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Storm
SFN Regular

USA
708 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:20:52  Show Profile  Visit Storm's Homepage Send Storm a Private Message
I read a very interesting story in Tony Cornells book, Investigating the Paranormal. Tony had gone on an investigation at a Seance. While the medium could not get some information correct she began to speew out personal information about a crisis that Tony was going through at the time. The medium did not know anything about Tony and his problems. He concluded thaat it could not have been a ghost or spirit but that she must have copletely read his mind????
So what do you skeptic sya to that?
[Moved to the General Skepticism folder - Dave W.]

Storm

filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:26:56   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message
Sounds like cold reading to me. Very common in mentalist, stage proformances. John Edward is a master of the technique. Gimmie a few minutes, and I'll come up with some references.

On edit, here we go, From the Skeptic's Dictionary:

quote:
cold reading
"In the course of a successful reading, the psychic may provide most of the words, but it is the client that provides most of the meaning and all of the significance." --Ian Rowland (2000: 60)

Cold reading refers to a set of techniques used by professional manipulators to get a subject to behave in a certain way or to think that the cold reader has some sort of special ability that allows him to "mysteriously" know things about the subject. Cold reading goes beyond the usual tools of manipulation: suggestion and flattery. In cold reading, salespersons, hypnotists, advertising pros, faith healers, con men, and some therapists bank upon their subject's inclination to find more meaning in a situation than there actually is. The desire to make sense out of our experience has led us to many wonderful discoveries, but it has also led some of us to many follies. The manipulator knows that his mark will be inclined to try to make sense out of whatever he is told, no matter how farfetched or improbable. He knows, too, that people are generally self-centered, that we tend to have unrealistic views of ourselves and that we will generally accept claims about us that reflect not how we are or even how we really think we are but how we wish we were or think we should be. He also knows that for every several claims he makes about you which you reject as being inaccurate, he will make one that meets with your approval; and he knows that you will remember the hits he makes and forget the misses.

http://skepdic.com/coldread.html


"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

Edited by - filthy on 11/30/2004 07:30:30
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Cuneiformist
The Imperfectionist

USA
4954 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:35:57   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Cuneiformist a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Storm

I read a very interesting story in Tony Cornells book, Investigating the Paranormal. Tony had gone on an investigation at a Seance. While the medium could not get some information correct she began to speew out personal information about a crisis that Tony was going through at the time. The medium did not know anything about Tony and his problems. He concluded thaat it could not have been a ghost or spirit but that she must have copletely read his min


Storm, this is akin to me posting:

quote:
I read a book where a guy had a broken hand. But the guy was a freelance artist and couldnt work (and earn money) with his hand in a cast. Anxious for the bones to heal in a hurry, he tried various remedies. At one point, he put his hand next to a really powerful magnet. One day later, his bones healed. What do you think of that???


Now of course, I just made that up off the top of my head. And while I'm sure that you actually did read Tony Cornell's story about a medium reading his mind or whatever, there's no way for anyone here on an internet forum to comment in any significant way on this-- there's no way I, sitting in my apartment in Baltimore on a Tuesday morning, can check if a guy named Tony Cornell accurately reported on his supposed encounter with a woman who claimed she could read minds.

Since I've never encountered anyone who could read minds-- wheather they claimed they could or not-- I'm inclinded to say that Mr Cornell is BSing his readers. But since I know nothing about the specifics beyond what you've written, it's pointless to speculate further.
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Starman
SFN Regular

Sweden
1613 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:45:58   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Starman a Private Message
This, and many stories like it, is an anecdote.
It is very hard to evaluate such a story and there are a lot of possible explanations that can account for a medium getting correct information.
quote:
While the medium could not get some information correct she began to speew out personal information about a crisis that Tony was going through at the time
Which information was correct and which was incorrect?
Do you have a transcript of the Seance?
Most mediums are good at probing their subject.
Edit: Darn it! I'm late with the links today.
Edited by - Starman on 11/30/2004 07:47:12
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Storm
SFN Regular

USA
708 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:48:39   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Storm's Homepage Send Storm a Private Message
I agree with cold reading to a point. If we think that all who read minds only rely on cold reading then we give into the frauds of Spiritualism.
Has there not been a time where you were thinking to say something and then all of a sudden someonelse says what you were thinking? Then you would say Hey I was just thinking that? I find this happens with people close to me. Like My husband, children, friends,etc. Then I have to think that because we are so close we can kind of expect what one is going to say? But it happens with strangers as well. Am I cold Reading? What makes you think that John Edward is a cold reader? Don't let Spiritualism be your only basis for the truth
Energy does not die it merely gets dispersed. Einstein
We are balls of energy
Just because we have not discovered it does not mean it does not exist.
The possibilities are endless

Storm
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:57:01   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message
Just ran a google on Mr. Cornell:

quote:

"Do You Believe In Ghosts?"
Do you believe in ghosts? There has always been a fascination pertaining to unexplained phenomenon. Individuals investigating these occurrences generally come from two schools of thought, the passionate defenders or the sceptics.

