This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.


← Ghost seance goes wrong

Aguazul's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by Aguazul

I am not religious, but I have studied jungle traditions here in Peru and IMHO there is certainly more to reality than is normally understood by town-dwelling natives of reason-oriented cultures. Getting away from safe havens, things get weirder. It is clear to me that we are nowhere near explaining everything yet. Just like every generation of scientists' ideas are expanded and sometimes overturned by the next, there is more to the world than our current understanding of it. Familiarity with these weirder aspects of the world makes them understandable and predictable in their own way, manageable perhaps, but you're not in that position. You're playing around imitating occult practices without any understanding or precaution. Did you think to test first that imitating these practices would cause no ill-effects? Or did you base your actions on theory and received wisdom? If I were a chemistry teacher and I was going to demonstrate a potentially dangerous reaction to my class, I'd prefer to test it first away from the class, rather than purely relying on what other people say. You act like you think that you know all there is to know, when generations of scientists have demonstrated that their knowledge is always incomplete. The best scientists know that very clearly. Certainly, do experiments to expand your knowledge, but not arrogantly assuming that you already know the answer. Make a theory and test it. Call the "dark powers" and then verify that no ill comes of it, if you really want to. But IMHO you mustn't pre-assume the experimental result, or else what kind of scientific experiment would it be?

After all my study, I am relatively strong, so I think I could do this experiment and 'prove' that no ill comes from it, despite the fears of those others involved in the situation, due to my own power to keep the ill away. Perhaps this is your motivation? To prove that superstition can be defeated? But you must be strong enough. Probably my opinion doesn't sit well with atheists here, though -- sorry -- but I'm out here in the field, and not all of reality fits our current Western-scientific view of the world.

Tue, 15 May 2012 19:30:42 UTC | #941668