious that I don't normally agree with Max (sorry, Max!), but I could see what he was saying and Bernardo dropped that line of conversation quickly.

When I was experimenting with lucid dreaming, pre-cognitive dreaming, and keeping a meticulous dream journal, I was lucky that I had the time to do that at that point. I'd love to do that now, but the pressures of work, family and children cut into that time. I do write down what I can, though, when I have precious time.

And I still think I'm in a better position than others, such as those living paycheck to paycheck. They are not stupid or lazy because they don't have the time to explore the options between religion and scientism (or scientific materialism). The interest is there (I personally believe based on anecdotal evidence), but the problem is finding the time to not only educate oneself, but to also take the time to practice meditation or lucid dreaming or keeping a dream journal and so on.


I agree with you that most pseudo-skeptics do not even attempt to look for evidence themselves through the aforementioned methods, even though a lot of them do have the time and resources! They are "above" that kind of "woo"! Smile

Sorry, I realized in hindsight that I didn't elaborate my point correctly. I'm not talking specifically about psi I'm talking about skills in general. and I'm also moreso referring to people who tell other people not to bother trying things because  they think it's crazy, unrealistic, or impossible. Also the types people that myself and Dreamsoap regularly encounter who are interested in some of the more normal non psi stuff we are but constantly tell themselves and everyone else how they'll never be able to do it and it's too hard. Even though we'll try and help them they'll just kick up a fuss about it and then complain that other people are more skilled/more successful than they are. These are people who tend to also be living from paycheck to paycheck but after awhile you can tell it's their own fault for not seeking more out of life. I've become completely unsympathetic to many of these cases because so many of them really do present themselves as lazy, entitled welps that expect the government or whoever to make their lives better for them and blame everyone and everything else for their own choices. Dreamsoap and I aren't anywhere near wealthy either and I'm physically disabled on top of that. We do the best we can to make things work and although it's slow we make steady improvement in our lives. It's funny to look at where some of these professional victims are now with their respective fieldd especially when they're the same as ours. It's not uncommon to see that they've made no improvement and gone nowhere whereas we've jumped leaps and bounds. It's not just because they're living paycheck to paycheck, it's because they're lazy.

It's ironic because its something I've heard a lot from people who grew up in stereotypical run down black communities in america who then work hard become successful, and move away. They often turn around and say that the problem with their communitiy is them, not the government or the white man, just them acting like victims all the time. I've heard the same thing from rich people in general. On reddit there's an old thread somewere about AskrRchPeople or something. Someone asked if they still hang out with their old friends they had before they made all their money. The answer is generally no because the mindset of their friends was just incompatible with theirs. Their old friends were basically like the people I described, professional victims with no ambition and it was depressing hanging around them especially since they'd always ask for money. So they only hung out with other rich people instead. Naturally some of their old friends thought they were stuck up and etc because of it but really it was them who were stuck up.

It's one thing to recognize your own limitations but it's another to complain that life is unfair, blame it on everyone else, do nothing about it, and then be surprised that nothing changes. All the while telling other people who are working hard to get out of their own situation to not try because it's impossible and they're just stupid crazy narcissists for daring to believe they're worth more than what they had. And it's also quite another to tell rich/skilled/successful people they're bad for not handing over their hard earned time and resources to someone else just because that person is rich/etc and others have less than them. As if they're entitled to the persons wealth merely because they exist.

That is why I say it seems both submissive and entitled.
"Being polite is just lying with a smile"
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