Tony Cornell is a psychical researcher who has devoted 55 years to the study and investigation of the paranormal and as he states in his book he remains sceptical, however, in certain instances he does admit that there has been the existence of phenomena that defied explanation.

With his book INVESTIGATING THE PARANORMAL, Cornell tries to make sense of some of the accounts of apparitions, poltergeists and mediums. Apparently, most of the findings mentioned in this exposition have never been published before.

http://thebestreviews.com/review8886

Apparently, he's pretty prolific writer on the subject. I still think he got hooked by a good cold-reader. A lot of otherwise sensible people do and apparently, as he was looking for it, he was almost predisposed to getting caught.

There is also the the unpleasant thought that finding a psychic or two might sell books, and yes, I have a nasty, suspitious mind.


"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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Starman
SFN Regular

Sweden
1613 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  07:58:28   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Starman a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Storm

...the frauds of Spiritualism.
This again.
Do you have a point with this?
quote:

Has there not been a time where you were thinking to say something and then all of a sudden someonelse says what you were thinking? Then you would say Hey I was just thinking that? I find this happens with people close to me. Like My husband, children, friends,etc. Then I have to think that because we are so close we can kind of expect what one is going to say? But it happens with strangers as well.

Your brain is wired to look for patterns and correlations.

How often do people says something completely different? Do you notice?
If you are together with someone you both see and hear similar things that might inspire similar thoughts a few moments later.


"Any religion that makes a form of torture into an icon that they worship seems to me a pretty sick sort of religion quite honestly"
-- Terry Jones
Edited by - Starman on 11/30/2004 07:59:06
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Storm
SFN Regular

USA
708 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:19:09   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Storm's Homepage Send Storm a Private Message
Well my friends if you want more info on it read the book and the rest of the story, stories and then you decide.
So if I can believe what Tony Cornell has written about the experience and I hold it as proof
What leads you to believe that it is not?
What proof of the Paranormal would you believe?
Maybe if Carl Sagan said so...
Maybe if Steven Hawkins sais So...
Starman if you are a Scientist your brain then is also wired for pattern and correlation...
So why is it then Starman that when together with someone you see and hear similiar things? What is the force between ones who are together that create these visions these auditory sounds?
God...
Science..
Paranormal...
Carnal Lust...
Maybe they are all the same...
Carl Jung
and why can it not go beyond just those who are close...
Maybe someone like a medium...
Do the research on Spiritualism and you should understand what I mean
Not everyone just makes things up off the top of there heads for no reason...
Many people have very true and real experiences
Don't be a True Believer

Storm
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:21:02   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Storm

I agree with cold reading to a point. If we think that all who read minds only rely on cold reading then we give into the frauds of Spiritualism.
Has there not been a time where you were thinking to say something and then all of a sudden someonelse says what you were thinking? Then you would say Hey I was just thinking that? I find this happens with people close to me. Like My husband, children, friends,etc. Then I have to think that because we are so close we can kind of expect what one is going to say? But it happens with strangers as well. Am I cold Reading? What makes you think that John Edward is a cold reader? Don't let Spiritualism be your only basis for the truth
Energy does not die it merely gets dispersed. Einstein
We are balls of energy
Just because we have not discovered it does not mean it does not exist.
The possibilities are endless

John Edward:

quote:
Deconstructing The Dead:
Cross Over One Last Time To Expose Medium John Edward
By Michael Shermer

History is not just one damn thing after another, it is also the same damn thing over and over--time's arrow and time's cycle. Fads come and go, in clothing, cars, and psychics. In the 1970s it was Uri Geller, in the 1980s it was Shirley MacLaine, in the 1990s it was James Van Praagh, and to kick off the new millennium it is John Edward. Edward's star is rising rapidly with a hit daily television series "Crossing Over" on the Sci Fi network and a New York Times bestselling book "One Last Time." He has appeared, unopposed, on Larry King Live and has been featured on Dateline, Entertainment Tonight, and an HBO special.

Last year, Skeptic magazine was the first national publication to run an expose of John Edward in James "The Amazing" Randi's column (in Vol. 8, #3, available here at www.skeptic.com), a story that was picked up this week by Time magazine, who featured a full-page article on what is rapidly becoming the Edward phenomenon. There is, in reality, nothing new here. Same story, different names. In watching Edward I'm amazed at how blatant he is in stealing lines from medium James Van Praagh. It reminds me of entertainers, commedians, and magicians who go to each others' shows to glean new ideas.

