Bob Bigelow on Essay Competition

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An essay competition was recently held where financial prizes were given to the top writers. 
Jeffrey Mishlove won first prize, and $500000.

Oh my God, I hate all this.   Surprise
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(2021-11-16, 11:38 AM)Stan Woolley Wrote: An essay competition was recently held where financial prizes were given to the top writers. 
Jeffrey Mishlove won first prize, and $500000.

What a list of writers and thinkers.

https://www.bigelowinstitute.org/News4.php

This seems like a ground swell of support, and I personally will be following what is going on with this contest.
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Great idea, wrongly executed IMHO. I'm not going to comment (much) on those that were awarded massive prize money, but some deserve it, especially Van Lommel who conducted the first longitudinal prospective study into NDE's, although, he doesn't actually need it now, I must add. He would have benefited from this handsomely in and around (before) 1988 when his study commenced. 

My point is that by giving awards based on essay composition, Parnia has received only $20,000 less than one twentieth of Jeffrey Mishlove. And yet Parnia is the only active researcher who could produce evidence that could potentially alter the paradigm. What he could have done with $500,000? More centers, more staff, more equipment ..the list is endless. What can Mishlove do with it ? As nice a guy as he is, what he says won't change anything.

Missed opportunity for me but the idea was on the right track.
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(2021-11-17, 04:59 PM)tim Wrote: Missed opportunity for me but the idea was on the right track.


Maybe so, but Bigelow’s use of his wealth might encourage other wealthy people to use their money in some similar, more useful fashion. I don’t think Mishlove will use it to buy a Roller.  Smile

I’m looking forward to reading them, they may surprise us?
Oh my God, I hate all this.   Surprise
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The only one of the winning essays that I have been able to find so far is the top winner’s, by Jeffrey Mishlove. This is at https://www.nonlocalmind.org/wp-content/...titute.pdf . I think it is very good, but with two to me major deficiencies.

First, he somewhat shortchanges the empirical evidence of the veridicality of many NDEs as one of the biggest areas of well investigated evidence. He barely mentions this area.

For instance, it would have been good if he had referenced The Self Does Not Die by Rivas, Dirven and Smit, which exhaustively documents 125 or so independently investigated and confirmed veridical cases, often firsthand accounts of perceptions during NDEs that were later verified as accurate.

Of course NDEs taken alone do not provide conclusive evidence of life after death. But I think the NDE phenomenon is still a very important and powerful body of evidence.

I go along with Kelly, Greyson and Stevenson in their 2000 paper, “Can experiences near death furnish evidence of life after death?” (Omega, 40, 513-519), where they surveyed the NDE phenomenon and concluded that it constitutes strong evidence for survival of physical death. The accumulation since then of more and more investigated and verified veridical cases (as documented for instance in The Self Does Not Die) has only made this conclusion stronger in the intervening years. 

In their paper Kelly, Greyson and Stevenson enumerate the features of NDEs that make alternative materialistic explanations very difficult as:

“...enhanced mental processes at a time when physiological functioning is seriously impaired; the experience of being out of the body and viewing events going on around as from a position above; and the awareness of remote events not accessible to the person’s ordinary senses.”

Of course it is true that for the most part the veridical NDE evidence is technically not for a permanent afterlife existence but for the persistence of an enhanced consciousness when the body, in particular the brain, is in a moribund dysfunctional state. This is completely contrary to the assumptions of materialist scientism, implies the existence of some sort of soul or spirit, and shows that this at least for the time surviving consciousness includes paranormal perceptions. This all strongly implies an afterlife existence and supports the other main areas of evidence including reincarnation memories and mediumistic communications.

The other flaw in Mishlove's essay seems to me to be that he includes the very dubious field of Instrumental Transcommunication as a legitimate area of empirical evidence, despite the ample evidence that it is spurious, mainly subconsciously generated meanings derived from preconceived ideas and desires, produced in response to random noise. It's called pareidolia. Akin to the well known phenomenon of finding faces in clouds and wallpaper patterns. I don't think there have been much if any legitimate independent verifications of this material. Correct me if I am leaving some good evidence out. Anyway, this item reduces the value of the winning essay in my opinion, and places a little doubt on the quality of the judging panel.
(This post was last modified: 2021-11-17, 05:45 PM by nbtruthman.)
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(2021-11-17, 05:28 PM)nbtruthman Wrote: Anyway, this item reduces the value of the winning essay in my opinion, and places a little doubt on the quality of the judging panel.


Agreed, nbtruthman. Also the prize money is not calibrated correctly IMHO. Just so disappointed that Parnia got peanuts whilst Jeffrey got a fortune.
I see most of the names on the list are quite established thinkers. It's a pity, I'd hope with a contest like this something new, exciting and left-field would emerge from a relative unknown. 

Of course, if this were to be the case, giving the winner a cheque for half a million (I had to recount the zeros on first reading) would amount to an even more bizarre misallocation of capital than handing it to Dr. Mishlove. 

One solution could be to give the winner a certain amount of cash and then allow them to disperse the rest to the research projects of their choice.

At the end of the day, I can't help but feel the results come across as a little cliquey.

That said, and to be fair to Jeff, maybe he'll use the money to develop a new show that ends up raising awareness. After all, New Thinking Allowed is by far the best, moderately mainstream paranormal show out there.... and by a country mile. 

Otherwise, I wonder if I could ask him for a loan?
Formerly dpdownsouth. Let me dream if I want to.
(This post was last modified: 2021-11-19, 09:44 AM by woethekitty.)
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@Typoz  What happened to your post? I'm interested.
Formerly dpdownsouth. Let me dream if I want to.
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(2021-11-19, 09:44 AM)woethekitty Wrote: @Typoz  What happened to your post? I'm interested.

I’m interested = I’m nosy, wondering if there might be something juicy!   Smile Smile Smile

Only kidding, I was wondering the same.  Big Grin

But I just managed to control myself as I thought it’s probably nothing.  Halo
Oh my God, I hate all this.   Surprise
(This post was last modified: 2021-11-19, 09:56 AM by Stan Woolley.)
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