Time's reporter Leon Jaroff, quoting from the Skeptic article, wrote a skeptical piece in which he reported the experiences of an audience member from an Edward taping. His name is Michael O'Neill, a New York City marketing manager, who reported his experiences as follows (quoting from the Skeptic article):

"I was on the John Edward show. He even had a multiple guess "hit" on me that was featured on the show. However, it was edited so that my answer to another question was edited in after one of his questions. In other words, his question and my answer were deliberately mismatched. Only a fraction of what went on in the studio was actually seen in the final 30 minute show. He was wrong about a lot and was very aggressive when somebody failed to acknowledge something he said. Also, his "production assistants" were always around while we waited to get into the studio. They told us to keep very quiet, and they overheard a lot. I think that the whole place is bugged somehow. Also, once in the studio we had to wait around for almost two hours before the show began. Throughout that time everybody was talking about what dead relative of theirs might pop up. Remember that all this occurred under microphones and with cameras already set up. My guess is that he was backstage listening and looking at us all and noting certain readings. When he finally appeared, he looked at the audience as if he were trying to spot people he recognized. He also had ringers in the audience. I can tell because about fifteen people arrived in a chartered van, and once inside they did not sit together."

http://www.skeptic.com/newsworthy13.html

Someone voicing your thoughts is a common phenomina that is simple coincidence. It's happened to me probably hundreds of times with family, friends and strangers. It proves only that great minds think alike.

I agree entirely that just because it hasn't been discovered doesn't mean it doesn't exist. However, psychic abilities have been tested ad nauseum and none have been discovered. I've read that the Russians are still reaching for it.

Thus, I must ask these mediums: if you can actually do these things, why haven't you relieved Randi of the burden of his $1,000,000 prize? Or hit the Powerball a couple of times?

But of course, they aren't in it for the money, they say. They only want to help people. Yeah, right! Edward and Syveia Browne get upwards of $700 for a private reading that might last less than an hour. Great work if you can get it, eh?


"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:35:43   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message
quote:
and why can it not go beyond just those who are close...
Maybe someone like a medium...
Do the research on Spiritualism and you should understand what I mean
Not everyone just makes things up off the top of there heads for no reason...
Many people have very true and real experiences
Don't be a True Believer
Storm, we skeptics have done the research! We've been doing it for decades and beyond. Every time a claim pops up, we check it out. All have been found wanting.

If the eminent Stephen Hawking or the late Carl Sagan came up with such a claim as these, they would be viewed with the same, jaundiced eye. You are now trying to argue from authority, and that just won't cut it.




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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Storm
SFN Regular

USA
708 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:36:42   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Storm's Homepage Send Storm a Private Message
If you have that ability with someone close why not someone else? We are at the frontier of Psychic ability. I must disagree with you conviction that psychic ability did not exist. Keep looking. It is like a radio station that has not been tuned. We here, see glimpses but yet we can not completely understand.
Just because we cannot control or replicate does not mean it does not exist. The experience and phenomenon does. If it did not we would not be discussing it right now

Rules and Models destroy Genius and Art - William Hazlitt
Great new ideas are just outside the prevailing thought

Storm
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:37:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message
quote:
Has there not been a time where you were thinking to say something and then all of a sudden someonelse says what you were thinking? Then you would say Hey I was just thinking that? I find this happens with people close to me.


Yes, with a very close friend it has happened more than 10 times. But so what? I certainly don't think I can read her mind, and she doesn't think she can read my mind. We are just alike, and when talking about the same things, randomly, you may have the same thought. Why does this seem so unusual to you?

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
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Starman
SFN Regular

Sweden
1613 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:49:17   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Starman a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Storm

Starman if you are a Scientist your brain then is also wired for pattern and correlation...
So why is it then Starman that when together with someone you see and hear similiar things? What is the force between ones who are together that create these visions these auditory sounds?
The environment.

People in the same place at the same time get roughly the same stimuli . Thought patterns are affected by such stimuli. If the people are alike (Same family, same gender, same culture) the chances of similar thoughts are quite large.
quote:
Do the research on Spiritualism and you should understand what I mean
So you won't tell me. No reason for me to care then.
quote:

Not everyone just makes things up off the top of there heads for no reason...
Many people have very true and real experiences
Don't be a True Believer
And a bla, bla, bla to you to.

"Any religion that makes a form of torture into an icon that they worship seems to me a pretty sick sort of religion quite honestly"
-- Terry Jones
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Storm
SFN Regular

USA
708 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:54:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Storm's Homepage Send Storm a Private Message
Who said it was unusual? Do not blow it off as so what it happens. That is not critical thinking not scientific. Don't be a true believer.
Just think about it why do you have that connection with someone close and why can't you have it with a personal stranger? What is the force behind the conenection? We know it exists. You yourself just said it has happened to you. I believe you
We know there are all anomolies
People like Stephen Hawkins
So why not an anomolie in the psychic field?
A Medium of sorts.
We know the phenomenon exists?

Storm
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Starman
SFN Regular

Sweden
1613 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  08:57:21   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Starman a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Storm

We know the phenomenon exists?

Example with evidence, please...

Edited by - Starman on 11/30/2004 08:57:46
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Storm
SFN Regular

USA
708 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2004 :  09:08:01   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Storm's Homepage Send Storm a Private Message
No I am not going to tell you . C'mon Starman You do not want to be a True Believer
What evidence do you have that it is the environment?
Do you mean Nature?
Have you not had this Phenomenon happen to you?
Maybe with the medium they and nature just mix a little better and things let say get picked up.
Blah Blah to you too

Storm
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